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 Marcia Purse

Things NOT to Say to Someone With Bipolar Disorder

By April 2, 2012

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I've been lucky - nobody, at least to my face, has ever said, "Everybody has bad days" or "You're sick because you don't pray enough" to me. I did have trouble with a boss who basically told me to get over it, but my family and friends have been very understanding. I only wish my experience was more common!

Sadly, for thousands of people with bipolar disorder, family and friends are less than understanding. If you're reading this because someone you know has been diagnosed with bipolar, or are looking for some way to get the people you know to understand better, these articles are for you. Don't make the difficult life of your friend or loved one even harder. Learn what not to say to someone who has bipolar disorder:

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April 5, 2012 at 5:07 am
(1) Jim says:

As an evangelical Christian and BBN Bible Institute graduate who now heads a Men’s ministry, I can say that my bipolar disorder is very much a medical condition, and there is nothing in the Bible that says that it is not. Luke, who penned more words in the New Testament than any other writer, was, himself, a physician, and there were actually people healed by Jesus and the disciples of conditions which were arguably neurologicl and/or phychiatric in nature. Although bipolar disorder can often lead to compulsive behaviors such as sexual misconduct, mishandling of finances, and other sinful activities, having a handle on these things, repenting, and turning back to God, recognizing the frailty of our human nature, and the condition of our illness, makes it possible to move on.
All the men I minister to know of my condition, and hardly a day goes by that at least one of them does not call me for personal and/or spiritual advice. In fact, at least one of them also lives with this same disorder.
In closing might I add that were I not disabled as a result of my bipolar disorder and epilepsy, I would not be able to dedicate full-time service to the Lord’s work. In effect, this disorder has been a blessing of sorts, as it has kept me from chasing after the almighty dollar, instead being content with what my Creator and Lord has provided.

April 13, 2012 at 12:12 pm
(2) Linda F says:

Thank you ,Jim for positng this article. I have been uset over my adult sonwho has bipolar. He is a very sweet and good man but goes through these ups and downs that you have mentioned. Many people dont un derstand this disorder. I wish the* stigma would go away and that people would realize it can be controlled and people need to be encouraged that have bipolar disorder.

May 13, 2012 at 2:21 pm
(3) Yvonne says:

I was told I had it years ago now new pychtrsest say anxiety. As I on a high then low mood I’ve been put on sertraline 75mg was on 50 mg an now increased 4 wks ago an my mood is still low can’t be botherd with no one an cant go out feel tired an anxious can Enyone help me how long I will feel this way please Yvonne

January 26, 2013 at 1:06 pm
(4) Juli says:

Thank you to Jim. A dear friend of mine wants to strive to be a man of God, despite his short comings and despite the stigma he carries of being bipoar. I’m hoping that your comment will encourage him to hang on to the hope of doing great things.

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