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Playdates and Mentally Ill Children

Playdates and Mentally Ill Children

Children with bipolar disorder or ADHD can have difficulty with socializing and playdates. My son recently had his first playdate. See how it turned out.As you know, my son Bob has bipolar disorder and ADHD. A few days ago, he had his first play date–at least, the first he can remember. How did it go? Take a look at this video.

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Maybe I’m Not Lazy: Maybe I’m Just Ill

Maybe I’m Not Lazy: Maybe I’m Just Ill

Reminding yourself that you're not lazy, just ill, is important. And then, taking steps to overcome the mental illness seems more manageable. Try these steps.

Back when I was living with my best friend in college, I just couldn’t manage a lot of basic life activities. And you know it was the little stuff – doing the dishes, getting up off the couch more than once a day. Yeah, even I thought it was weird. Having such trouble with things as easy as taking care of myself, my home, my needs.

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It’s A Wonderful Life, Not A Perfect Life

We can enjoy holidays–and life–when we remember that things often do not go according to plan. Understanding and accepting this fact does not mean we have to like it–even if it is incredibly liberating to know that it’s okay if we don’t know the words to O Christmas Tree.

It’s A Wonderful Life, Not A Perfect Life

Attention! Your holiday–whatever it is–is not going to be perfect.

While you may not accidentally break your glasses in a freak accident involving an Official Red Ryder Carbine-Action Two-Hundred-Shot Range Model Air Rifle or realize in horror that the Bumpuss Hounds have eaten your turkey, things are going to go wrong. 

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Love Me, Love My Kid: Stepfamilies and Mentally Ill Children (Part 1 of 2)

Love Me, Love My Kid: Stepfamilies and Mentally Ill Children (Part 1 of 2)

Dating as a single mother–tough. Dating as a single mother of a child who never sits still, throws outrageous tantrums, gets kicked out of preschools and gives you black eyes–tough to the point you might want to consider adopting several cats and joining the spinsterhood. Once in a while, though, life throws you a curve ball, and you might just meet Mr. Fantastic–that’s when the real work begins.

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Eating Disorders and the Anxiety Monster Revisited

Eating Disorders and the Anxiety Monster Revisited

As I mentioned in an earlier blog post, for many, anorexia and anxiety go hand-in-hand. Anxiety can contribute to developing anorexia. Conversely, having anorexia can lead to increased levels of anxiety.

I do take several anti-anxiety medications to help manage my anxiety. My doctor also had another suggestion which I’ll share with you in this video.

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2 Techniques for Dialoguing with Alter Personalities

2 Techniques for Dialoguing with Alter Personalities

I’ve lived virtually my whole life with a vague but pervasive sense that somewhere there were people I couldn’t see who knew things about me I didn’t. When I was diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder, I finally understood that the information I wasn’t privy to existed in my own head, guarded by alter personalities. I naively thought I could simply ask and all would be revealed to me. I quickly learned that developing internal communication isn’t nearly that easy. But there are dialoguing techniques that can help.

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Depression Isn’t a Chemical Imbalance

Depression Isn’t a Chemical Imbalance

While depression is commonly thought of as a chemical imbalance, research shows it's much more. Depression also involves physiological and genetic components.

What I know about the brain is a fragment of what is known about the brain. What we know about the brain is a fragment of what there is to know about the brain. That being said, what we do know is worth taking a look at.

In the 1960’s scientists discovered that increasing levels of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin in the brain reduced depressive symptoms. This suggested that a depressed brain didn’t have enough of these chemicals and this is where the chemical imbalance theory came from. It was quite reasonable and made perfect sense, but we’ve learned a lot since the 1960s.

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Understanding Fear, Anxiety, and Panic

Understanding Fear, Anxiety, and Panic

jeff-wise-small-headshotJeff Wise says understanding fear isn’t as simple as the fight or flight model suggests. He believes coping with anxiety and panic is easier with a more sophisticated grasp of how our minds respond to fear. Jeff is a science writer and the author of Extreme Fear: The Science of Your Mind in Danger.

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Eating Disorders and the Anxiety Monster

Eating Disorders and the Anxiety Monster

Every day, I wake up anxious and afraid to face the day. Each morning, my anxiety is so strong, I sometimes feel as if I am crawling out of my skin. I have dealt with anxiety and depression most of my life, but it has increased tremendously since I developed anorexia nervosa. It seems as if eating disorders and anxiety are intertwined. Dealing with daily anxiety has been one of the worst side effects of having anorexia. I have often said “if I could only get rid of the anxiety . . .”

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Bipolar Terms: Bipolar By Any Other Name Would Be As Crazy

Bipolar Terms: Bipolar By Any Other Name Would Be As Crazy

Should people claim to be mentally ill or have a mental illness? I have no problem saying I'm bipolar and I wish people would stop insisting that I not say it.

I am a word-fetishist. I adore words. They are my playthings. They are my blankies. I generally mold them, shape them and occasionally break them at my leisure.

But I also respect words. I respect their meaning and their use outside the bounds of current politically correct, self-help thinking, but somehow the rest of the world wants to complain because I call a spade a shovel.

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