Mental health is a hot-button issue these days, mostly because it's finally getting some of the attention it deserves.

Millions of people suffering need be ashamed no longer because it isn't their fault. However, one such affliction — the awesome/terrible bipolar disorder — often leaves its sufferers apologizing for their behavior. (Believe me.)

To cut down on needlessly awkward conversations, I have developed this bipolar apology form that you can fill out and hand-deliver/tweet/have engraved in a platinum engagement ring as needed:

Section I Hypomania (It's not crazy. But it's close.)

I apologize for (circle all that apply) the inappropriate (racist/sexist/homophobic/tasteless) joke and/or excessively (long/loud/obnoxious) tirade about (my greatness/the stupidity of everyone else) that took place (during the staff meeting/on the phone with you in the middle of the night/on your front yard).

Section II Mania (Complete only if you are currently under heavy sedation.)

(A) Sex

I apologize for the reckless sexual activity with (you/your significant other/your mom) that occurred after I professed my love and said you are (my light/my flame/my raison d'etre) and for (not calling you afterward/causing irreparable harm to your long-term relationship/stealing your car).

(B) Reckless spending


Furthermore, I want to apologize for emptying (our joint/your personal) bank account so I could (build a haberdashery in Puerto Vallarta/buy drugs because they are awesome/move to France to become the greatest Romantic poet of the 21st century).

(C) Odd, illegal or otherwise disconcerting behavior

I also would like to reaffirm my allegiance to this planet and apologize for (dancing naked at your nephew's bar mitzvah/setting fire to my clothes as they hung in your closet/getting the SWAT team called again). I also would like to admit that I am not (Jesus of Nazareth or some other messianic figure/the way, the truth, the light/the keeper of the secrets of the universe) or a CIA operative working deep undercover to stop (the Communist horde/ISIS/the aliens beneath Denver International Airport). I also affirm that no (shadowy government agency/higher intelligence) has implanted a device in my head to (track my movements/harvest my thoughts).

Section III Depression (Because what goes up must come down.)

I would like to apologize for missing (your birthday/work/birth) because I was (sobbing uncontrollably/reading "The Grapes of Wrath." Again./gaining weight). Furthermore, I would like to reaffirm that (life is a precious gift blah blah blah/I'll be there for the next birth, wedding, funeral/ I am a human being). I will no longer (call five times a day to say I hate myself/watch nine hours of WWII documentaries to confirm that life is meaningless and humanity doesn't deserve redemption.)

Section IV Mixed Episode (Because sometimes shit goes more than one way.)

I apologize for (calling/emailing/yelling at you from across the office) to say that I am greatest (person/writer/artist/lover) of (the 21st century/all time) but no one (understands/appreciates/acknowledges) me, so I should (quit/kill myself/move to Omaha and manage a Walgreens). I will no longer (punch myself in the face/howl meaninglessly into the phone/call myself or you a loser).

Print out numerous copies for your records. This isn't just happening once.

John Bear: