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From the International Bipolar Foundation, click to visit our website




Only one month into the new year and we have already hosted 3 Webinars, 1 in-person lecture, a special luncheon with The Informant Mark Whitacre, released our newest book chapter on Aging, launched our newly formed Advisory Council AND we participated as The Stigma Busters team in a local marathon.  


But, we're not out of breathe yet.... stayed tuned for more educational  lectures & Webinars, new translations to our book, participation in a Directing Change Conference, and much, much more!


Want to be part of this fast growing, international organization? Contact me anytime:-)

To your health,


Muffy Walker


P.S. Feel free to also contact me at anytime Muffy

Our new mailing address: 8895 Towne Centre Drive, Suite 105-360 San Diego CA 92122  



February 2, 2013
If you are in a crisis,
please call:
1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433)
1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Join Our Mailing List
February 7, 2013
  Dr. Steve Hickman: The Practice and Potential of Mindfulness in Everyday Life.

Dr. Steven Hickman is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and has a joint appointment as an Associate Clinical Professor in the UCSD Departments of Psychiatry and Family and Preventive Medicine. Dr. Hickman is the Founder and Director of the UCSD Center for Mindfulness, a program of community building, clinical care, professional training and research. Since founding the Center in 2000, he has taught over 40 Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) courses, as well as adapting the program for nurses, medical students and other professional and clinical populations. The Center for Mindfulness has also become a global leader in providing professional training in the burgeoningfield of mindfulness-based interventions for professionals of all sorts. Dr. Hickman is also a member of the Executive Committee of the UC San Diego Center for Integrative Medicine. He is married and has three teenage children, affording him ample opportunities to practice what he preaches.
                                                         5:30-6:00 Social

6:00-7:00 Lecture and Q&A
Sanford Children's Research Center (Building 12)
10905 Road to the Cure
San Diego, CA 92121

Please R.S.V.P. To areitzin@internationalbipolarfoundation.org
Event and Parking are free

You can view all our lectures here
                                           February WEBINAR

"I wanted to say how much I appreciate the Webinars in general. They are an amazing resource for so many, and an educational treasure.

My sister and I attended yesterday's Webinar.  She is a medical professional and helped me understand more than I would have otherwise, as much of this fasinating Webinar was somewhat technical for me.  This challenge was a welcome one however, it gave me new insights and many areas to explore now that the Webinar is over.  We began searching the web as soon as the Webinar was over!
We looked up the words we had written down during the Webinar and were amazed at the important things we learned!
Ashley, you sure did a good job wrapping it all up - in asking questions that really helped the average lay person gain a summary of the subject matter.
Thanks so much to everyone responsible for these wonderful Webinars!

Creative People: Personality and Mental Health
February 5 at 9:00am PST
Douglas Eby, M.A./Psychology, is a writer, researcher and online publisher on creativity and personal growth. He is creator of the Talent Development Resources series of sites and author of the books "Developing Multiple Talents: The personal side of creative expression" and "Being Highly Sensitive and Creative." He has been researching creativity and creative people for over twenty years, and has interviewed many dozens of actors, writers, directors, designers, painters and other artists for a variety of print and online magazines and sites. During his education for a Master's Degree, he was an intern in a cognitive therapy-based hospital program for depression treatment. He has also interviewed multiple psychologists and psychiatrists who work with creative people.
Space is limited. Reserve your Webinar seat now at:  https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/497358622

You can view previous Webinars, including this past week's with Dr. Ellen Leibenluft here
For those of you who couldn't attend, Mark's lecture is now on our website for you to view.
Please click here
Article about the event
Live interview on TV 
The "REAL" Informant: Mark Whitacre
mark group shot
Incoming Board member Peter Mossy, Foundation President Muffy Walker, Muffy's son, Court Reed, Guest Julie Meier Wright, Speaker Mark Whitacre, Advisory Council member Reverand Jack Baca

From one of our guests: "A Big thank you!!!!!!!! - for enriching my day and inviting me to the luncheon and speaker today.  WOW!  I have thought of nothing else all afternoon but the presentation on many fronts:  medical, spiritual, personal.  This is one I will not forget."


A critical review of the recent literature and selected therapy guidelines since 2006 on the use of lamotrigine in bipolar disorder

Eslicarbazepine acetate in the management of refractory bipolar disorder.

Cognitive endophenotypes in a family with bipolar disorder with a risk locus on chromosome 4.

The Mental Health Foundation has issued a Call for Evidence as part of its major inquiry into the Future of Mental Health Services in the UK.

Department of Health announces pilot projects to improve severe mental illness services

Dr. Collins Expresses Concerns About Sequestration

Dr. Insel to Testify at Hearing on America's Mental Health System

The Supreme Court denied certiorari in Sherley v. Sebelius, letting stand the Court
of Appeals ruling against opponents of stem cell research. This victory
for research and patients brings an end to this long litigation.
Scientists can now proceed with their work, knowing that the Obama
Administration's policy on federal funding for embryonic stem cell
research will remain in place and that the National Institutes of
Health will continue funding. Human embryonic stem cells have shown
recent promise in many areas including diseases of the eye and spinal
cord injury, as well as serving as the basis for research on induced
pluripotent stem cells.

Obesity and the three-year longitudinal course of bipolar disorder.

Tragedies put spotlight on mental illness, families

Conductor with bipolar disorder on music and mental illness

Distinct Circuit Dysfunctions May Contribute To Different Features Of Emotion Dysregulation In Bipolar Disorder

Lithium Treatment Moderate-Dose Use Study (LiTMUS) for Bipolar Disorder: A Randomized Comparative Effectiveness Trial of Optimized Personalized Treatment With and Without Lithium.

Is impulsivity a common trait in bipolar and unipolar disorders?

Overactive lifestyle in patients with fibromyalgia as a core feature of bipolar spectrum disorder

Alexithymia, suicide risk and serum lipid levels among adult outpatients with panic disorder.

The comorbidity of adult attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in bipolar disorder patients.

Angiotensin receptor blockers for bipolar disorder.

Differential effects of depression and mania symptoms on social adjustment: prospective study in bipolar disorder.

T. gondii infection linked to bipolar disorder risk

Mood instability and functional recovery in bipolar disorders.

In vivo glutathione levels in young persons with bipolar disorder: A magnetic resonance spectroscopy study.

A randomized, controlled, pilot study of dialectical behavior therapy skills in a psychoeducational group for individuals with bipolar disorder.

A positive relationship between ambient temperature and bipolar disorder identified using a national cohort of psychiatric inpatients.

Early maladaptive schemas and functional impairment in remitted bipolar disorder patients.

Tell tale neurologic soft signs for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder

Thank you to all our Carlsbad Race Runners & Volunteers!




International Bipolar Foundation

announces our newly formed 


     Advisory Council




                                                             Reverend Jack Baca   



                                                                       Council Chair; Bob Watkins
John C. Reed MD., Ph.D.

Jeff Silberman

                       Dr. Andrew Viterbi
In Memorium; Dr. Murray Galinson


Healthy Living with Bipolar Disorder, now available on Kindle

here  book


 Our new chapter on Bipolar & Aging just released.
Email us at areitzin@internationalbipolarfoundation.org and we'll send you a copy.
  Can't thank you enough for the copy of Healthy Living with Bipolar.  It contains so much more of the topics that I've tried to nail down in other books and documents but with no luck.  This book has it all.  It should be made mandatory for all psychiatrists and shrinks that are "specializing in Bipolar Disorder."  In fact, I'm going to gift my doctor with a copy for his practice.  I find, you can never have enough information, especially when it's "speaking" to your own condition!  Thank you, thank you again.
~Rich B, Chicago, IL



suicide cover
Dr. Laura Prager will be our April 17 Webinar Speaker!!!!
Suicide by Security Blanket, and Other Stories From the Child Psychiatry Emergency Service: What Happens to Children with Acute Mental Illness
by Laura M. Prager and Abigail L. Donovan

Ellen Forney, author of MARBLES, will be discussing her book at a luncheon in La Jolla, CA

mental health ministries

Public Access TV Shows - Mental Health Matters

Rev. Barbara Meyers, a Unitarian Universalist pastor, has produced a monthly show on mental health issues called "Mental Health Matters." It is shown on cable television and individual shows can be purchased. All are available online. Congregations have used the programs, augmented with local speakers, for an adult religious education offering focused on mental health. Suggested questions for discussion and resources for further information are found on-line accompanying each show.

Below is a note from Barbara describing some of her work and providing permission for faith communities and others to access and use these shows.

I'm delighted to announce I am now producing a new series of short YouTube-based videos Stories of Recovery featuring real, honest, and inspirational stories of mental health recovery - all told from consumers or family members themselves, and each told in just 5-7 minutes. Once per month, viewers will learn how a different person has defied the odds and thrived in spite of mental health challenges.

In the video series debut, renowned advocate Jay Mahler shares his decades-long relationship with the mental health system. Hear about his first encounter with treatment and how that experience catalyzed a lifelong commitment to consumer rights activism. Click here to view the video.

"I am not only a psychiatric health care provider, but also have been diagnosed with bipolar 1 disorder. I have really benefited from the newsletters and blogs. My clients also enjoy hearing various excerpts from the blogs as this helps to normalize their experience with mental illness during psych admission and on discharge and helps to promote healthy coping skills.  I run a psycho geriatric assessment day clinic that is based on observing clients during activation. We do a lot of recreational activities but when I get to facilitate a group, I like to share gems of wisdom from your foundation and really do a lot of health teaching. Thank you a million times."
~Jessica L. CANADA  

Welcome Stephen & Ashley

      Our newest BLOGGERS!     


Hello, my name is Stephen. I am a 63 year old Canadian lawyer who is retired on disability due to a rapid cycling bipolar illness. I was first diagnosed as being bipolar in 1981 but, on review, I have suffered since at least 1968. I was suicidal and hospitalized in 1981 and adjusted to my life with therapy and medication.  My marriage was a casualty of steve the bipolar moods and ended in 1982. I was hospitalized in 1986 for suicidal ideation in a depressive mood with the same treatment, different medications. In my manic moods I had almost grandiose ideas of being the answer to the needs of many people. I sat on many boards and over the years chaired twenty two of them. I won a prestigious national award for volunteerism.
 However, I also started rapid cycling before the end of the eighties. I abused alcohol, drugs and, most destructive, had an eating disorder that took me over 400 pounds. I became diabetic. I was cycling at least weekly and could not focus on reality. I couldn't tell right from wrong. I began, in my confused moods, manic actions that changed from helping people to giving away money. I not only gave away my own money but funds from my trust account. I was again suicidal while depressed and hospitalized for 6 months. I was treated with medication, therapy and 21 ECT treatments. My misuse of trust funds attracted criminal problems and I was sentenced to three years in a federal penitentiary in 1994. I was a prominent figure in the community due to my manic involvement helping others and my problems became front page news, even drawing mention in a major national newspaper. In prison, due to lack of water I had a lithium reaction officials took to be a suicide attempt. I was placed in the highest security psychiatric range in the whole system and was the first person ever paroled from that violent environment. My lawyer wanted to put forth an insanity plea especially in light of the extensive treatment I had received for my rapid cycling. I pleaded guilty, not only because I felt moral responsibility for my manic actions, but also to allow those claiming back money to deal easily with the insurance company and banks involved in the restitution process, due to the nature of the cause-my rapid cycling bipolar illness. I was allowed to retire the law practice due to mental disability in 1991. I had given away my savings, retirement funds and investment properties, three house and two pieces of vacant land. I owed income tax in the $160,000 range. Income tax seized whatever assets and income I had left over in my accounts. There were no claims unpaid but I did have debts, in addition to income tax owing, established during my manic periods. So I declared bankruptcy to allow myself to start over. I can point directly to the rapid cycling as causing my downfall, so to speak.
 I now live in a small town with a loving woman outside the city where my doctor and therapist are located. I still cycle every one to two weeks but   lithium, bupropion, and risperdal all help to level the playing field. My therapeutic plan is to live a simple life as stress free as possible. I am helped by my therapist and regular hypnotic therapy sessions. I have also learned to deal with a decades long, ever present panic disorder and a few phobias like a fear of driving and claustrophobia.  I am constantly working at recognizing mood changes, communicating with trusted individuals, and exercising with long walks with my dog to help me level out my mental state. I have had the benefit of a caring common law relationship for the last 18 years. My family has been totally understanding and supportive. I have indeed reached that simple level of living where,  hopefully, rapid cycling bipolar symptoms will no longer control me.
 My name is Ashley, 39 years old, and I live right outside of Washington DC in Northern Virginia. I have never been one for change so I plan to be here the rest of my good ole life.  I am married to a wonderful man, who also has Bipolar and ADD. No kids but 4 wonderful kitties.  ash
Right from the start, the ADHD was apparent...my mom jokes I jumped out of her womb and took off running down the hall. From the start, I was not the "typical" girl. My hyperness was out of control. This was during the 1970's so ADD/ADHD was just beginning to surface. In 1st grade, my parents took me to a psychologist, and the psychologist diagnosed me with Oppositional Defiant Disorder.  Which means, I'm purposely trying to ignore authority and I'm on the path to perhaps become an arsonist in the future? I have many childhood scars from this.  I think I spent at least my elementary school life with my desk in the hall.
Skip ahead 26 years until now. Unfortunately, 15 years ago I received the diagnosis of bipolar disorder, which happened to be the type of bipolar which is the most difficult to treat. In 1998, three years after initial symptoms developed, the complete diagnosis of bipolar I, mixed state, ultra rapid cycling, with psychotic features was made.  Also at this time, I developed an eating disorder, anorexia, and bulimia. I also have OCD, thankfully it not severe and just on the "it's driving me crazy," level!
My bipolar is not a euphoric mania but a dysphoric mania; I become highly paranoid, agitated, and aggressive. In the past, I have experienced psychotic episodes, and when my mania is severe I have a heightening of senses, I see colors brightly, almost in 3-D, noises are very loud, and there is increased creativity. I had 4 suicide attempts.
I have been hospitalized in psychiatric units at least 18 times, two of which were in eating disorder clinics. I once tried to estimate how much of my life was spent in hospitals, and it added up to approximately 3 years!
I'm currently on 9 psych meds. My new psychiatrist would like me to go to the John Hopkins's Mood Disorder Ward and be "detoxed" from meds. Especially since, I'm on 2 anti-depressants which is a no-no for those with bipolar. I'm so scared, knowing that for the first 2 weeks he stated I would be in an extreme amount of discomfort. I'll keep you posted as to my decisions.
Again, I look forward to bonding with individuals with mental illnesses, and exchanging information that will help me grow and understand that bipolar is not a life sentence just some speed bumps and potholes in the road!

Musings from Genevieve:
"Growing In"
As a young person with a mental illness, I can't help but fixate the "living loss" of time.
                  People like me, those whom suffer and have suffered the true horrors that can only come from mental illness, lose time and aren't allowed  a proper period for "growing up".
We lose the sense of self, we lose the maturity. Those precious years in which teens begin to form their self-identity, their goals and talents and personality, they are lost in the haze of suffering and instability.
So now what?
With the increased expectations of coming adulthood, we are expected to be responsible. More self-sufficient. To work, go to school, become more independent financially. These things are hard to accomplish successfully when we begin a simultaneous struggle to define the self, to build self-confidence, and to actually manage time, sleep, diet and relationships on our own; discover interests and tastes, learn more social skills, and do all of the things we did not get the chance to do during that lost time.
We must shape ourselves into respectable, functional adults and then fill that mold simultaneously.
It is no simple task.
"Growing up"? Nah. I choose to look at it as "growing in" instead.

Research Opportunity: Developing Weight Loss Programs research
The TU Collaborative invites you to participate in a new survey that seeks to gather input from individuals with psychiatric disabilities about the resources and services that would help them to achieve their weight loss goals. The information gathered will help to develop a weight loss program for mental health consumers interested in losing weight, providing the services and resources needed to develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Who is eligible: Participants need to be over the age of 18 and have a psychiatric disability.

What the survey covers: This survey will help us identify what mental health consumers would like to see in a weight loss intervention. The survey will ask questions about personal health, nutrition, physical activity, goal setting, and preferences in technology and weight loss programs. Responses to the survey are completely anonymous and participants may choose to skip any question they do not wish to answer or stop the survey at any time. There is no penalty for not completing the survey.

How can I participate: The survey, which will take about 10 minutes, can be completed on a computer or iPad. https://templerehabilitation.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_0e07YeN2bd6ayKF


Dr. Schwartz is an Eating Disorder Specialist from the Eating Disorders Center for Treatment and Research at UCSD will share more information on the topic of eating disorders. 
February 7, 6:30p.m.-8:30 p.m.
University Christian Church, Friendship Hall
3900 Cleveland Ave., San Diego, CA 92103
2013 San Diego County Wellness and Recovery Summit:
Living the Dimensions of Wellness: Physical, Intellectual, Social, Spiritual, Financial, Occupational.  We recognize that there are many factors that contribute to a person's holistic well being.  The activities and presentations will focus on nine dimensions of wellness.
Wednesday, March 20, 2013 Joe and Vi Jacobs Center 404 Euclid Avenue
San Diego, CA 92114
NAMIWalk 2013 5K Walk
Saturday, April 13, 2013
NTC Park in Liberty Station   
2455 Cushing Road, San Diego, CA 92106 USA
New Educational Resources from DBSA
Employment Law Protection for People with Depression, Bipolar Disorder, and Other Mental Health Conditions" by Marilynn Mika Spencer, Attorney at Law.
February 4th, 6-8pm: UCSD School of Medicine, Garren Auditorium (La Jolla), CA. USA
My name is Dyane Leshin-Harwood, and last month I created a new Facebook community page called "Natural Healing for Mothers with Bipolar" in which we explore safe, holistic alternatives to living well with bipolar disorder. We are *not* 100% anti-meds; the focus is on complementary medicine. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder just two months postpartum. As a result, I founded our local chapter of the DBSA in which we offered a support group specifically for mothers with bipolar disorder.  www.facebook.com/NaturalHealingForMothersWithBipolar
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued a letter to health care providers to ensure that they are aware of their ability under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Rule to take action, consistent with their ethical standards or other legal obligations, to disclose necessary information about a patient to law enforcement, family members of the patient, or other persons, when they believe the patient presents a serious danger to himself or other people.


Fusion Academy
"How to Successfully Navigate the IEP Process"
February 4: 6:30 - 8:30pm
Fusion Academy Solana Beach Campus
512 Via De La Valle, Suite 201
Solana Beach, CA 92075
4th Annual Family & Youth Conference
Stigma Discrimination and Disparities in Children Services
February 13-15, 2013, San Diego, CA
Winter Workshop on Psychosis
14-16 February, 2013
Marrakech, Morocco
CREST BD WEBINAR: Optimizing Outcomes and Bipolar Disorder: Measuring and Maximizing Quality of Life
Thursday, February 21, 2013
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM PST
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM EST
register here
Kids Included Together's International Conference on Inclusion!
Date: March 13-15, 2013
Location: Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego
Visit KITconference.org for more information!
26th Annual Children's Mental Health Research & Policy Conference
March 3-6, 2013. Tampa, FL
Exploring Energetic Healing Practices of China
March 9-23, 2013 (25 CEUs)
Beijing, XianGuilin, Hangzhou, Putuoshan Island and Shanghai
Email: k.kramer@comcast.net
Website: http://www.healthyeldering.net
Purchase tickets today by visiting www.FlynnTix.org or calling the Flynn Regional Box Office at 802-863-5966.
NAMI San Diego gears up for San Diego County NAMI Walk 2013 
Saturday, April 13, 2013  

Jim DiCarlo, head of MIT's Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, is pleased to announce the return of"MIT's Brains on Brains,"
a day-long symposium of lectures and breakout sessions focusing on the current state of brain research at MIT.
The event will be held at MIT on
Tuesday, April 30, 2013. 
please PRE-REGISTER BY January 22th 2013 at brains.mit.edu.
Intensivseminar für Angehörige 
Freitag, 3. Mai, 14:00 - Sonntag, 5. Mai, 15:00 Uhr 2013
Evangelische Tagungsstätte Hofgeismar
IBPF GALA: Behind the Mask: Proud as a Peacock 
May 11, 2013
Estancia Resort, La Jolla, CA USA 
Blue Rose Girls Fashion Show
May 19, 2013,
Barona Golf Conference Center, San D
iego, CA USA 
The first ever London-based Art and Mental Health Festival. June 2014

DBSA 2013 National Conference 

June 15-17, 2013, Miami, FL   


ICBD Annual Conference

June 15-18, 2013, Miami, FL  


NAMI National Conference

June 27-30, 2013

San Antonio, TX USA 

About the International Bipolar Foundation
International Bipolar Foundation is a not for profit organization based in San Diego whose mission is to eliminate Bipolar Disorder through the advancement of research; to promote care and support services; and to erase associated stigma through public education.
Visit us online for more information: www.internationalbipolarfoundation.org
11622 El Camino Real, Suite 100  San Diego, CA 92130
p: (858) 764-2496  f: (858) 764-2491
8895 Towne Centre Drive, Suite 105-360  San Diego, CA 92122
We have a new Community Page on FaceBook.

Please join us on Facebook and "Like" us and help us spread the word.
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A Word About Funding


Please note that International Bipolar Foundation does not represent any pharmaceutical company or give any speeches for a pharmaceutical company nor does our site receive advertising dollars from any company.