“The experience of separateness arouses anxiety; it is, indeed, the source of all anxiety. Being separate means being cut off, without any capacity to use my human powers. Hence to be separate means to be helpless, unable to grasp the world — things and people — actively; it means that the world can invade me without my ability to react.”
“The Art Of Loving”, Erich Fromm (1956)
My blogroll has changed substantially since I started back in November, 2006. I’ve never thought of the blogroll as a place where I should reciprocate or thank someone for putting me into theirs. I’ve always treated it as a place to store blogs I’ve thought important enough for me, and others, to read regularly.
The first serious blog I put in there was Clare’s “Orphans Of Dark And Rain“. Unfortunately several blogs I’ve blogrolled have disappeared over the past six months. Sisyphus’ Ledge, Queenminx, Puddlejumper and, most recently, Lucky Mud have all deleted their blogs. Then there are the people in my blogroll who have gone on permanent vacation, including Clare’s “Orphans”, as well as “depressionisms ★ neurogenesis”; “A Non Addicts Struggle With Alcoholism”, “Misneach“, “Puddlejumping“, “…What Was I Looking For?” and; “la tête ailleurs…” .
Some of the people who have killed their blogs over the past few months did so because they felt a new strategy in their recovery was needed. Personally I think it’s an overly drastic solution, but fair enough. But several others did so because they felt they weren’t part of a community. They were doing what they thought was necessary to become a part of something larger, because they believed being a part of a larger community would help in their recovery. But, for whatever reason, could never quite break through.
So this is the first of a two part post, and possibly the first in a kind of quarterly update on who’s who and doing what in my blogroll. Right now I want to highlight a few blogs which are very well written, updated regularly and have insights and commonalities I think need sharing…
First: Bryan… I’ve been reading Bryan’s “HiDef Entropy” blog almost since I started blogging. He recently made the crossover from Blogger to WordPress and is gradually making himself at home. He has experienced and worked through many of the difficulties facing Americans with mental illness. I really believe that I’ve learned from his writing, and that his recent move to WordPress will result in him finding the community he needs.
Second: Up & Down… aroundnaround has managed to build up a community of her own, and I see her comments on a few blogs I read regularly. But she has so much experience living and dealing with manic depression that I see her site, and her experiences, as being a rich resource for those of us looking for some, or someone’s, answers.
Third: sleepless in cologne… Bine has a great sense of humour and is a wonderful artist and has managed to gather a community around her blog. But her attitude towards living with a combination of Bipolar and ADD is something I think many of us with similar ailments can learn from.
Fourth: Le Blank… is a reasonably frequently updated diary blog written by someone coming to terms with what manic depression has done to her, and what she can do against the disease. Personally I think reading about other people’s similar experiences would help her, and that her experiences could help others. She’s a talented writer with a lot to say.
Thordora, from “Spin Me I Pulsate” recently posted about a drop in her blog stats. It was the responses, or some of them, that originally made me think about doing this… or, at least, they were the latest reminder of the reasons for some of the suicided-blogs in my blogroll. A few of the bloggers I thought were gone, gone, gone recently came back. Bipolar Mo has recently made his blog public again, and Spekkah, who runs “The truth ALWAYS hurts…” recently made his first post in almost two months.
I’m a big believer in community responsibility. And, in here, I believe we are somewhat responsible to each other. I’m always looking for blogs which can help me — and maybe help people who run through my sidebar — in our recovery, and I think our blogrolls can be the first line in that responsibility towards other people. At the same time maybe I owe it to the people in my blogroll to make sure they’re being properly represented.
I’ve got a few more thoughts on the subject, but I have to do a little research first. So, for now, consider this an introduction to some new blogs. So, please, visit and say hi.
I think that especially for people with bipolar, a drop in visits or stats (even when they can be attributed to simple things like summer) kick off the “OMFG!NOONELIKESMEISMELLLIKEASS!” train in our heads. WHich sucks.
I was merely looking to be petted for awhile, cause dammit, I need to know that someone is listening to me sometimes. And I think that in many cases, we get so caught up in documenting what’s going on that we forget to remind people that just a simple ‘I’m here, keep talking” is all we need.
You are such a pleasure to read, your words flow on your pages so effortlessly that it almost makes me ill to be a blogger at times. I don’t know how you do it to be honest and I just want to know when your book is coming out.
You have an amazing gift with words that is special to the many of readers that you have.
I really don’t know what to say.
When I started my blog I wasn’t doing it for anyone but myself and now you have been my biggest supporter of what I put in text has meant a lot to me. I hope that others will value your opinion of someone that is as affluent as you are with the respect that it demands.
I miss a lot of the blogs that you mentioned also. Puddlejumper and Mo were the 2 blogs that I couldn’t wait to read on a daily basis to see what was going on in their world, and I must say that I am very glad to have Mo back he has been a good friend to communicate with even if I could only do so in the passing mail that we could get to one another. there is something in him that is remarkably brilliant and it him closing his blog would be like you going away it would have a big effect on the people that they have touched.
To a point I felt almost betrayed at first. I took it as something that I did wrong. Maybe I wasn’t supportive enough maybe I was getting the wrong message from those that I conversed with through the random comments I made. Maybe I didn’t make enough comments and wish there was something that I could do to persuade the individual to post just one more entry.
Life is strange and complicated at times though. There are a lot of variables that go into a decision that is as big as dropping your blog off the face of the planet and sometimes you have to wonder if the things that they have put in text has maybe influenced those closer to home that would not like to have their life plastered across the web. Because even in the altered state of living that we are in we still effect those that are close to us even if we are seeking our 15 seconds in this great big cloud of the web that we like to call home.
I really hope that you are having a great day and I look forward to hearing more from you soon.
awwww, i’m cringing with delight to be part of the buffet, and with such praise from the maître.
i have to add that i’m not bipolar. when i started searching for insight into bipolar disorder in january (you were actually the first one i found, then i discovered puddlejumper, then thordora … and found your blogs incredibly deep, sincere and humorous at the same time) i actually feared my boyfriend might be bipolar. however, i haven’t found an answer to that yet and he’s definitely not seeing anyone about it.
ADD, yes, i “qualify” for that. occasional depression too. but mostly i’m around because i like you all and you’ve helped me understand a lot.
Hey, listen, I already thanked you time and time again for putting me up here and yes, I still owe you the fucking pic. It’s coming.
And I will definitely check out these reads. Can you believe I haven’t before! Shame on PA…
Only so much time in a day, right… So many blogs…so few brain cells…
Hi to all of you on the steaming plate of rice!
Edit: I mean my few brain cells…not the few brain cells of the other blog/gers…
Just to clarify.
PatAnon, there’s no reason to thank me for adding your blog to my sidebar… I’ll take it, happily, but I’m certain that your site would be a success without me. Yes, please, send me a photo… I know anything you can do will make my blog look better and is appreciated. Thordora’s got a great shot that keeps her fairly anonymous if you’re looking for inspiration.
Bine… I don’t know where I picked that up. I was sure in one of your responses you meantioned you were dealing with your own personal bipolar and ADD. I’ll fix what I wrote in the post. I’ve really enjoyed having you around, and seeing you around the blogs I read.
If there’s someone in you life who has been diagnosed I’ve always thought it was important to read as much about the disease as possible. Whether they’re in treatment or not, the more understanding you have about the disease, the more likely they are to want to understand. It also gives someone in your position some power against the constant manipulations associated with the disease.
“…I felt almost betrayed at first. I took it as something that I did wrong. Maybe I wasn’t supportive enough… . Maybe I didn’t make enough comments…”
Dude, that is exactly how I’ve felt when I run across that hatefully concise “The authors have deleted this blog. The content is no longer available.” notice from WordPress. My first thought, when it’s someone I know, is almost always “what did I do?” followed by “how can I help them fix it?”
When it comes to recovery blogging I firmly believe you have to do it for yourself first, otherwise it makes no sense. Exaggeration or lying on a blog like this only fucks with your own recovery because you either a) start believing the lies, or; b) you get feedback based on the lies, which is no feedback at all. All you’re doing in either case is writing fiction. All of which is to say, I don’t believe I’ve ever encountered any bullshit on your site which is why I think it has value to readers who either have the disease and are trying to push through with their own recovery, or who know someone who is trying… even the LOL Cats were funny.
Don’t be shy about posting responses around the blogs you find interesting.
Here’s a website you may find useful. http://www.addicted.com is a site for friends, families, and those who suffer from various addictions.
[editors edit: I get a warning when I click on that link. Do do at your own risk. Good luck.]