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The Psych Central Show Podcast

The Psych Central Show

Hosted by Gabe Howard & Vincent M. Wales

The Psych Central Show is an award-winning, weekly podcast that approaches psychology and mental health in a casual and accessible fashion. Listen as our hosts speak candidly with experts to break down complex topics in simple and understandable ways.

The Psych Central Show is hosted by Associate Editor Gabe Howard and Vincent M. Wales. Learn more about them here.


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Episodes of the Psych Central Show

Addiction

Podcast: The Trauma of Living with Addicted Parents


 
When future NFL player Erik Coleman was eleven years old, he discovered that both of his parents were addicts (one to alcohol, one to harder drugs). This was a traumatic discovery, but made worse when, one day, he returned home from school to find his father had moved out. Erik shares this and more with us, including how this affected him as a child and as an adult, even through his years playing in the NFL. He shares his thoughts on what is most important for children of addicts to know, and of what happened to his parents later in life.


General

TPCS Podcast: The Paradoxes of Masculinity


Blue is for boys and pink is for girls, right? That depends on what generation you live in. Today, many people disregard such silly color assignments, or at least go for “gender neutral” colors. But a hundred years ago, all the top fashionistas insisted that pink was a masculine color and blue was feminine. Masculinity has long had an identity complex. How much “girly” stuff can a man enjoy without being viewed as non-masculine? Women have redefined femininity, so why can’t men redefine what it means to be masculine? Listen to this week’s episode and you might begin to understand.


Bipolar

TPCS Podcast: Living Well With Bipolar Disorder


Bipolar disorder is an often misunderstood (and misdiagnosed) disorder. Our guest this week is a psychotherapist who has worked with many individuals with this diagnosis. He discusses the nature of the disease, therapy plans for treatment, and the multi-phase stabilization process. He also talks about the “Grand Bargain” between the bipolar person and his/her family, which helps keep everyone informed. Most importantly, he makes it very clear that bipolar disorder is a very manageable disease that will not prevent someone from leading a stable, satisfying life, on one’s own terms, rather than the terms dictated by the disease.


General

TPCS Podcast: 100th Episode Extravaganza


Okay, “extravaganza” might be a bit of an exaggeration. But it really is the 100th episode of The Psych Central Show. As such, we thought it would be fun (and maybe a bit educational) to take a look back on The Psych Central Show, from its conception to the current day. Michelle Hammer, co-host of A Bipolar, a Schizophrenic, and a Podcast, joins the show as “host for a day” to ask Gabe and Vincent to share their perspectives on the show as its hosts and to answer some common questions. Listen in for some inside scoops and a lot of laughs.



General

TPCS Podcast: Mental Health in the Workplace


Most of us spend a large portion of our days at work, where we’re exposed to all sorts of different stressors that take a cumulative toll. And many of us are already dealing with some sort of mental health issue unrelated to our jobs. Put together, it can be a recipe for a breakdown, which is why it’s so important to address mental health in the workplace. Host Gabe Howard shares his insights on the subject, including his story of being fired from a job due to his mental illness, and the ensuing years of exploring the nature of mental health at our places of employment.


Bipolar

TPCS Podcast: What Is Postpartum Bipolar Disorder?


Most people are familiar with postpartum depression (a topic we’ve discussed more than once on this show) or even bipolar mania. Less well known is postpartum bipolar disorder, despite the fact that childbirth is a significant trigger of bipolar disorder. Our guest this week is a woman who developed this condition very soon after the birth of her second child. She shares her stories of hypergraphia (an overwhelming need to write or draw), how her husband dealt with the condition, the treatments she adhered to, and how she stays stable with the condition today. Listen in to learn more about this little-known condition.


Addiction

TPCS Podcast: Death in a Rehab Facility – One Woman’s Fight

For the millions of individuals with drug addictions, there are plenty of facilities out there for help. Some are public, some are private, but all have the goal of helping addicts to move on from drugs and live healthy lives again. Nothing in life is perfect, however, and sometimes things go awry at such facilities. Our guest, Mia St. John, is a 5-time World and International Boxing Champion. She's used to fighting. Listen as she tells the story of her son, who entered such a facility and never came out. She speaks of her own investigation of her son’s death, officially ruled a suicide, and the obstacles she encountered – and overcame – in her fight for the truth.



Men

TPCS Podcast: Mental Health Resilience in Gay Men


It’s no surprise that gay men have been one of the many groups subject to mental health issues. What is surprising, though, is how well they bounce back from such issues. Our guest this week has studied resilience in gay men and literally wrote the book on the subject. He shares with us some stories found in the book and behind-the-pages experiences from the writing of it. He stresses that the book is not just for the gay community, however, as many of the issues are fairly universal, including the anger we feel due to our experiences. Listen to hear more.


Children and Teens

Podcast: The Perpetual Trauma of Child Sexual Abuse (Isn’t What You Think)


Child sexual abuse is a deeply disturbing topic, made all the worse because of just how widespread it is. The vast majority of the victims of child sexual abuse know their abusers, all too commonly a family member. This week’s guest addresses some misconceptions of child sexual abuse, speaks on the survivors of incest, and the fact that much of the continual trauma suffered by these victims is due to keeping silent about the event. She also discusses the Four Rules of Sexual Consent and addresses the question of whether it is possible to have one’s abuser in one’s life and still be healthy.


General

Podcast: Using Nature to Improve Mental Health


We often hear about the healing qualities of nature. We’re told that connecting with nature is important, especially in this age where many people are tech connected during all waking hours. Sebastian Slovin believes this. In fact, he believes it so strongly that he became a developmental coach, now working with people to help them develop a stronger connection to nature, improve their well-being, and generally improve their lives. Listen in as he shares his story of why he chose this direction in life. He also speaks on how nature is important to mental health and why it’s so important for us.


Children and Teens

Podcast: Can Children Really Have PTSD?


When we think about post-traumatic stress disorder, our minds typically imagine war veterans or perhaps police officers and firefighters. Sometimes we’ll think of people who endured something horrible, such as a terrible accident, a home invasion, or other shocking events. But few of us picture children. Our guest on this episode witnessed a murder when she was quite young. She shares how this impacted her life, which included time spent in the Witness Protection Program. Listen to hear about the symptoms of PTSD in children, how to identify and avoid triggers, “restorative justice,” and about breaking the cycle of violence.


Children and Teens

Podcast: How Is Depression Expressed in Children and Adolescents?


The rate of depression in children and adolescents continues to grow, leaving many parents clueless on what to do. What is driving this increase? Are things truly different for young people today, compared to twenty or thirty years ago? This episode welcomes a child psychologist to address these issues and more, including: how and why kids today are overloaded with activities, the different ways depression expresses itself in youth versus adults, how to tell when kids are “just being kids” versus dealing with depression, how to recognize the various signs of depression in young people, and how parents can stop feeling like failures.


Criminal Justice

Podcast: My Mentally Ill Brother Murdered Our Parents


A mental illness diagnosis is not only hard on the individual, but the person’s entire family. This week’s guest shares the story of one of his brothers, whose behavior would ultimately be diagnosed as schizophrenia, but who went untreated for many years, coming into and going out of his family’s life for long stretches of time. This would come to an end only after his brother went behind bars for the murder of their parents. Listen in to hear the story, how it affected the family both before and after the tragedy, why his brother was unable to use a mental health defense, and how treatment could have prevented it all.


General

Podcast: The Stanford Prison Non-Experiment


For decades, students have been taught about the Stanford Prison Experiment, in which volunteers were assigned as either “prisoners” or “guards” in a mock prison. The “guards” in this scenario allegedly became abusive and controlling toward the “prisoners,” thus it was concluded that average people, given power and control, would turn to such negative behavior. But was this a legitimate experiment? New evidence reveals that there was a lot more going on behind the scenes than was originally reported. Listen as we discuss the origin of the experiment, the controversy surrounding it, and what (if anything) we can actually learn from it.


General

Podcast: Let’s Talk About Sex Therapy


Sex therapy. The very term is one that produces a flush of embarrassment in many people and is also prone to being misunderstood. But sex therapy is like most other psychotherapy, focusing on how to fix your issues. In this episode, our guest sex therapist talks about what his work consists of, dispelling a few of the misconceptions. He talks about the three main hallmarks of arousal, discusses common problems, such as erectile dysfunction and partners with extremely different libidos, and introduces practices such as “simmering” and “lazy sex.” He also offers some thoughts on polyamory, including the main factors leading to it failing.


Addiction

Podcast: A Mindful Approach to Overcoming Addiction


 
More than 20 million Americans have a substance use disorder. Addiction is powerful and can easily destroy lives. Many approaches exist to fight such disorders, including the familiar “twelve-step” methods, but none of them have tremendous success rates. Now, two counselors present a way to use mindfulness in the fight against addiction. They speak with our hosts, discussing the evidence that mindfulness works and how it can be used to treat addiction. They speak of their new book on this topic and explain how it can be used by the reader. They also talk about forgiveness as a powerful therapy tool, both forgiveness of oneself and of others.


General

Podcast: Fighting Your Fears with Kate Courageous



Fear is something we all face in our lives. For some of us (including some who don’t realize it), fear affects our behavior in profound ways, because we haven’t developed the courage to change this. Many people believe that courage is the same as fearlessness. In reality, courage is what allows us to do something in spite of the fear, whether it’s running into a burning building to save someone, touching someone’s pet snake to get over a phobia, or even just asking someone out on a date. Over time, we fall into habits, developing fear-based traits, such as pessimism. Our guest for this episode breaks it all down for us: what these traits are and how to change our behavior to reduce fear’s grip on us.



General

Podcast: What Does It Mean to be Transgender?

Gender transitioning has always been a topic that makes many people uncomfortable. And ever since Bruce became Caitlin, it’s been a frequent topic of conversation. Most of the discomfort comes from unfamiliarity, from presumptions, and (of course) from bigotry. In this episode, two transgender women explain what it means to be transgender, both generally and personally. They talk about their experiences going back more than twenty years. They discuss how transitioning, and the science of it, changed over the decades. And they offer their views on what they believe are the most important things for society to know about it.


General

Podcast: Don’t Just Survive PTSD – Thrive!


Nearly all adults in the U.S. have experienced a traumatic event in their lives. Up to 20% of these will go on to develop Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This is not a condition exclusive to veterans (although they do experience it at a higher rate than the general population). There are several methods used to address PTSD in therapy. Our guest this week presents a new type of treatment, one that promises to do more than just treat the symptoms, but get to the root of the problem. The goal is not to just survive PTSD, but to thrive in spite of it.


General

Podcast: Money Isn’t the Problem – Our Beliefs About It Are

Money is the root of all arguments… or might seem so, for many couples. But why is this the case? What is it about money that makes it such an issue? Kiné Corder is what you might call a “financial therapist,” a psychotherapist who specializes in financial issues her clients are struggling with. She explains the way our money beliefs are formed at a far younger age than one might think, why money is such a hot point in our relationships, our warped concept of “value,” and how to be more conscious about our relationships with and conversations about money.