Did you know that Friendship can ruin Therapy?

The therapist I worked with for seven years was amazing, we dealt with some extremely emotional issues including PTSD sexual abuse and maternal narcissism.  She validated my feelings and showed the kind of empathy that I’d never received as a child, therefore, I often craved her as a friend while in therapy.  I soon understood boundaries, and realized it just wouldn’t work; therapy isn’t friendship

A friend told me of an occurrence where friendship ruined the relationship with her and her therapist.  She had been meeting “X” every 3 weeks for roughly 2 years, drudging through many agonizing, uncomfortable, personal issues and trusted “X” entirely with what she disclosed, more than with any other therapist.

When she was pregnant with her second child, also experiencing difficulties with her spouse, “X” was there to convey her thoughts to.  By the time the baby was to arrive, they worked through marital issues, which alleviated the situation at home and for her.

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Why doesn’t she just leave him?

Really?  And women should just up and leave an abusive relationship; as if it were that easy.

‘Why doesn’t she just leave?’ is a timeworn question about women trapped in relationships that are physically and/or emotionally abusive to them.  Economic dependence is clearly part of the story — many women lack the financial means to leave and find themselves trapped by both poverty and abuse.

Of the women who do attempt to escape the abuse, some opt to petition a judge for a civil restraining order, also called a Protection From Abuse (PFA) order, for protection from abuse, harassment, threats, or intimidation. Research shows that PFAs can promote women’s safety and help women manage the threat of abuse.

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Could I have an Eating Disorder? Women Over 50

I originally posted this on my Niume.com blog (now edited) and received the most readers of any of my posts (4.4K).  Eating disorders may occur at any age, and it’s awfully difficult to accept when you are middle-aged and over 50+.

Two years ago, I was 58 years old and struggled with an eating disorder called anorexia.  That was extremely outrageous to me recalling a time when I had ballooned to a whopping 285 lbs.

During the late 1990’s I had been hospitalized too many times for major depression and on a cocktail of too many medications.  Countless meds with their side effects increased my weight, and the heaviness remained that way for many years.  But, before the gallbladder illness in November 2012, I had slimmed down to 185 lbs.

Yes, the gallbladder fiasco. Long story short, surgeons operated twice to finally remove this painfully unusable organ, and throughout this time,  my diet was:  “No fried food and no rich desserts or you will irritate your gallbladder.”

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Do you know the top 5 Cancers Affecting Women?

Understanding the risk factors associated with these five cancers is the first step to take in minimizing your personal risk.

A cancer diagnosis can often be directly linked to your family medical history, your lifestyle choices, and your environment. You can’t control your family medical history and only some aspects of your environment are up to you. But lifestyle choices like diet, weight, activity level and smoking are yours to manage.

“Preventive measures are so heavily underutilized by people. And yet they work. Everything in moderation really works,” says Richard R. Barakat, MD, chief of the gynecology service at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.

While the overall odds are that two out of three women will never get cancer, 700,000 women were diagnosed with cancer in 2008 (the most recent year for which CDC data is available), most with one of the following types:

Breast cancer accounted for 26 percent of female cancer cases and 15 percent of the 272,000 female cancer deaths that year. A woman’s odds of getting this cancer: 1 in 8

Lung and bronchus cancers accounted for 14 percent of female cancer cases and 26 percent of all deaths. A woman’s odds of getting this cancer: 1 in 16

Colon and rectal cancers accounted for 10 percent of all cancer cases and 9 percent of all deaths. A woman’s odds of getting this cancer: 1 in 19 Continue reading

Maternal Narcissism ~ Mom, only wishing you could have said these words to me…

They burned the bridge, then ask why I don't visit. | unluckymonster made this with Spoken.ly:

Recalling my childhood, my mother seldom had any positive or encouraging words for me, mainly heartless or cruel remarks, only criticizing me for one thing or another spewed from her mouth. She was continually displeased, and only now recognizing that it would be impossible to accomplish ever pleasing this woman.

I was thinking the other day, what words would myself and perhaps others wish their narcissistic moms compassionately said to them.

Mom, if only you could have said:

~I know you don’t lie, of course, I believe you

~Always come to me when you’re upset or angry, I love you

~I’ll always believe in you, whatever your dreams are

~Let’s just have a girl’s day out once in a while, your choice, whatever you want

~You look so cute in those clothes

~Don’t focus on body image, it’s what’s inside

~You’re more important to me than anything

~I’m so damn proud of you.

~I love reading your stories/artwork/playing games

~You smell so nice and clean

~Don’t always spend time in your bedroom, we should spend more time together

~Your feelings matter you have a right to your opinion, I’m not always right and remember, we all make mistakes

~You look like something is bothering you, want to talk about it?

~Let me take care of you when you’re so sick, how about hot tea? Or I’ll sit beside you or we’ll lay in bed together

~Sure, have your friends over anytime, they are always welcome

~You’re so precious to me, having a daughter is a blessing

~Anything you want to ask me, go right ahead

~I love the way you laugh

~I’m sorry, it’s my fault, not yours/my mistake sorry I made you feel bad

~You are worthy, don’t let anyone make you feel that you are not

~Someone is going to be a lucky man to have you as his wife

~I want to just hug you, and keep hugging you

~I’ve got the best daughter a mother could have

Written and copyrighted by Deb McCarthy/2017

Difference between sexual assault and sexual abuse?

In newspapers and media reports, it’s sometimes stated women were violated and “sexually assaulted” or “abused”. Although I’m cognizant that abuse is traumatic regardless, “assault” covers such a broad range.

My point here is, are the public aware of the seriousness surrounding the most horrific assault cases.  I located information below on the Gov’t of Western Australia Department of Health  (Sexual Assault Resource Centre) website.

What is sexual assault?

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He Cheated on You ~ Now What?

Image: pixabay.com

Image: pixabay.com

7 Things to do after you find out he is cheating

You’ve just learned the unthinkable:  Your significant other cheated on you.

It’s the twist every one of us in a committed relationship dreads facing the most, and now it’s happening to you. Your mind is reeling, your heart is racing, and you’re hurting so much, you’re not sure you can go on. But you have to.

Believe it or not, there are things you can do — productive, healthy things — when you find out your husband or boyfriend has betrayed you in the worst possible way: by being with someone else. At a time like this, when you’re in complete shock, denial, disbelief and pain, it’s all you can do to wake up in the morning and get out of bed. But there are other ways to cope with such a devastating revelation.


Here are seven steps to take when you find out he cheated on you.

1. Decide whether you want to stay with him or not and whether your relationship is worth saving

This will take some time after you’ve processed what happened. One way to figure out whether you should stay together and fight for your love is, to be honest about the type of man he is and the sort of betrayal involved. If he’s not the kind of guy who strays and it seems like it was a one-shot deal, you should try giving him another chance. Ditto if he confesses the affair or at least apologizes profusely and seems genuinely remorseful once you find out about it.

“Slip-ups happen, but the good news is that when they truly are slip-ups, they’re survivable,” William July, the author of Confessions of an Ex-Bachelor, tells Cosmo.

But if he’s done this before, this was more than just a one-time thing (i.e., it was an actual full-blown affair or romantic relationship with someone else), it happened with his ex, or he doesn’t seem the least bit sorry, think long and hard before choosing to stick it out.

2. Talk it out

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The Lady Found in the Snow

She was in her fifties and reported missing four or five days ago, a picture of a woman looking cheerful, with striking blue eyes, shoulder length light brown hair wearing a black and green mid-length parka. It was on the news and in the newspapers repeatedly, her picture of a woman with a warm smile.

To me it sounded peculiar, as if intentional or planned; waking in the morning, followed by calling in sick to work then vanishing. When reported missing, the police were summoned, then several friends and relatives began searching also. The investigation dragged on with no success, and it’s as if she went ‘poof’ into thin air, no trace, no use of credit cards.

Days passed, when someone identified her van at a cemetery, and not too distant from the van they discovered her body dead in the snow. The police didn’t reveal information as to the cause of death.

The newspapers stated that she was a registered nurse, worked for twenty-two years at the same hospital, extremely well liked and exceptional at her job. Her spouse was a clergy at the only church in the town where the family lived, and she leaves behind two children.

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Research shows a link between Migraine and Estrogen


This article appeared today in Science World Report ~ “The Link Between Migraine And Unstable Levels Of Estrogen”.

Migraines are usually more common in women than men. Although there is still no explanation for this, some researchers suggest that the female hormone, estrogen may be one of the factors.

It has been reported that migraine is the third most common illness in the world. According to statistics, 1 in 4 American households has one person who experiences migraine. It has also been said that women are three times more likely to suffer from migraine than men. The condition in women totals to 18 percent of the population, compared to only 6 percent of men.

According to Medical News Today, researchers believe that the increase incidence of migraine in women is most likely because of both biological and psychosocial factors. But, the gender difference is most obvious in women of reproductive age, and many scientists believe that the increase in the level of hormones may be what’s causing the problem.

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3 Proven Tips and Advice to Protect Women Travelling Alone

I took away some invaluable tips and advice from this article written in The Huffington Post. Women or anyone would find these useful.

Imagine this: window-shopping in Paris or people-watching in Rome — without having to stress over your restless companion. It’s not just a fantasy: a 2014 survey from Booking.com reports that

Here, our guide to venturing out on your town.

How To Protect Yourself On The Road

1. “Print directions ahead of time. It sounds simple, but we’re so used to cell phones that it’s easy to forget we might not have Internet access abroad. I also love Pacsafe’s small, portable safe. If you’re in a hostel or a B&B, you need a secure place to lock up your passport and cash.” —Alexandra Baackes, blogger, AlexInWanderland.com.

2. “I carry extra cash in my shoe or a hidden pocket, enough to take a cab or get to a safe place if I find myself in trouble. And if I need assistance, I approach women and families, who I’ve found are more likely to help.” — Marybeth Bond, National Geographic author and founder of GutsyTraveler.com.

3. “I don’t drink too much. If I’m somewhere unfamiliar, I want to be sharp and aware. But of course, in Italy, I’m having wine with my pasta.” — Cat Clifford, a writer who spent her last five birthdays in a different country — alone!

What’s the Plan?

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Unloved Daughters and Friendship Problems

image: QuoteForest

While reading this article below, I immediately thought of myself and the difficulties I’ve experienced throughout my life with friends.  For me, I believe it’s been a huge trust issue and becoming over-sensitive during many of my friendships.  At times, due to a phone call or an e-mail not being returned, I interpreted this as my mother disregarding me when I was younger, and now friends not giving a hoot about me either.  Many other traumatic instances during my childhood came into play, thus losing many friendships.

This article on PsychCentral.com written by 

While rarely mentioned, one common legacy of an unloving mother is the daughter’s diminished ability or total inability to form close and sustaining friendships. This is a significant loss since friendship plays an important role in many women’s lives: our girlfriends are often the people we turn to in times of joy and trouble, when we need company or support, or we just need someone to truly listen. Unloved daughters often have trouble forging these bonds or maintaining them; the emotional isolation they felt in childhood is often replicated in adulthood when they find themselves with few or no girlfriends, or women they can actually trust.

Why is that? Our mothers are the first females we know in close proximity and we learn, for better or worse, not just what it means to be female but how females connect and relate. As children, we absorb the lessons our mothers model through their behaviors, accepting them as normal—we have nothing to compare them to, after all—and these become the unconscious templates for how we believe women act and relate in the outside world. Even though we’re unaware of them and their influence, we carry these scripts when we go out into the world as children, adolescents, and adults, and make friends with other girls and, later, women.

As the daughter of a jealous and withholding mother, I was cautious and wary as a girl when it came to friendships, especially in adolescence. Looking back, it’s clear that I viewed all girls as potential competitors who, if I let them, would somehow get the upper hand and hurt me. Another women, now in her fifties, confides that “My own neediness and insecurity trip me up with friends. I always end up, somehow, being the pleaser with other women. I give 100% and they give 10% and I end up feeling used.”

Joan Crawford and adopted daughter, Christina, wearing matching outfits in 1943

The internalized voice of the mother—telling you that you are unlovable, unlikeable, unworthy, inadequate—can become especially shrill when you’re in the company of other women, whether they are neighbors, colleagues, acquaintances or even girlfriends you actually long to be close to.

Gleaned from many conversations, here are four pieces of the maternal legacy that directly affect female friendships.

  1. Lack of trust

A loving and attuned mother models live in a world in which people are trustworthy and that extending yourself—leaving yourself open and vulnerable to another person—has great benefits. The unloved daughter learns the opposite and, even worse because her mother never acknowledges her behaviors, the daughter not only distrusts other people but her own perceptions and feelings. In friendships, she may be dismissive or wary or in need of constant reassurance and proof that her friend is really on her side. Either way, how she acts—even though she may want and need the friendship desperately—effectively sabotages it.

  1. Unable to heed boundaries

Absent the validation of self a loving mother provides, unloved daughters have difficulty recognizing what constitutes a healthy boundary; they may vacillate between being overly armored and being much too clingy. While this is partly a result of the daughter’s lack of trust, it also reflects her ongoing unfulfilled need for love and validation. “I think I exhausted my friendships when I was in my twenties and thirties,” one daughter, 48, reported. “It took me a long time to recognize that my friends needed space and that, sometimes, my constant demands for their attention were too much. Therapy helped me see that all I was doing was focusing on my needs without understanding the give-and-take friendship requires.”

  1. Over-sensitivity

All unloved daughters have trouble managing negative emotions—they have difficulty self-regulating and are prone to rumination—and, if their mothers have been dismissive, combative, or hypercritical, are always vigilant and self-protective. A friend’s comment or gesture that wouldn’t even appear on a securely-attached daughter’s radar can be totally misunderstood and blown out of proportion by an insecurely-attached one. These can be small things—an unreturned phone call, a late invitation, an offhand remark—that become triggers and flashpoints.

  1. Feelings of rivalry
Unfortunately, the unloved daughter’s lack of trust, difficulty with boundaries, and over-sensitivity may be compounded by feelings of rivalry, especially if her mother has been jealous of her or if there was another favored daughter with whom she competed unsuccessfully for her mother’s approval and attention. While unloved daughters who are only children tend to idealize the relationship of sisters—think Little Women—the reality is much more complicated. As Deborah Tannen writes in her book You Were Always Mom’s Favorite: “These two views [of sisters]—someone who sets you straight and someone who twists your words so they boomerang back and hurt you—represent the potential best and worst of sister conversations.”

It’s often hard for the unloved daughter to acknowledge her feelings of competition because the culture tends to look away from or minimize rivalry between and among women. Thinking about sisterhood is so much more pleasant, even though the word frenemy has been around since the 1950s when it was coined to describe politics, not rival girlfriends.  Susan Barash Shapiro’s book Tripping the Prom Queen paints a more realistic picture of the complexity of female connections.

Alas, the loneliness of childhood may be unwittingly extended into adulthood unless conscious awareness is brought to bear on a daughter’s reactivity

Source: http://blogs.psychcentral.com/knotted/2016/02/unloved-daughters-and-the-problem-of-friendship/

Friendship Ruined Therapy

The therapist I have been working with for over five years has been amazing, we’ve dealt with some extremely emotional issues including PTSD sexual abuse and maternal narcissism.  She validated my feelings and showed the kind of empathy that I’d never received as a child, therefore, I’ve often craved her as a friend.  I soon understood boundaries, and realized it just wouldn’t work; therapy isn’t friendship

A friend told me of an occurrence where friendship ruined the relationship with her and her therapist.  She had been meeting X every 3 weeks for roughly 2 years, drudging through many agonizing, uncomfortable, personal issues and trusted X entirely with what she disclosed, more than with any other therapist.

When she was pregnant with her second child, also experiencing difficulties with her spouse, X was there to convey her thoughts to.  By the time the baby was to arrive, they worked through marital issues, which alleviated the situation at home and for her.

After the baby was born, she didn’t see X for several months, however, she did phone her to shout with joy that it was a baby girl, and X exclaimed “hooray!”  She was ‘on the fence’ about sending baby pictures, yet she did send a few via e-mail in the end and X asked to see more.

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Women ~ We criticize ourselves 8 times per day? Why?

Health experts warn of dangerous trend as survey finds women self-criticise eight times a day

I’m guilty of this, perhaps not to the degree of eight times per day, but more than I would like.  When my eating disorder was at its worse a few years ago, I was fanatical with my body image, pausing in front of store windows, any type of mirror accessible, weighing myself two or three times per day.  I knew this wasn’t normal, but I was ill and anorexic.

While focusing on my body image at the Eating Disorder Program, I became more mindful about why this obsession was so essential to me, who was I striving to please and was I more contented now that I dropped all of the weight? 

No, I was fucking miserable now! Thinner, yet depressed. Who was I trying to please? My mother ~ I could never have pleased her anyways.  It was an eye-opener, yet it has taken years and I’m still in therapy trying to deal with the impact of her harsh abuse.  I have recovered from the eating disorder, yet I still have setbacks with “looking fat” and glancing in mirrors, but less often.  The lack of self-confidence/self-esteem I still struggle with and it still follows me.

An article appearing on News.com.au written by Sophie Aubrey, (News Corp Australia Network) writes:

HEALTH experts warn women’s impulse to criticise their own bodies is dangerously intensifying after a new study found the average woman puts herself down at least eight times each day.

Social media has been blamed for driving a widespread increase in self-judgment as the survey of 2000 British women revealed one in seven were slagging themselves off frequently through the day. And many are berating themselves first thing in the morning, with half of those quizzed confessing to doing so by 9.30am.

Criticisms around appearance and weight are most prevalent, encompassing 13 of the 20 most common put-downs in the Weight Watchers study.

Being negative about one’s earnings, creativity and organisation skills, as well as deflecting compliments, also made the list.

Sydney psychologist and founder of Treat Yourself Well Louise Adams said women’s dissatisfaction with their looks acted like a constant nagging voice “from the minute they open our eyes and think about what they’re going to wear”. To make matters worse, most women were not even aware they were thinking such damaging thoughts, Ms Adams said.

“Lots of my clients are really familiar (with the narrative) but had never thought of it as self-judgment. They thought of it as the truth, and that’s really scary,” she said.

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PTSD & Women Veterans

Female Vietnam vets have higher rates than previously thought, a study says

I haven’t come across as many articles regarding female veterans struggling with PTSD and found this one on Next Avenue.org written by Joan Cook

She writes — My friend, Marsha, is the oldest of seven and the daughter of a World War II combat veteran. Marsha’s father, like most men of his generation, spoke very little about his war experiences, and what happened in the war was never directly known by most of his children.

Like many in her generation, Marsha studied nursing. The military trolled schools of nursing for recruits, desperately in need of women to care for the injured and dying in Vietnam. As with most of her fellow students, Marsha had no experience in traumatic nursing. And, when she found herself in Vietnam, war was all she heard and smelled, even when she closed her eyes.

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Women with Bipolar Disorder, sleep quality affects mood

Poor sleep is associated with negative mood in women with bipolar disorder, according to researchers.

Bipolar disorder is a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks. The condition is marked by extreme mood episodes characterized as manic (highs), depressive (lows) or mixed.

Sleep problems are common in people with bipolar disorder, and poor sleep quality and bipolar disorder appear to exacerbate each other. Previous research shows that poor sleep quality is a symptom of depressive and manic episodes, and that lack of sleep can trigger mania.

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Fatal Prescription: Women and Painkiller Overdoses

In EveryDayHealth.com, they report that more women than ever are dying from painkiller overdoses.  This article was written by Dr. Sanjay Gupta and asks, “How can you spot signs of drug abuse in a loved one?

Americans’ abuse of prescription painkillers has reached epidemic proportions, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC estimates that 15,000 people die every year in this country from overdoses involving opioid or narcotic pain relievers.

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Would you choose Beautiful?

This is another Dove PR experiment to observe how women see themselves.  What door would you choose – honestly?  Would you feel embarrassed choosing the door “beautiful” in front of other people, or do you honestly feel that door reflects you?  Why do you think most people have chosen ‘average’?

Why doesn’t she just leave?

Really?  And women should just up and leave an abusive relationship; as if it were that easy.

‘Why doesn’t she just leave?’ is a timeworn question about women trapped in relationships that are physically and/or emotionally abusive to them.  Economic dependence is clearly part of the story — many women lack the financial means to leave and find themselves trapped by both poverty and abuse.

Of the women who do attempt to escape the abuse, some opt to petition a judge for a civil restraining order, also called a Protection From Abuse (PFA) order, for protection from abuse, harassment, threats, or intimidation. Research shows that PFAs can promote women’s safety and help women manage the threat of abuse.

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Gastric Sleeve vs. Lap Band Surgery ~ Which would be best for me?

I found this link explaining the difference between ‘Gastric Sleeve‘ vs. ‘Lap Band‘ surgery for weight loss.  This is on a commercial site for which I am NOT promoting, however, I thought it explains the surgeries in a clear manner.

Link:   http://lapbandsurgery.com/are-you-a-candidate-for-lap-band-surgery/gastric-banding/gastric-sleeve-vs-lap-band/


Work burnout tied to “Emotional Eating” in women

Women who are fed up with their jobs may be more likely to turn to food for comfort in times of stress, according to a Finnish study.   The study, reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found that those who reported work burnout were also more likely to have a habit of “emotional” eating, or eating when stressed, anxious or down, rather than just hungry.

What’s more, they were more prone to “uncontrolled” eating — the feeling that you’re always hungry or can’t stop eating until all the food’s gone.

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How being unemployed changes your personality

Add another stressor to the financial burden of losing your job. Being unemployed can change the nature of your personality, making you significantly less agreeable and changing your level of conscientious and openness, according to a new study in the Journal of Applied Psychology.

The study, conducted by a team of researchers from the U.K., asked more than 6,000 Germans to self-evaluate five of their core personality traits—agreeableness, conscientiousness, extraversion, neuroticism and openness—over a period of several years. Everyone in the sample began the study with a job, but part of the group lost their jobs and remained unemployed for the duration of the study. Others lost their job and found new employment.

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This is me, I have a Toxic Mother

Just as the quote says here, my mother is very toxic, and very narcissistic.  The huge thing with her was always my weight, she was forever critical of me for gaining any weight and concentrating on body image.  Also, what made me angry, when she met with my friends, they used to say “Deb, you have the most wonderful mother, wish mine was like yours”.  That’s a double hurt.

Men and Women Experience Depression Differently, How?

This article appeared on (Fox News.com) ~ It discusses forms of depression, and how men and women experience depression differently, and also includes other links.

Depressive disorders are a complex and often confusing family of conditions. Sometimes lumped under the general term “depression,” these disorders can cause any combination of several symptoms. Because of this, depressive disorders manifest in a variety of ways, making them sometimes difficult to diagnose.

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Weight Loss Surgery Raises Some Pregnancy Risks

In The New York Times (Health), they reported that women who have undergone bariatric surgery are more likely to deliver premature babies than those with low birth weight, a large new study shows.

The research looked at roughly 15,000 births that took place in Sweden between 1992 & 2009, including about 2,500 women who had had weight loss surgery.  On average, the women delivered about five years after the surgery.

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PTSD common in migraine sufferers

Sometimes my migraines feel like this

I posted this article a few years ago, but thought I would re-post due to the fact that I am a major migraine sufferer (this month has been utter hell, as I have had a migraine or “lighter” headache every single day of January).  I’ve never thought that it was tied to my PTSD, as most of mine appear to be caused by the barometric changes, however it could be a possibility.

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) — Adults who suffer migraine headaches are more apt to have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) than the general population, a new study suggests. And having PTSD and migraine may lead to greater headache-related disability.

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Indoor Tanning: WARNING> That tan could be hazardous

Indoor tanning poses cancer risks ~ teenagers beware.  In an article posted in (New York Times.com) today, they wrote about indoor tanning and cancer risks.

TEQUESTA, Fla. — On their way home from an SAT tutoring session, the Van Dresser twins, Alexandra and Samantha, 17, popped into Tan Fever & Spa, a small family-owned salon tucked into a strip mall between a bar and a supermarket.  They wanted to get tan before the prom, and the salon was the perfect combination of fast and cheap: Twenty minutes in a tanning bed cost just $7.

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PTSD & Type 2 Diabetes: Is there a link?

In an article written today @ (Time.com Health) ~ Women with symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have a two-fold increased risk for type 2 diabetes, according to a new study.

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Obesity: Considered a Disability in Europe

(Reuters) – December 18, 2014 – Europe’s top court ruled on Thursday that obese people can be considered as disabled, but stopped short of saying that obesity was a condition that needed specific protection under European anti-discrimination laws.

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3 WOMEN……And Mental Illness


I had conversations with these three courageous women, while an in-patient on the psychiatric floor of a medical hospital a couple of years ago.  Mentioning my blog and my articles, they agreed for an informal interview as long as I didn’t use their real names.  I was able to converse with each woman separately where they shared their stories.

Note:  I was discharged earlier than any of these women, however, I revisited three weeks later to chat. 


Clara – Age (46)

Clara’s eyes well up as she recounts her story of anguish and to her, humiliation.  Both wrists are bandaged from a botched suicide attempt, and she stares downward at the floor as she speaks to me.  She has been in the hospital for over three weeks.

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The WashingtonTimes.com reported that research from Sweden has shed some light as to why women are more likely to suffer from depression, chronic pain (CPS) and fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) than men.  Also the same study discovered why women are prone to depression and mood swings from pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS) and post-partum depression.

Serotonin production, re-absorption and normal levels in many women are not sufficient and wreak havoc on the mind and bodies of those affected. The effect on female hormones is broadly significant. Serotonin, known as the ‘happy hormone,’ plays a significant role in pain management.

Chronic or clinical depression can be causation of chronic pain. Chronic pain can lead to chronic or clinical depression, so healthy levels of serotonin play a significant role in managing depression and chronic pain.

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After my diagnosis:  Anorexia, it was mandatory to attend four (2 hr.) Psych Eating Disorder groups to proceed with the program. The first group was a disaster.

Eight people were seated in a circle. (This was the group?  All young girls?).  First off, no one except me was over 20 and here I am in my late 50’s’; I felt awkward to say the least, also, each one was ‘pencil thin’.  Me, the fattest (140 lbs.), and sensing everyone thinking, “why is she here?”

I recognize this is an ED group, and do recall the intake interview phrase “you don’t have to look anorexic to have anorexia” however, it made it unpleasant.  I just couldn’t concentrate on the group’s subject: nutrition.

At break time, I conveyed my feelings to the group leader who said she would try and place me in another four week group with people around my own age.  I chose not to remain for the next hour and went home.

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