Hello, I'm crazy, insane, a lunatic, nuts, a freak, disturbed, confused, spastic, disabled, mad, mental, weird, different, odd, a problem, scary, ill, brain dead, demented, need a straight-jacket, anti-social, bonkers, childish, distressed, drugged-up, embarrassing, handicapped, indecisive, irrational, lost, not all there, a nutcase, an oddball, paranoid, scary, strange, tiring, unapproachable, unstable, wacky ... bipolar.
These phrases are what people with mental disorders are eternally stamped with. Tattooed on their hearts by their friends, loved ones, and society, and written in their arms with a blade by themselves. Once the papers are typed and you have your own file at the psychiatrist's office, you are forever one of the mentally ill; expected to walk around with a disclaimer that you aren't "emotionally sound."
I have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and generalized anxiety disorder. It took me time to come to terms with these illnesses. For a long time I thought that no one could know about it because they would abandon me. Worst of all, I thought I deserved to be abandoned. Then one day I had an epiphany. Someone with cancer doesn't say, "I'm cancer," so why should I say "I'm bipolar"? Why should I let a biological abnormality become my identity while others get the respect and recognition that it is just an illness?