HUFFINGTON POST: Yesterday the New York Times explored the burgeoning “mad pride” movement, which aims to fight the stigma of serious mental illness like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, and even, in some cases, celebrate it. [C]heck out the mad pride movement’s most hilarious, if unofficial, spokesperson Liz Spikol’s blog The Trouble With Spikol, which chronicles her struggle with bipolar disorder. Or watch two of Liz Spikol’s many YouTube videos: First, she tells an abbreviated version of her life story. MORE
NEW YORK TIMES: In the YouTube video, Liz Spikol is smiling and animated, the light glinting off her large hoop earrings. Deadpan, she holds up a diaper. It is not, she explains, a hygienic item for a giantess, but rather a prop to illustrate how much control people lose when they undergo electroconvulsive therapy, or ECT, as she did 12 years ago. In other videos and blog postings, Ms. Spikol, a 39-year-old writer in Philadelphia who has bipolar disorder, describes a period of psychosis so severe she jumped out of her mother’s car and ran away like a scared dog.
Ms. Spikol writes about her experiences with bipolar disorder in The Philadelphia Weekly, and posts videos on her blog, the Trouble With Spikol. Thousands have watched her joke about her weight gain and loss of libido, and her giggle-punctuated portrayal of ECT. But another video shows her face pale and her eyes red-rimmed as she reflects on the dark period in which she couldn’t care for herself, or even shower. “I knew I was crazy but also sane enough to know that I couldn’t make myself sane,” she says in the video.
IN a telephone interview, she described one medication that made her salivate so profusely she needed towels to mop it up. “Of course it’s heartbreaking if you let it be,” she said. “But it’s also inherently funny. I’d sit there watching TV and drool so much, it would drip on the couch.” MORE