14 TV Series Characters With Bipolar Disorder


Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that causes people to experience mood swings that range from extremely low (depressed) to very high (manic). In the United States, an estimated 2.6% of adults have bipolar disorder in any given year.

In this blog post we will focus on 14 TV series characters with bipolar disorder and what they might be going through in their episodes when they are experiencing mania or depression. We hope you enjoy!

This list includes the TV series characters that have bipolar disorder and manic depressive disorder.

In some “soap operas” (indicated) Bipolar disorder is described as a superficial and imaginary disorder. However, in some TV series, this disease has much more depth as a subject. 

These sequences can be a useful source for patients with Bipolar Disorder and their relatives. In the series about family relationships and close friends, there are many things that can be addressed on this topic.

In the list below, we briefly describe the fictitious TV series characters diagnosed with bipolar disorder and wrote very short notes about the disease. We also added excerpts from the TV series’ descriptions. If you like the series, you can also find small sections on YouTube so you can get more insight into the character.

If you have any TV series and movie suggestions that you know about but are not listed below, please let us know.

TV Series Characters With Bipolar Disorder

Marta Del Sol – Dallas

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Known for her nickname Marta Del Sol, Veronica Martinez is a fictional character of the American series Dallas, played by Leonor Varela.

Marta is a ruthless, unbalanced and emotional character without ethical values. Therefore, it is seen as quite dangerous character in the series. She was then diagnosed with bipolar disorder and was examined clinically.

Samantha Fitzgerald – Neighbours

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Sam “Sam” Fitzgerald is a fictitious character from the Australian soap opera Neighbours, portrayed by Simone Buchanan. Samantha’s major arcs revolved on her marriage to Daniel Fitzgerald, her bipolar disorder that was triggered by a previous miscarriage, and her pregnancy. The Neighbours production team wanted to handle the topic sensitively, so the plot had to be carefully planned. SANE Australia assisted Buchanan with relevant research in collaboration with the screenplay writers and production team. They worked hard to accurately portray mental illness.

Andre Lyon – Empire

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Empire is a musical TV series. In the series, Andre Lyon gets a Bipolar diagnosis. He takes a spiritual journey to find his identity and his past. It’s recommended.

Maude Findlay – Maude

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Emmy-winning actress Bea Arthur played Maude Findlay in the series. Maude Findlay has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder. She has a lot of emotional ups and downs, suddenly goes from a state of depression to a state of extreme happiness.

Pamela Douglas – The Bold and the Beautiful

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She is Stephanie Forrester’s sister. Pamela is an agitated woman in the series. She gets diagnosed with bipolar disorder and starts taking medicine. She has problems in her relationships, she fights with people. Due to her unstable behaviors, her close circle also experiences constant problems.

Ian Gallagher – Shameless

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The character Ian Gallagher, portrayed by Cameron Monaghan, appears in the Shameless TV series. Mickey and Ian conduct various crimes during the season and exhibit manic behavior. A bipolar diagnosis was made and this disease was also seen in the family. 

Sonny Corinthos – General Hospital

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Sonny is a fictional character who lives in a depressed mood and has many criminal attempts.

Like the character Sonny, Maurice Benard also suffers from bipolar disorder. Benard stated, “When I learned I was bipolar, we wrote it into the character.” In 2006, Corinthos had an onscreen breakdown due to his bipolar disorder. The parallels between the story and Benard’s real-life experiences had Benard believing he was having his own “fourth break down,” though Benard credits staying on his medication as keeping him grounded. His willingness to integrate his real-life medical condition into Sonny’s storylines has raised the visibility of the disease, leading to Benard appearing on shows such as The Oprah Winfrey Show to discuss the disease as well as being the spokesman for the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance.

Cindy Cunningham – Hollyoaks

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Hollyoaks is a British series and refers to many social problems. Cindy Cunningham is one of the important characters in this series. There are mental disorders seen in the series. There are also different issues related to social problems and human relations.

Social issues that the series has dealt with include: abortion, suicide, euthanasia, adoption, homelessness, human trafficking, illegal immigration, homosexuality, bisexuality, being transgender, homophobia, racism, alcoholism, drug addiction, gambling addiction, HIV, sexually transmitted infections, sexual harassment, rape (including male rape and marital rape), incest, underage sex, child abuse (physical and sexual), child grooming, domestic violence (including parental abuse by children), anorexia, bulimia, body dysmorphic disorder, self-harming, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, autism, Down syndrome, bullying, child abduction, fostering, teenage pregnancy, sudden infant death syndrome, stillbirth, deafness, cancer, spina bifida, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and motor neuron disease.

Brookside – Jimmy Corkhill

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After being fired from work, he gets manic depression and is diagnosed with bipolar disorder. In this process, hallucinations and delusions begin to happen. He fights with a student. Then he wants to commit suicide and the police stop him. After this process, he starts taking medication.

Karen Maguire – Shameless

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Karen’s erratic behavior deteriorates further as she starts ripping wallpaper off the walls and playing music at high volume, even attempting suicide by jumping off of a window at one point. She is saved from her suicide attempt by a quick-thinking Paddy Maguire, who shows his sensitive side when she expresses deep care and sympathy for her. When she returns home, she struggles to repair her marriage to Jamie, who is unable to have sex with her because the image of Karen during her breakdown is deeply ingrained in his mind. Jamie, unknown to Karen, begins having sex with other women for money, and to get away from her. 

Zosia March – Holby City

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Zosia March (also Valentine) is a fictional character from the BBC medical drama Holby City, played by actress Camilla Arfwedson.

The character’s most prominent story has been the depiction of bipolar disorder. Zosia begins to drink excessively, use drugs, and her behavior becomes uncontrollable. Through her eventual diagnosis, the show explored the stigma attached to the illness and treatment involving lithium. The story has received acclaim from mental health charities and organizations.

Carrie Mathison – Homeland

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Carrie Anne Mathison is played by actress Claire Danes. She is a fictional character and the protagonist of the American television drama/thriller series. Claire Danes has won many awards for her player performance. She has done research on Bipolar disorder and she specifically prepared for the role.

Stacey Slater and Jean Slater / EastEnders

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The family of the Slater family also had a bipolar Mother and daughter.

The EastEnders is the only series in this field. It is surprising that mother has a bipolar disorder and the series examines the issue of bipolar disorder and how it affects her daughter.

Last Updated on November 13, 2021 by Patric Johnson

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I am studying in Florida about Dialectic Behavioral Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. I'm doing research on Neuro-Emotional Technique (NET), Cognitive psychology, Metacognitive Therapy.

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