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Distraction from bipolar symptoms is something I rely on as a coping skill. In fact, it's pretty much an everyday coping skill for me. Bipolar symptom distraction may sound overly simplistic, and sometimes it is (although, not always), but sometimes the simple things just work.
As of this writing, I basically live alone. My family is scattered around the country, and though I have a good amount of friends, none live close. For a while, I've been debating whether or not this living situation is healthy or sustainable in the long run but deciding where to live is stressing me out.
I never really had a hobby, per se. I married young and had three kids. That, plus a full-time job, left little time for me, let alone hobbies. I write—this blog, for instance—and read, but I don't consider either of these hobbies. As a creative outlet, and with the hope that I could channel my thoughts and energy into something that wasn't all about my trauma and residual anxieties, I decided it was time to pursue a hobby.
If you had asked me a year ago to describe someone suffering from depression, I would have given you a generic and straight-up basic answer. My response would have gone something like this: A depressed individual--versus an individual who is currently battling depression--is sad and doesn’t enjoy pleasures that were once joyful. I’ll be honest, my answer is not incorrect, but I can’t seem to shake the hint of judgment in my tone birthed from ignorance towards depression that I had at the time. I would even go as far as to say that I had an unconscious bias towards the illness and mental health issues in general; little did I know, depression, like people, comes in all shapes and sizes.
In a previous blog post, I illustrated how I combat harmful thoughts about food. Now, I want to take this a step further and examine how I recalibrate behaviors around eating. These days, I have a healthier relationship with food than I ever thought possible. I attribute much of this transformation to a framework called intuitive eating—and the decision to make a peace treaty with food as part of my eating disorder recovery.
Verbal abuse can look different to everyone. For example, while some people experience humiliation, others may suffer from gaslighting. Alternatively, some abusers use multiple forms of abuse to control their victims. Unfortunately, my story involves virtually every textbook element of abuse, from verbal assaults to gaslighting and controlling and manipulative behaviors. 
Recently, I came down with a really bad cold, and my schizoaffective disorder and accompanying anxiety made it worse. I honestly thought I would never get well again. Here’s what it was like.
Violent entertainment is nothing new to humankind, but depictions of self-harm in video games can be especially shocking—even more so, perhaps, if you struggle with self-harm yourself. 
Has depression made you feel worthless? If so, you are not alone. You may even believe that you are worthless due to depression. Read on to find out how to fight this.
Over the last couple of weeks, I've been pondering what emotional attributes can be signs of low self-esteem. Recently I've realized that I tend to be oversensitive and quick to anger when experiencing low self-esteem. Today, I'd like to talk about how to remedy that.

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Comments

Liana M. Scott
Hi Izzy. I totally understand where you're coming from. I have felt similarly in the past. What works best for me is setting boundaries for myself and keeping to those boundaries. I'm honest with myself about how much time I need for my tasks (work, etc.), then myself (very important), then others (family and friends). I'm honest with myself about who I want to spend time with and why. Sure, obligation and respect for family comes into play but I often offset that with more time for myself or a really good/favorite friend. Go easy on yourself. And, take care of you first. Without that, none of the rest is possible.
Dan S
Sorry, but this post Fulton is unbelievable. Making a depression into a conspiracy theory. There is no way that you have experienced depression I have. No one forced me to feel the way I do. But, I’ll “pull myself up by the boot straps” and “suck it up buttercup” and get back to life. I think big-pharma could make a killing with a anti-conspiracy theory drug these.
Kimberly Hattabaugh
Thank you for sharing this. I’ve never thought about this natural way to help alleviate anxiety.
Sarah
Hi there. I used to suffer with this condition since I was a baby until I was about 35 years old. . I didn't know that it could have any connection to being sexually abused? That makes a lot of sense though. Because I was sexually abused since I was a baby until I was about 14 years old. I was so ashamed of my trich I would have bald spots on the sides of my head, as a kid , as a teenager, my twenty's, my thirty's. until I finally stopped at the age of about 35 years old. I have also been diagnosed with schizophrenia. I want to help anyone else that is out there suffering with this. I didn't tell ANYONE when I was younger. I was so scared, I already had problems making friends as it was. I didn't even tell my parents. They knew that something was wrong, but they were they type of family that swept everything under the rug that was traumatic or embarrassing to our family. They just wouldn't talk about it. The most they would say to me was to get my hands out of my hair. So it always felt like I was doing something wrong, and couldn't ask for help. I felt judged, and not accepted in my own family. I suffer with depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, ptsd, and on and on... I'm just so relieved to have stopped pulling my hair. The way I stopped was because of my husband. He was upfront with me about my condition, and just asked me what was going on? So I was honest with him, because I trusted him, and he told, why don't you play with your extensions that you put in your hair? Because after awhile there were extensions at the beauty store that I could afford, and when I put them in my hair, it looked like I had more hair. So I started just holding and playing with them in my hands whenever I felt the urge to pull my hair and it worked! Im telling you after suffering for all those years, Finally after awhile just playing with my extensions in my hands, I now have also stopped playing with the extensions and haven't had any urges to pull my own hair anymore. It's been about 10 years now without any urges. I suggest anyone that's going through this, find a wig, hair extensions, or anything that feels like hair to try it. It might be the answer for this tormenting issue. I have long grown our hair now. The only thing is though what I noticed is I still have hair stuck in the gums of my teeth. It seems as though it's still growing in my gums and teeth. I'm too embarrassed to tell my dentist. My tongue is always trying to feel for the hair in my teeth. I hope I helped someone reading this. I would have loved to have figured this out a long time ago.
Hannah
Thank you for bringing so much value to this community with this blog. It has been such a joy reading your pieces and being able to relate to your journey . You have created a safe space of learning and growth where those of us who struggle with the similar Demons can come to not feel so alone! Thank you for all that you are and sharing about this topic.