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Putting the Brakes on ADHD-Fueled Road Rage

Adults with ADHD often have anger issues, and nothing brings them steaming to the surface like lousy traffic. In a follow-up to my blog on anger management and driving, I show Bug Out Bob in action and talk about different techniques to help manage road rage.

Putting the Brakes on ADHD-Fueled Road Rage

Adults with ADHD often have anger issues, and nothing brings them steaming to the surface like lousy traffic. In a follow-up to my blog on anger management and driving, I show Bug Out Bob in action and talk about different techniques to help manage road rage.

See “ADHD Frustration – Get Out of My Way or I Shall Taunt You a Second Time” for more info.

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New Optimism for Parents on Causes and Treatment of Eating Disorders

New Optimism for Parents on Causes and Treatment of Eating Disorders

I’m a pretty loud critic of old and discredited ideas about eating disorders; and there are many. I have to say, though, lately I have more-and-more optimism about the future.

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Motivated to Procrastinate

Do you have a difficult time getting things started? Find yourself highly motivated to find something else to do? Are you even aware when you do it? Today we’re going to discuss chronic procrastination—one of the hallmarks of adult ADHD.

Motivated to Procrastinate

Do you have a difficult time getting things started? Find yourself highly motivated to find something else to do? Are you even aware when you do it? Today we’re going to discuss chronic procrastination—one of the hallmarks of adult ADHD.

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Anxiety Sufferer and Pregnant

Anxiety Sufferer and Pregnant

I had an extremely shocking and surreal day yesterday. I had a suspicion, and it took a couple of tests to come up with conclusive results. Mr. T is out of town all week, so I had to tell him over the phone. I couldn’t keep this to myself for so long. I found out that I am pregnant.

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Psychosis and Saving My Daughter’s Sanity

Psychosis and Saving My Daughter’s Sanity

Susan Inman was our guest on the HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show on March 30, 2010. Her daughter suffered from severe psychosis and was later diagnosed with Schizoaffective Disorder. Susan discusses the toll Molly’s severe mental illness took on her and her family, finding the right treatment for psychosis, and the tools she used to save her daughter’s sanity as well as manage her own. You can watch the interview “on-demand.”

From Susan Inman

susan-inmanI am a 60 year old mother of two daughters. I have been a secondary school teacher of English and drama for almost twenty years. (BA Swarthmore College, MA UCLA)

My younger daughter had her first psychotic episode in May of 2000 when she was fifteen. This occurred within a couple of months of being on Paxil to treat depression. She was initially diagnosed with bipolar disorder and seemed to respond to treatment with Valproate. However, she again became psychotic later that year and this psychotic episode lasted two years.

During this time, she was seen by a team of psychiatrists in Vancouver who specialize in refractory psychoses; we later found out from one of the participants that the team considered her to be one of the most ill teens they’d seen and some of them predicted that she might have to be institutionalized for life. She was diagnosed with a schizoaffective disorder. During these two years, her mood disorder had been brought under control through the use of Tegretol. However, her delusions, auditory and olfactory hallucinations, and thought disorder continued to worsen.

Seeking Treatment for Severe Psychosis

We decided, with the full support of local psychiatrists, to take her to the Menninger Clinic in the US; this eventually led to a much higher dose of antipsychotic medication which allowed her to emerge from her severe psychosis. Although she has had several relapses since then, she has never become as profoundly psychotic as she was during this two year episode.

When my daughter became ill, I was unable to find any accounts of the experiences of other parents in similar situations. Many of these kinds of memoirs by parents have been appearing in the U.S. in recent years, but they have been quite rare in Canada. My book, After Her Brain Broke, Helping My Daughter Recover Her Sanity, describes the long process to help my daughter (called Molly in the book) rebuild her life.

Challenges Severely Mentally Ill Face Integrating into Society

One of the big challenges was finding educational opportunities. She had dropped out of secondary school and experienced serious cognitive deficits after her psychosis. Fortunately, Vancouver Community College has self-paced programs that enable people to develop or rebuild the academic skills they need to continue their educations. Molly spent four years there slowly doing the kind of cognitive remediation that many people with schizophrenia need. She became better able to focus and to generate and organize her ideas. She is now taking courses at another community college and still struggles with the symptoms of her disorders.

During Molly’s two year psychotic episode, and in the following year when she was experiencing severe obsessive compulsive disorder, she was able to attend an unusual program (Hamber House) run by the Vancouver School Board, Vancouver Children’s Hospital, and several provincial agencies for the dozen most severely mentally ill students in Vancouver. Once she had recovered from her psychosis, Molly was able to participate in their psychoeducation program and learned a lot about her illnesses. Her understanding of her illnesses was greatly increased by taking the BRIDGES psychoeducation program that was developed by NAMI in the US; this is now widely available in the Vancouver area. These programs helped Molly also develop a deep acceptance of her disorders.

In recent years, Molly has participated in a number of public speaking events discussing her experiences with severe mental illnesses. Because she was so profoundly ill for so long, her prognosis was very poor. Her story provides great hope to other people. Not only is Molly able to continue her education, but she has many other wonderful parts to her life. She has a boyfriend who understands her illnesses and offers her constant support. They like to ski, snowboard, play golf and tennis together. They also go to lots of films and concerts. Molly often says how much she likes her life.

Watch the interview with Susan Inman “Schizoaffective Disorder in the Family: Saving My Daughter’s Sanity“.

Share Your Thoughts or Experiences About Getting the Best Mental Health Treatment For Your Child

We invite you to call us at 1-888-883-8045 and share your experience and insights into getting mental health treatment for your child. (Info on Sharing Your Mental Health Experiences here.) You can also leave comments below.

Ed. Note: If you’re looking for in-depth information on all aspects of psychosis, check out our special section on Bipolar Psychosis: Causes, Treatments and Living with Psychosis written by award-winning mental health author, Julie Fast.

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One Parent’s View of Eating Disorders in Two Health Systems

One Parent’s View of Eating Disorders in Two Health Systems

I was in London earlier this month for the Eating Disorders International Conference held by b-eat, the largest eating disorders charity in the UK. The event gave me the opportunity to see eating disorder treatment from two perspectives: my own, and the one faced by families in England. I came away feeling the chasm between science and practice is just as deep on both sides of the pond, but the content is different.

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Ways to Inspire a Deadlocked Bipolar Life

Ways to Inspire a Deadlocked Bipolar Life

We all can get in a rut sometimes. It’s hard to get out of a rut. You have to pull yourself up out of your hole. How can you do that when you feel so defeated?

Bipolar Disorder can defeat you like no other disease can. It affects our brain and that affects how we function; which, in turn, affects our relationships and our daily existence. I’ve found myself alone, hopeless, and incapable of doing anything about it. At least until I found the tools in which to combat that feeling of being in a rut.

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Do You Feel Your Gifts Project Your Self Worth?

Do You Feel Your Gifts Project Your Self Worth?

Gift Giving and Keeping Score

Yesterday, I went to work and we had a baby shower for a co-worker. The food was excellent, the decorations beautiful, and a table was full of gifts. No matter if it’s a baby shower, a bridal shower, Christmas, or a birthday party, I can’t help but feel that your gift gets entered into a silent competition in the minds of everyone watching. It’s as if each gift goes through a rating system. A score is given for the level of creativity, thoughtfulness, expense, quantity, and quality for the gift itself as well as how it is wrapped. And somehow the overall score given to your gift correlates to how much you love that person, or even worse, how you rate as a person on a scale of worth.

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3 Ways To Not Be an ADHD Twitter Twit

There are a lot of style guides out there on how to use Twitter properly. Many will tell you what you should and shouldn’t do. They tell you how to get followers…how to get retweeted…how to build multiple streams of revenue using Twitter DMs as your combo pathway to Hell & Easy Street. I’m simply going to tell you how to use Twitter without losing your ADHD self in it.

3 Ways To Not Be an ADHD Twitter Twit

There are a lot of style guides out there on how to use Twitter properly. Many will tell you what you should and shouldn’t do. They tell you how to get followers…how to get retweeted…how to build multiple streams of revenue using Twitter DMs as your combo pathway to Hell & Easy Street. I’m simply going to tell you how to use Twitter without losing your ADHD self in it.

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Have Faith Even When a Bipolar Trigger Strikes

Have Faith Even When a Bipolar Trigger Strikes

There was a noise in our car that had been there for a while. So, we went to Pep Boys to have it checked out. It turned out that the noise was a bad rotor in the brake system, but the break pad was fine. It was nothing to worry about right now. The car would still run fine. However, while they were there, they found out that the radiator was leaking. It cost $309 to fix it. I immediately went into stressed out mode. We had money to fix it, but just barely and we’d be sitting tight until the end of the month. I freaked out. I hate bills. They are always a trigger for a bipolar episode to start.

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