Welcome to QueerMentalHealth.org! We are a community-based support and resource site for queer people with mental health issues. We welcome anybody including (but by no means limited to) people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, two-spirited, intersexed, queer, questioning, and allies as well.
We are always looking for new writers! If you want a safe space to write about your mental health issues, you have come to the right place. You are welcome to join the Queer Mental Health Writers' Team. You may be credited or anonymous, with names or details modified to protect your privacy, and the privacy of others mentioned in your work. Check out the details at http://www.queermentalhealth.org/write/
May 24th is Schizophrenia Awareness Day. In honour of it, we’ve gone purple for the day! Here’s a song, written and performed by Coda Francis, about his experience with schizophrenia.
I hear sirens in my head,
As I’m wide awake, laying on my bed.
The air is thick with the smell of fear and hate.
Clean the carpet from the hypothetical blood stains.
I would like to welcome the newest member of our writing team, Emily Aviva Kapor. In her first post with us, she talks about how to be an ally to autistic people. Thanks for sharing with us, Emily!
I am autistic. The way I experience the world is different than the way most other people do. I haven’t written much about this publicly yet, and I am continuing to learn to be comfortable with being an autistic adult and moving through the world with this part of my identity. Here, though, is something I wrote two weeks ago for the so-called “Autism Awareness Day” and posted to Facebook; I thought I’d edit it slightly and share it more widely here in honor of the much better idea of Autism Acceptance Month.
I can’t imagine living past my 20′s. I don’t know why. Maybe its the eating disorder, the depression, the increased chance of being the victim of violent crime due to being black and queer.
Ever since I started developing my anxiety, I had several issues with getting good sleep – being unable to fall asleep for several hours, having nightmares and bad dreams almost every night, and/or being unable to stay awake during the morning. But it was a while into my eating disorder before I started having dreams influenced by it. The general template is this – I am faced with a huge array of my favorite binge foods (another thing my eating disorder has ruined is the concept of favorite foods – they became associated with the ravenous compulsion to binge and the self hatred which followed my indulgence and fueled my restriction… so when I’m asked ‘what’s your favorite food?’ I flinch).
It’s hard to believe 2 years have come and gone! This has been an eventful year. The growth of Queer Mental Health led to an opportunity for me to represent Queer Mental Health at the Trans Out Loud! panel, put on by the Callen-Lorde center in New York. On a personal note, I became fast [...]
Three years ago, when I FINALLY got some psychiatric help for an episode that was already almost a year old at that point (thanks for nothing), my then-psychiatrist diagnosed me with panic disorder/agoraphobia, OCD, Borderline Personality Disorder, depressive disorder, dissociative disorder, and Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified. Believe it or not, I was okay with that. It gave me something to hold onto, because I couldn’t make sense out of what was happening to me anymore. By the time I got in to see him, it was already too late. The damage was done. I will never fully recover. It’s not pessimism, just plain fact. Too much has happened to me, and rearranged my brain and how I perceive things.
Once upon a time, there was me. I was a drunk. I wanted to die. I couldn’t handle the way I was living anymore. So I went into a recovery house. I failed. I went to another one. Three years into sobriety I had a mental breakdown. Things have been fucked ever since. But through it all I’ve also had this eating disorder, see. So it’s not enough to try to get my life back from mental illness. I’ve got an eating disorder too.
My alcoholism reached a head in spring of 2013, brought to desperation by the death of my wife and my subsequent despair. By this point I was drinking from three pm onward everyday, first wine and then vodka, whiskey or rum. Nothing would bring her back, but I could annihilate myself. It was starting to dawn on me, though, that this was making me nothing but miserable. I wasn’t going anywhere or doing anything. I wasn’t socializing or running errands. I could barely cook. Being on disability, I wasn’t working. My full-time job was getting to the bottom of the bottle.
You probably know my name, my face, and my story. You may at some point looked up to me. That’s fine. I sought out a role as a leader in the community for a reason. I thought I could help, and people tell me I have succeeded. Researchers tell me their studies keep coming back with the same result; study participants keep saying the group that I somehow ended up leading saved their lives.
One of our writers, Brynn Tannehill, is taking part in a contest to win a scholarship to attend this year’s Netroots Progressive Conference. Brynn is a trans woman, a veteran, an activist and blogger, and a wife and mother. To automatically win a scholarship, she needs only to stay in the Top 5, but we’re [...]