Kyle MacDonald: The Truth About Depression
There is no one "depression".
Everything has an upside and a downside. We've come so far with our efforts to de-stigmatise mental illness by encouraging people to talk about their struggles with anxiety and depression that it seems almost normal to hear about such things from friends, co-workers and celebrities.
But with this increased awareness, there has been a cost. Sometimes we struggle to know what depression is anymore.
Kyle MacDonald: Why Fear is Good for Kids
Being a therapist and a parent is not an easy ride. I know too much about the kinds of awful things people experience in childhood and the ways events can impact us for life.
While I can get a bit neurotic about it at times, it's normal to want to protect our children from fearful things. Childhood fears, though, are normal - even necessary.
Kyle MacDonald: What's Really Behind our Rising Anxiety?
There is little doubt that anxiety levels are increasing, worldwide. And no faster than in children and young people. And despite what Fox News and various websites might want us to believe, for most of us the world is also getting safer, and we're living longer.
So, why are we getting more anxious?
Kyle MacDonald: Harvey Weinstein and What's Missing From Society
The recent revelations about Harvey Weinstein's sexual abuse and rape of women in Hollywood and its cover up is deeply shocking.
It's also lead to a necessary public conversation about sexual harassment and sexual violence, exemplified by the recent flurry of women I care about and respect posting #metoo on their social media timelines.
Kyle MacDonald: The Problem With Mental Health Awareness Week
Tuesday October the 10th is recognised worldwide as "World Mental Health Day" and this week is Mental Health Awareness Week.
I have a problem with Mental Health Awareness Week: It's still not clear to me what it is we're trying to do, what kind of awareness are we trying to raise?
Are the people who need to be more aware actually listening?
Mum seeks inquiry into mental health after daughter's suicide
The parents of a 15-year-old girl who took her own life two months ago are pleading with the Government to address mental health support.
Hana Reedy and Api Nasedra are presenting a photo of their daughter, Ariana Reedy, framed by the names of thousands of New Zealanders calling for an inquiry into mental health.
Kyle MacDonald: Is National Right About E-therapy for Mental Health?
Encouraging people who may already feel bereft of human connection to seek solace from a digital programme is like holding Alcoholics Anonymous meetings in a pub.
When National's record on mental health was questioned in the final Leaders Debate before the election, party leader Bill English made the bold claim that e-therapy works as well as face-to-face therapy. But does it? And what is e-therapy anyway?
Sometimes referred to as digital mental health care, e-therapy is any form of psychological intervention that is provided via a digital device. It includes guided video and text based treatment, sort of like an interactive self-help book. In some cases, it is aided by email or chat with professionals, or even video chat with a therapist or counsellor.
So does this work?
Kyle MacDonald: Why You'll Probably Vote for the Wrong Party
However, I've been challenging people I know to confuse themselves. There are a number of great political questionnaires that have been set up for this election that enable you to see which parties your values and beliefs actually line up with
A certain Bulgarian-Maori friend of mine has some wisdom he trots out when people ignore evidence: "Don't confuse me with the facts". Psychologists call it "confirmation bias".
Either way, odds are you're voting for the wrong party. How do you decide who to vote for? Policy; personality; team loyalty; favourite colour?
Kyle MacDonald: What are Political Parties Doing for Mental Health?
On the front lawn of parliament the "Yes We Care" Coalition laid out 606 shoes to represent those lost to suicide in the last year.
It was a year ago when the People's Mental Health Review started to collect stories from people who had direct experience of the growing mental health crisis in New Zealand.
We wanted to give voice to those who weren't being heard, as the calls for action grew.
Twelve months later we are now having a national conversation about mental health on an unprecedented scale. And mental health is squarely - smack bang - in the middle of the election agenda.
Kyle MacDonald: Where Mental Health Stigmas are Still Rife
"Do we still have a problem with stigma towards those with mental illness in NZ?"
I wonder what most of you think of now when I say "mental health". Depression? Maybe anxiety? We've done a great job at making knowledge about the most common mental health struggles more public, and more okay to talk about.
But what about the more "severe" problems? What do people understand about psychosis, bipolar disorder, chronic and complex post-traumatic stress disorder, personality disorders or severe addictions?