re: self-diagnosis: also not everyone has access to doctors??
trans. queer. nonbinary. genderfluid femme. cat person. Jew. intersectional feminism, recovery, body positivity, writing, gender shit, cats.
anti-assimilationist, anti-capitalism, anti-racism, anti-ableism, anti-transmedicalism
^^^ That’s exactly what happened when I was officially diagnosed with MDD.
re: self-diagnosis: also not everyone has access to doctors??
You’re assuming 1. Medication is the only way to treat mental illnesses and 2. A person with mental illness cannot help/treat themselves. If both of those were correct, I might understand your position better.
But there are other problems as well. 1. Why would you seek treatment unless something was wrong? How would you know something was wrong unless you attempted self-diagnosis? 2. Doctors misdiagnose patients all the time. I was misdiagnosed as having OCD and then misdiagnosed as having unilateral bipolar disorder which DOESN’T EXIST. A doctor wanted to make up a disorder for me because my depression cycled between agitated and non-agitated and she wasn’t used to seeing someone with MDD who experienced both symptoms. When I had already known for two years that I had MDD. It would take another eight years before I would receive an official diagnosis for MDD.
Oh also, my doctors at the hospital program I was in refused to diagnose my eating disorder, because I was “obsessed” with getting a diagnosis. They didn’t give me a diagnosis to try to “treat my desire for a diagnosis.” I continue to have to tell drs I had an ED because it’s not on my charts, although I was hospitalized for it and in the program for three fucking months. But you wanna know how I got into the program? I called and told them I had an eating disorder.
I have never been diagnosed with BPD, but I’ve known I’ve had it since I was 15. Discovering I had BPD really helped me a lot, and I was able to recognize things about myself I wasn’t conscious of before realizing I had BPD. My self-diagnosis taught me more about myself, and helped me recognize some symptoms and thus helped me keep my BPD under control. It gave me self-awareness and I have been able to be mindful of my BPD symptoms and can now recognize when I go into a BPD episode. Could a psychologist have been able to teach me the feeling of slipping into a BPD episode?
I’ve told my therapist I know I have bpd and I believe I have autism. You know how she responded? That I’m very smart and capable and would probably be right about something like that, but that labels don’t matter and I shouldn’t attempt to get diagnosed. My doctor told me that, bc that’s what she was, my psychologist.
And I am on medication. An antipsychotic (mood stabilizer) has been added to my antidepressant. And I never even told the psychiatrist that I was delusional/can be delusional. And she never asked me. She spent twenty minutes with me max, not enough time for me to bring up BPD, psychosis, or ASD. Doctors don’t care. I’m just another crazy person to them, and they just prescribe what works for their other patients, or what company pays them more.
Exercise can be a wonderful mood booster, and can help diminish feelings of depression, anxiety, and stress. However, for many people with eating disorders, it can also be a trigger and a reminder of one’s illness.
I’ve spoken to many nutritionists, psychologists, and psychiatrists on how to approach exercise in recovery without feeding an exercise addiction or triggering eating disorder thoughts or behaviors.
- Don’t exercise for longer than an hour. Ever. The only acceptable reason for exercising longer than an hour is if you’re doing more than exercising, ie bike riding, hiking, or playing a sport. If you’re doing an activity for fun that can also count as exercise, be sure to take frequent breaks, don’t push yourself too hard, and make sure you enjoy yourself. Stop when you’re tired!
- Ideal exercise time is between 20-45 minutes, depending on intensity of exercise and frequency. Ideal exercise frequency is 3x a week. If you exercise once a week 45 minutes is ok, if you exercise 3x+ (never more than 5x) a week keep it at 20 minutes.
- Mix up your exercise. Don’t do any one thing for longer than 15 minutes. Try to include different types of exercise to work different parts of your body.
- Don’t count how much you do total. If you count for reps (for muscle work, 8-12 reps is ideal before getting tired, if you can’t do 8 lower the weight settings, if you can do more than 12 raise the weight setting), don’t count how many sets you do. If you need to count to make sure you aren’t doing too many, don’t exceed five sets for any one type of exercise.
- Avoid machines or exercises where you can count the calories burned. This can be triggering, and knowing/estimating calories burned does not aid health.
- Mix up aerobic and anaerobic exercises. In your 20-45 minutes, allot half of that time to cardio, and the other half to working on strengthening your muscles.
- Keep your strength training balanced. Don’t exercise your core more than you exercise your back, and likewise don’t exercise your legs more than you exercise your arms. The exercises need to be balanced to not throw your muscles out of balance and produce strain on other body parts that are strengthened less.
- Don’t weigh yourself or measure yourself. There’s no purpose to it. You’re exercising for health, and you can measure your health better in how you feel. Analyze your energy levels, your happiness, the way your body feels, how the exercises feel, rather than how your body looks.
- Don’t make up for lost time. Didn’t exercise for a month or two or eight? No worries, get back into it slowly. Don’t exceed your time limitations or push yourself harder. Don’t expect to be able to exercise at the same intensity you did before you stopped. Don’t try to work harder to catch up.
- Don’t exercise to make up for eating/bingeing. Exercise is not punishment, eating is not ever wrong. Exercise for health, exercise to treat yourself, exercise as self love.
- Don’t compare yourself to others while you exercise. This might mean you might need to exercise alone. Don’t worry about levels or intensities of other people exercising. You do not need to match them or beat them, even if you are able to. It’s not a competition.
- If exercise becomes triggering, or you begin using it as a coping mechanism, stop exercising. The benefits of exercise are not worth a relapse. Take a break. Refrain from any and all exercise. Start back up when you can be sure you’ll only use exercise for self love and growth.
If you’d like any tips on how to exercise or what exercises to do, especially exercises to do in your own home, feel free to message me and I’ll try to help you further.
Remember to be easy on yourself and to tell yourself positive affirmations. You’re a strong, capable, beautiful person, and you deserve health and happiness.
I’ve self-diagnosed my psychosis bc psychologists don’t believe I can be psychotic bc of how lucid and logical I am when they see me. I tell them I have delusional episodes but my delusions are all things that could be true so they don’t believe that I’m really delusional. I’ve had times where I honestly couldn’t tell what was happening, what was real, if I was real, if I was dreaming, if everything was an elaborate plot to manipulate and use me and render me incapable of functioning, etc. Once coming out of the delusional episodes, I can usually tell that I was at those points in time delusional. So um. It’s entirely possible to self-diagnose psychosis. This is one example, I’m sure there are thousands more. Psychologists aren’t always the best at diagnosis, they ignore a lot of symptoms if they don’t match what they believe a usual case of that symptom looks like, they’re judgmental and let their judgments cloud their view of their patients, etc. Just because no one has diagnosed my psychosis or my bpd doesn’t mean they don’t impact my life and influence my behaviors.