29 February 2016

Black & Blue by Patrick O'Sullivan

I have been a fan of Patrick O'Sullivan for years because of the sole reason that we share the same birthday.

I have often, what happened to O'Sullivan, where did he go? Well, unfortunately, this article explains it. His own essay on his life of abuse and how an unhealthy path to the NHL led to confusion. It's sad.

The article is blunt, and starts off with: "My father used to beat the shit out of me."

Read the full article here.

10 February 2016

Could a new wave of talking therapies replace CBT? YES!

This article struck a nerve for me because I am not a one-size therapy fits all type of person. As a generalist, I rely on many therapeutic approaches and hone in on one (or two or three) that best fits my client and their needs. CBT tends to be a commonly talked about therapy because it has been around for a long time, has a simple understandable flow to it, and has helped many people. But as this one client said "It (CBT) was all about changing my thought patterns which I just couldn’t do – my thinking was the way it was." Therefore, CBT is not for all.

Have a read of this UK based article to see more resources on new wave CBT therapies, such as Compassion Focused Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy.

09 February 2016

Ex-dean explains why helicopter parenting is ruining a generation

While I like to focus on the positive over the negative, this article discusses a serious topic that I have seen myself when I used to recruit for the Faculty of Human Ecology at the University of Manitoba. But to stay positive, here is a helpful quote from the article.
And how can parents help their children become self-sufficient? Teach them the skills they’ll need in real life, and give them enough leash to practice those skills on their own... And have them do chores. “Chores build a sense of accountability. They build life skills and a work ethic.” 
Read the full article here.

07 February 2016

#LDS resources for managing depression #Twitterstake

"As a Mormon who struggles with chronic depression, I’ve spent a lot of time searching for LDS resources on depression and suicide prevention. Listed below are some of the most helpful talks and articles that I have found. Before you read or listen to them, I want you to know that I have used these resources in conjunction with proper medical and professional help. Please understand that there is absolutely no shame in seeking outside help."

See the full list of resources in this LDS Living article.

06 February 2016

After A Disaster, Kids Don't Want To Talk About The Disaster

Ever read an article that just gets stuck in your belief system? This one did it for me. Kids don't want to talk about the trauma, they want to deal with current issues.

To quote straight from the article:

"A lot of the kids were like, 'We don't want to draw. We're not interested in talking about our Katrina experience,' " says Powell, now at the University of Illinois. "They said, 'We want to talk about all the other issues we're facing. There is a lot of scary stuff going on in our community. We don't know how to keep ourselves safe.'
"We realized these kids don't need to reprocess the storm over and over again," she says. "They need to talk about other adversities related to the storm."
Read the full article here.

And just to highlight one other piece:

What can parents do to help their kids cope with traumatic events?
If a parent is really stressed, the child will see that and have higher anxiety. That's just one of the things to recognize. Also, parents need to provide information to kids about what happened in the disaster, but not so much that they're terrified. Say there's a school shooting. Tell kids that, yes, this happened, but tell them what kinds of measures are in place to keep them safe. You also want to limit media. A lot of kids get secondary traumatic stress all over again. Listen to them, and don't minimize what's going on in school. Kids are so smart and so resilient and so creative. Most kids will overcome a traumatic event, given they have strong support networks and are in a safe environment.

05 February 2016

Home Economists Launch Best-ever Homegrown Cookbook

What better way to celebrate Canada than with delicious home-cooked food? It connects people to their roots, unites families at the heart of the home and welcomes friends to the table.
From coast to coast, the goodness of Canada shines in Homegrown: Celebrating the Canadian Foods We Grow, Raise and Produce – an exciting new cookbook from the Ontario Home Economics Association (OHEA), written by witty, award-winning author and TV personality Mairlyn Smith.
With 160 easy-to-follow recipes triple-tested by Professional Home Economists and students from OHEA, plus helpful tips galore − this book is a winner to give or to receive.
‘Professional Home Economist Mairlyn Smith proves that Canada can be the key ingredient in any meal,’ writes Publisher, Whitecap Books. Shortlisted favourites include Borscht, Herb Stuffed Pork Loin Roast, Turkey Tourtiere, Slow Cooker Beef & Barley Stew, Gluten-Free PEI Potato Lasagna, Festive Fruit & Nut Coleslaw, Caramelized Onion & Cheddar Scones, Pumpkin Muffin-Top Cookies and Blueberry, Pear & Hazelnut Crisp − to name a few.
Tagged to each down-to-earth recipe is a wealth of nutrition information and a carb counter to assist people living with diabetes.  Update your knowledge of wholesome food produced in Canada and enjoy the convenience of seasonal menus ready-planned for you!
Explore Canada by travelling the pages of Homegrown. Discover foods that are unique to each geographic region
Look for family and regional favourites in this showcase of Canadian cuisine.
In stores, Dec. 1, 2015, Homegrown is an ideal gift for beginners, seasoned cooks and collectors.
For more information, please contact:
OHEA Public Relations Coordinator, Mary Carver, P.H.Ec. (613) 599-7341 / mcarver@ohea.on.ca Recipes and photos available upon request.

The Ontario Home Economics Association (OHEA), a self-regulated body of Professional Home Economists, promotes high professional standards among its members so that they may assist families and individuals to achieve and maintain a desirable quality of life. (www.ohea.on.ca)

04 February 2016

Caregiving for Older Adults with Disabilities: Present Costs, Future Challenges

Fellow Human Ecologist, Dr. Janet Fast's latest research on caregivers was published in the Institute for Research on Public Policy.

The summary from the article reads (read the full article here):

Being an unpaid caregiver for one’s adult family members is increasingly common in Canada as growing numbers of disabled individuals need help with tasks such as housekeeping, meal preparation and transportation. Although the amount of care most caregivers provide to adult family members and friends is modest, the responsibilities can be demanding and can present financial risks.
The number of people requiring care is forecast to rise dramatically in coming years, while families’ capacity to meet those demands will decrease as a result of demographic and socio-economic factors. In this study, Janet Fast assesses the financial and other challenges faced by caregivers and their employers. She also examines what employers and governments are currently doing, as well as what they should do, to mitigate the negative effects of caregiving.
The vast majority of working-age caregivers are employed and work full time. Many experience conflicting demands between paid work and caregiving and have to miss days at work or reduce their paid work hours. Those who provide many hours of care, who reside with the care recipient or care for someone with a cognitive disability are more likely to quit their jobs, and they may even be fired. As such, they are at greater risk of experiencing poor social, economic, physical and mental health outcomes. Clearly, caregivers bear a disproportionate share of the costs of caring for those with long-term health problems and disabilities.
The issue also presents challenges for employers, for example, increased turnover, absenteeism, reduced productivity and more demands on employee benefit programs. Some employers offer supports such as flexible work hours, direct compensation and information for caregiver employees. However, there is a marked discrepancy between the way employers treat new parents and how they treat people with care responsibilities.
Although over the past decade governments have introduced new policies to enhance work-care reconciliation, there is no comprehensive public policy strategy to support caregivers and to mitigate the negative consequences of caregiving.
We need to correct this urgently, Fast argues. Canada should follow the example of the United Kingdom and Australia, which have recognized caregivers’ contributions, introduced an allowance or wage to help cover caregivers’ income security needs, and explicitly codified caregivers’ rights in legislation. Policy-makers should also extend care service providers’ mandates to include caregivers as clients, introduce compulsory assessment of caregivers’ needs and recognize caregivers’ right to have those needs met.
She calls for a comprehensive caregiver policy strategy based on four pillars: (1) recognizing caregivers and their rights; (2) adequate, accessible and affordable services for care receivers and caregivers; (3) work-care reconciliation measures; and (4) measures to protect caregivers’ income security.

03 February 2016

Parenting a child with ADHD

From Counselling Connect
The Canadian Counsellors and Psychotherapy Association has a blog, called Counselling Connect, that receives frequent updates, not just for counsellors, but for everyone.

There was a recent post, Parenting Children with ADHD that stood out. The author focused on recent research (within the past five years) to help us understand that parents are not alone in their exhaustion of parenting an ADHD child, and that there are helpful resources out there. Have a read.

02 February 2016

Nomophobia: that feeling you get when you're smart phone is not nearby or connected

The CBC recently covered work from Timothy Caulfield from the University of Alberta, regarding what our cell phones do to our brain. The article discusses how mobile devices can be a Brain Drain and how no one is immune.
Studies show that people in the developed world are now spending upwards of eight hours per day staring at their smartphones and other screen devices — more time than they spend sleeping.
Read the full article here.

01 February 2016

Screen time, in moderation, not linked to youngsters' depression

There is a lot of fear around parenting in the digital age, and technology has often been given a bad rep when looking at exposure for children. While I believe in moderation, it was great to see this article from CBC encouraging parents to limit their children's screen time to two hours a day, because under that amount of time there is limited impact, and even a positive.
Overall, in smaller doses, screen time appeared to be a good thing. Compared to children who had no screen time at all, those who got a half hour daily were 8 per cent less likely to be depressed and kids allowed an hour a day had 12 per cent lower odds.
Read the full article here.