Mental Illness Mouse

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Disclaimer: we are not medical professionals- we cannot give you a diagnosis or medication advice. Please speak to a health professional for this. If you are in crisis please contact one of the hotlines on our page.

Asker Anonymous Asks:
My family thinks I stopped self harming years ago, but I never did. I've tried everything I can to stop, tried every one of those "what to do when you feel like cutting" tricks and I still can't stop. I'm terrified of anyone knowing.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

TW: Self harm

Hi Anon,

It’s wonderful that you’ve tried to work through things on your own, but now it is vital that you ask for help. There is no shame in admitting that you need guidance. That’s what your family—and friends—are there for!

Here are some tips to use when opening up to them:

How to tell someone about your mental health & interactions with others

And some tips to try (again) for yourself:

Self Injury

And while friends and family can be an amazing support, the will to stop cutting comes entirely from you. This is something that you will need to decide on your own, but I am confident that, when you are ready, you will make the healthy choice.

Best,

Lena

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Me and my mum are getting our of an abusive situation finally but I'm really worried because when I stopped being bullied my brain way overcompensated and I ended up with depression and severe anxiety and I'm terrified it'll happen again.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

TW: Abuse

Hi Anon,

As someone who was recently in your situation, I’ll be perfectly honest with you: it will happen again. Leaving an abusive situation is only the first step on the long road to recovery. You have experienced trauma, and your brain will need a lot of time to heal. Relapsing is a huge part of recovery. Everyone relapses. It’s to be expected, but each time it happens, you get a little bit better about combating it, anticipating it, and coping with it.

It’s important now that you talk to your mom about how you are feelings. Being physically away from an abusive person is the best thing to do, but now you need to start processing what has happened to the both of you. If therapy is an option for the two of you, I would strongly recommend that you go for it. Working through things together will make the process easier. Keep being there for each other.

Here are some tips from our Helpful Resources page to get you started:

Abuse

Best,

Lena

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Hi I am in a situation where it would be literally impossible for me to try and get help from a professional or tell anyone at all in my life about how I feel but I am extremely extremely suicidal and I am doing very badly in school and that makes me even more suicidal and makes me want to start cutting again and I don't know what to do at all I just can't stop thinking about dying and how much I hate myself I know there isn't really any solution I guess I am just venting sorry for this.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

TW: Suicidal ideation, Self harm

Hi Anon,

Please don’t feel bad for asking for help. That’s what we are here for! Here are some tips we’ve compiled from our Helpful Resources page:

Suicide Prevention
  • Help Guide A site containing articles to help understand, help numbers,  “tool kits”, and self help. 
  • Mental Help A site that has basic information, resources, articles, and a list of books that might be helpful.
  • Volunteers of America Learn information about suicide, understanding suicide, and handling suicidal threats.
  • Feeling Suicidal? Please take a moment to read this post on how to cope with suicidal thoughts. 
  • Want to help someone who is feeling suicidal? This post on suicide prevention might help. 
  • The international association for suicide prevention is dedicated to preventing suicidal behavior and alleviating it’s effects. It also has links to forums. 

Self Injury

How to tell someone about your mental health & interactions with others

Here is what I found on psychcentral.com:

One of the biggest reasons people don’t seek therapy is money. People look at a therapist’s hourly rates — which might range from $100 to $250 — and immediately assume they can’t afford professional help. So they stop there.

But you do have various helpful options. Below, clinicians share, in no particular order, what you can do if you can’t afford treatment.

1. Check with your insurance.

“If you have insurance, ask your insurance plan to give you a list of providers who are either in your geographic area or who specialize in the issue you are seeking help with,” said Roberto Olivardia, Ph.D, a clinical psychologist and clinical instructor in the department of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. You might only have to pay a small co-pay, he said.

However, even if your insurance doesn’t cover therapy, get the details on what they do cover, said Julie A. Fast, a coach and author of Get It Done When You’re Depressed. For instance, your policy might still include the words “social worker,” she said.

2. Try a training clinic.

Training clinics offer clients a sliding scale. They’re typically located in universities where graduate students prepare to become clinical or counseling psychologists, said Kevin L. Chapman, Ph.D, a psychologist and associate professor in clinical psychology at theUniversity of Louisville. There, he said, students are “trained and supervised by licensed psychologists who typically have years of experience with specific mental health conditions.”

3. Try a community mental health center.

“Community mental health centers provide free or low-cost therapy options and services covered by Medicaid insurance,” said Julie Hanks, LCSW, a therapist and blogger at Psych Central. To find a center, search using Google or look at your state government website for the Department of Human Services, she said.

4. Read self-help books.

“Books are my first recommendation,” Fast said. Along with her book,Get It Done When You’re Depressed, she also suggested “the rather esoteric The Four Agreements for personal development [and] The Idiot’s Guide to Controlling Anxiety.”

You also can contact a local therapist for book recommendations for your specific concern, Olivardia said. “It can help narrow down the options and allow you to focus on quality resources,” he said.

5. Attend support groups. 

Support groups typically are free or at least more affordable than individual therapy. They may be run by mental health professionals or peers. Always ask a therapist if they also offer lower-cost group sessions, Fast said. (“Groups can be a lot less expensive if they accept cash,” she said.)

She suggested attending moderated support groups. “I always stress that groups that are run by the people in the group rarely work. It should be a structured system where a dispassionate person runs things. Otherwise it can just be a complaining session,” Fast said.

The great thing about groups is meeting other people who are struggling with similar issues, which can create “a safe, validating space,” Olivardia said.

Learn more about support groups in your area by visiting NAMI and the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance. Also, consider organizations such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA).

Consider, too, online support groups, such as one of the 180+mental health support groups here at Psych Central.

6. Ask about discounted rates.

“Cash is often more lucrative than going through the whole paperwork insurance thing,” Fast said. As such, some therapists might offer discounts. For instance, Fast’s therapist typically charges $200 an hour, but she worked with Fast for $50 an hour for a year.

Fast suggested asking clinicians the following questions: “If I don’t have insurance, do you have a cash policy?” Or, “I’m looking for a therapist but am on limited funds. Do you have any discount programs or a group available?” If they don’t, they might be able to refer you to a practitioner who does, she said.

7. Re-evaluate your expenses.

“There are some situations where ‘can’t afford’ is really about priorities,” Hanks said. Consider if you can reorganize your budget to accommodate therapy.

“I’ve worked with clients who ‘can’t afford’ my services but highly value therapy and choose to go without other things because they “can’t afford” not to be in therapy,” she said.

8. Check out podcasts and videos.

Fast also recommended self-help podcasts and videos, such as TED talks on YouTube. “They are very inspirational and have good advice,” she said. When searching for podcasts on iTunes, consider terms such as therapy or personal growth, she said. “I know this is not like seeing a therapist, but I believe that self growth requires personal time as well. It doesn’t all have to be about psychology either,” she said.

9. Visit websites for your particular concern.

“When an individual is privy to their mental health needs — [such as] ‘I’m having panic attacks’ or ‘I think I have OCD’ — landing on an association’s website can be ideal,” Chapman said.

For instance, he said, if you’re struggling with anxiety, you can find valuable resources at the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive TherapiesAnxiety and Depression Association of America and theInternational OCD Foundation.

There is also a wealth of information at Psych Central about self-help techniques, treatments, and books to check out. You can start by looking-up your mental health condition here.

10. Consult your congregation.

“If you belong to a religious congregation, talk to your preacher, pastor, or priest about your need and see if your church offers therapy services or is willing to help pay for therapy,” Hanks said.

11. Consider body therapy.

“Don’t forget body therapy… including chiropractic and massage,” Fast said. Schools usually charge small fees for services given by their students, she said.

As Olivardia said, “Nothing is more important than your physical and mental health.” If self-help resources and groups aren’t working, consider the price of not seeking professional help – because that might be steeper.

“Consider that there are costs for not getting treatment such as lost wages for missing work, strain on family relationships, and quality and length of your life,” Hanks said.

Asker Anonymous Asks:
What's the best way to bring up suicidal feelings to your family? I think they know that I have suicidal feelings, but they've been getting more and more prominent. I also hate the idea of telling them since they snooped through my stuff last time they thought I was a risk.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

TW: Suicidal ideation

Hi Anon,

Here are some tips from our Helpful Resources page about opening up about your feelings & suicide prevention:

How to tell someone about your mental health & interactions with others

Suicide Prevention
  • Help Guide A site containing articles to help understand, help numbers,  “tool kits”, and self help. 
  • Mental Help A site that has basic information, resources, articles, and a list of books that might be helpful.
  • Volunteers of America Learn information about suicide, understanding suicide, and handling suicidal threats.
  • Feeling Suicidal? Please take a moment to read this post on how to cope with suicidal thoughts. 
  • Want to help someone who is feeling suicidal? This post on suicide prevention might help. 
  • The international association for suicide prevention is dedicated to preventing suicidal behavior and alleviating it’s effects. It also has links to forums. 

There really isn’t a “good” way to tell your loved ones about your suicidal ideation, but it is important that you do. They will be concerned and will want to help you, so it is important to be honest with them. They probably snooped last time because they were worried about you and scared that you would do something terrible. The more open and honest you are with them, the less they’ll feel the need to snoop. They just want to keep you safe and happy.

Best,

Lena

Asker Anonymous Asks:
I feel like nothing else really matters in life anymore. I just recently lost a few people in life who were the only reasons I stayed alive. Ive gone back to self harm and taking random medicine to forget things. I just don't want to be here anymore.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

TW: Self-harm, Suicidal ideation, Drugs

Hi Anon,
I am so sorry you are feeling this way. Right now, the best course of action for you is to seek the help of a friend, family member, loved one, and/or therapist whom you trust and talk to them about how you are feeling. If you do not feel comfortable doing this, please call emergency services or a local suicide hotline in your area for help. Reaching out is a good first step and getting help with these feelings will benefit you in the long run. 
In the meantime, here are some tips from our Helpful Resources page that might help:

Self Injury

Suicide Prevention
  • Help Guide A site containing articles to help understand, help numbers,  “tool kits”, and self help. 
  • Mental Help A site that has basic information, resources, articles, and a list of books that might be helpful.
  • Volunteers of America Learn information about suicide, understanding suicide, and handling suicidal threats.
  • Feeling Suicidal? Please take a moment to read this post on how to cope with suicidal thoughts. 
  • Want to help someone who is feeling suicidal? This post on suicide prevention might help. 
  • The international association for suicide prevention is dedicated to preventing suicidal behavior and alleviating it’s effects. It also has links to forums. 
Addictions
  • Help Guide A site containing articles to help understand, help numbers,  “tool kits”, and self help. 
  • Mental Support Community A forum to talk about addictions and impulse problems and how it affects your life. 
  • Mental Help A site that has basic information, resources, articles, and a list of books that might be helpful. 
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Treatment Facility Locator or mental health and substance abuse treatment programs and resources in the USA. 
  • The addiction help center has an extensive range information and resources about different types of addictions including food addictions, work addictions, sex addictions, internet addictions, shopping addictions, gambling addiction and self harm addiction. 
All the Best,
Lena
Asker Anonymous Asks:
i feel like I have to stay alive for my little sisters to have someone to take their anger out on. I love my family very much and I couldn't leave them with no one to yell at. I don't think I can last any longer though. Im a waste of money and time.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

TW: Suicidal ideation, Abuse

Hi Anon,

It’s great that you want to be there for your family, but I think your reasoning is extremely unhealthy. You are not your family’s metaphorical punching bag. You’re a human being with thoughts, ideas, and feelings that should be listened to and respected. You don’t have to take their abuse. It’s not your duty, and you don’t have to listen to it or put up with it. It’s impossible for a human being to be a waste of money or time because each life is valuable and unique. You owe it to yourself to use your money and your time to begin the healing process. You need to find your own reasons to live that exist independently from your family’s selfish behaviors. Life has so much to offer you, and you have so much to offer life and those around you.

Coping can be extremely difficult, so I would suggest seeking the help of a friend, family member, loved one, and/or therapist so you can discuss with them what you are thinking and feeling. If you do not want to speak with someone you know, please call emergency service or a local suicide hotline in your area for help. Reaching out to someone is a step in the right direction and will benefit you in the long run. We’ll be here if you need us.
All the Best,
Lena
Asker Anonymous Asks:
today at school i heard a mother talking to her 11yr old daughter over the phone, shouting "you better get your fucking ass over here" in a really aggressive tone. i'm really worried and i hope the daughter is alright. do you think i could do anything/could've done anything? i don't know the daughter.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

Hi Anon,

Your heart is in the right place, but I don’t think there is anything—necessarily—to worry about. I, personally, have done obnoxious and rude things to my Mom that have prompted some not so wonderful responses from her. And sometimes I definitely deserved it. All parents get ticked at their kids and say harsh things they don’t mean. Since it was a parent and child you don’t know, there’s isn’t/wasn’t anything you could do. I wouldn’t worry about this.

Best,

Lena

Asker Anonymous Asks:
i recently opened up to a friend about my struggles with anxiety and depression. he was really kind and receptive but i was wondering if you had any posts or resources i could show him to maybe help him understand a bit better? like maybe that are targeted towards friends/family of someone with a mental illness?
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

hi anon, 

I’m so proud of you for reaching out to a friend and opening up about your struggles. That is HUGE!!!

We actually have a couple links on our resource page that you may find helpful.this link is about explaining your mental illness to someone. This page is a link about helping a friend with mental illness. This is similar to the last one but is specially written about anxiety (although I feel it is applicable to a lot of things)

Hopefully you can find these helpful!

-Lina

Asker Anonymous Asks:
I've been struggling with depression for 6 years but I got good at suppressing it until this year when it became debilitating and I barely went to classes and almost flunked out of college. I started to go to counseling on campus and it got better and I felt good but now I feel like I'm going back into a depressive state and I'm not sure what to do. I guess I'm just feeling really discouraged and wondering what the point of all this is... advice on how to keep going with recovery?
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

hi anon,

This is a really hard and common struggle that a lot of people deal with. Although suppressing things and pretending they dont exist is easier and may feel like the safer option, dealing with things and letting yourself feel things is going to be what leads to the most healing. It’s a huge and scary step to take and I’m so proud of you for doing that. It’s great that you went to counseling on campus! I would encourage you to continue to seek out therapy, whether it’s at school or if its outside help. Having a therapist to process and talk about things with can be helpful to get through this tough time. I would also encourage you to find things to do each day that make you feel happy or accomplished; things that make you want to continue living and fighting. Obviously this can be anything and varies from person to person, so I would encourage you to seek out things that you enjoy doing. Setting time aside to do these things can be effective to treat depression on a day to day basis.

Lastly, try to remember that this will pass and things will get better. You will have days, or periods that will be harder than others, but there will also be good times too. Try to focus on appreciating and being aware of the good things in your life, and live the life that you want to live and that will make you happy.This is a temporary struggle and you are strong enough to get through this. We believe in you here at MIM and there are so many people in your life that love and care about you and want to see you get better.

-Lina

Asker galvdriels Asks:
Hello! Just wanted to say that the national suicide lifeline has a chat line in case people can't talk on the phone for whatever reason. It's on their website. And many crisis centers across America have the same program, I know the Iowa city one does.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:
Asker Anonymous Asks:
For the Effexor anonymous, I just wanted to say that a pharmacist can be a good person to talk to as well regarding medication issues. Good luck with the withdrawal -- I've been there too with various meds.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

Good advice! Thanks!

-Liz

comealongraggedypond:

instead of “perfection is boring” we should be saying “perfection is an unattainable and unrealistic standard”

(via katthegrungefairy)

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Hi, I've had severe depression for several years now, but I have a friend who also does. And shes always venting to me, but doesn't seem to like it when I do. It's worst when she says she's going to kill herself and I'm left trying to talk her out of it when I can hardly keep myself together. I don't know how to help her and im getting to the point where I just wanna say screw it, and join her. I feel like a horrible person and friend.
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

TW: Suicidal ideation

Hi Anon,

A few of my friends also have depression, and we were in a similar situation not too long ago. We sat down and decided that we would have a “safe word” to use if we didn’t feel like talking about or hearing about feelings that day. When someone invoked the word, we we would turn the topic to other things—books, movies, shows, school, work, etc.—anything to distract from the bad feelings, but still let each other know that we are there for them. You can use the word as a listener or a speaker. We found it really helps us keep communicating without worrying each other.

If either of you are experiencing feelings and thoughts beyond depression—like suicidal ideation—then that is time for some more serious help. Help that neither of you are truly qualified or capable of giving each other at the moment. If you are worried for your own or your friend’s safety, please tell them to contact emergency services or contact them for your friend. You can be there for each other without draining each other completely.

Best,

Lena

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Alright, not sure if this could be helped on this blog but in the past half a year, I broke up with m boyfriend and haven't gotten back into a relationship. But recently I tried talking to him because I've always been worried for his health because of his habits and now he's been drinking majority of the time and he has told me it's because of me and I already feel really guilty because I still love him and all and it hurts me to see such a wonderful person like this? What do I do?
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

TW: Alcohol, Abuse

Hi Anon,

Stay away from him. He is using manipulative tactics to hold you in an abusive relationship. He’s blaming his drinking on you, and that is beyond disgusting. He’s bad news, and you deserve so much more than that. He’ll get help for himself if he genuinely wants to get it.

Best,

Lena

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Hi, I don't know if any of you have experience with effexor, but I've been on 150 mg of it for probably around a year and the last few weeks I've been tapering off by intervals of 37.5 mg capsules, as per my psych's instructions. I'm finally off it completely but the withdrawal effects are unbearable. I'm easily angered, depressed, and I feel constantly tired and like everything is too bright and loud. Is there any way to quicken this process or at least make it easier to bear? Thank you x
mentalillnessmouse mentalillnessmouse Said:

Hi Anon,

As we are not doctors, we cannot answer this question for you. Please ask your prescribing physician these same questions.

Best,

Lena