I have been battling bipolar depression for my entire life. I was raised in an alcoholic and very dysfunctional family. It was like living in a war zone. You think the war in Afghanistan is bad – try living in my house for one day.

My mother was an abusive alcoholic and we did not know it at the time she also had bipolar disorder. We did not find out until she was admitted to an Alzheimer’s unit along with my father.

My father – where was he you ask? He was either working, was hiding behind the newspaper, or shut down emotionally at the dinner table. The dinner table was where all the volatile action happened. A daughter was pitted against daughter and it is a miracle that we are still speaking to one another.

Now that I have painted that picture of home life, I can tell you how I got out. I started going to Alanon meetings and then to A.A. meetings even though I did not have much of a drinking problem. I left home for good eventually never to return. I ended up in a homeless shelter for a while but then I had my own place.

It has not been easy. I have had to make several trips to the psychiatric hospital a few times, but I am okay. I will with the grace of a God of my understanding graduate with a master’s degree in creative writing which I did online one class at a time. I am a survivor and thrives.



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