As misunderstood as depression, anxiety, and obsessive-compulsive disorder are, bipolar disorder may be even more surrounded by bad information and lazy takes. That can make it hard for people with a bipolar disorder diagnosis to learn about their own condition, and it can make it hard for friends and family to be supportive.
But, as part of a larger groundswell of mental health awareness, more and more famous, successful people have opened up about their experiences with bipolar disorder. We've collected a few of them here. Some of them have handled their illness better than others. Some of been fantastic advocates, and others have spread some less-than-helpful information. We tried to focus on people who have had successful struggles and been positive advocates, but everyone's battle with mental illness looks different, and we'd be remiss not to acknowledge that.
As an important aside - you'll notice that we say "person with bipolar disorder" rather than "a bipolar person". It's a subtle difference, but within the mental health community, it's an important one. Counselors and clinics don't like to talk about people as though their illness defines them. The general preference is to put their personhood first, followed by a diagnosis. A person with bipolar disorder is much, much more than just that one thing, and we want our language to reflect that.