Self-harm is not something I talk about often, however, it is part of my past and my journey living with bipolar disorder. I can tell you that it was not a cry for help. No one noticed, and the majority of those who are closest to me will find out through this post that it even happened. I believed cutting would release the pain, almost as if it was trapped in my body and needed a way to escape. Therapists used to give me a list of coping skills that lasted for a day and then ended because they did not work. Take five deep breaths and count to ten! The main issue with these types of techniques was that I could not visually see the progress. Read more
Life with Schizophrenia: A Letter to My Younger Self
Article By: Greyon Fernandes
As my 24th birthday approaches marking the end of my adolescence, I thought I’d reflect on the grimmest but strongest years of my life.
Dear 16-year-old Greyon,
It hurts me to no end when I realise how young you were when it all began. A large part of your adolescence was stolen. Maybe on some level I’m trying to console myself by preparing you for the future. However, I know this isn’t possible. No one’s ever prepared for psychosis. Nothing can prepare them for what awaits. Read more
I jumped from the couch spilling cereal all over my shirt reaching for my computer both excited and in disbelief when I saw my moms text message, “Must check out this restaurant-Van Gogh is Bipolar!” A small restaurant located in the Philippines named after Vincent van Gogh and designed to capture features of a bipolar mind.
These are the stories of people living with bipolar disorder that get left out of the mainstream media. These are the stories that could one day create a much larger platform for individuals living with mental illness to feel empowered by what makes them different. I have spent the last couple days gathering information about this restaurant, but to start for those of you who are curious about Van Gogh’s connection to bipolar disorder let me explain. Read more
When I am too low or too high or insecure about the things that make me different in this world, the one thing that always seems to speak to me, no matter the mood, is quotes and poems. A collection of words, so elegantly put together, that they inspire those of us who can feel them the deepest, and need them the most. Read more
You want to become a mental health influencer and create an account on Instagram, but do not know where to begin? Don’t worry, you are not alone! When I published my blog, and created an Instagram account for it, I was in the exact same boat. Advocates are utilizing Instagram to talk about mental health, because it is dedicated to users who want to spread awareness about issues that matter. You have a voice, a story and a unique message that deserves to be shared. Once you’ve created it, make sure to message me on my Instagram so I can follow! So lets get started! Read more
The Dog Days: What Its like to Live with Schizophrenia
Article By: Greyon Fernandes
Since my diagnosis, people have asked me: ‘What is it like to live with schizophrenia?’. Until this point, I’ve responded in a very clinical manner: ‘I had and still have intrusive thoughts’, ‘My speech gets distorted at times’ – clinically known as word salad or schizophrasia, ‘I suffer from tactile hallucinations’. I could go on.
Recently, however, I came across an event from the 1960s that accurately describes my experience with schizophrenia, “A visceral event – the kidnapping of Barbara Mackle”. Read more
I am not a relationship expert, but I’ve had my heart broken more than I’d like to admit. On this journey in heartbreak, I realized that a significant part of emotionally surviving a breakup is to take a break from anything that could be toxic in your environment, including social media. No, you do not have to delete everything or go into hibernation, but you do have to stay off them as much as possible and take the initiative to block or unfollow your ex to prevent you from seeing their posts. It relates to the old saying, “Out of sight out of mind.” Read more
How Does Financial Stress Affect Your Mental Health?
Article By: Chrissy Phelps
Nationwide, around 33% of Americans are in debt, though percentages vary significantly from state to state. In Louisiana, for instance, around 46% of adults have debts in collection, compared to only 17% of those living in Minnesota. Debt is considered the number one source of stress and it doesn’t look like the situation will be improving anytime soon. Statistics indicate that for around 20% of people, mortgages are the largest source of debt, followed by student loans. Among millennials, however, student loans are the leading source of debt with median amounts owed hovering between $10,000 and $14,000. Read more
World Bipolar Day is important every year, but this year it is time to make a statement with all the recent events that have taken place. You can help spread awareness on Friday, March 30th, by sharing posts and information on mediated platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin or via your methods of communication. In 2018, social justice movements are thriving, and this includes mental health. Mental health influencers are present on social media more than ever, and it is time we speak up on a day where we have the general publics attention.
Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.-MLK
In Hospital For The Long Haul? How to Look After Your Mental Health
Article By: Chrissy Phelps
According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information as many as five million hospital trips result in admission to long-term care locations. So, whether you’ve recently experienced a major accident or you have a chronic, debilitating illness, there are many possible reasons why you may find yourself staying in hospital for an extended period. In addition to the physical pain you might go through, it’s also possible that you’ll find yourself experiencing mental health issues like depression; but whether you decide to take medication or simply talk through your problems, there are many ways to look after yourself. Read more