Sunday, April 11, 2021

To Live and (Almost) Die in L.A.: A Survivor’s Tale

After 25 years of chronic emergency, 22 mental hospitalizations, a stint at a “community mental health center,” 13 years in a "board & care," repeated withdrawals from addictions to legal drugs, and a 12-year marriage, I plan to live every last breath out as a survivor, an advocate, and an artist.

Why “Stabilizing” People is Entirely the Wrong Idea

If human beings were meant to be entirely stable entities, then “stabilizing” them would be an entirely good thing; a target for mental health treatment that all could agree on. But it’s way more complex than that: healthy humans are constantly moving and changing. They have a complex mix of stability and instability that is hard to pin down. All this relates to one of my favorite subjects, the intersection of creativity and madness.

Researchers Identify 27 Categories of Emotion

A new study finds that emotions may be represented by 27 categories, with each category relating to others in a more complex and continuous fashion than previously understood.

“ADHD Brains are the Most Creative”

In AlterNet, Scott Barry Kaufman reviews the evidence that people who've been diagnosed with ADHD often have higher than average levels of creativity. He...

“Making Theater Autism-Friendly”

-The Atlantic reports on the growth of "autism-friendly" movie theaters, sports arenas and now live theaters.

Dickinson’s Legacy is Incomplete Without Discussing Trauma

In this piece for The Establishment, physician Isabel C. Legarda explores the possibility that the poet Emily Dickinson may have been a survivor of sexual violence. "Absent...

A Glimpse Into the Brain, Drawn by the Father of Neuroscience

From The New York Times: A new exhibit at the Grey Gallery at New York University presents 80 hand-drawn renderings of the brain by Santiago...

Arts Participation May Improve Mental Well-Being and Social Inclusion

Introductory arts courses at Open Arts Essex show improvements in mental well-being and social inclusion for individuals with mental health challenges.

Psychodynamic Therapy Revealed to be as Efficacious as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Meta-analytic study finds that psychodynamic therapy outcomes are equivalent to those of CBT and other empirically supported treatments.

“Therapy Wars: The Revenge of Freud”

Writing in The Guardian, Oliver Burkeman discusses the comeback of Freud’s psychoanalysis, along with humanistic therapy, interpersonal therapy, transpersonal therapy, and transactional analysis and...

Healing from Psychiatry: A Community Art Book

I began reaching out to other psychiatric survivors, asking whether they would like to have their art featured in a book, and the response I received was amazing. People openly shared not only their art but their personal stories, their feelings, and their painful journeys into, through, and out of psychiatry.

Video Games By Prescription Continue Developing

"Is this the future of medicine?" asks Stephen Armstrong in the British Medical Journal. "Little Artie has been left at the doorstep of his...

The Art of Madness

In this piece for The Paris Review, Cody Delistraty details the French painter Jean Dubuffet's efforts to collect artwork made by people deemed mentally ill...

Hip Hop Therapy Psychiatrists Ask Media to Keep It Real

The Guardian and other media outlets ran articles about two psychiatrists promoting "the use of hip-hop as an aid to the treatment of mental...

The Therapist who Saved my Life

In this creative nonfiction piece for Literary Hub, one woman shares her story of trauma, depression, and suicidality, and recounts the unconventional approach of the...

Karen Pence Picks a Cause, and Art Therapists Feel Angst

From the New York Times: On Inauguration Day, Karen Pence announced her support for the mental health profession of art therapy. While many art therapists...

Study Finds No Correlation between Personality at 14 and 77

This result calls into question popular notions about the correlations between personality and later-life achievement and health outcomes.

New Traction for Art Therapy as a Treatment for Depression

New study investigates the acceptability of a phenomenologically informed, manual-based art therapy for clients diagnosed with moderate to severe depression.

How Our Ancestors’ Trauma May Influence Who We Are

In this blog post, Dale M. Kushner explains how the field of epigenetics can illustrate the role of ancestral and transgenerational trauma in shaping our...

Dual-award Winning Play and Film About Human Beings, not Psychopathology

[M]y play, SHADES, and my film, "Is Anybody Listening?" are about people who have experienced major troubles, even trauma or other tragedies, who have dark secrets that torment them, but who use connection, love, humor, and creativity to come through, even to heal. And no one in the play or the film is pathologized.

Study Finds Heavy Metal Music Beneficial to Mental Health

A new study highlights the role heavy metal music plays in the mental health of adolescents facing adversity.

Combining Art Therapy and Mindfulness for Refugees

A new article, published in The Arts in Psychotherapy, describes the ways art therapy and mindfulness have benefitted refugees and asylum seekers in Hong Kong.

“’Yalom’s Cure’ is a Meditative Immersion into Leading a Psychologist’s Life”

The LA Times reviews a new film about Irvin David Yalom, existential psychologist, emeritus professor of psychiatry at Stanford Unversity. "’Yalom's Cure’ dispenses an...

“Let the Soul Dangle”: How Mind-Wandering Spurs Creativity

From Aeon: An emerging field of neuroscience has begun to reveal how contemplating art can lead to positive mind-wandering, psycho-biological self-regulation, and creativity. "Can art itself...

Webinar Discussion – Rethinking Madness

A free recording of last week's webinar anchored to Phil Borges' Crazywise, a documentary exploring alternative approaches to mental health, is now available. Over 4,000 people...

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