Some of you may be familiar with the New York Times weekly column Modern Love. This is inspired by it. There is a phenomenon known in the circles of the severely mentally ill as Hospital Goggles. The term describes the tendency of inhabitants of mental hospitals and treatment centers to romanticize their fellow patients, sometimes doctors. You’ve seen it on Survivor or Big Brother, perhaps; in… Continue reading Modern Love: Hospital Goggles
I’ve dated a robust handful of people. Some relationships were ended by me, some weren’t. Some went out with a bang, others simply petered out or ended sweetly. Some were intense and romantic, some abusive, while others were more casual and non-committal. If there’s one thing I have learned since my first “relationship” in seventh… Continue reading My relationship goals? Mentally healthy.
Spoiler Alert: You don’t know him unless I want you to, so don’t try to find out who he is. But you almost certainly know people like him, though I wish you didn’t. Allow me to present to you a few of his facets. If you recognize this person in your life, at any point,… Continue reading When is a relationship abusive? Let me show you.
On a really tough day last month, feeling nearly desperate about a major problem I was having at work, I wallowed for hours in helpless fear and anger. Finally I reined myself in by briefly imagining that these feelings are what my mentally ill daughter goes through perhaps every day to some degree and some… Continue reading What’s Hardest About Being the Parent of a Mentally Ill Young Person? That’s really the wrong question.
To crave connection with others is only natural, in most cases, and such connection also happens naturally, for many people. Social relationships form every day, strengthen over time, and may weaken or break, leading to new ones — a glorified cycle. However, many of us, myself included, struggle to continually form relationships and socialize, especially… Continue reading Loneliness (Through the Lens of A Social Butterfly)
I’m at my most vulnerable when I'm lonely, by far. Most of my family members are introverts, and can go long, long periods of time without needing human interaction. My sister and father are especially like this, as are many of my extended family members. My mother and I- me to an extreme- are reliant… Continue reading Loneliness (Olivia)
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Being home or with family for the holidays can be stressful for anyone. The constant noise, tension between different family members, etcetera can put strain on even the most neurotypical of well adjusted people. However, as both a sufferer of mental illness and a tried-and-true trans man, I find that people such as myself can… Continue reading Homo for the Holidays – Coping with Family
In the ages-old clash between nature and nurture, when it comes to mental illness, there is no right answer. Mental illness is often genetic; I’ve been asked by every doctor I’ve ever seen about family history of mental illness. Almost every disorder, too, is at least somehow affected by a person’s upbringing, from infancy to… Continue reading Parenting Mentally Ill Children: Part 1
In general, it’s better to say something than to say nothing at all. When I was in middle school, I didn’t understand this. I saw friends struggling in the sixth and seventh grade and I froze. I figured that if I said anything to them, they’d be triggered (this, before “triggered” was such a buzzword)… Continue reading 2 Well-Meaning Things NOT to Say to Struggling Friends
Gift giving usually needn’t be much different for those with mental health issues. The essentials- paying close attention to their likes, dislikes, being appropriate, making it personalized and meaningful- all still apply. If you follow those rules, you’ll likely create a great gift experience for your recipient who is struggling with their mental health. However,… Continue reading A Mental Health Holiday Gift Guide