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Posts tagged “the skeptical mothers guide to insanity

There is not time for magical thinking; parenting with Bipolar 1 part 2

Until very recently I was scientifically illiterate despite 17 years of pretty decent education. I graduated high school with high honors taking awards in art and creativity- read basically voted most likely to go insane. I was bounced from “gifted” program to “advanced” program and then University hopped with marks all over the grade spectrum until the babies turned my brain to mush. Lucky me I am now barren and everybody is weaned and oh gosh, I have part of my brain back. The real problem was, I didn’t even realize how scientifically illiterate I was. And my journey to mental skillness has been longer because of it.

I loved science as a child but began to see the arts, poetry as the true places of the empathetic mind. That creativity and compassion were just not a part of science. Public school pretty much backed this up. My outside experiences with science were from my mother who just reinforced my notions that real scientists were basically just pyro-fetishists. I know not everybody was raised with explosions in the darkened hallway on Christmas Eve, but trust me, you wish you did.

Within the arts community I found people on the fringe, that I easily related to and that greatly appealed to me. I mostly knew how to act in public, thanks to the stable, loving, predictable life I grew up with. I was going mad with routine by high school though. My brain was on speed and there was no way to catch up. I burned through books and ideas like a wildfire. I adore my parents, even more as a parent myself for providing me with constant, unconditional love while I let my freak show fly. It’s as an adult; joking about my parents (mostly) fond reaction to outfits I wore from grades 7-12; everyday was halloween and the hair styles I chose- from bi-hawks to bright green chia pet spots to rainbow wigs- that I realize how awesome and supportive my parents are. I was just mind numbingly devastatingly bored. Mostly people who have known me while hypo manic would describe me as loud, fun, crazy. Even though I was stone cold sober, I seemed drunk, or high a lot of the time and this is pretty darn acceptable in the arts, a lot of the time. I felt at home.

However, I was not very self regulated and when the time came to learn new coping skills I naturally turned to the arts and alternative medicines. While I know creative expression lays at the heart of mental health for me there just were not the answers I needed on HOW to live. Lots of philosophy and grand advice about self forgiveness, and positive mental states. That just isn’t enough to get you well. I spent money I wish I hadn’t spent and time not engaged with reality that I can not get back wondering about mystical and magical things.

I was put in a Living with Bipolar 1 class that was 8 weeks long and I felt stigmatized and shaky walking through those doors. Opening new doors has opened a new life for me. I have been gorging myself on neuroscience reading and talks and dialectical behavioral therapy classes. I became interested in other forms of science as well, mostly thanks to a supremely pushy husband on the subject of scientific literacy. As I realized my tiny presence in our grand universe here on our pale blue dot I became increasingly grateful for my chance to make a positive impact on our tiny planet.

I’m now going to pursue becoming an Art Therapist, which seems like such a shockingly obvious fit. Who doesn’t want to do neuro science crafts that will pave down some positive new neuro highways?

It has been years of struggling to figure out how to live inside my own head in a settled and productive way. The struggle has been greatly eased by learning the skills of DBT. Emotional regulation, radical acceptance of reality, and mediation skills are tools we all need.

Current reading:

Thinking: Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. Pretty much essential reading for anyone wishing to make use of their human brain.

Quick briefing on DBT. It is CBT with meditation/awareness practices. I found found it so helpful in the “how” part of emotional regulation.


Cunningham on Wakefeild. Essential reading on MMR vaccine, in comic form!


If you have someone in your life you are responsible for vaccinating or not, this is critical knowledge.

Live Blood Cell Analysis – Scam?

A girlfriend’s question that my quick answer to  is yes.  Scam.  Why?

“Live blood analysis is an “unestablished diagnostic test”: its methods are not generally accepted in laboratory practice and its validity as a laboratory test has not yet been determined.[1] There is no scientific evidence for the validity of live blood analysis,[1] and it has been described as a pseudoscientific, bogus and fraudulent medical test.[2][3] Live blood testing has also been described as a fraudulent means of convincing a patient that they are ill and require treatment with dietary supplements.[4][5][6]

Well, my first quick google squirms with calling the bull-shit.

My second reeks with a sales pitch for supplements.

Big red flags for me are:

Many different health claims/possible illnesses or sensitives detected

Lots of science jargon that isn’t really relevant to the claims

Many testimonials – often featuring the writer returning to better health after following prescribed health food diets/supplement routines and losing a fair amount of weight.  Which is great- but having lost a total of 85! lbs myself now, I wonder if most of the success is related to a healthier lifestyle?  Many candida/yeast/gluten free diets eliminate/restrict many sugars (refined and unrefined) and from my rather extensive reading- that would do the trick re weight loss and healthier feelings.

I’m not going to point at any particular practitioner, just google Live Blood Cell Analysis.

Here is part of the original Ad in question

Live Blood Cell Analysis
Friday, September 30th

Simple Finger Stick
Immediate Results
Personalized Wellness Plan

Your Consultation:
Weight, Candida, Bacteria, Low Energy, Liver Stress, Free Radicals, Iron Deficiency, Digestive Problems, Memory Issues, Depression, Anxiety, Hypoglycemia, Immune System, Vitamin Deficiency

You will receive a clear understanding of why you feel the way you do.
You will receive a step-by-step program to restore your health and energy.
Your program will take in consideration your nutritional needs, hormonal tendencies, dietary tendencies and emotional tendencies.
You can save money and feel secure that your supplements are personalized for you.

Call  to schedule your appointment today.
*Space is limited*

Here are a few relevant links.

If you still are thinking-what’s the harm?  Realize that people are spending millions upon millions of dollars they don’t really have on treatments that don’t really work.  It can be dangerous to trust your or your child’s health to alternative medicine alone.  If it was scientifically backed it would just be called medicine.  Read this from Quack Watch:

“In 2008, Robert W. Bradford, C.R.B., Inc. (d/b/a American Biologics), C.R.B.’s chief operating officer Brigitte G. Bird, and John R. Toth, M.D. were charged with conspiring to violate federal food and drug laws and defraud individuals seeking medical care. The indictment states that Bradford, C.R.B., and Bird marketed bogus Lyme disease products and the Bradford Variable Projection Microscope, which was falsely claimed to diagnose the disease [14,15]. Toth is serving a prison sentence for manslaughter related to the death of a woman whom he falsely diagnosed with Lyme disease and treated with a dangerous intravenous product sold by American Biologics. In 2009, Carl E,. Haese, an unlicensed practitioner in New Mexico who used the BVRM to misdiagnose Lyme disease, was arrested for fraud [16].

If you encounter anyone who performs any type of live cell analysis, please report this to your state department of laboratories and send a copy of your notice to me at P.O. Box 1747, Allentown, PA 18105.”


My long answer is also yes.  This is a scam.  And a possibly dangerous one.