Duluth man shares his diagnosis of being bipolar to help others with their mental health

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Jerry Thoreson remembers being a young pastor, going a million miles an hour. Then, when he turned 30, something changed.

“I’d have two or three days where I’d be fine, two or three days where I wouldn’t be,” he said. The diagnosis, 30 years ago, was manic depression. Now it’s known as bipolar disorder.

“It was a really dark time. But I lived through it. I say, now I live with mental health issues or mental illness, and it’s an illness just like anything else. But somehow we we still don’t treat it that way.”

To help lessen the stigma, Thoreson is talking about it openly now.

“It’s only been in the last year that I decided I’m not going to hide it anymore,” he said.

He’s leading the Leadership Duluth campaign called “Just Breathe 988.”

The goal is to get the word out about the suicide and crisis hotline 988.

Thoreson is the social media manager for Destination Duluth, and is happy to help lift up the spirits with his posts.

“It dawned on me, I’m just as much in the ministry today as I was back in my twenties. You know, we’re sharing the light and life giving message that Duluth is a a place, a life giving place, and there’s no place like it on Earth.”

See more here: https://www.wdio.com/front-page/top-stories/just-breathe-duluths-988-awareness-campaign/