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International Bipolar Foundation
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On March 11, 2014 International Bipolar Foundation and Practical Recovery will host a free mental health event on Of Mind and Men: Mental Health, Addiction and Hope, with keynote speaker, Dr. Tom Jensen and moderator, Dr. Tom Horvath.

Dr. Tom Jensen graduated Summa Cum Laude from UCSD with a Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry. After obtaining his degree in Medicine from UCLA, Jensen did his residency at UCSD followed by a Child Psychiatry fellowship at Stanford University. Throughout his career, Dr. Jensen was a department chair, has written several medical articles, has been interviewed by news and radio, spoken to over 100 different organizations, was President of the San Diego Chapter of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, held positions as both assistant and associate professor and has received several awards including the American Psychiatric Association (APA) Distinguished Fellow and a Special Presidential Commendation from the APA.

Tom Horvath, Ph.D., a board certified clinical psychologist (ABPP), earned a B.A. in Liberal Arts from St. John’s College, Annapolis, Maryland, and a Ph.D. from the California School of Professional Psychology at San Diego. After serving as an active duty Navy psychologist, in 1985 he founded Practical Recovery, which offers a self-empowering alternative to 12-step addiction treatment, including residential treatment, sober living, and outpatient services. Dr. Horvath is a past president and fellow of the San Diego Psychological Association, past president of the Society of Addiction Psychology (Division 50) of the American Psychological Association, the long-standing president of SMART Recovery, and a board member of Moderation Management and Faces and Voices of Recovery. He is author of Sex, Drugs, Gambling & Chocolate: A Workbook for Overcoming Addictions, and a co-author (with Beck, Liese, and Newman) of the forthcoming Cognitive Therapy of Addiction (2nd ed.).

Join us for an evening of education and awareness concerning men’s mental health and addiction issues.

Who should attend: Professionals, healthcare providers, educators, students, consumers, caregivers and the general public. Location:

Janssen R&D, LLC

3210 Merryfield Row San Diego, CA 92121
Event and Parking are free

Networking and refreshments: 5:30-6:30 PM
Lecture will begin at 6:30 PM, followed by a panel discussion and Q&A.

R.S.V.P Required at http://tinyurl.com/mm2wgyd

International Bipolar Foundation (IBPF), formerly known as California Bipolar Foundation, was founded in June 2007 in San Diego, California by four parents with children affected by bipolar disorder. Well aware of the trauma that bipolar disorder causes for consumers and their families, these parents felt compelled to do something constructive to help. The mission of IBPF is to improve understanding and treatment of bipolar disorder through research; to promote care and support resources for individuals and caregivers; and to erase stigma through education.

Practical Recovery is a self-empowering (non-12-step) addiction treatment system in San Diego. Treatment services are completely personalized for each client, for any addiction, at any level of care. Treatment includes both evidence-based methods and optional holistic healing services, with an emphasis on underlying problems, motivation, relationships, lifestyle balance and living with purpose and meaning.

World Bipolar Day (WBD) will be celebrating its inaugural year on March 30th, the birthday of Vincent Van Gogh, who was posthumously diagnosed as probably having bipolar disorder. The vision of WBD is to bring world awareness to bipolar disorders and eliminate social stigma. Through international collaboration the goal of World Bipolar Day is to bring the world population information about bipolar disorders that will educate and improve sensitivity towards the illness.

Bipolar Disorder is a mental illness that represents a significant challenge to patients, health care workers, family members and our communities. While growing acceptance of bipolar disorder as a medical condition, like diabetes and heart disease, has taken hold in some parts of the world, unfortunately the stigma associated with the illness is a barrier to care and continues to impede early diagnosis and effective treatment. In order to address the disparity in how bipolar disorder is viewed in different parts of the world, the Asian Network of Bipolar Disorder (ANBD),the International Bipolar Foundation (IBPF), and the International Society for Bipolar Disorders (ISBD) came together to work on the concept of a world bipolar day.

Willem Nolen, current President of the ISBD, shares his enthusiasm about this initiative.

“When the ANBD, who came up with the idea, approached the ISBD we immediately decided that we should support it actively. The initiative helps to achieve our goals to improve the lives of bipolar patients and their relatives. We immediately invited the IBPF to join in the initiative and are excited to work with such a great group of organizations. I am confident that World Bipolar Day will grow in the upcoming years and will help reduce stigma.”

Muffy Walker, Founder and President of IBPF, said the following when asked why she felt it important to be involved with WBD,

“As Martin Luther King once said, I have a dream that one day our nations will rise up and create all men equal. And I have a dream that my son, who has lived most of his life with bipolar disorder, will one day live in a nation where he will not be judged by his illness, but rather by the content of his character. I believe that World Bipolar Day will help bring my dream to fruition.”

Manuel Sanchez de Carmona, ISBD President-Elect, believes that,

“WBD is an excellent opportunity for us [ISBD members] to reach out to patients, families and advocacy groups to invite them to work together on this global project to sensitize and bring awareness to bipolar disorders. WBD is a platform to think global and act local – our vision will be attained with a motivated and strong local effort.”

It is estimated that the global prevalence of bipolar disorder is between 1 and 2% and has been said to be as high as 5% and, according to the World Health Organization, is the 6th leading cause of disability in the world. In order to address this global problem, we need a global solution. With support from leading experts from around the world, groups like ANBD, IBPF, and ISBD are supporting efforts to investigate biological causes, targets for drug treatment, better treatments, better methods of diagnosis, the genetic components of the illness, and strategies for living well with bipolar disorder and this is just the beginning. Collaborations between research and advocacy groups are continuing to grow, and WBD is a tribute to the success of this strategy.

Christine Saenz, a patient and blogger, explains,

“I am so excited about this project and its message. It is so important to educate the world and fight the stigma that is associated with mental illness. Bipolar does not have to be scary. I am the face of Bipolar. I am just like everyone else. With the right treatment plan, I am able to live a stable and happy life.”

As the day draws near we encourage you to organize and publicize local events, which can be shared with the world through distribution on the WBD Facebook page (www.facebook.com/worldbipolarday). While a permanent home on the web has not yet been established, in the interim, ISBD will host your announcements on a special section of our website devoted to WBD. The WBD page will ultimately host press releases for these events, as well as provide a place to post photos, stories and share inspiration with others who share the vision of WBD.

For more information about WBD, or for any questions, comments, or event announcements, please contact Jill Olds at jillo@isbd.org.

Anti Stigma Campaign:

When it comes to mental health conditions, silence is not golden. Silence breeds stigma, and stigma hurts: it prevents people from seeking life-saving treatment and support. That’s why the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) and the International Bipolar Foundation (IBPF) have joined forces to promote Say It Forward 2013, an email and social media anti-stigma campaign that educates people about the reality of mental health conditions.

“Although much progress has been made to change attitudes about mental health conditions, many still acknowledge discomfort towards people with mental illnesses,” explains Scott Suckow, Executive Director of the International Bipolar Foundation. “These perceptions lag behind those of other health conditions, such as diabetes and cancer. Through campaigns like Say it Forward, we can separate myth from fact and help those facing mental health issues feel comfortable seeking care and support.”

HERE IS HOW IT WORKS: Click on the link below to get started. We have put together several myths and facts about mental health conditions to help you educate your friends, family, and colleagues–and we’ve tailored them for email, Facebook and Twitter! Try all three to reach as many individuals as you can! We will be tracking how many people the campaign reaches and educates during the week leading up to National Bipolar Awareness Day. The campaign will run from Monday September 30, through Thursday October 10. Please help us reach our goal of 20,000 people this year!

Now SAY IT FORWARD at SayItForwardCampaign.org!

It will take us all working together to undo negative perceptions about those who suffer with mental illness.

Thank you!

International Bipolar Foundation


Webinars & Seminars:

Get info on upcoming webinars and seminars on our website!

All lectures are videotaped and available for viewing on our website http://www.internationalbipolarfoundation.org/ibpf-educational-videos*

It’s FINALLY here!!!!
International Bipolar Foundation is proud to announce the release of our book:
Healthy Living with Bipolar Disorder
The book is geared to both the person with bipolar disorder and their caregivers. Fourteen chapters, each written by an expert in the field, are included in a 3-ring binder.

The Consumer Advisory Board for IBPF felt it was important for people to have an easily accessible “compendium” of information. The binder format allows users to add handouts from their mental health providers and update chapters without having to order a new book.

Healthy Living with Bipolar Disorder is broken into 3-sections;

1. About Bipolar Disorder including chapters on children & adolescents, suicide, substance abuse, medication treatment, stigma and pregnancy
2. Healthy Living includes chapters on family life and relationships, nutrition, spirituality and faith, the workplace, college, social interactions and the caregiver
3. Resources including Medication Charts (English & Spanish), Medication Side Effect Checklist, Mood Chart, Exercise Journal, Food Log, Doctor Contact Sheet, Questions to Ask Your Doctor, and U.S. and International Mental Health Resources.

In addition to these information rich chapters, the book has country-specific chapters written by consumers and professionals from countries around the world. There are currently eight such chapters with more being added weekly.

This book is available free of charge to you! Go to our web site www.InternationalBipolarFoundation.org

Interpersonal and Social Rhythm Therapy for Patients with Bipolar Disorder
Join us for a Webinar on July 23 at 9:00am PST
Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:


Ellen Frank is Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry and Professor of Psychology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Director of the Depression and Manic Depression Prevention program at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic.

Frank and her colleagues have developed and tested a series of adaptations of interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT) including maintenance IPT, brief IPT, and interpersonal and social rhythm therapy for the treatment of bipolar disorder which has now been adapted for both group and individual treatment of both bipolar and unipolar disorders. She recently completed a study with researchers at the University of Pisa, Italy, aimed at achieving a better understanding of the clinical importance of subsyndromal mood and anxiety conditions and their impact on the outcome of interpersonal psychotherapy and SSRI for depression. She is currently working with colleagues throughout France to establish a network of expert centers for the treatment of bipolar disorder.

An expert in mood disorders and their treatment, Frank was Chair of the Food and Drug Administration Psychopharmacologic Drugs Advisory Panel. She also is a former member of the U.S. National Advisory Mental Health Council. She currently serves on the Mood Disorders Workgroup of the American Psychiatric Association Task Force on DSM-5 and is an Honorary Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. In 1999, Dr. Frank was elected to the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine.

Dr. Frank has over 400 peer-reviewed publications in psychiatric journals.

A graduate of Vassar College, Frank earned a master’s degree in English at Carnegie Mellon University and a doctorate in psychology at the University of Pittsburgh.


Interpersonal and Social Rhythm Therapy for Patients with Bipolar Disorder

Date: Monday, July 23, 2012

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PST

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

System Requirements
PC-based attendees
Required: Windows® 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server
Macintosh®-based attendees
Required: Mac OS® X 10.5 or newer

International Bipolar Foundation has been invited back for the 2nd time as an official charity for the 2013 Tri-City Medical Center Carlsbad Marathon & Half.
Please support us and our team, the Stigma Busters, by raising $15,000 between now and January! The goal of the International Bipolar Foundation is to continue to make a difference in the lives of those affected by bipolar disorder. With the help of donations from supporters such as you we will continue to see the changes and improvements.


Corporate Anti Stigma Campaign
International Bipolar Foundation endorses a society that is free from the negative stigma and discrimination of mental illness.

If you agree with our position statement and wish to join our campaign, please fill out the following:
(You hereby agree that you have authority to act on behalf of your business)
Contact Information: e: t:
___ I hereby give permission to IBPF to publish my/company name as a participant in this campaign
We understand the negative impact that stigma and discrimination has towards people living with mental illnesses, those who care for them and as a society at large.

We recognize that stigma and discrimination
• affects the basic human rights of those living with mental health challenges, including their right to be treated with dignity and respect,
• serves as an impediment to live full, meaningful and productive lives in the community,
• hinders recognition, open acknowledgement, and effective management and recovery of their lives,
• affects the allocation of resources for effective diagnostic, treatment and community support services,
And we support and participate in this campaign so that ultimately, discrimination is
eliminated and stigma is not tolerated.

8895 Towne Centre Drive * Suite 105-360 * San Diego * CA * 92122

Recommendations (not required actions):
1. To have an Anti-Discrimination Policy which is reviewed and signed by all employees/volunteers.
Example: The employer is an “equal opportunity employer.” The employer will not discriminate and will take “affirmative action” measures to ensure against discrimination in employment, recruitment, advertisements for employment, compensation, termination, upgrading, promotions, and other conditions of employment against any employee or job applicant on the bases of race, creed, color, national origin, medical conditions (mental or physical) or sex.
2. Participate in $5 Dress Down Day; employees who donate $5 to IBPF are granted a dress down day as
per company policy. Funds collected are used in our anti-stigma campaign.
3. To be an active Myth-Buster
Myth #1: Psychiatric disorders are not true medical illnesses like heart disease and diabetes. People who have a mental illness are just “crazy.”
Fact: Brain disorders, like heart disease and diabetes, are legitimate medical illnesses.
Research shows there are genetic and biological causes for psychiatric disorders, and they can be treated effectively.
Myth #2: People with a severe mental illness, such as schizophrenia, are usually
dangerous and violent.
Fact: Statistics show that the incidence of violence in people who have a brain disorder is not much higher than it is in the general population. Those suffering from a psychosis such as schizophrenia are more often frightened, confused and despairing than violent.
Myth #3: Mental illness is the result of bad parenting.
Fact: Most experts agree that a genetic susceptibility, combined with other risk factors, leads to a psychiatric disorder. In other words, mental illnesses have a physical cause.
Myth #4: Depression results from a personality weakness or character flaw, and people who are depressed could just snap out of it if they tried hard enough.
8895 Towne Centre Drive * Suite 105-360 * San Diego * CA * 92122
Fact: Depression has nothing to do with being lazy or weak. It results from changes in brain chemistry or brain function, and medication and/or psychotherapy often help people to recover.
Myth #5: Schizophrenia means split personality, and there is no way to control it.
Fact: Schizophrenia is often confused with multiple personality disorder. Actually, schizophrenia is a brain disorder that robs people of their ability to think clearly and logically. The estimated 2.5 million Americans with schizophrenia have symptoms ranging from social withdrawal to hallucinations and delusions. Medication has helped many of these individuals to lead fulfilling, productive lives.
Myth #6: Depression is a normal part of the aging process.
Fact: It is not normal for older adults to be depressed. Signs of depression in older people include a loss of interest in activities, sleep disturbances and lethargy.
Depression in the elderly is often undiagnosed, and it is important for seniors and their family members to recognize the problem and seek professional help.
Myth #7: Depression and other illnesses, such as anxiety disorders, do not affect children or adolescents. Any problems they have are just a part of growing up.
Fact: Children and adolescents can develop severe mental illnesses. In the United States, one in ten children and adolescents has a mental disorder severe enough to cause impairment. However, only about 20 percent of these children receive needed treatment. Left untreated, these problems can get worse. Anyone talking about suicide should be taken very seriously.
Myth #8: If you have a mental illness, you can will it away. Being treated for a psychiatric disorder means an individual has in some way “failed” or is weak.
Fact: A serious mental illness cannot be willed away. Ignoring the problem does not make it go away, either. It takes courage to seek professional help.
Myth #9: Addiction is a lifestyle choice and shows a lack of willpower. People with a substance abuse problem are morally weak or “bad”.
Fact: Addiction is a disease that generally results from changes in brain chemistry. It has nothing to do with being a “bad” person.
Myth #10: Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), formerly known as “shock treatment,” is painful and barbaric.
Fact: ECT has given a new lease on life to many people who suffer from severe and debilitating depression. It is used when other treatments such as psychotherapy or medication fail or cannot be used. Patients who receive ECT are asleep and under anesthesia, so they do not feel anything.
(source: National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression (NARSAD) )
4. To use respectful Language don’t use generic labels:“retarded”, “our mentally ill” don’t use psychiatric diagnoses as metaphors: “schizophrenic situation” don’t use offensive words: “psycho”, “loony”, “crazy”, “wacko”, “slow”, “crackpot” don’t refer to a person as a diagnosis: “he’s bipolar”, instead say, “he has bipolar disorder
5. Praise those who combat discrimination and stigma
6. Report those who are discriminatory and not respectful of differences International Bipolar Foundation thanks you for your support.
Our mission is to eliminate bipolar disorder through the
advancement of research; to promote and enhance care & support
services; and to erase associated stigma through public education.
8895 Towne Centre Drive * Suite 105-360 * San Diego * CA * 92122

Mental Health Awareness Patch Launched for Girl Scouts

A Mental Health Awareness Patch, designed for the Girl Scouts by International Bipolar Foundation, was launched last month in San Diego county.
Part of the mission of the International Bipolar Foundation (IBPF) is to erase stigma associated with bipolar disorder through public education. With nearly 30,000 Girl Scouts in the San Diego Council, the opportunity exists to help teach troop leaders and scouts learn about mental health and illness. “Our leaders are hungry for information related to ability awareness,” states Jo Dee Jacob, San Diego Council CEO of the Girl Scouts of the United States. Young girls today struggle with issues such as cyber-bullying, depression, anorexia, and self-harm.
What better match for IBPF’s mission to eradicate ignorance and stigma than young, eager-to-learn girls who will become our nation’s next leaders? In fact, Ms. Jacob quoted, “Nearly 2/3 of today’s women leaders were once Girl Scouts, and 82% of high achieving Girl Scout alumnae credit the organization with playing a positive role in their development.”
International Bipolar Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission is to eliminate bipolar disorder through the advancement of research; to promote and enhance care and support services; and to erase associated stigma through public education.
Bipolar Disorder, also known as manic-depression, is a treatable brain illness marked by extreme changes in mood, thought, energy, and behavior. It affects approximately 5.7 million adult Americans annually, or about 2.6% of the U.S. population age 18 and older. (NIMH)
If you, or someone you know is interested in working on the patch, please contact areitzin@internationalbipolarfoundation.org or call 858.342.0327. To learn more about Girl Scouts, San Diego Council, please visit www.girlscoutssdi.org or call 1-800-643-4798.

Our Lecture Series are now available for viewing on our website!!

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