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PTSD and Dissociation: What You Need to Know

PTSD and Dissociation: What You Need to Know

Dissociation in PTSD may be the most confusing symptom we experience. Here's a breakdown of dissociation in PTSD with a video that tells you more about it.

In my work with PTSD clients, we bump up a lot against “I feel so disconnected from myself!” and “I feel so very separate from the world!” In my own PTSD experience, I too felt a big break between my experience of reality and my connection to myself and my body.

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Rediscovering Life After Anorexia

Rediscovering Life After Anorexia

For almost five years, I have struggled and fought to free myself from anorexia.

It has been painful, and full of tears.

It hasn’t been easy. Understatement of the year.

This is what has happened:

A panicked flight from Rogers Memorial Hospital’s eating disorders program. Eight hospitalizations on the psychiatric unit of an area hospital. Spectacular failure during a six-week stay at the River Centre Clinic. Plunging into alcohol and drug abuse. Multiple relapses.

Now I can finally see the other side.

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Understanding the World of Schizophrenia

Understanding the World of Schizophrenia

In a state of psychosis, one can glimpse into alternate states of reality deep within the subconscious. It is here, within this realm, where one’s deepest fears materialize into perceived physical existence. The myth of “disorganized thinking” becomes all too apparent under its spell. Inside, one can see the rationale behind the unthinkable and illogical. Delusions become neatly organized and aligned in such a way as to create a fictitious world filled with terror. Outside this universe, one is forced to become a judgmental spectator, unable to rationalize seemingly immoral and “disorganized” behavior.

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Co-Morbidity: Borderline Personality Disorder and Depression

Co-Morbidity: Borderline Personality Disorder and Depression

Co-morbidity is a fancy way of saying “two or more co-occuring diagnoses.” Many people with borderline personality disorder also have depression. In this video, More Than Borderline’s, Becky Oberg, talks about depression symptoms and causes of depression.

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Self-Esteem in Girls: The Media’s Role

The exposure to media has a detrimental effect on girls’ self-esteem which can begin in her elementary years. Discover ways to raise a media savvy daughter and build self-esteem that will last a lifetime.

Self-Esteem in Girls: The Media’s Role

Girls, today, have an increasingly difficult time with developing and maintaining high self-esteem due to numerous factors. One major contributor to low self-esteem is their exposure to media.

The Dove Self-Esteem Fund reveals 71% of girls with low self-esteem feel that their appearance doesn’t measure up; including “not feeling pretty enough, thin enough, stylish enough or trendy enough,” compared to the images they are exposed to in popular media. Add in the fact 80% of adult women polled said images of women on TV and in movies, magazines, and ads make them feel insecure about appearance, and we clearly see a pattern. We need to start talking to our girls at younger ages about what media images really are. (see Eating Disorders: Body Image and Advertising)

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Surviving Psych Waiting Rooms

Surviving Psych Waiting Rooms

“I hate wait.” – Inigo Montoya, The Princess Bride

I hate waiting rooms. I know this hardly makes me unique, but I suspect my hatred is more pronounced due to the amount of time I spend in them. Stale magazines. Old furniture. “Art.” Institutional beige walls.

Ick, ick, ick.

I have had chronically on-time doctors and chronically late doctors but no matter what, somehow, in a waiting room, it feels like your life is wasting away.

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Mental Illness and Learning to Trust the Process of Recovery

Mental Illness and Learning to Trust the Process of Recovery

Getting a serious mental illness diagnosis is scary, but you have to reach a point of acceptance. Otherwise, how can we learn to trust the process of recovery?

When we are first given the diagnosis of mental illness, our lives feel as if they are suddenly taken from us. Ripped from our hands. We are used to leaving our home when we please, eating when we are hungry or picking up the phone and calling someone. Once we have been diagnosed, we quickly find out: Our life is no longer entirely ours! And that, that, is scary.

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Characteristics of Addiction Co-Dependence

Characteristics of Addiction Co-Dependence

Co-Dependence is often the silent partner of the addictive relationship.  There are several characteristics of addiction including denial, compliance and control.  With the proper help, recovery is possible.

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Ease Anxiety In Nature

Ease Anxiety In Nature

Do you look to nature to ease your anxiety? If not, please try it!

Forest Bathing

Recently it has been all over the internet how Japanese scientists have discovered that the scent of trees, the sound of brooks, and the feel of sunshine have a calming effect. Japanese engage in an activity they call shinrin-yoku, “forest bathing.” And we can all do this.

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The Ballad of Brandon J. Raub

The Ballad of Brandon J. Raub

It took me a couple of days to get the guts to write this column, both because of my experiences with involuntary commitment and the case of former Marine, Brandon J. Raub.

If you don’t know who Raub is, Google him. Raub, who served in both Afghanistan and Iraq, has a Facebook page. Several of his posts are critical of the government; he believes the government was responsible for 9/11. One post included a lyric from “Bring Me Down” by Swollen Members (“Sharpen my axe, I’m here to sever heads”) and another contained a vague line about an upcoming revolution (“The revolution will come for me. Men will be at my door soon to pick me up to lead it.”)

Well, men did indeed show up at Raub’s door–the FBI and Secret Service, with an order for emergency psychiatric commitment. A cooperative Raub was handcuffed and taken away, without being read his rights (you can see the video on YouTube). The police questioned him about his Facebook posts, which the feds described as “terrorist”, then obtained an order for a 30-day commitment at a Veteran’s Affairs hospital. He is being evaluated for post-traumatic stress disorder. He has not been charged with a crime.

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