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Re: [owcp] Letter to Senator Mark Dayton and more

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  • Kaericsson@cs.com
    Hi Felicia: It is my thought that probably all psychological disorders are due to brain damage -- a physical problem in the brain that can either be
    Message 1 of 3 , Mar 5, 2006
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      Hi Felicia: It is my thought that probably all psychological disorders are
      due to "brain damage" -- a physical problem in the brain that can either be
      inherited, caused by a blow to the head, or caused by stress. The brain then
      cannot produce the enzymes that help regulate proper brain and body function. I am
      sure exposure to caustic chemicals does it as well. I've talked with former
      drug addicts who have had similar symptoms to mine.

      My diagnosis is bipolar disorder, which many doctors consider inherited, but
      we don't have a history of it in my family. In some ways the symptoms are
      similar to post traumatic stress syndrome -- and my symptoms first showed up when
      I was stressing out, and lost my ability to sleep well. But it does respond
      well to treatments for bipolar disorder.

      There is no reason to feel ashamed if you have brain trauma of any kind. I
      know that's the hardest part of it, dealing with the stigmatism that has
      followed it through history. Part of you wants to hide in a closet, and part of you
      wants to scream "I'm normal." I've found that the more open I am about it,
      although you will lose some job opportunities and alienate some people,
      eventually you figure out when and how to present yourself, and actually often end up
      in a better work and living environment than if you tried to fit yourself into
      a situation where you felt you have to hide everything. We change our own
      world.

      OK you guys, I know this hasn't been an OWCP letter, but I jump on my soapbox
      whenever it seems right.

      Felicia, you are in my prayers.

      Kriste

      In a message dated 3/4/06 10:47:19 AM Central Standard Time,
      felicia@... writes:

      << Subj: Re: [owcp] Letter to Senator Mark Dayton
      Date: 3/4/06 10:47:19 AM Central Standard Time
      From: felicia@... (Felicia)
      Sender: owcp@yahoogroups.com
      Reply-to: owcp@yahoogroups.com
      To: owcp@yahoogroups.com

      As far as I know, we are still using this list. As
      always, I haven't experienced the same problems as many
      others on the list, except for the constant change of case
      workers. I think this is because I go through the Seattle
      office. I have been thinking of writing a letter to the
      Peace Corps, along with my representative, as my condition
      (Lariam induced) is still largely a mystery - although my
      psychologist thinks that it is brain damage. Anyway, I'm
      hoping that everything will go okay with billing when I
      see a specialist at UCLA in May. It is sad hoping that
      the CAT scans show brain damage, but at least it will be
      an answer.

      -- Felicia


      >>
    • Felicia
      Thanks! I agree that psychological problems are more or less all brain damage. In my case, it definitely falls more into the blow to the head category, as
      Message 2 of 3 , Mar 6, 2006
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        Thanks! I agree that psychological problems are more or
        less all brain damage. In my case, it definitely falls
        more into the "blow to the head" category, as my
        psychologist often describes my symptoms as being those of
        people who have had serious head trauma. As far as trying
        to hide, be normal or otherwise cope, I don't have to
        worry about the job side of things and may never have to
        again. When I was doing well a couple months back, I was
        able to volunteer four hours a week without my symptoms
        getting out of hand, but recently if I do nothing but go
        to the laundromat in a week, it is still too much. I
        think this is why it isn't uncommon for Lariam sufferers
        to kill themselves (not that I'm considering that). We
        have gone way beyond trying to act normal - most of us are
        struggling to make it through the day. What annoys me
        (and others) is that the Physicans Desk Reference clearly
        states that this can happen, and the Peace Corps
        vigorously denies it (and keeps prescribing Lariam). With
        some luck, though, a CAT scan will be able to find which
        part of my brain has been damaged and then my doctor may
        be able to help me work around those damaged areas. Some
        people recover from this. Some suffer with it for the
        rest of their lives. I have only been sick for two years,
        so it may turn out that three years down the road I'll be
        better and able to go back to work. Or I may spend the
        rest of my life weighing each action I take to see if it
        is too stressful (ie can I pick up this sock? can I go to
        the store?). FYI, I've been diagnosed with an organic
        panic disorder (organic meaning that it was caused by
        something outside of me).

        I appreciate your prayers and your supportive words. For
        as dire as my situation sounds, I'm able to make it
        through each day still happy to be me, in part thanks to
        the kindness and strength of others. -- Felicia
      • Heidi Fassnacht
        Felicia, My prayers are with you too. You sound like an incredibly strong person. Good for you for being able to keep your head up and to find happiness
        Message 3 of 3 , Apr 15, 2006
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          Felicia,

          My prayers are with you too. You sound like an
          incredibly strong person. Good for you for being able
          to keep your head up and to find happiness among the
          thorns.

          Heidi


          "In the end, our society will be defined not only by what we create, but also by what we refuse to destroy." John Sawhill

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