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2 comments   |   Anger, Blog
Four way stop signs

Four way stop signs

Everyday on my way to work I arrive at a four way stop sign.  No traffic light, just an intersection at a busy road with four stop signs. I am always amazed at the unspoken rules that fluidly come into play.  All cars stop, and the one perceived to have arrived first gets to go.  […]

2 comments   |   Blog, Stress
Squirrel and Stress

Squirrel and Stress

As I was fueling myself for the day I saw out my window a squirrel already hard at work.  The rapid movement caught my attention, and I noticed the squirrel was deftly bouncing from branch to branch vertically up a pine tree.   In its mouth were held what appeared to be a random bunch of […]

1 comment   |   Anger, Blog
Love

Love

Unrequited love does hurt, as we all know from experience.  It has generated some of the most creative pieces of art and literature, or can devastate ones entire life, resulting in deep and ruminative anger.  With drugs and alcohol in particular, an insidious trap can occur.  Many people use substances to avoid feelings, getting an […]

6 comments   |   Anger, Blog
I Never Stopped Loving You

I Never Stopped Loving You

As a psychiatrist I am always interested in how my adolescent and teen patients say goodbye to their parents after being admitted into our residential programs.  Subsequent to their arrival, we will schedule a speakerphone conversation with their parent(s).  Some kids readily say I love you as they say their goodbyes.  Others do not. The same […]

1 comment   |   Blog, Substance Abuse
Much Appreciated

Much Appreciated

Mr. B. believed he had made billions of dollars creating an entertainment park in Saudi Arabia.  With the money he had bought the hospital where he now resided on the inpatient psychiatric unit.  He was very distressed that we had dismantled his stem-cell research lab in the hospital cafeteria, and routinely reported to me how […]

Comments   |   Blog, Imax
THE Imax APPROACH: PART 1

THE Imax APPROACH: PART 1

  Is addiction a disease? Do the kids I work with at CASTLE have a pathological response to drugs and alcohol? The disease model of addiction is compelling, and has served its purpose in bringing needed attention of healthcare professionals and legislators. My concern about the model is that it continues to stigmatize my patients, […]

Comments   |   Blog, Substance Abuse
Using Respect as a Key to Sobriety

Using Respect as a Key to Sobriety

Erich Engelhardt and I wrote earlier blogs on the adolescent brain. In this week’s offering we report some startling new data reflecting just how vulnerable this age group truly is to life-long addictions. At some point information like this, we hope, drives policy. A concerted campaign against smoking has resulted in a dramatic decrease in […]

Comments   |   Blog, Substance Abuse
Tiles by CASTLE Kids

Tiles by CASTLE Kids

Art is a powerful medium, one that resonates with kids. At CASTLE every kid is given the opportunity to create a tile before they leave the program. They can draw whatever they like, as long as it is not related to glorifying drugs. The tiles reflect the world of the kid, capturing forever this moment […]

2 comments   |   Anger, Blog
Changing the Face of Schizophrenia

Changing the Face of Schizophrenia

Flat and blunted affect. Clinicians use this term to describe a person whose face expresses little emotion. Their voice may be atonal, with minimal cadence, unlike the natural sing-song like expression we make in the simple act of talking with each other. But does this mean such a person does not have a range of […]

Comments   |   Blog, Substance Abuse
Family Table

Family Table

At CASTLE we take the teenage wish to feel pleasure, to take risks, and to be social, and parlay them into social connectedness and the pleasure that comes from feeling valued and respected by another person. One program that wonderfully illustrates this approach involves sharing the pleasure, risk, and social connectedness of cooking a meal. […]