Showing posts from December, 2020

And on the 5th day of therapy my true shrink gave to me...a lesson about boundaries.

"If you can't handle me at my worst....then; good for you- I commend and respect you for setting healthy boundaries." And on the 5th day of therapy my true shrink gave to me...a lesson about boundaries. Quite frankly, it blew my mind.  I always believed that boundaries were simple; you either had them or you didn't. I was wrong.  Turns out, boundaries are complicated, and even more complicated for someone with a mood disorder like mine (or people with trauma, psychosis, ADD/ADHD, depression etc.) This is crucial, particularly because boundaries are how we navigate our most important relationships; familial, romantic, parental, professional, communal etc.  There are three types of boundaries. 1. Rigid     - Safe     - No Budging 2. Flexible 3 . Porous     - Unsafe     - Very Open As human beings, it is natural that we fluctuate between all three of these different types of boundaries. Where it gets tricky is when we have a mental illness or a trauma and

I fought the "shrink" and the "shrink" won.

Group Therapy Lunch Break Vibes. Have you ever been in a situation where you hear someone present an idea and you know it's valid, but you simply want them to be wrong? You want them to be wrong so badly that before they even start talking, you have a list of rebuttals so long you could be a member of a world class debate team? That was me on last Tuesday in Week 1 of Group Therapy. What was the session entitled you ask? "Cognitive Behavioral Therapy." And yes. If you were wondering, even as I wrote this, I said it with an exaggerated eye-roll; not, because I don't believe in it, simply because I believe that in my therapy experience and in the media, the idea is a bit played out and never quite actually used in play. Nevertheless, we were asked to do an exercise.  The exercise was this; 1. Draw a triangle. 2. At the top of the triangle write a persistent problematic thought you have. 3. At the bottom right corner of the triangle write persistent feelings caused by

"It's not a broken arm, but I must take leave."

The past few months, my brain, has felt, broken. Broken like the state of our economy. Broken like our justice system. Broken like our country's unity. Broken. I thought, for a while, that I could DIY it, that I could throw some fancy zebra duct tape, positive affirmations, and hot sauce on it and call it a day. I thought that, if I waited it out, took a few extra naps, drank a few extra glasses of wine and told myself it would be okay, it would be. Newsflash. It wasn't. Everything was suffering; my body, my health, my nerves, my work, my relationships with others but most importantly- my relationship with myself. I started to hate myself and more than I ever hated myself. That scared me.  It took a quite a few bad decisions, terrible moments, and hard conversations to realize that this was going to take a village and that village very well could be a village of strangers, again. We had a "Humpty Dumpty" situation on our hands. Below are the steps in my mind, as I tho

The Meaning of 2020 for Someone Who Suffered a Severe Mental Health Crisis 1/6/2020

There are a lot of memes, posts, hashtags etc. that espouse how bad 2020 has been. I respect them. I honor them. I also relate to them in a way that goes beyond a Global Pandemic and Stay at Home Orders. For context, New Years Day morning in 2020 began with a Tinder hook up gone wrong, a polar plunge, and an inpatient hospitalization 5 days later. Before the pandemic, this was already the worst year of my entire life. Fast forward two weeks, and I lost a beloved job and community. I was a woman on the edge. The edge of nothing. As I sit here at my desk, in my office, of a new apartment for my son and I- I reflect.  I am not as beautiful, as skinny, as wonderfully ambitious as I was this time last year. What I am though, is honest. I know my limitations, I know my faults. I know that I have to do better for my son and the people around me and I am trying. 2020 was a year of trauma and change for everyone but it specifically was for me. This blog, I hope will serve as hope. We, the Bipol