What’s it like growing up with a sibling with mental illness? In today’s show, we hear it straight-from-the-shoulder from Gabe’s little sister Debbie, who shares what it was like living with Gabe well before anyone knew he had bipolar disorder.
Join us for a great discussion on mental health issues in families. While it’s ever hard-boiled, there is often a silver lining.
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About The Not Crazy podcast Hosts
Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and talker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the favourite book, Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations, available from Amazon; indicated reproduces are also available directly from Gabe Howard . To learn more, please visit his website, gabehoward.com.
Lisa is the producer of the Psych Central podcast, Not Crazy. She is the recipient of The National Alliance on Mental Illness’s “Above and Beyond” award, used to work extensively with the Ohio Peer Supporter Certification program, and is a workplace suicide prevention trainer. Lisa has battled depression her entire life and has worked alongside Gabe in mental health advocacy for over a decade. She lives in Columbus, Ohio, with her husband; enjoys international cros; and says 12 pairs of shoes online, collects the best one, and moves the other 11 back.
Computer Generated Transcript for” Family Mental Illness” Episode
Editor’s Note: Please be mindful that this transcript has been computer generated and therefore may contain corrects and grammar mistakes. Thank you.
Lisa: You’re listening to Not Crazy, a Psych Central podcast hosted by my ex-husband, who has bipolar disorder. Together, we created the mental health podcast for people who hate mental health podcasts.
Gabe: Welcome to this week’s episode of the Not Crazy podcast, I’m your emcee, Gabe Howard, and with me, as always, is the awe-inspiring Lisa Kiner.
Debbie: Yeah, I don’t think so, I’m not Lisa.
Gabe: Well, then, who are you?
Debbie: I’m Debbie, your little sister.
Gabe: Oh, my little sister is on the present, you are familiar with, we pick on you a great deal, but where is Lisa?
Debbie: She left.
Gabe: She’s left before and she’s always come back. So, I think we’ll be OK here. For all of our listeners, she has only left for one escapade. I predict she will be back next week. I wanted to have Debbie because as longtime listeners of the present know my little sister and well, certainly my family, but surely my little sister and my mommy both take a huge beating. And since my mother wasn’t available, Debbie gets to help co-host the Not Crazy podcast. Debbie, welcome.
Debbie: Well, thank you for having me. I will do my best.
Gabe: Now, Lisa often has a quote, have you prepared a quotation for the listeners?
Debbie: Don’t chew amber snowfall?
Gabe: All claim, Lisa definitely throws more endeavour into it.
Debbie: Well, maybe if you would have given me a little advance notice?
Gabe: Oh, yeah, advance notice is really not part of the, part of the process, we really like to kept parties on the spot and then only be like, ha ha, gotcha.
Debbie: Yes, as your text this morning indicated.
Gabe: We’re part of the gotcha, the gotcha podcast media. We’re impostor podcasts. No,
Gabe: I’m just kidding. We’re as real as they can be. We can even say things like bullshit, but not the F name. So now, you are familiar with, is progressing. Debbie, I wanted to have you on now because we talk about our families a lot, Lisa and me. We time, we accompany things through our experiences. But you have a unique perspective because you watched me grow up as my younger sister. Now, Debbie is five and a half years younger. She is my baby sister. I are of the view that comes maybe missed a little bit. So, when I was 14 and going through a really troubling meters, you would have been eight.
Debbie: Something like that,
Gabe: Does the math hold?
Debbie: Don’t compile me math. Come on.
Gabe: We all went to public school. We’re not good at this. Education was not a priority in the Howard household in the early 90 s.
Gabe: Debbie, what was it like? What do you recollect about your big brother, Gabe? I know you’ve talked before about how you searched up to me. I was just your big brother. There was no concept of mental illness or bipolar affective disorder or even a problem. But you do recollect some less than positive things from our childhood that had to do with me and our mothers. Tell that story, or any of the stories.
Debbie: Like you said, I was very young and self-involved, my life was my best friend and I speculate I expended more meter at her home than our house. However, I do remember a duet incidences that, looking back, can only be attributed to being an untreated bipolar. I know there was the time and it was when we were living at Karl Road, so I was in elementary school.
Gabe: Yeah, that would situated me in high school.
Debbie: And I can recollect you “ve done something”. You went in trouble for something, I don’t know what it was, but I could was told you down in the basement and you were just heart wrenching sobbings, screams. Like not enraged screams, but like just some heart wrenching, like being down there was going to kill you or something. And.
Gabe: Now, my bedroom was in the basement, so
Gabe: We should point that out, mom and dad did not situated me in the vault. I was in the basement. That’s where my apartment was.
Debbie: Your room is down there. You were probably just told to be done in order to your room for something, but I could was told you upstairs. I retain turning to Mom and like what’s going on? You know, what’s wrong with Gabe? And she’s like, this doesn’t concern you. Story of “peoples lives” being parted. Anything that’s not pleasant, we don’t share. So, I was just told to go outside because I couldn’t take the screams and the cries anymore. But I honestly don’t know what happened.
Gabe: And I don’t think anybody else does either. One of the things that I retain from my point of view, of course, is something would happen and the something that they are able to happen, would ever be, frankly, uneventful. It’d be stupid, you know, had dessert when I wasn’t supposed to, you know, got into the Little Debbie snacks. Oh, the repugnance, you are familiar with, back talked. It would always be something small-scale. This would always be brought to an end in the same place with me feeling dejected, abandoned, alone. I contemplate other beings would just bounce back. Other boys would just be like, well, was caught, you are familiar with, time to move on and got to be better at this in the future. Other homes, I don’t think went through this, but I was always and, Debbie, I can’t even put into terms these caches of time left alone, rocking back and forth, screaming. And I felt that nobody was ever going to enjoy me ever again. And from Mom and Dad’s perspective, they were just like, well, this is a temper tantrum. From my perspective, the death of my family appeared because I was, I was now, I don’t know, like excluded from their own families. And it would make hours for this to work itself out or wind down. And then we’d all just go along like nothing ever happened. That was how I ever remembered it. I was abandoned and alone for, you know, four to five hours screaming in the basement. Mom and Dad would ignore me. My mood would eventually cycle and then we’d all pretend good-for-nothing happened. What was it like for you? This hertz playing out over and over and over again for you to watch without anybody ever telling you why this was occurring?
Debbie: Well, you begin to think it’s normal, it’s the Leave it to Beaver, we don’t talk about anything that is awkward. We don’t air our dirty linen to others. You know, it’s.
Gabe: But we don’t even breeze it to ourselves,
Debbie: Well, yeah.
Gabe: It’s really weird that I find myself here. Like, hey, Gabe, you can discuss all the things that we screwed up in your childhood live on the aura on a podcast listened to by tens of thousands of beings? No problem. But all the way back then, Debbie would say, hey, what’s wrong with my big brother and Mom and Dad would be like, don’t worry about it. We’re not going to discuss it. That’s a eerie dichotomy, right?
Debbie: I think it was more along the lines of you were in trouble, if you don’t want to be in bother extremely, then you need to mind your own business. This doesn’t involve you.
Gabe: Yeah, but nobody else behaves this action. When you got in agitate, you didn’t go to your chamber and scream, cry for six hours.
Debbie: No , no. I might have cried, but that’s normal.
Gabe: Did Billy do this? You’re the child, you’re the youngest. I have a middle brother. Did Billy ever behave this style when he got in tribulation?
Debbie: I remember one time when he got in disturb and Mom went to spank him with the loathsome wooden paddle,
Gabe: Yes, the Board of Education.
Debbie: And every time she went to swing, he made this high pitch funny noise and it went her to where she was bursting out giggling and she could not spank him because he would jump up like a parody reputation and make a funny noise. And she was laughing very hard-bitten. I be reminded that. So that’s what you got to do.
Gabe: I’m the oldest, you’re a very young, there was three of us, and when I looked at the two of you, my younger siblings, you didn’t have these problems with Mom and Dad. And as an adult, looking back, it’s because the two of you are familiar with when said shut up. I could not get out of the feedback curve. Every time I opened my cheek, Dad would ground me for another week and I preserved going for so long. Mom pointed out to dad, we’re into years now. Gabe is grounded for years. She was finally able to separate us. But, Debbie, this had to be awful to watch. I symbolize, me, Mom and Dad, we crusaded my entire infancy until I lastly leave here and I left home before I graduated high school because the arguing was so incredible and so pointless and so ineffective. Certainly was just so futile that I had to leave. Why were you told that I leave here? All of a sudden your older brother is gone and he’s moving in with grandma and grandpa and now you and Billy are left behind. So, did Mom and Dad ever sit you down and is just like, hey, we got rid of Gabe?
Debbie: No, they didn’t. It was just Gabe’s going to move in with Grandma and Grandpa, and I’m sure I asked why, but I don’t have any impression of an actual rebut. It was just Gabe’s going to live with Grandma and Grandpa. I was like, well, I didn’t know that was an option. Grandma gives me spaghetti O’s.
Gabe: Yeah, I’m the favorite it’s only policy options for me. Was that ever addressed in the family?
Debbie: I don’t think so.
Gabe: I was croak, did you wants to know why?
Debbie: I entail, I did, but, you know, I was given your email address so we could keep in contact.
Gabe: But that wouldn’t even be right away because I didn’t get e-mail until my second year.
Debbie: Trying to think if we wrote symbols like physical words, because, you are familiar with, that’s what people did in our olden days.
Gabe: In our olden days? Wow, wow,
Gabe: Gabe and Debbie are so aged, we retain when there was no Internet.
Debbie: That’s accurate. We’re older than Google.
Gabe: We’re older than Google. Wow, wow, we’re older than Yahoo!
Gabe: So here’s another interesting thing, let’s talk about that for a moment. So I got the great idea, Mom and Dad, I stole from Mom and Dad. Let’s just open that, like, right up. I want to own that. I would get into Dad’s wallet, Mom’s pocketbook. I would figure out where they deterred coin. This is a long time ago. There was more of a currency economy back then. So beings kept money on them a lot more than they supposed to do now. And I would steal the money and I would use it to buy pizza. Mostly, I stole fund for food.
Debbie: In your justification, I do remember a term that I ogled in coat pockets and found.
Gabe: But that was for like deepen,
Gabe: Did you ever go in Mom’s purse?
Debbie: No , no , no purse off limits.
Gabe: You ever go in Dad’s wallet?
Gabe: No , no, that was a
Debbie: Didn’t matter whose coat it was, I did is currently considering coating pockets.
Gabe: That was a spare change thing. Thank you for trying to realize my. Yeah, “its not” a good swindle. Mom and dad knew how much coin they had in their wallets. And the first time you did it, they were just like I guessed I had more. But, hey, perhaps I stopped and picked up milk on the way. But eventually they prepare me up. I was caught. They knew that I was stealing the money. Mom and Dad started locking their bedroom door so that I could not steal the money anymore. OK , no problem. This can be solved by shoving your minuscule newborn sister through the ruler soap opening and having her open the bedroom door. You can steal all the money that you want, then merely lock it all back up. And when mom and dad are like, where is this money starting? They thoughts, well, it can’t be plagiarize because after all, we had it locked up in our bedroom. Nobody could come in. Now, this worked perfectly. We never got caught. We admitted to this as adults year later. Perfect plan. But here’s the interesting thing. We did this together
Debbie: Oh, yeah.
Gabe: And we didn’t get caught. So Mom and Dad didn’t have any parenting to do. We were adults when this came out. But they still very much believe that this was an example of me corrupting you. Why is that?
Debbie: Because I was too young to know any better,
Debbie: Hey, if I was small enough to fit through a bathroom opening, I was young.
Gabe: First off, you’re tiny, I think you would fit through that window now.
Debbie: Well, maybe not now I’ve got 30 pounds of pandemic load on.
Gabe: Ok, before the pandemic, I think you would have fit through that space,
Gabe: I “ve known you” merely have one kid, Debbie, so this is difficult, but, you know, go into the future and claim you got a second kid and both of them together, break into your apartment and steal coin. Do you time accused one kid and give the other kid a terminated pass, or are you mad at both of them?
Debbie: I would be mad at both, but I’d probably be more upset with the older one simply because they’re older and should be providing a good example. Even if the younger one was like, hey, let’s do this, the older one should be like , no, that that’s wrong.
Gabe: See what a mess this is.
Gabe: See how hard it is to be me? Not only did I have a unpleasant illness that nobody noticed, but I was also responsible for helping raise my siblings. My siblings were a mess because I was their speciman. And Mom and Dad are like, wow, I can’t believe they had to watch this. You know, Debbie, I think you turned out pretty good. You’re the only college graduate, 10 years in the military. You’ve only been married once. I want, time. You’re welcome. You’re welcome.
Debbie: Well, I always seemed up to you.
Gabe: The instance that I mount for you was clearly perfect.
Debbie: Well, you know, you learn much from others, whether it be what to do or what not to do.
Gabe: Wow. Oh, I, I detest you so much right now,
Debbie: I’m sorry. It’s true, though. I’m not saying that I searched to you and say, OK, I don’t want to do that. No, that’s not true. I actually have always ogled up to you. I still look up to you to this day.
Gabe: Well, I appreciate that, but it’s for what not to do, right?
Debbie: Well , no, but there are things that you learn what not to do from others. It was one of the things of when I was in the military, I had gone some bad commanders and I was like, well, I’m going to learn from this chairwoman. I’m learning that I does not wish to do that when I become one. And I think that’s everybody. You know, you learn from your environment regardless.
Gabe: So we’ve established that you’re hanging on to this idea that, yeah, Gabe was kind of screwed up as a kid, our kinfolk didn’t handle it very well. Mom and Dad didn’t talk about it. But then you became an adult, I get diagnosed and then our home actually cuddled it. That is the segue into now adult Debbie. Be honest, before I was diagnosed with bipolar affective disorder, did you have any understanding of severe and persistent mental illness whatsoever? Did you know the signs? Did you understand suicidality? Would you have been a good propose for somebody who was sick before I was diagnosed?
Debbie: No, because my merely insight was Hollywood.
Gabe: Yeah, and they do, they do a bang-up job,
Debbie: Oh, yeah, well, Hollywood and then when it comes to suicide, my exclusively thing is don’t get it on or you’ll go to hell.
Gabe: Oh, yeah, that’s fantastic.
Debbie: The Catholic upbringing, you know.
Gabe: Yeah, yeah, there’s a lot to unpack there, but then I went diagnosed and “its become” personal. It wasn’t just this nebulous concept of mental illness and suicidality. You weren’t talking about it in the abstract anymore. All of those utterances now applied to Gabe. They be submitted to your friend. They applied to somebody that you knew and desired and had a personal relationship. Did this alteration the acces that you investigated and learned about mental health, mental illness and suicide?
Debbie: Oh, absolutely. For starters, when I first understand better your diagnosis, and you’d send me attaches, you’re like, go read about it, go attend this class. And I would do that. And I’m like, what is this? It simply doesn’t make sense to me. And I learned more actually speaking your blogs, maybe because they’re so raw and unfiltered and because there are certain things that you and I, we just don’t talk about. I will admit that I skipped some of the blogs because there’s still some things I don’t need to know when it comes to my big brother. Some legends I know from listening to podcasts, and I can’t burn them out of my leader, but.
Gabe: Yes. Hey, listen, if it realizes you feel any better, the day that Mom told me about you buying French lingerie and how expensive it was and when Mom told me that, Debbie, tell the French lingerie story.
Debbie: Oh, my gosh, so I was stationed in Germany. Friends came to visit and we made the decision to do a night overnight junket to Paris because it was a train ride away. And even though they are, I was like, you know what? I am going to buy some neat French lingerie to have because I can. Because, you know, it just seemed like that was my picture of French beings. Anyways.
Gabe: So you invested how much on this lingerie prepared?
Debbie: I don’t even remember, but it was.
Gabe: A ghastly sum,
Debbie: It was way too much. Yes.
Gabe: And so Mom is telling me this story about my baby sister going to Paris and acquiring French lingerie, and she’s telling the story as, oh, can you believe that your sister paid so much better and went to the sale rack? And when Mom was done, I said, why is Debbie buying lingerie? And Mom said, Well, I. And Mom’s like your sister is stretched and she is a woman. I’m like, I don’t want to hear that. This is too much, I don’t, and we reform the subject. So years later, poverty-stricken Debbie is listening to a podcast on hypersexuality and starts hearing some of these legends. And she’s like, why did I have to hear this? And when we were talking about it, I said to Debbie, Well, there is that time you bought lingerie. And Debbie is like you think those are equivalent? And I’m like, well, kind of. I think that the pain might be the same. We’ll be back in a minute after we hear from our sponsor.
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Gabe: We’re back talking mental health with my newborn sister, Debbie Wyatt. One of the things that you told me is that having this knowledge really gave you to help many of your students. Now, the average onset of mental illness is 16 to 24. So, Debbie, as a college professor, you are right in line with the average age of symptoms came to see you. And you’ve been very helpful to many of your students who, well, frankly, need steering because there’s just not a lot of advice out there.
Debbie: Yeah, as a college instructor, I teach a bunch of various types of classifies and I likewise teach emergency medical response. And some of my classifies, they have strict attendance policies. And in the past, when I first started learn so students might say, oh, well, I had to miss these days, I just wasn’t feeling well. And I’m like, oh, excuses, condones. I had the military mentality, the army mentality of, you know, just get it done, do what you have to do. Don’t be late. It’s kind of taught in which was hard to overcome. And especially, you are familiar with, I’ve got my own standards, like, well, if I could do it, you can do it.
Debbie: But that’s not the case. Everybody is not the same. Everybody doesn’t test the same. Everybody doesn’t learn the same. I necessitate, I given to understand that in college. You know, you’ve got auditory learners, kinesthetic learners, visual learners. Some people can only learn one direction, while others can learn all the way or a variety of which. And I came to learn as I got to know more about mental health and their own lives. So, whenever students would approach me and is just like, search, I couldn’t come to class yesterday, like if they would say, so I really I couldn’t get out of bed, past me would have been like, well, that you missed class then. But now I’m like, OK, talk to me. Of trend, if they don’t talk to me, I can’t help them. I can’t work with them if they don’t have a conversation with me. So, I had a student in my current class who emailed me. It was like, I know I have not been in class. I’ve been going through some mental health issues. That’s what the email said. And can I still legislate this class to graduate this year? Now, the past may have been like , no, there’s nothing you can do. But now I know it’s like, you know what? Especially during a pandemic, sometimes even me who I do not have a mental illness. But I’ve experienced so much anxiety this year since the shutdown that I can understand it even more than just what I’ve learned from you and from your force. So I emailed him back. I’m like, absolutely, do what you can, you know, what can I do to help? We’ve got riches on campus. Sent an email saying, contact this person, such person or persons, or if all else flunks, you could qualify for a suffering retroactive withdrawal to where having a bad semester due to your mental health will not affect your points. You shouldn’t have to because you can’t help that.
Gabe: One of the things that many beings with mental illness push up against is that we don’t learn about those things, we don’t learn about the retroactive adversity withdrawal. People aren’t scooting to help us, whereas we see our peers, they write in and they say, you are familiar with, hey, I got in a car accident, I interrupt my leg or I was diagnosed with anything and any physical illness. And that really hurled me through a loop. Or I’ve squander a lot of time with this or even I had a loved one who was moved into hospice in this. And we envision all of these things and people are just coming out of the woodwork to help originate life better for them. And I are supportive of that. Like, I like this about the world. I don’t know when we got so the real world doesn’t give second possibilities. That’s bullshit. I watch plays all the time. There’s second possibilities all the time. There’s four downs in football. That’s four chances. Right. The life doesn’t render second, that’s not true. People file bankruptcy all the time and go on to lead huge lives. I precisely beings get divorced and remarried. That’s a second chance. Where did we get this idea that the world doesn’t give second risks? But putting that aside for a moment, I am securely for that for people with mental health issues because it’s a real issue, just like being diagnosed with a physical state condition.
Gabe: But we don’t get it. And what happens, Debbie, of course, is the problem is compounded. We come to you and we say we’re having a mental health issue. Can you help us? And “youre telling” , no, this is the real world. Well, you’re our teach. We believe that what you are saying is now true-life, that the real world doesn’t care about my malady and will not help me. So, unfortunately, a lot of people in your position have just told me, a vulnerable student looking at an permission figure like, you know, Professor Debbie. And we’re like, well, we might as well not try to get a job. My professor said, the world doesn’t care about me. I might as well not try to graduate because my prof said the world doesn’t care about me. Do you meet the difference? And what are your thoughts on that? Because your students do kind of look at you like, you know, doughy, wide seen and, well, stupid, and you’re steer them in a much better direction. That’s going to ensure that they’re not just sitting at home saying, well, some professor told me that the real world won’t help me, so I’m not even going to try.
Debbie: You know, and regrettably, the authorities have professors and educators out there who, in my opinion, shouldn’t even be in the teaching profession if they have that type of mentality. I know exactly what you signify and especially at the college height, because at universities, the people who are teaching a lot of the grades, especially ones with doctorates, they are experts in the field, whatever it is, you are familiar with, psychology, physics, chemistry, whatnot, they’re the experts. This is what they do. But they’ve never been teach how to educate, never been educated how to work with students and their needs. And I know here at my university, we do work on that. Our president has sent out emails, the dean of students has sent out emails, extremely now. And I genuinely do reckon the silver lining of this pandemic is that it has brought more parties understanding that mental health is a serious thing and a lot of beings are affected by it. And we need to do our segment to contribute to the health portion of it , not the illness portion of it. And by laying down those strict specifications like , no, I’m not going to let you take this assessment. No, I’m not going to work with you on that. That doesn’t help the student learn. It doesn’t help the student in life. Working with them, doing what you can on your portion to help them attained is what’s important. And I, I know that there are other coaches and profs out there who feel the same highway. Unfortunately, it’s not all of them.
Gabe: I apparently understand this concept of the world has to work the same way for beings with mental illness as it does for beings without mental illness. I certainly wouldn’t want to go to a doctor that the only reason they got their medical permission is because they just deterred claiming that they had mental illness or legitimately had mental illness. So they retained coming passed over and over again. I merely want to take a second and talk about that for a few moments, because obviously, just like physical health challenges can stop you from doing the things that you want to do. Mental health challenges can prevent you from doing the things that you want to do. How do you balance that? Because I know, Debbie, that you don’t want an EMT that just got a pass because they had, you know, bipolar affective disorder. I don’t and I don’t want anybody listening to this to think, oh, well, I can get anything I crave if I just claim that I have bipolar affective disorder or legitimately have bipolar, just like like
Debbie: It’s not getting what you demand, it’s getting the opportunity to be able to learn to the best of your ability. It’s why we have students with disabilities reserves now, for example, you are familiar with, and this goes into more cognitive features. But I had a student one time who she could not read a test question and understand what it said. So she did not do well on experiments, but because she went to the students with disabilities available resources and went registered there, she therefore was given the permission to have somebody predict her the questions because she could visualize it if it was read to her and she could understand it. And this runs for lots of things. I had a student one time who because I had a strict attendance policy, she had registered with students with disability business. So they don’t precisely tell you. They just say, please allow for the student to have more needs than normal. And the student came to talk to me is like, examine, sometimes I exactly can’t get out of berthed. You don’t have to report me. I promise you I will be here when I can. And I immediately I’m like, I’m here for you. You know, what can we do to make sure that you learn what you need to learn from this class? That’s all it is. It’s about sacrificing the students the opportunity to learn by their best means.
Gabe: There’s a acclaimed Einstein quote that I always butcher, and it mostly says that if the test for ability was climbing a tree, all fish would believe they were stupid. And, you know, I think about that a lot because, you are familiar with, oftentimes the space that we design learning is for the largest common denominator.
Debbie: Mm hmm,
Gabe: Right? We’re intent learn for everybody.
Debbie: You coach to the middle.
Gabe: Yeah, well, but there’s got to be somebody that’s on the margins. There’s got to be somebody that doesn’t have known that road that could still utterly do incredible things if they were given the opportunity. I appreciate what you’re saying, because I know that there’s a lot of listeners that want to try college. They want to try going a position. They want to try doing a lot of things. But so many beings in their lives have told them that it’s not for them, it’s not for them. They can’t get it on. The real world won’t help you. There’s no such thing as adaptations. Nobody’s going to give you a second chance that, you are familiar with, then there’s all kinds of other stigma and discrimination that comes into it. You’re too feeling. You’re too whiny. You need to be babied and teasing and on and on and on. And I time feel so bad because at one point all of that material applied to Gabe. It all applied to Gabe Howard. And if I wouldn’t have had other people to balance that out and say , no, Gabe, that’s not true, you need to get back on the colt. You need to try again. You need to start over and find where you fit. I would be what? Probably sitting on your couch right now. I make, it’s always the babe sister that culminates up taking in the ne’er do well sibling. But I heard that a great deal. And those enunciates are loud. Those articulations are loud and you already feel like garbage. What suggestion do you have to parties listening that are afraid to take that stair because they’re afraid of running into the people like you described, the people who are going to be like, gape, I’m not helping you. If you can’t do it, bolt you, you flunk. How do they advocate for themselves? What can they do if they run into the not Debbie, but the opposite of Debbie?
Debbie: I’m really glad that you asked me that, because especially from a university point of view, what I can say is if you’ve got something croaking, go talk to your schoolteacher, you know, at the beginning of class, introduce yourself, tell them know that you really want to learn, that you’re there. Whatever you feel comfortable telling them, you, by all means, do not need to tell them a thing. But I find that I’m more willing to work with somebody who is going to open up a line of communication with me, because if I sounds there is nothing from a student and they don’t cease me a line to say anything, then it’s like, well, I symbolize, I don’t know what’s going on. I don’t know how I can be used to. And I do my best are to achieve students as well. It’s hard in the online specifying, but if you’ve got something going on, talk to your teach. Let them know. If you are at a university, “ve been looking for” students with physical disabilities. It’ll be called something along those lines. At the bare minimum, at all public universities, I would assume private as well. But I don’t know. I don’t work in a private institution.
Debbie: But glance that up. You would be surprised how much it can be helpful in your college profession, because, for example, if you get measure anxiety, you sitting there, you get that time test, 30 hours. Oh, my goodness, I’m never going to get through this. And by the time you’ve gone through the mental block of dealing here with a 30 minute time limit, ten minutes have gone by. So now you have a 20 time time limit and that can be accommodated for, you are familiar with, they can offer a low-grade stimulus environment to where you make your measures , not in the classroom, but at one of their equipment. They can offer season and a half whatever it is you get a little bit more time on the test because you’re learning and giving your knowledge the same way. It really might make you a little more time to process it, to deal with anxiety or anything. But simply talk to your teaches. University specific, extend investigate the students disabilities resource. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you have a disability. It only means that you will learn better with some specific housings. That’s all that really means.
Gabe: I like how you told beings not to get hung up on texts, you know, so often we’re like, well, I’m not incapacitated, I don’t have a disability. I fight this all the time in mental health advocacy where instead of looking to solve the problem, we’re all push about what to call it. Let’s not get hung up on the names of things, because once you achieving this, you won’t care what the name of the organization, group or department is that you went through to get to where you want to be. Not to take it away from college, Debbie, which is very, very important. But in tasks, occupations, et cetera, go to human resources. Go to human resources, sitting there and say, hey, glance, I need this additional adaptation. There’s all kinds of laws for acceptable accommodations. And, you are familiar with, nine meters out of ten, your supervisor is very interested in giving you what you need to be productive. They don’t care that you need something that the other employees don’t if that thing that they give you utters you most productive. At the end of the working day, you’re there to reach something for them. If you have an open dialog with them and that helps you accomplish it, you know, they’re very good. Now, we understand stigma. Discrimination is a awfully, very real thing, which is why I recommend going to these services, going to the College Department of Disability, going to Human Assets, you know, bypassing your coworker, foreman, profs, et cetera, and starting the conversation over there. That behavior you have an advocate and you have assistance. If you do feel comfy, and again, it’s a personal choice, you are in a position to utterly talk to your bos or to your prof. And hopefully whomever you talk to has a brother with bipolar disorder who’s, like, certainly learned the ropes.
Debbie: That is helpful. I’m not going to lie.
Gabe: Debbie, you know these are tough questions when we talk about pedigrees. But do you think that my behaviour traumatized you in any way? Do you ever look back at your childhood and think, you are familiar with, that was, that was a lot going through that with my brother? That was a lot.
Debbie: I do not. Of route, I look at my childhood a lot differently than you look at your childhood.
Gabe: Yeah, my childhood was shocking,
Gabe: Like it was awful. You were a luminous spot, you were good.
Debbie: We had a great relationship. You “ve had my” firstly parole, you
Gabe: That’s true.
Debbie: Got me out of my crib every day.
Gabe: I did. Dropped her right on her heading every morning.
Debbie: No, but, you are familiar with, we’ve always had a great relationship. Even the few durations that we butt honchoes, I intend, but that’s what siblings do.
Gabe: Debbie, I’m glad that it didn’t affect you. I genuinely, genuinely am. Of direction, it would be perfectly understandable if it did, and it often does in numerous kinfolks, you know, siblings get left behind because all the resources “il go to” well, the troublemaker, the sick person. It’s not an extraordinary storey for siblings to be, frankly, traumatized by this. I’m glad that it didn’t impact you, but I suspect I am surprised. I was of the opinion that exactly witnessing some of these things would be questionable. Maybe I readied you for fighting. I don’t know.
Debbie: Well, you are familiar with, the eyes of a child, when you’re at that senility that I was, in elementary school, that’s your me duration, like everything’s focused on me. You haven’t advanced to the point where you start thinking about we.
Gabe: My behavior was very confusing to Mom and Dad. Yeah. It was just very confusing to them. And I’m really surprised that it didn’t impact you more. Do you think that momma and Dad could have directed it better talking to you? And I know we’re kind of throwing them for the purposes of the bus because they’re not here to defend themselves, but they told you nothing. I want, your friend simply up and left one day and they told you nothing. It doesn’t seem like it impacted you in any way. And for that, I’m very grateful. But it could have, leaving that kind of thing open. That could be a really big deal.
Debbie: That is our family, though, they never talk about the thing that is unpleasant or could make people feel happy. They try to spare everybody’s feelings. Doesn’t matter what it is, somebody is in the hospital. Don’t tell Gabe because he’s up in Ohio. He can’t croak anyways. He doesn’t need to know. It’ll simply be or don’t tell Debbie she’s over in Germany that Gabe was put in a hospice because he was suicidal. Let’s not tell her. She’s not around. She doesn’t need to know. You know, I do wish they would have had the conversations because perhaps I could have been taught earlier.
Gabe: Maybe it could have helped.
Debbie: Yeah, perhaps, I don’t know, but because we had a special relationship, I don’t know, I do feel that I do wish they would have had more of those difficult the talks with us. Luckily, I still turned out OK for the most part.
Debbie: Yeah, I’ll keep it. Pretty well.
Gabe: Well, you know, Debbie, you turned out great and, you know, people listen to the show and I, Debbie, I talk about their own families on the present all the time. And it is funny to hear you say, my family doesn’t talk about anything. We don’t want to make anybody, because you are 100% freedom. Everything that you said is true. But when I came to them and I was like, hey, I want to tell all the family mysteries publicly, they’re like, do it. And I was like, OK, well, we might be humiliated. And they were like, well, we don’t want other families to have the same problems as us. We’re strangely not reticent beings. You know, Mom detonations out singing opu in the middle of a department store just like it’s nothing. I precisely we’ve had public campaigns that nobody cares about. We’re thundering parties. But I’m really glad that you got to come on now, because I think sometimes beings think that all I do with my family is we just fight, we just fight. And we’ve come up with all these clever methods not to fight, but truly it’s just all passive aggressive and we’re disregard the elephant in the chamber. And while that is true, that that is how we reacted as children, let’s talk about our adult life for a minute. I don’t think we ignore elephants in the room anymore. I think we’ve ripened past that as a family. And while certainly sometimes, you are familiar with, Mom’s like, well, Grandma got sick last darknes, but I called you this morning, so you didn’t worry. OK, OK. But before I would have found out days later.
Debbie: When she was better.
Gabe: Yeah, there’s still a little bit, but I visualize mainly we pull the Band-Aid off a lot quicker. Do you think we’ve ripened as a family compared to how we behaved when we were younger?
Debbie: One hundred percent. I symbolize, Mom will tell me something I’m like, have you told Gabe more? Like, yep, he’s either he he’s my next announcement or I called him firstly. It’s like all right, don’t conceal it.
Gabe: Yeah, I’m really glad that you said that, don’t secrete it, you’re right, we figured it out that this was problematic and we say things like don’t conceal it, don’t sugarcoat it, let’s get it out of the route. I do think that all families should do this. I am glad that you came on so that people know that we do have the tough conferences. We exactly, we don’t have them during Thanksgiving dinner.
Gabe: That’s noodle time.
Gabe: That’s noodle age. Debbie, I love you so much.
Debbie: I love you too.
Gabe: I’m glad that “youre coming” on the appearance. How did it feel to be the Lisa? Man, I wish this was a video podcast that appear that you gave me, I exactly oh, I should have taken a illustration. Damsels and gentlemen, thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the Not Crazy podcast. Special thanks to my sister for tinge reaching for Lisa, who I predict will be back next week. My name is Gabe Howard. I am the author of Mental Illness Is an Asshole and Other Watchings, which of course is available on Amazon.com. But if you want to get it cheaper, if you want me to sign it and you demand Not Crazy podcast swag, then all you have to do is head over to gabehoward.com and buy it right there. It makes a great holiday gift. We’ll hear everybody next Tuesday.
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