Bipolar Treatment with Art and Music

Articles and blog posts relating to the treatment of bipolar disorder through the creative arts - music, dance and visual and performing arts.

Blogs and Articles

Shelby Tweten: Candid Recovery

Linda Childers
August 7, 2014

For Shelby Tweten, the TV talent show ‘American Idol’ became a national springboard to fight stigma By Linda Childers   When Shelby Tweten sang “Temporary Home” at the American Idol auditions, she brought pop diva Jennifer Lopez to tears. There’s something fitting about that, because music has always been Shelby’s outlet for oversized emotions she...


Writing and the Connection to Recovery

Karl Shallowhorn
June 20, 2014

Writing is incredibly therapeutic for me––regardless of whether it is beautiful poems of just a mish-mash of words. It helps me look back on the scope of my journey, and gives me hope for the future. I’ve been writing a blog for bp for two years. Over this time I’ve touched on a number of...


Really, I’m an Artist!

Beth Brownsberger Mader
March 15, 2014

Undiagnosed bipolar, and later dealing with bipolar itself, kept me from realizing my full potential as an artist. I am a highly trained visual artist. In fact, twenty-one years ago, I earned my master’s degree in printmaking & drawing from a good university, which qualifies me to teach at the college level, to place the...


Music: A Vital Part of Your Bipolar Treatment Plan

Melody Moezzi
September 23, 2013

In my experience, melody and movement represent two of the most therapeutic and yet misunderstood and underutilized resources when it comes to treating bipolar disorder. Over the years, plenty of mental health providers have recommend a healthy diet and exercise as vital components of my treatment plan. None, however, has ever recommended music. In fact,...


Art: A Therapeutic Outlet For Frustration & Anger

Melody Moezzi
June 10, 2013

When I’m faced with stigmatizing, demeaning comments from others I’ve found no better outlet for the negative emotions they inspire than art. Last week, I wrote an editorial for CNN’s belief blog about the hatred and bigotry faced by Muslim Americans these days. I’m used to receiving nasty comments on many of my pieces (though,...


Bipolar & The Power Of Medicinal Music

Ian Grey
September 7, 2012

Never deny the power of music and how it can improve your mood and ease your mind. I was about 14 when I had my first screaming, flailing, world-turned-upside-down terror attack. Sitting in the bedroom of my parents’ GI Bill house, I felt a bolt of noxious energy turn the air around me grainy, as...


Music Soothes the Savage Bipolar Beast

Bruce Goldstein
September 6, 2011

Everybody has their own diversified playlist. And everybody is playing whatever they’re in the mood for at that specific moment––it’s a beautiful thing. One minute I’m playing Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy, the next minute I’m rocking out to the Beastie Boys, “Brass Monkey.” I listen to all kinds of music. Rock n’ Roll...


Meg’s Story of Music & Mania

Robin L. Flanigan
February 1, 2011

How her art and music helped her mood, career, and recovery By Robin L. Flanigan   Meg  had been dealing with almost annual periods of depression for eight years, increasingly followed by bouts of elation and supercharged energy when, in May 2006, the acoustic musician went on a whirlwind European tour. She played ten shows...


Amanda’s Story: Healing Bipolar Disorder Through Music

Robin L. Flanigan
November 1, 2009

Insights on how a woman uses her talent for singing as therapy for her bipolar disorder.   Amanda remembers how difficult it was to be onstage at the Elbow River Casino in Calgary two days after Michael Jackson died. Still grieving the passing of one of her childhood heroes, the professional singer felt “heavy as lead...


Bipolar Disorder Goes Hollywood

Stephanie Stephens
August 1, 2009

Well researched by writers, meticulously ordered by directors and ethically acted, roles for characters with bipolar disorder pepper the screen. It’s the moment of unwelcome truth for Detective Elliot Stabler’s character on NBC’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Tension mounts in the scene in his daughter Kathleen’s hospital room: DR. PARNELL: Mr. and Mrs....


The Pen is Mightier Than Bipolar: Ysabel’s Story

Michelle Roberts
January 1, 2008

Ysabel is able to use her talent for writing to channel her bipolar thoughts- while blogging on important global issues.   By Michelle Roberts   Ysabel G. is no shrinking violet. That simple fact comes through loud and clear on her Web blog entitled “Empowering minds.” There, the 27-year-old college student fearlessly voices her thoughts...


Healing Through Art: Eric’s Story

Donna Jackel
May 1, 2007

Art is one of the key ways in which Eric is able to successfully manage his bipolar.   By Donna Jackel   Eric R. paints lush landscapes of the Canadian Maritimes in vibrant shades of blue, yellow and orange. The paintings capture the charm and beauty of the beaches, marshlands, forests and quaint fishing villages of New...


Snipping into the Scrapbooking Craze

Lisa Ianucci
January 1, 2007

Scrapbooking is a fun and healthy way to help you brighten up those long winter days. By Lisa Iannucci   Want a creative and fun activity to do this winter? Scrapbooking— which combines photos with journaling—is a perfect way to turn boxes of pictures into an unforgettable keepsake. Document events, create a family history, honor your...


The Link between Bipolar and Creativity

Stacie Z Berg
May 8, 2006

Is there really a connection between levels of creativity and bipolar disorder? There’s been a lot of buzz about the link between bipolar and creativity. Many researchers and some individuals with bipolar have jumped on the bandwagon of enthusiasm, spurred on by the 1993 book, Touched with Fire, in which, drawing on the lives of...