Juliette V.

@juliette-v | contributor
Hi, I'm Juliette. I'm the Mental Health Editor here at The Mighty. I joined The Mighty because I believe storytelling is a powerful tool in raising awareness about mental health and trauma. I'm inspired every day by the brave vulnerability of our community. #MightyTogether
Juliette V.

Why Does Depression Make Me Feel Irritable?

Medically reviewed by psychiatrist and Timberline Knolls medical director Johnny Williamson, MD. It might not seem like a big deal at first. So you snapped at your partner for forgetting to unload the dishwasher. It’s not your typical behavior, but you were really stressed. But as the weeks go on, you realize your fuse is getting shorter and shorter and you’re lashing out more and more at the people you love. In each of the moments you lash out, your anger feels totally justified. But after reflecting on your actions, you realized you wouldn’t have reacted like that normally. Sure you’re probably feeling more emotions than usual, but you’re also plagued by internal questions like, “Why am I reacting so strongly to this?” If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. Sometimes when we’re feeling especially irritated and angry, our behavior is actually related to an underlying mental health issue like depression. Though we often hear things like “depression is anger turned inward,” the reality is depression can very much turn outward too. Irritability is a common symptom of depression, and it’s time we talked about it. If you struggle with depression-related irritability, here’s what you need to know. Why Does Depression Make Me Feel Irritable? Depression is a mood disorder characterized by persistent feelings of hopelessness and loss of interest in activities you would normally enjoy. Though we typically associate depression with sadness, irritability is a common symptom of depression — especially in children and adolescents. Irritability is when someone experiences reduced control over their temper, often leading to frustrated or angry outbursts. While we all experience irritability at some point or another, folks struggling with depression may notice their patience go down and their tendency to get frustrated go up. “Symptoms of depression like appetite changes, trouble sleeping to trouble concentrating can contribute to someone’s overall vulnerability to irritability and stress,” Jen Douglas, Ph.D., clinical assistant professor at Stanford University School of Medicine, told The Mighty. “The negative thinking patterns we often see in depression such as exaggerating the negative, minimizing the positive and jumping to conclusions can also lead to irritability and frustration with the stressors around us.” Mighty contributor Bailey Morgan knows what it’s like to struggle with irritability due to depression. In her piece, “6 Signs of Depression We Need to Talk About,” she shared: I have always noticed that before I get depressed, I always get extremely irritable. This is something not a lot of people want to talk about because they often don’t want people to judge them for having an attitude or short temper. However, it is perfectly OK to have your irritable days. In addition to depression, irritability is a common symptom of many different health conditions. Some common ones can include (but aren’t limited to): Anxiety Dementia Bipolar disorder (especially as a symptom of mania) Borderline personality disorder (BPD) Signs of Depression-Related Irritability Irritability presents differently for everyone people, but some classic depression-driven irritability behaviors may include: Feeling easily annoyed by “small” things that wouldn’t bother you normally Impatience Lashing out or “snapping” at others Erratic behavior (like aggressive driving or hanging up on someone) Passive-aggressive speech or behavior Though as a society we often view anger and irritability negatively, it’s important to remember they aren’t “bad.” Emotions aren’t good or bad, they just are. What’s important is how you respond to your emotions. It’s possible to feel anger and not lash out in a way that damages your relationships. “Sometimes irritability is an understandable response to a frustrating situation,” Karen Lee Swartz, M.D., associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Johns Hopkins, told The Mighty. “Sometimes it’s way out of proportion because you’re also anxious or you’re also depressed.” Though the experience of irritability is common, if you experience persistent, prolonged and unprovoked irritability it can be a red flag that it’s time to get help. For example, if your angry outbursts are getting in the way of your ability to function and maintain strong relationships, there’s a good chance you would benefit from professional intervention. “We are all different people and all have a different degree of natural irritability… [even] when we’re feeling our best,” Dr. Swartz said. “But when someone has a change, and suddenly they’re more irritable, or they’re much more difficult to deal with, there’s probably something serious going on. Then it’s important to help that person get an evaluation and get whatever help they need.” How Do I Manage Irritability Due to Depression? When you’re struggling with any kind of mental health issue, it can be easy to become discouraged. And while your feelings are always valid (depression can be emotionally exhausting!), we want you to know there is help available. Below, we’ve listed four tips for managing irritability related to depression: 1. Seek Professional Support As with most mental health struggles that feel out of our control, one of the best things you can do for yourself (and your relationships!) is to seek out the help you need. To find a therapist in your area, check out this therapist finder tool. “Anxiety disorders and depression are both very treatable… Irritability is usually a symptom when the illness is causing you more trouble [than usual], Dr. Swartz said, adding: With appropriate support and treatment, the illness can get better and your irritability can get back under control. It’s not like you’re ‘broken.’ It’s not like having had irritability when you’re depressed means that you’re irritable for the rest of your life — it just means you’re really irritable when you’re very anxious or very depressed. In some cases, medication may be useful for treating depression. If you’re curious about whether medication would be a good fit for you, talk to your doctor. Please consult a doctor before starting or stopping any medication. 2. Practice Mindfulness It’s no secret that mindfulness can help us maintain better mental health. But mindfulness doesn’t just mean meditation — it can simply refer to awareness of your sensations in the present moment. Being aware of your bodily sensations can really help folks struggling with irritability. For example, you might feel your skin heat up or notice your breathing pick up pace when you’re feeling anxious or irritable. When you start to recognize these sensations, you can take a step back and calm yourself down. Learning to recognize your emotions can be challenging. If this is a common struggle for you, we encourage you to check out this helpful emotion chart. 3. Ask Your Friends for Support and Accountability If you’re struggling to identify when your irritability or anger is sensible and when it’s a little over-the-top, you’re not alone. Turn to your trusted loved ones to give you a heads up when you’re getting a little hot-headed. “One thing people can do in their closest relationships is to give their partner or their best friend or their parents permission to say, ‘That was too much,’” Dr. Swartz said, explaining that this gives the person struggling with irritability the opportunity to apologize to the person they hurt, as well as tell their treatment team they’ve been experiencing a resurgence of irritability. There is no shame in needing help to manage your mental health symptoms. Lean on a mental health professional, as well as loved ones, to help you when things get through. 4. Act According to Your Values Like most emotions, you can’t really eliminate anger or irritability from your life — but you can learn to manage it and live well with it. Remember, there’s nothing wrong with feeling irritable sometimes, but if your responses to feelings of irritability are hurting your relationships, it might be worth assessing what you can do to curb your reactions. In the heat of the moment, it can be tempting (and even might feel good!) to act out on your irritable or angry feelings. But a pattern of irritable behavior can do more harm than good in your life. In a calm moment, think about how you would ideally like to react to stressful situations. “Think about the ‘me’ you want to be,”  Jill Stoddard, Ph.D., author of “Be Mighty: A Woman’s Guide to Liberation from Anxiety, Worry, and Stress Using Mindfulness and Acceptance, told The Mighty, adding: In other words, when the guy in front of you at the red light takes an extra few seconds to hit the gas when the light turns green, do you want to be the person who lays on the horn, curses, flips him off or peels out to drive around him? Or do you want to be a person who chooses to act with patience, kindness and compassion? Even when we aren’t feeling particularly charitable or patient, we can still act charitably and patiently. Feeling irritable doesn’t mean we automatically have to act on those feelings. Though it can be difficult at first, you can choose to act in a way that coincides with the person you want to be. As you work on your depression recovery, have patience and compassion for yourself. Slip ups are par for the course and expected! The important thing is to keep working toward recovery one day at a time.

Juliette V.

Why Does Anxiety Make Me Feel So Irritable?

Medically reviewed by psychiatrist and Timberline Knolls medical director Johnny Williamson, MD. Have you ever noticed your frustration flare up when you’re stressed? Maybe during an especially busy time at work, you found yourself snapping at a coworker for asking a simple question. Maybe while trying to care for a sick relative, you realized you were less than patient with the pharmacist on the phone. Or maybe when you were already running late and a guy cut you off on the freeway, your frustration just stayed with you for the rest of the day. It’s common to feel agitated in stressful times. But for folks with anxiety disorders (who often live with heightened stress and alertness), irritability can show up more often and can take a little longer to dissipate. Why Does Anxiety Make Me So Irritable? There are several types of anxiety disorders , ranging from generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), to panic disorder, to different phobias. Though these types of anxiety can manifest in different ways, they all involve experiencing intense worry or fear that can get in the way of daily functioning. Common symptoms of anxiety disorders include : Feeling on-edge or restless Panic attacks Having trouble falling or staying asleep Heart palpitations Sweating or trembling Avoiding objects or situations that trigger anxiety Irritability Though we don’t often talk about irritability (an emotional experience leading to agitation and reduced control over our tempers) in the context of anxiety, it’s actually a pretty common symptom. Anxiety can trigger the body’s fight, flight, freeze or fawn response modes even if we’re not actually in danger. So next time you find yourself lashing out in irritability or anger due to anxiety, say hello to your fight response! “Irritability is a very understandable difficulty for individuals with anxiety,” Jen Douglas, Ph.D. , clinical assistant professor at Stanford University School of Medicine, told The Mighty, adding: Anxiety and worry can take up a large portion of our head space if we’re dealing with an anxiety disorder. This type of overthinking , preparing for the worst-case scenario and constant list-making can be really exhausting. And when people are exhausted by those mental to-do lists, they end up feeling depleted, and then they’re more likely to feel irritable. Anxiety results in more frequent exposure to negative thoughts, feelings and emotions.  Cumulatively, this reduces tolerance of the stresses of everyday life. This loss of tolerance can lead to negative reactions to stress which often include irritability and a further increase in anxiety. Signs of Anxiety-Related Irritability Irritability and anger look different for everyone, but according to Jill Stoddard, Ph.D., author of “ Be Mighty: A Woman’s Guide to Liberation from Anxiety, Worry and Stress Using Mindfulness and Acceptance ,” some classic anxiety-driven irritability behaviors can include: Impatience Getting easily annoyed by or overreacting to small things you wouldn’t otherwise feel annoyed by “Snapping” at people Erratic behavior (like weaving in and out of traffic or hanging up on someone) Being passive aggressive One of the key components of anxiety-related irritability is that it can cause you to react in a way that is disproportionate to what the situation warrants. This is something Mighty contributor Heidi D. wrote about in her piece, “ When Anxiety Presents as Anger, Not Fear ”: Anxiety presents in lots of ways that may not be obvious. Unfortunately for me, most of the time mine presents as anger. What does that mean? It means when I feel anxious on the inside, it manifests itself on the outside as me being pissed off. So when I was a kid and my sister was comforted for being upset, I was scolded for losing my temper. Not that I hold anything against my parents, because I really was a little shit. Back then my anger-anxiety looked like me losing my temper all the time. When I lost a video game, I would throw the controller. When my sister teased me, I would hit her. Tiny triggers were huge triggers, and my level of anger-anxiety varied from moment to moment. If you can relate to what Heidi shared about “tiny” triggers becoming huge ones, you’re not alone. While anxiety is often the culprit of our short fuses, it’s important to mention irritability is a common symptom of many different health conditions such as dementia, bipolar disorder (especially in times of mania), depression and borderline personality disorder (BPD) . “We are all different people and all have a different degree of natural irritability… [even] when we’re feeling our best,” Karen Lee Swartz, M.D. , associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Johns Hopkins, told The Mighty. “But when someone has a change, and suddenly they’re more irritable, or they’re much more difficult to deal with, there’s probably something serious going on. Then it’s important to help that person get an evaluation and get whatever help they need.” How Do I Manage Irritability Due to Anxiety? When it comes to managing anxiety-related irritability, here’s the good news: No, you’re not a jerk. But here’s some bad news: Anxiety can make you act like one sometimes. Thankfully, there’s more good news: Anxiety is highly treatable, and if you struggle with irritability because of anxiety, you’re not alone. When you’re struggling with any kind of mental health issue, it can be easy to become discouraged. While your feelings are valid, it’s important to remember irritability is a symptom many people with anxiety experience and there is help available. Below we’ve listed four tips for managing anxiety-related irritability: 1. Seek Treatment There is no shame in seeking help for your mental health. If you are struggling with irritability related to your anxiety, don’t hesitate to reach out for professional support. To find a therapist in your area, check out this handy therapist finder tool . Many therapists offer sliding scale fees based on your income. Janina Scarlet, Ph.D., clinical psychologist and author of “ Dark Agents: Violet and the Trial of Trauma ,” recommends a type of therapy called acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) for folks struggling with irritability. “ACT focuses on mindfulness techniques to teach people to notice their painful internal experiences and rather than trying to reject them or fight them, ACT teaches people how to be gentle with these experiences,” she said, adding: “ACT also focuses on teaching the individual how to take steps toward their own internal core values, such as toward making friends, being engaged in a community, or helping others. Oftentimes, these steps can allow the individual to find the support and the sense of meaning that they need.” In some cases, treatment may involve taking anxiety medication. Please consult your doctor before starting or stopping any medication. 2. Pay Attention to Your Physical Sensations Our bodies often register our feelings before we are consciously aware of them. For example, you might feel sluggish when you’re sad, or you might start sweating when you feel afraid. If you find yourself constantly snapping at loved ones when you’re in a state of anxiety, it could be helpful to learn to identify your body’s anxiety and irritability cues. “Start by paying attention to how irritability shows up for you — where do you notice it in your body and how does it feel?” Dr. Stoddard said, adding: “For me, I feel a column of anxiety and tension that stretches from my throat to the middle of my belly. When that is accompanied by a sense of urgency, I know I’m irritable. Once you become more familiar with your own patterns, you will have a greater ability to choose how to respond when the irritability shows up.” Does your body get hot when you’re angry? Do you start breathing more quickly when you feel upset? Pay close attention to your physical sensations when you’re getting irritable, and with practice, you may be able to head your feelings off at the pass before you “act out.” 3. Communicate With Family and Friends Because of the shame people with anxiety often feel, it can be hard to communicate your feelings. Though it might feel difficult at first, try talking about your struggles with important people in your life. As you share and own your emotions, you can work to shape your behaviors around your core values, not your temporary emotional state. Frequently, those close to you don’t understand your anxiety and feel provoked by your irritability. Share what helps you when you’re feeling this way. Let them know your feelings aren’t a criticism of them and ask them to do the things that help you emotionally recover quicker. This can go a long way in developing patterns of interacting with others that reduce your anxiety and irritability. Sometimes when we’re struggling with irritability in the midst of anxiety, we believe our reactions are perfectly justified, when they are actually a bit too extreme for what a situation warrants. In these times, asking loved ones to weigh in on our reactions can help. “One thing people can do in their closest relationships is to give their partner or their best friend or their parents permission to say, ‘That was too much,’” Dr. Swartz told The Mighty. She explained this can be helpful for the person struggling with irritability so they can apologize to those they’ve hurt and let their treatment team know they’ve been feeling really irritable. Recovery from any kind of mental health issue takes time, and perhaps more importantly, it takes help from others. We need other people, and there’s no shame in asking your loved ones to give you a heads up when they see your symptoms flaring up. 4. Take Care of Your Body A big part of taking care of your mental health means caring for your physical health as well. “Regular exercise, sleep and good nutrition are the best ways to reduce vulnerability to irritability,” Dr. Stoddard said. “But irritability will still show up sometimes — when we’re stressed or get sick or are unable to get the sleep and exercise we need.” Though we can’t predict when irritability will strike, making lifestyle changes can help us cope with life’s stresses when they do arrive. If you’re struggling with irritability, it’s important to show yourself compassion and get yourself the help you need. If you slip up and snap at a loved one, it’s OK. Recovery involves wins and setbacks. Keep moving forward towards healing. You’ve got this.

Juliette V.

Relatable Photos If You're Too Depressed to Clean During COVID-19

During the COVID-19 worldwide pandemic, a lot of things have fallen to the wayside. Maybe you’re struggling to keep your children educated, fed and entertained, so you’ve put homeschooling demands on the back burner for now. Maybe you’re so anxious and stressed that you aren’t as productive at work as you were in non-pandemic times. Or maybe you’re struggling so much with depression that you haven’t had the motivation or stamina to keep up with your personal hygiene or house cleaning. If you are having a hard time cleaning because of your depression, you’re not alone. In the interest of showing you just how not alone you are, we asked members of The Mighty community who live with depression to share honest photos of what their living spaces look like right now. No matter what you’re struggling with right now, please have compassion for yourself. It’s important to remember we are living through an unprecedented pandemic. It makes sense that we weren’t immediately prepared with an arsenal of coping skills to make it through. Just keep going one day at a time, doing the best you can do. That’s more than enough. Here are the photos they shared with us: 1. “My room, right now, after I took out two heaping bags of trash and a bunch of recycling. Struggling with this right now.” — Jenna W. 2. “The pile of beautiful clothes I took the time to source online (a lot of vintage stuff amongst it) and I still can’t get my sh*t together enough to just move it a few feet away and place it all on hangers!” — Lisa H. 3. “Groceries not getting into cabinets.” — Connie B. 4. “ Even though my house is chaos, my cat just adapts.” — Sirena A. 5. “ Haven’t seen the floor of my closet since this pandemic started, and who knows how long before that too. At least the laundry gets cleaned… but never makes it back to where it’s supposed to go. At least it gives my pup a comfy spot to chill.” — Julia T. 6. “ I’ve tried really hard to keep up the kitchen and living room but I’ve let my room slip because I just don’t have the mental energy to go through and clean it.” — Rachel M. 7. “My room right now. At the beginning of quarantine, my brother asked me to make it livable. Not a big request, but it feels huge and impossible.” — Krista E. 8. “Blanket piles everywhere.” — Jessie A. 9. “I had to move from one place to another last week. The anxiety from COVID-19 as well as the depression due to the sudden change literally makes me cooped up in my bed and ignoring everything. I haven’t put up all of my clothes and put things away from my room.” — Vy N. For more on the coronavirus, check out the following stories from our community: How to Get Through COVID-19 Quarantine With Your Partner Feeling Calm in the Midst of the Coronavirus Pandemic Might Be a Trauma Response The Problem With Saying ‘Only’ the Elderly and Immunocompromised Will Be Affected by COVID-19 7 Things to Do If Social Distancing Is Triggering Your Depression

Juliette V.

Quiz: What TV Show Should You Quarant-Stream Next?

If you’re anything like me, you’ve been putting your TV streaming services to good use during the COVID-19 pandemic. With all this free time at home on our hands, it’s been a free-for-all on streaming services like Netflix, Hulu and Disney+. But even with all the options available to us, there’s still the dreaded moment when you finish a show and have absolutely no idea what to watch next. If you can relate, we’ve got you covered. Take our quick five-question quiz to determine what you should quarant-stream next. Bonus: all of them are mental-health related! Without further ado, here’s the quiz! For more fun quizzes, check out the following: What Hogwarts House Best Describes Your Borderline Personality Disorder? What Fictional Character Best Describes Your Anxiety? What ‘Mean Girls’ Character Is Your Depression?

Juliette V.

If Your Kids Are Driving You Up the Wall, These 17 Memes Are for You

If you’re parenting during COVID-19, take a moment to pat yourself on the back. You might — understandably — be having a difficult time adjusting to parenting (and teaching and coaching and cooking and cleaning…) for your kids. Thankfully, the parenting meme community has your back. From memes about drinking wine to breaking up fights between your “students,” there are some quality parenting memes going around. Because of this, we rounded up some of the best memes you need to see. Though memes won’t “cure” how you’re feeling if you’re struggling with parental responsibilities during COVID-19, they might bring a smile to your face. If you’re struggling with parenting right now, you’re not alone. However you’re feeling is valid and OK! For more support, we encourage you to reach out to our Mighty parenting community by posting a Thought or Question with the hashtag #Parenting. Whatever you’re facing, you don’t have to go it alone. Here are 18 of the best COVID-19 parenting memes on the internet right now: 1. via Mommy Has a Potty Mouth Facebook page 2. View this post on Instagram Pretty sure we can all relate right now! Ughhhhhh! CREDIT UNKNOWN . . . . . . . . . . #momlife #momlifeisthebestlife #momsbelike #momsofinstagram #momproblems #momprobs #mommyhood #motherhood #mother #mom #mommy #parenting #parenthack #momblog #momblogger #mommyblog #mommyblogger #funnymemes #funnymoms #lifewithkids #toddlermom #thestruggleisreal #funnymommemes #covid #quarantine #quarantinelife #personalassistant #kidsA post shared by Mom On Meltdown (@momonmeltdown) on May 7, 2020 at 5:35pm PDT 3. View this post on Instagram I’m ready for my gifts… #covid_19 #homeschool #quarantine #sideeyesstudent #teachersofinstagram #teachermemes #staysafe Repost from @erineelizabeth_11A post shared by Professor Petty (@_professorpetty) on Mar 17, 2020 at 1:14pm PDT 4. View this post on Instagram I just need to gtfo sometimes! • • • • • #idgaf #idgafmamas #momlife #mommemes #hotmessmom #funnymoms #funnymomquotes #parentingmemes #momproblems #mommyhood #badmoms #parentingproblems #motherhoodunfiltered #motherhoodquotes #funnymomquotes #funnymoms #memes #memes???? #memesdaily #funnymemes #funnyquotes #motherhood #funnymemes #funnyquotes #momsofinstagram #motherhoodunplugged #parenting #parentinghumorA post shared by IDGAF Mamas (@idgaf_mamas) on May 4, 2020 at 6:18am PDT 5. View this post on Instagram I have had to make some weeeeeeird food combinations. 8 out of 10 times it wasn’t good ???? #memesofcoronavirus #coronavirusmemes #coronamemes #coronavirusmemesarenotfunny #memes #humour #coronavirus #COVID19 #australia #spreadlaughternotgerms #quarantine #socialdistance #keepthedistance #washyourhands #chopped #foodnetworkA post shared by Only The Best COVID-19 Content (@memesofcoronavirus) on Mar 27, 2020 at 6:17pm PDT 6. View this post on Instagram Please I just need one minute to myself is that even possible??! #stayhome • • • • • #idgaf #idgafmamas #momlife #follow #mommemes #funnymoms #memes #memes???? #memesdaily #dailymemes #meme #memesquad #funny #funnymemes #sofunny #memer #motherhood #momfacts #facts #lmao #lmfao #lol #isolation #socialdistancing #covid_19 #selfisolation #quarantine #doyourpartA post shared by IDGAF Mamas (@idgaf_mamas) on Apr 29, 2020 at 5:03pm PDT 7. View this post on Instagram Our uniform is pajamas. . @marriageandmartinis does like we do.???? . #createdby @marriageandmartinis #hotmessmom #momsofinstagram #instamom #sahm #realhousewife #funnymom #funnymoms #mommemes #humor #humour #parentsofinstagram #dads #motherhoodrising #motherhoodunplugged #writersofig #tweets #tweetgram #tweetyourlife #funnytweets #memesdaily #follow @marriageandmartinis #homeschooling #homeschoollife #zoomA post shared by Megan Rikas is MegsHAUSTED (@megshausted) on Apr 26, 2020 at 6:44am PDT 8. View this post on Instagram And that kids is our fraction lesson for the day! Now it's time for mommy to 'clean up' and by clean up, I mean drink! ???? . . . . . . . . . . #momlife #momlifeisthebestlife #momsbelike #momsofinstagram #momproblems #momprobs #momfail #mommyhood #motherhood #mother #mom #mommy #parenting #parentsbelike #parentfail #momblog #momblogger #mommyblog #mommyblogger #funnymemes #funnymoms #motherhustler #lifewithkids #toddlermom #mathlesson #thestruggleisreal #funnymommemes #homeschoollife #homeschool #wineA post shared by Mom On Meltdown (@momonmeltdown) on Apr 30, 2020 at 12:24pm PDT 9. View this post on Instagram Think we’ll try this.???? . . Via twitter.com/danprimack . #hotmessmom #momsofinstagram #instamom #sahm #realhousewife #funnymom #mommemes #parentsofinstagram #dads #motherhoodrising #motherhoodunplugged #tweets #tweetgram #tweetyourlife #memesdaily #homeschoollife #chores #socialdistancingA post shared by Megan Rikas is MegsHAUSTED (@megshausted) on Apr 8, 2020 at 9:49am PDT 10. View this post on Instagram Currently. CREDIT UNKNOWN . . . . . . . . . . #momlife #momlifeisthebestlife #momsbelike #momsofinstagram #momproblems #momprobs #momfail #mommyhood #motherhood #mother #mom #mommy #parenting #parentsbelike #parentfail #momblog #momblogger #mommyblog #mommyblogger #funnymemes #funnymoms #motherhustler #lifewithkids #toddlermom #motherhoodunplugged #thestruggleisreal #funnymommemes #kidsroomsA post shared by Mom On Meltdown (@momonmeltdown) on Apr 24, 2020 at 6:33am PDT 11. View this post on Instagram I think @goldfishandchickennuggets needs to put her kids on an all organic non-gmo kale-only diet. Plus lots of essential oils! . . . . . #momtruth #momminainteasy #momlifebelike #scarymommy #organic #hotmessA post shared by Dad to the Bone (@real_dadtothebone) on May 13, 2020 at 3:23pm PDT 12. View this post on Instagram I don't know about ya'll but I'm ready to shout 'To the windowwwwww to the wall' and 'Back this ass up'! All while Chris holds my purse! ???? ???? @heathershrader4 . . . . . . . . . . #momlife #momlifeisthebestlife #momsbelike #momsofinstagram #momproblems #momprobs #momfail #mommyhood #motherhood #mother #mom #mommy #parenting #parentsbelike #parentfail #momblog #momblogger #mommyblog #mommyblogger #funnymemes #funnymoms #motherhustler #lifewithkids #toddlermom #motherhoodunplugged #thestruggleisreal #funnymommemes #holdmypurse #quarantine #danceA post shared by Mom On Meltdown (@momonmeltdown) on Apr 27, 2020 at 8:36am PDT 13. View this post on Instagram The ole rusty metal trick…#workfromhome #workingfromhomeA post shared by Work from home Memes (@workfromhomememes) on May 8, 2020 at 1:55pm PDT 14. View this post on Instagram I’m not even embarrassed about this lol!for more funny memes like this follow my girl @krayons.n.tequila #stayhome • • • • #idgaf #idgafmamas #momlife #mommemes #hotmessmom #funnymoms #funnymomquotes #parentingmemes #momproblems #mommyhood #badmoms #parentingproblems #motherhoodunfiltered #motherhoodquotes #funnymomquotes #funnymoms #memes #memes???? #memesdaily #funnymemes #funnyquotes #motherhood #funnymemes #funnyquotes #momsofinstagram #motherhoodunplugged #parenting #parentinghumorA post shared by IDGAF Mamas (@idgaf_mamas) on Apr 22, 2020 at 8:56pm PDT 15. View this post on Instagram For real, tho.???? . ☕️ @megshausted ☕️ ☕️ #createdby @megshausted #hotmessmom #momsofinstagram #instamom #instamoms #sahm #girlmom #funnymom #funnymoms #mommemes #humor #humour #parentsofinstagram #dads #motherhoodrising #writersofig #tweets #tweetgram #tweetyourlife #funnytweets #memesdaily #follow @megshausted #megshausted #4yo #watchingmovies #parenting #scarymommyA post shared by Megan Rikas is MegsHAUSTED (@megshausted) on Mar 9, 2020 at 7:22am PDT 16. View this post on Instagram By now I’m sure @momlikethatpodcast knows that she’ll never have alone time ever again! . . . . . #momtruth #momprobs #momminainteasy #scarymommy #realmotherhood #unicornmom #motherhoodunpluggedA post shared by Dad to the Bone (@real_dadtothebone) on May 13, 2020 at 11:32am PDT 17. View this post on Instagram I love you but I ain’t mad when it’s your bed time #stayhome • • • • #idgaf #idgafmamas #momlife #mommemes #hotmessmom #funnymoms #funnymomquotes #parentingmemes #momproblems #mommyhood #badmoms #parentingproblems #motherhoodunfiltered #motherhoodquotes #funnymomquotes #funnymoms #memes #memes???? #memesdaily #funnymemes #funnyquotes #motherhood #funnymemes #funnyquotes #momsofinstagram #motherhoodunplugged #parenting #parentinghumor #idgafmamasocA post shared by IDGAF Mamas (@idgaf_mamas) on Apr 24, 2020 at 5:01pm PDT

Juliette V.

People Are Mad Dakota Johnson Called Her Depression 'Beautiful'

There are a lot of words people with depression use to describe their mental illness. Some classic ones might include “dark,” “exhausting,” “debilitating” and even “excruciating” — just to name a few. But in a recent Marie Claire feature, “50 Shades of Gray” actress Dakota Johnson used an unexpected adjective to describe her depression: “beautiful.” “I’ve struggled with depression since I was young—since I was 15 or 14. That was when, with the help of professionals, I was like, Oh, this is a thing I can fall into. But I’ve learned to find it beautiful because I feel the world,” she told Marie Claire. Backlash on social media was swift, and social media users who live with depression were not happy about her characterization. Dakota Johnson needs to stfu.How irresponsible. There's nothing romantic or beautiful about depression. It fucking kills people. There was nothing beautiful about me attempting to kill myself. Or hurting myself. Or screaming because I can't stand the numbness. Fuck you. https://t.co/e0oU9crzyD— bef (@beffybadbelly) May 13, 2020 Real Depression is NOT beautiful. This article and Dakota Johnson saying so is doing a disservice to those with real mental health issues who STRUGGLE with this awful condition and to all those who are fighting for changes to address it. @afspnational— Wendy (@Wendy33298653) May 13, 2020 Dakota Johnson calling depression “beautiful” makes me cringe ‘cause my youth, my potentials and my could-have-been-happy days are all burnt to ashes and dust by depression and other mental illnesses. Maybe people like her struggle w/ a different type of depression.— ???????????????????? ???? (@dead6irl66) May 13, 2020 Dakota Johnson says her depression is beautiful – She clearly doesn't have depression. Depression is not beautiful. It's not something to glamorize. It's not something to praise. Do not glamorize it. That's such a disgusting and horrible thing to do. It's terrifying- (1/2)— Caelyn-Brooke (@politicalmurmur) May 14, 2020 I didn’t go through 10+ years of therapy, 5+ years of medication, 4 years of self harm, binging/purging, and starving myself, just for a Dakota Johnson, a celebrity, to call #depression beautiful. Gtfo. https://t.co/nZEvFB4q61— Hannah Bochel ???? (@mini_mama2) May 13, 2020 While Johnson meant no harm by her comments and was likely trying to say her struggles with depression have given her a “beautiful” capacity to feel (as opposed to saying depression itself is beautiful), it’s not surprising her comment stirred up frustration in folks who live with depression. The reality is, depression is serious. Major depressive disorder affects approximately 17.3 million American adults, and depression is the cause of over two-thirds of the 30,000 reported suicides in the U.S. each year, according to the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA). Johnson has the right to describe her personal experience with depression however she chooses, but it’s worth being aware of the fact that folks in the mental health community are tired of people romanticizing mental illness and not taking their struggles seriously. This is something Mighty contributor Erica Chau touched on her article, “Please Stop Romanticizing Depression“: There is nothing romantic about my depression. It’s not the kissing of scars. It’s not holding me while I cry. It’s not any of the posts that you on Tumblr or in movies. It’s not beautiful. It’s not delicate or dainty. It’s not the hero saving the damsel.To me, depression is not romantic. Depression is pain. And it’s numbness. And it’s at the same time. Depression is an illness and it can be chronic and long-lasting and it’s not something a kiss on the forehead can fix. What are your thoughts on Dakota Johnson’s comments about depression? Let us know in the comments below.

Juliette V.

10 Quarantine Birthday Party Ideas (and Gifts!) for All Ages

For many, birthdays are a time for celebration with loved ones. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has limited a lot of typical birthday options that take place in-person. Luckily, there are things you can do to celebrate, even while social distancing. Sometimes when you have to get a little extra creative, results can be better than anticipated. Who knows? You might even have one of your favorite birthdays while in quarantine! We asked our Mighty community to share their suggestions for celebrating a birthday during the COVID-19 pandemic. We compiled their answers below — and added a few gift suggestions of our own! If birthdays are difficult for you in non-pandemic times, you’re not alone. Below, we’ve included some stories you might find relatable. Why Birthdays Are Hard for Me as Someone With Mental Illness 11 Birthday Gifts to Get a Friend Who’s Been Feeling Suicidal Celebrating My Birthday When Depression Tells Me Life Isn’t Worth Celebrating Here’s what our community shared with us: 1. Hop on a Video Call By now, we’ve all become familiar with video calling services like Zoom, BlueJeans, FaceTime, HouseParty and Facebook Chat. Find the one that works best for you and plan a virtual party! “My family and I used Zoom to video chat and sing my cousin a happy birthday. Even my grandmother joined even though she isn’t too tech savvy.” — Yoeli R. “For my son’s 6th birthday, we drove around to his friends’ houses and dropped off cake and activity/goodie bags on their porches. Then that afternoon, the kids did a group Skype together to virtually celebrate.” — Amanda K. 2. Organize a ‘Birthday Parade’ Just because you can’t spend time with other people at close distances doesn’t mean you can’t participate in a car parade! Get a group together and decorate your cars to celebrate a loved one’s birthday. This can be a great activity for kiddos who want to see their friends (from a distance of course!). “We did a drive by birthday — set up a timeframe via Evite and had cars drive through with decorated cars, signs and music. Both of my kids have had their birthdays during COVID-19 and they did a joint drive-by birthday party and loved it.” — Megan B. “ Go big or go home! My brother did this for my niece’s birthday parade a few weeks ago.” — Katie L. Submitted by Katie L. 3. Have a Backyard Campout With People You’re Quarantining With Outdoor activities like camping aren’t super feasible right now, but if you have a backyard, make the most of it with an outdoor fire pit — complete with s’mores. If you live in an apartment or condo, try pitching a tent in your living room (a.k.a. the great indoors!). “ Me and my son both had birthdays in quarantine so we had a little fire with roast marshmallows and we sat out under the stars for ages. It was nice.” — Jessica A. Submitted by Jessica A. Submitted by Jessica A. 4. Raise Money for Your Favorite Mental Health Nonprofit It’s no secret that in the midst of COVID-19, folks have been struggling more than ever with their mental health. For those who want to give back to others on their birthdays, starting a fundraiser is a wonderful idea. If you want to give your loved one a tangible gift, To Write Love on Her Arms has a shop full of hopeful merchandise for anyone battling mental illness. Check out one of their shirts below. “On my birthday in quarantine, I would ask my loved ones to donate to a mental health nonprofit in my honor.” — Sarah E.   5. Ask Loved Ones to Send Pictures of What They’re Doing Asking folks to be part of your birthday party can feel difficult sometimes! If you’re shy about throwing a party for yourself, you could try simply asking people to send photos of themselves on your special day. It’s a great way and easy way to feel the love. “I emailed friends and family and asked, at some point during my birthday, for them to send a picture from their day — no need to make it a “special” picture — just a pic from a moment in their day, as a way to spend some part of the day together. It was an experiment and it was so much fun. All day long I got fun and funny pics from all kinds of people. Now that my birthday is over, I’ve been thinking of getting all the pics printed and putting them up as a kind of ‘ picture quilt’ to remember the day and the people I shared it with.” — Elizabeth H. 6. Plan a Social Distancing ‘Scavenger Hunt’ Hosting a virtual or social distancing scavenger hunt can be a fun way to celebrate your birthday while in quarantine — especially if you have kids! For ideas, check out this free quarantine scavenger hunt guide. “ I hosted a three hour drop in virtual party with a scavenger hunt (kid-friendly), an online game and ‘corona confessions.’ Around 20 of my friends were able to make the party — some of them I have not seen in over a year. I laughed more than I have in a long time!” — Dana C. “Friends and family created a ‘treasure hunt’ for me to scavenge for my gifts. They had balloons and wrapped presents at each stop. They placed the map in my mailbox.” — Heidi M. Submitted by Heidi M. 7. Order a Subscription Box When you can’t celebrate in person, showing someone you care with a gift can mean a lot. Order a subscription box full of self-care goodies for your loved one stuck inside on their birthday. For ideas, check out this list of subscription boxes people in our community love. 8. Play a ‘Prank’ on Your Loved One Nothing says “Happy Birthday!” like a good old-fashioned prank. Show your loved one you care April Fool’s style (but please, don’t play pranks relating to COVID-19). Decorating someone’s lawn with funny gnomes or stealthily placing a whoopie cushion can be a surefire way to make your loved one laugh on their birthday. “However old they are, get that many goofy lawn ornaments (flamingos, pinwheels, whatever) and put them all over their yard in the middle of the night. They’ll have fun guessing who it was and it will be hilarious for everyone involved. All done with love, of course.” — Renee F. 9. Decorate Your Home for a Party Even if you’re just hopping on Zoom for a call, you can still decorate your immediate surroundings. Order balloons and streamers online and go to town! Sometimes being in a festive environment can get you in a festive mood. “Decorated the dining room with balloons and streamers and made a birthday sign. Also, set up a family Zoom and a friend Zoom.” — Jen J. 10. Try Out Jackbox on Video Calls Jackbox Games are multiplayer games you can play while on video calls with your friends and family. In order to play, only one person has to own the party pack, but you can have between four and 10 players. Learn how to play here. “Jackbox! It’s a great party game, even when playing virtually, and all you need is a phone. Plus you’ll find out which of your friends think they’re funny, and which are actually funny.” — Ashley K. How are you celebrating your quarantine birthday? Let us know in the comments below.

Juliette V.

Megachurch Pastor Darrin Patrick Dies in Possible Suicide at 49

Update: The cause of Patrick’s death is currently under investigation, with initial reports suggesting his death appeared to be a suicide. No foul play is suspected. (The Mighty follows guidelines for responsible reporting on suicide which is why we are not sharing the method of his death.) Megachurch pastor Darrin Patrick died at age 49 on Friday, according to a statement released by Seacoast Church. Patrick was a teaching pastor at Seacoast Church in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, as well as the founding pastor of Journey Church in St. Louis, Missouri, where he lived. “We are saddened to announce the sudden passing of Pastor Darrin Patrick,” the church’s statement said. “Darrin was a loved member of the Seacoast family, the teaching team, and pastoral staff and we are mourning his loss. Darrin had a gift for teaching the Word and a heart for encouraging other pastors.” The statement explains that while no official cause of death has been released, his death appears to have been self-inflicted. You can read the church’s full statement here. In 2016, Patrick was removed from church leadership at Journey and from his role as vice-president of the Acts 29 church planting network for a “historical pattern of sin” and an emotional affair. After stepping back from his leadership roles, Patrick began a 26-month long restoration period before returning to ministry. In an interview with Christianity Today, he described the experience: “The process was 26 months long and involved over 200 hours of professional counseling,” he said in the interview. “Perhaps most importantly, I met leaders whom I had hurt or wounded during my ministry. I listened to them and apologized to them specifically for things I had done to cause them pain. There was also tons of reading, reflection, and journaling as a part of the process.” Though Patrick’s death has not yet been confirmed as suicide, he is not the only pastor to have died by suicide. In September of last year, megachurch pastor and mental health advocate Jarrid Wilson ended his life. It’s common to think pastors and other authority figures don’t struggle, but it’s important to remember pastors are real people with real struggles too. ⠀ Since news broke, Patrick’s fans and loved ones have expressed their condolences and offered prayers and support for his family on social media. I hate this! God help us!…weeping yet again…want to wrap my arms around my pastor brothers, hold them close, keep them safe, but I can’t…I cling to four words in my grief…Jesus is still Lord. https://t.co/TJyejy0VEV— Paul David Tripp (@PaulTripp) May 8, 2020 Lord be with the family of @darrinpatrick— Lecrae (@lecrae) May 8, 2020 I’m devasted. Heartbroken. We text on Monday and both our last words were “Love you brother”. Please pray for his wife and kids. Jesus come quickly. https://t.co/RVoeoEaSo8— Matt Carter (@_Matt_Carter) May 8, 2020 I’m struggling to find words. They are frozen in my throat. Sorrow upon sorrow upon sorrow. For him. For his family. For his friends. For all who knew and loved him. Jesus, have mercy…. https://t.co/ASlZzPBj6N— Kay Warren (@KayWarren1) May 8, 2020 It doesn’t matter who you are — anyone can struggle with their mental health. If you are a pastor or Christian struggling with suicidal thoughts, you’re not alone, and your struggles don’t make you less of a Christian. If you are struggling, please reach out to a trusted loved one, and check out our list of suicide prevention resources. Recovery is possible, and help is available. If this news is hard for you, know you are not alone. If you need support or want to connect with people who have been there, post a Thought or Question on The Mighty with the hashtag, #CheckInWithMe. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741. Head here for a list of crisis centers around the world.

Juliette V.

'13 Reasons Why' Season 4 Available for Streaming on June 5, 2020

On Monday, Netflix announced the fourth and final season of its controversial show, “13 Reasons Why,” will be available for streaming on June 5, 2020. The season will consist of 10 episodes (as opposed to its usual 13). The video announcing season four’s release date, called “Saying Goodbye,” shows footage of the cast wrapping up filming, but is not a trailer for what is to come in season four. You can see it below. Netflix told Buzzfeed the upcoming season will focus on the high schoolers preparing to graduate, “but before they say goodbye, they’ll have to keep a dangerous secret buried and face heartbreaking choices that could impact their futures forever.” For those who haven’t seen the show, the first season of “13 Reasons Why” is based on a teen novel of the same name, and focuses on Hannah Baker’s (Katherine Langford) suicide and the 13 tapes she left behind for her classmates explaining “why” she ended her life. The following seasons are not based on the book. The second season addresses sexual assault, specifically how the show’s villain Bryce (Justin Prentice) sexually assaulted Hannah before her death, as well as other girls at Liberty High School. The third season seeks to solve the mystery of who killed Bryce. The teen show has been criticized for its handling of sensitive topics. Both season one and two culminated in incredibly graphic scenes in the final episode — the first had a graphic suicide scene, and the second, a graphic rape scene. In July of last year, “13 Reasons Why” producers decided to edit out the graphic suicide scene in season one. Prior to this decision, multiple studies found the suicide rate among young people increased following the release of the show. For more on “13 Reasons Why,” check out the following stories from our community: Why I Wish I Didn’t Watch ’13 Reasons Why’ Hannah Baker From ’13 Reasons Why’ Could Have Been Me No One Should Watch the Last Episode of ’13 Reasons Why’ Season 2 ’13 Reasons Why’ Reveals Who Killed Bryce Will you be watching season four?