This week we talk with LJ, who has been dealing with depression for most of his life, and describes it as a battle with a powerful enemy. He talks about the way that depression has affected his career, and vice versa, and describes the strategies he uses when he is well so that he is better prepared when his illness returns.
A conversation with Mary Allen Lindemann, co-founder of Portland’s Coffee By Design. We talk about the ways that one coffee shop worked to become a safe place for those with mental illness. Mary Allen talks about training staff to de-escalate challenging situations, and tells the story of what happened when a staff member became ill herself.
A conversation with Clare Miller, director of the American Psychiatric Association’s Partnership for Workplace Mental Health. She works with employers to help them do everything they can to identify and treat depression among their employees. We discuss how to reduce the stigma of depression, and the value of people coming forward with their own stories. Clare tells the story of how colleagues helped her to get treatment for her own depression, and how this has made her a more effective advocate for others with untreated mental health issues.
The PHQ-9 questionnaire mentioned in the show can be found here:
On this week’s show I talk with Lisa, who shares two dramatically different stories of telling co-workers about her depression. Her experiences highlight the contrast between a work culture that is supportive and one that stigmatizes, and all the consequences that has for the employee.
This week I talk with therapist and former orchestra conductor Susie Melnick about how depression has affected her work in both professions. We talk about the event that set off her first episode of major depression, one that she struggled with on and off for decades, and about the coping strategies that she used, until finally deciding she needed to change careers. We then discuss what it’s like to be a therapist while dealing with depression, and how her experience can be an asset when working with people who have the same illness.