My name is Julie Whitehead. To look at me, I’m no different than any other Southern girl you’d encounter in the small Mississippi city of Brandon—I’m five-foot-four with dark brown hair down to my shoulders and hooded brown eyes, wearing brightly –colored clothes from Belk’s Department Store and shoes by Naturalizer. I carry a red Nicole Miller purse and have a weakness for anything made out of chocolate.  Unless you were around me long enough, you’d never know that nine years ago I had a psychotic break after the birth of my third child and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder—a disorder of moods where you swing from one extreme (mania) to another (depression)

I’ve been hospitalized for it six times for episodes of various degrees and take five psychotropic medications every day, some of them twice a day. I’m on Social Security disability; I lost my career as a freelance news writer because I could no longer interact with people normally nor could I face the pressures of daily deadlines.

I don’t say any of this to make people feel sorry for me. But it’s essential that I remember where I’ve been so I can appreciate the fact that no, I did not kill myself when I desperately wanted to and no, I haven’t done anything that couldn’t be undone and no, I do not have to deal any memories of dangerous behavior such as drug or alcohol abuse and all the other associated conditions that often accompany this diagnosis.

I’m living proof that a bipolar life does not have to mean craziness on one end and enervation on the other. Let me give some insight on my bipolar life, especially as I take it day by day.

8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. 4gazpacho
    Oct 16, 2014 @ 01:01:42

    I’m with you on this. A diagnosis of bipolar does not necessarily mean someone is violent, on drugs, buys out the store during manic phases, believes we’ve been kidnapped by extraterrestrials, unable to rear our children, and so on. It doesn’t mean we’re crazy. And what exactly does it mean to be crazy, anyway? That’s a catch-all phrase if I’ve ever heard one.



  2. Dyane Harwood
    Oct 28, 2014 @ 20:09:09

    Thanks for visiting my blog & commenting, Julie! As a mom with bipolar disorder, I look forward to reading your archives and getting to know a little bit about you!
    all my best to you, Dyane



  3. Jeni C
    Nov 12, 2014 @ 20:34:52

    Thank you for this ministry! I’m newly diagnosed with bipolar nos. Im starting a 3rd medication trial and in therapy. It’s encouraging to read about hope as a Christian!




    • jdlwhitehead
      Nov 12, 2014 @ 20:47:09

      JeniC, thanks for stopping by! I’m trying to reach out and give information I wish I could have seen when I was newly diagnosed. I bought out Borders on books on bipolar disorder, but they were all in the psychology section. Hopefully I can keep sharing through the blog and any other avenue God opens for me.



  4. Bonnie Lyn Smith
    Feb 20, 2015 @ 02:40:47

    I really appreciate your honesty in this battle as well as your voice of hope. I have several friends who struggle with this. I know the disorder is a thief at times, but I love your voice of victory running through your truth about what it is like to live this way. Blessings for helping so many people through your own willingness to be vulnerable. May you be so richly blessed for this!



    • jdlwhitehead
      Feb 20, 2015 @ 12:42:08

      Thanks for the kind words I’m doing my level best to show what God can do and is doing through me with this disorder. THe only reason for me to have it is for God to show himself through it.



  5. Brandi Clevinger
    Mar 07, 2016 @ 17:15:07

    Good afternoon! I am resuming the Chronic Friday Linkups. If you liked to participate, here is the link: http://www.beingfibromom.com/chronic-friday-linkup-9/

    I look forward to reading your posts!



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