Julie Kraft is a Canadian author, artist, and mental health advocate devoted to spreading awareness and shattering stigma. Her personal story is one that includes decades of living with anxiety, depression, and the extreme highs and lows of an undiagnosed mental health condition.
In the spring of 2010, as an overwhelmed wife and mother of three, Julie hit rock bottom and sought professional help. Soon after, she received an official diagnosis of bipolar II disorder. Her initial feelings of shame and brokenness led to desperate searches for positive images of bipolar. Julie's efforts were in vain; only disturbing cartoons, mocking memes, and sensationalized headlines were found.
In the almost twelve years since her diagnosis, Julie has come to a place of fully embracing her bipolar mind. She credits it with allowing her to live a vibrant, creative, and fulfilling life. She wholeheartedly believes that she has been 'fearfully and wonderfully made' by a God whose faithful promises will sustain her through any challenges that life, or her disorder, might bring. Julie is now passionate about sharing her journey wherever she can - whether on paper, social media, stages or street corners. She is thrilled to have published her memoir, The Other Side of Me - memoir of a bipolar mind, as well as a children's book, Tilda Whirl- both in an effort to start the conversation on mental health at ALL ages. Julie has also contributed to publications for Psych Central, Psycom, and BP Hope magazine. She currently co-hosts This is Bipolar vlog and podcast. Aside from advocacy, Julie's interests include travelling, painting, photography, interior design, and scouring secondhand stores. She currently resides south of the Canadian border in the scorching hot state of Arizona. As she continues to pour herself into her advocacy work, it is Julie's greatest hope that her 'voice' will continue to open minds, change perceptions, and help others walking a similar path.