Most recently published stories in Psyche.
Out there it’s a hot Australian summer, but in here it’s freezing. I’m in the staffroom at work, listening to Dave shout over the coffee grinder about the problem with kids these days. The air-conditioning is set to arctic freeze, but crew keep barging in and out through the door, bringing blasts of tropical humidity that confuse the thermostat and make it colder still. One crew stomp in, hot and dishevelled. They’ve been at a road accident where the bitumen melted onto their boots, and some people died. Another crew are laughing and talking about the hoarder who lost their false teeth down the back of the armchair but called the ambulance because he was certain he had swallowed them. Nobody’s seen the other crew since logon, they got sent straight out to a seizure and were last heard asking for police backup. An out-of-town crew roll in, bitching about being sent so far away to cover.
Symptoms of Me
As a young child before the age of five I did not know the meaning of love. I was neglected abused beaten down and treated like a dog. I had to grow up before I was supposed to.
Conversations, Companions, & Canvases
Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD) makes for a childhood of extreme irritability, anger, and frequent, intense temper outbursts. This lovely disorder was gifted to me around what society calls “the terrible twos.” Though, my irritability in a car led to more than just a normal toddler tantrum. One moment I would be the happiest kid in the world, enjoying the warmth of the sun and the gentle breeze on my skin playing pattycake with my friend on the lawn. The next moment, though--actually during an outburst I did not retain any memory of the events that followed so there’s not much description to be given other than when I awoke from my rage-slumber I found myself grounded and my poor friend nowhere to be found.
I have written this and want to share it with everyone, so many people suffer from anxiety and I want to help people understand it.
Needs Abraham Maslow (1906-1970), a psychologist, suggested a hierarchy of needs because he observed that problems usually stemmed from an inability to satisfy needs.
How Alcohol Affects Your Mental Health
I saw a Twitter thread recently asking people to comment on what they will give up this year to help their mental health. There were hundreds of answers ranging from food items to toxic relationships.
Like most millennials, I have been (1) conditioned by my family to prioritize security and (2) conditioned by society to please myself only when it doesn't displease others. I have “Do NOT rock the boat” tattooed on the inside of my brain. This is an important backdrop to the events of Summer 2020, when my life, like many others’, was a flat line with very few bumps. My bumps were: applying to Counseling Psychology PhD programs and living with a domineering, incessantly social roommate.
To Bee or Not to Bee
WARNING: Themes of suicide are discussed. I have a garden overgrown and full of wildflowers. Bees of all sorts visit it daily. They bounce from one flower to the next, occasionally bumping into a leaf or another bee that has gotten in their way. The sharp “BZZZ!” that follows as they swirl in the air amuses me as they attempt to regain their path. This is what fills the pages of my sketchbook: wildflowers from the garden and their devoted little bees. Nothing more than what I see.
Play for Healing
This is a story of finding joy through the creative act of healing. I grew up in a household where both the mother and the father suffered from a severe lack of Spiritual guidance, having never healed from their own childhood traumas. It filled me with everything from a sense of unworthiness and self-hate to the fear of finding out who I truly was because I thought I must be terrible inside.
How Mother's Day Makes Me Feel: Sharing my Grief and Sadness for the First Time
Sharing my grief and sadness for the first time is difficult and scary! Today is Mother’s Day and I’m sad and grieving. I’m sad because I don’t have my children. I should clarify, my children don’t live in my home and have never visited me here. I feel sad because Mother’s Day used to be a day that was celebrated with my children. They usually planned something special, you know, breakfast in bed, brunch, new flowers for the garden. I have these memories, as I’m sure other Mothers do as well.
Depression is Not Darkness to be Hidden
Hey guys, this is a personal post and not something I have ever shared on here before. But I think it’s time, in light of what has happened in the writing world.
Steering with Scissors: A social worker’s story
King Arthur has Excalibur, Thor has his hammer, Glenda has her wand and Harold has his purple crayon. My superpower is using creativity in my journey through life’s hills and valleys, its twists and turns. And I have my scissors to help me accomplish that.