Spring newsletter

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Chapter quarterly newsletter from the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance Chicago Loop Chapter contains informative information for those living with depression and bipolar disorder and family and friends supporting loved ones.

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Spring newsletter

  1. 1. Spring 2013 Volume 2 Issue 2 www.dbsachicagoloop.com peerwellness@gmail.com family.dbsa@gmail.comWEEKLY SUPPORT Spring a New AttitudeGROUPS Give support and get support.6:00 -7:30 P.M. The Chicago wind is blowing. Tulips are bright with color from rain. ThereTuesday are more sunny days than gray days. The boats are leaving the harbors andFamily & Friends heading out to Lake Michigan. Ah…spring in Chicago. It’s time to get out and come to the Chapter’s support group meetings. Why come out after aThursday long day? This is the place to make new friends ― friends with whom youLiving with can make plans to throw a Frisbee in Grant Park. Or try going to a freeDepression & Bipolar concert at Millennium Park. How about meeting for coffee? The best part ofDisorder attending a support group is finding out that you are not alone. DBSA support groups are all about peers helping peers. Whether you share orAll groups meet at listen, you will be encouraged and will hear about ways to take positive steps77 W. Washington St. in wellness for every day. And you may even find a bigger reward – as you4th Floor, Rm. 420 reach out to someone else, you take care of yourself.Chicago, IL Peer Focus Explore the National DBSA Conquering isolation one meeting Literature Rack at a time Get practical and valued tips for ~Rev. Cheryl Magrini, PhD, facilitator Family & Friends Living With Depression & Bipolar Disorder ~Phyllis Foxworth, facilitator Family &Facilitators FriendsRev. Cheryl Magrini The saying goes that you can count Education is central to supportingPhyllis Foxworth on one thing in Chicago – wait ten the emotional health of both loved minutes and the weather will one’s and family and friends. The change. Bring your umbrella and it DBSA brochure Helping a FriendBoard of Directors will be sunny. What doesn’t change or Family Member with is that a DBSA support group canRev. Cheryl Magrini, PhD Depression or Bipolar Disorder give you an anchor when challengesPresident provides a wealth of information come. on the disorder and the affect itMr. Peter Magrini may have on a loved one.Vice President, Treasurer Last month, I introduced the National DBSA’s strategic I have found much needed reliefMrs. Kathy Blake initiatives and promised that IDirector for my own fears and concerns would provide insight into these while reflecting on this material. initiatives in upcoming newsletters. Some new attitudes have takenRev. Dr. Anne Hampson I can’t think of a better place to root as a result.D. Min., LCPC begin than a discussion on peerProfessional Advisor focus. • My loved one’s illness is neither mine nor my loved one’s fault This initiative addresses the “why, • Mood disorders are a physical,Newsletter Editor where, when and how” to access treatable illness that affects aPhyllis Foxworth DBSA peer-to-peer support groups. person’s brain I encourage you to explore the Peer • I can’t make my loved one well, but I can offer support Please see President’s Address, page 2 Please see Explore DBSA page 4
  2. 2. Page 2 DBSA: Chicago Loop Chapter President’s Address cont’d. from page 1 Book ReviewsSupport and Education sections of the national Through the generous support of thewebsite at www.DBSAlliance.org. Peer Support Methodist Foundation Grants Program,includes a locator map that lists all the support our lending library thrives. If you have agroups in the United States. It lists the local book you want to review, please contact the editor at family.dbsa@gmail.comChapter website, its location and contactinformation for the coordinator. Living with Someone Who’s Living with Bipolar Disorder: A Practical Guide for Family, Friends,Education includes over 30 articles and and Coworkers by Chelsea Lowe and Bruce M.brochures with the most up-to-date information Cohen, M.D., Ph.D. 2010, Jossey-Basson depression and bipolar disorder. This book fills a valuable niche because it isWhen it seems like it is too much effort to go out, especially for Family and Friends. It is easy tothat’s just when you need to come to a support read, concise, and wide ranging.group. You are not alone. Listen, share, inspiresomeone, be educated or educate the group. Living with Someone … is divided into twoPeers walk the wellness trail together. sections. The first helps laypeople understand bipolar disorder in historical context and fromFrom one peer to another, be well, stay the current medical perspective. Topics includewell…Cheryl # how a bipolar brain works, how medicationsIn Our Own Words Sharing our journey is a central treat symptoms of bipolar disorder, and how to find a therapist. Part Two deals with the social tenant of our collective mission. From time to time we will share personal stories of and interpersonal issues Family and Friends inspiration, sorrow, compassion, and humor. need to consider in order to have a healthy If you would like to share your story please relationship with someone who has bipolar contact the editor at peerwellness@gmail.com disorder. A reader might want to start with theTaking That First Step: ~Kathan Murhpy~ practical advice offered in any chapter mostChicago is such a wonderful place. I was relevant to her/his current concerns, and thenable to find treatment here but socially I read the rest of the book as they are able. Eachwas deprived. Eventually the loneliness chapter of the book is short and self-contained,caught up with me. After a medication and the authors offer a list of further readingchange I had a manic episode and was (both websites and books) if you wanted to delvehospitalized. I was rediagnosed from major deeper into one of the topics. #depressive disorder to schizo affectivedisorder. I knew I had to make a change so Istarted to ask questions.A social worker told me about DBSA. WhenI was discharged from the hospital I forcedmyself to contact the group leader for theChicago Loop Chapter. After talking to her I Life stands before mehad a warm feeling and convinced myself togo. It was the best decision I have ever like an eternal springmade. I have attended DBSA for about two with new and brilliantyears and during that period I have hadzero hospitalizations. On top of that, I have colors.made really good friends who are peoplethat I can depend on. They are also very Carl Friedrich Gausstrustworthy and understanding. I dontknow where I would be if I didnt have thisgroup. I am truly blessed. #
  3. 3. DBSA: Chicago Loop Chapter Page 2 DBSA: Chicago Loop Chapter 3 PageBoard Member Kathy Blake’s Journey of Try these sleep aid tips from theDiscovery DBSA brochure Getting Better Sleep,Kathy works with children every day, helps What You Need to Knowparents guide learning, collaborates with • Go to bed and wake up at theteachers, and even dresses up for Halloween. She same time each dayis dedicated to the mission of the Chapter. MeetKathy Blake. • Relax for bed • Use natural or artificial light to help you avoidAs an Elementary Educator for fifteen years, I bright lightsthought I possessed significant experience andknowledge in dealing with young people. It took a • Get active earlier, at least three to six hourstragedy in my family to find out how little I did before bedknow in the area of mental illness. I encourage • Do a quiet activity instead of lying awake inyou and your family members not to wait, and to bededucate yourselves as much as you can. • Keep your bedroom temperature comfortable and dark enoughOvercoming the stigma of mental illness can bevery difficult. This is a common experience for • Take inventory by tracking your sleeppeople who have a mental health condition. My • Try not to nap during the day or nap no morefamily, friends and colleagues living with mental than thirty minutesillness experience this every day. The stigmashows itself when someone makes a comment or • Use your bed only for sleep or intimacy“thinks” there is something wrong with you.Helping to overcome the stigma of mental illness How Did You Sleep Last Night?in our society can occur when one is properly Did you know sleep habits can affect your well-being?educated. How much sleep do we need? Did you know thatPeople living with a mental illness can help infants sleep up to 16 hours a day? Teenagerschange stigma in our society by speaking out need nine hours. Adults need between five andabout their personal experiences. When doing so, ten hours ― seven or eight hours is ideal. Oldermyths about mental illness are exposed as just adults need the same but are less inclined tothat – myths. You make a difference when you sleep continuously or deeply.share your story. I applaud you for educating an Often one of the first triggers for a mood changeeducator. is either too much sleep, too little, restless sleepKathy Blake, Secretary, Board Member DBSA ChicagoLoop Chapter, Teacher-Emmons Dist. #33, Il # or intermittent sleep. Tracking sleep patterns is helpful for becoming aware of what could be contributing to fatigue, deep sleep “naps,” orChapter Happenings angry outbursts. The education brochure GettingHow do salad and popcorn go together? We Better Sleep, What You Need to Know, addressesmanaged to eat it all at our April movie night amount of sleep we need and the causes of sleepwhile watching the classic movie Back to the loss.Future. Part I with a young Michael J. Fox.Check out Parts II and III. What about mood changes? The brochure answers, “Sleeplessness, frequent nighttimeMeet these new peer facilitators: Kathan Murphy, waking, or sleeping too much can be symptoms ofCourtney Thompson, Jessica Schanberg and depression.” Further, “Sleeplessness can also be aMarsy Cohen. Thank you for being committed to symptom of bipolar disorder.”peers supporting peers. Please see Chapter Happenings page 4 Please see Sleep page 4
  4. 4. Page 4 DBSA: Chicago Loop Chapter Explore DBSA cont’d. from page 1 Chapter Happenings cont’d. from page 3But just how do we offer support? The brochure Thank you to David Jakubik for leading aprovides some very concrete suggestions. discussion on the documentary No Kidding Me2! by the actor Joe Pantoliano (The Sopranos,• Educate yourself about your loved one’s Memento, The Matrix) telling the story of his life illness, its symptoms and its treatment with major depression and the moving stories of• Encourage your loved one to seek treatment six others living with mental illness.• Explain to them that treatment is not personality-altering and can greatly help to Thank you to Hank Trenkle! Hank brought relieve symptoms home the message that getting out of the house• Offer to go along to healthcare appointments to volunteer not only fills a need but makes you• With permission, talk to your loved one’s feel better. Volunteer and you develop skills health care provider(s) that could even lead to a job. DBSA states “as much as possible The Tuesday night family and friends group has give unconditional love.” been exploring topics on brain chemistry as well as the concept of pleasure response reactions inThis can be an overwhelming call to action for the healthy brain vs the brain experiencinganyone, regardless of the mental health depressive disorders. These discussions assistchallenges in the family. So how can we begin family and friends in understanding societal andto attempt to live up to this suggestion? personal stigmas associated with mood disorders.Why not try a Family & Friends support group? Check out the National DBSA on YouTube inOur Tuesday night group is comprised of their Bipolar Disorder Educational Librarymembers supporting spouses, children, parents collection. You can view Cheryl Magrini’sand siblings who experience depression and interview on the effect stigma and disclosuremanic symptoms of the disorder. Using have in her life. Phyllis Foxworth shares hereducational materials, including those from insights on family support in a separateDBSA, we have found that providing mutual interview. Go to Bipolar Disorder Education Video to viewsupport to each other is a big boost to meeting the entire series.the challenge of unconditional love for bothourselves and our loved one. The brochure can If you are beginning to feel as though summerbe located at www.DBSAlliance.org # will never come, why not join us in sunny Miami for the National DBSA Conference June14 Sleep cont’d. from page 3 through 16. Our chapter will receive the RookieIt can be frustrating to have a sleep problem, Chapter of the Year Award for 2011 and ouryet feel helpless to do anything about it. very own Phyllis Foxworth will present aStress impacts sleep, especially causing session on how to form family and friendsinsomnia. A schedule that changes frequently support groups at the local chapter level. #can lead to sleep problems that impact mood. May is National Mental HealthThe best words of advice are, “If you have Awareness Monthtrouble sleeping, you are not alone. Don’t giveup. You don’t have to just live with your sleep “Im convinced that we can shapeproblem. More importantly, see your doctor to a different future for this countrydiscuss your sleep problem. You can feel as it relates to mental health andbetter and get the sleep you need.” This suicide.” David Satcher, Surgeon General andbrochure and additional educational material Assistant Secretary for Healthcan be found at www.DBSAlliance.org # ©Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance Chicago Loop Chapter. All rights reserved, 2013

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