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A Follower’s Experience with ECT.

This was written by our follower Elaine. She wanted to share her experience with Electro Convulsive Therapy or ECT. Her hope was to shed light on this highly controversial topic.  I’ll start off with a little bit about myself. I’m a 25 year old female. I have been through many different diagnoses since I was in 7th grade. I hear a voice in my head; I used to hear dozens. I’ll admit, the only things I knew of ECT (Electroconvulsion Therapy) were what I’ve seen in the movie One Flew Over the Coo-Coo’s Nest. Just so you know, it’s nothing like that. I was being treated with many different anti-depressants and mood stabilizers. Nothing seemed to be helping me. I was thinking about suicide frequently. I looked up ECT on the Internet and it seemed promising. I asked my doctor if he thinks it would help me. He sent me to a doctor across town to see if I was a good candidate for ECT. After meeting with the nurse, we scheduled my first session. …

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy

DBT stands for Dialectical Behavioral Therapy. Its core components are emotion regulation, mindfulness, distress tolerance, and interpersonal effectiveness. It’s part of the 3rd Generation of Behavioral Therapy and was developed by Marcia Linehan and her colleagues. It was originally developed for people with BPD who are chronically suicidal. Studies found that people who participated in DBT were less likely to drop out of treatment, had fewer hospitalizations, and better treatment outcomes overall. It has been adapted for children, adolescents, couples or as a tool for anyone who needs a little help with emotion regulation (including but not limited to substance use disorders, impulse control disorders, anxiety and mood disorders, and other personality disorders.) DBT focuses on a biopsychosocial (bio- biological components; psycho- psychological components; social- sociological components) model of disorders. It uses dialects or opposing points to develop a broader perspective on problems, helps with learning to see the other side of problems (known as the dialectical pole), helps consider more options as a result, and helps a person get “unstuck.” DBT therapists work hard to …

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

​CBT stands for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. It was developed shortly after Behavioral Therapy and emphasizes cognitions (thoughts) over behaviors but combines both in a symbiotic way. It’s not one specific approach but a model that is ever-changing to fit the needs of each person’s disorder. All techniques share a common belief that thoughts (instead of external circumstances) cause feelings and behaviors. CBT is brief and time limited. It recognizes the importance of a strong therapeutic relationship. It is structured and directive. It relies on psychoeducation, Socratic questioning, and the inductive method. It’s not intended to tell people how to think, act, or feel but to help their thoughts, actions, and behaviors become helpful to them and consistent with reality. Homework is an essential part of the process and is used to help people make progress between sessions. There are a large number of different CBT models that can be blended together to fit a person’s needs. All techniques include cognitive restructuring as developed by the founding fathers of Behavioral Therapy (Ellis and Beck.) An example …

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The Beauty in Destruction

“Later that night I held an atlas in my lap, ran my fingers across the whole world and whispered ‘where does it hurt?’. It answered everywhere, everywhere, everywhere.”-Warsan Shire I’ve always found inspiration in nature. A tree growing out of a boulder can be a quiet example of resiliency and fortitude. A river slowly carving a canyon through a mountain over the course of millennia can be seen as a lesson in patience. Both of these seemingly small forces of nature are entirely unaware that they create a permanent change in the landscape around them. Nature proves that life is struggle, and that beauty comes from that struggle. I found myself seeking retreat in nature again this weekend. My heart broken, and filled with negativity, I set out for a weekend of hiking. I chose hikes known for their steep grades and drop offs because in my mind, this just might be my last day on earth. Onward I trudge, my usual delight with hiking replaced by a crushingly persistent internal dialogue constantly reminding me …

letting go

The Illusion of Safety

“Well don’t talk about it, write it down, but don’t ask for help, But I can’t be honest with even myself, Did you ever wish you were somebody else?” –‘The Difference Between Medicine and Poison is the Dosage’-Circa Survive I spend a lot of time inside my own head. Not in any deliberate attempt to come across as ‘mysterious’ or ‘brooding’, but simply because it’s familiar and I find a sense of security in the familiar. When I stop and actually listen to my internal dialogue I find that most of my time is spent ruminating on the past, catastrophizing present and possible future events, and always-ALWAYS-finding ways to undermine any and all bright spots and accomplishments of my life. The flaws in this logic of sticking to the familiar are glaringly obvious but even still, I tell myself it’s safer than people. After all, who can you really trust with a past you’re ashamed of? It seems to me that snap judgments are more regularly made nowadays than in the past and pack mentalities run …

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Ask About BPD: Self Medication

Ask About BPD: I have a question… why is the only thing that seems to make my son seem half normal to self medicate. When he is stoned he seems to manage so well and seem so at peace and able to cope.. but as soon as his buzz wears off he is crazy angry again ;-( It’s a lose lose situation it seems ….   I’m assuming that the drug in question is marijuana, so I will base my answer on that. Self medicating is not uncommon amongst people suffering from any number of the many varieties of disorders that fall under the depression umbrella, especially those of us living with BPD. Nearly half of those diagnosed with BPD have histories of substance abuse disorder, a shockingly high number, though slightly less surprising when you consider that one of the most common characteristics of BPD is a lack of impulse control.   Why Cannabis: One would seem to be hard-pressed to find a high-strung marijuana user–not to say that they don’t exist (I work …