Dare To Be Happy

By Candy Czernicki June 27, 2011

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. ~ Frederick Douglass

Let’s get this out in the open: I am bipolar II. That means the mania is really low-key and infrequent and the depression, at least in my case, for most of my life, has been pretty much nonstop.

There are degrees of depression, of course. Mine gets severe relatively quickly and stays that way a relatively long time. Yes, I have been an inpatient at psychiatric hospitals. Yes, I have self-harmed. Yes, I have been on every psychotropic medication known to man, and failed most of them. The two that I’m on right now combine for one really annoying side effect.

I have even, since about New Year’s, been undergoing a course of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). My memory is shot, along with many other things, but the suggestion to do it came up in month 6 of an unrelenting depressive episode. Nothing else was working.

Despite all this, I’ve managed to push through as best I can. I’ve found work, and a work schedule, that works for me, as well as a compassionate employer.

It’s still hard, though, and most people still don’t understand. They tell me to snap out [...] continue the story

2011 Facing Us Video Contest Winner

Melanie Oldham’s video won her first place in the 2011 Facing Us Video Contest! Watch her story of hope and recovery.

2011 Facing Us Video Contest Runner Up

Kristen Famiano’s video, “Bipolar Recovery,” won her 2nd place in the 2011 Facing Us Video Contest.

Darkest Hours

http://www.snagfilms.com/films/title/darkest_hours

Parents, teens, advocates and providers all share their horror stories about the lack of a system for children’s mental health care. While the documentary focuses on Connecticut, this is a national crisis: kids spending night after night in the emergency room because of the lack of psychiatric beds in the state; waits of up to six months to get an appointment with a psychologist because of escalating demand; families dealing with managed care companies that continually deny coverage for necessary treatment. All of this – combined with the raw emotion of accepting the fact that their child is mentally ill and will likely face a lifetime of medication and therapy.http://www.snagfilms.com/films/title/darkest_hours