Shaming my Food Stamps: EBT and SSDI
I grew up a white, middle-class, cisgendered, femme bisexual. These are the labels and privilege that I am willing to claim. When I reached 33 and went on SSDI, I went on food stamps. The transformation from Daddy’s Girl who just had to get another temp job to actual psychotic starving schizophrenic who had to take anti-anxiety medication to take out the trash was a process but has landed here. With me, today. Taking a handful of pills so that I can be brave enough to go use my EBT.
Tags: anxiety, ativan, auditory hallucinations, bisexual, cisgender, coping strategies, delusions, deserving, disability, EBT, Food Stamps, hallucinations, hearing voices, honesty, invisible disability, perception, poverty, privilege, psychosis, schizoaffective disorder, schizophrenia, shame, SSDI, stigma, visibiliity, voices1 comment
My Experience With Biphobia (Miss B)
When I finally came out as bisexual to myself and others, however, there was no end to the comments.
Tags: attraction, binary, biphobia, bisexual, bisexuality, coming out, confusion, discrimination, falling in love, fluid sexuality, gender, gender binary system, identity, love, respect, sexuality spectrum1 comment
My Experience With Anxiety and Depression (Kelsey)
In retrospect, I never was a child with high esteem for myself. I faced two distinct messages that I feel shaped my self-worth as a young adult: the media along with all the beautiful women I admired sent the message that to be a woman means I need to be beautiful and as a Catholic, I needed to be holy and a homosexual was not holy. So I grew up wanting to be beautiful and fearing being gay.
Tags: acceptance, anxiety, beauty, bisexual, blame, body image, bullying, Catholic shame, Catholicism, codepedancy, coming out, counselling, denial, depression, doubt, drugs, escapism, family support, feeling worthless, fitting in, homophobia, insomnia, internalized homophobia, isolation, lesbian, low self esteem, manageability, media portrayals, mood, mood disorder, motivation, overcompensation, panic attacks, parental approval, parental rejection, peer isolation, recovery, rejection, relapses, religious homophobia, religious upbringing, self-acceptance, self-esteem, self-harm, self-hatred, shame, suicidal thoughts, suicide, throwing up, women in media2 comments so far
Bipolar mania and the high femme: Adventures in Sephora
I was bipolar for ten years, and while rifling through the sexual identity coatrack I found I was most comfortable as a bisexual femme. In the gay bars of 2002 this was the look that got me most often ignored or disregarded. A decade later in a different city, I amped the look up to high femme, in a sense queering it, by making the femininity into camp, a form of drag or masquerade. With a blonde bouffant, pencil skirt, purple lipstick and platform heels, I could not actually be serious about being sexy for the boys, I scared them.
Tags: bipolar disorder, bisexual, butch, camp, counterparts, de-gaying, depression, femme, femme glamour, gay bars, gender presentation, genderqueer, high femme, identity, lesbian, lesbian identity, makeup, mania, overspending, poverty, queering, schizoaffective disorder, Sephora, sexual identity, shopping, socialization1 comment
Emily Carr, I Love You
I would like to welcome the newest member of our writing team, Winter Hammell. Her first post with QMH.org is an elegant story about pouring her feelings about mental illness into a single portrait.
i drew the #6 sable brush across the canvas with the steady hand of a cartographer, laying down a bold stroke of phthalo blue lightened with a tip of titanium white.
Holding the palette on my left thumb, clutching three brushes between my fingers, and one clenched in my teeth, i could taste the rich, luxurious oils. Drunk on the exotic perfume of linseed oil and rectified turpentine, i stroked and dabbed the canvas of gesso-primed Italian linen.
Tags: anger, art, artistic expression, bisexual, BPD, Claude Monet, colour, creativity, depression, diagnosis, drugs, ECT, Emily Carr, emotions, euphoria, fear, Georgia O'Keefe, hallucinations, Henri Matisse, hospitalization, identity, joy, love, mindfulness, pain, painters, painting, pleasure, portraits, sadness, stigma, transgender, transition, Vincent Van Gogh, wellness0 comments
Redesigning the Rollercoaster
Trigger warnings for discussions of drug addiction, alcoholism, sexual assault, suicide, and other possibly sensitive issues.
My experiences with mental health and sexuality have been just that. Rollercoasters. Rollercoasters of self discovery, of emotion, of fear and shame, of love and experience. Always traveling up and down throughout my life. Here’s the shortest story that I could condense these parts of my life into.
Tags: 12 steps, addiction, alcohol, alcoholism, BDSM, bipolar disorder, bisexual, body image, creativity, DBT, delusions, depression, drugs, escapism, family acceptance, gender, gender identity, genderqueer, getting clean, hallucinations, happiness, heroin, heternormativity, intersectionality, liberation, life, love, mania, mood swings, opiates, polyamoury, promiscuity, psychosis, queer, radical culture, recovery, self-hatred, self-injury, self-medication, sensitivity, sexual assault, street drugs, substance abuse, suicide, women0 comments
Coming Out and Breaking Down
After I sobered up, I started realizing pretty quickly that I was at least as attracted to women as I was to men. Not that I didn’t already know that, but now I knew it in a way that I could feel. It wasn’t about having loaded sex with anyone I could get my hands on anymore. It was about feeling things in my mind and body and relating to them.
Tags: acceptance, alcohol, anxiety, bisexual, coming out, coming out support, coming out to family, coming out to friends, coming out to parents, coming out to siblings, community, Dan Savage, discussing being queer, doubt, emotional awareness, emotional support, family, fear, fear of being naked, fear of sex, fears of coming out, feeling fake, fluid sexuality, fragmented identity, guilt, identity, internalized homophobia, lesbian, omnisexual, pansexual, promiscuity, psychosis, queer, Queer as Folk, queer books, queer media, religious fears, self-acceptance, self-care, self-harm, sex, shame, sober sex, sobriety, The L Word4 comments so far