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July 4, 2005

Help Through a Support Group

A woman from Lillydale named anonymously as "Christine" says that she found her support group to be the most helpful thing when dealing with a diagnosis of bipolar disorder. Christine has been going to a support group called GROW for the last eight years and says that it helped her make the most out of her life.

The first step was to accept that she had a mental disorder which helped her begin to cope with it. It is hard to start the therapeutic process if one is in denial. Christine states that going to meetings is an important part of her weekly routine. She says that it helped her "intellectually, socially, and spiritually. Having a support group gives one a community that they are a part of.

"North-eastern regional field worker Kathy Bright said GROW was a 12-step program of personal growth aimed at building individual self-worth.

'We look at mental health strategies rather than dwell on mental illness,' Ms Bright said. 'Many don't realise this support is available. We want to get the message out to people that you can do it, but you cannot do it alone'" (Lillydale Express).

GROW is a group that helps those dealing with anxiety, depression, or low self esteem.

To find a support group for bipolar disorder in your area (only for the U.S.) go to: http://www.dbsalliance.org/info/findsupport.html You can check by zip code, it's very easy to use.

For more information on support groups for bipolar disorder go to: http://www.moodswing.org/supportgroups.html

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