In this episode, our hosts discuss whether or not mental illness is a real disorder or if it’s just something that medical and pharmaceutical companies made up to make a profit.


“Instead of taking my psychiatric medications this morning, should I have just gone to yoga?” – Michelle Hammer

Highlights from ‘Mental Illness Made Up’ Episode

[2:00] Is mental illness real?

[4:00] Yoga doesn’t cure all mental illnesses, just like it wouldn’t cure cancer.

[16:00] Dealing with people who think mental illness is not real.

[19:30] Eating disorders are such a stigmatized mental illness.

[20:00] Cigarettes used to be a health food (true story!).

[27:00] You can still live a great life with a mental illness.

Computer Generated Transcript for ‘Mental Illness Made Up’ Show

Editor’s Note: Please be mindful that this transcript has been computer generated and therefore may contain inaccuracies and grammar errors. Thank you.

Announcer: For reasons that utterly escape everyone involved, you’re listening to A Bipolar, a Schizophrenic, and a Podcast. Here are your hosts, Gabe Howard and Michelle Hammer.

Gabe: Welcome, everybody, to this week’s episode of A Bipolar, a Schizophrenic, and a Podcast. My name is Gabe and I live with bipolar disorder.

Michelle: Hi, I’m Michelle and I’m schizophrenic and I am so ready for this podcast right now. Gabe, are you so excited right now?

Gabe: I am so jazzed We finally delved into the mailbag and really found out what some of the questions that we get asked a lot. Ah, so like several people are going to hear the questions and be like, oh, they answered my question. But in actuality, like 100 people just ask us the same thing over and over again.

Michelle: That’s OK. Nothing’s wrong with that. A lot of people have the same kind of questions.

Gabe: It is true, but. I do this a lot. We do this a lot. We travel the country, we have the podcast, we write. And every time I go give a speech, I come home and my wife says to me, Hey, did you get any good questions? And then I launch into this, you know, 10, 15, 20, 30 minute spiel. And every time I see her slowly eating her food going, yeah, that’s great and exciting. And she just looks so bored. Just once, just once I would like to come back from one of these trips and she says, hey, did anybody ask any good questions? And I tell her the question that I was asked. And she puts down her silverware and says, Oh, my God, what did you say? All right, Lisa. We’re throwing it over to you.

Michelle: Our producer, Lisa, let us know these questions, Lisa. Let us know.

Lisa: One of the more interesting questions we got this week is: Can you guys do an entire podcast on how to deal with people who don’t even think mental illness is real?

Michelle: Gabe, is mental illness real?

Gabe: Yes.

Michelle: I thought so, too.

Gabe: All right.

Michelle: Well, that was easy.

Gabe: I mean, that was pretty awesome. I suppose we can delve into why people think that it’s not real.

Michelle: Why don’t people think that it’s real? Why do people think that yoga, essential oils and meditation will fix them?

Gabe: Don’t forget cannabis oil.

Michelle: And yes, CBD oil. Why do people think that’s better than psych meds? I that I don’t understand at all. I don’t I don’t I don’t get it. Why does yoga cure anxiety?

Gabe: Well, yoga might cure anxiety and that that little, little piece of the puzzle, I think is very, very important. See, here’s the problem. We refer to everything as mental health. So it doesn’t matter if you woke up in the morning feeling a little sad or if you woke up in the morning being flat out balls to the wall, schizophrenic, delusional, hallucinating. We would call those things both mental health and we would call those things both mental illness. But there’s a world of difference between waking up, feeling sad and waking up being delusional.

Michelle: Ok.

Gabe: But we talk about them using the exact same verbiage.

Michelle: Ok. So instead of taking my medicine this morning, should I have just gone to yoga class?

Gabe: For Michelle Hammer? No, absolutely not.

Michelle: Ok.

Gabe: Yoga and exercise and diet will have an impact on your overall health and it will impact your mental health. But it provides no cure and it can’t be used alone. And I really think this is the big distinction there. Nobody is telling you that yoga is bad. Nobody is telling you that eating healthy is a bad idea. Those things will improve your life. They just won’t treat schizophrenia or bipolar disorder or major depression in isolation. You need both things. But if you have to pick one. Don’t pick yoga.

Michelle: Agreed. Agreed. I always have my story about my summer where I was trying to get over anxiety, so I drew a lot of pictures. That’s what I did to help me when I was feeling very anxious and not on a lot of medicine. But that definitely was not a cure. It was just something I used to stabilize myself that summer. What would have been better would have been to be on meds, but that wasn’t my option at the time. I did what they did to help me then, but I wish I was on meds. Basically is the gist of that story.

Gabe: There’s lots of coping skills, coping skills are phenomenal. I think that yoga is an absolutely phenomenal coping skill for the right person. I mean, my 300 pound ass isn’t going to lay on the floor and stretch around. That’s not the kind of thing that I enjoy. But, for example, I play the drums.

Michelle: Wait, Gabe, Gabe, Gabe. I’ve got a great, great, great video. We have to make it. It’s called Gabe Goes to Yoga. That we have to do. I would love to see that happen. Gabe goes to yoga, just title it that. Coming soon, folks. Coming soon. Gabe, goes to yoga.

Gabe: I think we should call it like fat ginger does yoga. I mean, forget about mental health. Forget about Gabe. Forget about my own notoriety. Just fat ass does yoga.

Michelle: Fat ass does yoga that. OK, fine.

Gabe: Fat ass does yoga.

Michelle: Sure. Let’s do it.

Gabe: I’m not discounting the benefits of yoga, but let’s pretend for a moment that you have a loved one who is diagnosed with cancer. I mean, real scary, genuine, scary cancer. And they’re there under treatment for cancer. They’re doing the things that they’re supposed to. Whatever it is. And somebody walks up to you unsolicited and says, oh, your loved one has cancer. Have they tried yoga? It’s so incredibly dismissive. And it lets you know immediately that they don’t believe that cancer is real, that they don’t believe that cancer is a medical issue and that they don’t believe that you’re smart enough to care for yourself because they are just giving you this unsolicited medical advice about the magic of yoga. And when they do it with mental illness, that is what it really feels like. Listen, I don’t know if people are walking up to all the cancer patients and telling them to do yoga. I really, really honestly don’t. I don’t think that they are in the same numbers that they’re doing it for people with mental illness. But this tells me unequivocally that they do not believe that mental illness is real. They think that it’s some sort of personality quirk, that if we would just work harder, we could treat on our own. That’s so awful. It’s so awful. I can’t even be sick.

Michelle: Do you think that most people that don’t think that mental illness is real? Is it the family members or is it the person who is fighting the most?

Gabe: I think that if we’re being honest, it’s probably the family members because it, you know, being mentally ill creates bad behaviors. The symptoms look like bad behaviors. Let’s take me, for example. My ex-wife, 15 years ago, I cheated on her. And the reason that I cheated on her was because of mania, because of hyper sexuality and because of bipolar disorder. But when she hears that, she might mistakenly believe that. I’m saying that what I did to her was OK, it wasn’t OK. Bipolar disorder was the reason she was still hurt. I still hurt her. I owe her an apology, but I can see her hearing this. Oh, well, he’s saying that what he did was OK because he was mentally ill. He’s faking because she’s got to protect herself. She was a victim in that scenario. I broke her trust. What I did was wrong. The fact that I have a quote unquote, good reason doesn’t change those dynamics. But so often, I think that people with mental illness, people like, you know, us Michelle, we’re like, oh, we hurt you and we were sick. Well, that’s OK. We don’t have to apologize. And I think that further makes family members say they’re faking. They’re making excuses. I think that we need to make sure that both things are true. The reason for the behavior was because of mental illness and we were still wrong and owe you an apology and amends.

Michelle: Sometimes people don’t realize that people’s actions are because of mental illness. When my whole thing first started in 9th grade and I stopped doing homework, I started failing like English class. My mom had a whole meeting with my guidance counselor and my teacher and my mom was convinced that I had a learning disability. She thought it was a learning disability for years and years and behavioral problems and everything. And then once I get diagnosed with a mental illness, she goes, I never thought mental illness was even anything about it. I really always thought it was a learning disability and behavioral problems. I was completely shocked by this and I always shared the story about how I told my roommates I was schizophrenic and they were like, oh, that couldn’t have been more obvious. We already knew that. Yeah, we told you that. All of my best friends knew, but my mother was completely surprised. Did she not think mental illness from the very beginning? How could she not think?

Gabe: Of course not.

Michelle: How could she?

Gabe: Why would you think mental illness from the very beginning? Let’s think about what your mother would have had to think in order to think mental illness from the very beginning. My daughter, whom I love, who I birthed is crazy. And given her generation, she probably thinks that crazy people are the fault of mothers. So she would have to think that she was flawed. Learning disability fits a lot better. It’s a lot more common. So she thought to herself, I wonder if this is a learning disability. And then she only found data that supported learning disability.

Michelle: Yeah, I believe she thought I was autistic at some point, honestly. But, you know, I didn’t want to speak or anything because I was so paranoid that everything that I was going to say was bad. I was afraid to hand in essays in school because I thought the teachers were gonna think I was stupid. I was afraid to hand in homework because I didn’t want the teachers to think I was dumb. I was just so paranoid about everything. I didn’t want to talk at all. I was so just out of reality that she thought that I was not OK, but she’d never thought it was a mental illness. She always thought it was a learning disability, autism, all these other different things, but never thought, you know, maybe depression, bipolar, schizophrenia. She was just so surprised when I had schizophrenia. And guess what? So did my great grandmother. So does my father’s cousin. So, you know, it runs in the family. Yet she was flabbergasted when she found out that diagnosis. I think she didn’t want to accept that. That could have been a possibility.

Gabe: Because it’s a negative Michelle, it’s a negative. In order for a family member to accept that their family member is mentally ill. That rubs off for whatever reason, that rubs off. If your family member is crazy, then you’re crazy, too. It’s a moral judgment.

Michelle: Yeah, and she did blame herself for a long time after finding out the diagnosis. She said it was from. She was getting an amniocentesis when I was in the womb and that her three days of waiting so panicky about what the results were gonna be, must have messed me up while she was, you know, pregnant with me. But then years later, found out that couldn’t have messed up the whole pregnancy thing.

Gabe: Of course not.

Michelle: So she blamed herself for a long time. Yeah. All these things.

Gabe: And of course, she blames herself because parents, especially of the generation that our parents are in, they were raised to believe that mentally ill people come from bad parenting. That was their belief. And that’s a lot of deprogramming that we need to do in society. Believing that is straight up stigmatizing. Sometimes your family members will get illnesses the end and some of those illnesses will be mental in nature. The end. There is no cause and effect here. It’s potential, I suppose. I’m not trying to discount, you know, like things like post-traumatic stress disorder or generational trauma or people that come from really, really bad homes. But, you know, bipolar, schizophrenia, major depression, even anxiety. These are just part of our genetic makeup. And there’s treatments available, whether it be medication, whether it be therapy, whether it be coping skills. There’s a lot of data to support it. But again, back to the core question. Why don’t people believe it? Because it’s invisible. They can’t see it. There’s no definitive test. And if they accept it, they have to accept that there’s something wrong with them as well. And that last one that last one is so incredibly offensive because it’s completely untrue. It’s completely untrue. Your loved one being fucked up doesn’t mean that you did anything wrong.

Michelle: It must be because how could my friends all know and she have no idea. It must have been her denial of trying to accept that there was actually something mentally wrong with me.

Gabe: Of course, let’s take your friends for a moment. One, they’re younger, two, they had more mental health training. But the big one, you being schizophrenic said nothing about them. Nothing. Michelle Hammer could be schizophrenic and their lives didn’t change one iota. But your mother’s life would change dramatically. And she’d have to explain to people.

Michelle: That’s true. Yes. She would have to tell her friends.

Lisa: Was she just denying that you could be mentally ill? Or was she denying that mental illness could exist at all?

Michelle: Oh, my mom completely knows that mental illness is real. I think she was just kind of in denial at the moment because she didn’t think that I had that. She has pages and pages and pages of me and my behavior and things I’ve done and everything. If I ever go to a new therapist or doctor or anything, she gives them like a 10 page packet of my history of everything I’ve done. She believes it. She knows it’s real. Took her a long time to accept it and it took her a long time to tell people. So for a long time, it was I told them, what’s going on with you? I told them what’s going on with you. I told them what’s going on with you. It’s like, what do you mean? What’s going on with me? I am who I am. Why is it a secret to tell people? Not a secret for me.

Gabe: We’ll be right back after we hear from our sponsor.

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Michelle: And we’re back discussing whether mental illness is real.

Gabe: You know, Michelle, you’re looking back over. Of course, the course of your entire life. But specifically, when your mother first saw your behavior, she did not believe that it was mental illness. Now, later on, she did believe that it was mental illness and created pages and pages of documents and done all the things to get you help. But let’s go back to that moment in time, that small chunk of time where your mother did not believe that you Michelle Hammer had mental illness. So she did not believe that mental illness was real for you, but she did believe that it was real for other people. Does that matter? Does that make it worse? I kind of think it almost makes it worse. I think that I would rather somebody say, I don’t believe mental illness exists, period. Therefore, Gabe, you don’t have it. Rather than I completely believe that mental illness is real. But you, Gabe, are faking.

Michelle: She didn’t believe I was faking anything. She didn’t know what was going on. She brought me the therapist, but I just stone

Gabe: Yeah. Yeah. Stop defending your mom. Nobody gives a shit.

Michelle: Ok.

Gabe: We all love our mothers. Hugs, hugs, kiss, kiss, kiss. If they’re listening, you’re off the hook. Thanksgiving will be fine. The specific question is how does it feel when somebody looks you in the eyes and tells you that mental illness is not real and that you don’t have it? It’s not a thing. They don’t accuse you of faking it. They accuse you of being, I don’t know, brainwashed or stupid or who knows? They just do not believe that the thing that you have is real. How does that feel?

Michelle: Well, at the time, I didn’t know that I had a mental illness.

Gabe: Yeah, yeah. Michelle. I get it. You love your mom, your mom is a good mom. You’ve all learned; you’ve grown. There was a magical moment. It’s an after school special. I’m talking about today. Today. Right now, you. Thirty one year old Michelle Hammer, advocate, woman living with schizophrenia, person who is doing wonderful things in the world. You’re walking down the street. Somebody walks up to you and says, hey, you have schizophrenia? That’s not real. How do you feel?

Michelle: I feel like that person is a complete idiot and they know nothing about me and they know nothing about mental illness.

Gabe: I agree, I just think that person is stupid, but now pretend for a moment because this is where people are getting caught up. Pretend that that’s not a random person. Pretend that that’s somebody who has some control over your life. It’s a boss, it’s a hiring manager. It’s a principle at your school. It’s an admissions person. It’s somebody that you cannot just dismiss as an idiot. What do you do?

Michelle: Wow. I wouldn’t even know what to do, I would try to get a letter from my doctor. That’s really the only way to do it. Get a letter from a doctor, try to prove it’s real. Show a video that I have. I really don’t know what I would do other than try to provide as much proof as possible or I have to eliminate this person from my life and get out of that toxic situation.

Gabe: I like that you said that it’s a toxic situation because I agree people denying things are true when they are very true. It’s the cornerstone of our advocacy. We know that people believe that this is untrue. This is why we make videos. This is why we make podcasts. This is why we write blogs. Yet when people walk up to us and they’re like, what do you do when people think that this is fake? We look so confused. The answer is what we do is we make podcasts, we make videos, we make we write blogs. We advocate. We’re all over Facebook. We make little quotes on Instagram. We talk about it a lot because we want to change it. We want to change the way people see these illnesses. But yeah, that’s a really, really long thing to do. And not everybody can start a podcast.

Michelle: That’s true. Something like a joke that I say to people, if they think I’m not really schizophrenic, I say, well, just hang out with me all day when I’m off my meds. You want to do that? It’ll be proof enough. You’ll want to kill me by the end of the day. But you’ll believe I have schizophrenia then.

Gabe: Or will they? I got to tell you, I don’t think so. I think that there are some people that would assume that you’re not faking, but that you’re not controlling your behavior on purpose. For example, my father is a yeller. He yells all the time. He just he just he has a hair trigger temper. That’s not mental illness. My dad’s just kind of an asshole when he gets mad and he really needs to control his anger. He has anger issues, not mental illness. He just really needs to calm the fuck down. So if my dad said, hey, I can prove to you that I’m mentally ill, just hang out with me until I start yelling uncontrollably. I would not think that my dad had mental illness. I would think that my dad needs to, you know, take a deep breath before he talks to his wife and kids. Sorry, Dad, I love you. Just you see what I’m saying? They think that you can control it. They think that Gabe can control it. They think that we all can control it. And just inexplicably, we choose not to. Probably because we’re bad people.

Michelle: That’s true. You know what, illness gets almost the worst rap? It is eating disorders because people think just eat. You’ll be fine if you just eat. Just eat.

Gabe: Or just stop eating.

Michelle: Yeah.

Gabe: Go, go the other way, you know? Yeah. You just need to eat or you just need to stop eating because you know, that’s all you need to do. There’s no disorder component there. But yeah, that happens a lot.

Michelle: Yeah.

Gabe: Society does have a hard time understanding. You know, bulimia and anorexia, because you’re right, they just think, well, if the person would just eat more, they would be OK. And people equally have a hard time understanding binge eating disorder because they think that you just need to stop eating and that that’s the solution. But it’s so much more complicated than that. It’s the same way with mental illness. And just cheer up. Cheer up.

Michelle: Just cheer up.

Gabe: How many times do we hear that?

Michelle: Yeah.

Gabe: Just cheer up.

Michelle: Yeah. Just just, you know, put on some essential oils, breathe them in and you’ll be great. Just, you know, have some CBD. It’s so good for you that CBD. These days, they do everything with CBD. They can. It can just cure everything. Right, Gabe?

Gabe: You know that it’s incredibly helpful because you buy it at the gas station and it’s unregulated.

Michelle: Yeah.

Gabe: And the big pharmaceutical companies don’t want anything to do with it. That’s how you know that it’s so perfect and valuable, the fact that it’s sold at Speedway.

Michelle: Yeah. You can get it at any bodega in the city, totally CBD. You know what else you get at a bodega? Cigarettes, cigars, swishers.

Gabe: And interestingly enough, cigarettes were marketed as a treatment for lots of things. It was a health food when it came out. People were literally smoking. The thing that is killing people with lung cancer was marketed as a health food. When it first came out.

Michelle: That blew my mind.

Gabe: I know, isn’t that strange?

Michelle: That blew my mind because I did not know that.

Gabe: Yeah, straight up, true. They used to encourage pregnant women to smoke.

Lisa: You know that cigarette brand, Virginia Slims? Targeted to women. That’s why it’s called “slims,” because if you smoke you will lose weight.

Gabe: Yeah, that’s 100 percent true story. Thank you, Lisa, for popping in with that interesting fact.

Michelle: I’m going to start smoking. Virginia Slims then. Thanks, Lisa.

Gabe: It’s industry marketing and creating the idea in a lay person’s head that mental illness must be fake and just use this alternative medicine. And what’s so incredibly sad about that is all of these alternative things, they cost a lot of money. They’re not cheap. I am fascinated when people tell me, well, mental illness is fake and I’m not going to take medicine for it. So instead, I take these pills for it. But they’re supplements.

Michelle: Supplements which have no FDA warning or anything, and they’re not even.

Gabe: But forget about all that.

Michelle: Yeah.

Gabe: They’re literally taking pills to treat their non mental illness because taking pills to treat their mental illness is wrong and they’re spending the same amount of money, if not more, to do it. So the behavior is identical.

Michelle: Because there’s such a stigma. There’s just such a stigma on mental illness and they don’t want to go to therapy because they don’t want to be stigmatized by, oh, I go to therapy. They think it’s so rare and so taboo. Oh, no, oh, no. So many people go to therapy. There is no shame in going to therapy. Going to therapy is way more beneficial than a yoga class. For your mind, at least.

Gabe: And all of this, again, feeds the narrative that mental illness isn’t real, that it’s not real, that it’s all in your head, that if we make better choices, we can do better. And this is why the general public is so confused and it’s so sad because. Gabe and Michelle, we have real information about mental illness. We have ugly information. We have positive information. We have negative information. We have factual information. But we don’t have a billion dollar supplements industry pushing out our message. But they are pushing out the message that it’s all in your head. It’s all fake. Take this magical alternative treatment. And when you say why do people think that this is not real? Why do people think that it’s fake? I think that this is one of the reasons. And I think that people upon hearing that people think that mental illness isn’t real, need to say stop listening to your corporate overlord Masters, because that’s what’s happening. They’re believing marketing. They are believing marketing over their sick loved ones who have real symptoms and are seeing real doctors because they saw something on the Internet.

Michelle: Then just go on Web M.D. and find out some nonsense and they’ll spend tons of money on supplements. But no, I’m not going to go through and actually take an actual pharmaceutical from an actual company. But I’ll just go to wherever

Gabe: Prescribed by an actual doctor.

Michelle: Yeah. Yeah.

Gabe: Don’t forget all of that. That’s the other thing that just really frustrates me so much. They hate big pharma, but they’re OK with big supplement. People, they’re both billion dollar industries. One is addressing an actual problem with oversight and one is ignoring all responsibility and creating a false narrative. But this is why your loved ones don’t understand that mental illness is real, because your individual message can’t break through. All of the misinformation and the misinformation is so much. From your mom, Michelle, thinking that she’s a bad mother, to people not hearing about mental health or being taught mental health in school, but they are taught about learning disabilities, to people not openly discussing mental illness. I mean, how many shows are there like ours? There’s not that many. Now, how many shows are there arguing over whether the last Avengers movie was good? Literally thousands. Literally thousands probably.

Michelle: Note I did not see that movie.

Gabe: Tens of thousands.

Michelle: I did not see that movie, don’t ask me about that movie. I know nothing about that movie. I’m sure it was great. Good. Yeah, you go girl.

Gabe: You’re the one. You’re the only one in America that hasn’t seen it.

Michelle: Sorry.

Gabe: But even though you haven’t seen it, do you think The Avengers movie is real?

Michelle: Yes.

Gabe: See, you’re doing better than the people outright denying mental illness. And that is that is so incredibly frustrating. But I think that we need to understand why people think that it’s not real and why people are fighting against it. And I think what we as people living with mental illness need to do is talk about it more. The bottom line is we need more people like Gabe and Michelle. We need more people like the people who write us letters. We need more people like the people on social media who say, I have major depression, I have schizophrenia, I have bipolar disorder, I have anxiety, because eventually it will break through that this is real, it is treatable and people live great lives in spite of it. But right now, it’s just a bunch of nonsense that confuses people. So to sum this up for our listeners as they answer the basic question of what do you do when people don’t believe mental illness is real? Michelle, do you think that you can change somebody’s mind when they are one on one with information?

Michelle: One on one with information? You might be able to change somebodies mind, but it’s really not going to be an easy thing to do. I think.

Gabe: But you think it’s worth it?

Michelle: It is worth it. People need to know that mental illness is definitely real. You can’t just live in a world of yoga supplements and CBD. It’s a great idea to share your journey, bad, good, an ugly with mental illness. Us sharing our journey can only help others. It’s not easy to say you need therapy. It’s not easy to say you might need medication. But the two of us talking about it so openly can only help people feel better about themselves and maybe start that journey for themselves.

Gabe: Do you think it’s empowering for other people to share their successes in spite of living with mental illness?

Michelle: Yeah, you should definitely share your success despite mental illness. Mental illness shouldn’t be bringing you down all the time. You can still have a great successful life with it as long as it’s managed well. You know, I do well. Gabe, you do well. We’re living a great life despite our mental illnesses. So sharing that with other people just shows that they can live a great life as well.

Gabe: I’ve always said that crisis in mental illness is so public. But when good things happen, it’s never credited.

Michelle: That’s something I always say, I always say when you turn on the 11:00 news, you’re going to hear about something about somebody that’s mentally ill and they were running around with a knife and running out of the gun, they got arrested and brought to jail. But you never hear on the 11:00 o’clock news. This person with schizophrenia woke up in the morning, had some coffee, went to work, met friends after work, went home, had dinner, went to sleep, had a good day. You never hear that. You only hear the bad things. So if you only hear the bad things, you’re going to stigmatize the entire group of people. So if we could just share our stories like what we’re doing and showing that you can live a good life, you’re only going to hear more positive stories. And that’s what we’re doing and that’s what we want other people to do to share a story of living well with a mental illness. And I think that’s exactly what we need to do, what everyone needs to do and what society needs to do.

Gabe: Michelle. I could not agree more. Listen, if you have a great positive, awesome story about living well, despite your mental illness, please hit up Over the coming weeks, we’ll be featuring people on our show. That’s right. Do you want to be a guest on a bipolar schizophrenic and a podcast and share your story with hundreds of thousands worldwide? All you have to do is hit up and tell us about it. Don’t forget to subscribe to our podcast on your favorite podcast player. Share us on social media. Give us as many stars as humanly possible. And hey, use your words. Tell us why you love us. And listen, if you are not telling a friend about our show, then clearly you’re not telling a friend about our show. Michelle and I would consider it a personal favor if you did so. And we will see everybody next week.

Announcer: You’ve been listening to A Bipolar, a Schizophrenic, and a Podcast. If you love this episode, don’t keep it to yourself head over to iTunes or your preferred podcast app to subscribe, rate, and review. To work with Gabe, go to To work with Michelle, go to Schizophrenic.NYC. For free mental health resources and online support groups, head over to This show’s official web site is You can e-mail us at Thank you for listening, and share widely.

Meet Your Bipolar and Schizophrenic Hosts

GABE HOWARD was formally diagnosed with bipolar and anxiety disorders after being committed to a psychiatric hospital in 2003. Now in recovery, Gabe is a prominent mental health activist and host of the award-winning Psych Central Show podcast. He is also an award-winning writer and speaker, traveling nationally to share the humorous, yet educational, story of his bipolar life. To work with Gabe, visit

MICHELLE HAMMER was officially diagnosed with schizophrenia at age 22, but incorrectly diagnosed with bipolar disorder at 18. Michelle is an award-winning mental health advocate who has been featured in press all over the world. In May 2015, Michelle founded the company Schizophrenic.NYC, a mental health clothing line, with the mission of reducing stigma by starting conversations about mental health. She is a firm believer that confidence can get you anywhere. To work with Michelle, visit Schizophrenic.NYC.