The New Bipolar Planet Bookstore

January 15, 2014

Change Your Brain, Change Your Life An Unquiet Mind Manic: A Memoir The Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide Bipolar Disorder Your Drug May Be Your Problem Touched with Fire The Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide The Bipolar Workbook Page 2 Page3 Shopping Cart The New Bipolar Planet Bookstore Page3 Image Map

HBO – Temple Grandin

February 19, 2010

HBO has made a movie about the life of Dr. Temple Grandin, author of "Thinking in Pictures," the autobiography of an autistic woman. Dr. Grandin is an expert in animal husbandry whose specialty is humane treatment of animals in the cattle industry. The movie is a must see. Preorder Temple Grandin from

Starring Claire Danes, Julia Ormond, Catherine O’Hara and David Strathairn, Temple Grandin paints a picture of a young woman’s perseverance and determination while struggling with the isolating challenges of autism at a time when it was still quite unknown. The film chronicles Temple’s early diagnosis; her turbulent growth and development during her school years; the enduring support she receied from her mother (Ormond) , aunt (O’Hara) and her science teacher (Strathairn); and her emergence as a woman with an innate sensitiviity and understanding of animal behavior.
HBO Movies, Temple Grandin

Hiding Divya

February 6, 2007

Bipolar Disorder Daily News Blog: New South Asian (India) Film on Bipolar Disorder

Hiding Divya is an English-language film about the stigma against the mental ill in New York/North Jersey Philipino-Indian communities.

It’s a must-see.

If I Only Had a Brain

May 1, 2006

You’re out of the woods,
You’re out of the dark,
You’re out of the night.
Step into the sun, Step into the light.

Keep straight ahead for the most glorious place
On the Face of the Earth or the sky.
Hold onto your breath, Hold onto your heart, Hold onto your hope.
March up to the gate and bid it open…………….open.

From The Wizard of Oz,
Optimistic Voices,
lyrics by EH Harburg and music by Harold Arlen

Check it out: Dr. Charles K. Bunch PhD, the author of “Soft Bipolar : Vivid Thoughts, Mood Shifts and Swings, Depression, and Anxiety of the Mild Mood Disorders Affecting Millions of Americans” has put out a new book about cinematherapy, how to use the metaphors in popular cinema as a vehicle for healing.

And what more powerful movie than The Wizard of Oz? Admit it, you saw it every year for the first ten years of your life and can recite it from memory. You undoubtedly have at one time or another used the characters in the movies as metaphor. Never mind the man behind the curtain! Well, Dr. Bunch’s new book, The Wizard of Oz: The Symbolic Quest to Find Your Inner Heroes, Face Your Worst Enemy, and Attain Wholeness, will help you use the archetypes present in any movie to understand yourself and the world around you.

I ordered it from Amazon as soon as I heard about it. I’m sure it will be excellent.

Jessica Wants an MRI

April 1, 2006

This is an expansion on a comment I left on The Zucchini Patch.

I think they use PET scans for what you want to do. An MRI isn’t capable of telling the difference between a live brain and a dead brain. It can, however, spot a shrunken hippocampus or amygdala or anomalies in the blood vessels.

An fMRI can see more. They can use tagged glucose or neurotransmitters, whatever they want to study. The fMRI shows where the substance concentrates in the brain, where it is used the most. The NIMH has information about this.

It’s all still under investigation, though. The fMRI is not ready to be used to diagnose.

Did you know that in ADHD, the harder the person tries to concentrate, the more the prefrontal cortex shuts down? Oddly enough, motor areas of the brain work harder at the same time. Can’t we just find a way to teach these kids that will fit with that kind of brain response? Running around in circles shouting out calculus problems, perhaps?

Apologies to my friends of the hyperactive persuasion.

Somewhere in this computer I have a letter I wrote to one of the scientists in the movie “What the Bleep Do We Know!?” who works down at Penn. I met him at the preview and asked him a few questions to correct some of my assumptions in writing the “Putting the Genie Back Into the Bottle” article. The study I was interested in was over, unfortunately. (Yes, dogs and cats *do* have Broca’s and Wernickes areas – it’s not just defined by function, it’s a physical location.)

I have an MRI of my head hanging on the wall next the the desk This is your brain on bipolar to remind me that I have a brain – you can see it, the small pea-sized thing in the center of the glob of mush. 😉 Several years ago I made an animation out of the scan through the layers. Where the hell did I put that?

Oh, here. I see that this one is from after I had my sinuses repaired in uhhhhh 1996 or thereabouts. Refresh the page to see the animation. My favorite part is the eye stalks. We must have had crustacean ancestors.

When did they decide that the Rorschacht test and the MMPI diagnose bipolar disorder? Bipolar isn’t a personality disorder, it’s a mood disorder. My last psychologist told me that when they modified the inkblot test, it was not longer useful in diagnosing borderline personality disorder, either. I question the whole thing at this point.

I took one years ago. The psychologist took my money out of pocket twice a week for over a year and wasn’t able to catch the bipolar disorder. When we did the inkblot test, I thought about what I’d been reading in the psychology books and created a mindset before we started. He had seascapes all over the walls so I picked an undersea theme – so that undersea pictures would be the first thing to pop off the paper at me. Dancing crabs, an octopus in a Jester’s cap. That sort of thing. The MMPI and the Thematic Apperception test were similarly transparent. And drawing pictures of my house and my family and myself. It might have been easier if I didn’t read so damn much. I read a lot more then than I do now.

Anyway, that’s what you want, a functional MRI rather than a plain old MRI.