Actress Catherine Zeta Jones was diagnosed with bipolar disorder last year and has spent her time speaking about life with the disorder. Now she has opened up about how bipolar disorder made her marriage to Michael Douglas stronger.
"You find out who you really are and who you are married to. You find things inside yourself you never imagined were there," Jones told In Style magazine. She has been married to Douglas for 12 years, and they have two children together, Dylan and Carys.
"I've gained an appreciation for little things," Jones added. "Like tea outside on a terrace and a beautiful afternoon like this."
However, one thing that Jones has had to give up in order to be healthier is searching for any news for herself online.
"I'm the sort of person who will just look for the negative – Michael really can't understand it, but that's just the way I am. And with my bipolar thing, that's poison. So I just stopped … cold turkey, and it's so liberating," Jones admitted.
And instead of keeping the disorder to herself and refusing to speak about it, Jones has done the exact opposite. Mental health is a serious issue and there is still some sort of stigma attached to it, which is why Jones wants to tell her own personal story about life with bipolar disorder.
"I'm not the kind of person who likes to shout out my personal issues from the rooftops but with my bipolar becoming public, I hope fellow sufferers will know it is completely controllable. I hope I can help remove any stigma attached to it, and that those who don't have it under control will seek help with all that is available to treat it," she explained.
Bipolar disorder is characterized by extreme fluctuations in mood, ranging from extreme joy and happiness to crushing depression. The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that bipolar disorder affects 5.7 million American adults. Many sufferers, however, go untreated either due to a lack of resources or a fear of the public stigma.