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breakdown of the middle ground.

Coming out of an entirely different closet…the one of mental illness

Unfortunately as prevalent as mental health disorders are the nation (50+ million diagnosed in the US alone) and world wide, it still tops the ranks as the most difficult to admit.

Higher than revealing to be a victim of domestic abuse, sexual assault, or molestation, harder than confessing a drinking problem or previous bankruptcy; surveys have even shown it to more difficult than admitting ones gender identity or homosexuality. Sufferers face significant social taboos. And it doesn’t affect just one type of person. Mental illness knows nothing of age, race, gender, or economic background.

You don’t have to personally admit it yourself to believe the notion the reality that people are more likely to break off, or not even start, a relationship with someone with mental issues -which I for one find particularly interesting because members of society are more likely to stay with someone with a physical disability. People with mental disorders tend to prefer to hide their illness like major depression and anxiety, because unlike people with physical illnesses, people with mental disorders must also fear being rejected by family & friends, harassed, fired or not hired, or denied child custody—just for starters.

Please check out this personal blog discussing the Price of being Bipolar in Public)

Last week I had an entire conversation with a friend about them being practically afraid to admit their Christian faith at their workplace because of the negative assumptions his non-same faith based peers might think about his character or behavior.

Once you know someone’s religious preference it changes your whole personality to people who don’t agree with you. Sometimes it’s like every negative image or thought they have about it becomes who I am as a person- even though I haven’t changed. It’s their behavior towards me that has.

I’ve read more than a few articles of a biracial person attempting, or enjoying the ability to pass for one race over another—not because they have a problem with it necessarily themselves, but because other people do.

Sometimes it’s like every negative stereotype or prejudice they have against a race I share membership of encompasses who I am as a person. Granted racism is an ongoing issue for those of one race, but it is just as prevalent towards those of plural heritage.

Sexual orientation discrimination —don’t even get me started.

(great message board discussion here coming coming out as gay with coming out as bipolar)

Mental illness sufferers are also victims of discrimination and the issue continually needs to be recognized.

“I’m Asian, I’m gay, and I have faced discrimination – but not for the reasons most people think; it was actually when I got depression that I faced most discrimination.”

(Quote from an article in the Guardian)

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Filed under: bi-polar, Eliza Barnett, , , , , ,

I like to read books where the main character has the same name as me? What you don’t??

Such blogging slackers we are–on my!!

My post actually has to do with a website update. I work at a bookstore and the other day as one of my co-workers and I were talking about the latest books we’d read she starting gushing about the new (crazy popular!) young adult title Red Pyramid, by Rick Riordan (author of the Last Olympian series as well). I tend to steer clear of that genre myself, but what grabbed me the description of the main two characters. The fast paced plot follows two biracial children on this crazy magical quest.

So first I’m like awesome—the main characters are biracial.

Double score was the fact that as a twist of fate, each child looks only like the race of one of their parents. RING ANY BELLS HERE?? Immediately I’m like hey that reminds me of the article I wrote here about biracial twins born favoring only one parent in skin tone. I note to myself, put this on the topical book list asap!!

Doing that, then reminded me that here at BiFactor we’ve really slacked on getting our topical books put up. So I really wanted all of us to really get cracking on that. We’re been a bit off on it because we really want a variety of books. Not just like self help style books—but books of all styles and formats. I know when I read I am super drawn to what I like for particular reasons. I’m a budding journalist and I love reading mystery books about other women pursuing reporting positions as well. I’m a girly girl, and my heroines half the time are too. I like stories where the character has the same name as me, and if I’m lucky—also lives in Los Angeles, or Florida (my favorite vacation destination!) we like what we like right?! Now mind you I’m quite a huge time reader who simply loves written word, so granted that’s not all I read you get what I mean right? Who doesn’t like reading about something they can personally relate to?

I read this recently on a biracial themed blog, and I couldn’t agree more:

Recently, a reader asked me if I had any recommendations for books with biracial children as the characters.  I’ve always had trouble finding books like that, and it is also why long ago I decided that I would write a series of children’s books with my little Moriah as the main character–from board book to chapter book, then adding her little brother as he comes along (he’ll also have his own books).  The reader’s question confirmed the notion that there is a market for these books, and that I am not the only person having trouble finding books that are based on interracial families. Typically, most books are related to adoption, or have animals as the characters. These books also tend to focus on an issue (e.g. hair or skin color), rather than just being a “normal” children’s story with a character/family that is biracial/interracial. I think its best not to make race the central theme.

Scouring online data bases, lists, and recommendations we’ve all compiled starter lists of books I hope you will enjoy. Fiction books with bipolar protagonists, complex romances that explore the dynamics of bisexual relationships, and plenty of memoirs, and biographies to boot as well. So please refer to the right side of your screen folks, because each sub-category has a topical books link, where I hope you’ll find something enjoyable to read. More to come! We welcome additional titles you know of as well!!

–Posted by Maggie Barnes

Filed under: bi-polar, bi-racial, bi-sexual, Maggie Barnes, , , , ,

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