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The reason

Apr 15 2008 | Comments 27

So why has this blog gotten so spotty? Well, aside from my personal problems, for a while the plan was to kind of ease away from a mental health blog and go forward with other topics — namely, a books blog. So it seemed best to kind of gradually wean everyone off of the blog, as we might with Effexor (if your doctor does it right), so that when I started the books blog, it wouldn’t be so jarring. Or something to that effect, anyway.

The books blog, however, isn’t really happening. There are some complications, so now I’m faced with figuring out what will happen to this blog — which isn’t at all clear to me. I’ll let you know asap. (Do you say that “A.S.A.P.”? Or like tree sap with “a” in front of it? I think saying “asap” is funnier.)

As long as we have this opportunity to rethink things, let me know what kind of topics you’d most like addressed.

liz | 10:20 PM | Uncategorized

scott Says:

Some suggestions: the war, the economy and its effects on the working man, the weather, depression, books, politics, your hamster, pets in general, what its like to be a contributing editor, anything…….just keep this blog coming. I just found you and don’t want to lose you.

Apr 15 10:56 PM

BPD in OKC Says:

I say it like A.S.A.P. I think asap is funnier, but I never say it that way.

I’d like you to stay a mental health blog because I think it helps your readers who are going through stuff in their own lives. I blog not only for my mental health but the mental health of those who read it.

Apr 15 11:11 PM

Laura Says:

My vote is to continue with the award winning blog on mental health issues that (a) you are so widely known for and (b) seem to be near and dear to your heart. I miss the 3 a day postings on MH issues. Or even the 1x a day postings…whatever you can do while protecting your own health. Best -

Apr 16 12:03 AM

MItchell Gobrick Says:

Are you saying you’re lost too?

Apr 16 3:12 AM

Fallingleaf Says:

LOL … Webster’s Online has it as “ASAP,” but I think it’s used as an adverb often enough in current parlance to merit a proper lower-casing of its letters :-)

As for your blog’s theme, it’s your blog. Readers who are here only for a specific topic might wander elsewhere if you change topics; while readers who are here for a dose of idiosyncratic wit would naturally tend to remain. Blog Identity Crisis, or BIC (or bic, if you prefer) is rough because it really weighs on the mind – I wish you the best of luck in coming through it. I went through the same thing once and wound up just shutting my blog down. I also tried the weening approach, but I just couldn’t find a way to make it work – part of my problem was that some of my aggression was starting to spill over to my readers, and I couldn’t allow that. So for me, it was more like Blog Identity and Temper CHange (feel free to leave that one capitalized).

Apr 16 7:40 AM

rachel Says:

I’ll only read if you’re writing on mental health issues, preferably my problem: not being able to get treatment.

Apr 16 11:54 AM

Stan Says:

Dearest Liz:
I believe sometimes blogs and web sites tend to run in cycles of activity. I know personally; I have been off dealing with real life stuff for the past week. I had a friend I needed to see regarding a possible cancer relapse, a new job medley of visits from physicals to background checks, finding a new place to live far far away in a distant galaxy, the whole stress filled process of moving, and I’m now dealing with adult onset type 2 diabetes do to that proclaimed bipolar wonder drug Seroquel, as an added thrill ride to this amusement park type journey called my life. Which has me reeling emotionally somewhat at this time as I try to adjust to a brand new life style. So my plate has been a little on the full side, and I haven’t felt like doing much the past couple of days except sleeping.
I believe that this is a wonderful blog only because of your intellectual insight, abilities to spark that interest, and passion within others (You didn’t get selected as the number 1 bipolar blog for no reason Liz). I say please just keep plugging away on these mental health issues that affect us all. We that either live with, or are interested in this subject matter appreciate your affords in keeping everyone up to date, and informed; as well as allowing us a place to give our written opinions on issues that affect our lives and society as a whole.
You have done an incredible job here in this Blog in spite of the obvious obstacles that stand in your own personal path. If you’re in the midst of a reevaluation; please keep in mind you are a powerful positive force in the real lives of countless others with this Blog. I’m beginning to realize and discern that I see this blog format as more of a community of opinion, inspiration, and truth. Sometimes reevaluation also means readjusting with clarity what really has worth and value in our own personal lives. Whatever you decide to do Liz, I whole heartedly believe you will make the right choice for you.
With appreciation and caring:

Apr 16 12:56 PM

Liz (not Spikol) Says:

Hi Liz,

I just discovered your blog a few days ago while doing some research on bipolar disorder. It was an indescribable comfort to watch your videos. I am very much in love with a woman who is grappling with so many of the same issues that you have worked through. Your experiences resonated so strongly that I cried for days and still, when I re-watch your videos I am overcome with hope that she too can get significantly better. My god, I wish I could hug you! Thank you so much.

I sincerely hope you keep writing this blog, regardless of what the focus might become. It’s clear that it means a lot to a lot of people. Hell, it means a lot to me and I’m not even a long time reader!

Apr 16 5:50 PM

Nancy Says:

Yours is the only mental health blog that my 25 year old daughter would even consider reading. Like me, she appreciates your authenticity and candor as well as your intelligence and sense of humor. You strike a really good balance of sharing information and personal observations. And you do so with grace & compassion and without bitterness or condescending judgement. There are several excellent blogs that I read on a regular basis but I find myself uniquely drawn to yours. We also love your videos and your cute tracker. A bit of cute and whimsy next to the cost of war in Iraq–>good juxtaposition, Liz. I read your blog primarily for mental health issues, stories and information but I also enjoy your occassional posts on unrelated topics. Perhaps you need a sabbatical but please know how much my daughter and I would miss you! Thanks for all of your time, efforts, wisdom and compassion, dear Liz.
~~Nancy & Em

Apr 16 10:46 PM

ttq Says:

You would totally mess up my blogging habits if you stop. In my favorites I have a folder of the blogs I read everyday. If you stop now my whole routine will become chaotic. All the blogs I read give me a little something that I need.

Totally selfish on my part, but you have given me so much information that I can actually talk to my psych dr about other treatments and managing my symptoms..

Apr 17 1:42 PM

Sara Says:

Liz, I weep when I see you suffering like this because you’re such a talented and funny writer/person and well loved by your fans. I think your treatment with all those drugs stinks frankly and is messing with your mind; I hope you re-evaluate and try harder to get some of those dosages down before you get pushed into disability. Effexor is wickedly hard to taper — counting out those little pellets from each capsule one by one — or getting it in liquid form from a compounding pharmacist or maybe switching to Prozac. Get some help from someone who knows (admittedly hard to find) if you can. If you do it slowly enough you can get your life back.

Apr 17 2:07 PM

Mark Krusen Says:

I just came over to your blog from a link from Stans blog.Say that 10 times holding your tongue! :) I hope you keep writing on the Mental Health issues. Your very good at it.

Apr 17 2:33 PM

Kent Says:

I think a-sap sounds better than saying each letter, also, but it might be more confusing to the uninitiated (those who don’t already know what the letters stand for). Anything you write is likely to be interesting and witty if it’s about a subject that is really important to you, Liz, but I particularly like the idea of writing about how the economy and employment (or lack of employment) effect the mental health of average people. It’s also interesting to hear about your pets, and I’m glad you have another hamster – hopefully a more robust one. I can imagine how sad you must’ve been to lose each of the other two, and it’s nice to see that you still have some companionship of that type. So I think the economy and pets would both be interesting topics to see addressed here.

Apr 17 11:23 PM

uke Says:

I’ve got a solution that should please everybody… blog about books on mental health.

Apr 18 3:59 AM

UnderTheThresher Says:

A blog that’s honest about mental health issues is part of a movement that can make life better for millions or billions of people. A blog about books is… about books. Don’t get me wrong; I love books. But every time a books blogger is struck down, 10 more rise to take their place. Where as writing about mental health, even if it becomes a smaller portion of your posts, makes you a much-needed activist in an important cause.

I say asap, as in “it’s [maple] sugerin’ time, Jose – get tap buckets asap.”

Apr 18 4:53 AM

Stephany Says:

When we lose blogs, we lose the author, and the commenters that have become a sort of family community.

My suggestion to you Liz, is to follow your heart, that is where you compass is for direction.

Best wishes,
Stephany at soulful sepulcher blog

Apr 18 7:09 AM

Alison Hymes Says:

I think you should write about whatever you want to write about Liz. I will read no matter what. But one selfish suggestion from this homesick Philly grrl: write a little about Philly sometimes. Write about hot pretzels sold on the street, hoagies everywhere, the 3 days of spring Philly gets, the humidity, the diverse and wonderful residents of Philly, the street people, the Academy of Music, whatever strikes your fancy. I wish you the best in whatever you choose.

Apr 18 10:17 AM

Wanda Says:

If you write, I will read. Please keep on writing. Keep shooting videos. Your sense of humor is a big part of my daily therapy.

Apr 18 12:15 PM

Ana Lima Says:

I just knew of your blog on “furiousseasons”. I won’t read about Obama. If I were American I would vote for him. But I can find about him in so many places! But on mental health we need everyone voices. Tapering Efexor? It’s hell.
I can understand that it’s hard to have our personality linked to this issue.
I respect your choice.
I cannot speak too much about it either for there’s stigma; people get tired of the “subject”; they have no idea what these powerful drugs can do with our minds.
I’ll be back.
Hope you find your way.

Apr 18 4:39 PM

Moira Says:

Once upon a time a few years ago, I followed a link from the Washington Post to you and to Philip Dawdy at Furious Seasons. I like everything about this blog! I will continue to read no matter what the trouble with you becomes.

I read Furious Seasons for homework. Dawdy has got his fang in the jugular of mental health in America today.

Is restricting one’s beat to mental health reporting healthy for the moody journalist herself or himself?

All the best,

Apr 18 9:50 PM

Joana Golding Says:

If you are tapering Effexor go slowly.
It took me 18 months to taper and when 225 mg. It got more difficult at the end. When I was on 35 mg I started feeling the brain zaps everybody mention. Should had stay on that dose for perhaps 1 year not 2 months. After finally being off Efexor for 3 months I felt so terrible that I had to go to the drug again. Of course I was diagnosed “depressed” or “bipolar” or no matter what. But I KNOW it was withdrawal symptoms for I did neither felt depresses or anxious. I simply was in constant pain. Desperated like I never felt in my life. Now I’ll have to be on this drug for the rest of my life. Yeap! 125 mg.
Plus Seroquel and clonazepam.
Unfortunately Charles Medawar’s socialaudit has closed the data from people who wrote their while was tapering. My story is there. I don’t have the streingh to tell it over and over again trying to explain that it was a huge mistake by 2 psychiatrists and so on…
It’s too boring and people don’t trust patients words. They listen to the psychiatrist.
“-She’s depressed.”
“-Yes! I’m depressed.”
“-Oh! My wife/ friend/ daughter/ student/ neighbor is on drug for depression. She is depressed.”

Apr 19 4:00 PM

mike Says:

I like to read about your personal experiences with mental health and the treatments you receive for them. It is nice to be able to relate to someone else trying to regain their sanity. People (like me) who suffer from mental illness are going to be your primary audience I’d say. So please stick with that topic.

Apr 21 11:48 AM

Lynn Says:

First the obvious–you do what you need/want to do and we’ll deal with it of course. But since you asked…please don’t stop blogging about mental health issues. Your take is unique and you are a constant inspiration for many of us. Yes, Furious Seasons remains and some others, but you and FS complement each other.

That said, add in whatever else you are interested in. Your take is unique and inspiring or fun whatever the topic. Maybe have sections? Book blog, mental health, politics, Philly, hamsters, daily life. Whatever you blog about is OK just so we continue to hear from you. If you had a book blog wouldn’t you sometimes want to blog about hamsters or mental health or such anyway? I think you have enough name recognition that you can set this up in a way that is fun for you and covers all your interests.

Apr 22 8:57 AM

Lynn Says:

First the obvious–you do what you need/want to do and we’ll deal with it of course. But since you asked…please don’t stop blogging about mental health issues. Your take is unique and you are a constant inspiration for many of us. Yes, Furious Seasons remains and some others, but you and FS complement each other.

That said, add in whatever else you are interested in. Maybe have sections? Book blog, mental health, politics, Philly, hamsters, daily life. Whatever you blog about is OK just so we continue to see your perspective on things. If you had a book blog wouldn’t you sometimes want to blog about hamsters or mental health or such anyway? I think you have enough name recognition that you can set this up in a way that is fun for you and covers all your interests.

Apr 22 12:48 PM

Ned Says:

Better keep this going, Liz! I am a loyal reader and you + The Frontal Cortex ( cover all the depression info I need. (I have manic-depression.)

Apr 24 9:49 AM

Joanne Says:

I love your blog and adore you. I hope you continue to cover mental health issues. That is what I read it for, that is what attracted me to it and that is what I have always expected from it. Why change it? It’s wonderful.

May 3 2:31 PM

slogger Says:

I just found your blog through the NYT article. I am a 67 year old with bipolar disorder, pretty well reconciled, with a young niece who’s not yet accepted hers. I just sent her an e-mail strongly urging her to explore your website. I would place my book love above everything in my life, and I wonder if you couldn’t combine the two subjects in some way? Thanks for what you do.

Contrary to every demographic, I support Obama too!

May 12 11:56 AM


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