My Dad’s a Goldfish – For John M

A powerful expression of love and respect from Mary Smith

My Dad Is A Goldfish

A friend has recently gone into a care home. He has a rare form of frontotemporal dementia. It is progressive and irreversible. The brain’s frontal lobe controls planning, judgment, emotional control, behaviour, inhibition and its temporal lobe affects language, along with emotional response and behaviour.

We have been friends for over fifty years – from when he used to walk me home from school carrying my books. We did our homework on the phone. I helped him with English, he helped me with French. We shared so much over those growing up years. Our lives went off in different directions but we always kept the connection – until very recently.

He can no longer take care of himself. He is only sixty three.

I owe him a great deal for the windows onto new worlds he opened for me. I’d like to think I opened some for him, too. This…

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Bipolar & Dementia

from Kitt O’Malley

Kitt O'Malley

I fear dementia. Both of my parents have dementia and live in a memory care community. They love one another and seem happy where they are now, but it took a while to make that happen. They wanted to maintain their independence. Understandable.

I fear dementia. Though I hope by avoiding alcohol and taking my bipolar medications, I can stave it off. (Alcohol is a neurotoxin, and I have a family history of alcoholism.)

Still, I fear a downward spiral. That fear I want to overcome. Face it. Stand up to bipolar disorder and dementia. Take care of my brain.

Even if my bipolar disorder progresses, even if I get dementia, I can still love and be loved, just as my parents still love and are loved.

Bipolar Disorder & Dementia Research

Analyzing six studies, researchers concluded  in “History of Bipolar Disorder and the Risk of Dementia: A Systematic Review…

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Our Broken Mental Health System: Just Released

Just Released
A victim of the greed that broke America’s Mental Health System

She said she was “Just released!”

I guess she was just released from an in-patient psych unit.

For all the snake pit hysteria anyone who thinks we in the early 21st Century do a more humane job of caring for our mentally ill than the barbarians of the 1950’s are in denial.

 Schizophrenia is the Alzheimer’s disease of the young.

Schizophrenia is easier to treat than Alzheimer’s Disease and when we treat it we benefit from the creative talents of people who are young enough to create lives for themselves.

This is not to diminish the pain of Alzheimer’s disease but to highlight how we should clinically care for people who have a medical illness that is just as devastating for patients and families as Alzheimer’s.

Mental Illness is not a choice.

Most of the choices we punish are not choices at all.

What we really punish is not goose stepping to the lie that the U.S. is a
nation of self-made people and that if you wish hard enough you can think
your way out of chronic illness.

“Just released!”

That’s what she said when she asked me to take her picture.

I assume that she told the judge or the shrinks that she
wouldn’t hurt herself or anyone else .

As if she would know.

I could see that she was internally preoccupied.

Internally preoccupied is shrink speak for hearing voices or
having hallucinations.

I took several shots of her and got this one just as she
was responding to her voices.

“Just released!”

How fucking sad.

RG 2015-2016