Adversity and Mental Health

HealthyPlace Mental Health Newsletter

Here's what's happening on the HealthyPlace site this week:

"That Which Does Not Kill Us Makes Us Stronger"

It's a quote from German philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche. It came to mind when I heard Japan's Prime Minister speaking of the calamity unfolding in his country; reflecting that "if the nation works together, we shall overcome."

But does adversity always make us stronger? The answer is "no". Research has shown that each person has their own individual level of tolerance when it comes to adversity. And, in this instance, age does make a difference.

Young children who face high levels of stress are prone to depression, anxiety, and personality disorders as they grow up.

On the flip side, a study in the October 2010 Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, found that people who had experienced a few adverse events in their lives reported better mental health and well-being than people with a history of frequent adversity and people with no history of misfortune.

When it comes to resiliency, the researchers found age, personality characteristics and social support systems had no measurable impact on the relationship between adversity and mental health.

According to the research, people with 2-4 adverse events in their lives cope better than those who have no experience with adversity.

At the same time, higher levels of adversity, the study found, can overtax coping skills and support networks, creating feelings of hopelessness and loss of control, disrupting the development of toughness and taking a toll on mental health and well-being. Under those circumstances, the researchers note, even the most minor hassles can seem overwhelming.


Mental Health Experiences

Share your thoughts/experiences on facing adversity or any mental health subject, or respond to other people's audio posts, by calling our toll-free number (1-888-883-8045).

You can listen to what other people are saying by clicking on the gray title bars inside the widgets located on the "Sharing Your Mental Health Experiences" homepage, the HealthyPlace homepage, and the HealthyPlace Support Network homepage.

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If you have any questions, write us at: info AT


Your Thoughts: From the HealthyPlace Forums and Chat

On our Bipolar forum, Storkette says "Has anyone figured out their triggers into mania? What are they? The optimal is normal moods but I prefer mania over depression. Has anyone noticed or tried to bring the other on?" Sign into the forums and share your thoughts and comments.

Join us on the HealthyPlace Mental Health Forums and Chat

You must be a registered HealthyPlace member. If you aren't already, it's free and takes less than 30 seconds. Just click the "register button" at the top of the page.

At the bottom of the forums page, you'll notice a chat bar (similar to facebook). You can chat with any registered member on the forums site.

We hope you'll be a frequent participant and share our support link with others who may benefit.

"Difficulty of Changing Society's View of Female Body Image" on HealthyPlace TV

The Endangered Species Summit is a big conference with a big goal - changing the way the media portrays a woman's body. Our guest, Carol Bloom, MSW, LCSW is helping organize the conference and she discusses the importance of having realistic images of girls, boys, women and men and how it affects our own body image. That's on this week's HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show. (TV Show blog)

Still to Come in March on the HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show

  • Depression and Bipolar Treatments
  • The Challenges of Parenting an Autistic Child

If you would like to be a guest on the show or share your personal story in writing or via video, please write us at: producer AT

For all previous HealthyPlace Mental Health TV archived shows.

"I'm Living Proof of Full Recovery From an Eating Disorder" on HealthyPlace Radio

At 28, Andrea Roe says she's finally healthy again. For 10 years, Andrea struggled with depression and body image issues and spent 6 years battling anorexia and bulimia. "There is so much negativity out there and it is important to let people know that there is HOPE and that eating disorders can be overcome." That's on this week's HealthyPlace Mental Health Radio Show.

From HealthyPlace Mental Health Blogs

Your comments and observations are welcomed.

Feel free to share your thoughts and comments at the bottom of any blog post. And visit the mental health blogs homepage for the latest posts.

If you know of anyone who can benefit from this newsletter or the site, I hope you'll pass this onto them. You can also share the newsletter on any social network (like facebook, stumbleupon, or digg) you belong to by clicking the links below. For updates throughout the week,

back to: Mental-Health Newsletter Index

APA Reference
Staff, H. (2011, March 18). Adversity and Mental Health, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, July 18 from

Last Updated: September 4, 2014

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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