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Elizabeth Caudy
I got my first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine yesterday. Before this event, I was very excited to be getting a shot--and excited that I’d managed to finally ace an appointment. But my schizoaffective disorder made me anxious as well as excited. Here’s why I was anxious.
Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC, DAIS
The following two powerful mindfulness techniques can reduce anxiety's strong grip. Living mindfully is about being present in your moment and with yourself no matter what that moment is like or how you feel.
George Abitante
I've learned how to self-care in 30 seconds or less because the last few months have been really hectic for me. I've been getting up to speed on several projects in my Ph.D. program, learning new statistical techniques, keeping up with coursework, and it's been really tough to build in time to focus on my own wellbeing. For me, it's been difficult having most of my work time at home because I really like working in a designated workspace and just using my home as a place to relax, so having my work and relaxation spaces completely overlap has made it even more difficult to create a space for self-care for 30 seconds or any other length of time.
Sarah Sharp
Life is tough when your child has a mental illness. It gets even tougher when you do, too.
TJ DeSalvo
I’ve mentioned my cat in passing before several times on this blog, often in the context of discussing how owning a pet can help with anxiety.
Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC, DAIS
Healthy relationships, whether they're friendships, romantic relationships, family ties, or connections with coworkers, are important for our mental health and wellbeing. Unfortunately, not all relationships are healthy and positive. Some are downright abusive, and others, while falling short of abuse, are toxic.  Here are six early warning signs of toxic behavior to help you spot dangerous actions and attitudes before they escalate or you become trapped in a relationship that may harm your wellbeing and interfere with your quality of life.
Megan Griffith
Making time for self-care is necessary, although it has never been at the top of my list of priorities. I'm a wife and mom, I run my own small business, and I'm often so consumed by things like potty training or launching a new product that taking time for self-care sounds ridiculous. Why would I take the time to do my skincare routine at night when I could get an extra three minutes of sleep? Why would I exercise for half an hour when I could be using that time to catch up on emails? For a long time, self-care has lived at the bottom of my to-do list, constantly shuffled around and ignored.
Rizza Bermio-Gonzalez
Anxiety and anger feel a lot alike. An increased heart rate, feeling flushed, tense muscles, uncomfortable stomach issues -- these symptoms may be familiar to you if you experience chronic anxiety. They may also sound like things you felt the last time you were angry. 
Martyna Halas
Practicing gratitude may not seem like an effective tool for preventing self-harm. Indeed, when you’re in distress, feeling thankful for seemingly trivial things can feel nearly impossible or even aggravating to your self-harm thoughts. However, research shows that expressing gratitude regularly can rewire our brains and improve mental health. It can also serve as a protective factor for suicidal ideation and self-injury.
Nicola Spendlove
Respecting the boundaries of mentally ill loved ones should be a given, but sometimes we push these boundaries -- I've certainly been guilty of this in the past. Even when this is done out of good intent, I don't believe it is a fair thing to do. I have learned a lot on this topic through my experience with my brother, who has chronic mental health problems. Here's a bit of a reflection on those learnings.

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Comments

Jordan
Hi there, I could use some insight into this. my girlfriend and I found her daughters journal and it appears she is writing down and having conversations with multiple people writhing though it’s really just her (each has a different handwriting)... we are concerned and do not really understand what is going on.. I’m aware DID is very rare and have a hard time thinking that’s what this could be, but in journaling would someone with DID experience this?
Laura A. Barton
Hi there. I totally get what you're saying about how it's a relief to be able to relate and have someone apart from ourselves show that we're not isolated in these feelings. Especially when dealing with these sorts of invasive thoughts about dying, it can be helpful to not feel alone with it although you wouldn't for the world wish this on anyone else. It sounds like we're on similar pages: we accept the suicidal ideation, but we don't want to scare those around us by sharing that these thoughts exist exists. I assure you that I hear you and see you in this . You're definitely not alone.
JJ
My story is similar with the ghosting when he’s upset. He drove home at midnight after an imagined slight/completely illogical after two huge glasses of wine. Would not answer the phone all night and next day. Returned things we had bought together. I have many examples of drama and pain and immaturity. We only dated for 4 months but he was so incredibly loving and sweet when not in a mood. I was never allowed to have my own moods/he could not handle it and they were mild compared to his. He insulted me SO bad the other night as we crawled into bed. I was up all night with tears and waves of stress. I begged him to apologize and he insisted he meant it and that “it was not that bad”. The entire 4 months have been either extremely loving or extremely irritable. That day I made him leave his key and take his things out of my house. All he had to do was acknowledge my pain. I just don’t understand it but it’s on par with the whole way the relationship has been. This happened yesterday and although I feel relief I still love him and want to make sure he’s ok. He is ignoring my texts and phone calls completely. I’m sure by now I’m “against him” like “everybody else”. I know in my heart I did the right thing because I’m recovering from a car accident and I also have my own mental health to worry about. I know my life with him would be very hard. It’s all so painful. I hope he sticks with his new therapist and that we can work it out one day. If anyone would like to answer this post I would really appreciate it. He’s such a tortured soul who literally does not know how to have a respectful, adult conversation geared towards resolution. Instead he just escalates. I feel my own mental health regressing.
Natasha Tracy
Hi Aislinn ,

You ask a good question. In my opinion, I would err on the side of more communication, rather than less. This lets your boyfriend know that someone cares. That's a big thing when you're not doing well. And if you feel good about making that connection, then yes, I would say go ahead.

Now, if he asks you to stop, then that's different, but without his input, I say, yes, make contact.

- Natasha Tracy
Natasha Tracy
Hi Travis,

You certainly have a right to your opinion and point of view; but as one of those people who suffer from one of those debilitating illnesses, my point of view differs. I could list 1000 reasons why, but here are two:

One, we never know when a new treatment might work. Are the odds against someone who has been trying treatments for a long time? Probably. But that doesn't mean that a different treatment type such as ketamine infusions or electroconvulsive therapy or a new medication on the market won't be successful. I have a hard time "letting someone go" when I _know_ there is hope to be had.

Two, I have been in the place where I wanted to die and I have been in the place where I have tried and failed treatment after treatment. I, in fact, tried to die. But here, standing on the other side of that, I can honestly say, I was wrong. I wasn't the only one -- the doctors were wrong too -- but the point is, there is always a new avenue, you just have to find it, and I did. And now it's 11 years later. And it's not that it's been a glorious 11 years or anything, but it has been 11 years worth having, and that matters.

Yes, if you would like to consider the point of view of a very sick person who de facto isn't capable of making good choices (serious mental illness does that to your brain), that's certainly one option, but as I said, my view differs.

- Natasha Tracy