Ambler Theater aims to end mental health stigma

Ambler Theater aims to end mental health stigma

AMBLER – Elise Seyfried says she hates buying, however 16 years in the past she discovered herself on the mall daily.

“I purchased 30 pairs of costly, high-heeled footwear in a single yr. I had no management over the impulse. I used to be smelling a blue streak. I virtually could not cease,” the Orlando-based freelance author, producer and mom of 5 says of her uncharacteristic conduct. “I did not know what was improper with me.”

In the future, whereas trying out a style journal, “I noticed a full-page advert for a bipolar drug” with a listing of signs, she stated. “I had all of it.

“My coronary heart sank. No person needs this. I knew I wanted assist.”

Seyfried was identified with bipolar dysfunction in April 2006. After six months, two therapists and a number of other remedy changes after that, she was feeling higher, she stated, and at the moment she feels “actually good.”

“I am fortunate I did not need to go to the hospital,” Seyfried stated. “Issues might have been so much worse.”

Seyfried, not too long ago retired — after 20 years — director of non secular formation at Christ Lutheran Church in Orlando, stated she has grow to be a “psychological well being advocate by my writing and talking.”

In 2018, she served as a co-producer and forged member on the Philadelphia-area premiere “This Is My Courageous,” a present that gives exhibits for individuals who dwell with or have family members dwelling with psychological well being challenges or substance use problems.

A volunteer with This Is My Courageous, a nonprofit group devoted to ending the stigma surrounding psychological sickness by storytelling, Seyfried is lead producer, with co-producers Jenny Smith, Lorraine Flynn, and Denita Stevens, on the group’s present on October 9 on the Ambler Theater.

No stranger to the stage, Seyfried and her husband Steve, each actors, based Household Levels to provide kids’s exhibits in 1980 and the Rehoboth Summer time Kids’s Theater two years later.

She stated the TIMB present was “a really highly effective expertise for everybody”. “When you expertise it and see what it could do to your life and others, you wish to hold it going.”

She stated the Ambler Theater present will characteristic 11 forged members “who inform their true tales of psychological sickness and restoration by private essays, songs, dance, poetry and comedy.”

“We attempt to be various,” Seyfried stated, noting that forged members embrace a real-life comic with Tourette’s syndrome, a wheelchair consumer with borderline character dysfunction, and Rachel Eve, a singer/pianist who will carry out an unique tune.

“Once I was youthful, I had social nervousness and music helped me come out of my shell,” stated Eve, a Philadelphia singer, songwriter, and psychotherapist who typically makes use of music remedy in her apply.

“I do not essentially play music with everybody. I’ve educated in different strategies as nicely,” stated Eve, who has an MA in Inventive Artwork Remedy and is a licensed skilled counselor.

“I’ve struggled with nervousness and melancholy since I used to be an adolescent, and I have been on remedy my complete life,” she stated. “There have been instances when nervousness was crippling, exhausting.

“I’ve a whole lot of coping abilities and thru progress and studying they’re nicely managed more often than not and never all the time current,” Eve stated.

She stated that one of many producers, Jenny Smith, invited her to audition for the present, after discovering her on-line.

“Music and decreasing psychological well being stigma are among the many biggest emotions I’ve,” Eve stated. “Though I’ve been doing this enterprise for a very long time, I believe [the show] It will likely be helpful to me.

She stated, “It makes you susceptible to being concerned in a extra public area, and it would cut back a few of my internal emotions about what I ought to or should not share as an individual in that space.”

Eve stated the present “we hope it will likely be an expertise the place individuals can really feel much less alone and provides them extra permission to speak about their struggles.” “Psychological well being challenges don’t discriminate. Listening to particular person tales has a private impression that talking about them typically doesn’t have.

“Therapeutic will not be a straight path; there are ups and downs,” she stated. “It’s one thing I dwell with and care about and prioritize caring for myself.”

Though she performs in a number of cowl bands — piano, voice, guitar and ukulele — in addition to folks music with a little bit of jazz together with her companion, “standing in entrance of individuals performing was by no means the main target,” she says.

“I used to be actually touched, impressed and impressed by what everybody has to share – the wonder that may come from traumatic experiences,” Eve stated on the present’s rehearsal. “It helps us join and know that we aren’t alone.

“I look ahead to seeing all of the totally different expressions.”

“This Is My Courageous,” which falls throughout Psychological Well being Consciousness Week, can be October 9, 5 p.m. at Ambler Theatre, 108 E. Butler Ave. Tickets, $20 every, can be found at Philadelphia.

Seyfried stated all after-expense proceeds can be given to the Montgomery County Suicide Prevention Activity Pressure.

Based on the Nationwide Alliance on Psychological Sickness, one in 5 adults in the USA suffers from a psychological sickness every year.

“There are nonetheless a whole lot of misunderstandings,” Seyfried stated. “Society typically doesn’t know how one can take care of individuals who have struggles.

“Throughout the pandemic, some who had by no means had psychological points earlier than, maybe for the primary time understood this. There’s sympathy,” she stated. “As issues get again to regular, I hope they’ll nonetheless perceive and never return to having so many unfavorable impressions of individuals with psychological sickness,” she stated. .”

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