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Family Mental Health Challenges: A conversation with my children

Welcome back to Consider Yourself Hugged! Click here to listen to today's Special Episode. OR click YouTube below to watch! (***Disclaimer: We provide these notes as a skeleton for the show - nothing fancy 😄)

So how did this episode come about? In August, I did a week long professional development for teachers out in Houston about mental health. When one of the teachers left, she said, “Hey, do you have any podcast episodes about the effects of our mental health as parents on our children?” I said no and then thought, Oh, that would be great. I asked my counselor. I said, “Hey, I think I'm going to do a podcast episode where I asked my kids how my mental health affected them growing up, what do you think?” And she said, “No!” What she meant was I was basically saying, “Hey, tell me what a terrible parent I was when you were growing up?” Then she had a couple of suggestions, which were really good. It was Jamie, who actually said, “Why don't we just talk about what it's like to be part of a family where we have all struggles?” So that’s what we did.

Incredibly, we had an AI bot called Otter join us, and it transcribed our entire conversation – quite accurately I must say. Below are the segments of our conversation. This will allow you to see what we chatted about. My hope and prayer on this World Mental Health Day is that this will inspire you. We all have a past. We all have struggles. I hope that you will seek help when you need it, forgive when you can, and be a part of creating a world in which mental health is no longer stigmatized.

Thank you for joining my family chat!

Highlights from our chat:

  • Family dynamics and personal stories

  • Mental health struggles in a family

  • Family history and mental health challenges

  • House burning down, mental health, and community support

  • Family trauma and mental health

  • Mental health and therapy experiences in the 90s and 2019

  • Anxiety, work-related stress, and mental health support

  • Personal growth and communication

  • Generational trauma and healing

  • Mental health and its impact on families

  • Memories of texting and blended family dynamics

  • Mental health challenges in a blended family

  • Childhood trauma and its impact on mental health

  • Communication and seeking help

  • Mental health, counseling, and personal stories

Mental Health Resources: National Alliance of Mental Illness

Thanks for joining today! As we’ve always asked in the past, please pass the show link along to your friends and subscribe, download, and review wherever you are listening. If you’re a woman and you haven’t joined our private FB group A Place for Women, please do that now! It’ll be your source of encouragement.

And until next time, Consider Yourself Hugged 😘🤗


The information in this show is not intended to be therapy or to address your individual situation. It is information based on my experiences, opinions, and research. If you need further help, please reach out to one of the resources mentioned in the show notes.

Michelle Kixmiller, MSN, MAE, RN, APN, PMHNP-BC Michelle Kixmiller is a Board Certified

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner and Licensed Educator. She works with children and adults with mental health needs including depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, ADHD, autism, schizophrenia, and obsessive compulsive disorder. Michelle served as a public school teacher and science department chair for over a decade when a family tragedy pulled her in a different direction. The death of her younger brother after a multiple year battle with depression and alcoholism led her to pursue a career in the mental health field. She went back to school to become a registered nurse graduating and gaining experience as a critical care nurse at a level 1 regional burn center prior to completing a graduate degree to become a mental health nurse practitioner. Her vision is holistic care through teamwork to create a more peaceful school environment for students and staff alike. No one should have to struggle alone. Michelle currently works full time for a non-profit community mental health center at an outpatient clinic and works PRN for an inpatient crisis stabilization unit. When not at work she loves spending time with family, traveling, watching movies (not scary ones), running (slowly), and Crossfit. Contact Michelle at Silver Lining Psychiatric Solutions, 615-378-7713 or

Grace Lichtenstein, MS

I am an award-winning international speaker/trainer, psychotherapist, coach, consultant, and a huge fan of all things nap-related. For over 25 years, I have been working with individuals and corporate teams to improve their health, become more productive, and reduce their stress. Through my training in both Western and Eastern wellness philosophies (including a BA in Psychology, an MS in Counseling Psychology, and certifications in addiction treatment), I truly have a comprehensive view of "what works". In addition, my diverse experience working with thousands of people in all 50 states and in 25 other countries (ranging from native New Yorkers to Native Alaskans and from the FBI to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops), has allowed me to pinpoint some of the universal characteristics of successful individuals and teams.

Through my signature online, on-demand coaching program or with one of my live training or speaking sessions, I provide the tools to help almost every individual and team reach their true potential: healthier, more productive, and less stressed.

Contact Gracey at

Tami West, PhD Stress and Mental Health Expert Dr. Tami West uses her entertaining and compelling style to shine a new light on how to transform your life and discover solutions to life’s challenges. Her passion stems from a lifelong battle with an anxiety disorder which has uniquely equipped her to teach, encourage, and motivate others.

Tami has worked in a variety of industries including healthcare, school nutrition, corporate sales, and 10 years as a public-school teacher. In 2013 she received her PhD in Human Development, studying the connections among stress, emotions, and identity. She is so passionate about removing the mental health stigma that she recently became a certified Mental Health First Aid instructor.

Dr. West has spoken in 48 states across the US, as well as the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand. In any given year, Tami speaks to groups with audiences consisting of anywhere from 100 to 3,000 people.

Her audiences are diverse and include Danbury Federal Prison inmates, teachers, administrative assistants, food service, and senior executives at Social Security Administration.

Dr. West is the author of several successful publications including two books: The Stress Club, Life Without the Monsters and Thrive. She is a mother of eight in a blended family and enjoys reading historical fiction, traveling with her husband Tim and family, and watching The Big Bang Theory.

Contact Tami at or follow her at Tami West Seminars.

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