Urban Legend: Suicide Is More Frequent During the Holidays

You are Not Alone. You Are Not to Blame.

With Help, You Will Feel Better

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7 Mental Health Tips to Avoid Holiday Stress

1. Be kind to yourself. Practice being non-judgmental about yourself. Be mindful of  your internal chatter; if it is negative, stop and think, Would I say this to/about a friend? And don’t say it about yourself. Counter negative thoughts with realistic reframing!  Change “I won’t get all of this done because I’m all alone!” which is multi-layered, packed with anxiety and then secondarily layered up with fears of being alone to “I can do a reasonable amount of things this holiday season.”

Mindfulness practices are skills that can be learned (Istock/awelo)

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BirthTouch® Small Business Saturday Free Book Download!

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2017 – Day 1 of 30 Days of Gratitude

Today begins my 30 Days of Gratitude.

Day #1: I’m grateful for my good health. After fighting for my health for almost 2 years, I feel good once again and I’m grateful for every day that my body is healthy and functioning.

You can follow along for the next 30 days on my social media accounts for all 30 of the Gratitude Posts!

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Interview with Kathy Morelli: Journey of a PPD Survivor

Ivy Shih Leung, postpartum depression author, activist and award winning blogger,  interviewed me for her blog. She is a passionate, outspoken advocate for women, families and social justice.

Some background about Ivy from her blog:  Ivy is  a PPD survivor.  She had her daughter in December 2004 and suffered from PPD about 6 weeks later.  Fortunately, with the help of Paxil which she started taking in February 2005, her frightening experience came to an end 4 weeks later.   Tom Cruise’s infamous rantings “There’s no such thing as a chemical imbalance” triggered an intense reaction and an overwhelming desire to tell him, and others like him, to “Shut up unless you’ve been through PPD yourself.”

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EPDS can help you determine if you are postpartum depressed

Perinatal mood disorders are the most common complication of childbirth. 15 – 20 % of women experience symptoms of depression and anxiety during pregnancy and in the first year after giving birth. Postpartum depression is the most common term used, but there are a few differential diagnoses that can be found in the perinatal mood distress category. Postpartum depression (PPD), postpartum anxiety (PPA), postpartum obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), bipolar disorders, postpartum psychosis and postpartum birth trauma. You can find out more about these categories at the BirthTouch® website or at Postpartum Support International.

Screening

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EMDR, PTSD, Neuroplasticity and “Limbic System Therapy”

 

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is an evidence-based therapy used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) . Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, the Director of the Trauma Institute in Boston, is a strong proponent of EMDR for the treatment of trauma.

Learning and reconditioning of existing circuits occur when neuronal connections are built and rebuilt. What wires together, fires together. (Istock:Sahskinw)

Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, over a lifetime of treating persons with trauma, has evolved the treatment of trauma to include what he calls “limbic system therapy” (van der Kolk, 2015). Limbic system therapy uses body-based therapies to focus on calming reactive hyper- and hypo -aroused emotional brain centers using body based therapies.

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DBT STOP & TIP Skills: Life is worth living even if there is pain

Pain and distress are a part of life and cannot be avoided and Life is worth living even if there is pain

A definition and overview of DBT’s Distress Tolerance can be found here. Read the rest of this entry

Book Review: We Were Gonna Have a Baby, but We Had an Angel Instead by Pat Schwiebert

Helping Children Cope When the Family Has Infant Loss

A pregnancy loss is a primal, deep loss. And often these parents have young children who were looking forward to having a little brother or little sister. Even in their time of pain, parents need to find ways to answer their surviving children’s questions about death and help them cope with their emotions. Miscarriage is a family event. In my previous article there is some information about how to talk to children about infant death.

Children best express their emotions using right-brain activities like play, drawing and story-telling. Books are a great resource for parents to help their children sort out and express their feelings. Read the rest of this entry

I finally turned around and saw dementia’s ugly, unwanted face

My mom passed away the summer of 2017.

I didn’t have the emotional stamina for writing about it

as we lived through it.

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