Chasing ‘Normal’ | Seeking Stability

The Oxford Dictionary defines recovery as “a return to a normal state of health, mind, or strength.” But what is a normal mental state? The biomedical model of mental illness has tried to convince us that binaries — normal and abnormal, stable and unstable, sane and insane — exist. Proponents of the recovery model reinforceContinue reading “Chasing ‘Normal’ | Seeking Stability”

Thinking with Audre Lorde: The Politics of Disclosure

Since beginning my PhD in Anthropology, I’ve wrestled with how to navigate the politics of disclosure vis-à-vis my psychiatric diagnosis. I’ve been playing it safe by (mostly) keeping that part of my identity to myself. For many people, especially those with other marginalized identities, holding their mental health diagnosis to their chest is a modeContinue reading “Thinking with Audre Lorde: The Politics of Disclosure”

Healing Journey: Peer Support

There are some episodes you barely notice and others that change your life forever. At the end of my last life-altering episode, I was married, pregnant, and a prospective PhD student at NYU. My entire world recalibrated. I lost beloved friendships. I accumulated a sizable amount of debt. I became a revolving door ER patientContinue reading “Healing Journey: Peer Support”

Coming Out (Again!)

Coming out. It wasn’t so difficult the first time. Before my last major manic depressive episode, I didn’t think my mental health diagnosis was anything to be ashamed of. I shared my diagnosis willingly with friends, family, first dates… I claimed my diagnosis on stages in front of audiences. I began speaking about it beforeContinue reading “Coming Out (Again!)”