Zack and Nancy

Less than a year ago, while away at college, Zack had his first major manic episode. After experimenting with drugs with his friends, he felt a sudden change come over him that persisted even after the effects of the drugs wore off. “The next day, I thought that...

Missy, Bill, and Katherine

Although Missy struggled with bouts of depression since childhood, she resisted taking medication. She finally sought treatment in order to be well for her infant daughter, Katherine. At first the antidepressant helped, but then Missy became manic and was...

Michael and Family

By the middle of his junior year Michael was finding it nearly impossible to get through a day at school. He felt claustrophobic and out of control. He became physically ill in school and lost any motivation to do homework or see friends. Although theater and being...

Mary Margaret and friend, Gary

In 1994, Mary Margaret was working long hours for an international consulting firm. She also bought a house that year, and her father, who had been fighting cancer, passed away. “By April 1995,” she says, “I could no longer get out of bed or stop...

Lynn with Bob and son, Jack

Lynne’s depression hit out of nowhere the night after her son Jack, was born. She was still in the hospital, after a 32-hour labor without three days of sleep. “Even though I am in a happy marriage, have a successful career, and understand my...

John

Looking back Rebecca, 41, thinks that the “personality quirks” she saw in her husband when they first met in college actually were signs of mental illness. In their early years together she noticed that John, now 42, had trouble sticking with a career path...