This is a blog about Bipolar. We’re talking about Bipolar here everyone. We all know that you can’t talk about Bipolar without talking about some deep heavy scary shit.
Some of you probably know that Therese has a new post up on her site. I want you all to hear some of what she said because I believe it applies to all blogs and writing.
Below I copied my comment on her article because again. I want you guys to know.
In addition I added a new page entitled triggers.
Because here is the thing….
I want you all to be safe…beyond safe. And THAT is why I am raw and honest the way that I am.
Raw and honest does not work for everyone
and it does not work for everyone all of the time.
So you need to be very aware of how certain things are making you feel.
There are sites I know bother me at certain times that I love to frequent at other times.
Sometimes I need to disappear from the whole internet thing.
It is individual.
I can’t do that for you.
I just published a really tough deep rough piece called not dead but Free.
Now that is some heavy shit people. I did not share it to depress you. I shared it because if I was feeling like that and I read that on a blog then I would feel better. Not worse. And I only know how to interact with the world based on me and my experiences.
That is what works for me. That doesn’t mean it is right for you.
In general I write this blog as if I was writing it to myself….my younger newly dxed lost searching confused self.
I write what I needed to hear.
Okay so here is Therese’s excerpt and my comment.
The second thing that needs to happen is that you, readers, need to understand that this is only one story. It is my story, not yours. All of us are different. When I talked to my mentor Mike, he told me to visualize all of us in a group therapy session or support group. Each person went around and told his or her story. There were no judgments, just listening. What worked for Sue last week may have failed terribly for Ellen three months ago, and what worked for Fred yesterday may have proven helpful for Frank, as well. We are exchanging ideas, learning from each other. We do this a lot on ProjectBeyondBlue.com and Group Beyond Blue. I’d like to do more of that here.
So my story is just that—my story.
I offer it to you to take what you like and leave the rest.
If it causes you pain in any way, like that O Magazine article did me, then please chuck it. I’m very sorry it wasn’t helpful for you.
It gladdens my heart to know that my words meant something to you. Thank you.
This post is beautifully said. As usual.
I am so glad that you have processed this whole situation and are coming out on the other side in this way. I really wish this had not happened to you but it also has brought an important issue to the fore.
This has been a wake up call for all of us…writers and readers. About the internet. About blogging. About what we can and can’t control about what we can and can’t help. The limitations we have. The element of risk involved in all of it….the risk inherent in this vulnerable population.
I think most of us would say that the Internet has been life changing and saving in terms of being able to connect with others like us when we may not be able to in “real life”…..because of the nature of our illnesses and the reason we are here reading and writing in the first place.
But it is also a relatively new medium of human connection and there are kinks.
We also happen to be connecting about something that is extremely sensitive, volatile, individual, and sometimes painful.
We need each other and we need the honesty. But we also need to be careful with ourselves.
Like you said, we are not face to face. We are writing words and reading words. And the line between fact and opinions and personal and universal can blur sometimes in the space between.
It may be too easy to forget that the people behind the blogs are just people with keyboards. That what you are reading is opinion and personal experience. Thoughts and ideas. As in a support group.
And that is what we do. We get brave…step up…and start saying things..sharing things..helping other people by exposing our own hurts, ideas, and experiences.
And also like you said, there is only so much we can control as the writers….anyone can read at anytime…..
And if we censor everything then the point and heart of the whole thing is lost……
That true raw something that penetrates people’s hearts and changes their thoughts and relationships to their illness and their journeys….would be lost.
What I will take away most, however, is the outpouring of compassion and support from all of your readers. Once again proving to me that though the online “mental illness” community is just that…online…I am proud to be a part of it because the caring and compassion I have witnessed over and over again.
That was the long version of my comment.
My short version is…..