Welcome to our CVI Newsletter! We hope to use this as another way to engage with you!
Please know you can reach out to us through our warmline at 410-822-1601 during our open hours. Our Peer Support Specialists are here for you to connect, share your thoughts and struggles with someone who will listen and who cares.
Have something you would like to see included next month? Would you like to include your own story of your recovery journey? Let us know by reaching out to our Program Coordinator, Avra Sullivan at email@example.com or call 410-822-1601
Join our Online group!
We currently offer one online support group to connect with others! Click below to be taken directly to the group. All are welcome and you may join by computer or phone.
A peer led group with topics pertaining to depressing and anxiety. A safe place to share your feelings, struggles and success with others
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) was launched nationwide in October 1987 as a way to connect and unite individuals and organizations working on domestic violence issues and to raise awareness. Over the past 30+ years, much progress has been made to support domestic violence victims and survivors, to hold abusers accountable and to create and update legislation to further those goals.
According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, “Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, threats, economic, and emotional/psychological abuse. The frequency and severity of domestic violence varies dramatically.”
Did you know?
In the United States, more than 10 million adults experience domestic violence annually. If each of these adults experienced only one incidence of violence, an adult in the US would experience violence every three seconds. However, because domestic violence is a pattern, many experience repeated acts of abuse annually, so an incident of abuse happens far more frequently than every three seconds.
1 in 4 women and 1 in 10 men experience sexual violence, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner during their lifetime with ‘IPV (Intimate Partner Violence) related impact’ such as being concerned for their safety, PTSD symptoms, injury, or needing victim services.
Approximately 1 in 5 female victims and 1 in 20 male victims need medical care. Female victims sustain injuries 3x more often than male victims. 23.2% of women and 13.9% of men have experienced severe physical violence by an intimate partner during their lifetime.
On a typical day, domestic violence hotlines nationwide receive over 19,000 calls. In 2018, partner violence accounted for 20% of all violent crime. Domestic violence is prevalent in every community, and affects all people regardless of age, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, gender, race, religion, or nationality. Physical violence is often accompanied by emotionally abusive and controlling behavior as part of a much larger, systematic pattern of dominance and control. Domestic violence can result in physical injury, psychological trauma, and even death. The devastating consequences of domestic violence can cross generations and last a lifetime.
If you or a loved one are experiencing domestic abuse of any kind, please reach out! Below are some local resources that can help!
The above quote is from Shakespeare's play Macbeth. Lady Macbeth is chastising her husband, for a sudden loss of resolve. She uses an "adage" (a proverb or short statement expressing a general truth) about a cat who very much wanted to catch a fish, but didn't want to get his feet wet.
In essence, Lady M is saying, that sometimes, in order to get that which we most desire, we may have to do things that aren't fun or easy. That may feel unpleasant or even loathsome at the time, but will bring about a great reward.
This idea can be seen in different ways. For instance, we may need to do things that aren't always particularly fun, like exercising, watching our food choices, or taking medications in order to maintain our health. Perhaps we are in a toxic relationship that we need to leave, or we may have to set boundaries and rules in order to help preserve our own wellness. Sometimes taking a hard look at our own actions or, reactions, and finding healthier ways to cope with problems in our lives can be a hard endeavor, but often reaps more benefits than self destructive behaviors. These are not easy tasks, but in the end, the results of a healthier body, a healthier mind and a healthier spirit can be well worth the effort.
While Lady M might have some wisdom here, I wouldn't generally recommend taking too much advice from her. It didn't quite turn out so well for her or her somewhat indecisive hubby, but for more on that, you'll have to read the play!
All Creatures Great and Small
Granger visits CVI during our Animal Hour , Mondays at 3pm. Each week is a different animal.
Animals have long been known to have incredible benefits to humans. Their ability to sense sadness, anxiety, and to instinctively give comfort and unbiased and non judgmental love has proven incredibly helpful. Animals are now used in various ways including Animal Assisted Therapy, Emotional Support Animals and Service animals. They are even able to help detect somatic diseases such as diabetes (they can recognize signs of diabetic shock) and Parkinson disease. Here are some interesting facts on how animals are used to help individuals with both physical and mental health challenges.
Dogs have an undeniable bond with humans. There’s a reason they are often deployed in the aftermath of natural or human-made disasters.
Horses naturally observe and respond to nonverbal cues. That’s why they’re great at reflecting people's emotional and behavioral states.
In 2016, the American Counseling Association created Animal Assisted Therapy Competencies for professional counselors, focused on the knowledge and skills necessary for effective AAT.
Animal Assisted Therapy animals are trained for the counseling environments and situations in which they work. They often live with the counselors who work them, which can strengthen their bond and help in communication during their counseling sessions.
A service animal is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability. Service animals are the only animals that must be permitted in businesses and other facilities that serve the public.
Emotional support animals play valuable roles, too, although they may not necessarily be trained to perform tasks for a person with a disability.
Sigmund Freud included his Chow Chow, Jofi, in his counseling sessions in the 1930s. In addition to assessing the mood of patients, Jofi knew exactly when 50 minutes had passed and it was time to end a session.
In the 1960s, ATT pioneer Dr. Boris Levinson documented his experiences with his “co-therapist” Jingles, a dog that helped even seriously withdrawn young people make significant progress.
What Is Gaslighting?
Gaslighting is a form of manipulation that occurs in abusive relationships. It is an insidious and sometimes covert type of emotional abuse where the bully or abuser makes the target question their judgments and reality. Ultimately, the victim of gaslighting starts to wonder if they are losing their sanity.
Gaslightingis a technique that undermines your entire perception of reality. When someone is gaslighting you, you often second-guess yourself, your memories, and your perceptions and are oftenleft feeling dazed and wondering if there is something wrong with you.
Here's a closer look at the tactics used when a person is gaslighting someone...
Lying to You
People who engage in gaslighting are habitual and pathological liars. They will blatantly lie to your face and never back down or change their stories, even when you call them out or provide proof of their deception.
They may say something like: "You're making things up. That never happened." Even when you know they are lying, they can be very convincing. In the end, you start to second-guess yourself.
Minimizing Your Thoughts and Feelings
Trivializing your emotions allows the gaslighter to gain power over you. They might make statements like: "Calm down," "You're overreacting," or "Why are you so sensitive?" All of these statements minimize how you're feeling or what you're thinking and communicate that you're wrong.
Blame-shifting is another common tactic of gaslighters. Every discussion you have is somehow twisted to where you are to blame for something that occurred. Even when you try to discuss how their behavior makes you feel, they're able to twist the conversation so that you end up believing that you are the cause of their bad behavior.
Bullies and abusers are notorious for denying that they did anything wrong. They do this to avoid taking responsibility for their poor choices.
This can leave the victim of gaslighting feeling unseen, unheard, and is the impact on them is of no importance.
Using Compassionate Words As Weapons
Sometimes when called out or questioned, a gaslighter will use kind and loving words to try to smooth over the situation. They might say something like, "You know how much I love you. I would never hurt you on purpose." These words are what you want to hear, but they are inauthentic, especially if the same behavior is repeated.
A gaslighter may constantly retell stories in a way that's in their favor.
For instance, if your partner shoved you against the wall and you are discussing it later, they may twist the story and say you stumbled and they tried to steady you, which is what caused you to fall into the wall.
You may begin to doubt your memory of what happened. This confusion or second-guessing on your part is exactly the intention.
Gaslighting Signs to Look For
Being subjected to gaslighting can cause anxiety, depression, and other mental health concerns including addiction and thoughts of suicide.
For this reason, it is important to recognize when you're experiencing gaslighting. Ask yourself if any of the following statements ring true:
You doubt your feelings and reality: You try to convince yourself that the treatment you receive is not that bad or that you are too sensitive.
You question your judgment and perceptions: You are afraid of speaking up or express your emotions. You have learned that sharing your opinion usually makes you feel worse in the end, so you stay silent instead.
You feel vulnerable and insecure: You often feel like you “walk on eggshells” around your partner/friend/family member.
You feel alone and powerless: You are convinced that everyone around you thinks you are "strange," "crazy," or "unstable," just like the gaslighter says you are. This makes you feel trapped and isolated.
You wonder if you are what they say you are: The gaslighter's words make you feel like you are wrong, unintelligent, inadequate, or insane. Sometimes you even find yourself repeating these statements to yourself.
You feel confused: The gaslighter's behavior confuses you, almost as if they are Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
You worry that you are too sensitive: The person minimizes hurtful behaviors or words by saying “I was just joking" or "you need thicker skin."
You have a sense of impending doom: You feel like something terrible is about to happen when you are around this person. This may include feeling threatened and on edge without knowing why.
You spend a lot of time apologizing: You feel the need to apologize all the time for what you do or who you are.
You second-guess yourself: You frequently wonder if you accurately remember the details of past events. You may have even stopped trying to share what you remember for fear that it is wrong.
You assume others are disappointed in you: You apologize all the time for what you do or who you are, assuming people are let down by you or that you have somehow made a mistake.
You struggle to make decisions because you distrust yourself: You would rather allow your partner/friend/family member to make decisions for you, or avoid decision-making altogether.
If you identify with any of these signs of gaslighting, it's important that you seek professional help right away. Left unaddressed, gaslighting can take a significant toll on your self-esteem and overall mental health.
Your doctor can recommend a counselor who is equipped to help you process and deal with what is happening to you.
The People's Roundtable
The People's Roundtable creates a connection between consumers and service providers so consumers know what services are available and service providers know what the consumers' needs are.
Held on the second Tuesday of every month from 3-4pm