To hear Porter Smith lecture on bipolar disorder is like taking a walk with a dear friend to places that you never thought someone would dare take you, e.g. the bottom of the ocean, the edge of a tall cliff, the far corners of the mind. Through these dark and extreme corridors of life he leads anyone who trusts that mental illness is not a curse, but a blessing that needs to be met head on if it is to be understood. Take his hand if you have the chance and let him lead you safely out from the ocean floor and down from the windy treetops.
Porter Smith / P.S. Lutz is a rare symptom-free bipolar. He has been that way since 2008, after what he desperately declared was to be his last bipolar breakdown and hospitalization. From that time he has pursued an intense path of self-discipline, vigilance, and emotional honesty, written two books on the subject of bipolar disorder, and has lectured at psychiatric conventions, schools, and in private and public forums.
A wish to see other bipolars circumvent some of the torment of long-term trials of confusion and distress amid a symptomatic bipolar life charges Porter's lecturing and his sense of service in the world. His lectures overflow with inspiration and creative spirit, no mark of three severe bipolar breakdowns, one nearly successful suicide attempt, and twenty-two years of disabling bipolar symptoms to be detected in his voice or his bearing. He sometimes has to remind even his friends that his bipolar story is true, since Porter walks so tall and unimpeded by all that once dismantled him and brought him so often to his knees.