Smoke Detectors: An Evolutionary Silver Lining Behind Anxiety

As many of you know, and experience regularly, the downsides of mental illness can be exhausting and extremely detrimental to well-being. Many of you have regularly experienced the impossible tasks of arising from bed on a dreary morning, having no escape from an overwhelmingly anxious situation, or containing a dangerous manic state. Obviously, these are not easy occurrences to handle or control. Obviously, mental health issues have plagued enough people where they are worthy of careful observation.


To gain more knowledge of mental health and its discrepancies, we must ask two questions- “How?” and “Why?”. When we look into modern psychological pathology, the former question seems to dominate the latter. Chemicals, and a lack thereof,  have been most abundantly accepted as the main reason why mental health issues physically exist. When we have an abundance or scarcity of certain chemicals in our system, we experience maladaptive mental symptoms. However, when we ignore the “Why?”, we avoid some of the most important information behind mental health.

Article dear hope Mental Illness

Dear Hope is Expanding Again, Meet Alaina!

I’m incredibly excited to say that we are bringing another person onto the Dear Hope team, Alaina Leary. Alaina attended the same college as Danny and I, and is now studying for her master’s degree in Publishing at Emerson College in Boston. She lives with her girlfriend and their two cats, and often writes about the experience of being a queer women and in a same-sex relationship.


Alaina is a rape survivor, and originally wrote a post for Dear Hope about that experience. It’s important to her to use writing not only as a tool for her own healing, but as a way to show others that they aren’t alone. She believes that giving a voice to these issues can also raise awareness about rape culture and consent, and she is a strong advocate for teaching informed, enthusiastic consent to the masses.

As an editor for several online and print publications, Alaina wants to contribute to Dear Hope by assisting with submissions, editing, and social media management. She assists with social media activity for several other magazines, including a literary magazine focused on mental health topics. She believes that the internet is a great platform where everyone can be heard and form a community. She will also be contributing articles, features and profiles, service pieces, personal essays, and creative writing.

I’ve had the privilege of working with her on multiple projects, and she most recently did an interview about me, the website, and my photography project for Germ Magazine (Seriously, check it out, her writing is incredible). I can’t wait to see how her networking skills and undeniable writing talents strengthen our community.

So give Alaina a warm welcome and be on the lookout for new posts signed AL.

You are loved.



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