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Why The Armed Forces Are Looking to Black Women For Answers: Suicide in the Military, Part I

“Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder.” ~ Arnold J. Toynbee Suicide is the ultimate expression of abandonment of hope, of an inability to see a better future, of the experience of agony too great to suffer a moment more.… Continue Reading

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Pediatric Bipolar: How’d We Get Here?

The pieces on pediatric bipolar will be written by my daughter, Rhona, a science writer who has played a seminal role in the blog since its birth. (That’s lucky for me, as, frankly, I still don’t know what that “html” tab does.)… Continue Reading

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A Cell Donation Day That Will Live in Infamy–Part II

So back to Henrietta Lacks and her overly hardy–some say virulent–cervical cancer cells. You may recall from last post that Ms. Lacks’ cells, entitled HeLa, were taken without her permission, and without recompense to the family. They were nabbed by one Dr.… Continue Reading

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A Cell Donation Day That Will Live in Infamy–Part I

Henrietta Lacks was young, poor, unassuming, African-American. From Virginia, she earned her living as a tobacco farmer, happily married, had five children, and died of cervical cancer at 31. But her story doesn’t end there. In pain and bleeding as the… Continue Reading

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Why DO The Texts Keep Getting Bigger?: DSM’s Tendency to Pathologize the Normal

Each subsequent publication of the DSM has gotten progressively larger. We can only imagine what sort of tote bag we’ll need for the upcoming DSM-5. Now, this doesn’t bother me for its own sake, really. I don’t go on family… Continue Reading

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Perish the Paranoid: Personality Disorders Pulverized in New Mental Health Manual

Some parts of life can be so simple. Take high school math. You had two intersecting lines, and, to be fancy, you called them ‘axes.’ To sound real mathematically sophisticated, you didn’t just call them ‘this axis’ and ‘that axis.’… Continue Reading

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Pathologizing Grief–Just For Starters: The DSM-5 and My Tripartite Expression of Displeasure, My Parting Words

Your clergy, your doctor–and your portfolio manager. Sounds like it has the makings for a cleaned-up version of an ethnic joke, I know, but it isn’t that. Instead, ask yourself: Who are the people in whom you want to have complete… Continue Reading

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Pathologizing Grief–Just For Starters: The DSM-5 and My Tripartite Expression of Displeasure, Part II

You cry into your pillow silently at night, reaching across to that empty expanse of the bed where, for 30 years, you’d always felt your partner’s hand reaching, in turn, for yours. Sleep eludes you due to the pain, and… Continue Reading

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Pathologizing Grief–Just For Starters: The DSM-5 and My Tripartite Expression of Displeasure, Getting Started

It’s a little-known fact, even to the seminar graduates, that,  before the powers that be let a mother actually give birth to her child, she and her partner have to attend a weekend seminar (and there are no exceptions here) in some hazy, nebulous… Continue Reading

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Beyond ‘Beyond Lithium’–Treament-Resistant Bipolar Maintenance, Or Not Staying Put, Part II

This may be shameful to admit, but I trust you’ll forgive me. As far as I could remember when I first came across it in my research on this topic, my familiarity with chromium came from Billy Joel’s “Allentown.” Remember?… Continue Reading

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Beyond ‘Beyond Lithium’–Treament-Resistant Bipolar Maintenance, Or Not Staying Put, Part I

Let’s take a walk down memory lane. It shouldn’t be hard–I provide all the memories, and, come to think of it, since you’re at your computer, you don’t really have to walk too far, either. I began a two-part post,… Continue Reading

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The Bipolar Road Less Traveled: Beyond Lithium, Part II

Who didn’t read “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost in some high school English class? Perhaps you aren’t all privy, as I am as an undergraduate English major, to certain fascinating facts about it– Frost said of his own… Continue Reading