Blog For Mental Health 2013

I pledge my commitment to the Blog For Mental Health 2013 Project.  I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others.  By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health.  I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.

I learned about this campaign from the blog Pride In Madness yesterday. I think it’s a cool idea. At first I was a little unsure, because as much as I touch on the subject, I don’t think of this as a “mental health blog”, a “social justice blog”…it’s always been first and foremost an outlet and showcase for my creativity. But to be perfectly honest, my art, esoteric experiences, and lunacy have always been inexplicably intertwined. Call it duende, call it the alchemical crucible of my existence, call it pieces of my Great Work, it all is what it currently is.

So, from the mental health blog A Canvas of the Minds, here’s how it works:

1.) Take the pledge by copying and pasting the following into a post featuring “Blog for Mental Health 2013″.

I pledge my commitment to the Blog For Mental Health 2013 Project.  I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others.  By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health.  I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma. (I put it right at the top)

2.) Link back to the person who pledged you.

I’m not to clear what “pledging” is in this situation, but  A Canvas Of The Minds says that as they put out an open call, anyone can use them as the person who pledged them.

3.) Write a short biography of your mental health, and what this means to you.

Even as a child, I could recall instances of hearing things no one else could, of feeling “weighted down” even when nothing was wrong, or of being gripped with inexplicable fear and guilt even when there was no danger. Adults and other children alike of noted that I somehow seemed “different” in a way that implied it meant there was something wrong. I first self-harmed at age 7, with a piece of broken glass I found in the schoolyard, or else I’d just scratched my own skin with my fingernails, if I wasn’t fighting with some bully or other. Fast forward through various traumas I’ve already made mention of here or in my work, etc. and after being hospitalized for what I ambivalently approached as either a suicide attempt or an extra severe self-harm bout (the chips would fall where they may, I figured at the time) I was hospitalized and given my other experiences and behaviors, slapped with a diagnosis of schizo-affective disorder with depressive features. This came as a relief because it gave me something to work with, a name for this lifelong situation, a sense of validation to everyone who’d ever dismissed it as a “phase” or “melodrama” that I could “make up my mind to snap out of if I wanted to.” Of course, many of these people had various agendas of their own. However, it also came with the troubles of treatment plans from doctors who played fast and loose with their experimentations, especially in the city hospitals where someone of my financial class is relegated to (in other words, I’m poor.) Horrific medications with horrific side effects and questionable long term effects. And of course the social misunderstandings and stigmas that now, since the terrible tragedy at Sandy Hook elementary school, seem to have intensified to a frightening level.

4.) Pledge five others, and be sure to let them know!

I haven’t seen that many others just yet, but I’ll be coming back to this. For now the aforementioned Pride In Madness and A Canvas Of The Minds. I’ll be happy to talk about others as I stumble across them.

5.) And, as something novel for 2013:

As you may have noticed, Canvas does not keep an official blogroll, outside of links to our authors’ personal blogs.  For something new and special to introduce Blog For Mental Health 2013, and really build a sense of community — and show everyone how many of us there are, and how strong we are, coming together — we are launching a Blog For Mental Health 2013 Official Blogroll!  So, in addition to linking back to the person who pledged you, please include the link to this original post in your piece.  As this gets passed along, link back or click here and leave a comment containing the link to your pledge, and we will put you on our Blog For Mental Health 2013 Official Blogroll page!  Show the world our strength, show them our solidarity, show them what we are made of.  Take the Blog for Mental Health pledge and proudly display the badge on your blog!

P.S. – is saying “lunacy” a not-ok thing to do now? Because it sounds more poetic than “atypical perception”, and it has a moon/Yesod thing I’m really digging.


5 thoughts on “Blog For Mental Health 2013

  1. I just took the pledge myself and I’m visiting my comrades who are blogging for mental health.

    I was diagnosed with Bipolar in 1995 and have had many ups and downs, but am now blessed to enjoy relative stability. Blogging really helps.

    I look forward to reading more of your posts. Perhaps we can encourage each other.


  2. I’m glad you did this. Truth be told, I didn’t pledge last year, because I was so afraid of being pigeonholed as “just” a mental health blogger (I was a little messed up, too — irony). But while my personal blog is about so many things, they all have some relationship to my mental health: cause, effect, or passenger!

    As for “pledging”, perhaps we should have used the word “sponsor” instead, like when you want to get into some exclusive organization — technically you are the pledge, we are the sponsor. Except this isn’t exclusive, it’s wide open, and I’m really happy you took us at our word and ran with it on your own. 🙂

    Your story is really something. I’ve been doing this blogging thing for almost two years now, and you would think I would have developed a bit of a thicker skin, reading all the really intense life stories that I have. But it’s a good sign that I haven’t, I think, and that I feel each one in my heart as much as the first. In any event, I’m happy to be getting to know you.

    When you do come across more blogs, don’t forget to point them our way. This really isn’t a plea for free publicity on my part (okay, maybe a teeny, little bit), mostly I want to make sure everyone participating is placed on our blogroll, and shared through all our other social media (facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest). A community like this deserves all the support it can get!


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