a farsighted, generous donor 2 psych research

I hate to be morbid again but I read an incredible tale of someone furthering our cause. I say he was farsighted because in 1988, his son, a college junior at the time, was successfully treated for bipolar disorder with lithium, graduated college and had a career.

His father had watched him unravel when the New York City police found him naked, raving, and penniless in the streets. How could someone decompensate that fast?

The father’s name was Ted Stanley, who had made a fortune in tchotchkes in the 70’s. He died in Early December.

Over the course of his life, he donated more than 800 million dollars to psychiatric research, mostly to the Broad  Institute, an innovative biomedical research center in Cambridge Massachusetts.

For all we know, Stanley’s son Jonathan, may have gone through ups and downs like we do and possibly side effect fallout. It’s possible.

I’m just wondering, since his son was supposedly stabilized, what led him to want to advance our cause and fund it into the ‘modern molecular and genetic age’ as quoted by the founding director of the institute.

By now many of you know genetic testing is ‘standard of care’ at Mayo Clinics worldwide, no matter what health condition you have. If you walk in their doors and are treated, you’ll be tested for which drug, in any given class, is most compatible with your genetics and metabolism.

This heralds a new era for more precise medication and less ‘waiting and seeing’ if and when our psych meds are going to kick in.

As of now it’s estimated if a psych patient gets a first prescription for a psych med, they have a 33 1/3 chance of it being a home run.

I’ve been lucky in this regard although I have more ‘med fatigue’ than most. My antidepressants, since the Prozac that worked for a decade, usually stop working after a year and a half.

The great thing is medicine is always evolving and looking to improve. There’s too much money involved for it NOT to be.

His son, Jonathan is proud of his father’s legacy and said “My Dad got it Right,” according to the Times’ report.

I’m Proud to blog for IBPF and NAMI

I’ve been lucky in that somehow I’ve been picked up as a blogger by International Bipolar Disorder and NAMI but truly for every four submissions I send out to other digital publications, only one gets picked up. I got really close to being picked up by Bipolar Magazine’s digital arm, “Bipolar Hope.” They take a lot of drug company money in terms of advertising and I challenged them by sending a Tardive Dyskinesia story. If I had really wanted the twice monthly opportunity, I should have sent them a glossier blog on a ‘shiny happy people’ (REM song) topic. See, IBPF has the distinction of being totally independent financially from the drug companies, so we bloggers can be a bit more truthful, blunt, even, if the subject is so. But we balance it out by emphasizing that it does get better.

The rest of my submissions are rejected for one reason or another. There was Stigma fighters, I guess that evaluating my 25 year struggle on paper I told too many stories and talked about meds too much. When you develop Tardive Dyskinesia, Sexual Side Effects, Terrible Constipation, Constant hunger and Metabolic syndrome (half-way to diabetes thru no fault of my own…I eat good am very active and slender) it’s pretty hard to ignore the challenges and victories over those problems like they don’t exist,

I mean think about this: How many of us have gained or watched a loved one weight and not be able to lose it after being put on psych meds? There are advances in Western Science and Alternative solutions too, and I want to write about my journey. After all, I’m still alive and pretty happy.

Then there was the ‘seeds of hope’ submission and they objected to too much personal narrative and not enough of a “we can conquer thru ideology” presentation. So I’ve realized that in all this advocacy, I have to nurture myself, focus on what’s really important and develop a thick skin. And to stick to my own platforms, like this blog and the book I am writing. Does anyone else out there ‘feel’ me?