Feeling powerless or lacking control hurts your self-esteem and it interferes with your quality of life. However, it doesn’t have to be this way. While you can’t always control your circumstances, you can certainly change your actions or thoughts about a situation. You have much more power than you realise and it’s up to you to take control. Keep reading »

One book every person with a trauma-related mental illness should have is, I Can’t Get Over It by Dr. Aphrodite Matsakis. In the book, Matsakis talks about “victim thinking,” a common reaction for trauma survivors. “Victim thinking reflects the feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, defilement, and betrayal often experienced during trauma and afterwards,” she writes. “It can include the low self-esteem that often results from self-blame, survivor guilt, and societal stigmatization.” Keep reading »

We are all unique but low self-esteem signs can look similar in most people. Regardless of our differences, those of who struggle with low self-esteem react to similar situations and have similar negative thoughts. Although these six signs of low self-esteem aren’t the only ones to look out for, they are very common for those who are suffering from low self-esteem. Keep reading »

When people who self-harms feel the need to harm their bodies, they typically turn to the same coping skills they use on a daily basis to stop the urge. Many people listen to music or use deep breathing to help maintain composure when feeling uneasy. Going for a walk or writing down thoughts can be helpful when handling the urge to self-harm. However, sometimes turning to the same coping skills can be just as frustrating as the urge itself when those coping skills don’t always work. Unique self-harm alternatives like massage and acupuncture can help stop self-harm. Keep reading »

After receiving my diagnosis of anorexia as a teen and spending my first short stint in-hospital, I found that the subject of anorexia became slightly taboo. Don’t speak of it and it doesn’t exist. That was the undeclared rule. It was like I’d had a cold — only instead of receiving a prescription of antibiotics, I’d been plied with calories: calories and cakes and cheese and onion crisps. And, for a while, I succumbed just enough. I ate just enough in public to slip under the radar, just enough to continue my mental deterioration undetected. Just enough to “be cured.” Had I found a quick fix for mental illness?

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Lots of people with mental health disorders, such as binge eating disorder, don’t just suffer from one mental illness. Comorbidity is a term used to describe when two or more chronic illnesses are present in the same person. While not everyone has this problem, lots of people do suffer from binge eating disorder and other mental health disorders. For instance, I have binge eating disorder and bipolar disorder. Sometimes, one mental health disorder can aggravate the other and it can make dealing with binge eating disorder all the more complicated. Keep reading »

For anyone who experiences dissociation as part of the posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), (and this includes me during my PTSD years) you know how frustrating, embarrassing and uncontrollable it can be. Reducing dissociation in PTSD is something we all want. Keep reading »

“Life must be lived and curiosity kept alive. One must never, for whatever reason, turn his back on life.” – Eleanor Roosevelt. For her wisdom and for her deep humanity, Eleanor Roosevelt is one of my heroes. I take her words to heart. When anxiety barges into our lives, however, it can be difficult to refrain from turning our back on life. Indeed, anxiety often forces us not only to turn our back but to run and hide safely away. But what we might remember is that curiosity kills anxiety. Keep reading »

While it’s something that many people don’t want to talk about, sex matters to people. Sexual function and sexual desire can be important parts of a person’s life, particularly if he or she is in a relationship. And, unfortunately, what we know is that combat posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) affects a veteran’s sexual desire and sexual function in negative ways. In fact, some studies have showed such a correlation between sexual dysfunction and PTSD that some have proposed making it an official, diagnostic criteria. Keep reading »

A lot of my days with anxiety disorder start something like this: I wake up, then ask myself why I stayed up so late (again) the night before. I’m sleep-deprived, my eyes are bleary, and my thoughts are a grey, swirling blob of worry. I have a powerful feeling I’m forgetting something, or a lot of things. Then I groan loudly at the prospect of having to drag myself through another seemingly pointless day of my pathetic existence. This is often followed by a black wave of despair, and a strong desire to crawl back into bed — maybe forever. It is not easy to plan a day with anxiety disorder. Keep reading »