The Current State of Veterans’ Mental Health Care

Sculptures of soldiers

For decades, service members have been placed in incredibly difficult situations domestically and internationally, both on the battleground and beyond.

Some veterans come home from these scenarios with the ability to move past suffering associated with what they’ve experienced, and continue building on their lives with minimal dysfunction to their health. For others, however, the traumatic events they have experienced create a dysfunction that requires professional care, which helps them transition more smoothly to civilian life.

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A Therapist’s Guide to Getting Unstuck

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Feeling “stuck” is an awful feeling. Stuck can quickly turn to feeling hopeless and helpless. When you can’t achieve the things that you want, the internal dialogue can quickly turn to criticism and self-blame. But, it doesn’t have to be that way.

If you’re looking to make some important changes in your life, here are some thoughts to get you unstuck.

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The Top Five Most Common Mental Illnesses

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The number of individuals experiencing mental illness around the world continues to grow. Characterized by what people experience in their mind, but sometimes involving physical symptoms, and their emotional well-being, the cause of many mental health disorders is yet to be discovered. Many of the symptoms are scientifically understood, however.

Below you’ll find a high-level overview of the most common mental illnesses as well as common treatments. The list is by no means exhaustive, but is meant to be a guide to frequently occurring conditions, some of which can present simultaneously.

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3 Reasons Why Comparing Your Mental Illness to Others is Damaging

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It is human nature to compare yourself to others, whether favorably or unfavorably. Favorable comparisons enhance self-esteem and make people feel better about their life circumstances, while continually comparing yourself negatively to others can have the opposite effect.

People compare themselves to others in all arenas of life. Mental health is no exception. Unfortunately, comparing your own mental health issues to those of your friends, family, colleagues, or celebrities can lead to a worsened emotional state. Here are three ways that people compare their mental illness to others’, and the negative effects of these comparisons.

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Trust Me, Having a Mental Illness Isn’t Fashionable

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I lived most of my life in shame of who I was — diagnosed with conditions I’d never share even with some of my closest friends. Labels I’d never dare think about wearing across my chest or around my neck out of embarrassment. But now, these same labels I avoided for years have become *deep inhale* A FASHION STATEMENT! *sharp exhale* What in the world has changed?

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My Childhood Experience in Therapy

teen boy couch therapist

While Talkspace is not available to people under 18-years-old, we recognize the importance of providing support for the parents of children with mental health issues.

I’m no stranger to therapy and mental health help. Long before I faced my own mental health issues, my mother passed down stories of my grandmother, who spent most of her life battling the demons of drug-induced psychosis and what, in retrospect, seems to have been borderline personality disorder.

Later, my mother also opened up about her own struggles with depression, anxiety, and the post-traumatic stress she carried from her abusive childhood. Likewise, my oldest sister, my father, and many of my family friends talked frankly about their issues.

Naturally, this has a downside: there’s nothing like being six-years-old and realizing everybody around you has some serious issues. But it also offers some benefits. Mainly, I didn’t have to deal with the stigma when the time came for me to seek help for my own problems.

As you’ll see, by the time I was facing true despair, I’d already had years of experience with mental health professionals. My story will enlighten you on the experience of seeing a therapist while you’re still growing up and what we can accomplish for our children. Continue reading My Childhood Experience in Therapy