Four Tips For Avoiding Unnecessary Stress In Life —

Stress is a major thorn in the side for many people. While it is natural and beneficial in certain scenarios, chronic stress is very unhealthy. It can have negative effects on your physical and mental health. If you are regularly hampered by stress and anxiety, it’s important to address it. Failing to acknowledge continuous stress […]

Four Tips For Avoiding Unnecessary Stress In Life —

Wars, Lies, and Knives —Guest Blogger Victory after Abuse

They say that abuse is a cycle, and I do not disagree. I want to say this loud enough so that the people in the back can hear me. ‘Domestic Violence ‘ is a war that is being handed from generation to generation. Fathers are teaching sons to dominate, control, and terrorize. That there will […]

Wars, Lies, and Knives — Victory after Abuse

Boxed In — A Patient Voice

What if I am not as resilient as people say? What if I am not as mindful as people think I am? With a lot of therapy and personal awareness, I find myself asking these questions. Throughout the last few months, my exploration has led me to two conclusions. The first that uncertainty and not […]

Boxed In — A Patient Voice

4 Days- Countdown to Re-entry — Army of Angels: Part 2

The countdown to return to work continues. I am a public school teacher in Middle Tennessee. Our state is quickly moving up the worldometer COVID-19 tracker. Over the course of about a week, our state moved from 17th to 14th. All of the counties in our state had to submit a “continuous learning plan” this […]

4 Days- Countdown to Re-entry — Army of Angels: Part 2

LGBTQ college students more likely to develop eating disorders, University research says

1/28/2020, 10:48PM

University of Minnesota research looked into disparities between heterosexual, cisgender and LGBTQ college students.

By HANA IKRAMUDDIN

A new University of Minnesota study found that LGBTQ college students are more likely to develop eating disorders than their heterosexual and cisgender peers.

The study, which used data from the College Student Health Survey, aimed at finding the existing disparities between the rates of eating disorders in LGBTQ and non-LGBTQ students. The researchers also measured the disorder’s impact on academic achievement and success.

Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any psychiatric illness, said Emily Pisetsky, the lead researcher and an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. This makes eating disorders an important topic to delve into, especially as it relates to minority groups, she said. 

“We know that early intervention is associated with better outcomes,” Pisetsky said. “Being able to identify folks who are high risk will allow us to have more targeted intervention and prevention efforts.”

According to the study, cisgender women, transgender and gender-nonconforming students reported higher rates of eating disorder diagnoses than cisgender men.  

In comparison to their heterosexual peers, lesbian, gay and bisexual students also had a higher likelihood of having these disorders. Within these identities, bisexual students and students who were “unsure” of their sexual identity had the highest rates.

“[Bisexuality] is not a group that you hear as much about, and we think that may be part of the stigma,” Pisetsky said. “It’s something that can often be sort of minimized and not feel … quite like they fit in with the queer community or quite like they fit in with the straight community.”  

In addition, bisexual students were more at risk of having eating disorders impact their academic performance and achievement.

“The cognitive burden of navigating your identity development [takes] up a lot of mental space, which may take up more space than the off-the-wall college student, where you have a lot going on already,” said Melissa Simone, a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences.

The fact that a sexual identity can put some at a higher risk of eating disorders and can impact academic success is something that needs to be looked into further, said Autumn Askew, who works at the Minnesota Center for Eating Disorder Research and contributed to the study.

“We are actively educating all of our clinicians here to recognize that eating disorders come in all shapes, sizes, backgrounds, colors, everything,” said Jennifer Krzmarzick, who is on the eating disorder team at Boynton Health.  

For those worried about a friend’s mental health or eating patterns, Krzmarzick recommended a visit to Boynton or The National Eating Disorder Association website.


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Ten Ways to Live Life Better With Chronic Illness — Guest Blogger Fighting With Fibro

Life certainly hasn’t turned out the way I intended, to say the least. And in the beginning, when I was sickest, I was angry and full of pain and disappointment over getting sick. I had a difficult time seeing through the haze of loss and resentment to realize that I still had choices left in […]

via Ten Ways to Live Life Better With Chronic Illness — Fighting With Fibro

The Upside to Conflicts in Middle School

Posted on by Free Spirit Publishing

I’m sitting at a busy lunch table full of sixth graders. There is energy you can’t put your finger on and a deafening hum that continues from the first lunch all the way to the last. All 150 students are engaged in the same activity at the same time: communicating. With each word expressed in this lunchroom, lessons are being learned that will be filed away and used the next time there is a similar social situation. Sound confusing and overwhelming to keep up with? Just ask one of these sixth graders, and they will tell you that it absolutely is!

Teachers in middle school will often comment that being with their students from one day to another is like playing tug-of-war. For every day a student makes progress, the next day he or she might fall behind, have…

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Instagram

Hey there everyone!

Another change has happened within the last few weeks… I post a positive message (image) to my Instagram account every day! It’s typically a message that I will take with me through my day and I hope that seeing it helps others during their day. Check it out here!

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Meditate It Away

Originally posted on Journey Into A on March 13, 2018.

I was having a really rough day just over a month ago and I asked my best friend for some help. She had a bunch of positive affirmations and I needed some. She also told me about a meditation app. That meditation app has been my daily helper ever since I downloaded it!

The app is called Simple Habit. There are 5/10/15 minute meditations available with a ton of topics! I do it everyday before I leave the house. It clears out all my anxiety and any depression I may be feeling. It’s got options for if you’re having a rough day or starting something new or just going to start your day, etc.

Within the first few days, I noticed a change within my self and mind. From the teachings I’d meditated along with, I could just let my thoughts be instead of letting them get inside me and fester. I felt stronger just breathing and being at peace. I had much more appreciation for myself and my life.

Read the last 143 words here.

hi-atus

Hello everyone.

I apologize for going away, but I really needed time to myself. I’ve been going through a lot the last few months, mostly depression, and it’s been difficult to find motivation. When it came to writing here, all my thoughts were depressed and I didn’t want the path of my blog to steer towards only depressed posts.

Now, I’m in a transition where I don’t want to dwell on the past, but I also want to release some of the painful things that have happened in my life. Maybe that’ll help as a sort of cleanse. I’ll release them here in writing and maybe others with similar experiences will see they’re not alone and that one day, they can move on from them, as well.

Thank you for sticking with me!

Visit my blog here!

Survivors Blog Here Celebrates the Joining of Three New Contributors

Come celebrate with Survivors Blog Here, three new Contributors have joined the Community. Here’s a snap shot: Alexandra from Journey into A, Brian from Owning It Log and Mackenzie from Living with an Illness.

Stop in to say hello and read their current post, each have personal sites, no doubt you’ll want to follow them.

Alexandra’s at http://www.JourneyToA@wordpress.com. I hope to bring other’s along with me on my journey as well as help and inspire. A large theme is dealing with major depression and general anxiety disorder. I hope you enjoy and stay along for the journey!

Brian at http://www.owningitlog@wordpress.com is the core of strength and inspiration. He offers great wisdom and honestly from past experiences with an open heart. He is a Survivor to the core.

Mackenzie at http://www.LivingWithAnIllness@wordpress.com. Her profile shares a snap shot of her get-it-done-life-is-good-attitude. She was diagnosed with Auto-Immune Diseases Scleroderma, Celiac Disesase, Fibromyalgia, EDS and POTS.

I include this video for others to see the strength it takes everyday to survive. Surviving is not a one day task, they are life long challenges.

To Alexandra, Brian, Mackenzie WELCOME to Survivors Blog Here.  xo M

 

Making wrong right

My entire life has revolved around pretending I’m ok and as I grow and years go on I’m left in between the feeling of saying I’m not ok to others but never do I feel like they ok with my response ..SO MY FEELINGS OF MAKING THINGS RIGHT FOR OTHERS TO BE OK IS ONGOING. .

AFTER A LONG WEEKEND ALONE BATTLING ALONE TRYING TO DISTRACT MY FAMILY ARRIVED HOME INCLUDING MY OLDEST BOY,HOW EVER TRYING IT WAS I SURVIVED. THEN I STARTED DISOCIATING BADLY IT STARTED AT WORK ,PEOPLE TALKING TO ME BUT I COULD ONLY HEAR PARTS MY EARS WERE JUST NOT WORKING, I FELL TO PIECES TRYING TO EXPLAIN TO MY THERAPIST WHO CLEARLY SAID IT WAS BAD DISOCIATION I WAS EXPERIENCING. ..THEN CAME FAMILY DEMANDS AND OUTINGS WITH MORE DESREGULATION FOR ME..AND HOPING FINALLY IT WOULD ABATE WORK TOOK MORE FROM ME CAUSING HURENDOUS STRESS,BY THIS STAGE I’M FEELING LIKE MY PLAN TO END MY LIFE IS WORTH IT ..FINALLY MONDAY MY KEY WORKER DIDN’T TURN UP CAUSING THE ULTIMATE ANGER AND TURMOIL THAT IV ENDED SEEING HER,DON’T GET ME WRONG SHE IS LOVELY BUT AFTER TRYING TO EXPLAIN HOW IT FEELS  (ABANDONED, AND LIKE I DON’T MATTER AND HOW MUCH I’M BATTLING NOW ..AND WITH ALL GOING ON THIS WASNT THE RIGHT TIMING FOR ME,HER RESPONSE WAS WELL I COULDN’T MAKE IT SOMETHING ELSE URGENT CAME UP  ..AND LATER WE SPOKE AND HER TONE TOLD ME SHE WAS PISSED OFF I’D EVEN SAY HOW I FELT. .BUT SHE WOULD RESEDULE FOR NXT WEEK IF I WANTED TO” MY RESPONSE HONESTLY I CAN’T DO THIS SO NO I’D RATHER NOT SEE YOU.

Weather or not it was the right decision I don’t know, determining that now is out of my league. .but I’m sick of pretending I’m ok and when people hate my answer trying to make it better for them …then don’t ask me. .Fuck off and leave me I don’t need them!!

And I break down another wall

As the years have gone by I’m slowly getting better at breaking down walls, though at times it seems with great difficulty. 

My experiences of past relationships since a young child are proving my battles though I’m more aware than before it’s just past experiences! And I will stumble and fall but I keep rising 😰

Today I faced an obstacle with jecanique my post spoke of her mistake not putting the phone down after a voice mail message the message explained going to south island in February ,my instinct as usual just another leaving without saying goodbye what’s new:'(however this week has been that and a new key worker sigh another trust relationship is hard and brian and myself battle. ..my experience with my illness I process my trauma as almost now and almost every time I’m trying to make it right. .within my episode’s I strangely want sex to make things better and almost always cry afterwards as I feel like the child that was used…by no means is it true but I myself can’t comprehend it differently, same with jecanique holiday in south island it’s past experience of people leaving me..

Today I managed to tell her and overcome the feeling of dying rather than going back. ..I’ll survive they both lovely people till next week I know will be another hurdle! SIGH

Turmoil and confusion

Yesterday morning my sister received her results and they positive for cancer in the breast, she petrified and we were both filled with sadness as we spoke the possibilities through. ..today she sees oncology and Friday they operate. ..
It’s hard to hear that a loved one is battling it tore me apart, as we spoke of my mom’s journey with breast cancer to and last night she had her 3rd operation on her femur and hip replacement too our brothers tell us mom’s one eye is swollen shut ?not sure yet why …
Last night I kept busy I slept little and then communicated back and forth to south Africa with my brother’s around mom’s progress my mental illness feels agrivates by this change at present my sister isn’t telling any family other than me maybe next week she says I worry but hear to her concerns mom’s not well and dad’s away. ..

The feeling she been through enough in life why more I do not know but god sure had lots thrown at him last night from me:'(

Dreams of a better days

We arrived home late afternoon yesterday and the drive wasn’t quite as bad Hooray for that!Well driving we reflected on our weekend e cried listened to music ,it was hard all in all watching my sister in laws husband battle cancer its slowly popping up in all places and breathing is compressed by his tumor in the lungs that one can hear him breath miles away with much difficulty ..well we were there my in laws phoned they booked there tickets they arrive 20 July with there sister who we haven’t seen in more than 10 years ..excited to see the three monkey to they all under ten and one aged 3 .

So we booked our tickets well at his sister to fly well his parents are here to new Plymouth this is massive for me,but we all excited .This week is huge my mom went in for a third op related to her broken femur and hip replacement last night in south Africa  its hard to try encourage when she battles to .And today my sister will find out whether she has cancer in the lymph nobs as well ,one weeks ago they removed a tumor in the breast and then sent away for extensive testing today she finds out the results .Hubby i must say is very understanding of the emotions right now.

I took my usual meds the whole weekend to satisfy hubby but last night left them and this morning well hubby was searching for his medicine he came across my stock pile and woke me at 5 am with holly crap theirs about three months here for you how fucking long have you not taken Groan its only 4 weeks not thee months relax …i cant do this im only trying to please others and that hard enough ..I NEED TO KEEP REMINDING ME ITS ABOUT ME AND ME ONLY.

This mornings side effects of starting and stopping meds  is one hell of a headache its throbbing,but too a feeling of been isolated from the world i look out side and dream to walk patches by our sea side but the gripping fear some how arises and home i wish to stay rather were its safe ,quite ,and no one can touch me.

Coping with no meds

The long weekend has brought much anxiety we away from home visiting family. ..well driving here 5 hours from auckland city hubby thought best to bring meds subject up and how thoughtless I was not talking to my family before stopping meds ..

I get all that but like iv Said before support of just being around not pushing me when all is upside down will help ,but he reckons it’s not only that but the stress of watching me become unwell too.
So iv been forced to take meds well away this weekend my body hates it and I feel nausea and of course no sex of which is strange to me still needing it but it’s become compulsive  as it really relieves my anxiety , and to add a cherry on the cake Mental health rang Friday before leaving to say Dr says to return all meds to pharmacy they concerned I’ll commit suicide with it lol I have had better ways of thinking how I would do it without suffering with meds overdose. On a brighter side  my therapist Becs is voicing on Thursday she’ll be there no matter what despite saying she’s concerned I’ll get sick so I’m planning healthier ways to cope coming this week I’m gonna walk to therapy from home and Becs is gonna help add other ways .

And I guess on a different note i made it away from home we travel back tommorow I can’t wait !

The memories of what next?

Recently I spoke with my old therapist she has many years experience in defending aswell as writing up reports on abuse cases that will be going to court. I generally wanted to know the course of action that will happen ,how invasive are the questions ,time frames etc. seen I now live over seas ! M was incredibly truthful with me in explaining that more that 85 percent of her clients regret or are more traumatized than ever after either beginning or finishing the court trial, by this stage I was crying on the phone “we spoke about my reasons ,they pretty simple im at a honest stage im sick of hearing how my uncle for one continues to molest children even at the age of 77 there around and even though he has dementia and numerous other health issues he still remembers how to do this “YUK” and yet family still hold onto the belief his not aware anymore ,shame leave him the live in a very poverty stricken squatter camp in south Africa so im guessing these young teens are more venerable! Then for me there was not only him I was abused by a cousin and four of his friends and roughly same time there was another group of three that joined separately  making a total of 8 offenders so my battle was going to be more intense. M also spoke of the strain on my family as all will be interviewed and we talking of a time frame over 30 odd years how would we manage? … could we survive this?

At this point i battle daily to stay grounded as night falls and my mind wonders were too , M as far away as we are is available for more chats surrounding my questions …she made me promise that either way forward id not do it alone I need a small group of supporters of professionals and family who no my queues .There’s something about that I hate grrr I so want to go it alone its mine and ill deal with it ,there’s to the other piece of contacting sexual abuse rape crises and getting support to a police interview next week around more questions on the process , im battling to even ring and ask!

As for now im drowning myself in work 14 hour days it helps my anxiety and for now im home and don’t return till weekend and Monday then home 3 days were ill go this interview …”BREATH IM TRYING”

 

 

 

Finding My New Normal After Losing My Old Normal

4 Times and Counting

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I was first diagnosed with breast cancer at 29. February,2015 will be 27 years from the time of my first diagnosis. I have spent almost half my life battling breast cancer.

“Finding your new normal” is one of those popular buzz phrases spoken by oncologists, counsellors, and other cancer survivors. I’ve always felt that this word was like a password to a secret clubhouse that everyone in Cancerland belongs to except for me. Although I know this password, I am obviously missing something that would allow me to gain entry. Maybe a special knock or a secret handshake is also required. While I can spout the phrase “new normal” without difficulty, I’ve never quite understood how those words applied to my life.

If we uttered the phrase “changes to your life” due to cancer, I could easily relate to that. I could draw up a long list of the…

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A Letter To My 29 Year Old Self

4 Times and Counting

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Dear Sharon,

I am here with you on this February morning of 1988, watching you sleep. I am taken aback not just by your youthful appearance but by a look on your face I haven’t seen in years. Even in sleep, your face shows a look of optimism and blind faith that everything in your life will turn out alright.  You still innocently believe that the universe is a fair and orderly place where good people are rewarded and bad people are punished. I wonder if this is the last time you will ever look like this or if it takes a few more days or weeks for that innocence to disappear forever.                                                   

You think you are going through a rough patch right now due to recent personal losses. By the time this day is over, the break-up with your boyfriend and the lay-off from your job will be the…

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STICKS and STONES by Topaz Winters

One’s dignity may be assaulted, vandalized and cruelly mocked, but it can never be taken away unless it is surrendered. ― Michael J. Fox

Rose and Stone
“I sometimes pretend I’m a Phoenix” – Topaz Winters, from Sticks and Stones

 

It’s my pleasure to bring you another poem submitted by Topaz Winters. Her poem takes us inside the maelstrom of a wounded spirit stuck between feeling the reality of unrelenting anguish from abuse, trauma, abandonment, and the dream of love and life as first imagined. The journey to healing is never swift or without setbacks captured in the line, “I sometimes pretend I’m a phoenix.” Topaz’s advocacy for survivors and awareness is greatly appreciated.  Topaz offered her poem as a tribute to the readers and authors that know abuse and trauma all too well. Thank you for your continued support, Topaz.  And now, dear reader, I submit to you, Sticks and Stones by Topaz Winters. Continue reading “STICKS and STONES by Topaz Winters”

Making Themes Not Resolutions For 2015

Reblogged from 4 Times And Counting

4 Times and Counting

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Having made and promptly broken every resolution made for New Years in the  past, I’m trying something different this year. I have decided to pick 2 keywords as my themes for the year which will hopefully guide my actions in the 12 months ahead.

The words I have chosen for 2015 are “create” and “giving”.  I want to build up and not tear down. I would like to make something new, whether it is a new blog post, an article written out of my comfort zone, an e-book, or building a sense of community in my online and virtual worlds. I want to share my experiences more transparently and honestly in the hopes that even one reader will say to herself, “hey, I’m not alone feeling this way”. As I wrote in an earlier post, The Winning Ticket, I want to give back to my community, not keep…

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Breast Cancer: It Is Going To Be A Bumpy Ride

My newest blog post is on the psychological effects of a breast cancer diagnosis and treatment. Much of the content would apply to any other significant trauma as it covers anxiety, depression, and PTSD.

4 Times and Counting

A breast cancer diagnosis is a life altering event, physically, spiritually, and emotionally. Surprisingly, little attention has been devoted to conducting scientific studies that measure anxiety, depression, and PTSD rates in first time breast cancer patients. Even less scientific attention has been paid to these psychological effects in patients who have experienced a recurrence or a metastasis of their cancer. The statistics available are all over the map but it can safely be said that almost all breast cancer patients will suffer from depression and high anxiety levels sometime on their journey from diagnosis to post-treatment.  

These feelings may be short-term for many, disappearing within a few months after treatment ends. A significant percentage of first time breast cancer survivors (US studies say 25% while European and Australian studies say at least 50%) will go on to develop long term post-traumatic stress disorder. There is very little statistical evidence pinpointing…

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