The Moment Demi Lovato Decided She Didn’t ‘Want To Be Miserable Anymore’

Taken from the Huffington Post which is found   HERE.

See the complete 15 minute interview below.


Throughout the years, Demi Lovato has been candid talking about her past struggles with drug addiction, bulimia and diagnosis with bipolar disorder. In a recent interview, the singer opened up about one instance in particular that made her realize she needed to get help.

Lovato, who is spreading awareness about the mental illness, said that she had been “a couple years” out of inpatient treatment when her friends noticed that she had reached a new breaking point.

“They were sensing that I needed help and they came to me, and I… trust the people around me. When I saw what they were talking about, I thought, ‘You know what? It’s time for me to get help,'” she told HuffPost Live on Thursday. “I don’t want to be miserable anymore. I deserve to have a better life than this.”

Today, Lovato lives “well with bipolar disorder,” but she recalled how at age 15 or 16, she’d fall into crying bouts for reasons unbeknownst to her, a symptom of her bipolar disorder.

“I was looking out my tour bus window, I was living my dream, and I was just sitting there, looking out the window and crying, thinking, ‘Why am I crying? What’s wrong with me?'” she said.

But the “Heart Attack” singer concluded “there was nothing wrong with me” — and the same is true for others living with bipolar disorder. To learn more about symptoms and treatment, visit

Streams In The Desert: May 30th, 2015

And they were singing a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders. No one was able to learn the song except the one hundred and forty-four thousand who had been redeemed from the earth. Revelation 14:3
There are songs which can only be learned in the valley. No art can teach them; no rules of voice can make them perfectly sung. Their music is in the heart. They are songs of memory, of personal experience. They bring out their burden from the shadow of the past; they mount on the wings of yesterday.
St. John says that even in Heaven there will be a song that can only be fully sung by the sons of earth—the strain of redemption. Doubtless it is a song of triumph, a hymn of victory to the Christ who made us free. But the sense of triumph must come from the memory of the chain.
No angel, no archangel can sing it so sweetly as I can. To sing it as I sing it, they must pass through my exile, and this they cannot do. None can learn it but the children of the Cross.
And so, my soul, thou art receiving a music lesson from thy Father. Thou art being educated for the choir invisible. There are parts of the symphony that none can take but thee.
There are chords too minor for the angels. There may be heights in the symphony which are beyond the scale—heights which angels alone can reach; but there are depths which belong to thee, and can only be touched by thee.
Thy Father is training thee for the part the angels cannot sing; and the school is sorrow. I have heard many say that He sends sorrow to prove thee; nay, He sends sorrow to educate thee, to train thee for the choir invisible.
In the night He is preparing thy song. In the valley He is tuning thy voice. In the cloud He is deepening thy chords. In the rain He is sweetening thy melody. In the cold He is moulding thy expression. In the transition from hope to fear He is perfecting thy lights.
Despise not thy school of sorrow, O my soul; it will give thee a unique part in the universal song.
—George Matheson
“Is the midnight closing round you?
Are the shadows dark and long?
Ask Him to come close beside you,
And He’ll give you a new, sweet song.
He’ll give it and sing it with you;
And when weakness lets it down,
He’ll take up the broken cadence,
And blend it with His own.
“And many a rapturous minstrel
Among those sons of light,
Will say of His sweetest music
’I learned it in the night.’
And many a rolling anthem,
That fills the Father’s home,
Sobbed out its first rehearsal,
In the shade of a darkened room.”

More Songs From My Youth

1.  In My Life-  The Beatles

2.  Positively 4th Street-  Bob Dylan

3.  More Love-  Smokey Robinson & The Miracles

4.  I’m Just A Singer In A Rock & Roll Band-  The Moody Blues

5.  25 or 6 To 4-  Chicago

6.  Smoke On The Water-  Deep Purple

7.  Tiny Dancer-  Elton John

8.  Jump Into The Fire-  Harry Nilsson

9.  You Wear It Well-  Rod Stewart

10.  Time Has Come Today-  The Chambers Brothers

11.  Games People Play-  Joe South

12.  Ooh Child-  The Five Stairsteps

13.  Crystal Blue Persuasion-  Tommy James & The Shondells

14.  With God On Our Side-  Bob Dylan

Why Do So Many Children Self-Harm

More Than Coping

Taken from   iOl  United Kingdom  which can be found   HERE.

Chloe was just 12 when she started self-harming. “I was very quiet and an easy target for bullies. My brother was unwell, so I didn’t want to bother my parents, and I had very few friends. One day in class, I dug my nails into my arm to stop me crying, and I was surprised by how much the physical pain distracted me from the emotional pain. Before long, I was regularly scratching myself, deeper each time.”

The following year, on another particularly bad day, Chloe came home to find a knife on the kitchen side. “It felt almost instinctive to cut myself and afterwards, I felt so much better. By the time I was 15, I was using scissors or blades several times a day and never left home without something sharp.”

Chloe hid her scars, but…

View original post 1,295 more words

Hospice Care Decreases Depression Symptoms In Surviving Spouses, Study Finds

Taken from  Forbes  which is found  HERE.

Patients being placed in hospice care aren’t the only ones eligible to receive services. Family members can also benefit from the wide range of medical, spiritual and emotional resources being offered by a palliative care facility. A new study took a look at the spouses of seriously ill patients and found that hospice care can positively impact their mental health even after the passing of their loved one.

Published this week in JAMA Internal Medicine, a peer-reviewed medical journal, the report examined depressive symptoms in surviving spouses of patients with a variety of serious illnesses. Researchers learned that spouses of patients receiving hospice services for three or more days were less likely to become as depressed as spouses of patients who did not receive hospice care.

“We are seeing some benefits for surviving spouses in terms of a decrease in depressive symptoms after death relative to spouses of those who did not use hospice,” said Katherine Ornstein, PhD, professor of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. “These differences are even more substantial one year after death.”

Bereavement-related depression in surviving spouses is nothing out of the ordinary. ”This is obviously a normal reaction to the loss of a loved one and coping with widowhood,” she said.
The study analyzed data from 1,016 deceased patients and their surviving spouses. Researchers then monitored surviving spouses through bereavement up to two years after death. The National Institute on Aging, the National Palliative Care Research Center, the American Federation for Aging Research and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs supported the report, which used figures from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS), a national survey that samples Americans over the age of 50 every couple of years.

The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) estimated that 1.5 to 1.61 million patients received services from hospice in 2013. “There has been a substantial increase in hospice use in the past decade so that almost half of deaths are occurring in hospice,” Orstein said. “In particular, there is a substantial increase in hospice use for patients with serious illnesses other than cancer.”

She added: “In part this growth has occurred because of increased education to physicians and patients about the availability and benefits of hospice care and what it is and is not.”

The study didn’t pinpoint hospice services associated with improved symptoms, mainly due to the variety of components of hospice services. “For example, hospice is focused on symptom management and comfort care, which may relieve patient suffering and reduce depression for families. Hospice also includes services specially designed for caregivers, including bereavement counseling,” Orstein said.

“Advance care planning occurs in hospice setting which may also relive stress for families,” she said. “We simply do not know which component or components are most impactful.”

Pets Reduce Stress In Kids With Autism, Study Finds

Taken from  Disability Scoop which is found   HERE.

Animals may offer more than comfort for kids with autism, according to new research finding that pets can bring about physiological changes in those with the developmental disorder.

Children on the spectrum displayed a sharp drop in anxiety and social stress when playing with animals as compared to engaging in other activities whether independently or with their peers, the study found.

By contrast, typically-developing kids actually exhibited a rise in skin conductance levels — which were used to measure anxiety — when presented with animals, perhaps due to excitement, the researchers said in their findings published recently in the journal Developmental Psychobiology.

“Previous studies suggest that in the presence of companion animals, children with autism spectrum disorders function better socially,” said James Griffin of the National Institutes of Health’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, which helped fund the new research. “This study provides physiological evidence that the proximity of animals eases the stress that children with autism may experience in social situations.”

For the study, researchers looked at 114 children ages 5 to 12, a third of whom had autism. All of the kids wore a device on their wrist to measure skin conductance, or the level of charge that passes through the skin. Readings from the device can suggest how a person is feeling since the pace of charge increases when people feel excited or anxious, for example.

Measurements were taken while the children read a book silently and again when the kids were asked to read aloud for two peers. Then, researchers monitored the children while they played during 10 minutes of free time and finally, during 10 minutes of supervised play with two guinea pigs.

Skin conductance levels for the children with autism were higher than for their typically-developing peers in every circumstance except when the guinea pigs were present, the study found.

Marguerite O’Haire, a researcher at Purdue University who led the study, said that while the findings are meaningful, she does not recommend that parents immediately acquire pets for their children with autism. Rather, she said the study suggests that animals may “play a part in interventions seeking to help children with autism develop their social skills.”


What Not to Say to Someone With Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Taken from  U.S. News  which is found   HERE.

Maybe you have a roommate who constantly worries that she left her hair straightener turned on – even if she remembers unplugging it earlier that morning. Perhaps your spouse is so fixated on keeping a section of the house clean – say, a countertop or swath of floor – that he or she ignores an overflowing sink or a full trash can. You might have a friend who likes to count things – mailboxes, cracks in the sidewalk, lampposts. Or maybe your father confided in you that he experiences intrusive and disturbing thoughts he can’t cast aside no matter how hard he tries.

There’s a good chance these people have obsessive-compulsive disorder, or OCD – a brain-behavior disorder that affects approximately 2 to 3 percent of the population, according to Jeff Szymanski, a clinical psychologist and executive director of the International OCD Foundation. And if you don’t know much about OCD, the comments you offer could come across as hurtful, ignorant or dismissive instead of curious, helpful or empathetic.

Here are some phrases to think twice about saying to a friend, family member or acquaintance with OCD:

“Don’t worry, I’m kind of OCD sometimes, too.”

Maybe you’ve never been diagnosed with OCD – but you can, on some level, relate to constantly dwelling on a certain thought, or needing to make sure everything around you is “just so.” Being obsessive – or compulsive – about things is normal, Szymanski says. However, being prone to analyzing things or being fastidious about your surroundings is not OCD – it’s just your personality.

According to experts, OCD refers to frequently upsetting thoughts, or obsessions, that cause extreme anxiety in an individual – who then tries to relieve this anxiety by engaging in rituals or behaviors known as compulsions. Everyone experiences obsessive thinking and engages in compulsive behavior to an extent. But folks with OCD experience it so intensely they feel mentally and/or physically uncomfortable. They often engage in rituals with the goal of making unwanted thoughts or feelings go away – not because they enjoy performing them – and as much as they’d like to, they can’t always control these actions.

“OCD is when these thoughts, feelings and behaviors occur to the point where they’re interfering with a person’s ability to participate in day-to-day activity,” Szymanski says. “You can’t get to work, you can’t sleep and you can’t engage in relationships the way you’d like to.”

So if you’re cleaning your house for hours at a time because you like doing it, you don’t have OCD. But if you’re cleaning because you’re trying to obliterate bad thoughts and feelings, you might. And whether you’re likening your own behavior to OCD as a way to empathize with someone else or because you’re simply joking about your own quirks, it can come across as insensitive and trivializing to those who actually have the disorder, says Wilson Freeman, a 31-year-old photographer from Baltimore who has OCD.

“If you, yourself, do not have OCD, try not to compare your own experiences to the disorder,” Freeman says. “It sounds well-meaning to say ‘I know what it’s like,’ but unless you have the disorder, you don’t know what it’s like.”

“You don’t look like you have OCD.”

“Someone with OCD looks very normal on the outside – and might be in every other way,” says Dr. Wayne Goodman, a psychiatrist and chief of the division of Tics, OCD and Related Disorders at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. “People think, ‘How could someone who seems so rational and normal inside and out be plagued by all these ridiculous, obsessive thoughts and behaviors?”

Anyone – male or female, young, adolescent or elderly – can have OCD. And just because someone is high functioning or successful doesn’t mean he or she is immune.

“Want to come over and clean my house?”

One misconception about OCD is that those who have it are obsessed with cleanliness and germs, and engage in compulsions such as cleaning or hand washing. But there are many other obsessions and compulsions.

Scrupulosity, for example, is a form of OCD in which individuals to become hyper-vigilant toward religious or moral practices, obligations and rituals. As a result, they’ll exaggerate a sacrament or pray multiple times a day. Some people with OCD experience unwanted thoughts that are occasionally sexual and violent. Such thoughts don’t mean the people who have them are deviants, or that they’ll act on them. But they can cause great distress, and prompt those who have them to avoid potentially triggering situations or engage in other compulsions they believe will undo harm – say, mentally reviewing an event or performing a task to make everything feel “right.”

Other typical obsessions range from perfectionism to losing control in some way to causing harm to oneself or others. Common compulsions include counting, touching things or oneself in a repetitive manner or checking on things that might appear inconsequential or minor but nevertheless inspire great worry: Was that bump I hit in the road while driving actually a person? Did I leave the stove on? These ruminations can prevent people from leaving their houses for days at a time, says Dr. Michael Jenike, founder and medical director of the OCD Institute at McLean Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts. In the most severe cases, they can trigger depression or suicidal tendencies.

Even if someone with OCD is focused on cleanliness, they’ll often become so focused on one section of a house – say, a surface – that the rest will appear a mess. Or the sight of a mess will create such anxiety that they won’t clean it up, Freeman says.

“If you walked into my house, you’d never think I had OCD,” says Freeman, whose compulsive behaviors revolve around cleaning sticky surfaces or dirty hands. “The irony is that many people with OCD … are fairly messy because we get so overwhelmed by things, it’s easy to avoid them if we don’t feel like tackling it. This creates a feedback loop that is, in itself, triggering – which makes us even less likely to deal with it.”

“You’re being irrational.”

If you have OCD, you likely know the thoughts you’re experiencing – or behaviors you’re engaging in – are irrational. But that doesn’t make them feel any less real, says Grae, a 23-year-old graduate student with OCD who declined to provide her last name.

“It’s hard to turn away from it,” she says. “It’s probably something you don’t like to do, but it’s something that you have to do. Until you do it, maybe you won’t be able to stop thinking about it, or maybe you think that something bad will happen. Maybe the thoughts and feelings hurt you physically, or make you feel physically ill.”

“Why can’t you just stop?”

Many people with OCD are self-conscious about their behaviors and able to hide them from friends and family members. They’ll wait until they’re in the privacy of their own home to engage in repetitive rituals or behaviors. Or they’ll go on vacation, and suddenly their symptoms vanish once they’re removed from thestresses of everyday life. So why, friends and family members often ask, can’t they just make themselves stop?

It’s not that easy, Szymanski says. “Thought-suppression strategies have a paradoxical effect for all of us,” he says. “We experience more of that thought, and it increases in frequency and intensity.”

“It’s all in your head.”

Experts don’t know exactly what causes OCD. They do, however, say there’s strong evidence that it’s a brain-based disease. Studies indicate there might be a genetic predisposition for OCD, and fMRIs suggest people with OCD often have brain abnormalities, Jenike says. Infections and head trauma are also tied to the development of OCD, as are life factors and environmental circumstances. Since OCD is most likely biologically based, don’t accuse someone of imagining it or making it up.

“It’s just a quirk/tic. It isn’t serious.”

“Many people think OCD is trivial or frivolous,” Goodman says. “Some of the symptoms might seem like an exaggeration of normal quirks, so it’s easy not to take it seriously. And often, patients in support groups try to keep a sense of humor about the disorder. But the symptoms, while seeming odd from the outside, are very serious to the person they afflict. It consumes their life, controls what they do and interferes with their ability to work or have a normal social life.”

Many patients, Goodman says, have treatment-resistant OCD and have exhausted myriad conventional treatments, including medication or behavioral therapy. “They’re quite ill,” he says.

“Just relax.”

“I had someone once tell me to try yoga” to alleviate my symptoms, recalls Taylor Miller, a 25-year-old graduate student from Newark, Delaware, who was recently diagnosed with OCD. “I did go to yoga, and I thought ‘OK, this is cool, but it isn’t going to fix my life.'”

While relaxation techniques can help calm the anxiety that stems from obsessive thoughts, they won’t treat OCD symptoms or make them go away, experts say. So don’t inform someone that taking up jogging or meditation will help cure his or her disorder.

“Relaxation is very important, but doesn’t take away the fact that my brain just attacks me,” Miller says. “There’s no amount of breathing techniques or mindfulness that’s going to take away from the fact that my brain wants to fixate on a typo I made in a paper.”

“You just need to learn to live with it.”

If you have OCD, you should simply get used to it and move on, right? Not necessarily. There are treatments available, and telling someone to “just accept” the disorder can both prolong their suffering and prevent them from seeking help, experts say. In fact, according to the International OCD Foundation, some estimates indicate it can take up to 14 to 17 years from the onset of symptoms to get an appropriate diagnosis and treatment.

Various medications can alleviate the symptoms of OCD, as can therapy. Clinicians use a form of cognitive behavioral therapy called exposure and response prevention therapy to treat anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder and phobias. Therapists ask people with OCD to put themselves in situations that trigger their obsessions and feelings – but to refrain from engaging in the compulsive behavior. Once they learn to leave the thoughts or feelings alone, they discover that they dissipate on their own.

Of course, not everyone responds – or wants to adhere – to the same treatments. But the small act of getting help, no matter what form it takes, can be life-changing, says Miller, who was recently prescribed medication for her OCD. She’d never sought treatment for her condition because “I was rather high functioning,” she says. “I thought, ‘Well, there are people who are really struggling.'”

But soon after starting her medication, “I noticed a night and day difference,” Miller says. “I used to have to clean off and dust my desk before I would work each day. I hadn’t really noticed that this was a ritual when I was doing it. But [recently] I was able to just sit down and write a paper. I didn’t have to move anything or dust or clean. It sounds like a little thing, but that’s a lot of time I’m saving now.”