panel discussion on mental health and blogging

northern voice blogging conference in vancouveryesterday i told you about coping digitally, a panel discussion about mental illness and social media that i’ll be part of at this year’s northern voice blogging conference here in vancouver this coming friday and saturday (february 20 and 21, 2009). it was airdrie’s idea to begin with; the other person who will participate is tod maffin.

tod maffin is a national CBC radio broadcaster and a busy international keynote speaker. in 2005 he suffered a debilitating depression and addiction and is working to recover through his writings online.

airdrie miller will be the moderator. she is a vancouver public school teacher,
blogger and podcaster who shares openly abut her own battle with unipolar depression. she is passionate about breaking the stigma of mental illness.

the conference is just about the best bang for anyone’s buck – high quality and fabulous food for a ridiculously low price – so it sold out in two days.  a full list of speakers and presentations is listed here.

i’ve already asked a few people what they think might be good topics to discuss at the panel. here are a few:

sandra from psych central made a few suggestions already, via twitter:

  • commenters/bloggers making “antipsychiatry” suggestions (“don’t take medication” or “you don’t need to see a professional”)
  • trolls on mental health blogs
  • online communities forming among people dealing with depression

blueberrio asked:

  • what problems has being out caused in personal and professional life?
  • blogging for enhance mental health, or blogging about mental health issues?

finally, a post from my blogging friend revellian:

i have a lot of blogging friends who suffer depression, ptsd, addiction recovery and a myriad of other problems-many far worse than anything i’ve ever been through. many have built their entire sites around depression and so forth. my question to them is how long must it go on? when you reach the point of truly getting over your problems and the healing is done, what happens next? some people may never find solace in their minds and struggle for the rest of their lives. i decided that will not be me. i will be free of this hell. i will be healed. there is only so much catharsis a person should have to experience before an apex occurs . . . right? there came a point where empathy of others and writing about my own problems made me feel like a cry baby . . . it’s a weird realization, but that’s what happened.

here’s my question to you:

blogging and mental health (and that includes addiction and eating disorders) – what would YOU like to see discussed at the panel?

northern voice collage by injenuity


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