Mental Illness/Glenn Close
Post ReplyPost New TopicPosted 4/29/2013 by bostonscrapper in NSBR Board
 

bostonscrapper
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:37:49 PM
Hello. If you don't already know it, may is national mental health awareness month and borderline personality disorder month.
I am not afraid or ashamed to say that I am OCD, have Complex PTSD, am Bipolar, and have Borderline Personality Disorder.
It has been a struggle but one I will continue to fight everyday. I have gone from trying suicide 12 years ago to getting world class treatment at McLean Hospital, right outside of Boston, working full time, being an active member of NAMI (am now the Public Policy Coordinator), I work full time and am going to Simmons College full time to get my Masters in Social Work with a minor in Communications and Public Policy. On top of that I have done advocacy for the NAMI at the State House in Boston and yesterday I went to a NAMI event and met Glenn Close. Her family struggles with Mental Illness and she shared her story. It was an amazing experience.
I am not looking for sympathy and never will. I just want people to know there is hope and to never give up. There is so much help, there are resources, and so many people that will help...just never give up.
I am very open about this (obviously!) so please feel free to ask questions.
And remember what Walt Disney once said: "if you can dream it, you can do it!"
Glenn Close and I


*If you can dream it, you can do it*
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Really Red
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:40:04 PM
One giant LIKE for you!

Thanks for sharing and continued good mental health to you!!!


Andrea

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Comeonalready
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:40:14 PM
Wow, thank you for being so open with this topic. That truly is an overwhelming list of diagnosises. Were they diagnosed over the course of many years? Was it a matter of medication/treatment for one not solving your issues and them moving on and finding another underlying cause?

I don't mean to be rude, I just truly haven't ever met anyone who had that many different mental health diagnosises. I'm curious how they played out from when you had no diagnosis to today, where you have quite a handful.

beachgurl
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:40:57 PM




batya
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:42:51 PM
Wow. It takes a lot of courage to share this and to try to help others. I am so happy for your improvement and hope it only gets better for you but so sorry you've been handed this burden. TFS.


OK. Newbie. This is how it works. If your post consists of 80% sanity, 10% stupidity and 10% all kinds of crazy, we immediately focus on the 20% b/c it discredits the 80%.




froggy one
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:45:07 PM
I am glad to see that this is being talked about more openly. I have been treated for depression. I also have issues with anxiety. I commend you on all that you have accomplished.


Karen

smbirth
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:45:50 PM
Kudos to you for your bravery to fight the battle and not be ashamed. Mental illness still causes such stigma and embarrassment for the affected.

NAMI is a great organization. I have a good friend who has suffered with bipolar disorder the majority of her life. NAMI and the support of a wonderful husband have helped her blossom into her full potential.

Thank you for bringing this issue to the forefront of the Peas discussions!

bostonscrapper
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:47:49 PM
Comeonalready: Yes, they were diagnosed over 5 years. I got diagnosed because I went into a Manic Episode and when I was crashing, I crashed hard and landed in the hospital where I was diagnosed. Then, I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) within a year. I was in denial about this for 10, yes 10 years. It was not until last January that I could admit that it was ruining my life. That is when I found McLean Hospital. The OCD routines developed as a sense of having some kind of control in my life since everything felt so out of control all the time. The PTSD was just diagnosed within the last 2 years as I get flooded with emotional type flashbacks that can knock me to the ground.
I was on meds through all of this until last March when I left McLean. Through the use of Dialectal Behavioral Therapy, which is a miracle, I can control myself, my moods, actions, the way I deal with people, how I cope, etc and no longer need meds (at least right now).

I feel like all of this is just a part of my life and somewhat a blessing. I have understanding and empathy that others may not understand. It is now my time to go out and help others and that's what I feel I was put on this Earth to do. Whether I help one person or one hundred, I know that what I went through will be worth it.


*If you can dream it, you can do it*
-Walt Disney

scrappower
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:47:54 PM
I have severe anxiety disorder and OCD myself. I am also totally open about it and won't let anyone place the stupid stigma society thinks that people with mental illnesses should have. It is a disease like any other.



cropduster
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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:48:30 PM
Another . I feel the only way that we as a society will be able to address the mental health issues in this country is to be open and have input from those who suffer with mental health and their families and friends. Thank you for sharing your story and for turning what could be a tragedy into triumph.


cropduster

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Comeonalready
BucketHead

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Posted: 4/29/2013 8:55:51 PM

I was on meds through all of this until last March when I left McLean. Through the use of Dialectal Behavioral Therapy, which is a miracle, I can control myself, my moods, actions, the way I deal with people, how I cope, etc and no longer need meds (at least right now).


Again, not to be rude - I do not know anything about Dialectal Behavioral Therapy - can you tell us more?

The reason I ask is that I find it very unusual that you were on meds until March but no longer need them. My understanding, and this may be outdated, is that it is an especially common thing for those with Bipolar disorder to go off their meds saying they don't need them anymore. Then they spiral down again when off the meds.

Did your doctors suggest you go off the meds or were you the one that made the decision?

sagehelena
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:00:49 PM
I am glad you were able to get help. I have to deal with someone with BPD on a regular basis, and it is a total nightmare. She refuses to do anything about it though, or help herself in any way, instead forcing everyone else to be affected by her bad choices. It sounds like DBT made a difference for you, I wish this person would look into it herself.


*Amanda*

bostonscrapper
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:08:02 PM
Comeonalready-so the decision about meds was made based on me and my dr. and, in all honesty, i have never felt better. i am awake, alert, i am not gaining any weight (i am actually losing), i don't feel like i have a hangover every morning, and the list could go on and on.
dialectal behavioral therapy (also known as dbt) was created by marsha linehan. she recently came out saying she had bpd and she created this therapy to help others. it is very complex, but once you get to know the basics, you can build off that. It is based on 4 steps: 1. mindfulness, 2. interpersonal effectiveness, 3. emotion regulation and 4. distress tolerance.
here is a link that describes it in detail:
dbt
the best part is using the diary card. it keeps track of your emotions and behaviors which is a great way to see how certain things effect you. i do the diary card 3 times a day (still, it's been over a year), and i practice a new skill everytime i do it.


*If you can dream it, you can do it*
-Walt Disney

bostonscrapper
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:09:48 PM
this is the best video out there. it describes bpd to a t.
bpd video


*If you can dream it, you can do it*
-Walt Disney

benem
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:11:01 PM
Wonderful post and a great photo!

As you can see on another thread on the 1sf page the works is still full of people who think that we all have "dark times" and some people can handle it while others just "can't". It names me angry.

Good for you and your advocacy.


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bostonscrapper
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:11:11 PM
and thank you so much everyone! it means so much to have people that understand and that support me. it's people like you who make a difference!


*If you can dream it, you can do it*
-Walt Disney

Ginger_64
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:14:24 PM
I love a good uplifting story. Thanks for sharing!

I've heard Glenn talk about the mental illness in her family too and was very moved. That's great that she's involved and that you got to meet here.

2peafaithful
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:14:33 PM

carolgscrapper
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:19:01 PM
You are brave and awesome and kick ass and a survivor...all rolled into one!!!


Like!!!!!!!!!


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PaperTulip
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:22:54 PM
Another one with BPD. I used to live in a state that I call the black hole of mental health. I've been 'cured' by more than 5 doctors since I was 16. I'm now 27 and finally stable. BPD makes it hard to find doctors who will treat you. Most put you in the 'too hard' basket. One where I live now told me I was a hypo.

jodster70
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:25:46 PM
Kudos to you!!!! Wonderful pic with Glenn Close.

My late brother had schizophrenia and I also have had other family members with severe mental illness, so I have a special place in my heart for this cause. It was SO hard to get my brother help!

I am so glad you have found something that works for you, and that you have the courage to be open about it. As Scrappower said, mental illness should not have a stigma attached, because it strikes people just like other illnesses do.


**Jody**

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ramblin72
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:27:17 PM

I don't mean to be rude, I just truly haven't ever met anyone who had that many different mental health diagnosises. I'm curious how they played out from when you had no diagnosis to today, where you have quite a handful.


often, disorders have a comorbidity with other disorders and it may come about genetically or as a consequence of life events

julieberg
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:44:09 PM


Yes, out society needs to be more open about mental illness. I was just at a brunch yesterday to support a Suicide support group in honor of my dh's cousin. I also have a nephew recently diagnosed as bi-polar and he is struggling with staying on his meds, etc.

It needs to be talked about more and I applaud your honestly.

rosiekat
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:46:12 PM
There's no reason to be ashamed of any medical condition.


Jen


Knotlazy
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Posted: 4/29/2013 9:52:12 PM
Thank you for sharing your story. As someone who has no experience with mental illness, I appreciate your info. I learned something today. I'm glad you found what works for you!

camanddanismom
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Posted: 4/29/2013 10:21:12 PM
Thanks for sharing your story! It sounds like you have overcome a great deal and I love that you are advocating for others. I have a sister who is struggling with a bibolar diagnosis...we seem to take one step forward and 3 back. I also have a niece who recently spent time at Maclean. Thank you for all you do.


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Posted: 4/29/2013 10:27:53 PM
How do you all find the Dr.s that are effective. How do you get help. I used to read a blog by one of our own peas, I think it was called "more than words" it has since been made private, but she had two daughters out of the state from where she lived in order to get them some help.


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needmysanity
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Posted: 4/29/2013 10:56:22 PM
Your story is quite amazing...thank you for sharing it with us. I personally don't think Mental Illness is talked about enough. I wish there were more organizations and help for people - its so needed in this country.

My oldest had (has) PTSD and trying to find help for him was so hard. Fortunatly we found a great therapist who was able to get him through the worst parts of it. I still see the PTSD come up on occassions but he has learned how to manage those trigger points.



~Steph~

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IleneScraps
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Posted: 4/29/2013 10:57:28 PM
Good for you!!



Zella
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Posted: 4/30/2013 1:06:29 AM
As a counterpoint to the OP, I have a mild form of bipolar disorder, and I don't imagine I'll ever be medication free. I didn't realize how much I needed a mood stabilizer until I was on one for a while. It's made a huge difference for me.

OP, I'm glad you're doing so well. It really is up to those of us with mental illness to fight to finally banish the stigma. I can't control my brain chemistry, and I shouldn't have to be ashamed of that.


Trying to live each day for itself


ScrapsontheRocks
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Posted: 4/30/2013 2:31:02 AM
Hello there! I salute you as a brave person and a true advocate for those with Mental Illness/es. The lovely pic of you with Glenn Close was the cherry on top. Go well- Jennifer

Nicole in TX
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Posted: 4/30/2013 5:01:27 AM
Awesome story and photo! Best wishes to you.



FLCindy
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Posted: 4/30/2013 6:28:04 AM
Thank you for sharing your story. You've done and continue to do some intense work for yourself and for others. I admire your tenacity to survive and thrive.


Cheers from Southeast Sunny Florida!
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CountryHam
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Posted: 4/30/2013 6:32:48 AM
Awesome achievements.

Question? Why does Borderline Personality Disorder get it's
own special recognition?


may is national mental health awareness month and borderline personality disorder month.


Isn't it already covered under "mental health"? Just wondering why that particular mental health issue is being keynoted.



PeaCeaRyder
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Posted: 4/30/2013 7:43:47 AM
Thank you for sharing. About two years ago, I went through a very difficult time and was admitted to the hospital, diagnosed with psychosis with depression. I don't understand the differences in all the various mental disorders; but I do know that it was one of the most, if not the most, frightening experience of my life. All I can say is, thank God for friends and family who knew I needed help and stood by me. I don't know what I would have done without them.

I am on a daily medication that I sometimes forget to take (like this morning). But I will take it as soon as I get home as I have a fear of going without it. I, too, hope that mental illnesses gain the attention and resources that we need to combat this terrible illness. No one should have to go through it.

Kudos to you for your bravery and all that you do!



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Kelpea
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Posted: 4/30/2013 8:07:25 AM
TFS your story. We've also dealt with much in our family, and it's always good to hear other success stories of those can manage their lives with any kind of mental disorder.


I am also totally open about it and won't let anyone place the stupid stigma society thinks that people with mental illnesses should have.


Same, which is why I "came out" here about my son two years ago. Ignorance of mental issues is disturbing to me especially in view of the fact that one out of every four people have some sort of mental issue. The last "famous" person to speak about it openly was Rosaylnn Carter, so you can see we are WAY overdue with some serious, frank discussions to further understanding, knowledge and empathy of those who suffer.

My son is now 13; thing are looking gteat, but we live waiting for the other shoe to drop. Meds are evaluated every three months via his psychiatrist. He has a therapist on call for when he feels overwhelmed. But on the flip side, he's made honor roll since grade school to now. He made the men's select chorus for next year. He's a great athlete. So there's all that.

Hopefully this thread the OP was kind enough to post will continue to inspire others to reach out; I still get queries even now from Peas who are looking for the "BDTD" advice.

Thanks again for sharing, OP.



ben4192
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Posted: 4/30/2013 8:11:41 AM
I second Bra Genie. I live in Florida and when I go home to Louisiana, I often stop there. They have a wide selection and for the first time I'm able to buy cute bras in cute colors. I'm also a GG and have never had a problem leaving the store with one or two--often three or four different bras. They also have free shipping! If you buy from them you need to try the Niki Biki camis. They are one size fits all and they kinda suck you in so you don't jiggle. AMAZING!

ben4192
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Posted: 4/30/2013 8:14:43 AM
I second Bra Genie. I live in Florida and when I go home to Louisiana, I often stop there. They have a wide selection and for the first time I'm able to buy cute bras in cute colors. I'm also a GG and have never had a problem leaving the store with one or two--often three or four different bras. They also have free shipping! If you buy from them you need to try the Niki Biki camis. They are one size fits all and they kinda suck you in so you don't jiggle. AMAZING!

lindywholoveskids
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Posted: 4/30/2013 8:27:01 AM
thanks for sharing your journey.
we have a close family member who has Bipolar disorder, and a friend with a pretty severe case.
You are inspiring!

WingNut
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Posted: 4/30/2013 8:44:37 AM


I think the more we talk about how we are effected by mental illness, the less stigma will be attached. Keep up the great work!


Joy


siameseplease
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Posted: 4/30/2013 8:58:35 AM
Thanks so much for sharing your story. Your accomplishments, perseverance, determination and openness are truly admirable. I'm grateful that there are people like you who are willing to educate. I wish more people had an open mind about mental illness. I know someone who is bipolar and her father refuses to believe it's a disease like any physical one. He says she should be "strong-minded enough to snap out of it." Her twin also has symptoms but refuses to get treatment, and I think their father is a big reason behind that. It's so sad! So, again, thanks for all that you do to educate. You're awesome.


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stampfox
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Posted: 4/30/2013 9:01:46 AM
You go girl.
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Idahopea
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Posted: 4/30/2013 9:37:33 AM
Thank you for posting about this. I have a friend who also struggles with mental illnesses and medications/therapy don't seem to be helping her very much although it is hard to know how much harder things would be without them. This has been a long time struggle for her with many different attempts at treatments/medications/therapy. I struggle with doing too much for her vs helping her enough to make her life better. She has OCD (and other illnesses) and there are many things that she cannot do because of germs/contamination fears. For example, if I help her by taking out the trash or scrubbing the toilet will it make it harder for her to do those things herself? This is complicated by other issues as well but I guess my question is what are the best ways that friends can help someone who struggles with mental illnesses? I know many friends have left her life over the years because she is often needy/depressed/difficult. I say that not to criticize her because I feel she does the best she can and really doesn't want to be like this, but I know I will have to maintain a certain line in order to be able to continue to help her as much as I can. Any thoughts on what would be helpful other than being a friend and encouraging her?

becooper
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Posted: 4/30/2013 9:48:11 AM
My sister has mental health issues. I have taken her to the hospital 2 times and she has been admitted a total of 4 times. The last time when I visited her I told her she has to stay on her medication. She would always say people would talk about her and think differently of her if they found out she took medication! I told her that when you don't take your meds is when everyone knows and talks about you. She has been hospital free for 8 years! Of course she takes her meds regularly. Thanks for sharing your story.


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bostonscrapper
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Posted: 4/30/2013 11:08:53 AM
Thank you everyone! I will respond and answer questions when I get home from work!


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-Walt Disney
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