My name is Martyn Armstrong (Momo, as I'm more commonly known in online circles); I'm a new blogger for "Debunking Addiction" at HealthyPlace. Next January, I'll cross the threshold of 10 years of sobriety. Still, other than a few Twitter threads on my journey, I'm relatively new to discussing addiction and mental health. And I feel excited (and, if I'm honest, slightly nervous) about sharing my experiences. Addiction and mental health play significant roles in my everyday life. And, though it sounds odd, there are upsides to both.
Which is worse, having really bad arthritis in my knees or hearing schizoaffective voices? I don’t know. They both stink, and I’ve suffered from both. Not that rank needs to be pulled, but maybe I’ll figure out which one is worse--or which one I can cope with better--by writing about it.
There was a time that I felt I needed to avoid anything that caused anxiety. Whether it was a long-term trigger or something that was making me feel uncomfortable at the moment, I felt that I needed to avoid the situation to keep from experiencing any unpleasant feelings as a result of anxiety.
I am one of the many people who consider their first love a life-changing chapter of their lives. Unfortunately, betrayal marred my first love, and the resulting trauma made it hard for me to move on.
It's harder than it's ever been to be an individual. This week, I've been thinking a lot about The Fountainhead, a novel by Ayn Rand, the Russian-born American writer and thinker who's been largely slimed by 21st century progressives for her conservative political philosophy. The Fountainhead, however, deals not with politics but with self-hood. The story follows Howard Roark, an idiosyncratic architect who refuses to bend to the popular principles of his field. Time and time again, Roark is threatened with the end of his career if he doesn't bow to the preferences of the masses, and time and time again, he refuses to give in. Eventually, he comes out on top. The novel is, of course, fictional; reality might not have delivered success to Mr. Roark.
During my childhood, my dad was one of my best friends. So Father's Day was a very exciting time. But after my father died, I dreaded the holiday. Over the years, I have learned to cope with grief through writing. This Father's Day, I want to share some writing prompts that have helped me to remember my father's special place in my life. This post contains six of my writing prompts.
Perfectionism is a double-edged sword. While it can help you achieve greater things in your personal and professional life, it can also lead to a never-ending cycle of self-criticism and low self-esteem. Perfectionists tie their self-worth to their achievements, and if things don't go to plan, they start feeling like they are failures which can destroy their confidence and even self-worth/ image.
For me, psychosis involves auditory hallucinations (hearing voices and sounds) and is the most dangerous part of my illness. The last time I went to the emergency room for symptoms of psychosis, the doctor asked me if I heard voices, and when I answered that I was, he asked an important question, "Do you do what the voices tell you to do?" And unfortunately, my answer was yes. If you can't immediately see the danger in this scenario, try to think of it this way, imagine taking orders from something that is not real. It's alarming. Schizophrenia, voices, combined with suicidal ideation, is even more alarming.
My eating disorder relies on selective memory in order to maintain a stringent foothold in my life. Selective memories are enticing and compelling. They can also be quite dangerous. In fact, as I have come to realize, the presence of selective memory is often the difference between making continual strides in recovery or free-falling back into a cycle of relapse. What do I mean by this, and how am I learning to combat selective memory in my eating disorder? Let me explain.
In the 15 or so years that I've lived with depression, I’ve built a metaphorical toolbox of techniques and relationships that help me keep the darkness at bay. Two of these depression coping tools are my dogs. Here’s how bundles of fur and slobber, known as dogs, help me cope with depression.
Thank you for your comment. You're right; what I stated was an opinion. There is no way to know that number with any accuracy.
And, in case you were wondering, I actually do have bipolar disorder and have been writing about it for 20 years.
-- Natasha Tracy