You know what sounds like a terrible idea? At-home electroshock therapy. But according to The Daily Beast, this isn’t as terrifying as it sounds. Writer Casey Schwartz decided to test the Fisher Wallace Cranial Stimulator, which claims to target the limbic system and stimulate the release of dopamine and serotonin. The thing looks like a remote control with two electrodes you attach to your forehead, and could potentially help with depression, anxiety, insomnia, OCD, drug addictions, and post-traumatic stress disorder. And interestingly, Casey kind of liked the device. Keep reading »
If you thought this fall/winter was gnarly before, get ready for it to get a whole lot worse: This weekend saw the end of Daylight Saving Time, which means we’ll lose another hour of sunlight. For some, that’s no big deal, but for the rest of us, it means we’ll need to hunker down and make a plan.
After the jump, some great winter blues advice, straight from you, dear Frisky readers. Keep reading »
Guys, fall/winter gloom has officially arrived. By the late afternoon it’s already dark out! I don’t know about you, but the lack of serious sunlight hours are starting to get to me. On the east coast, anyway, we’re averaging around 10 hours of sun light a day, which sounds like a lot, but isn’t really, when you consider how many of those are spent indoors. It stinks when you get out of work and it’s already dark out — even if you’re not one of the 10 million people clinically affected with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), the winter can be a difficult time on your psyche. So we’re wondering, what do you do to combat the winter blues? Tell us in the comments! Keep reading »
I’m not gonna lie — the last two weeks have been a blur of crapitude. Cavities, a bad cold, emotional dramz and more have left me both physically and psychologically drained. I’ve spent way too much time on my couch but can’t foresee any reason NOT to be there either. Usually, I’m pretty good about calling a friend, or getting proactive when things get me down, but this particular perfect storm of physical and emotional pain has rendered me totally useless. I have watched so much “Law & Order: SVU” this week that I’m on the verge of writing Stabler and Benson fan-fic.
We all feel like total poop sometimes, but not all of us cope with it in the same ways. What are your secret tips and tricks for getting through a rough time? Keep reading »
Depression, the way it’s depicted in popular culture and cultural myth is almost glamorous. Someone who is struggling under the weight of their depression is depicted as reflective. Brooding. Intense. Romantic. Feeling things so deeply that they’re driven to suicide. Think Kurt Cobain, Elliot Smith, Sylvia Plath, Virginia Woolf. They are not necessarily people you envy or want to emulate. But they’re nevertheless the first ones most of us think of when we think about what someone with depression is like.
The myth of depression is much more interesting than the reality, however: Depression is very boring. There is nothing interesting at all about hiding from the world in the bed sheets, literally or figuratively. Those Prozac commercials where the egg is feeling down, colored in black-and-white? They’re actually truthful advertising. The feelings of sadness and despair are an immobilizing psychic pain, stripping the color from your life and the energy from your spirit, and leading you to believe the safest place to be would be to draw into yourself like a cocoon. When you pull out of it, you really do feel as if you’ve wrestled out of something tight and constricting. Keep reading »
“I struggled with chronic depression. I was in bad shape. I knew I had to get back in school and back in some kind of structured environment and… continue. [...] I did do therapy and antidepressants for a brief period, which helped me. Which is what therapy does: it gives you another perspective when you are so lost in your own spiral, your own bulls**t. It helps. And honestly? Antidepressants help! If you can change your brain chemistry enough to think: ‘I want to get up in the morning; I don’t want to sleep until four in the afternoon. I want to get up and go do my s**t and go to work and…’ Reset the auto-meter, kick-start the engine!”
— Jon Hamm, whose mother died when he was 10, discusses with The Guardian how school, therapy and antidepressants helped him cope with the death of his father when he was 20. I know it happened a long time ago, but I’d still be happy to lend a shoulder to cry on anytime Mr. Hamm might need one. Call me. [via The Guardian] Keep reading »
When I was growing up I had a friend who was as aloof as she was glamorous. She had a way of holding the cutest and most charming boys in her thrall and all the girls wanted her to like them. Whenever she had problems with her romances, her schoolwork, her friends or her family, she was very mysterious about it. Her glass facade never shattered in public and very seldom would she even admit to having problems at all. Some days, random Tuesdays or Thursdays, she wouldn’t be in school, even though she hadn’t looked sick the day before. She would call them her “mental health days.”
She seemed very melodramatic to me, as if this were all just part of her act. But it was also exciting. My mother is a lot like Betty Draper and she would say to me when I was growing up that if I was not bleeding, I was fine. That kind of mothering doesn’t exactly teach someone self-care: if I didn’t want to go to school, I would lock myself in my bedroom and shriek at my mother through the door that I wanted to be left alone. A “mental health day,” on the other hand, sounded so grown-up, like she was taking a “personal day” at the office and we weren’t just a couple of 10th graders. I could imagine my friend calm and collected, attending to her own needs like a cat licking his paws. Maybe it was melodramatic, but it still sounded nice. Keep reading »
Going away to college is scary — don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. When I left my little, rural town in upstate New York and came to the big city for college at NYU, I was terrified. All of the sudden I had to live on my own with people I barely knew, cook for myself, and (gasp!) learn how to do laundry. An A+ student my whole life, I had to learn to live with B’s and professors who graded like they had a personal vendetta against me. The whole experience of being a first semester freshman at college sucked. It didn’t help that, before classes began, someone in my grade jumped out of the window of a neighboring dorm and killed himself. Within a week, I decided I wanted to change schools. But my parents convinced me to stick it out a bit longer and, eventually, I began to like my new life and surroundings.
Anyone who tells you the transition to college is easy is a straight-up liar. And while I’m not saying I can ease all the pain and stress of adjusting, I can share a few things I learned from my experience that may help you out. Keep reading »