Inside Schizophrenia

Healthline Media

Featuring engaging conversations and insightful interviews covering a wide range of topics including caregiving, family dynamics, and getting help for schizophrenia. Hosted by Rachel Star Withers, who lives with schizophrenia. Inside Schizophrenia brings firsthand experiences from individuals with schizophrenia, family members, caregivers, and medical experts, aiming to foster a deeper understanding of schizophrenia, shed light on its impact, and develop strategies for managing this serious mental illness.  Co-hosted by Gabe Howard, new episodes are released on the third Wednesday of every month. read less
Health & FitnessHealth & Fitness

Episodes

What is ‘Schizoposting’ and Why it’s Dangerous
4d ago
What is ‘Schizoposting’ and Why it’s Dangerous
“Schizoposting” is a growing internet trend that involves posting violent images, videos, text posts, and memes as if the creator is having a mental breakdown. It has become associated with hate movements, and people are using schizoposting as a medium to desensitize and encourage others to violent impulses and unpredictable behavior. In this episode of Inside Schizophrenia, host Rachel Star Withers, who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia, and co-host Gabe Howard explore the online world of schizoposting and how this affects people diagnosed with schizophrenia.  Guest Dr. Jim Johansson, who has been studying schizoposting and its growth on alt-right internet platforms, joins for a discussion. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the episode page. Our guest, Dr. Jim Johansson, is a nursing clinical instructor (mental health) and a registered nurse based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. His program of research focuses on the intersection of mental health and the criminal justice system. He has presented his work across Canada and internationally. Our host, Rachel Star Withers, creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.com. Our cohost, Gabe Howard, is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Does Language Matter When Discussing Schizophrenia and Psychosis?
Jun 19 2024
Does Language Matter When Discussing Schizophrenia and Psychosis?
How do you refer to a person who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia? “Person with schizophrenia” or “schizophrenic?” What about other words, for example, “crazy, insane, psycho, or schizo?” The words we use carry meaning and stigma but also information and identity. Hosts Rachel Star Withers and Gabe Howard explore person-first language versus condition-first language when discussing people with schizophrenia. NAMI’s (National Alliance on Mental Illness) chief medical officer, Dr. Ken Duckworth, joins to introduce a schizophrenia and psychosis lexicon guide to assist in conversations about schizophrenia. Our guest, Ken Duckworth’s, journey into psychiatry started when he was a boy growing up with a dad who experienced severe bipolar disorder. His father was loving, kind, and periodically quite ill, hospitalized for months at a time. Ken became a psychiatrist, in part, to help his father. He serves as the chief medical officer for NAMI and feels fortunate to be a part of this community. Ken recently authored NAMI’s first book, “You Are Not Alone: The NAMI Guide to Navigating Mental Health ― With Advice from Experts and Wisdom from Real People and Families.” Written with authority and compassion, the book is an essential resource for people and families seeking expert guidance on diagnosis, treatment and recovery. It features inspiring true stories from real people in their own words. Ken is double-board certified in adult and child/adolescent psychiatry and has completed a forensic psychiatry fellowship. Schizophrenia & Psychosis Guide: Care, Advocacy, Engagement: https://www.nami.org/Support-Education/Publications-Reports/Guides/Schizophrenia-Psychosis-Guide-Care-Advocacy-Engagement/ Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.com. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dealing with Weight Gain in Schizophrenia
May 15 2024
Dealing with Weight Gain in Schizophrenia
People with schizophrenia are at a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes than the general population. Diabetes is seen in 1 in 5 people with schizophrenia. Metabolic syndrome occurs in 1 in 3 people with schizophrenia. What is causing these physical illnesses in people with schizophrenia? Is this just due to our lifestyle factors? How significant a role does medication for schizophrenia play in developing these illnesses? And how can we manage to stay physically healthy with schizophrenia? Hosts Rachel Star Withers and Gabe Howard share their struggles with weight issues and connections to mental disorders. Guest Fran Hinson, a registered nurse, personal trainer, and behavior modification specialist, joins us. She works with special populations to help create small, sustainable habits inside and outside the gym. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Fran Hinson is passionate about helping people step into their new lives. She has worked in the health and fitness industry for 15 years as a registered nurse, an ACE-certified personal trainer, and a group fitness instructor. She holds a certification as a Behavior Modification Specialist. Fran uses these tools to help her clients make small, sustainable habits inside and outside the gym. You will not become healthier overnight. It happens one small, sustainable step after another.  “My style is assessment, small changes, execution, and repetition. I will work with you to make small changes to your daily routine, supporting your progress and keeping you accountable along the way.” — Fran Hinson Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.com. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Involuntary Treatment Options in Schizophrenia
Apr 17 2024
Involuntary Treatment Options in Schizophrenia
Treatment for schizophrenia is a tough journey for people with the illness but also for caregivers and loved ones. Due to cognitive symptoms, hallucinations, and delusions, a person with schizophrenia may not be able to make decisions on treatment or take care of themselves. When should caregivers step in to legally take control over a person with schizophrenia? What are the types of involuntary treatment? What are the other options available to people with schizophrenia and caregivers? Host Rachel Star Withers, a person with schizophrenia, and co-host Gabe Howard discuss involuntary treatment options in schizophrenia and the moral issues around forcing treatment on a person.  Guest Nicole Drapeau Gillen joins the discussion. Nicole was an IT executive and chief marketing officer turned caregiver and the author of “Schizophrenia & Related Disorders: A Handbook for Caregivers.” Nicole recognized that caregivers like herself often find themselves thrust into this challenging, complex, and stressful situation with little guidance on how to help a loved one with a serious mental illness. In this episode, Rachel speaks about psychiatric advance directives. You can find more information at the National Resource Center on Psychiatric Advance Directives at www.NRC-PAD.org. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Our guest, Nicole Drapeau Gillen, is a caregiver and the author of “Schizophrenia & Related Disorders: A Handbook for Caregivers.” Nicole began her journey as a caregiver in this world of schizophrenia in 2020 when her daughter became sick. After thrashing about for a few years, finding herself frustrated and desperate for information, she wrote the book on caregiving for someone with a serious mental illness. In her book, “Schizophrenia & Related Disorders: A Handbook for Caregivers,” Nicole addresses a myriad of issues caregivers face, including: • From the Beginning of the Journey: Treatment — medication primer, treatment primer, etc.; hospitals, case managers, and more; and doctors (working with, talking to, finding) • Ongoing: Communication, definitions, family and friends; support groups — for yourself and your loved one; and creating your ongoing paper trail • Could Happen Anytime: Housing/homelessness; navigating jail and police; and crisis — suicidal ideation, arrests, run away, etc. • Getting The Right Support Setup: Legal — advanced directives; legal — power of attorney, conservatorship, guardianship; and financial — SSI, SSDI, other government services • Long-term issues: Budgeting — estate planning, trusts and letter of intent; and transition to self support for your loved one • And so much more! As a caregiver, our journey is ever-evolving and fluid. No sooner do we get our loved one on a good path, then things take another twist and turn. This book aims to give you the fundamentals on how to help your loved one no matter where they are on their road to recovery. With clear steps and compassionate insights, you'll find a lifeline in your caregiving journey. https://schizophrenia-caregiver.com/ Schizophrenia & Related Disorders: A Handbook for Caregivers Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
How Suicide Intersects with Schizophrenia
Mar 20 2024
How Suicide Intersects with Schizophrenia
People with schizophrenia have a 10% rate of suicide compared with the general population population’s 1.3% rate of suicide. Suicide is the biggest reason for the decreased life expectancy of people with schizophrenia. Around 40–79% of people with schizophrenia have reported having suicidal thoughts. Why is the rate of suicide higher among people with schizophrenia? Are there specific risk factors that have been identified for our population? And most important, how can we prevent suicide and keep going? Host Rachel Star Withers, who has schizophrenia, and co-host Gabe Howard discuss suicide in relation to schizophrenia in this episode of Inside Schizophrenia. Rachel shares her chronic struggles with the desire to end her life and how she has learned to keep going. Guest Tim “The Sack Man” from SackLifeOfficial joins to share his journey of finding an interesting way to cope with his depression and suicidal ideation through punching bag training. He now travels the country in a VW bus, providing free training for communities. A warning about this episode of Inside Schizophrenia. It involves a frank discussion about the topic of suicide. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- visit the official episode page. Today's guest, "Tim “The Sack Man” from www.sacklifeofficial.com: My name is Tim The Sack Man, and punching bag training has allowed me to overcome clinical depression and suicidal ideation, come off medication, and out of therapy with approval from my doctors. I travel the country in a VW Bus with a punching bag attached, providing free training for communities, and I host a free virtual class every day. I donate a portion of the profits to The National Alliance on Mental Illness. I would like to create free public-access punching bags around the world. By following @sacklifeofficial, together we can leverage our numbers to advertising companies so the ads you see will fund free mental health care for all. Our host, Rachel Star Withers, creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Our co-host, Gabe Howard, is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Community Involvement in Recovery with Schizophrenia
Feb 21 2024
Community Involvement in Recovery with Schizophrenia
There is a huge gap in how people with schizophrenia are expected to recover and then integrate back into society. Many of us are in active treatment and managing symptoms. Now what? How do we function in life? How do we fit into society? We all want friends, to have a purpose, to belong. These desires fall under community involvement. Integration into the community is recognized as an important component of recovery for those with severe mental illness. It is also one of our biggest challenges. Hosts Rachel Star Withers and Gabe Howard explore different programs all over the world that work to assist people with schizophrenia to integrate into their local communities. Faydra Aldridge, CEO of the British Columbia Schizophrenia Society and host of their podcast, “Look Again: Mental Illness Re-Examined,” joins and shares the programs and goals of the BCSS. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Our guest, Faydra Aldridge’s career has spanned over twenty years in the fields of communications, stakeholder relations, and project management in both the private and public sectors. Before joining the BC Schizophrenia Society (BCSS) as the Chief Executive Officer in 2019, Faydra held a leadership role with one of the largest health research institutes in Canada where she oversaw the Stakeholder Relations portfolio. She has experience as a CBC Morning Show Producer and has held executive positions with national and international community health organizations. Faydra draws on this experience in her role as a host of the BCSS podcast “Look Again: Mental Illness Re-Examined.” She is honored to work with such a dedicated team devoted to increasing awareness about serious mental illness and supporting families across BC. About the “Look Again: Mental Illness Re-Examined" Podcast: Navigating and understanding serious mental illnesses can be complex — both for individuals living with the illness as well as their loved ones and community. Hearing firsthand stories can bring comfort in knowing we aren’t alone.  “Look Again: Mental Illness Re-Examined” is a resource to help expand your understanding of the many dimensions of mental illness — and you can go listen to the latest season right now!  This show covers it all. It dives deep into the 'big questions' that families can face during different stages of the mental illness journey, from recognizing initial symptoms to the pursuit of a diagnosis and the search for effective treatment. It shares personal stories from individuals living ‘close’ to schizophrenia or other serious mental illnesses, as well as insights from experienced researchers and medical professionals across the globe. Recent episodes explore topics like social media's influence on mental illness stigma, first-episode psychosis intervention, using virtual reality to treat psychosis, the untold challenges of mental illness care, and tons more! Learn more about serious mental illness - check out “Look Again: Mental Illness Re-Examined,” an original podcast from the BC Schizophrenia Society, available on your favorite podcast app. Our host, Rachel Star Withers, creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Disturbing Thoughts in Schizophrenia
Jan 17 2024
Disturbing Thoughts in Schizophrenia
Impulsive thoughts to harm yourself or others, confusing delusional thoughts, thoughts commanding you to do things — all of these are terrifying to experience. A breakdown in the thought process is a hallmark of schizophrenia. When does an intrusive thought become delusional and something a person might act upon? If a person has disturbing violent thoughts, are they dangerous?  Host Rachel Star Withers, who has schizophrenia, shares her personal struggles with disturbing, intrusive, violent thoughts. Rachel is joined by guest Kassie Love, who is a marriage and family therapist specializing in working with people having unusual thoughts or experiences. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Guest Bio & Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Hosts Therapist Kassie Love, MMFT/MPH Hi there! My name is Kassie Love. In my line of work as a mental health provider, I’ve come to understand that what most people really want is to be heard and supported. Nobody wants to feel like they’re being judged or criticized, especially when they open up in therapy. My patients often tell me they appreciate my compassionate and relatable approach, which they find both valuable and effective. Learn more at www.kassielove.com. Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Grieving the Life You Lost Due to Schizophrenia
Dec 20 2023
Grieving the Life You Lost Due to Schizophrenia
Living with a diagnosis of schizophrenia means that you and those around you will experience multiple losses as you navigate the disorder. It can take away relationships, employment, education, performance, independence, and sense of self.    Will I keep getting worse?  What happens if I have another psychotic episode?  What will my life look like in 10 years?  What if I can’t take care of myself?  It’s normal to grieve the life you or a loved one lost to schizophrenia. But, what does that grief look like and how do you keep going?  Host Rachel Star Withers, a diagnosed schizophrenic, and co-host Gabe Howard explore grieving the life you lost due to schizophrenia in this episode of Inside Schizophrenia.  Guest Paulie VonEdWærd-Benjamin, owner of Earth Star, Heart Root, specializing in holistic, soulful, metaphysical self-healing, joins to share how their life has changed multiple times through living with schizophrenia and how they keep going.   To learn more -- or read the transcript -- visit the official episode page. Guest Bio & Host Bios: My name is Paul VonEdWærd-Benjamin. It is a great honor for us to have this opportunity to tell you a bit of our story so we can help people like ourself with mental conditions, illnesses, and diseases of the brain — and the mind. We see our diagnoses as very good things. They helped set us on a path that was much easier to tread and see and feel toward who We are today. We are stronger because of the knowledge of our symptoms and suffering, not in spite of them. We’ve chosen not to ignore negativity nor pretend it doesn’t exist, but to make it something We and We alone perceive to be positive. An example is when We hallucinate sights, sounds, and intentions (sometimes called “thought insertion”). In the past, these things would scare me. Examples: That person winked at me — why? The song on the radio is intended to convey some special meaning just for me — what is it? I heard a whisper that what I was just thinking about is a good idea — who said that?   Now, instead of fright born of surprise and confusion, We’ve trained ourself to see, listen, and pay attention to these things — and then let them go. Perhaps that person did wink, but they’re 50 feet away from me, we’re in a crowded room, they’re talking to other folks, and there’s a fan blowing on them. Perhaps that song resonates with me in a good way, helping give me perspective I haven’t had before. Perhaps someone did just whisper, but my mind heard what it wanted to — or maybe it was just the wind after all! Get it out in the sunshine and let’s reveal our shadows together so we can *all* heal. That is the purpose We feel driven toward. And have some fun with it! Our host, Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Our co-host, Gabe Howard, is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Helping Caregivers Navigate Schizophrenia
Nov 15 2023
Helping Caregivers Navigate Schizophrenia
When a mental health crisis hits, it can catch everyone off guard—the person experiencing the crisis and those around them. For many with schizophrenia, this is a person’s first psychotic episode. As a caregiver, friend, or loved one, how do you get help for them? And how does the system work? Today, host Rachel Star Withers, a diagnosed schizophrenic, and co-host Gabe Howard are discussing navigating schizophrenia as a caregiver. Their guest, Scott Joffrion, father of an adult son with schizoaffective disorder, also joins to share what he wishes he had known when starting this journey of navigating schizophrenia. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Our guest, Scott Joffrion, is a father of a son with schizoaffective disorder. “My personal mission is to give my loved ones the best possible recovery they can have and to help other families do the same for their loved ones. I want to make a meaningful impact in the region for awareness and education with outcome-based solutions to equip future caregivers.” “My son is my best friend that has been through hell and back with me.” www.nami.org Host Rachel Star Withers, creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Host Gabe Howard, is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
LGBTQIA+ Community and Schizophrenia
Oct 18 2023
LGBTQIA+ Community and Schizophrenia
The LGBTQIA+ community and psychiatry have had a very troubled past, especially when it comes to schizophrenia. Some of the first theories for the causes of schizophrenia actually centered around bisexual desires. There were even theories that people living with schizophrenia were all asexual due to the negative symptoms of schizophrenia. And those are just two examples.   In this episode, we discuss LGBTQIA+ issues in relation to schizophrenia, what psychiatry got wrong, and what current studies are showing. We also hear directly from an openly transgender man who lives with schizophrenia.  We’re joined by guest Lucas Silveira, a Canadian vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter from Toronto. He was the frontman of The Cliks, and is credited with being the first openly transgender man to have signed to a major record label. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Our guest, Lucas Silveira, frontman of The Cliks, now a solo artist, made history as the first openly transgender man signed by a major label with Warner Music, Tommy Boy/Silver Label in 2006. He's graced global stages alongside Cyndi Lauper, The B-52’s, Debbie Harry, Tegan and Sara, The Cult, and The New York Dolls. As co-host of Vice's Shine True in 2021, he expanded into TV. With over 25 years of live musical experience, Lucas is a seasoned and heartfelt musician and vocalist. Presently a solo performer, he skillfully accompanies himself on acoustic guitar and piano, and has shared his music across the world, from Canada and the US to Europe and Asia. He has given keynote speeches for Warner Music Canada, Hydro One, Corus Entertainment, and EGALE Canada, spanning schools to corporations, addressing his experience as a transgender musician in the mainstream music industry, trans community, lateral violence, and mental health awareness. "The Goddamn Flowers" marks Lucas Silveira's stark departure, delving into personal turmoil, love, and darkness. Written over nine years, amidst mental health struggles and diagnosed schizoaffective disorder in 2021, this album challenges stigmas. Lucas champions the role of medication in fostering creativity and offers a transformative journey from chaos to enlightenment, proving the power of turning pain into artistry. Our host, Rachel Star Withers, creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Our cohost, Gabe Howard, is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Stigma in the Medical Community Against Schizophrenia
Sep 20 2023
Stigma in the Medical Community Against Schizophrenia
When managing schizophrenia, many of us have come to accept that there is a stigma around the disorder. But what happens when the stigma is from the medical professionals who are supposed to be treating, diagnosing, and helping you? Mental health professionals can even turn away people with a schizophrenia diagnosis. When we've been turned away by a therapist, psychologist, what happens next? Where do we end up? Studies have found that mental health professionals have a tendency to view people with serious mental illnesses more negatively than positively, characterizing them as manipulative, lacking in willpower, disturbing, ineffective, and difficult to communicate with. In this episode of Inside Schizophrenia, host Rachel Star Withers and co-host Gabe Howard look at schizophrenia stigma in the medical community. Joining is guest Desire’ Brown, a mental health counselor who has worked with various social work organizations. She currently works with Monarch, which provides hope, promotes wellness, and empowers individuals and families impacted by mental illness, substance abuse, intellectual and developmental disabilities and traumatic brain injury. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- visit the official episode page. Our guest, Desire’ Lillian Brown, MBA, BA, is currently working on her second master’s degree. She has been counseling adults in mental health for 8 years and working with SPMI diagnostics for 4 years. She works with clients from all walks of life. “I love helping others, it is a calling from GOD.” — Desire’ Monarch is nationally accredited by The Joint Commission. We employ approximately 1,400 staff members, many who work with individuals and their families to identify and overcome many of the barriers they often face by providing varying levels of support. To join our team, visit Monarch Careers to learn more and view available positions. Join us today in making our mission, vision and values a reality. Monarch provides hope, promotes wellness, and empowers individuals and families impacted by mental illness, substance use disorders, intellectual and developmental disabilities, and traumatic brain injury. Our host, Rachel Star Withers, creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Our co-host, Gabe Howard, is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Early Indicators of Schizophrenia
Aug 16 2023
Early Indicators of Schizophrenia
Up to 80% of people with schizophrenia aren't aware they're experiencing early schizophrenia symptoms. Most people with schizophrenia go through a prodromal stage, where there's subtle changes in mood, thinking, and behavior. It's an evolution of the symptoms to come. Early indicators vary based on the age they start. An adult who develops schizophrenia will experience different signs than a child who develops the condition. Host Rachel Star Withers and cohost Gabe Howard explore the early signs of schizophrenia in children, teens, and adults. Joining to discuss the future of identifying biomarkers for schizophrenia is Carlos Larrauri, a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner who also lives with schizophrenia. Mr. Larrauri co-chairs the steering committee for the Accelerating Medicines Partnership® Schizophrenia (AMP® SCZ), which is working to identify early indicators of schizophrenia. To learn more about the research AMP SCZ is undertaking, please visit www.ampscz.org. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Our guest, Carlos A. Larrauri, MSN, is co-chair of the Accelerating Medicines Partnership® Schizophrenia (AMP® SCZ) and has formerly served on the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and NAMI Miami-Dade County Board of Directors. Diagnosed with schizophrenia at 23 years old, access to quality mental health care, community-based treatment, and early intervention afforded him the best opportunity for recovery. Mr. Larrauri is pursuing a law degree at the University of Michigan Law School and a concurrent master in public administration at the Harvard Kennedy School, where he was Zuckerman Fellow at Harvard’s Center for Public Leadership. He’s board certified as a family nurse practitioner and psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner and formerly lectured at the University of Miami and Miami Dade College. Mr. Larrauri aspires to interface advocacy and research to reduce health inequities for people living with mental illness. To learn more about Carlos and his work, visit his website or his LinkedIn. The Accelerating Medicines Partnership® (AMP®) program—Schizophrenia (SCZ) is a public-private partnership between the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the European Medicines Agency, and multiple public and private organizations. Launched in 2020 and managed by the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health, the AMP SCZ program addresses the critical need for more effective treatments for people with schizophrenia and related mental health conditions. The overarching aim is to improve our understanding of disease pathways and identify new and better targets for treatment. Our host, Rachel Star Withers, creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.com. Our cohost, Gabe Howard, is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Serial Killers and Schizophrenia: Facts vs. Fiction
Jul 19 2023
Serial Killers and Schizophrenia: Facts vs. Fiction
True crime TV shows, podcasts, and books love to explore the minds of serial killers. To perform such heinous acts a person must be “insane,” “crazy,” and “mentally unstable.” Over time, the “schizophrenic serial killer” became the monster behind many of these crimes. But is it true? Where did the stereotype of serial killers having schizophrenia come from? When was schizophrenia first considered to be a violent mental illness? What's the truth to the myth of the schizophrenic serial killer? In this episode of Inside Schizophrenia, host Rachel Star Withers, a diagnosed schizophrenic, and co-host Gabe Howard track down when schizophrenia first became associated with violence and how the myth grew.  They are joined by guest Dr. Ann Wolbert Burgess, a pioneer in the assessment and treatment of victims of trauma and abuse who helped shape the FBI's behavioral analysis methods in her prolific study of the criminal mind. Warning: this episode of Inside Schizophrenia contains graphic content and offensive language about people with schizophrenia that some may find upsetting. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Guest, Ann Wolbert Burgess, D.N.Sc., APRN, FAAN, is an internationally recognized pioneer in the assessment and treatment of victims of trauma and abuse, and author of A Killer by Design: Murderers, Mindhunters, and My Quest to Decipher the Criminal Mind. She has received numerous honors including the Sigma Theta Tau International Audrey Hepburn Award, the American Nurses’ Association Hildegard Peplau Award, and the Sigma Theta Tau International Episteme Laureate Award. Her courtroom testimony has been described as “groundbreaking,” and she has been called a “nursing pathfinder.” Her research with victims began when she co-founded, with Boston College sociologist Lynda Lytle Holmstrom, one of the first hospital-based crisis counseling programs at Boston City Hospital. She then worked with FBI Academy special agents to study serial offenders, and the links between child abuse, juvenile delinquency, and subsequent perpetration. Her work with Boston College nursing colleague Carol Hartman led to the study of very young victims and the impact of trauma on their growth and development, their families and communities. Her work continues in the study of elder abuse in nursing homes, cyberstalking, and internet sex crimes. She teaches courses in Victimology, Forensic Science, Forensic Mental Health, Case Studies in Forensics and Forensic Science Lab. Host, Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Co-Host, Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Is It Healthy to Find Humor in Schizophrenia?
Jun 21 2023
Is It Healthy to Find Humor in Schizophrenia?
Are you having trouble with mental illness or are you really good at managing it? Humor can heal or hurt. Is schizophrenia something to joke about? Should you make jokes about mental illness? Schizophrenia is a very serious topic, but it can be exhausting to be serious all the time. Host Rachel Star Withers, a diagnosed schizophrenic, and co-host Gabe Howard find the humor in having schizophrenia in this episode of Inside Schizophrenia.  TikTok star comedian Kody Green joins to share his journey that includes addiction, incarceration, schizophrenia, and comedy. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- visit the official episode page. Guest Bio Kody Green (He/Him) is 28 years old with a diagnosis of undifferentiated schizophrenia. Kody is also the founder of a nonprofit, a motivational speaker, and content creator with over 1 million followers across social media platforms. He has struggled in the past with drug addiction, incarceration, and serious mental health issues. In order to be a better advocate and speaker, Kody has been trained as a peer support specialist, recovery coach, and suicide prevention specialist. Now, Kody shares his stories about his struggles and how to navigate through recovery, mental health issues, and life after incarceration. He chooses to pursue motivational speaking and mental health advocacy for schizophrenia awareness, drug recovery, and second- chance opportunities because he has dealt with these struggles in his own life.  "After my release from incarceration and my schizophrenia diagnosis, I thought there was nothing left for me. When I started sharing my story online, I did not think anyone would care. After gaining 1 million followers on social media, I realized how my struggles and my story could help others.” Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Hosts Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
How Culture Influences Schizophrenia
May 17 2023
How Culture Influences Schizophrenia
Schizophrenia affects approximately 24 million people worldwide. But does schizophrenia present the same way in every country? How do culture, religion, tradition, or even politics influence the presentation of schizophrenia? Cross-cultural awareness of psychiatric symptoms helps us to understand our ever-changing global society. In today’s episode, hosts Rachel Star Withers and Gabe Howard explore studies and cases across the world and throughout history to discover how culture influences schizophrenia and its treatment. Joining is guest Nidhi Sinha, a final year PhD student in psychology who has been researching thematic analysis of individual experiences of audio hallucinations in India. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- visit the episode page. Guest Bio Nidhi Sinha is a final year PhD student in cognitive psychology at the Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad (IITH), where she is exploring the affective, cognitive, and cultural cues of subclinical depression. She is also a visiting researcher at the Cognitive Science lab, International Institute of Information Technology Hyderabad, India. As a former CBT psychologist, Nidhi has worked with people with mental health conditions, providing therapy and support. Her current research focuses on improving the psychometric properties of existing diagnostic systems while exploring the subjective experiences of people with mental health conditions, such as psychosis and depression. Nidhi believes that understanding the social, political, and cultural factors of mental illness is crucial in developing effective diagnostic and intervention methods. She advocates introducing indigenous and traditional healing practices, such as meditation and yoga, to name a few. Her work on mental disorders (qualitative and quantitative) has been published and presented in top national and international journals and conferences. Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Hosts Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Accepting a Diagnosis of Schizophrenia
Apr 19 2023
Accepting a Diagnosis of Schizophrenia
One of the scariest things about schizophrenia is the very beginning, getting that diagnosis and learning that you — or a person that you love — has a lifelong serious mental illness. Especially in the beginning, it can be a difficult thing to accept. In fact, many people reject the idea that they're sick at all, often choosing to think, “Hey, I have a problem, but I don't need help” instead. However, accepting a diagnosis of schizophrenia is the first step to getting treatment, which is the first step toward living a full and fulfilling life. Host Rachel Star Withers, a diagnosed schizophrenic, and co-host Gabe Howard share their personal journeys coming to acceptance of their diagnosis and ways that family, friends, and caregivers can help their loved ones in this episode of Inside Schizophrenia.  Guest Leif Gregersen, writer, teacher, and public speaker living with schizoaffective disorder, joins to discuss his journey of accepting his diagnosis and his need for treatment. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Guest Bio Leif Gregersen is a writer, teacher, and public speaker living with schizoaffective disorder. He currently has twelve books in print, three of which are memoirs of his lived experience with mental illness. His most recent book, "Alert and Oriented x3: A Snapshot of a Severe Psychosis" is available as a free download from his website, www.edmontonwriter.com. Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Hosts Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) for Schizophrenia Treatment
Mar 15 2023
Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) for Schizophrenia Treatment
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) has been shown to be an effective treatment for people with schizophrenia, especially those with treatment-resistant schizophrenia. However, it’s not often brought up as an option for treatment. Host Rachel Star Withers, a diagnosed schizophrenic, and co-host Gabe Howard explore Rachel’s own past treatment with ECT, the intense side effect of memory loss, and why ECT is not being offered to more people with schizophrenia. Today’s guest is “Ashley” who is currently undergoing electroconvulsive therapy and shares her journey of navigating ECT while being a mother. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Guest Bio “Ashley” has schizoaffective disorder, bipolar type. She had a series of acute ECT treatments 4 years ago and has been receiving maintenance treatments ever since. Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Hosts Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.comm. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
What is Psychological Resilience in Schizophrenia?
Feb 15 2023
What is Psychological Resilience in Schizophrenia?
Why are some people with schizophrenia able to live alone and others can’t? Why do some seem to recover while others have symptoms that persist for their entire lives? Why is suicide the leading cause of premature death in people with schizophrenia? Many people say the answer lies in psychological resilience. So, does that mean some people have more psychological resilience than others? Does having a mental disorder mean your brain is less resilient to start with? Hosts Rachel Star Withers and Gabe Howard explore the concept of psychological resilience and how it is connected to living with schizophrenia. Dr. Nicole Washington, a psychiatrist and the co-host of Healthline’s Inside Bipolar, joins to give a medical perspective on psychological resilience. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Guest Bio Dr. Nicole Washington is an ABMS board certified psychiatrist and the chief medical officer of Elocin Psychiatric Services, a primarily virtual practice where she focuses on the mental health needs of the busy professional. Dr. Washington has spent most of her career caring and advocating for people who aren’t typically consumers of mental health services, namely underserved communities and high-performing professionals. Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Hosts Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.com. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Managing Family Dynamics with Schizophrenia
Jan 18 2023
Managing Family Dynamics with Schizophrenia
When a family member receives a schizophrenia diagnosis, it can dramatically change the dynamics of your family. For example, one-third of people with schizophrenia live with a family member. Families can provide emotional support, financial support, and advocate for better treatment options. Host Rachel Star Withers, a diagnosed schizophrenic, and co-host Gabe Howard explore how schizophrenia can affect family dynamics in this episode of Inside Schizophrenia.  Guest Elfy Scott joins. She is the author of “The One Thing We’ve Never Spoken About: Exposing Our Untold Mental Health Crisis,” a book that focuses on the silence and stigma that still surrounds complex mental health conditions. She shares her experiences growing up in a family with a parent who lived with schizophrenia. To learn more -- or read the transcript -- please visit the official episode page. Guest Bio Elfy Scott is an award-winning freelance journalist, presenter, and producer. Her book, “The One Thing We’ve Never Spoken About: Exposing Our Untold Mental Health Crisis,” is an investigation into the failings of Australia’s mental healthcare system, grounded in a personal story of a mother-daughter relationship. Elfy grew up in a household where her mother’s schizophrenia was rarely, if ever, spoken about. They navigated this silence outside the family home too; for many years, this complex mental health condition was treated as an open secret. Over the past two decades, we have started talking more about common mental health conditions like depression and anxiety. But complex conditions like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and psychosis have been left behind, as have many of the people who live with these conditions and those who care for them. Part memoir, part deep-dive investigation, “The One Thing We’ve Never Spoken About” is filled with rage at how Australia’s public discourse, emergency services, and healthcare systems continue to fail so many people. It is also a work of care, telling the little-heard stories of people who live with these conditions and work at the front lines of mental health. Above all, this timely, compelling book is informed by hope and courage, breaking down taboos and asking big questions about vulnerability, justice, and duty of care. Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Hosts Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.com. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Can Schizophrenia Coping Techniques Be Helpful?
Dec 21 2022
Can Schizophrenia Coping Techniques Be Helpful?
Coping techniques used by people with schizophrenia account for a 25% variance in their quality of life. Unfortunately, people who have psychotic disorders tend to use predominantly harmful or ineffective coping techniques.  Hosts Rachel Star Withers and Gabe Howard are seeking to change that by sharing coping techniques for managing schizophrenia and help people understand why effective coping techniques can be life changing.  Guest Michelle Mariscal joins who blogs about her journey with schizophrenia and shares some coping techniques she has found to work for her over the years. To learn more, or read the transcript, visit the official episode page. Guest Bio Michelle Mariscal holds a master’s in psychology, a bachelor’s in sociology, and has much life experience dealing with a serious mental health disorder. She resides on the Central Coast in California with her husband of 30 years, 4 children, and her granddaughter. Read her blog by clicking here. Inside Schizophrenia Podcast Hosts Rachel Star Withers creates videos documenting her schizophrenia, ways to manage and let others like her know they are not alone and can still live an amazing life. She has written Lil Broken Star: Understanding Schizophrenia for Kids and a tool for schizophrenics, To See in the Dark: Hallucination and Delusion Journal. Fun Fact: She has wrestled alligators. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website, RachelStarLive.com. Gabe Howard is an award-winning writer and speaker who lives with bipolar disorder. He is the author of the popular book, "Mental Illness is an Asshole and other Observations," available from Amazon; signed copies are also available directly from the author. Gabe makes his home in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio. He lives with his supportive wife, Kendall, and a Miniature Schnauzer dog that he never wanted, but now can’t imagine life without. To learn more about Gabe, please visit his website, gabehoward.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices