I am frustrated this morning — beyond belief.
I sat down just now to begin my extremely enjoyable research, with a cup of coffee in my hand, and a smile on my face. The sun is shining down on me, and my dog is planted at my feet. I had planned on completing a piece I’ve been working on discussing ECT, but instead I am forced to put my efforts into debunking myths and stigma. These messages are promoted by one of us, a blogger with bipolar, named Natasha Tracy. I have zero desire to bash her on a personal level, as I have no desire to do that to anyone. I do however have a gag reflex, and it has been triggered by the “research” she is promoting and her employers are supporting. So, let’s begin the discussion of the work at hand. I just want to be clear, I am only interested in discussing the work, and I am not interested in discussing the individual. I don’t know her personally, nor do I assume she is satanic.
I am struck by the negativity that many major health-care websites are perpetuating, such as healthyplace.com, healthline.com, and answers.com. They are advertising Ms.Tracy as an expert on those sites, so if that is the case, I’m sure the vast majority of her readers will assume they can trust her message and treat it as fact-based.
Here’s the rub:
I find her message to be wrought with negativity, misinformation, and deeply internalized social stigma.
Here are some titles for articles that she has written recently:
- How Are You? – I’m Not Fine, I’m Bipolar
- Intelligence and Bipolar Disorder (*I’ll save you the time, she thinks we’re stupider than the average bear)
- Can You Die From Bipolar Disorder? (*Saving you more time, the answer is yes)
- More Ways to Die from Bipolar Disorder
- Trying Bipolar Therapy You Don’t Believe In – Mindfulness Meditation
- Can a Person with Bipolar Disorder be Happy? (*Again, don’t waste your time, she’s not happy)
- I’m Too Tired to Keep Fighting Bipolar Disorder
I’m sure that list sets the general tone. I am hoping to be a much needed counter balance to this sort of negativity. Likewise, for the vast majority of her “research” I’m quite certain I could provide an alternate study that refutes it. I’m sure this isn’t universal to every single thing she has ever put into print, of course there is some value in her experience and her sharing, but overall I find the writing perpetuates nothing but hopelessness and fear. She is basically explaining why your life as a bipolar person will never be whole and you should accept it. She says that quite often. She says you should accept weight gain, terrible medication side-effects, a lack of social interaction, and mental insufficiency. It’s all the writing. Don’t believe me? Go check it out for yourself.
I’m calling bullshit and shenanigans on that message. I know profoundly creative people with this disorder. I know excellent parents, business owners, and wonderful friends who, yes, they have struggled immensely, but ultimately they are all prevailing and leading rich meaningful existences with this diagnosis attached. I am one of those people. My film and this website will be dedicated to providing truthful information with a committed voice that preaches recovery, health, happiness, and meaning in people’s lives who are affected by bipolar.
I won’t debunk her writing with sources, unless I am asked to do so, because I feel it is taking time away from my important work. I am of course willing and able to refute topics, if people desire it. Just ask me, and I’ll do my best to answer your questions and hopefully restore your self-vision as a full and important being. I will cite science, and not just opinion. Seriously, ask away… I’m here to help.
Don’t internalize negativity. It will not help you recover, or maintain stability.
UPDATE: I have a meeting for the remainder of the afternoon, but I really appreciate all the dialogue everyone is offering each other. I will respond to each and every comment. You guys took the time to contact me, and I appreciate that. It just might take me a little time. Have a great rest of the day!
UPDATE 2: First of all, thank you to everyone who commented. I really appreciate you taking the time to make your position known. I am hopeful that I haven’t missed any comments, and that I responded to each and every one of you. Even the angriest comments are useful, if you’re able to step back and see the motivation behind the sharp tongue. I will take all that you have to say to heart and mind, and consider your perspectives. Really truly. I have been asked to write a more complete assessment to back up my point, rightly so! Please give me a little time to complete this task, and I will post it for your viewing, devouring, and perhaps flogging. 🙂 Have a great night everyone!
UPDATE 3: There is a response to this post located at: http://www.findmoreoutthere.com/new-voice/