“What is the difference between your Blog & Facebook Page vs. Therapy?”

I was asked the question, “What is the difference between your Blog and Facebook Page and Therapy?”

Here’s my answer:

My Facebook Page shares my experience, ideas and lessons I’ve learned, as well as for those who choose to participate.  The Page is a forum for people with a common experience to come together, have a voice and contribute to each other’s lives.

I believe that information and ideas that are essential to people’s ability to function in their life should be accessible to all.  It only betters our society if everyone has the ability to contribute to it.

Therapy is a vehicle for growth and change that I provide to people as a profession.  In therapy I do not share my experiences.  The sole purpose of therapy is to work hard collaboratively with my clients with the sole purpose of making their lives better.

I’ll use an exercise analogy to explore the difference.  I am happy to freely share how I thrive with bipolar disorder.  It is like showing and giving people my exercise equipment, technique and form.  I want people to be able to succeed.  Therefore, I put myself out there and give you what I’ve learned because I believe it is the right thing to do.  It is my passion and I strongly believe that as a person who thrives with bipolar disorder, it is my responsibility and duty to help other people thrive with bipolar disorder.

Unfortunately for many people taking what works for me and trying to duplicate it on their own does not work, even though I did it on my own without therapy.  [Note: I did not trust that my therapists could help me because I did not feel that they could understand what my experience was like for me; therefore, I did not let them in.  I lost respect for my therapists because I was the one who educated all of my therapists about bipolar disorder. Because of I felt alone in my circumstances, therapy did not feel safe to me.]

The reason it does not work is NOT because I am holding out information, it is because we are all unique individuals with different drives, strengths, gifts and circumstances. No two people experience anything in life the same way.  In order to thrive with bipolar disorder, we each have to work hard and discover what works for us.

Going back to my exercise metaphor.  We all have at some point or another been drawn into a really cool gadget on TV that promises that if we use it we will lose 20 pounds only for $19.95 or pay monthly for a gym membership.  What happens, we use the gadget or go to the gym once or twice, don’t lose 20 pounds, never go back to the gym (but keep paying for it in case we go someday) and years later find the gadget in the corner of a closet.

It just doesn’t work.

Working with me as a therapist is going on the journey to thrive with bipolar disorder one step at a time with a coach, team, tools and resources who are all working together with you to help you build the life you prefer versus having a playbook and trying to be an entire team that defeats bipolar disorder all on your own.

Thriving with bipolar disorder is hard work that is not easy EVER; nonetheless, it is doable if you give yourself no other option.