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Be Well Blog

Improving Empathy

Sometimes, people are so caught up in their day-to-day lives that they lose a crucial part of themselves, something many people might call “empathy.” Empathy doesn’t just measure how much you care for others – it encapsulates an ability to navigate a variety of social cues. For example, being able to read someone’s facial expressions…

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Silenced through Sexual Assault: Part 3

In parts 1 and 2 of this blog post, I shared the story of my preteen and early adulthood experiences with sexual assault and how I began to heal from both. In this post, I finish the story. On March 31st, 2017, it was brought to my attention that the man who assaulted me as…

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Silenced through Sexual Assault: Part 2

In part 1 of this blog post, I shared the story of my preteen experiences with sexual assault and how I began to heal through connecting with a friend. Here I continue the story. My relationship with my mother became strained because of the secret I was keeping from her. I was ashamed that I…

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Silenced through Sexual Assault: Part 1

I was an extremely shy, yet creative child. In fact, the only times I spoke was when I wanted to share a new song that I’d written with my family, or to explain the intent behind my visual drawings and creations. I’ve never been one to speak unnecessarily, though there is a defining moment when…

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Edging Sexual Norms

Recently, I presented information on a group program, entitled “Edging Sexual Norms,” and a person thought this meant I was supporting pedophiles. It concerned me that this person was connecting an abusive sexual behavior such as pedophilia with the consensual non-normative sexuality of adults that is discussed in my program. I assume that others may…

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Painful Secrets: My Story of Sexual Assault

This is not something I talk about with people, but with all the media this subject has been getting, I feel more comfortable telling my story as well. When I was about 12, I was raped by a boy I liked. His house was by my bus stop, and every day after school I would…

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ONE LIFE – How Therapy Saved Me and My Transgender Son

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” –Mary Oliver, The Summer Day Over the last three years, I’ve begun to see my life as one long thru-hike, but with the wrong shoes. I imagine it to be a bit like hiking the Appalachian Trail in red…

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Birth: The Neglected Story

I love stories. Sometimes I think my job title should really be, “Professional Story Listener.” That’s why I can no longer keep quiet about something frustrating I’ve noticed. As a therapist who focuses on mothers’ mental health, I am pleased to see that women’s mood disorders are getting some well-deserved attention lately. Mood disorders affect…

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Sharing the Burden: A personal narrative from a mental healthcare provider

I am new to the provider role, but not new to the role of shouldering the continuous weight of my brothers and sisters who can no longer hold themselves up. I have spent the past 6 years serving the underserved, supporting the lost, the frightened, and the souls without hope. I’ve spent my time in…

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PTSD and VR – How Virtual Reality could change the way we treat Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

The future is now, apparently. When I first heard about the Oculus Rift, a Virtual Reality headset that was premiered on Kickstarter, it was like all of my childhood dreams had come true. Now, I would be able to play video games that felt like they were taking place around me. It’s been a few…

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Deception of Memory: How mental health shapes our memory, and vice versa

When I was a kid, I had a tendency to remember obscure trivia and unimportant information. I could basically quote half of the movies I liked to watch over and over again, and I loved to spout meaningless trivia that I had picked up from here or there. But when it came to my day-to-day,…

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Overcoming Barriers to Reaching Goals

The beginning of the year is a natural time of reflection and goal setting.  This can be a happy and motivating time for some, and a disappointing reminder of failure for others. Goal setting is not as easy at it seems to be, and people go year after year setting goals and not reaching them.…

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