Saturday, May 31, 2014

Rethinking the Definition of Autism and Aspergers

By Elise Ronan – The Times of Israel - Elise is the parent of two youngmen on the autism spectrum. She has been a volunteer special education advocate in …

Once again we have a mass murder and once again the media-whores are trying to blame it on aspergers, guns, misogyny and “white privilege.” When the reality is that the issue is mental illness and how it is treated, or not treated, in the United States. The family was fast to let the world know that their sociopath-narcissistic-highly disturbed-son had been diagnosed with aspergers. Not certain why that is even relevant. It is not that this family didn’t try to get the authorities involved. They actually alerted the police, who instead of searching his apartment or trying to get him involuntarily committed, found this murderer charming. Overly charming, by the way, is how most would describe every sociopath. Yet the question becomes, what is the point of letting everyone know about the autism diagnosis?

Yes, aspergers is the diagnosis of the moment. When doctors can’t figure out what category their patients fit into, they reach for something that is all encompassing. It just so happens that this decades all encompassing mental health diagnosis is aspergers. Before that it was ADD. Before that…who knows, but it was something. The problem too, is that psychiatry is a science that is not necessarily quantifiable in the same sense that something physical is quantifiable. Psychiatric definitions and understanding change as society changes. The “powers that be” in the psychiatric community consistently alter their view of what is a mental health disorder, and constantly change their opinion on what is, and is not, a cause for mental health concerns.

An additional problem that you have in the community is that so many of these book-learned people have never really dealt with autism or aspergers. They only read a book; took a class; heard a lecture. But they have no real experience in dealing with anyone with autism. A lot of times they simply look into the DSM and pick out something that sounds good and may be applicable to the situation at hand, something they simply cannot define for certain at the moment. That is exactly what happened with the boys when we visited one particular therapist.

Even though they had been given the dx of aspergers, when this particular therapist filled out his forms for insurance, he went into the DSM and looked for the dx that listed what he thought was more applicable to the boys. I argued with him that they had a relevant diagnosis that was appropriate. But he decided he knew better because as he pointed out to me, the DSM listed 4 applicable characteristics of “autism” instead of aspergers, which as far as he decided was more appropriate to the boys. He had never actually worked with, or had experience with, anyone with autism or aspergers. We went to him because he was used to working with adolescent males and highly recommended for that purpose. I had not realized until that moment that there really was a huge difference in approach when dealing with adolescent aspergeans and NTs.

Yes; we ended up leaving that therapist, but not because of this difference of opinion. When my younger son was having trouble with his 5th grade special ed teacher, instead of defending my son, he supported the teacher. Instead of coming up with some relevant classroom procedures that needed to be put into practice for my son, or relevant organizational skills that he had to learn, and that the teacher had to work on, this therapist decided that the teacher couldn’t be incompetent. The fact that he was having issues according to this therapist, had to mean that my son needed some heavy medication like risperdal or even an even stronger antipsychotic. (FYI- I am not against medication. I am against unnecessarily medicating.) According to this therapist there was no way that the teacher could be a gross incompetent,even though he had never met her, spoke with her or interacted with her on any level. Someone who is incapable of seeing the failings of another “professional,” is not someone you want working with your child.

As a note: I had not been told by the school district that this particular special ed teacher had been informed earlier in the year that she was not receiving tenure due to not meeting teaching standards. So she not only didn’t do her job vis-a-vis my son for the year,  but his entire class. (He was a fully included student with special support. And because the support was inadequate the entire class suffered.) In fact, she actually lost my son one day as well and tried to blame it on other people. The district did force her to go on medical leave half way through the year and put in a substitute, which helped the situation greatly. But unfortunately he had already been set back tremendously in his development. It took years and some very hands-on competent teachers to bring him back into the groove.

Meanwhile, I have been having a change of mind. The fact that the definition of autism/aspergers has been reworked by the DSM may not in the long run be entirely bad. I know that the aspergers community is very angry and there are psychiatrists who are unhappy about the methodology used to decide upon these new criteria. But perhaps when it is harder to diagnose someone with aspergers/autism, therapists and psychiatrists will actually have to figure out what is truly going on with a patient and not just decide that everyone with social issues must have aspergers/autism.

Autism is not simply about someone not understanding social issues. Autism is an entirely different brain wiring- a different operating system so to speak. It means that people see the world differently and interact with the world differently than an NT. It means they learn differently and work differently. It means they are able to think outside the limited box that the world has set up for itself. Autism does not mean that those with the dx are sociopathic, psychotic, violent or devoid of the ability to function within society on a healthy basis. These are all very different mental health issues. Quite frankly no, every sociopath is not an aspergean and every aspergean is not a sociopath. In fact one has nothing to do with the other.

The problem that you face is that the psychiatric community has made a habit of giving our children a list of dxes. These co-morbid issues are what cause the problems in society. While our children may have aspergers, they can also have OCD, anxiety, ADD, bi-polar, schizophrenia and (sadly) may even be a sociopath. But premeditated violent tendencies associated with the most extreme forms of these mental health issues have nothing to do with autism. They have to do with the comorbid issues. In fact, most of these co-morbid issues also do not result in violence or outward aggression either.

The interesting issue is whether under the new DSM definition would any of those with the most severest form of mental health issues even have a comorbid dx of any kind of autism? Would the psychiatric community be forced to actually reevaluate their patients to ensure that there is a real review of what is going on with their patients instead of dumping them into the mental health issue of the moment? Will there be more oversight and more accountability of the psychiatric profession instead of the media and society going  “autism” monster hunting?

Frighteningly, we have to be ever vigilant that the “witch-hunters” do not once again try to come after our children because of the reporting by an irresponsible media, police inaction and the psychiatrists who did nothing to stop a murderous rampage. My boys have no problem with telling everyone they have aspergers. They are proud of who they are. The problem is, that society’s ignorance about mental health and autism causes others to have problems with them, and it is this lack of societal education that is the real threat to their future.

A version of this blog post originally appeared in Raising Asperger’s Kids

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The AD, ADD, ADHD, Autism, Aging… Inflammation and Nutrition Connection

“We live too short and we die too long!” …Dr. Myron Wentz

By Marion Algier – THITW and Ask Marion

The rate of occurrences of Alzheimer's-Dementia (AD), ADD, ADHD, Autism, and debilitating Aging symptoms are through the roof. Everyone I know either suffers from one of these conditions (themselves); has a child, grandchild, parent, or grandparent who is afflicted; or they know someone, if not several some-ones, within their close circle that suffers from one or more of these diseases and conditions.

We are drowning in epidemics…

Having become the caregiver for a father-in-law who suffers from Alzheimer’s as well as heart disease; a mother-in-law with RA and onset dementia, who is in complete denial about either of their conditions or her part in the development of those infirmities; and a husband who has developed several afflictions that are generally explained away as normal aging, this has all become very personal.  I have far too many friends and associates with children who suffer from ADD, ADHD, Autism… including Asperger's Syndrome (AS) and now I’m surrounded by the 80+ set, not to ponder the numbers and perhaps even the connection(s).

I have long believed that all these conditions and a lot more are related to a combination of diet, vaccines, too many meds, noise pollution and stress, etc…  a long list.  But we, who have become oblivious observers of our own lives have been sold ‘the official’ causes of these afflictions by Big Pharma, Big Agriculture, Big Business and a ruling class and their media minions who think they are smarter than we are or that we are ‘useless eaters’ just taking up space.

I recently went on the Adkins Diet to lose some weight I had slowly put on over several years and virtually over-night I noticed how much better I felt in general.  The Adkins diet had always worked for me when I needed to shed a few pounds, but this was the first time that I really took notice of how much better I felt while I was on it; perhaps it is my age or that I’m just more aware these days?  But I did a little more digging…

I am fairly stubborn!  My husband would say that is an understatement! So once I started my new eating regiment, I went 3+ months without ever cheating. But since, I have eaten carbs on a few special occasions and at a few events when I didn’t want to put anyone out.  Each time I noticed that I felt sluggish, tired or just a little out of sorts. Celiac Disease, requiring sufferers to eat gluten free, is also at epidemic proportions. And after Elizabeth Hasselbeck, formerly of The View and now co-host of Fox and Friends, appeared on The Factor as part of her book tour for The G-Free Diet: A Gluten-Free Survival Guide, Bill O’Reilly, not a Celiac sufferer, decided to give up wheat products to see if it would help him feel better in general.  He reported the same results that I had after going on Adkins.  He felt better and lost 20-pounds without changing anything else in his lifestyle… and he admits that since he doesn’t have a gluten allergy he does cheat once in awhile, but like me always feels a bit bloated or sluggish when he does.

Recently I watched a television program with Dr. Oz and then a day later I turned on PBS to find a special with Dr. David Perlmutter, a renowned neurologist, author and president of the Perlmutter Health Center. Perlmutter is known for advocating a functional and holistic approach toward treating brain disorders and is a frequent contributor to the Huffington Post, The Daily Beast and Mind Body Green.

At the Perlmutter Health Center, they deal with a variety of medical problems including arthritis, elevated cholesterol, bowel and digestive disorders, obesity, cardiovascular problems, respiratory disorders, including asthma, chronic fatigue syndrome, allergies, environmental sensitivity, cancer and a wide variety of other illnesses as well as a long list of neurological problems including epilepsy, stroke, Parkinsonism, dementia (including Alzheimer’s disease), myasthenia gravis, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, dystonia, joint pain and inflammation, other movement disorders, and neuropathy.

Changing our dietary habits and the eating habits of our children could also help reduce the symptoms of ADD, ADHD and even Autism.

In the PBS special Dr. Perlmutter pulled together what I had discovered independently through my research and was actually feeling myself.  Bottomline: Wheat (gluten), carbs, and sugar are silently killing our brains, causing inflammation throughout our bodies and creating food induced hyperactivity thereby contributing to the “A“ epidemics:  Alzheimer’s-Dementia (AD), ADD, ADHD, Autism (ASD) and aging.

Dr. Perlmutter points out that most of what Americans have been told about eating from the food pyramid they taught us in school, to shifting everyone to low fat diets, to giving up eating eggs, and to putting half of America on cholesterol medicine is wrong.

We need to cut our carbs, gluten, and sugar and pay attention to the sources of our food, plus add more good fats into our diet. 

Shop the outside aisles of the market and with the exceptions of a few spices, etc., check out and go home. Read the labels of everything pre-prepared, frozen, boxed or canned that you do consider buying. Put in a garden, using non-GMO seeds, and create a compost heap for fertilizer. (There are some amazing options even for apartment dwellers, window box herbs, and many cities and towns now have community garden plots.)  Eat less but better quality meat; try to buy wild or range grazed meat and poultry (and eggs) and wild and stream caught fish… or consider taking up hunting, fishing and gathering.  You can supplement your protein needs with legumes and nuts.

The book Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health (Cookbook) rightfully  blamed wheat for the American epidemic of obesity.  And Dr. Permutter’s book Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth about Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar -- Your Brain's Silent Killers deals specifically with the effects of too many carbs, wheat, and gluten on the brain.

grain brain book Looking at a Better Way

Dr. Perlmutter started looking at the role diet plays in brain health after he got tired of treating his patients’ symptoms with drugs, which at the time was the only tool in his arsenal. He describes it like trying to get rid of smoke while leaving the fire burning.

In the past decade he learned that the brain is extremely sensitive to the food we eat and that our diet plays a pivotal role in our brain health.

He also learned that brain cells do replace themselves, but once you have reached the Alzheimer’s stage it is too late.

Too Many Carbs, Too Little Fat

As we’ve moved towards a low-fat diet high in grains, the kind recommended in the USDA food pyramid below, we’ve traded in eating fat for eating more carbs. We have never before been exposed to this level of carbohydrate consumption in human history and this experiment is not going well.  Plus, much of the wheat, corn, and soy produced today has been genetically modified (GMO).

In a recent report on the 5-worst food companies there were 3 glaring occupants on the list: Monsanto, Nestle, and Coca Cola, that should jump out and cause everyone to both take note and do their homework.

food pyramid chart

High blood sugar levels correlate directly with brain shrinkage of the hippocampus, the seat of memory and the first target of Alzheimer’s. Perlmutter states quite emphatically that there is no treatment whatsoever for Alzheimer’s and that drugs flat-out don’t help.

If you begin to mentally lose it in your 60′s and 70′s, sometimes even earlier, it becomes very hard to reverse the trend, so it is much wiser to take steps to prevent mental decline sooner than later.

Excess carbs create inflammation and free radicals, two major causes of brain aging.

Perlmutter found in his practice that nothing is worse for your brain than a low-fat diet. It contains too many carbohydrates and too little brain-healthy fat. He promotes olive oil, coconut oil, butter, avocados, grass-fed meat, wild salmon, and eggs. (No margarine, trans fats or vegetable oil).  Have you ever thought about Canola Oil and asked yourself… what is a canola?

In his practice Dr. Permutter puts patients on a diet that is 50-60% good fats. The brain is 70% fat by dry weight and he finds this much fat is ideal. Glucose is considered the main fuel for the brain, but our brains are quite happy to burn fat which he refers to as a “super fuel” for the brain.

One of the biggest ongoing debates in nutrition is what are the best ratios of fat, carbs, and protein. Perlmutter cites a JAMA study that followed two groups for 12 months. One group was on the diet popularized by Dr. Atkins — a low carb/high fat/high protein diet. The second group followed Dr. Ornish’s low fat/low protein/high carbohydrate diet. This diet is identical to the ultra-low fat diet being promoted in the book Power Foods for the Brain.

For those of us who have been brainwashed into believing that low-fat is good, it may come as a shock that the people who followed the Atkins diet did better on all health markers including triglycerides, good cholesterol, and blood sugar levels.

Perlmutter reminds us to think of cholesterol as our brain’s friend. Low cholesterol levels increases the risk of suicide, depression, and dementia. The risk of dementia is reduced by 70% in those with high cholesterol. You read that right – high cholesterol reduces risk of dementia.

The Problem With Gluten

wheat in test tubes

Perlmutter appreciates that the book Wheat Belly made the public aware of the profound modification of wheat itself.

In the past 50 years, wheat has been changed to contain up to 50 times more gluten than it did when our ancestors baked their first loaf of bread.

We are biologically unprepared to handle this big of a change in such a short period of time. For arguments sake, Dr. Perlmutter states that humans have been around for 2.6 million years yet didn’t start eating wheat and gluten in any form until about 10,000 years ago; a mere blip in our entire existence! Or .004% to be more precise.

Gluten is a protein most commonly associated with wheat but can also be found in other grains like rye, oats, and barley; prepared foods of all kinds; and even in medications.

It’s been known for decades that gluten can cause a long list of neurological problems including dementia, headaches, seizures, tremors, depression, memory loss, and epilepsy in those who are gluten-sensitive. But what hasn’t been realized until recently is how ubiquitous gluten sensitivity is. If eating gluten tears up your gut, you know you have a problem. But it turns out that most people have no obvious digestive upset from gluten, so this is not a reliable indicator of gluten sensitivity.

Grain Brain makes a solid case for how eating more grains and carbohydrates of all kinds, and less goods fats, is taking a toll on our collective brain health. And it offers suggestions for what you can do about it.

Additionally, Dr. Permutter points out the need for vitamin D in our diets and that when watching our diets, it is the glycemic index that we should be concerned with.  In an example, he points out that between the four foods: wheat bread, white bread, white sugar and a candy bar, that reality is quite different from what most people think. When looking at the glycemic index the worst choice of the four foods listed is the wheat bread, not the candy bar.  In fact, the candy bar, not that he is promoting eating candy, is the best choice out of that group which goes in this order: candy bar, white sugar, white bread, wheat bread… when looking at the glycemic index.

Perlmutter also talks about the worst breakfast choice, for anyone, being a glass of orange juice and a bowl of packaged cereal.  A glass of orange juice isn’t much different than having a coke for breakfast.  Then we add a bowl of additional sugar, gluten and preservatives = cereal, covered with milk (casein… see below) and sending our kids to school sugared and carbed up… And for children with ADD, ADHD or Autism (ASD) it is even worse, plus then we add drugs into the equation to theoretically calm them down, and we wonder why they can’t learn or why they act out.

Several recent studies published in the International Journal of Attention Disorders support a connection between ADD, ADHD and Autism and the broader eating patterns of a ‘Western-style’ diet as well. It has been know for quite some time that food coloring and dyes should be avoided by people with ADD and ADHD.  And according to Craig Kendall, author of The Asperger's Syndrome Survival Guide, gluten and casein free (GFCF) diets help overcome Asperger’s Syndrome symptoms, and symptoms of children suffering from any form of ASD, including improving their behavior. Casein is a protein found in milk. Proponents of a GFCF diet believe people with Autism have a "leaky gut," or intestine, which allows parts of gluten and casein to seep into the bloodstream and affect the brain and central nervous system. The belief is that this may actually lead to Autism or magnify its symptoms.

We need to cut our sugar levels by cutting out/down carbs, gluten and sugar and adding fat from good sources. (No margarine or vegetable oil). And we need to go back to a natural diet… vegetables, fruit (in moderation), seeds, nuts, natural fats, range raised meat and poultry, wild fish, and range-eggs.  And, the most important brain anti-oxidant is cholesterol.  That’s right… cholesterol.

Cholesterol, the most important brain anti-oxidant, has been taken out of our diets, like good fats.  It is imperative for natural brain function. Eggs are one of the best things we can eat and c-reactive protein causes inflammation and is a direct contributor to the development Alzheimer’s Disease, if you are pre-deposed or added to other factors. Yet the trends and diets that we have all been sold for decades now have us doing and consuming exactly the opposite says Dr. Permutter.

Dr. Oz, a former Oprah team-member… not sure of their present relationship, actually pointed out that with the coming of ObamaCare, if it is not ultimately scrapped or implodes on its own, there will be a need and a move toward more holistic and homeopathic treatments, alternative medicine and healthier eating; perhaps the only good thing that ObamaCare will bring. (Remember, Dr. Oz was a major part of the promotional team for the H1N1 vaccine, but his wife and daughters like the Obama girls, did not take that vaccine.) But now physicians like Dr. Oz with an array of featured guests and experts, plus others including Dr. Mercola, Dr. Sears, and Dr. Perlmutter, who have always looked for alternatives are activiely promoting natural solutions. People are increasingly looking to places like Sanoviv, an alternative, holistic and integrative health facility built in Rosarito, Mexico by Myron Wentz, Ph.D, a microbiologist and immunologist who invented the test kit for Epstein Barr and founded Gull Laboratories, USANA and Sanoviv, S.A. de C.V. (Sanoviv) …because the AMA wouldn’t allow it in the U.S.

Coffee is all of a sudden being promoted as a good thing, Oulong tea and peaches (without sugar) have anti-Cancer properties. Vinegar and pharmaceutical grade hydrogen peroxide have great healing powers. The list of natural cures and preventative remedies is endless and suddenly being promoted instead of destroyed or hidden. See Tales of a Shaman's Apprentice.

America, the winds of change are blowing; many of them not good but some offer some great possibilities amidst the destruction of what was the greatest healthcare system in the world at its core, at least before the Rockefellers and other corruptocrats got their hands on it.

I am not a health practitioner, but have explored alternative health solutions all my life and I definitely have spent more time studying nutrition than physicians do in Med School. I have also researched and sold several holistic health products and high-end all natural nutritionals.  And when my daughter developed ulcerative colitis we took her to Sanoviv, an alternative healthcare facility outside the United States, where I took every class and seminar they allowed me to attend during her treatment. There is a place for surgery and some medications, but because of Big Pharma, Big Business, Big Agriculture and corruption, Americans are over medicated and sicker than they should be… Why?  So that we ultimately can be put on drugs or sold an agenda.  It is all about money and control! The information is out there; we all have to become more proactive and use the common sense that God gave us.  If it feels or sounds wrong or questionable… it probably is!

About The Author:  I am 61-years-young and am in perfect health (and yes, I am knocking on wood as I say that).  I have never been admitted to a hospital; I was delivered by a mid-wife.  I, as well as my children… the two and four-legged ones, only received the immunizations and vaccines that they absolutely needed; I did my homework in depth long before there was an Internet.  I, as well as my children, never ate store bought, pre-fabed, commercial baby food (or commercial pet food), let alone the glue they call formula that is given to most American babies these days. (Nor did I use baby wipes, floor and rug cleaners with chemicals in them or pesticides… I used old school warm water and mild soap instead of wipes, and nontoxic natural-based vinegar and orange oil type  cleaners and for pest control.)  I also have always done the majority of my marketing from the outer aisles of the grocery store. And even though we were suburb dwellers, my dad and brother hunted and fished and much of our other meat (now and when I was a child) was purchased from a butcher or supplier who guaranteed antibiotic and steroid free meat… and money was an object through much of my life so I learned to be creative.

I have only been to a doctor less than 20-times in my entire life if you do not count the well-baby checks and for the necessary shots I did get as a kid. I have only ever had one mammogram and 2 pap smears and I don’t get flu shots, nor have I ever been on any long-term medications and probably have taken no more than a few bottles of aspirin or the like in 60+ years… and I am just now going through menopause. The only (out-patient) surgery I have had was when I slipped on some black ice and broke my ankle.

My daughter was perfectly healthy as well, at least until she had to have what seemed like an endless batch of shots to travel around the world with the Semester at Sea (SAS) program and after getting one last shot on-board (from an unknown source) after a Japanese Encephalitis outbreak about halfway through the sail, she came back with severe ulcerative colitis.  Coincidence?  We took her to Sanoviv.

My husband, who pretty much beat up his body through sports… football, baseball, basketball, snow and water skiing, racquetball, competitive swimming, etc., has recently developed related health issues but it seems to be the inflammation that has attacked those previous injuries and weak spots.

I consider myself lucky in many ways and was blessed to be born healthy and to have parents who made all the right food and health choices for me and my siblings… at least until we were old enough to be able to follow their advice or choose to make our own wrong decisions.

My mother always cooked at home; going out to dinner was a rare treat.  We never drank soda.  And doctors & dentists were visited only as needed.  As a side job, my father even cleaned the office for our family doctor, an OD until forced to become an MD, who agreed with that philosophy; a pattern I carried through with my own children.  None of us kids smoked, we drank in moderation when we got old enough and nobody did drugs. I played softball, tennis and snow skied but never felt the need to over-tax my body or to fry my skin in the sun. We ate in moderation so although I love sweets, I have only been on a diet 4-times in my life (3 of which were on the Adkins diet after age 40), and I now plan to stay on a modified version of that diet for life.

*My in-laws on the other hand, even with their new found knowledge, fight me daily about eating margarine instead of butter; over-salting their food… even though my father-in-law suffers from heart disease and is suppose to be on a salt-free diet; they seemingly fell for every new campaign that came down the pike throughout their lives; and they refuse to entertain the idea of cutting down on the medications and number of doctor visits.  The system of eldercare has been an eye-opening journey in itself and the affect of the systematic brainwashing on that generation is both frightening and phenomenal.

Unless you are born with a serious defect or disease or are injured in later life, I truly believe that our choices and those we make for our children define our health, especially if we make the wrong choices or don’t do our homework!  And therefore I am writing a new book, “ The Common Sense Path to Good Health”.  Somewhere along the way we have lost our common sense in far too many areas!

Related and Sources: 

Eating antibiotic-fed animals can cause health problems in humans 

11 Food Ingredients Banned Outside the U.S. That Americans Eat 

Margarine Linked to Lower IQs in Kids 

The Drug Story 

Western Medicine - Forbidden Cures

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Memorial Day and Summer Cautions and Safety Tips For Pet Owners

JOMP:  Memorial Day is generally considered the unofficial start of summer.  It is a season of fun and leisure but can also be a time when pets are forgotten or injured, amidst the fun, games, activates and heat.  Our pets our family members and all animals under our car are our responsibility so this is a quick reminder that  pet (animal) health should be kept in the forefront of our minds to help ensure a safe season for all.

Memorial Day is often filled with travel, parties, parades that often include pets and fun under the sun, so  while it is fun to include our pets in our activates, we can't forget to take the extra steps to make sure they' are safe and protected.

Below are the top five top safety tips from the ASPCA that pet owners need to remember this summer:

  • Travel in Style: Traveling can be highly stressful for our pets. If you're planning a road trip, prep your pet in advance by taking short rides in the car and getting them used to riding in a crate or car harness. "Pet owners should never leave their animals unattended in a parked vehicle," said Dr. Louise Murray, vice president of the ASPCA Animal Hospital. "Parked cars, even with windows open, become very hot in a short amount of time, and this can lead to heatstroke or death." If you must travel by air, putting your pet in cargo isn't ideal. If this is unavoidable, take great care to purchase the required crate and tell every airline employee you are traveling with a pet in cargo to avoid your pet being left on the tarmac or outside during extreme weather.
  • Keep Cool: Dogs and cats can become dehydrated quickly, so give them plenty of water when is the weather is hot.. Also, make sure your pet has a shady place to escape the sun and don't let your dog linger outdoors, especially on hot asphalt. Being so close to the ground, your dog's body can heat up quickly, and sensitive paw pads can get burned.
  • Watch What They Eat:  Summertime can be perfect for backyard barbecues or parties, but remember that the food and drink you serve your guests may be poisonous to pets. Keep alcoholic beverages away from pets, and remember that the snacks you serve your friends should not be treats for your pet. Any change of diet - even for one meal - may give your dog or cat severe digestive ailments. Make sure to avoid raisins, grapes, onions, chocolate and products with the sweetener xylitol, since these are poisonous to pets, the no-no foods for pets.
  • Beware of "High-Rise Syndrome": During warmer months, many animal hospitals and veterinarians see an increase in injured animals as a result of "High-Rise Syndrome," which is when pets fall or jump out of windows and are seriously or fatally injured. Keep all unscreened windows in your home closed and make sure screens are tightly secured.
  • Love the Leash: Warm weather can inspire longer walks, but while this is exciting for both dog and owner, it's important that dogs are always kept on leashes with collars and up-to-date ID tags to protect them from getting loose and injuring themselves or others.

Also, be sure to carry the numbers for your dog(s), cat(s) and other pets’ local veterinarian, the 24-Hour emergency pet clinic and the ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 for immediate assistance if needed.

Below are some fun Memorial Day pet fun photos from 2013:

Fun Patriotic Memorial Day Pet Photos

Saucy Lady

Patriotic Horse

All American Dog

Patriotic Ferret

Is This Good

Patriotic Kitten

Patriotic Dachsies

Patriotic Gilla Monster

Festive Fido

Cool Patriotic Cat

Patriotic Bull Dog

Patriotic Donkey

Patriotic Cool Dude

Patriotic-Parrot 2

Patriotic Dog 3

Patriotic Piggie

Patriotic Retreiver

Patriotic Cat

Patriotic Doggie

Yeepet gallery Pets

Patriotic Chi

Yeepet gallery Pets

By Marion Algier – Just One More Pet (JOMP) – UCLA Shutterbug 

Ronald Reagan Honors America and Our Troops Past and Present 

Memorial Day 2014 

Photos From the Frontlines – The Dogs of War

Hero Dogs of 9/11 

Memorial Day Weekend Health Safety Tip Reminders 

Nation's oldest Memorial Day Parade returns to Bay Ridge

Military Heroes and Their Dogs

Sergeant Stubby

1st national monument for war dogs honors four-legged pup soldiers of World War II and beyond

Oldest Living American Has Some Perfectly Simple Advice Worth Following

Happy Birthday, Mother Talley!

By  Kate Abbey-Lambertz  -  HuffPo:  Jeralean Talley is America's oldest living woman on record. And as she turns 115, we'd all do well to follow her example.

"Mother Talley," as she's sometimes called, celebrates her birthday Friday. Born in 1899, the supercentenarian has seen three centuries, and still seems to be going strong. According to the Associated Press, she's visiting the doctor Friday, but still feels healthy.

The Gerontology Research Group keeps a record of the validated longest-living people in the world. According to the GRG, Misao Okawa, who is 116 and lives in Japan, is the oldest living person. Talley is a close second.

Talley lives in Inkster, Mich. but was born Jeralean Kurtz in Montrose, Ga. She lived on a farm where she picked cotton and peanuts, according to Time. She moved to Michigan in 1935 and married her husband, Alfred Talley, in 1936. The two were together 52 years before he died.

It's not surprising that Talley gained some wisdom over her 115 years. Here are some of her simple, but timeless, words to live by.

Follow the Golden Rule.

Talley has repeatedly given the advice that you should treat others how you want to be treated. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you, that's my way of living," she told WJBK-TV last year.

Always have a sense of humor.
Talley apparently tried to drive just one time, and failed miserably, as she tells the Detroit Free Press. But telling the story of that failed attempt, complete with a few expletives, cracks her up -- and us, too.

Keep active.

Talley went bowling until she was 104, and still has an annual fishing trip.

But don't be afraid to occasionally indulge.

Talley is known for making headcheese, a jellied loaf made of various pig parts, and has a sweet tooth, according to Time.

Have strong beliefs.

Talley's faith is a large part of her life, and she'll be celebrating her birthday at her local church this weekend. When asked why she lives so long, she told the Free Press, "It's all in the good Lord's hands."

Surround yourself with loved ones.

Talley was married for half a century. Now, she lives with her daughter and has great-great-grandchildren. One of her favorite activities is playing with her young great-great-grandson, according to the Free Press.

Be humble, and act wisely.

"I don't have much education, but what little sense I got, I try to use it," Talley told WJBK. There's a powerful message in her modesty.


Go Granny Go!! 

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Obamacare Slashes Senior Home Health Care Services

Meet Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel: Deny Coverage to Elderly an Disabled for the Greater Good – But don’t forget… Sarah Palin was crazy…

Complete Lives System by Ezekial Emanuel

ObamaCare… the Kiss of Death - Collection of OBAMA SCARE - Articles U CAN NOT MISS!

Obama Embraces 'Death Panel' Concept in Medicare Rule

Obamacare to Herd Disabled Seniors to Bare-Bones Medicaid Plans

"People 70 and over will not be treated under Obamacare… and you thought DEATH PANELS were gone"– Updated

Soylent Green Anyone???

The 'kill granny' bill

The Return of Mediscare

On the Road to Death Panels

ObamaCare for Seniors: Sorry, You're Just Not Worth It

“Death Panel” Three Years Later 


Meet the ObamaCare Mandate Committee

Obamacare rationing panels an ‘immediate danger to seniors’: former AMA president

“Death Panel” Three Years Later

Obama Embraces 'Death Panel' Concept in Medicare Rule

1 in 3 Seniors Dies with Alzheimer's or Other Dementia - Updated

The Bilderberg Group’s Connection To Everything In The World – Updated

People of Faith

Obama Regulation Czar, Cass Sunstein, Advocated Removing People’s Organs Without Explicit Consent

Obama’s "Science Czar" Advocates De-Developing the US to World of Zero Growth

Video: More Scary Stuff From Obama’s Science Czar

Holdren Says Constitution Backs Compulsory Abortion

Holdren: Seize Babies Born to Unwed Women

List of Obama’s Czars Plus Two – Updated: 8.18.09 – Remember when the Czars were the hot topic… but they overwhelmed us and forgot them to do they scary dirty jobs…

Science Czar John P. Holdren – Updated 9.2.09 

ObamaCare for Seniors: Sorry, You're Just Not Worth It 

Checkout: ObamaCare Survival Guide

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Did NSA Blackmail Roberts to OK ObamaCare?

Klayman: 'Tyranny is greater today than in 1776'!

Govt EYE

U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts may have been blackmailed to approve Obama care after being spied on by the NSA and CIA, says Larry Klayman, the attorney who has come to be known as “the NSA slayer” for his successful legal battles against the National Security Agency.

 WND - May 18, 2014 – Cross Posted at AskMarion

U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts may have been blackmailed to approve Obamacare after being spied on by the NSA and CIA, says Larry Klayman, the attorney who has come to be known as “the NSA slayer” for his successful legal battles against the National Security Agency.

During an appearance Sunday night on Aaron Klein’s New York City radio show on 970 The Answer, Klayman suggested the blackmail possibility when asked by a caller if the Supreme Court could be sued for its approval of the Affordable Care Act.

“Unfortunately, there’s no way to sue the Supreme Court for decisions that it makes. There should be, and there should be a way to remove these justices for making decisions like that,” explained Klayman, the founder of Judicial Watch who now heads Freedom Watch.

Chief Justice John Roberts

“But let’s take this possibility: Why did Chief Justice Roberts at the eleventh hour change his decision? He was going to side with the other justices and find that Obamacare was unconstitutional. Is it something that was dug up on him by the NSA or the CIA? Was that used against him to blackmail him?

“These are the kinds of things [the government is doing], and that’s why it’s so scary what’s going on with the NSA and the CIA. It can happen in a democracy. So that may help explain it, and perhaps we can reach these issues through the NSA cases that we brought, the NSA/CIA cases. I intend to get the truth on this.”

Klein himself sounded taken aback by Klayman’s suggestion.

“This is actually a staggering response to believe the government could have spied on a Supreme Court justice … and that information is somehow utilized … against him to pass Obamacare,” Klein said. “This is huge.”

Klayman warned that “every aspect of Americans’ lives is being accessed and monitored by the government.”

“It’s not just telephone metadata that’s being monitored,” he alleged. “They’re also listening to the content, that’s coming out in recent weeks.

“I’m a lawyer. I have an attorney-client privilege, and I can no longer talk to my clients on the telephone and expect that there’s any confidentiality. It changes the whole nature of how you operate.

“We also know that the NSA and CIA – as Communist China, as Russia can do, as any sophisticated country – they can turn your cell phone on anytime and listen to you. And they do.”

Listen to Part 1 of Larry Klayman’s appearance with Aaron Klein HERE

Klayman said such activity is “simply not acceptable in a democracy.”

“And even if they are not accessing our records directly, the fact that the American people know about it, and it’s been documented what’s been going on, it has a chilling effect on our ability to communicate and our ability to criticize the government or take strong action against the government.

“If the government wants to destroy you, it has to access the information that it can use to do it, and that’s why this is so frightening. [It has] a greater capability than King George III had in 1776. The tyranny is greater today than it was at the time of the American Revolution.”

Regarding the status of the legal cases against government spying, Klayman said, “The bottom line is this: Our so-called government is trying to delay final adjudication of the constitutionality of the CIA and NSA’s programs, and as a ruse, President Obama is claiming he wants to make modifications to those programs. They’re not modifications at all.”

Klayman also said it’s not just the Obama administration citizens should be concerned about.

“Can you imagine Hillary Clinton having the power to use this?” he asked.

Listen to Part 2 of Larry Klayman’s appearance with Aaron Klein HERE

No wonder the White House counsel picks show Obama preparing to be impeached…


Was Justice Roberts Intimidated Into Voting for ‘ObamaCare’? Senator Mike Lee Presents the Evidence 

Supreme Court Upholds Obamacare…

Her Baby Died During Birth, But Mom Asked To Hold Him; Two Hours Later, She Heard A Gasp

You won’t believe this.  Really.  It’s a miracle.

By Bristol Palin - Patheos

According to the U.K.’s Daily Mail, when Jamie was pronounced dead, the doctor handed him to his mother, Kate, so that she could say goodbye to her son. Kate took Jamie into her arms and tearfully caressed her tiny son.

She and her husband spoke to him, telling him what his name was, and that he had a sister. She told him the things that she had wanted to do with him throughout his life. Kate held Jamie on her chest, skin-to-skin, and occasionally he would gasp – a reflex the doctor said was normal after death.

But Kate held on to Jamie for two hours, cradling and talking to him, and slowly she witnessed him beginning to show signs of life.

You won’t believe what happened next:


Video:  Clinically Dead Baby Revived by Mother’s Touch

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Former Abortion Clinic Owner: We Pushed Sex Ed on Kids to Create a Market for Abortion

Washington DC (LiveActionNews) — For six years Carol Everett operated four abortion clinics in Texas.

As reported by The Catholic Register, Everett earned a commission for every abortion in addition to a share of the fees charged by each clinic. She says she sold abortion and made big bucks off of the “cash cow” of abortion. A new abortion clinic, she said at the annual Rose Dinner for the National March for Life in Ottawa, would make enough money to pay for itself in a single month.


The clinics’ system to make the quick cash was quite simple. The abortionist would move from one room to the next, performing abortion after abortion, often without cleaning up between abortions, according to Everett.

In addition, Everett said that the counselors at the clinics are more like telemarketers. They are trained to schedule abortions and use wording to eliminate a potential clients’ fears and objections concerning abortion.

Everett, who left the abortion industry after a Christian business counselor she hired lead her to Christ, also talked about how damaging government-funded sex education programs are. In her speech at the Rose Dinner, she took aim at the programs for stealing away the innate modesty of children and creating a rift between children and their parents. She says that the programs aim to teach children that talking to their parents about sex is uncomfortable and then they offer to be the people the children turn to for support. She says that girls are then provided with low dose birth control, which is ineffective if not taken at the same time each and every day, which is close to impossible for any teenager. When the girls get pregnant, they then turn to abortion clinics, she says.

Once Everett admitted to herself that she was a “baby-killing” and “woman-killing woman” she finally noticed the harm she and her abortion clinics were doing for a quick buck. For the first time, she took notice of the “girls sitting in the corner crying” at the clinic. She saw how her own abortion had lead her down this path of pain. She turned away from the industry and started a foundation to help women and girls facing crisis pregnancies.

Everett credited the closing of 28 abortion clinics in Texas to God and she believes that new legislation will lead to more closings and more lives saved. Without the money from abortions, these clinics that claim to exist to help women, will close. Something all pro-lifers look forward to.

LifeNews Note: Nancy is a work at home mom who writes about parenting, special needs children, and the right to life. She is the lucky mother of two spirited little girls, one who has cystic fibrosis, and she spends any free moment she can find fundraising for a cure for CF. You can read her personal blog at Reprinted from Live Action New

Baby Noah Perfectly Formed at 12 wks 5 days

 Baby Noah Perfectly Formed at 12-Weeks and 5 Days


New Placement gives DCF hostage Justina Pelletier more privileges

source: Facebook

Justina Pelletier and Her Parents.

CommunitiesDigitalNews: CONNECTICUT, May 14, 2014 —  Last Monday, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts moved 15-year old Justina Pelletier across state lines to her new placement at the JRI Susan Wayne Center for Excellence in Thompson, Connecticut. According to the Pelletier family, the move comes as a welcome, but not ideal, change of circumstances for their child, who was removed from their care under highly questionable circumstances last year by the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF). Yesterday, the family emerged hopeful from a meeting with the Wayne Center, after learning that their daughter would have more privileges, education time, and access to her family in the Connecticut facility.

“The people at Susan Wayne were very nice to us and have assured us that Justina will have more time with her family while we wait for her to come home,” says Justina’s older sister Jennifer, age 22. “But it’s still a three hour trip for us to see Justina at her new placement in Connecticut, which is just as far from our house in West Hartford as Justina’s last placement at the Wayside Center in Framingham, Massachusetts.”

At the time Justina was taken into State custody in February 2013, she was also a competitive figure skater. Currently, Justina is wheelchair bound and has lost much of her hair while in State care, going nearly a year without adequate medical treatment for her deadly metabolic disorder at Boston Children’s Hospital’s psychiatric lock down facility. Throughout the process, Jennifer, a West Hartford skating instructor, has been a staunch advocate for her little sister, regularly meeting with State officials and leaders on Justina’s behalf, and only missed one week of visitation.

“Our concerns for Justina’s medical care are still there,” says Jennifer, who questions whether a psychiatric facility is an appropriate placement for a child with such serious medical issues. She points out that the lack of medical specialists working for the Wayne Center means that Justina’s physical therapist will be an outside contractor who is brought in twice per week to work with her sister, which may not be enough.


The bitter custody battle between Justina’s parents and DCF began in February 2013 when the State charged the Pelletiers with medical neglect at the recommendation of Boston Children’s Hospital after Justina’s parents brought her to the ER with flu-like symptoms. At the time, the Tufts Medical Center doctor who had been treating Justina for mitochondrial disease was on vacation, and recommended that she go to BCH and see her regular Tufts specialist who had recently taken a job at BCH. After Justina’s arrival in the ER, BCH failed to review the child’s Tufts medical records, then diagnosed Justina with a controversial psychiatric disorder, cut off her medical treatment, and successfully filed an abuse petition with the State to have her removed from her parent’s custody.

Last winter, Massachusetts legislators prompted action from State actors on Justina’s case when they began asking questions about the seemingly endless flow of taxpayer money being spent by DCF to deprive the child of adequate medical treatment and access to her family, who has been shut out of Justina’s care and relegated to one hour of supervised visitation per week. Eventually, Justina was moved from BCH’s psychiatric lockdown unit to another locked ward the Wayside Youth Center in Framingham, Massachusetts.

In March 2014, Suffolk County Juvenile Court Judge Jeffrey Johnston issued a bitter judgment, permanently making the life long Connecticut resident a ward of the State of Massachusetts due to the inconvenience posed by Connecticut DCF’s refusal to take custody of Justina,and the Pelletiers “uncooperative” and feisty response to the State actors they say are responsible for depriving them of custody and keeping Justina sick for their profit. The judgment also removed BCH from the case and placed Justina under the medical care of Tufts Medical Center, the same provider BCH accused of misdiagnosing Justina and facilitating her parent’s alleged “medical abuse” in the child abuse petition that caused the State to take custody of Justina. By April 2014, Anonymous hacktivists had allegedly become involved in the movement to “free Justina,” launching attacks on Wayside’s and BCH’s websites.

On May 5, 2014, Massachusetts Health and Human Services Secretary John Polanowicz provided the Pelletier’s with a four point reunification plan consistent with Johnston’s decision, then announced plans to move Justina out of the Wayside Youth Center. In order to regain custody of Justina, the modest plan requires the Pelletiers to visit their daughter at the Wayne Center, follow through with the Tufts Medical plan for Justina [that they have no knowledge of or control over], attend family counseling, and meet with DCF.

Jennifer Pelletier says that thus far, the Wayne Center has been accommodating and gracious to the family and will allow them to spend time with their sister on a vastly more generous schedule. The family says they are meeting with DCF officials and the Wayne Center later today to hammer out a visitation schedule and discuss the possibility of allowing Justina to see her friends, who have not been allowed to see her for over a year. Jennifer says the schedule is mainly decided by the Wayne Center, not DCF, and the schedule will likely be decided based on times that do not interfere with Justina’s daily educational and medical care regimens, and could provide for as much as daily visits in the near future.

According to a Massachusetts HHS spokesperson, Judge Johnston’s orders provide for a hearing every six months to review Justina’s progress, meaning that the State could decide to transfer legal custody of Justina to her parents as soon as June 20, 2014.

The Pelletier’s say that while they are hopeful and pleased at Justina’s improved conditions and the State’s progress towards her transition home, they aren’t counting their chickens before they hatch.

“We are happy Justina is in a better place, but we will continue to fight to encourage the State to exercise it’s power to move her home today” says Linda Pelletier, Justina’s mother. “We can’t rest until Justina is home safe with her family where she belongs.”

Jennifer says that whenever Justina asks her why no one is listening to her and why it’s taking so long to bring her home, “I always ask her ‘what do I always say?’ and Justina responds ‘be patient, my big sister will always have my back.’”

Justina Pelletier: Judge Awards 'Permanent Custody' To Mass. DFC

Lou Pelletier, Father of Justina Pelletier on Glenn Beck Program and the Kelly File

The Fascists of Massachusetts… Can what is happening to the Pelletier family happen to you?

Pelletier Family Devastated After Court Hearing On Daughter's Custody

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

OpEd: Real Healthcare Reform Should Focus On Care, Not Just Coverage

O-Care’s one-size-fits-all failure

By: Nancy Pfotenhauer  -  The Hill  -  May 8, 2016

Many lawmakers on both sides of the aisle agree that universal health insurance is the central goal of a successful health care reform. The left sold the Affordable Care Act to the American people on this promise; the right hopes to do the same with an alternative plan set to be unveiled later this year.

Both sides are trying to fix the wrong problem. Universal health insurance is profoundly different from better health care—and so long as reformers focus on the former, the latter will continue to deteriorate.

Real healthcare reform must improve the quality of America’s healthcare system. At its most fundamental level, healthcare exists to improve individuals’ health outcomes and overall well-being. Beneficial reforms will thus improve those outcomes, increase healthcare’s quality and lower its costs, with the ancillary effect of expanding its availability.

This is a more worthy goal than putting a health insurance card in everyone’s hand, a la ObamaCare and its Republican replacements. Universal health insurance is merely the provision of a service regardless of that service’s quality. This cannot be achieved without the assistance of a massive bureaucratic apparatus in Washington that stifles innovation, limits consumer choice and increases its costs. Thus, reforms that seek universal health insurance decrease healthcare’s quality, and they don’t deliver on their promise to make coverage universal.

Better healthcare will not be realized without unleashing market-driven innovation. Reformers can’t pretend that this existed prior to Obama-Care’s passage. Then, as now, federal regulations hemmed in consumers and innovators on every side. ObamaCare’s mandates only expand this restrictive regulatory regime.

Innovators and consumers should be unshackled from the reams of red tape. This starts by putting patients—not bureaucrats or insurance companies—at the center of health care. Patients must be free to choose a health plan that is tailored to their needs, not one with benefit mandates created by special interests. Patients need access to real-time health care provider data that doesn’t hide costs or quality behind an impenetrable wall of bureaucratic regulations. Patients should be empowered to improve their own health using breakthrough technologies and personalized treatments.

Thus free to choose, consumers will seek out products and services that actually fit their needs. Innovators will concurrently strive to develop treatments and health care options that consumers want—and at a price they can afford.

No one-size-fits-all federal policy can accomplish this goal.

For instance, several state and federal laws prevent innovators and consumers from working together. So, multiple policy proposals targeting these barriers should be considered and challenged. 

National Center for Policy Analysis President John Goodman’s ideas about improving the poor’s access to care can be coupled with Cato Institute Director of Health Policy Studies Michael Cannon’s ideas about getting prices closer to consumers. Sen. Tom Coburn’s (R-Okla.) idea about equalizing the tax treatment of insurance policies can be one of a number of policies, along with Rep. Steve Scalise’s (R-La.) and Rep. Tom Price’s (R-Ga.) slightly different approaches. Economist John Cochrane has proposals to help those with pre-existing conditions; Bob Graboyes, a senior research fellow at George Mason University, details how we can unleash healthcare innovation. And ideas by the likes of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), and many others all have promise.

Every proposal should be judged by whether it leads to better healthcare for individuals and families, not whether it gives them a health insurance plan they don’t want or can’t afford. Until this shift happens, the country’s healthcare system will continue to serve Washington’s whims rather than Americans’ well-being. 

Pfotenhauer is the president of MediaSpeak Strategies and a senior adviser with Freedom Partners, a nonprofit advocate for free-market policy.

Mental Health Awareness: Wanted Compassion and Understanding

By: Elise Ronan | Ops & Blogs | The Times of Israel

Impressions we make are essential to how we view each other. Social awareness, some call it mindfulness, of the unsaid signals we emit are part and parcel of human interactions. But what happens when a person doesn’t understand the nuances and the secret handshake of unwritten social rules? What happens when these people become so overwhelmed by their environment that they exhibit actions, such as a meltdown, inappropriate yelling – laughing, or experience a panic attack complete with hysterics and uncontrollable crying?

It’s one thing if the helpless person involved is a child. Most of society has all sorts of qualifiers for a child that has issues and mental health concerns. But, as a person ages, society’s tolerance for such actions not only becomes mute, but in most part disappears altogether. Mental illness becomes an unspoken burden in part because it is sadly ignored,  swept away by families due to societal derision. As a person ages the stigma associated with mental illness becomes as much of a weight as the illness itself.

Society lacks basic knowledge about mental health issues. And in many ways tabloid journalism is to blame. The issues are sensationalized, especially when a violent individual commits some unspeakable crimes. (Ignoring the fact that most heinous crimes are actually committed by person considered sane.)The news will drone on and on about a subject that they know nothing about, simply making life unbearable for those already viewed to live on the fringes of society. The uneducated make conjectures, elicit ignorant opinions and promote fear instead of trying to enunciate understanding of what mental illness is and what it is not.

-Mental illness covers a wide range of illnesses. HERE Everything from ADD to autism to panic attacks to PTSD to the more severe forms of schizophrenia.

-The overwhelmingly vast majority of persons with mental illness are NOT violent. In fact they are more likely to be the victim of a violent crime than the perpetrator. HERE

-With help recovery is possible. HERE

It is important to remember that those with mental health illnesses are trying their best. What they need is understanding and acceptance. We can talk about accommodations and we can talk about civil rights until we are  “blue in the face,” but in truth, if someone is uncomfortable around a person with a mental illness, there will never be friends, employment and a successful navigation of society. Can comfort be taught? Can compassion become part and parcel of society?

First, what society needs to understand is that meltdowns, panic attacks, “episodes” are personal to the person. It is how the effected individual is feeling at that one given moment in time. Their being overwhelmed is about how they are processing the sensory information before them. They are in that space and they cannot necessarily remove themselves from that tornado that is their mind. (And as I have said before this inability to see beyond themselves-mindblindness- becomes more problematic as a person ages. A meltdown by a 10-year-old is taken alot differently than a meltdown by a 200 pound, 6 foot tall, grown-adult-male.) HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE

Second, yes, once their “episode” is over, they are capable of understanding what has happened. They realize, once they feel better, if they have been mean, cross or had been inappropriate. “I’m sorry,” is something heartfelt. Apologies abound. They truly feel embarrassed when they have digressed in the presence of their peers and they truly feel shame.

But unfortunately if their actions have frightened someone, scared off a potential friend, or have lost them a job, sometimes there really is no going back. What is lost is lost. The question becomes how do you teach them to understand their feelings in the moment and to control themselves? How do you teach them that impressions are real and that they have consequences before these consequences are life effecting?

Lastly, so what is a parent or caregiver to do? It is trying to teach the idea  that it is the little things that become important when talking about perception. It is the little things that become important when preparing someone for the future.

Walking out of a room, class or environment when they start to feel overwhelmed is a typical self-help method. (Making sure that they leave the room before they exhibit any negative actions is important also, and part of a long process of education.) Trying to get them to understand that their “tone” in a conversation is essential to how their emotional state is perceived is important for social interactions at both school and work. Teaching them the appropriate way to horse-around (even though it seems that in a school setting typical male bonding is seen as anathema in the first place in today’s world) and what to say as a “joke” in public is a good place to start, when teaching about community acceptance. Getting them to understand the necessity of therapy and medication to their own well-being. Promoting a healthy attitude towards exercise, food and self-care can also help in their navigation of the world.

But in the end we do need to accept the fact that there is also just so much anyone person can do to accommodate the world-at-large as well. We also need to understand that no matter how hard those with mental health issues do try, there is always going to be that one person who is just totally unaccepting towards them. This person will, no matter what, never forgive the ill for who they are. They will never see beyond the disability or mental health issue. Honestly, its better to teach the effected individual how to identify these antagonistic people and to just stay away from them. You can’t please everyone and honestly it’s not even worth trying.

As I have always taught my children this primary life lesson…wherever you go in life there is always going to be one “shmendrick.” The trick in life is to NOT be the “shmendrick.” That is basically impressions in a nutshell. That is the basic goal of those with challenges.

In the meantime, May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Maybe one day there will be more give and take with society. Maybe one day the partnership will actually be 50-50. But until that time we work, we teach and we hope that the stigma of mental illness will be lifted and those that are forced onto the fringes of society will be accepted, understood and welcomed into the world inwhich they live.