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Verbal Abuse And Brainwashing

Verbal Abuse And Brainwashing

Verbal abuse and brainwashing seem to go together like puzzle pieces. It seems that once a person figures out how to verbally manipulate someone, they can become verbal abusers and brainwashers of the highest order. Some people doubt brainwashing exists. But then, some people don’t think verbal abuse counts as abuse. I believe verbal abuse and brainwashing have a long history of working together to get victims to do exactly as we’re told.

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Living with A Mental Illness Isn’t Always Living

Living with A Mental Illness Isn’t Always Living

As someone with Dissociative Identity Disorder, I’m well aware of the toll living with a mental illness takes on relationships, jobs, and self-esteem. I struggle with things that come easily to many, and seemingly benign things can have a profound impact on my ability to manage the very basics of daily living. Even so, I’m incredibly fortunate. The ugly reality is that many people with a severe mental illness aren’t lucky enough to worry about whether or not they’re successful at work, or fret over how their illness affects their loved ones. They’re homeless, destitute, unable to advocate for themselves, and have no one to help them. Some people have paid a very high price for having a mental illness. Mark Ellinger is living with Bipolar Disorder. And he’s one of those people.

mark-ellinger-1Barely Living with Bipolar Disorder

Our guest on the HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show, Mark Ellinger wasn’t properly diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder until 2001. He struggled for years with what he now knows were severe manic episodes and incapacitating depressive crashes. Living with a mental illness he didn’t know he had, Mark coped as best he could, but eventually ended up homeless and near death. He paid a price some of us with severe mental illness never have to.

Between 1985 and 1995 I lost just about all that was dear to me – friends, family, business, home, and possessions – and for the next six years I plumbed the depths of experience and my own psyche, living on the mean streets of San Francisco as a homeless junkie. It damn near killed me and I was hospitalized for ten weeks.

mark-ellinger-2Today Mark is a writer and photographer, no longer homeless or struggling with addiction. Living with Bipolar Disorder isn’t easy for him, but he’s now in treatment and has managed to rebuild his life. Like so many others, he knows firsthand the price severe mental illness can exact on people’s lives. He graciously agreed to share his experience with us.

Video on The High Price of Living with A Mental Illness

Watch our video interview with Mark Ellinger, the High Cost of Mental Illness, as he talks about what living with Bipolar Disorder is like for him, the impact severe mental illness has had on his life, and what he’s learned from living with a mental illness.

You can find all mental health video interviews from the HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show in the table of contents.

Share Your Experiences

Are you living with Bipolar Disorder or another severe mental illness? Has living with a mental illness ever felt like not really living at all? We invite you to call us at 1-888-883-8045 and share your experiences and insights on the high cost of mental illness. (Info on Sharing Your Mental Health Experiences here.) You can also leave comments below.

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The Better You Listen (Part 2)

The Better You Listen (Part 2)

The better you listen, the more you will know. It may sound very simple and it is. Listening takes up more of your waking hours than any other activity. Of your waking hours, 70% of them are spent communicating. Writing takes up 9%, reading 16%, talking is 30% and listening is 45% of communicating hours. THE underrated business tool is good listening.

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Spouses Day

According to Hallmark and several of those bizarre national holiday websites, January 26 is Spouses Day. This is a day meant to honor your significant other and show him or her how much you appreciate them. Some of you are probably thinking, “Isn’t that what Valentine’s Day is for?” Yes and no. While Valentine’s Day might have started off with noble and honorable intentions, it has turned into an over-commercialized holiday where you get a pat on the back for buying your spouse a box of chocolates and a mushy card. Spouses Day is all about doing something (not necessarily spending money) to show your better half you care.

Spouses Day

According to Hallmark and several of those bizarre national holiday websites, January 26 is Spouses Day. This is a day meant to honor your significant other and show him or her how much you appreciate them. Some of you are probably thinking, “Isn’t that what Valentine’s Day is for?” Yes and no. While Valentine’s Day might have started off with noble and honorable intentions, it has turned into an over-commercialized holiday where you get a pat on the back for buying your spouse a box of chocolates and a mushy card. Spouses Day is all about doing something (not necessarily spending money) to show your better half you care.

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Communication Breakdowns Lead to Frustrated Parents

Communication Breakdowns Lead to Frustrated Parents

It’s the last week of January, and there’s a whole lot of crazy goin’ on. In Bob’s case, particularly, he is climbing up his usual mid-winter spiral into mania. It’s frustrating. Throw in some miscommunication among treatment providers and it becomes downright maddening.

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Traumatic Anxiety Changes Lives

Traumatic Anxiety Changes Lives

Trauma and anxiety change lives. Profoundly, and at their most fundamental levels.

It seems obvious, once said. One of those things: it is what it is, right?

Anxiety: Sh## happens, then you…

Then you pick up the pieces. Then you realize life isn’t something you can wear emblazoned on your chest. It isn’t a war wound, or a slogan. And you don’t get a medal for making it out alive.

Not when the fight is a ‘normal’, every day thing.

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Internalizing Fear and Hatred of Mental Illness

Internalizing Fear and Hatred of Mental Illness

The public fears mental illness and people are afraid of disclosing their mental illness due to stigma. But some of other people's fear affects how the ill feel about themselves.

I grew up in a small town where there was no diversity of any sort, in beliefs or otherwise. And one of the things an outspoken group really didn’t like was gay people. This group lodged a major war to ensure that anything ever mentioning homosexuality was banned from my high school.

I thought these people were idiots. So I fought them. I wasn’t about to let some closed-minded, ignorant people marginalize others based on their sexuality. I went to their rallies and spoke against them. I wrote stories for our paper.

And then, sometime around age 17 I figured out I was bisexual. So I jumped into a closet for a few years.

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Getting Better Should Not Make Things Worse

What angers me the most is that this doesn’t have to happen. But it does, and most Americans simply don’t care. It is easier to believe that people like me did something wrong than it is to realize there is soul-crushing injustice in America.

It’s ironic, but trying to recover has made my symptoms worse.

Getting Better Should Not Make Things Worse

If I ramble or some typos survive my editing process, I apologize now. I am currently involved in a battle regarding my disability benefits. People with severe mental illness–especially when the symptoms are made worse by borderline personality disorder (BPD)–may understand from experience.

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Dissociative Identity Disorder and Self-Sabotage

Dissociative Identity Disorder and Self-Sabotage

You really want to lose weight but you keep stocking your pantry with junk food, “for the kids.” This is self-sabotage, the frustrating outcome of conflicting conscious and subconscious desires. If you have Dissociative Identity Disorder, self-sabotage is more complex. Alters have the ability to A) assume control of the mind and body, and B) exert enough influence to impact the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of other system members. Add to that the fact that Dissociative Identity Disorder exists in part to compartmentalize conflicting perceptions and it’s not surprising that many people with DID experience particularly pervasive and disruptive forms of self-sabotage.

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Putting a Stop to Verbal and Emotional Abuse

Putting a Stop to Verbal and Emotional Abuse

"You are a target, not a victim," say Shelly and Dr. Michael Marshall to those living with verbal and emotional abuse. Listen and learn how to stop the abuse.

As we heard from our guest Kellie Holly last week, verbal and emotional abuse is insidious and destructive. Once you recognize you’re in an abusive relationship, what do you do about it? Shelly and Dr. Michael Marshall say putting a stop to verbal and emotional abuse is up to you.

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