E.g article comment at http://nyti.ms/12QAy1D points out "six months of mania as the result of a [drug] reaction…followed by a misdiagnosis…" Author herself doesn't seem to notice that she has depression before being treated with drugs, but it's bipolar after being treated.
Not a single mention of meditation or similar therapies, which have been much-studied and successful for many people. As if they don't exist as therapies.
A friend took a drug for mental health issues for ten days, and has had nearly twenty years of side effects (so far) affecting his sleep (he twitches when melatonin is released—or taken as a supplement). It never happened before, became severe on the drug, faded slightly in the months afterwards, and has never fully receded. Has tried many things to treat. And this is a small thing!
Throwing chemicals at problems when they don't know what will be solved or caused should really only be a last resort.
I think there is also a misconception that psychiatrists and psychologists are the same thing when they have entirely different purposes and training. Psychiatrists have med school educations, thus they deal with drugs (which are often quite necessary and effective) and acute in-patient kinds of cases more often. Psychologists have training which focuses more on effective treatments which are either are not drug based or work in conjunction with pharmacological treatments. They're the ones you go to for issues with the self or if you want therapies related to mindfullness or cognitive behavioral therapy.
By last resort I mean try something else first. Later, the pharmacologist explained that she was very different than her father.
The author's main point about what needs more attention in treatment of bipolar mood disorder I cannot fully agree with. Unlike her, I have lived in more than one country of the world for a long span of my life, and at a slightly younger age, I have decades of my life that were spent looking back at living a very culturally and linguistically different place, where "self" plays a very different role in individual lives. Human beings get better as they become more connected to their communities, not usually as they become more self-absorbed. (I'm looking for a link just now about that--perhaps I'll add it in an edit if I find the link I'm looking for.) It's great that the article author has family and community connections. The best reason to take individually prescribed medicine is to help build up interpersonal relationships. Preoccupation with self-identity is not a cultural universal, but being with and dealing with our fellow human beings is.
tokenaudult's point of other cultures not having such a focus on the notion of the self is very interesting; it seems to completely undermine the idea that the self is key to recovery. It is very typical that stories about mental health end with some suggestion that is going to solve it all, but to me it's clear we are simply stumbling through the dark.