Hi! My name is Tiffany. I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder II over 20 years ago. I refused to believe that I had such a thing. I refused medication and treatment. I just knew that I could do this on my own. Boy, was I wrong. I couldn’t handle the ups and downs of the illness. I was physically, emotionally and mentally sick. I had no idea how to manage the episodes. My family was tired of me. My friends stayed away from me. My children were scared of me. I had isolated myself from everyone because it was obvious something was wrong with THEM. It wasn’t me at all.
I had an episode that sent me to the hospital. There in the hospital, I was medicated and went through therapeutic treatment. I started to feel better and began to see that my actions were detrimental to myself, my children, my family & my friends. I have been medicated for 10 years now.
I am stable for the first time in my life. I am working towards being a peer-to-peer counselor. I have been sharing my story publicly (social media & in person) so that people will know that they are not alone. I work full time, volunteer with several civic organizations and I parent my two children. I spend quality time with my friends and family. I attend a group session weekly and a private session two times a month.
Not only do I know that I am not alone with others living the same struggle. I know that I am not alone because my family supports me every step I take. They are fighting this stigma battle with me as well.