Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Tag: Mother Bear

Opening the Dialogue: Can Families and Survivors Heal Together?

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If we believe that emotional problems are primarily disorders of the brain, then perhaps taking a “fill-in-the-blank” medical history is sufficient. However, if we believe that emotional crises and dis-ease are problems that exist between people, in our sticky or not-so-sticky web of relationships, then whether families, survivors and those in crisis can heal together is a much more relevant, if still complicated, question. Perhaps the most honest answer to this question is: “It depends..."

Man Jumps, News at…?

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It is time for a new understanding of suicidal feelings and actions. Perhaps a more open dialogue, without fear of sirens and police and involuntary hospitalizations, would have made a difference for one young man here in Asheville last month. Perhaps more public local conversation would have saved some of the 45 lives we lost here in Buncombe County in 2010. Perhaps a more public and safe national conversation would have saved some of the 22 veterans who died from suicide every day in 2010.

We Are All Adam Lanza’s Mother (& other things we’re...

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I do not understand how we can continue to avoid the conversation about psychiatric medications and their role in the violence that is affecting far too many of our children, whether Seung-Hui Cho, Eric Harris, Kip Kinkel, or Jeff Weise (all of whom were either taking or withdrawing from psychotropic medications) or the scores of children and adults they have killed and harmed. It is not clear what role medications played in the Newtown tragedy, though news reports are now suggesting there is one.

Building a Bridge to Hope

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Hope heals. Thousand of years of experience and, more recently, numerous hope studies, prove this to be true. Yet hope is still a 4-letter word in many mental health settings. How can we build a bridge to hope from hope-stealing physical and emotional pain, hopeless diagnoses and prognoses, and hope-numbing side effects?

What Are We Recovering From? Making a Case for Recovery

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Is “recovery” a useful concept or is it overused, co-opted or simply not an accurate way to describe the process of learning to work with and through madness and life’s challenges. Mother Bear Community Action Network explores these arguments and makes a case for recovery.

Shanghai’d in Recovery

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I am honored to share the story of one family that has learned about the power of language, hope and letting go with love so that every family member can grab on to a life worth living.

Whose Recovery Is This?! Helping Families Heal

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Last night I had the privilege of attending my first Family Den with other Mother Bears like myself—parents, spouses, siblings and adult children. All of us have family members who have experienced mental health challenges. All of us had a story to tell.

Snake Medicine: Transforming Our Stories

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The stories we tell ourselves and others have the power to heal or to harm. This is a story about how we define mental health, the challenges we face in pursuit of it, and the power of transforming our stories.

A Road Map to Hope

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In my last blog, invited readers to consider sharing their families’ recovery stories and to open to the possibility of the healing that is available when we connect with each other through this sharing. I would like to share one of these stories with all of you.

The Power of Storytelling

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Over the years, I have heard many powerful recovery stories. I’ve also had many opportunities to share our family’s struggle with mental health challenges and our recovery journey.

A Mother Bear’s Story

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In the last year of high school, my daughter’s personality suddenly changed, almost overnight it seemed. Initially, I chalked it up to adolescence. What had...