Mental health blogger (Mental Health @ Home) | Former MH nurse | Living with major depressive disorder | Author of 4 books; latest is A Brief History of Stigma
A Brief History of Stigma
Stigma can have a huge impact on the lives of people living with mental illness. That needs to change, but how can we make it happen? A Brief History of Stigma explores the past and present of stigma to give a solid basis to examine strategies to reduce stigma and critically evaluate their effectiveness. It also incorporates the author's experiences as a former mental health nurse living with a chronic mental illness.
The book is divided into three parts. Part I explores what exactly stigma is, including relevant sociological theory and common stereotypes. Part II looks at some of the context
Managing the Depression Puzzle: Second Edition
Managing the Depression Puzzle provides a comprehensive look at how to manage depression. The goal is to provide a wide range of pieces that might fit in your own unique depression puzzle, so you can pick and choose what does fit for you. No one strategy (or set of strategies) is going to work for every individual, but having information about what the options are will put you in a better position to make choices about your mental health.
Psych Meds Made Simple
People living with mental illness are often left out of the loop when it comes to understanding how exactly medications work. This book will explain pharmacology in a simplified way to help you understand the effects, both positive and negative, of psych meds, and why these effects occur. It's everything you didn't realize you wanted to know about medications!
Making Sense of Psychiatric Diagnosis
Making Sense of Psychiatric Diagnosis aims to cut through the misinformation, stigma, and assumptions that surround mental illness and give a clear picture of what mental illness really is.
The book pairs diagnostic criteria and descriptions for a cross-section of mental illnesses in the DSM-5 with nineteen first-hand narrative accounts of what it’s like to live with those conditions. The book is also infused with the author’s own experience as a mental health nurse and person living with depression.
Why Stereotypes About Psychosis Are Harmful
People tend to fear the unknown. While there is prejudice associated with most mental health conditions, psychosis is arguably the symptom the average person finds the most frightening.
Psychosis refers to a cluster of symptoms involving hallucinations, delusions and/or profound disorganization. It can occur in primary psychotic disorders, like schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder, and also in other conditions like bipolar disorder or major depressive disorder.
To the uneducated person, ...
Rainbow Model of Mental Illness Functioning
The term high-functioning can oversimplify the complex reality of living with mental illness. The rainbow model attempts to capture some of that complexity across multiple symptom and functional domains, to give a more holistic view of the impact of chronic mental illness.
Learning About Why Depression Makes Me So Slow
While psychomotor retardation (a slowing of movement and thoughts) has long been recognized as a symptom of depression, it’s not on most people’s radar when they think of depression. It’s a symptom I’ve experienced throughout much of the course of my depressive illness, and it’s a significant factor in the level of disability from my illness. However, it’s also quite difficult to effectively convey to people what it’s like unless they’re actually able to see me when I’m slow.
What is psychomo...
Mental Health Professionals Aren’t Immune to Mental Illness
To say that it was strange to be a patient on a psych ward at a time when I worked as a nurse on a psych ward would be an understatement.
I was 27 when major depressive disorder first came knocking at my door. After an initial period of denial, I was able to tick off the diagnostic boxes in my head and recognize that yes, what I was experiencing was depression. I had the low mood, inability to enjoy anything, hopelessness, and poor sleep and appetite that tend to characterize depression. Bein...
The Silent Scream
I contributed a personal narrative to The Silent Scream anthology.
The Silent Scream: An Anthology of Despair, Struggle and Hope is a collection of raw, honest and inspirational memoirs, anecdotes, poems and art works about a range of topics including eating disorders, self-harm, childhood sexual abuse, rape, addiction, anxiety, depression, PTSD and generally feeling worthless in a society demanding perfection.
Blogging as a Therapeutic Tool for Mental Health
Journalling is recognized as a useful tool in managing mental health. Online blogging offers a way to get many of the same benefits using a medium that can be highly interactive.
Blogging has exploded in popularity in recent years. The popular blogging platform WordPress reports that in June 2019 that it has 20 billion pages, with 70 million new blogposts and 409 million viewers each month.
Limited research has been done on the potential mental health benefits of blogging...
8 Holistic Strategies to Help Manage Depression
(Published an article in Live Your Life on Purpose)
About one in five people experience depression at some point in their lifetime. While it would be nice if there was a one-size-fits-all treatment strategy that would be both effective and acceptable for everyone, that’s simply not the case.
Medications and psychotherapy have the strongest evidence base to support their use in depression, they aren’t always fully effective and they’re not everyone’s strategy of choice.
I Am Not My Medication: Discussing the Stigma of Taking Meds
There are a lot of people out there who are anti-medication for one reason or another. They may have had personal negative experiences taking meds, they may believe that mental illness is caused by trauma and can only be treated by addressing that trauma, or they may view medication as something that's artificial and toxic and therefore shouldn't be put into the body.
Despite the arguments against psychiatric medications, though, they can and do save lives. Mine, for example.
The Real Story About "Shock Therapy"
What Is Electroconvulsive Therapy?
There are few medical treatments with as notorious a reputation as "shock therapy", yet that reputation is based far more in myth than fact. The modern medical term is electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), and it plays an important role in the treatment of depression and other conditions. A Canadian Psychiatric Association position paper defines ECT as " a medical procedure in which a brief electrical stimulus is used to induce a cerebral seizure under controlled...
Turning Outward (Bella Grace)
Find ways for discovering magic in the ordinary through the beautifully penned stories and striking photographs inside Bella Grace that capture life’s beautiful journey.
Bella Grace makes the perfect gift for any special woman in your life, and it also provides an interactive, creative space where readers can respond to prompts and fill in their own thoughts directly on the page.
Inside Issue 20:
Turning Outward by Ashley Peterson
Work and Living with a Mental Health Disability
Mental illness is also not typically the first thing that comes to mind when the average person thinks about disability.
“So, what do you do for work?” That’s a pretty standard, run-of-the-mill question if you’re meeting someone for the first time, and one of the reasons why I dislike being around people.