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Tag Archive: mental illness

Jul 20 2014

“I’m a strong woman and I don’t need help.”

A common argument against interventions that aim to decrease harassment and violence against women–conference harassment policies, stronger anti-bullying measures on social media, and so on–is made by women and goes something like this: “I’m a strong woman and I don’t need to have my hand held.” Sometimes this is served with a side of “You’re the real …

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Jul 18 2014

Depression and Self-Gaslighting

Gaslighting is a term you probably know, but if you don’t, it refers to the act of telling and convincing someone that their feelings or perceptions are not really true. In the context of interpersonal relationships, gaslighting is considered to be an abusive behavior, as it can render people incapable of trusting themselves and their …

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Jul 17 2014

A Primer On Atypical Depression

At CONvergence two weeks ago, I and a few other people did a panel on myths about mental illness. It was really great, and I hope that there will be a video of it up eventually. At one point, I tangentially mentioned atypical depression, a type of depression that is sometimes contrasted with melancholic depression, …

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Jul 05 2014

Depression Is Not Sadness (Again)

[Content note: mental illness, depression, anxiety, suicide] When I think about the frequent charge that therapists and psychiatrists and those who work with them are trying to “medicalize” “normal” emotions like sadness and fear, I think that people don’t really understand how emotions like sadness and fear can be distinguished from mental illnesses like depression …

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Jun 25 2014

Are Celebrities Responsible for Modeling Good Mental Health?

[Content note: depression, mental illness, suicide] My newest piece at the Daily Dot is about Lana Del Rey, mental illness, and what we expect from artists and celebrities. Singer Lana Del Rey has recently reignited an age-old discussion about the glamorization of depression and suicide among (and in) young musicians. In a Guardian interview she has since tried to distance herself from, Del Rey focused on …

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May 26 2014

Trigger Warnings Are Not “Censorship”

In unrelated news, I have a post up at the Daily Dot today about trigger warnings. Excerpt: Students at various universities have been trying to take trigger warnings offline by requesting them in certain educational materials. Predictably, even professional and reasonable writers and journalists have responded to this by unleashing a hysteria about “censorship,” “dumbing …

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May 24 2014

Masculinity, Violence, and Bandaid Solutions

[Content note: violence, guns, mass shootings, misogyny] We’re all familiar with the pattern now: a solitary young white man goes on a shooting rampage. People die. The media describes him as “crazy,” “disturbed,” “troubled,” “insane.” Everyone collectively bemoans the failings of our mental healthcare system, presuming that its failure is relevant here. People with mental …

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May 23 2014

On Hating Yourself, And All Of Your Selves

[Content note: depression] The self, as everyone learns in an introductory psychology class, is not a stable or definable entity. “Self” is not a biography or a fashion style or a set of identity labels–it is something more contextual, more situational, more fluid than that. Selves shift depending on who we’re with and what we’re doing …

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May 09 2014

You Can’t Diagnose Mental Illness from a Tweet

Today at the Daily Dot, I discussed the strange Twitter behavior of a former Paypal executive and the predictable mass rush to claim that it’s evidence of “mental illness”: Is Rakesh Agrawal mentally ill? I have no idea, and neither do you. There’s a long history of using mental illness as a multipurpose scapegoat when people do …

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Apr 29 2014

Promoting Mental Health in the Workplace

[Content note: mental illness, including eating disorders] This post was requested by Kate [not FtB!Kate], who donated to my conference fundraiser. She wanted to hear my opinion on mental health in the workplace and how employees and employers can foster a culture that values and promotes mental health. She had some of her own suggestions, …

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