Thursday, April 1, 2010


Five years ago, when i was in the 5th grade, I became aware that my sister, eight years older than me, had been diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, a mental illness that causes shifts in a person’s mood, energy and ability to function. The illness was so unknown to my family and me, yet it seemed so highly influencial to both her and us. Back when it was all new to us, I wasn't quite a teen, but my older brother was. It wasn't as evident to me how his actions reflected by my sister's diagnosis, but years later as it's ever-so-present in my family, I can see how my actions are completely affected by her life long illness.
I was surprised at how revealing this project was, although I found that the actual results didn't show me much compared to the insight I found. Once I found the topic to research, which was the influence of Bipolar Disorder on teen caregivers, I was instantly inspired0. The results to the questions I came up with, gave me some broad insight to the mental illness topic, but I would have hoped to find a little more about it all through the questions specifically. I learned that the more we give in to caring for the people we care for, the more likely it willbe to define our identity. If there was one thing I learned personally, it was that I must find a balance in learning about myself and learning and caring for my loved ones, like my sister. That is something I will value keeping for the rest of my life.


Based on the results I got, there could definitely be further research on this topic. The actual evidence based on the actions of how teen caregivers are influenced by Bipolar Disorder is very undiscovered. The topic on caregivers in general is quite undiscovered. More specifically, the small group of teens that also has to deal with caring for people with this disorder among many other personal transitions is something that would be very interesting to investigate.
I noticed many things from results. Many people seemed to choose the neutral choice given, in fact, it was the second highest chosen choice in both of my questions. It was if they disregarded the topic, which led me to thinking that people with an opinion could have possibly been taking advantage of the only action needed was choosing an answer choice on a survey. Its understandable though, because as such an undiscovered topic, (mental illnesses) could pass over many peoples' heads. I believe this means we need to take action in learning about something that is ever-so-increasing. Right now, in the U.S., Bipolar is found in every 1 in 20 people, and in that fraction, 1 in those 5 commits suicide by the time they're 25. It's obviously an important topic to learn about all the way to how it affects other people.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Approximately 1/3 of people that answered the questions were boys with the other 2/3 being girls and of that make up, 32 of the 99 surveyed strongly agreed that people diagnosed with a mental illness should be able to do the same things others would do. Another 25 simply agreed, but 30 were neutral. Those statistics all add up to 87 of the 99 people surveyed. This shows that people generally do believe that there should be no discrimination against people with mental illnesses. The 30 people that were neutral were most likely didnt care about the mental illness or didn't know enough about it to agree or not. These results show that the people that feel a certain way about Bipolar, whether it may be strongly agreeing or disagreeing, let that awareness they have affect them and their actions.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Survey Results

Out of the 99 respondents of the two survey questions I asked were 36 male (about 40%) and 63 female (about 60%.) 35 out of the 99 were black and 49 of the total 99 were white. 2 were Asian and 1 was Latino. 7 were mixed, and lastly, were another race.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Summary of New Hope for People with Bipolar Disorder

The book I read part of was called New Hope for People with Bipolar Disorder. It consisted of non-bias information on the inner conflicts and feelings people deal with as caregivers of people diagnosed with Bipolar. The main message of the section went as quoted: "Our reactions to other people give us more insight to ourselves than to others. If we choose only to focus on the behavior of others, we will get to know how the behave. If we focus on how we are influenced by others and still look further inward, we will more clearly recognize our inner self." It went on to explain how although that message can be directed to anyone, more specifically, it's related to caregivers of people diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. Even more specifically, teens in close relationships with these people have to battle to focus on how to find out about themselves, and letting all the caring they do define who they are.

Fawcett, Jan, Bernard Golden, Frederick K. Goodwin, and Nancy Rosenfeld. "Living With People With Bipolar Disorder."New Hope for People with Bipolar Disorder: Your Friendly, Authoritative Guide to the Latest in Traditional and Complementar y Solutions, Including: Proper ... Depression & Manic-Depressive ... (New Hope). 1 ed. new york: Three Rivers Press, 2000. 264-265. Print.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Topic Question

If you are a caregiver of someone with bipolar disorder, how does it affect the other aspects of your life and the insight you have about yourself?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Intro to the Influence of Bipolar Disorder on Teen Siblings

This topic is very important, personal as well as sad to me. I chose it because my older sister at the age of 23 is diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. I, being 15, have learned so much about the disorder through this highly influencing experience, yet, I have so much more to learn. This illness is very present in the lives teens and can be extra hard to cope with as they go throughtperonal conflicts as well. I hope to investigate the effects on the teens as caregivers and how they cope and live with this irremovable label that changes lives drastically.