December 2014

December is here and we all know what that means! The holidays or holi-daze will soon be here.


For some, the holidays are a time for gathering with family and friends, gift giving, festive parties, shopping sprees, cookie exchanges, caroling, and more. For others, the holidays are a lonely time evidenced perhaps by the lack of all the joy experienced by others. For most though, the holidays are a time, good or bad, which can be filled with stress.

All of us at International Bipolar Foundation wish you a happy holiday filled with love, good health and peace.

To your health,

Muffy Walker  


To mark the end of the 2:365 project, we are offering a massive 20% off all 2:365 paintings, books, calendars and postcard packs through December 20th

Remember that from each sale of the stunning 2:365 Art Book, 10% is donated to the International Bipolar Foundation. Give something this Holiday Season which can truly change people's lives. Delivery is world wide while stock lasts! See the collection here!

To purchase paintings, please email direct.
   #MakeSomeoneHappy Challenge

What: A campaign to make at least one person happy and to bring awareness to International Bipolar Foundation and our work to help the more than 165 million people with bipolar disorder 

Who: Anyone interested in brightening someone's day

How: It's as easy as 1, 2, 3,

      Wear a red nose and video yourself telling them (at least one person) your wish for their happy day, then post it on your social media: "Hi [name], I want to make you happy today so I'm wearing this red nose. When feeling low or down in the dumps, remember this nose to relieve your grumps. I invite you to wear a red nose and make 3 more people happy." Remember to use the hashtags #MakeSomeoneHappy and tag us on Facebook (  or Twitter (@intlbipolar) . Don't have social media? Send Heather at your video and/or pics and we will post it for you! 

      Be creative; use a Rudolph or clown nose, lipstick, a sticker, ping pong ball...your choices are endless

      AND ask people to make a donation to us at when you post your photo or video to social media!


Please forward to friends, family and colleagues and ask them to participate in this fun challenge!


Dr. Carlos Zarate: 

An update on the Treatment and Research of Treatment-Resistant Depression and Bipolar Disorder 

Wednesday, December 3rd, at 9:00 am PST

This lecture will review new research efforts underway to better understand brain structure and function in mood disorders using a variety of methods (e.g., neuroimaging, genetics, electrophysiology) in the context of treatment with rapid acting antidepressant agents. These next generation studies will likely focus on more precise diagnoses and a personalized medicine paradigm in order to develop better treatments for those who need them most.


Carlos A. Zarate, M.D. is of the Section on Neurobiology and Treatment of Mood and Anxiety Disorders, Division Intramural Research Program, National Institute of Mental Health, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, George Washington University and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Howard Medical School. 

Space is limited, reserve your seat now at:

Angela Inglis: 

Genetic Counseling for Psychiatric Illness

Thursday, December 11th, 2014 at 9:00 am PST

In 2012, Angela began providing clinical genetic counseling services exclusively to those with psychiatric disorders and their families in the context of the first and only clinic of its kind in the world at the BC Women's Hospital & Health Centre. This service is for both men and women who are interested in learning about what might have contributed to the development of their own mental illness or that of their child/sibling/parent, etc. It is also for people who are interested in learning about the chances of other family members developing a mental illness.

"Counseling made clearer my understanding of the part genetics plays in mental illness. It also allowed me to put things in perspective and to be able to pass valuable information along to my offspring that may assist them in maintaining good mental health." -

Psychiatric genetic counseling recipient.

Angela Inglis is a genetic counselor and a clinical assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at the University of British Columbia. Angela worked in psychiatric research for a number of years, coordinating and overseeing the day to day operations for a research program which involved studies in postpartum depression, stigma among family members of individuals with psychiatric disorders, and a genetic counseling study for individuals with psychiatric disorders (schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and schizoaffective disorder).  


Space is limited. Reserve your seat now at:


Dr. Mohammad Alsuwaidan: 
Igniting the Creative Fire: The Neurobiology of Creativity in Bipolar Disorder 
Wednesday, December 17th , 2014 at 9:00 am PST


Why does bipolar disorder seem to run in creative type? Artists, Poets, Actors, Comedians, Painters and Composers seem to have more mood disorders than the average individual. Is there a real link, or is this a romantic exaggeration? In this webinar Dr. Mohammad Alsuwaidan discusses the bipolar-creativity link. The actual brain mechanisms behind creativity will be explored, which will also lead to a better understanding of the underpinnings of bipolar disorder itself. The dilemmas of how to treat bipolar disorder while maintaining and not dulling creative drive will also be discussed. 

Dr. Mohammad Alsuwaidan is an assistant professor of psychiatry at both Kuwait University and the University of Toronto. He also serves as the Founding Head of Mood & Anxiety Disorders and Inaugural Director of Education at the Kuwait Center for Mental Health - Kuwait's national mental health hospital. 

Dr. Alsuwaidan completed his psychiatry residency, mood & anxiety disorders fellowship and medical education fellowship at the University of Toronto. He also trained in mood disorders at the Stanford University bipolar clinic and the Tufts Medical Center mood clinic. He completed a Masters of Public Health (MPH) at Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. Alsuwaidan is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and a Diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.


Space is limited, reserve your seat now at:

After registering you will receive a confirmation email
containing information about joining the Webinar.


Dr. Jennifer Bahr: 
Resilience, the Hallmark of Health

Tuesday, February 17th at 5:30 pm

Janssen Research & Development

3210 Merryfield Row

La Jolla, Ca 92121


Dr. Jennifer Bahr, ND draws from her unique perspective gained from experience in both conventional and natural medicine as well as both doctor and patient to discuss what she has learned to be the most important hallmark of health resilience. In this talk, Dr. Bahr shares her perspectives on health and resilience based on both physical and emotional markers, as well as some guidelines on how she achieves this for herself and her patients.  


Dr. Jennifer Bahr is a licensed naturopathic doctor that specializes in the natural treatments for mental illness and endocrine disorders. Dr. Bahr is among the most highly trained doctors in this field. In fact, she is the only doctor to have completed a naturopathic residency focused on the homeopathic treatment of mental illness. Dr. Bahr brings a unique perspective to treating all of her patients. She combines excellent clinical skills, targeted lab testing, and compassion rooted in life experiences to her practice, making a visit with her truly a better healthcare experience. 

Story of Hope and Recovery
                     by  Leanora K. Giannini

I would have to say that my bipolar was first diagnosed when I was 20 years old. Although I had symptoms many of my previous doctors and therapists had insisted it was depression. My most recent therapist was able to diagnose me. At last I had the answers I was looking for. For many years (since the age of 9) I had gone through ups and downs. In school I would do really well and through my dark days I would not bother to show up to class. Because of my diagnosis have had to make some changes that were stressful. I have had to exercise more to keep the weight off because my meds have made me gain weight. An exercise regimen and a strict adherence to the medication directions is so important. I do not drink anymore, nor do I smoke anymore. Honestly, those lifestyle changes have made me a healthier and happier person.

Read more here...

Our 2015 Gala,
Behind the Mask: 
Changing the Game of Stigma
will take place May 9, 2015 
in San Diego, CA!


Jeff Grace

Sally Buchanan-Hagen

International Bipolar Foundation blogger, Dyane Leshin-Harwood

has been nominated by best selling author Wendy L. Williamson for the WEGO Health Activist "Best in Show Blog" Award. 

Harwood plans to use WEGO's influential social platforms to help

bring more awareness to bipolar disorder if she places as a finalist. Nominees need a show of community support in the form of endorsements to win. 

Please endorse Dyane here!






e-HCL-32: a useful, valid and user friendly tool in the screening of bipolar II disorder.


**International Bipolar Foundation Scientific Advisory Board Member(s)


You have an opportunity to help us make even more of a difference in our community. GreatNonprofits - a review site like TripAdvisor - is honoring highly reviewed nonprofits with their 2014 Top-Rated List. Won't you help us raise visibility for our work by posting a review of your experience with us? All reviews will be visible to potential donors and volunteers. It's easy and only takes 3 minutes! 


Create Your Review Here! 

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The suicide of her father hits Evonne Agnello hard, but when her brother follows suit four years later, she wonders if fate will send her along the same path.

Grappling with the deaths, handling the family business, and dealing with a mother needing care hundreds of miles away, Evonne finds depression pounding on her door. But she stands firm--after some wobbles--determined to not let the intruder destroy her life. 

Read More

In this fiercely candid memoir, Dr. Pruchno, a scientist widely acclaimed for her research on mental illness and families, shows how mental illness threatened to destroy her own family. Not once, but twice. 
Unraveling the mysteries of her mother's and daughter's illnesses, Pruchno fought to preserve her marriage and protect her son. But it was not until she came to terms with her own secrets that she truly understood the destructive and pervasive effects mental illness has on Read More

The three part odyssey is a devastating memoir about a veteran that has suffered his entire life and eventually used college to "Come Alive" as he became literate to the world and himself- To become an international mental health advocate and one of the most sought after public speakers in the United States that lives with Bipolar disorder,Post traumatic Stress Disorder and Addiction. 

I highly recommend Brad Hoefs' book, Fresh Hope, for those suffering from mood disorders. Fresh Hope is an excellent resource that is informative and enlightening. It will bring insight to family and friends wanting to increase their understanding of their loved ones' mood disorders. Definitely a must read. Encouraging, explicit, resounding in truth...begin your own journey and allow God to redeem your pain and suffering into trophies of His wonderful grace. 


A graphic retelling of one girls struggle through a childhood leading up to a breakdown, ending in surviving an attempt on her own life. A true story; follow her through her journal pages and learn how she made it back from her suicide letter into the lifestyle of a functioning adult in a world with a stigma on mental illness. 

Read More




My Happy Sad Mummy is an engaging and sensitive picture book. It fills a major gap: explaining to a young child the impact on a parent of a major mental illness such as bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder affects between 1- 2% of the population and can affect young parents in particular as it usuall
y begins in late adolescence.


So often it's hard to know how to help friends who are having mental health problems. Marja's book offers a way. Reflections for our Highs and Lows, richly illustrated with colour photographs, makes an ideal gift. When she began to write these twenty-eight devotionals she had people in mind who were suffering in this way. However, the thoughts she expresses are words of truth for everyone, no matter what they are experiencing in life. Marja brings an understanding to her writing that comes from having lived with bipolar disorder since 1965. 

Read More


Our hand-made beaded bracelet represents IBPF and its cause. Each bracelet is hand beaded onto an elastic band with a copper BEAD RELIEF tag. Each bracelet is $6.00 and 25% of your purchase goes to the International Bipolar Foundation.


Bracelets come in three sizes, 6, 7, 8 inches (S,M,L). Select your size!

Order Here
My name is Dr. Mark Matthews. I am a researcher at Cornell University where we are looking at the use of technology by people like yourself who have bipolar disorder. This questionnaire will help my colleagues and me better understand your use of technology which will in turn inform our design of computer tools for people with bipolar disorder.
Please read this form carefully before agreeing to take part in the study.


Sharp Mesa Vista is currently enrolling men and women aged 18-75 with a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder for outpatient clinical trials. Eligible participants may receive all study-related care at no cost, and may be reimbursed for time and travel. Participation is confidential and trials are safely conducted under the supervision of experienced physicians and research specialists. For more information, or to see if you qualify for a study, contact

Tonya Bell, RN at 858-836-8373 or

Learn More Here

If you are:
  • Between the ages of 21 and 65
  • Have a diagnosis of bipolar disorder

You are invited to participate in this research study to see how effective the MoodSwings website is at improving the well-being of people with bipolar disorder.



How to Participate

To determine if you are eligible, you will first be asked a few questions on the phone.

You will also be interviewed in person and have a physical exam to make sure it is safe for you to participate.

If you are interested, please call our study coordinator at

(631) 638-2053 



To be eligible you must:

-Be between the ages of 18 and 65

-Have a diagnosis of bipolar disorder

-not use drugs or drink a lot of alcohol


If you choose to participate, you will have a brain scan to measure certain receptors in the brain that may be related to bipolar disorder.  You will be paid a possible total of $400 or more. (HIC 1101007933)


If you are interested and think you may be eligible please call our study coordinator at


The UCSD Department of Psychiatry is seeking volunteers for a research study involving genetics and medication response in Bipolar Disorder.

You may be eligible to participate in the study if you:
*are at least 18 years of age
*have been diagnosed with Bipolar 1 Disorder
*are willing to take Lithium for mood stabilization

To learn more about the study, please call: 858-642-3590
or, visit our website here 

BEAM is a comprehensive, early-intervention treatment program for Bipolar I Disorder which uses strength-based services to create a two-year plan designed specifically to put individuals and families back on track.

To be eligible for the BEAM program, participants must:

*Have a diagnosis of Bipolar I Disorder *Have experienced one manic episode

  but no more than three; and
*Be 14-35 or younger;
*Be a San Francisco or San Mateo County Resident *Have Any health insurance (or      uninsured) 

Learn More Here
 December Play in 
Lafayette, Indianna


When mental illness comes home the whole family has special needs. Actress and writer Anne Pasquale tells you a true story of her family, through crisis, craziness, laughter, tears and triumph.

Purchase tickets here


December 9th, 2014
Los Angeles, California
10th InternationalCongress of the INA
Oct 14-16, 2015
Jerusalem, Israel
March 3-6, 2015
March 22-25, 2015
Tampa, Florida
March 30, 2015
National CouncilConference
April 20-22, 2015
Orlando, Florida
Mental HealthAwarenessMonth
May 2015
ISBD Annual Conference
June 3-6, 2015
Torronto, Canada
July 2015
United States


About the International Bipolar Foundation

International Bipolar Foundation is a not for profit organization based in San Diego whose mission is to improve understanding and treatment of Bipolar Disorder through research; to promote care and support services for individuals and caregivers; and to erase associated stigma through education.

International Bipolar Foundation is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Never disregard professional advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or received from the International Bipolar Foundation.

Visit us online for more information:

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.