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What Helps Megan, 31, With Bipolar I Disorder

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Editor's Note

Any medical information included is based on a personal experience. For questions or concerns regarding health, please consult a doctor or medical professional.

With our ongoing “What Helps Me” series, The Mighty is leaning into what sets us apart from other health sites: We aim to provide real health advice from real people who live it.

• What is Bipolar disorder?

In this spirit, we asked our community for the best insights and tips they’ve developed for managing their conditions. As always, they responded with their unique health stories and we are happy to pass along their well-tested resources to you.

Responses have been lightly edited for clarity.

Today, we meet Mighty member Megan. She is 31 years old and lives with bipolar I disorder.

Megan, what helps you?

THE MIGHTY: What helps you most when your condition affects your physical health?

MEGAN: Honestly? Sleep. I have to give myself time to sleep try to not feel guilty about it. Yes, sleep can be an escape, but when I miss breakfast to sleep, I probably need it.

What helps you most when your condition affects your mental health?

Many things help me. Primarily talking about what’s going on helps me, which is probably the hardest thing to do — but the most needed. I go to NAMI Albuquerque’s support group. I talk to my best friend, and just recently, I’ve gotten better at talking to my parents too. I find if I say and recognize what I’m feeling, my mental health becomes more manageable over time. It took me a while to get here, though, and I know honestly sharing emotions can be scary, but it helps me cope.

How do you cope when your normal self-care isn’t working?

I go to my journal, rip out a page, and tear it into little pieces. (I actually got this tip from a crisis line!) Sometimes I write my feelings in the moment on the page; other times, I just tear it. It’s a great release.

Thank you to Megan for her contributions to our community. Did you find this helpful? Add your gratitude in the comments.

If you want to tell us what helps you, you can complete our survey here.

Originally published: May 30, 2022
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