Family

Coping with depression is hard. This poignant comic shows one woman's journey.

Zandt's comic essay shows just how debilitating depression can be and taking medication to cope with it doesn't make one a failure.

Deanna Zandt is a media technologist and author of "Share This! How You Will Change the World with Social Networking."

Take a quick look at her site's "about" page and try really hard to not be impressed.

She co-founded and runs a digital strategy company; has spoken at conferences including TEDxBerlin; is a frequent guest on news networks including MSNBC, CNN, and BBC Radio; and was the first recipient of the social media Maggie Award for Media Excellence from Planned Parenthood of America.


Screenshot via TEDx Talks/YouTube.

She's also dealt with depression for about 20 years.

For a long time, she was able to balance things through a routine that included meditation and yoga.

But then, two years ago, it stopped being enough.

She didn't know what was going on. And when she tried new methods, like acupuncture and craniosacral therapy, and those still weren't helping, she started to feel like a failure. That's when she decided to go to a doctor.

Her doctor diagnosed her with major depression. And he prescribed Prozac to help treat it.

GIF from "Glee."

This was not what Zandt wanted to hear. But even though she'd dealt with depression before — this time, it was different. And she needed help.

So she swallowed her pride ... and her new medication.

Slowly, she started to feel better.

Zandt knows that there are many people like her who never thought they'd take antidepressants. Stigma against mental health medication made her hesitant to take it at first. That's why she created a touching comic that takes us along her journey of coming to terms with it. She wants everyone to know that it's perfectly OK.

Stigma against mental health — and taking medication for it — is widespread.

Studies consistently show that it's one of the biggest barriers to getting help and staying on meds.

That's why efforts like Deanna's comic and the recent viral hashtag #MedicatedAndMighty are so important: they help break down barriers so that people feel freer to pursue the treatment they need to live healthier, happier lives.

Here's to healthier humans living on this planet more willingly and joyfully!

Joy

Man uses TikTok to offer 'dinner with dad' to any kid that needs one, even adult ones

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud.

Come for the food, stay for the wholesomeness.

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud. His TikTok channel is dedicated to giving people intimate conversations they might long to have with their own father, but can’t. The most popular is his “Dinner With Dad” segment.

The concept is simple: Clayton, aka Dad, always sets down two plates of food. He always tells you what’s for dinner. He always blesses the food. He always checks in with how you’re doing.

I stress the stability here, because as someone who grew up with a less-than-stable relationship with their parents, it stood out immediately. I found myself breathing a sigh of relief at Clayton’s consistency. I also noticed the immediate emotional connection created just by being asked, “How was your day?” According to relationship coach and couples counselor Don Olund, these two elements—stability and connection—are fundamental cravings that children have of their parents. Perhaps we never really stop needing it from them.


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All photos from Pilllsbury used with permission

Pillsbury is partnering with non profit, Operation Homefront, to provide housing for veterans

It’s the dream of many veterans: a safe and swift return to the security of home – to a place where time can be spent with family while becoming part of a community and creating new memories. With the partnership of non-profit Operation Homefront, Pillsbury is helping give military families the opportunity to do just that.

For many of our American soldiers, the dream of making a comfortable return to civilian life is often dashed by harsh realities. Pew Research Center reports that 44% of veterans who have served since Sept 11, 2001 noted having a difficult time re-adjusting. From re-entering into the workforce to finding healthcare services, returning to civilian life can be a harrowing transition. While serving in the military is incredibly stressful, it also provides routine, structure and purpose that is not easily replicated in civilian life. Couple this with a lack of helpful resources for veterans, and the hope for a brighter future can be easily derailed.


However, some companies and organizations are stepping in to show support and provide resources. Operation Homefront, an organization dedicated to helping military families transition back to civilian life, launched its Transitional Homes for Veterans (THV) Program in 2018. The program places veteran families in safe, secure, rent-free single-family homes for a period of two-to-three years while providing financial coaching and training to reduce debt, increase savings, and prepare for independent home ownership. Since the THV’s inception, Operation Homefront has defrayed more than $500K in mortgage costs to military families.

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TikTok about '80s childhood is a total Gen X flashback.

As a Gen X parent, it's weird to try to describe my childhood to my kids. We're the generation that didn't grow up with the internet or cell phones, yet are raising kids who have never known a world without them. That difference alone is enough to make our 1980s childhoods feel like a completely different planet, but there are other differences too that often get overlooked.

How do you explain the transition from the brown and orange aesthetic of the '70s to the dusty rose and forest green carpeting of the '80s if you didn't experience it? When I tell my kids there were smoking sections in restaurants and airplanes and ashtrays everywhere, they look horrified (and rightfully so—what were we thinking?!). The fact that we went places with our friends with no quick way to get ahold of our parents? Unbelievable.

One day I described the process of listening to the radio, waiting for my favorite song to come on so I could record it on my tape recorder, and how mad I would get when the deejay talked through the intro of the song until the lyrics started. My Spotify-spoiled kids didn't even understand half of the words I said.

And '80s hair? With the feathered bangs and the terrible perms and the crunchy hair spray? What, why and how?

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