About Janine Monico

Janine Monico is a digital marketing consultant who has managed the Healthy Minds Philly initiative website since 2015.

Managing Teen Stressors and Anger

While adolescence can be an exciting time of growth, it can also be filled with social and mental health struggles. Teens face huge decisions about who they want to be and what they want to do in their lives, while also dealing with a storm of new emotions and experiences. They may rebel at the restrictions left over from childhood, while also feeling nervous about the new responsibilities they must take on. It’s a time filled with new freedoms but can also be a scary and uniquely stressful one. Given the complex developmental circumstances of adolescence, it should come as no surprise that many teens struggle with anger. Anger is an emotion we all feel, although we express it in different ways.  Anger can be a completely normal and understandable response to what teens are going through – but how do you know when it’s too much, or when it’s a sign of an underlying problem? And what can both teens and parents do when that anger rears its head? If you or your teen is struggling with constant irritability and anger, or anger that seems to come on with no apparent trigger, it could be a sign of mental health struggles such as anxiety, depression of a reaction of traumatic events.  If you have concerns about a teen, you [...]

2021-08-30T12:13:45-04:00August 4th, 2021|Family & Youth, Mental Health|

Coping with COVID-19 Vaccine Anxiety

The City of Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services (DBHIDS) has partnered with the Philadelphia Department of Public Health to address concerns about the COVID-19 vaccines.   In this webinar, the Health Department shares data and information about the development and safety of the vaccines; DBHIDS Chief Medical Officer Sosunmolu Shoyinka, M.D. provides tips to handle vaccine anxiety; and DBHIDS Certified Peer Specialist Nerrissa Mixon shares about her decision-making process to get the vaccine.  You are not alone if you’re feeling nervous about the new, urgently developed vaccines. Despite the data, safety precautions, and FDA regulations ensuring the safety of the vaccines, it is totally reasonable to have the “what-ifs” creep into our thoughts. What if they rushed the development? What if I have side effects that are extreme? These fears are rational and can contribute to COVID-related anxieties. It has been more than a year that we’ve all been living with the stress and anxiety of navigating through this global pandemic. Every decision we make requires an in-depth risk/benefit analysis and it is exhausting. Please join us to ease your concerns about the life-saving COVID-19 vaccines. And while you're thinking about the vaccine to protect your body, don't forget to think about how this past year of stress and anxiety has also affected your behavioral health with the new DBHIDS Boost [...]

2021-06-16T13:24:41-04:00June 16th, 2021|Pandemic|

We Breathe, We Live. Brothery Love Protest Stories

“We Breathe, We Live. Brotherly Love Protest Stories” is a made-for-television film presenting first person experiences of men who participated in the George Floyd protests in Philadelphia during the summer of 2020. Gabriel Bryant, Engaging Males of Color (EMOC) coordinator for the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services in Philadelphia, wrote a guest post on Generocity.org that highlighted his experience and the approach to the film. Here is an excerpt: We identified seven men of various backgrounds, ages and experiences to share their story, as we prepare for the one-year anniversary of this infamous murder and subsequent summer of protests. Where were they? How did they feel? What was it like to be on the ground in the marches? How has this trauma affected them and/or their loved ones? The director of the film, Glenn Holsten, brought a brave and innovative vision to catalyze and link the ideas presented in the film. These rich stories, plus the inclusion of spoken word poetry and conversations with our DBHIDS EMOC colleagues, give life to a moment that was a peak example of dehumanization. This film has further resonance since we find ourselves in Mental Health Awareness Month; additionally seen in the relief of millions now that Chauvin has been convicted of his charges. “We Breathe, We Live. Brotherly Love Protest [...]

2021-05-30T14:31:55-04:00May 24th, 2021|Community, Racial Equity|

Hope

by Margaret Pelleriti, DBHIDS Suicide Prevention Task Force What does it mean to have hope? Hope means a desire for things to change for the better, and to want that better situation very much. Hope carries us beyond the current hardship so that we may have a better future. In today’s world, it seems that hope can be hard to come by and this tends to be the case for anyone who has lost someone to suicide. My name is Margaret and several years ago, I lost my son Michael, then 16, to suicide. Prior to my loss, suicide never really affected me. To me, it was always other people who faced that tragedy. Not something that would affect myself or my family. When I lost my son to suicide, he was in the 11th grade and did not present any clear warning signs or clues. When he died, I genuinely believed that I would die also. There would be no way that I would be able to survive. I knew that I had to get up each day and do the same routine as before. I was still a wife to my husband and a mother to a 13-year-old daughter. It felt like family and friends expected me to return to some sort of normal. I had faith from [...]

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