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I'm a person on the Internet, which means large corporations like Google and Facebook have likely collected enough data on me to recreate me as a Metaverse AI. The benefit of this is that my social media feeds are finely tuned to align with my interests, and Instagram recommends me products that I can't afford but definitely want. That said, I sometimes worry that the algorithms know me too well, especially when TikTok started showing me video after video of people discussing their attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Before I recovered from binge eating disorder (BED), I would not have identified myself as a creative person. My identity at the time revolved around sports, athleticism, and my appearance as a student-athlete. This image I held onto kept me in an awful cycle of restricting and binge eating. I felt like I had to keep up an athletic appearance. After I graduated high school, I knew I'd outgrown my old identity, but I did not know where to begin outside of that structured model.
"He's totally psychotic." "My breakup was totally psycho." How many times have you heard those types of phrases? I've heard it many, many times. While it's pretty common these days to have some knowledge about mental illness terms, psycho, psychotic, and even psychosis tend not to be understood. Let's delve into the meanings of psycho, psychotic, and psychosis, both from a common vernacular point of view and from an accuracy point of view.
Ever since I was diagnosed with social anxiety disorder, I have always perceived my anxiety as a bully and as my worst enemy. I hated that I struggled with anxiety and wanted nothing more than to get rid of it. Why wouldn't I? After all, my anxiety had stolen many opportunities and experiences I could have had if it hadn't made my day-to-day social interactions so tough. However, all of this changed when I learned to acknowledge the ways in which my anxiety has helped me and started expressing gratitude towards my anxiety.
Allow me to join the chorus and say it’s Mental Health Awareness Month. Each year, the mental health community comes together during May to amplify the discussions around mental health to reduce the stigma of mental illness and show people they’re not alone in their struggles.
I believe there is nothing unprofessional in being honest about your mental health at work. Since emails are an official means of communication in workplaces everywhere, employees should ensure they are real. Of course, the onus is on the employer because anyone in a mental health-unfriendly organization will hesitate to disclose mental health issues. But this does not mean employees are powerless. And in a pandemic world, where more and more people are suffering from conditions like depression, genuine emails are crucial.
One common trait of abuse victims I've noticed is their resiliency. I found that through the years, I perfected being self-sufficient. This admirable attribute is not as terrific as some may believe, however. My ability to tackle struggles on my own without asking for help is a negative side effect of years of abuse. 
Although I am not a fan of claiming labels as an identity, I have noticed the more I use the term "anxiety," the more people seem to relate to me. But I have had to separate the concept of being anxious versus feeling anxious. I used to say, "I have anxiety," making it a part of who I am. Since starting my journey to enlightenment, I have learned that anxiety is not something that I am. It is something that I feel. 
I am grateful for the podcasts that help me maintain mental wellness, but first, this background story: In April of last year, while the world was just beginning to open back up, I was experiencing the bleak fallout from a traumatic breakup. Much like when I was at my lowest low, battling depression later that summer, I was constantly searching for ways to forget. One of my favorite ways to accomplish this was going for long, and I mean long, walks. I would put on my shoes, walk down my apartment stairs and just walk. Sometimes three miles, sometimes five, and nine or 10 on the bad days.
My dad has a way with words. Decades ago, when I started hearing voices, he dubbed them the “Blue Meanies” after the bad guys in the animated Beatles movie Yellow Submarine. And he calls my negative self-talk the musings of “Bad News Betsy.”

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Comments

Rebecca Chamaa
I agree the diagnosis of schizophrenia does not define an entire human being. We are more than our diagnosis.
Rebecca Chamaa
I have schizophrenia and don't feel safe with guns around. I understand how some people would feel differently, especially those who hunt.
Natasha Tracy
Hi M,

Thank you for your comment. I'm not aware of these cases. If you could point to a source, that would be great.

Thanks.

-- Natasha Tracy
Mani
I have been cutting for a long time, I've even had stitches and I often throw up on purpose sometimes because I can't taste the food I am eating and sometimes just a habit, recently I can't look at my reflection without feeling nauseous. I know it all points to a bit of depression I guess but I remember and I still do feel like I do because I want attention. It's really sickening, I'll go to great lengths to hide it but I still want people to find out. I wish I could stop wanting the attention. Sorry English is my third language.
Karen
I have been with my husband since 1999. I was 18 and he was 24. I saw the red flags from the beginning but it is my own stupid fault for staying. We now have 2 beautiful boys who are nearly in high school. They are my life. I stay in this toxic relationship for them. I have been dragged through the garden by my hair, had my finger dislocated when he threw an ashtray at me. He has rubbed my face in urine and faeces. I now need a disc replacement in my neck from this person. Till this day, he will not take responsibility or apologize for any of this. Today he swore and demeaned me in front of a tradie to such a point I was going to grab the kids and leave. Every time, everything is my fault and he has only acted in this way because of me. Deep down I k ow that I need to take the kids and leave but for some stupid reason I still love him. This is never in front of the kids and they are never in harms way.