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Online Support Groups

smiley Internationally Available to Anyone smiley


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Online Communities - "Where Love Grows"

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Please don't shy away from the idea of online support--read on and I'll provide you with the reasons why you really will miss the boat if you don't jump right in and participate in one of these (IRC, E-Mail & MOO) online support communities.

Cyber-friends don't care if you're still in bed with your laptop at 3:00 in the afternoon, they don't care if you haven't brushed your teeth or gotten dressed. Not a one will care if you speak their language fluently, are physically challenged, or are gay. None will ask what kind of car you drive, where your kids go to school, or if you earn any money at all. So you see, we care only about you and what's in your head--there are precious few places where you will ever experience such "unconditional positive regard" as you can here in cyberbia.

Not convinced yet? Well then just take my hand here and I'll take you to visit some of my friends so you can hear firsthand what they think about their respective homes on the net. Come on now; don't hang back--you'll love these folks as much as I once you hear what they have to say. Ready? Ok then, Let's Go!


eyes-right_image OPEN 24 HOURS A DAY! eyes-left_image

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One problem with being bipolar is that there is often no one rattling the rafters in the wee hours when you are dying to talk to someone who understands what you're going through. Online communities are open 24 hours a day, and much less expensive than a bar--safer too ;) When you've questions needing dragon_gifanswers, agonizing personal traumas to deal with, or just want friendly banter amongst your own kind, the online community offers it in abundance. Because of their anonymity, some very privacy-oriented individuals find these lists allow them the freedom to open up without fear of reprisal or rejection. So please, oh please, do give them a chance. Just follow the fairy fire lizard.

E-mail Support Groups

  1. FyrenIyce Email Support Group:
    An Australian Bipolar Support Group - open to all for now, but Australians are particularly encouraged to subscribe. FyrenIyce is limited to those who suffer from bipolar disorder, but significant others are encouraged to join one of the support groups below that are designed specifically to meet their needs. This list is the focal point of the FyrenIyce website, and yes, it's my baby. To subscribe to FyrenIyce simply follow the dragon.

  2. Stolen Youth --
    Stolen Youth is a support list for young people, run by young people. Many list members have been diagnosed with mental health problems of some sort. Some are survivors of physical, sexual or emotional abuse. Others have experienced only the "normal" stresses of "growing up". All, however, are struggling with emotional pain and confusion-- and helping each other through these struggles.


    To subscribe to Stolen Youth, send the following command (in the BODY of mail) to listserv@sjuvm.stjohns.edu

    subscribe S-YOUTH yourfirstname yourlastname


  3. Walkers In Darkness Email List:
    Walkers caters to both unipolar and bipolar persons. Unipolar means one is mostly at one extreme or the other of the great moodswing scale. Generally speaking, it is understood to denote depressives, since pure mania is all but unheard of. Alternative Walker's webpage

  4. BPSO Email List:
    If you can't reach their webpage where you can subscribe to the list on site, then send an email message to majordomo@ipl.co.uk with the words "subscribe bpso" in the body of the. Subject line may be left blank. This mailing list is for people who are in a relationship with a bipolar individual. Such relationships include, but are not necessarily limited to, spouses, significant others, parents, children, near relatives and close friends.

  5. Pendulum (aka Pendy)Email List:
    Pendy is currently closed and not accepting subscriptions at this time. You may be able to get on a waiting list, but I warn you that this is a very high traffic list and can be extremely overwhelming if you are unsure of yourself or wary of possible flames. You may want to start with a slightly lower traffic list like our own FyrenIyce or PUDD. Pendy's subscription address is: Majordomo@ucar.edu and follows the same form for subbing as do the previous lists. Irrespective of its closed status, you really must follow this link to the Pendy pages for they are exceptionally good. Off to Visit Pendulum

  6. Roses & Thorns (aka RaTS) Email list:
    Another online support group that accepts bipolar persons and their friends, relatives, etc. A bit raucus and high trafficky, but I've heard some good things about them so you may want to give them a try. To subscribe to the list, take a trip to the Roses & Thorns Website



Newsgroups

WARNING!! Newsgroups are not great support groups for the most part. They are rather loose organisations and there's little continuity among participants. I mention them as they can be good forums for posting questions for which you'd like a wide audience. I recommend you join an email group if you're going the asynchronous route. I highly recommend a MOO or IRC for synchronous (real time) conversation.
  1. alt.support.anxiety-panic
  2. alt.support.depression
  3. alt.support.depression.manic
  4. alt.support.depression.seasonal
  5. alt.support.ocd
  6. alt.support.phobias
  7. alt.support.shyness
  8. alt.support.sleep-disorder
  9. alt.support.survivors.prozac
  10. sci.med
  11. sci.med.psychobiology
  12. sci.psychology.misc
  13. sci.psychology.research
  14. sci.psychology.theory


Chat Rooms and Channels


There are a number of IRC channels on the net, too many for me to list given the fact that they come and they go at their owner's will so to speak. However, I will list a few of the sources for some of the better established channels and some additional sites for pertinent information as I find it. I've no experience with IRC myself, since I prefer the richer environment of MOOs for live chat, but many folks seem to like them so I include them here.
  1. LisztIRC: A Brief Intro to IRC - Not only is there an introduction to IRC here, but also the LisztIRC search engine that searches only for available IRC channels and the site includes a list of the top 100 IRC channels online.

  2. Pendulum's IRC Help Page -- Most of what you need to know to get started in IRC is here, including links for downloading the neccesary software.

  3. Harbor of Refuge -- Some information available, but this site is primarily geared toward real time interaction and support.

  4. Support-Group.com: -- Bipolar Disorder Chat Group Member Application.

    Wanna meet me in person?

    I'm Fractal, I'm probably online now, and you might find me if you visit the MOO or have ICQ! My ICQ UID# is 9215347.

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