Later On

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Archive for the ‘Mental Health’ Category

The NHL (and the NFL) have much to answer for: ‘I Have No Idea How to Tell This Horror Story’

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The NHL and NFL care only about the money they make and care nothing about the health of their players. From the NY Times:

John Branch, a sports reporter at The New York Times, has been in sporadic contact via text messaging and email with Walter Peat since writing about him and his son Stephen, a former N.H.L. player.

At the time of the article, in June 2016, Stephen Peat was 36 and experiencing debilitating headaches and violent mood swings. Peat was primarily an enforcer, a player designated to drop his gloves and square off in fist-to-fist combat with an opponent. The Peats presumed that Stephen’s problems were rooted in brain trauma sustained on the ice in so many fights.

Walter Peat, the head saw filer at a lumber mill in a suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia, gave The Times permission to publish the texts and emails he had sent John over the previous 18 months. Some have been trimmed for concision.

(Stephen disputes his father’s accounts and said, “I am disappointed in my father since I once held him so high on a pedestal.”)

JUNE 7, 2016

Again, we thank you for doing our story, which hasn’t ended yet. I just hope Stephen can get some help, going forward. We had a great day yesterday, as just the 2 of us went boating for the day. Beautiful day, making memories together.

DEC. 30, 2016: John is copied on an email to a doctor with the N.H.L. Players’ Association.

Dr. Rizos,

We are at a critical point in Stephen’s health. I am afraid, Stephen may become another statistic in NHL players who’s life is ended due to brain injuries suffered from playing. We are desperate for help, as we have run out of resources and energy to cope with this. The NHL has offered zero help. I am sorry we haven’t contacted you sooner, but Stephen is stubborn, and proud. It has gone past that, and hope someone will help. He is suffering badly from memory loss, depression, extreme headaches, and at times suicide thoughts. Along with this, tough when he get frustrated and anger comes out. He has got violent a couple times, and at times I am afraid for my life. I love my son very much, and you have no idea how much this hurts to see him like this. Please help.

JUNE 1, 2017

Just an update on Stephen, not sure if the NHL might want to know, but Stephen is in lockup, been arrested 2 times in the last week for parole violation. May spend the next 6 months in jail, he is real bad shape, and like I said before, I don’t have the resources or the knowledge to deal with this. I saw him yesterday, looks horrible, he is homeless. I know one can lead a horse to water theory, but I am afraid this could be very close to his end. At times he has no idea who he is or where he is.

Stephen needs special medical attention badly, as I also believe he has gone back to self medicating, not sure, but you can’t imagine what bad shape he is in. I fear he may not make it out of lock up, but there is nothing I can do, or don’t know what to do. The system is flawed.

He is in lock up now, most likely won’t get released now. Only violation is not seeing his parole officer, but he forgets, a complete mess right now. Probably the safest place for him, but he won’t get fixed in a cement cell.

JUNE 7, 2017

I will be honest, my health has suffered thru this, and I am at a financial crisis as Stephen has gone through $120,000 since getting out of rehab. And he is demanding more every day, to a point if I continue this, I will be on the street. Stephen can’t comprehend my financial stress he has put on me. I went to meet him at Clover Towing the other day, Stephen looked in real bad shape, as he didn’t even know I was there. I had to leave, and stop in a parking lot next door and just broke down. The police were called by the towing company and they took him to jail. He should be in a hospital, not a jail, we can talk more about this. I will say I have had to get a no contact order as I fear for my safety now. If he is in a state where he doesn’t know who I am, it scares me.

JUNE 14, 2017 . . .

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Written by LeisureGuy

21 November 2017 at 3:02 pm

Against Productivity This Essay Took Four Years to Write

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Quinn Norton writes at Medium:

Four years ago I temporarily moved to Puerto Rico. I went to PR to seek the New American Dream, a dream that had swept through American business culture, launched a billion dollar self-help industry, alienated my generation, and killed uncounted people through its wild pursuit. I went to escape the distractions and social obligations of the mainland and to try to truly capture the elusive quality that rises above all considerations in the contemporary American psyche: I went to Puerto Rico to work on being more productive.

I had a place to stay, and I didn’t speak the language. I went with the idea that I would avoid distractions and get a lot of writing done. I would organize my time, my thoughts, and my notes. I would have to-do lists and subject clouds and create outlines and fill them in, everyday between 9 and 6 or 7. I would have a word count, discrete articles, a body of material. I could pitch them and massage them into house voices as needed on a schedule to woo editors. I’d make habits that let me produce content, on time, regularly, without last minute stress.

I didn’t do any of that. I got a little writing done, and I stared up at the beautiful old ceiling of my apartment a lot.

When I went to Puerto Rico I was, like everyone I knew, not only incredibly busy, but absorbed in trying to figure out how to produce more in my busy time. Even my leisure time had to be productive: Was I having enough fun? Was I sufficiently recharged for my next round of work? Was I getting enough out of the island? I had to be a productive learner as well: was I getting a good picture of PR’s culture? Was I mining my experience of this beautiful place for all it was worth.

I visited with new friends, and tooled around on the net (albeit always at 2G speeds). I watched rain fall. I cooked. I considered the shape of the buildings a lot, and looked after cats periodically. I walked to old forts and lookouts. At one point I took pictures of doors for no reason I could discern. I berated myself for being unproductive, for wasting this precious time I’d set aside to put my professional life together. I spent hours anxious to craft my time to be quantitatively better for writing. Then it all collapsed, and the only habit I fell into was depressive empty afternoons when I was alone with the cats and the rain. But I also, and wholly by accident, thought the thoughts that would take my career and life in a new and unimagined direction.

In the end my trip to Puerto Rico didn’t turn out how I’d hoped. I barely wrote anything. I complained to myself about myself a lot. I took a lot of long walks and so-so pictures. I edited part of a book, but that didn’t take long. I sat around getting both anxious and bored from how little I had gotten done. I had no idea how vital that time was when it was passing.

I have always had a flirtatious interest in the ever morphing American dream, from The Great Gatsby to Fear and Loathing, from the chickens and picket fences of the 50s to the foreign adventures and many attempts to bring democracy to ourselves and others. Every age of America reinvents and transforms the dream and thereby some part of the national soul. But sitting in Old San Juan in a tropical rain, trying to keep mosquitos off my ankles, I began to think no iteration was quite as vile as this one. Despite all the greed and hatred of the past iterations, no version of the dream had been so mechanical — so dehumanizing — as this dream of productivity.

We dream now of making Every Moment Count, of achieving flow and never leaving, creating one project that must be better than the last, of working harder and smarter. We multitask, we update, and we conflate status with long hours worked in no paid overtime systems for the nebulous and fantastic status of being Too Important to have Time to Ourselves, time to waste. But this incarnation of the American dream is all about doing, and nothing about doing anything good, or even thinking about what one was doing beyond how to do more of it more efficiently. It was not even the surrenders to hedonism and debauchery or greed our literary dreams have recorded before. It is a surrender to nothing, to a nothingness of lived accounting.

This moment’s goal of productivity, with its all-consuming practice and unattainable horizon, is perfect for our current corporate world. Productivity never asks what it builds, just how much of it can be piled up before we leave or die. It is irrelevant to pleasure. It’s agnostic about the fate of humanity. It’s not even selfish, because production negates the self. Self can only be a denominator, holding up a dividing bar like a caryatid trying to hold up a stone roof.

I am sure this started with the Industrial Revolution, but what has swept through this generation is more recent. This idea of productivity started in the 1980s, with the lionizing of the hardworking greedy. There’s a critique of late capitalism to be had for sure, but what really devastated my generation was the spiritual malaise inherent in Taylorism’s perfectly mechanized human labor. But Taylor had never seen a robot or a computer perfect his methods of being human. By the 1980s, we had. In the age of robots we reinvented the idea of being robots ourselves. We wanted to program our minds and bodies and have them obey clocks and routines. In this age of the human robot, of the materialist mind, being efficient took the pre-eminent spot, beyond goodness or power or wisdom or even cruel greed.

There’s so many casualties to this view of the mechanical human. Wisdom itself has vanished from the discourse, replaced by mere knowing. I don’t mean that these are less wise times, but that the very idea of wisdom has vanished from the culture. If I hear the word being discussed it’s generally as a game stat. Evidence is everything, but the context that gives it meaning is worthless. The very idea of the liberal education that was once the foundation of our Enlightenment culture is mystifyingly irrelevant, even for the rich rulers it was invented for. How, we collectively ask, does understanding history, philosophy, or art make us more productive? The vibrant life was replaced with mere health. Wonder became a pump for applicable creativity. How shall we get everything done? Despite having more labor-saving technology than anyone in history, we have made it so we have more to get done than any form of society before us. We even created a social obligation to enjoy ourselves with maximal efficiency, and called it a tourism industry.

Productivity, the word, was born at the beginning of the 19th century as the ability to bring forth. . .

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Written by LeisureGuy

11 November 2017 at 11:22 am

Psychology’s power tools

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David A Sbarra, professor of psychology at University of Arizona and director of the Laboratory for Social Connectedness and Health, writes in Aeon:

A few years ago, I was attending a conference in Berlin in Germany, and I went out one evening to catch up with a friend I hadn’t seen in years. James lives in the United States and works in the field of psychology, but Berlin was the first time we’d been together in a good while. It was a beautiful evening and the city felt so alive, but James looked nervous. I knew he had something to tell me.

He started: ‘Brian is Briana.’


‘My son is my daughter. He is really a she.’

I didn’t need any more explanation to know what James was saying. His 18-year-old, formerly Brian, identified as a woman, and he was breaking the news to me.


‘I know. I know. He’s going to… I mean, she’s having sex-reassignment surgery in Singapore in December, and we’ve been doing hormone treatments for months. It’s been a wild ride.’

When James used the word ‘we’ to describe the hormone treatments, I knew everything would be OK. The ‘we’ in his sentence was a clue that that their family was not split apart by this news. Learning that your son is really your daughter is, for most people, life-changing news, and the few clients I had worked with in therapy around their gender identity were torn apart by how their families had responded.

James had learned so much in the past year about how to connect with his daughter as a trans-woman. Briana’s brother was turning his back on her, and James and his wife felt alone, as if they were walking on quicksand. Throughout the conversation, though, he kept saying: ‘It is what it is.’ James must have said the phrase 10 times, and it dawned on me that he was getting at something profound. With this aphorism, he could avoid getting sucked into potentially painful emotions and instead be present and available to help his daughter.

When I returned from Berlin, I was primed to hear the phrase everywhere I went. I am convinced I hear it at least once a day, and not only from my clients. I hear it from my wife, my friends, my colleagues, my students and, a few days ago, I heard it from the woman working the register at the gas station. I hear myself and others saying these words, but I hardly ever stop to reflect on their meaning. When it finally dawned on me to ask why everyone keeps using this phrase, the answer appeared quickly and with force: the phrase is a way to psychologically disarm powerful negative emotions. It’s an efficient means of distancing ourselves from difficult experiences, to create mental space and, potentially, to ignore – in a good way – percolating negative emotions. In short, this phrase represents what psychologists call an emotion-regulatory strategy.

Research in clinical psychology suggests that a key aspect of maintaining our emotional health is not deepening our connection to painful thoughts – that is, not getting ‘sucked into’ thoughts about inferiority, impossibility, or seeing the potential for bad outcomes around every corner. ‘It is what it is’ reflects the decision not to go down this road and, when we use it, we’re practising one of the best therapies around. Although there are many routes to emotional equanimity, it is the thoughts in our heads, and the words we choose to express them, that are the gatekeepers of our psychological wellbeing.

This notion is at the heart of cognitive behavioural therapy, or CBT, a proven collection of techniques that help us realign our thoughts so our emotions stay in balance and we successfully navigate life.

Imagine you’re strolling across a lovely college campus on your way to grab lunch with a friend. You’re stopped by two students.

‘Could you spare a minute? We’re running a research study on how people perceive the natural environment. Would you like to participate?’

‘Sure, why not?’

This is when things get a little weird. The researchers have you don a backpack that weighs about 20 per cent as much as you do. Then they ask you to estimate the slant of the hill in front of you from completely flat to a vertical cliff. Can you zip up this hill with your backpack on, or did this small hill just become Mount Everest in your mind? Although I’ve glamorised it a bit, this is a real research study. Developed by the psychologist Dennis Proffitt and his colleagues at the University of Virginia, the ‘hill slant’ study is well-known, and has garnered an impressive set of findings about visual perception. It makes sense that people perceive the hill to be steeper when they are wearing a heavy backpack, relative to when they’re not wearing one (That hill with this backpack? No way!), and that they perceive the hill to be steeper if they’re tired.

A more surprising finding emerged in 2008, when psychologist Simone Schnall, director of the Mind, Body, and Behaviour Laboratory at the University of Cambridge, found that people perceive hills to be less steep when they’re with other people or when they imagine a supportive significant other alongside them. Schnall reasoned that the availability of social resources might keep people from ‘being depleted’ when they donned the heavy backpack. It is hard to overstate the significance of these findings: social support alters how we perceive the demands of the physical world.

In fact, the hill-slant study illustrates one of the most important topics in contemporary psychological science: our evaluations of situations, events and people shape how we perceive, or appraise, the world around us. These psychological evaluations are often referred to as cognitive appraisals. When we’re with others we appraise the slant of the hill differently; we evaluate that mound of dirt as less foreboding.

How do you feel about work or school tomorrow? Smooth sailing or another headache? What about that weird look a colleague gave you this morning? Your kid is talking back and being a total pain. Why does it bother you so much after dinner compared with after breakfast?

These questions capture the essence of the calculus we engage in every second of the day. We’re constantly taking our own psychological temperature and evaluating whether we need to rest or spring into action. Our emotional lives hinge in large part on this appraisal process. Whether we feel happy, engaged and full of energy is derived from the belief that we are in harmony with the world around us.

We maintain this sense of harmony by viewing ourselves, others and the events around us in a relatively benign light: things are fine, we’re safe. When we perceive the slings and arrows of life as non-events – when we can say: ‘It is what it is’ – we can face difficult circumstances and effectively disarm potential emotional landmines.

When anxiety makes our thinking disordered, on the other hand, quite the opposite happens. Hills seem insurmountable, and the world becomes a scary and impossible place. As a brief example of appraisals gone awry, stop for a moment and think about what it would feel like to believe that you are absolutely worthless. You contribute nothing to this planet. Zilch! What if you were as certain of these thoughts as you were of the fact that you need light in order to read this article? Now you have an idea about what it’s like to be depressed.

Most of the time, however, these negative appraisals are distortions; they are misappraisals of the world around us based on automatic habits of thought that have rooted themselves deep inside our minds. CBT was designed to help people break these habits, to learn new ways to evaluate the reality of their appraisals and, in general, to think more flexibly about their lives.

Judith Guest’s novel Ordinary People (1976) is, arguably, one of the richest literary explorations of grief. Guest shows us how reactions to loss can insidiously gnaw at the foundation of our psychological health, and explores how the same events can impact people in different ways. In one of the book’s best exchanges, Conrad Jarrett talks with his psychiatrist, Tyrone Berger, about the massive emotional pain he has kept under wraps since the tragic death by drowning of his oldest brother and his own unsuccessful attempt at suicide. Conrad’s mother, Beth, meanwhile, shuts down completely and is totally disconnected from Conrad’s pain. His father, Cal, tries with all his might to protect his son from the throws of depression, and it’s clear that these efforts are in large part to protect himself from the pain of losing his elder son. The Jarretts were just ordinary people, just trying to make sense of their lives. When tragedy struck, they became ordinary people dealing with an extraordinary set of emotions that set them adrift.

Understanding and improving our mental health often hinges on demystifying emotional experience, and any therapist worth a dime should begin his or her treatments with a review of some basic lessons learned from the research on emotions. For starters, emotions are feelings – the conscious experience of pleasure or pain.We experience our emotions along a continuum from good to bad, at intensities from relatively neutral to downright explosive. Thus, we can sit happily on our couches or jump and scream for joy at our favourite sporting events.

Importantly, emotions communicate information, prepare us for action, and have incredible survival value. Without a signalling system to warn us about potential threats in the natural world – that is, without emotions to provide information – humans and other animals would be toast. Quite often, our emotions become disordered when they are out of proportion to the demands of a given situation. Just think of someone who has a panic attack at the idea of being at Costco on a Saturday; it can be overwhelming for anyone, but it is not an emergency that should elicit an immediate and overwhelming fear response. Given the importance of emotions to our survival and the myriad ways in which they can become disordered, the goal of most psychotherapies is to recalibrate our emotional response system.

Over the course of my career, I have worked with many clients who just wanted to figure out how to eliminate every single one of their emotional reactions. Doc, if you had a pill that would stop me from feeling, I’d take it in a heartbeat. There’s a simple and poignant response for such statements: if we eliminated the experience of physical pain, we’d burn our hands off on a hot stove by dinnertime. The same goes for our emotions. Our goal should never be to eliminate our emotions, but rather to regulate or coexist with them better.

Perhaps no psychologist has contributed more to the study of emotion-regulation than James Gross at Stanford University. In one of his earliest studies, Gross showed research participants three silent videos: one of an abstract shape like you might see on a computer screensaver, one of a burn victim receiving treatment, and one of a close-up amputation of an arm. At any point, participants were allowed to ask that a film be stopped. Gross then evaluated participants’ felt experiences and physiological and behavioural responses under one of three conditions: watching as usual; actively trying to suppress emerging emotions; or using techniques of cognitive reappraisal, in which they were asked to think about what they were seeing objectively and technically, and then reappraise the images in those terms.

The big finding from this study was that reappraisal lead to ‘decreases in both behavioural and subjective signs of emotion’, with no hint of elevations in physiological stress. A particularly interesting aspect of the findings was that seven of the participants in the ‘watch’ and ‘suppress’ groups asked for the upsetting films to be stopped, compared with none in the ‘reappraise’ group, suggesting that asking people to view upsetting material from a more detached perspective does indeed alter the nature of the emotional experience.

This fact is a foundational element of CBT: change how you view your circumstance, and you can change how you feel. Gross’s research provided empirical backbone for the link between our thoughts and our emotions. I have long felt this research captures the essence of what most cognitive behavioural therapists do on a daily basis: we help people come to view the hurdles of life less like perilous threats that will slowly eat them alive and more like challenges to be managed and overcome. . .

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The book Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy, by David Burns, MD, is based on CBT findings.

Written by LeisureGuy

9 November 2017 at 8:32 am

What Experts Know About Men Who Rape

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Heather Murphy reports in the NY Times:

In 1976, a Ph.D. candidate at Claremont Graduate University placed a rather unusual personal ad in newspapers throughout Los Angeles:


Researcher interviewing anonymously by phone to protect your identity. Call 213-…  9-9pm.

He sat by his phone, skeptical that it would ring. “I didn’t think that anyone would want to respond,” said Samuel D. Smithyman, now 72 and a clinical psychologist in South Carolina.

But the phone did ring. Nearly 200 times.

At the other end of the line were a computer programmer who had raped his “sort of girlfriend,” a painter who had raped his acquaintance’s wife, and a school custodian who described 10 to 15 rapes as a means of getting even with “rich bastards” in Beverly Hills.

By the end of the summer, Dr. Smithyman had completed 50 interviews, which became the foundation for his dissertation: “The Undetected Rapist.” What was particularly surprising to him was how normal these men sounded and how diverse their backgrounds were. He concluded that few generalizations could be made.

Over the past few weeks, women across the world have recounted tales of harassment and sexual assault by posting anecdotes to social media with the hashtag #MeToo. Even just focusing on the second category, the biographies of the accused are so varied that they seem to support Dr. Smithyman’s observation.

But more recent research suggests that there are some commonalities. In the decades since his paper, scientists have been gradually filling out a picture of men who commit sexual assaults.

The most pronounced similarities have little to do with the traditional demographic categories, like race, class and marital status. Rather, other kinds of patterns have emerged: these men begin early, studies find. They may associate with others who also commit sexual violence. They usually deny that they have raped women even as they admit to nonconsensual sex.

Clarifying these and other patterns, many researchers say, is the most realistic path toward curtailing behaviors that cause so much pain.

“If you don’t really understand perpetrators, you’re never going to understand sexual violence,” said Sherry Hamby, editor of the journal Psychology of Violence. That may seem obvious, but she said she receives “10 papers on victims” for every one on perpetrators.

This may be partly connected to a tendency to consider sexual assault a women’s issue even though men usually commit the crime. But finding the right subjects also has complicated the research.

Early studies relied heavily on convicted rapists. This skewed the data, said Neil Malamuth, a psychologist at the University of California, Los Angeles, who has been studying sexual aggression for decades.

Men in prison are often “generalists,” he said: “They would steal your television, your watch, your car. And sometimes they steal sex.”

But men who commit sexual assault, and are not imprisoned because they got away with it, are often “specialists.” There is a strong chance that this is their primary criminal transgression.

More recent studies tend to rely on anonymous surveys of college students and other communities, which come with legal language assuring subjects their answers cannot be used against them. The studies avoid using terms such as “rape” and “sexual assault.”

Instead, they ask subjects highly specific questions about their actions and tactics. The focus of most sexual aggression research is acknowledged nonconsensual sexual behavior. In questionnaires and in follow-up interviews, subjects are surprisingly open about ignoring consent.

Men who rape tend to start young, in high school or the first couple of years of college, likely crossing a line with someone they know, the research suggests.

Some of these men commit one or two sexual assaults and then stop. Others — no one can yet say what portion — maintain this behavior or even pick up the pace.

Antonia Abbey, a social psychologist at Wayne State University, has found that young men who expressed remorse were less likely to offend the following year, while those who blamed their victim were more likely to do it again.

One repeat offender put it this way: “I felt I was repaying her for sexually arousing me.”

There is a heated debate among experts about whether there is a point at which sexual assault becomes an entrenched behavior and what percentage of assaults are committed by serial predators.

Most researchers agree that the line between the occasional and frequent offender is not so clear. The recent work of Kevin Swartout, a professor of psychology and public health at Georgia State University, suggests that low-frequency offenders are more common on college campuses than previously thought.

“It’s a matter of degree, more like dosage,” said Mary P. Koss, a professor of public health at the University of Arizona, who is credited with coining the term “date rape.”

Dosage of what? Certain factors — researchers call them “risk factors” while acknowledging that these men are nonetheless responsible for their actions — have an outsize presence among those who commit sexual assaults.

Heavy drinking, perceived pressure to have sex, a belief in “rape myths” — such as the idea that no means yes — are all risk factors among men who have committed sexual assault. A peer group that uses hostile language to describe women is another one.

Yet there also seem to be personal attributes that have a mediating effect on these factors. Men who are highly aroused by rape porn — another risk factor — are less likely to attempt sexual assault if they score highly on measures of empathy, Dr. Malamuth has found.

Narcissism seems to work in the other direction, magnifying odds that men will commit sexual assault and rape.

What about the idea that rape is about power over women? Some experts feel that research into hostile attitudes toward women supports this idea.

In general, however, researchers say motives are varied and difficult to quantify.

Dr. Malamuth has noticed that repeat offenders often . . .

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Written by LeisureGuy

31 October 2017 at 4:44 pm

Is @realDonaldTrump addicted to Twitter?

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James Roberts provides an interesting answer in Salon:

This piece originally appeared on The Conversation.
Is President Trump a Twitter addict? He may not know – but he could find out, as could members of the general public concerned about their own use of social media.
Addiction, whether it’s to drugs, alcohol, exercise, sex or social media, is best understood as continuing a behavior despite its negative consequences for you and others around you. And, yes, people can be addicted to behaviors like tweeting. Anything that produces pleasure in a person’s brain can lead to addiction.
For a new edition of my book “Too Much of a Good Thing: Are You Addicted to Your Smartphone?,” I built on my work studying smartphone addiction to develop a Twitter addiction scale. It’s based on the six core components of any addiction: integration, euphoria, tolerance, withdrawal symptoms, conflict and relapse. These factors evaluate how much a particular behavior – such as drinking alcohol to excess, gambling or tweeting – is embedded in, and harmful to, a person’s life.
Evaluating 12 statements
The Twitter addiction scale is a fairly simple process, involving agreeing or disagreeing with two sentences on each of those six components. Agreeing scores a point; disagreements score zero. (If you’re hoping you’re not addicted, you want a low score.)
First is integration – how ever-present the behavior is in daily life.
1. I send tweets throughout the day.
2. I feel compelled to tweet my opinions on topics important to me.
Next is euphoria, whether there is a feeling of anticipation or excitement around the behavior.
3. I feel great when my tweets get a lot of attention.
4. I feel better after tweeting something that needs to be said.
Then we look at tolerance, the need for an ever-increasing “dose” of the behavior to achieve the desired “high.”
5. Recently, I find myself tweeting more and more.
6. I spend more time tweeting than I should.
After that comes withdrawal: feelings of irritability, stress, anxiousness, desperation and even panic that arise when not engaged in the behavior.
7. I get anxious when I can’t tweet out my thoughts on something.
8. I would go into a panic if I lost access to my Twitter account.
Next is conflict, the degree to which the behavior impedes relationships with other people.
9. I have had serious arguments with others over my tweeting.
10. My romantic partner says I need to cut back on my tweeting.
Finally, we look at relapse, the degree to which attempts to limit the behavior fail.
11. I have tried to cut back on my tweeting but could not.
12. I have tried to be more civil when tweeting but always go back to name-calling and negative comments.
Trump’s answers
It’s possible to discern from his behavior and public statements, and from media coverage of his tweeting, the responses Trump would likely give. . .

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Written by LeisureGuy

28 October 2017 at 2:18 pm

Roy Moore in law school: “Fruit Salad”

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Charles Bethea reports in the New Yorker:

George Thomas Wilson, a retired magazine-marketing and P.R. professional now living in New York City, has never forgotten his first criminal-law class, at the University of Alabama School of Law, in 1974. It was taught by Clint McGee, who graduated from the law school himself, in 1940. Early in the class, McGee called on one of Wilson’s classmates, a United States Military Academy graduate named Roy Moore. “And, for the entire hour, McGee kept him standing and talking, standing and talking,” Wilson told me recently. “Finally, at the end of the hour, McGee said to him, ‘Mr. Moore, I have been teaching in this school for thirty years, and in all of that time you’re the most mixed-up person I’ve ever taught. I’m going to call you Fruit Salad.”
John D. Saxon, a civil-rights attorney practicing in Birmingham, also took McGee’s class. He confirmed Wilson’s account. “We’re all sitting there just kind of praying. ‘Dear Lord, glad this isn’t me, please help old Roy out.’ But he was totally, hopelessly confused.” Two days later, Saxon said, McGee called on Moore again. “He says, ‘Fruit Salad, take this case.’ ” Roy was puzzled, Saxon said, and McGee repeated himself. “He says, ‘Professor McGee, it’s me, Mr. Moore.’ At which point McGee gets him in front of the room, takes Moore’s hand, and starts turning him in circles. He says, ‘Mr. Moore, you’re all mixed up, like a fruit salad.’ He proceeded to call him Fruit Salad for the rest of law school.” Saxon added, “Years later, I’m watching the ten-o’clock news with my wife and there’s this circuit judge up in Etowah County with this little plaque with the Ten Commandments on the wall behind him, and I said to her, ‘Look, there’s Fruit Salad.’ ”
In September, Moore, who went on to become the chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court—a position from which he was twice removed, for violating the Alabama Canons of Judicial Ethics—won a Republican Senate primary runoff over Luther Strange. He is now favored in the general election, which will be held on December 12th, to fill the seat recently occupied by Jeff Sessions, who graduated from Alabama Law in 1973, the year before Moore matriculated. (Moore’s opponent in the race is Doug Jones, a Democrat and former U.S. Attorney best known for prosecuting two of the Ku Klux Klan members behind the 1963 bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, which killed four African-American girls.) Over the past few weeks, ten graduates and professors of the class of 1977, of various political persuasions, shared memories of Moore, both on and off the record, from his time in law school. Some remain in touch with Moore. A few consider him a friend or occasional ally. None, however, expected him to become a successful lawyer, much less a U.S. senator. (The Moore campaign did not respond to a request for comment.)
Saxon, who chaired Bill Clinton’s Presidential campaign in Alabama, noted that Moore was not really involved in any of the law school’s extracurricular activities—the moot-court program, the student bar association, and so on. He called him “your average law student passing through.” Others offered harsher assessments.
“I remember our constitutional-law professor really ripping Roy apart using the Socratic method and thinking, in retrospect, ‘I can’t believe this man went to West Point.’ Because you kind of think that you have to be smart to go to West Point,” one classmate, who, like Moore, became a judge, told me. Another classmate said that she used to sit with a good friend of hers in every class. “Roy always sat in front of us, and he would turn around and flirt. He’s the one thing that brought humor to us, because he was, well, kind of a doofus,” she said. “He’d yak at us. We were both single, rolling our eyes.” She added, “And then Roy would ask all of these questions to put himself in the middle of debating with an intelligent professor, and he was always cut to shreds.”
Julia Smeds Roth, a partner at the law firm Eyster Key, in Decatur, said that she and her friends called Moore and those he spent time with “the lounge lizards,” because they were always in the student lounge playing cards. “He’d go to class, but he was argumentative, very stubborn, and not very thoughtful in his analysis of the cases. He was not a very attentive student. For the most part, students didn’t respect him much.” She added, “Of all my classmates, he was the least likely I’d think would become a U.S. senator.”
Moore is the oldest of five children born to a blue-collar family in Gadsden, and he was twenty-seven, a few years older than most of his classmates, when he entered law school. At the time, George Wallace, a segregationist Democrat and another Alabama Law School alumnus, was in the middle of his second term as governor. Moore had recently returned from Vietnam, where he’d been a military-police officer. Some who served under Moore there had referred to him, with sarcasm, as “Captain America,” chafing at his egoist style of command. One such officer, Barrey Hall, told the Associated Press, in 2003, that Moore’s “policies damn near got him killed in Vietnam. He was a strutter.”
Guy Martin taught Moore in a seminar titled Discrimination in Employment. He, too, served in Vietnam. Veterans told him that Moore demanded that he be saluted on the ground in Vietnam, Martin said, which everyone knew was a foolish thing to do. “When you go to Vietnam as an officer, you don’t ask anybody to salute you, because the Viet Cong would shoot officers,” he explained. “You’ve heard this a million times in training.” If Moore indeed violated this rule, Martin went on, “There’s nothing more telling about a person’s capability and character and base intelligence. It’s crazy.” In September, shortly before the Republican primary runoff, Martin, a self-described moderate, wrote an editorial in a local paper warning voters about his former student. In it, he describes Moore as a pupil so immune to logic and reason that he forced his exasperated teacher to “abandon the Socratic method of class participation in favor of the lecture mode.” (Martin remembers giving him “a C or a D. He did enough to pass.”)
Crawford Melton, a lawyer in Opelika, was friendly with Moore at the time. “He was very, very opinionated. To the point of just being ridiculous,” Melton said. “He had ultraconservative values and opinions. I’m not saying he wasn’t liked, he was just different.” Wilson said, “He was Looney Tunes from the beginning. But I never really thought he was malicious. Some of the verbiage that’s come out of him more recently, it’s a much harsher, meaner man than I remember.”
Most of Moore’s classmates didn’t recall . . .

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Written by LeisureGuy

27 October 2017 at 1:07 pm

Posted in Election, GOP, Mental Health

Text for free and anonymous counseling help

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Via a Facebook post:

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Written by LeisureGuy

27 October 2017 at 12:38 pm

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