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Maintaining friendships is no easy task, and it's all the more difficult when you have a mental illness. I should know; I struggle with double depression and generalized anxiety disorder, and many of my friends have mental illnesses like anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). That said, it is possible to sustain friendships even when you live with a mental illness. Here's how my friends and I do it. 
In recent years, the practice of intermittent fasting has become a mainstream wellness trend—but while it might prove beneficial for some, intermittent fasting is not an option for my eating disorder recovery. I have been thinking about this lately because intermittent fasting sounds harmless at face value. It's a dietary plan that focuses on when rather than what to eat, which seems reasonable. But I am also self-aware enough to know that even well-intentioned parameters or structures around eating can turn into full-blown restriction. So, intermittent fasting in eating disorder recovery is not for me.
When we experience a stressful situation, we experience a stress response, also known as the fight-flight-or-freeze response. How we respond depends on several factors, but I’ve found that I often freeze in stressful situations. Because of this, I’ve had to learn ways to unfreeze to help me move forward in certain circumstances.
I've used art to manage my mental illness. Art and tapping into creativity is an excellent source of self-therapy. When I was in intensive therapy during a difficult point of my life, I was introduced to art as therapy. I was skeptical at first, but the idea that art could help manage my mental illness and be soothing and stress-relieving opened a new door for me in my recovery.
Taking intentional pauses in my life has been transformative for my self-esteem. For a long time, I struggled with feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt. Life seemed like a relentless race, and I was perpetually out of breath, unable to keep up with its demands. It wasn't until I started taking intentional pauses that I began to see a change in my self-esteem and overall mental health.
Ghosting can affect a person's depression. And while people with mental illnesses like bipolar are known to sometimes ghost others, we, ourselves, get ghosted too. So, what happens to a person's depression when they're ghosted?
Coping with cognitive distortions can be a challenge. In the intricate landscape of our brains, thoughts can often be like tangled balls of yarn, distorting reality and discoloring our perception of the world around us. For those of us coping with depression, these cognitive distortions can become particularly prominent, taking the tangled yarn and weaving a complex tapestry of negativity and despair. It becomes imperative to untwist our thinking and return to a more logical and realistic mindset. In the past year, through training peers about cognitive distortions and mental health wellness, I have come up with a couple of strategies to assist with coping with cognitive distortions. 
When you have a history of trauma, dealing with betrayal can feel devastating. We all face betrayals of sorts throughout our lives. Unfortunately, hurt people hurt people. Some parents exploit their children; some spouses have affairs; some friends backstab their childhood besties, etc. Betrayal is all around us. We betray others in small ways; they betray us just the same. Sometimes, it's unintentional. Other times, it's purposeful. Nevertheless, it happens. But add a history of trauma to betrayal, and it's even more detrimental.
People, I feel wrongly, assume that you are either depressed or moody. When I was a teenager, I used to get frequent mood swings. At this age, I would also get episodes of depression. Unfortunately, I was labeled moody, and this was one of the primary reasons I was diagnosed with depression in my twenties. Honestly, I believe this is pretty common: depression and moodiness are considered mutually exclusive. However, according to personal experience, a person can experience both depression and moodiness.
Technology does not have to be an enemy for recovering gambling addicts. The right digital tools for gambling recovery can help you achieve and maintain abstinence and even improve emotional wellbeing. Let's take a look at how technology can aid in gambling recovery.

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C
I feel I cannot hold on. For the last few years I have been loosing more and more with no recovery. My breakdowns are costing me my family relationships. They just do know what else to do and they are feeling the pain too. We have no help,hope no one I just kept hoping I do not inhale another breath help
Elizabeth Caudy
Hi Jaime Lee, Thank you for your comment. What you're describing could be signs of a mental illness, but without knowing more about you, it's impossible to say which one, if any. If what you're describing is causing you distress (which it sounds like it is) or if you think you might have a mental illness, you should talk to a medical professional. If schizophrenia is a possibility, you will likely need a referral to a psychiatrist. When you see someone, make sure to be as open as you can about what you're experiencing. I know it can be scary having these thoughts, but you're not alone, and seeing a psychiatrist can help you figure out what's going on and how to get better.
Jaime Lee Casiano
Hi I'm Jaime Lee Casiano I think that I might have schizophrenia. I don't hallucinate though I can be very delusional sometimes believing things are going on that know one else sees thy could be true they could be false I know that but I feel like I have to simi believe them in order to protect myself. Im overall a very paranoid person It's like I wana know everything that's going on around me so I try to read people in evry possible way you could read someone. I try to find the side of them they don't want anyone else knowing about. My mind is always racing thinking about different scenarios. It's Also hard for me to communicate properly with people or form relationships though I wana be social there for I die inside.


Dawn Gressard
Hello Andrea!
You are absolutely correct when you said, "They're still going to act like people." People are people who will act in ways we wish they wouldn't -- even the ones closest to us. That statement can be a large pill to swallow, yet it is one that we need to get down if we want to sustain our mental health. I have a specific page in my journal that lists things I can control and can't. I often look at it to remind myself that I can't control other people's actions, choices, or feelings.
Douglas Howe
Trauma for 34 years