My name is Joan and I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when I was 14 years old. I have constant ups and downs in my life and it is very hard to open up to people. I have a hard time sharing my feelings with family and friends. I have lived in residential homes such as Colebeck lodge and this helps me to be more independent. I stayed there for one year. I would paint and draw pictures as an outlet to help cope with my symptoms from mental illness. I learned in a class from school how to use art when feeling stressed or overwhelmed.