COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN THE GUARDIAN
It used to be called manic-depression, a superior description of the condition.
I do believe “therapies” are virtually useless for these conditions, one of the class of conditions Freud called “psychoses” as opposed to the more ordinary “neuroses” for which he claimed some success.
I am sure virtually all these conditions will be proved before long to be faults in brain construction, no different than construction faults some people have in hearts or lungs or backbones except these involve the most complex of organs.
No one would pretend to be able to seriously help a person with a faulty heart by talking to him or her, but we do this with people enduring unimaginable agonies in their mal-functioning brains.
That immense complexity in the very tool with which we think has misled us in understanding these things. In the 16th century, almost certainly, it was schizophrenics and manic-depressives who were either burned as witches or regarded with awe as saints.