The Thanksgiving Project: Family by Moriah Couch

Many moons ago, I (Tony) asked readers to submit brief devotions of what they were most thankful for. Life sent me many distractions that turned out to be blessings. One thing I am grateful for is I saved submissions and can publish them now. Like this one from Moriah Couch — There are many things in this life that I am grateful for, but the thing I am most grateful for is my family. My husband and my children. Growing up all I ever wanted was a family of my own someday. A caring spouse, beautiful children, and a home that overflows with love. Both my husband and myself come from broken homes and we vowed to never put our own children through that pain. I'm thankful God gave me a husband who felt the same way I did in that regard. I'm thankful for our relationship. For his love [...]

The Thanksgiving Project: Family by Moriah Couch2024-06-18T14:27:00-04:00

My Biggest Thanks is Grace by Ray Lehman

My biggest thanks is the Grace that God provides. This Grace can only be given as a gift and it is undeserving. If I were to be aware of the awesomeness of God but had no Grace that was available to me, I would go mad, or more mad than I already am, as I have been diagnosed with schizoaffective type bipolar disorder. Jesus provided a way where there was no way. God had showed us that blood must be shed for the forgiveness of our sins. All the way back to Cain and Abel and the sacrifices they provided to God. Jesus was the Lamb of God to be the final and ultimate sacrifice for the sins of those that would believe and receive His gift of ultimate redemption with the Father and indwelling of Their Spirit, the Holy Spirit. We see with Abraham and Isaac the story being [...]

My Biggest Thanks is Grace by Ray Lehman2024-06-18T14:27:00-04:00

Hope for Troubled Minds: An anthology of letters between those with brain illnesses and our loved ones.

Photo of a young Linda Rippee and Catherine Rippee-Hanson with their baby brother Mark. Mark developed a brain illness and died of undertreatment and the chronic effects of homelessness. I am dedicating this project to the Rippees, a testimony that even life-long devoted love isn't yet enough to conquer serious brain illness in this life. Yet. But his legacy lives on and promotes positive change that gives Hope for Troubled Minds.   Tony Roberts, author of When Despair Meets Delight: Cultivating Hope for Those Battling Mental Illness ; podcaster of Revealing Voices ; and administrator of the Facebook community group Hope for Troubled Minds is shepherding a project through his blog at delightindisorder.org we hope will culminate in a book with color photos entitled Hope for Troubled Minds: An anthology of letters between those with brain illnesses and our loved ones. Submit your letter written to your loved one (first [...]

Hope for Troubled Minds: An anthology of letters between those with brain illnesses and our loved ones.2024-06-18T14:27:25-04:00

Hope for Troubled Minds: A Tribute to James Mark Rippee from his “Twisted” Twin Sisters

As an American Curbside Caregiver and SMI/SBD Advocate Linda Rippee Privatte supports her disabled blind brother with a serious brain disorder who has gone untreated for 34 years.  Since then, he has been homeless for 14 years.  She is one of two twin sisters who advocates for change in the United States, also known as 'Twin Tag Team' and more recently as Twisted Sisters Advocacy & Activism for Serious Brain Disorders. They each do things the other cannot.  Her twin, Catherine, is skilled at social media awareness, advocacy, and education, but Linda is the last family member capable of reaching Mark on the streets and providing him with the necessities of life.   To my younger and only brother, Mark; I grew up believing that love could fix anything…that love conquers all. That love would carry us through any situation.  I believed that family never gives up on family.  I [...]

Hope for Troubled Minds: A Tribute to James Mark Rippee from his “Twisted” Twin Sisters2024-06-18T14:27:26-04:00

Hope for Troubled Minds: To Dearest Dad, most lovingly from Helen

Dearest Dad, It has been twenty years since you took your own life. I have only just begun to openly talk about your life and death. Why? Maybe it was because we didn’t celebrate your life with family and friends in early February, 2001. Maybe it was because I didn’t fully understand the extend of your mental illness. Maybe it was because you and Mom moved to Florida in 1972 and there wasn’t much visitation between the families. Thanks for being my father. I am blessed to call you “Dad” and want to tell the world about our life together. I remember living in our small house when I was very young. I was unaware that most six-years didn’t go to bed while the sun was still shining brightly. Mother would fix supper for Nancy and me. She would not eat with us but ate with you when you came [...]

Hope for Troubled Minds: To Dearest Dad, most lovingly from Helen2024-06-18T14:27:26-04:00

Hope for Troubled Minds: KyLee and her mother’s love.

When I was 17 years old, I delay enlisted into the Air Force. I had known at a very young age that I wanted a life devoted to the service of others. I was the oldest of four and already knew what sacrifice was or at least I thought I did. I enjoyed my time in the Air Force and short stint in law enforcement, but chose a different path because I felt I was too optimistic and in law enforcement you were always waiting for someone to make a mistake. Instead, I chose to go to college and work as a paralegal. Divorced young, I learned sacrifice as a parent. I was a single parent for 16 years. Sometimes I worked two jobs and went to college full time. I had aspirations of going to law school and making a real impact in the world. Then, two months shy [...]

Hope for Troubled Minds: KyLee and her mother’s love.2024-06-18T14:27:26-04:00

Finding Hope Through Chelsea: Hope for Troubled Minds

Some time ago I was blessed to come to know a young woman with a deep faith and a beautiful smile. We shared a common diagnosis in a support group and did our best to encourage one another. She was wise beyond her years and her compassion has lasted beyond her time on earth. Her legacy lives on through family and friends and those they encounter. This letter is from Tricia, her mom. Dear Chelsea, Gosh where do I begin? You were our “oops” baby, LOL! After 7 years of having a family of four, we thought our family was complete. God had a different plan though because, little did we know, it was far from complete. You came into our lives 5 weeks early, which scared us to death, but everything turned out fine, you were just in a hurry to meet your new family. You brought love and [...]

Finding Hope Through Chelsea: Hope for Troubled Minds2024-06-18T14:27:26-04:00

Hope for Troubled Minds: Ripples, Waves, and Heroic Measures

Diane has been a pioneer in sharing her story publicly to a wide variety of audiences including health professionals, students, city councils, church members peers and law enforcement since 2013. "In Sickness and in Mental Health" was one of a handful of biographies on bipolar disorder and is now on the top 100 Bipolar Books on BookAuthority.com. This is her letter to her husband and life partner Greg.     Lover, our life together has been like no other and we went through fires before we even met. We have had many challenges, yet so many victories and blessings along the way.  I thought that I finally had a grasp on our mental health conditions back in 2013 since it took me seven years of observing our recovery road to write our story In Sickness and in Mental Health: Living with and Loving Someone with Mental Illness. Since then, there [...]

Hope for Troubled Minds: Ripples, Waves, and Heroic Measures2024-06-18T14:27:26-04:00

Hope for Troubled Minds: Dear Bobby, from your grateful mom.

Dear Bobby, One of my greatest accomplishments in life was becoming your mother - I had hopes and dreams for the man you would become. Your intelligence, compassion and determination in everything you did brought me a great sense of pride. Bipolar disorder no doubt changed the way I see the world and what I now want for you, my loving son. This brain illness at times has made you say and do things uncharacteristic of the person that I know is deep inside of you.  It is an illness that has caused much turmoil for you, for this I am deeply sorry and only wish that as your mother I could take the pain away. Despite great suffering, despair and heartbreak, bipolar disorder has taught me so much. It has taught me that we live in a world where those with serious brain disorders are discriminated against.  We live [...]

Hope for Troubled Minds: Dear Bobby, from your grateful mom.2022-05-07T17:49:20-04:00

Hope for Troubled Minds: To my best friend, I call you mom

Jonna Terhune is a social worker living with a diagnosis of bipolar disorder. She writes, "... [my diagnosis] does not define me.  By the grace of God, I am still alive and blessed to have the support of my best friend/mother.  I know this letter cannot show the extent of sacrifice and love that my mother has given to help me live but I do hope that it gives a glimpse into our experience.  I pray that one day I can give back as well as pay it forward.  Thank you for spending a few moments to read my letter to my mom."   To my best friend, I call you mom, I never thought I would make it this far.  You stood by me through all the sleepless nights, not just as an infant but as a teenager and adult when mania engulfed me or depression strangled my heart [...]

Hope for Troubled Minds: To my best friend, I call you mom2022-04-13T14:32:55-04:00
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