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The Dark Place: Conversations About Mental Health | Depression | Anxiety Cover
The Dark Place: Conversations About Mental Health | Depression | Anxiety Profile

The Dark Place: Conversations About Mental Health | Depression | Anxiety

English, Personal health, 1 season, 40 episodes, 1 day, 18 hours, 47 minutes
A shame-free space where people talk about how they care for their mental and emotional health. Common topics include anxiety, depression, and mindfulness. No matter the story, it will be met with compassion. Engage with the show and host Joel Kutz online at Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are for informational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. We are not doctors. For questions about your own health, please consult a medical professional.
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#42: Todd & Vanessa Steinberg

Todd and Vanessa are the founders of Komuso Design, which sells jewelry engineered to help quiet the mind. They talk about how living a career-driven lifestyle led to stress, anxiety, and eventually a new life goal of spreading mindfulness and conscious living.
9/16/202038 minutes, 35 seconds
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#41: Camille Lowman

Camille Lowman is the founder of Yellow Project, a mental wellness subscription box. Topics include talking to kids about emotions, recovering from chronic pain, and getting in touch with your own self-care needs. Follow Camille: Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are for informational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. We are not doctors. For questions about your own health, please consult a medical professional.
9/3/202040 minutes, 35 seconds
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#40: Joanie Barton

The clinical therapist talks about recovering from the trauma and abuse of her childhood, healing herself through art, and practicing patience and gratitude.
8/5/202057 minutes, 2 seconds
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#39: Steve Austin

The writer, life coach, and former youth pastor talks about recovering from being the victim of childhood sexual abuse, his suicide attempt, and his experience with how mental illness is viewed within Christianity. Steve's website:
11/20/20171 hour, 5 minutes, 31 seconds
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#38: Kevin Hines (+ Listener Dark Places)

Kevin Hines is one of only 36 people to survive a suicide attempt by leaping off the Golden Gate Bridge. In the past 17 years, he has now become an advocate for those with mental illness. He talked with me about managing his bipolar disorder, how to ask for help, and his work preventing veteran suicides. Plus, Joel reads Listener Dark Places.   In this episode, Kevin talked about these resources: National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255 (+1 for active duty military and veterans) Crisis Text Line: Text CNQR to 741741   The Movember Foundation - "Unmute - Ask Him":    This episode is sponsored by Talkspace, an online therapy company that allows you to send messages with a licensed therapist via text, audio, or video. Visit and enter the promo code "DARK" to get $30 off youtr first month.
10/17/201733 minutes
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#37: Laura Thompson

The 23-year-old journalist from Austin, Texas talks about living with anxiety, the experience of having a panic attack, and why "it's better to cry outside than it is to cry inside."   Laura runs the newsletter Mental Health Day, which can be found at She is on twitter @laura__thomp (two underscores).   This episode is sponsored by Talkspace, an online therapy company that allows you to send messages with a licensed therapist via text, audio, or video. Visit and enter the promo code "DARK" to get $30 off your first month.
9/25/20171 hour, 9 minutes, 29 seconds
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#36: Being Brave with Jennifer Marshall

The co-founder of mental health storytelling organization This Is My Brave joins to talk about her experience with bipolar disorder, postpartum psychosis, hospitalization, and helping others share their own stories. In the episode, Jennifer mentions a guest-post on her blog about a friend who visited her in the hospital. Here is the link:    Twitter: @BipolarMomLife Website/Blog:  This Is My Brave: 
5/27/20171 hour, 25 minutes, 46 seconds
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#35: Jameson DeSantis

The 30-year-old talks about helping himself and others through depression and suicidal thoughts. Plus, he gives us a taste of what it would sound like if depression was an unwanted guest at a frat party.
4/10/20171 hour, 7 minutes, 32 seconds
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#34: Adam Grabowski Says It Anyway

January 1st, 2017: The 29-year-old comedian (America's Got Talent) talks about the loneliness of living life on the road, searching for connection in his life, and his mental health awareness campaign called "Say It Anyway." Adam Grabowski Website: YouTube: Twitter: Instagram: Facebook:   The Dark Place Website: Twitter:
1/2/201759 minutes, 8 seconds
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#33: Listener Dark Places

Joel is joined by Katie Habib to read listener-submitted stories for World Suicide Prevention Day. Topics include OCD, sexual abuse, and hospital visits.
9/10/201623 minutes, 55 seconds
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#32: "Roominating" with Ranjan Subbiah

Ranjan Subbiah is a 31-year-old living in Toronto. Topics include the ins and outs of medication, using comedy to frame mental illness, and explaining his condition to his family. Ranjan Subbiah Website: Twitter: The Dark Place Website: Twitter:
5/10/201657 minutes, 10 seconds
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#31: Institutional Compassion with Miranda Yaver

Miranda Yaver is a 29-year-old in academia. Topics include the recent loss of her friend to suicide, how her university has responded to her own mental illness, and the unrealistic standard of perfection put on people in prestigious careers. Miranda YaverWebsite: The Dark PlaceWebsite: http://darkplace.joelkutz.comTwitter:  
4/2/201652 minutes, 9 seconds
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#30: Dan Evans-Nakamura Is From The Internet

20-year-old Dan tells us his story. Topics include his contentious relationship with his father, feeling like a burden, and finding his agnosticism.   Dan on Twitter:   The Dark Place Website: Twitter:
3/18/20161 hour, 17 minutes, 51 seconds
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#29: Armando Flores Is Social Anxiety

Armando Flores, who goes by the stage name "Social Anxiety", is an alternative hip-hop and spoken word artist. He discusses living with paranoid schizophrenia and depression, and how he has used his music to create a larger discussion about mental health.This episode also includes the premiere of his new song, "Mary Todd Lincoln". Social Anxiety Bandcamp: Facebook: Twitter:   The Dark Place Website: Twitter:
3/1/201648 minutes, 39 seconds
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#27: Hannah Mansfield

Hannah Mansfield is Joel's guest. She's a teacher and recent college grad, trying to figure out the best way to manage a recent bipolar diagnosis. At the time of this conversation, she just had to go on medical leave from her job. Hannah writes a blog about her mental illness. You can follow it at
10/22/201550 minutes, 14 seconds
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#26: Amanda Rosenberg

October 8, 2015: Joel talks with Amanda Rosenberg. She's a comedy writer, and she reminds us how healing it is to laugh. (Yay suicide humor!) She also talks about feeling numb, being falsely diagnosed, wanting friends to just listen, and drawing pictures of the staff while in Stanford psychiatric hospital. We mention a few articles Amanda wrote for Medium. Here's one of them: It's also Mental Health Awareness Week. Though shouldn't that be every week?  
10/8/20151 hour, 16 minutes, 28 seconds
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#25: Michele Rosenthal

Michele Rosenthal was just 13 when she suffered from a rare allergic reaction that left her a full-body burn victim. For over two decades she suffered from PTSD symptoms before finally self-diagnosing her condition and getting help. She talks to me about the lows—self-blame, anorexia, recurring nightmares—then the high of recovery. Michele is the founder of Her new book is titled Heal Your PTSD: Dynamic Strategies That Work.
9/22/20151 hour, 1 minute, 42 seconds
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#24: Cara Santa Maria

Joel chats with 31-year-old Cara Santa Maria, host of the podcast "Talk Nerdy." In this episode, hear how Cara has fought through depression to build a career as a host and correspondent for networks including Al Jazeera America, Pivot, The Weather Channel, and Nat Geo. She helps us understand the chemical side of mental illness, then helps us understand how it's changed her own life.   Website: Twitter: @CaraSantaMaria
9/9/20151 hour, 25 minutes, 56 seconds
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#22: Jessie Duke

At just 20 years old, Jessie is a badass filmmaker turning her Crohn’s disease diagnosis into a platform for compassion. For this hour she lets herself be vulnerable. Topics include being chronically ill, feeling isolated, dealing with the emotions around sex, and medication that makes you forget an entire month of your life.   Jessie's short film: Kickstarter for Jessie's documentary:
8/10/20151 hour, 24 minutes, 59 seconds
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#21: Emily Wu Truong

Emily is a motivational speaker. Today, she takes a break from baring her deepest insecurities and fears in front of large crowds to bare her deepest insecurities and fears to us on the podcast. Yet she's not afraid—she's empowered. She talks about growing up and never fitting in, discovering a worldwide community of mental illness survivors, and learning to comfort her inner child. You can't see it, but she's wearing a lot of lime green.   More about Emily: Twitter:
7/27/20151 hour, 21 minutes, 18 seconds
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#20: Lucy Fisher

Joel talks with Lucy, who's 28 years old. Lucy talks about her flight anxiety, about how her dad would use drugs in front of her when she was 12, and then about her dad's death when she was in college. At some points, Joel feels like he's going to cry. Lucy does cry. Then they talk about how much they both love to cry. Lucy is a role model.
7/14/20151 hour, 10 minutes, 12 seconds
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#19: Tyler Austin

The 23-year-old talks about the panic attack that prompted him to lose 150 pounds, being by someone's side during their final moments, and the reason we go through life distracting ourselves.
7/6/20151 hour, 8 minutes, 6 seconds
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#18: Regrouping

A compilation of four previously-aired conversations, covering bullying, self-harm, death, and emerging from the dark place.
6/17/201527 minutes, 17 seconds
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#17: Cameron Louis

In an episode very relatable to those even without mental illness, the 24-year-old radio host and comedian shares his struggles with everyday life. These include self-doubt, trying to relax, and losing himself in a relationship, plus the anxiety-inducing path of seeking success in entertainment.   Listen to Joel guest on The Cameron Louis Show: Follow Cameron: @TheOnlyCamshaft
6/8/20151 hour, 16 minutes, 43 seconds
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#16: Listener Dark Places

Joel and Julia share personal stories submitted by listeners. To share your dark place, visit and click "Tell Your Story."
6/1/201520 minutes, 11 seconds
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#15: Chris Angel Murphy

The 27-year-old talks about identifying as transgender and genderqueer, the bullying and abuse they experienced growing up, feeling suicidal in foster care, and forgiving their father before his death.
5/26/20151 hour, 49 minutes, 21 seconds
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#14: Lizette

The 31-year-old tells her first-hand account of her brother's suicide 11 years ago, the unrelenting flashbacks she experienced, feeling suicidal herself, good and bad therapy, and how her current career helps to manage those feelings.
5/18/20151 hour, 35 minutes, 41 seconds
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#13: Teen Line (A Light Place)

Do you ever feel alone and wish you had someone who could provide a safe space and a listening ear? Chris Angel Murphy from Teen Line discusses the resource that allows teens to connect with trained peer listeners and get the help they need.
5/16/201523 minutes
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#12: Maddy

The 23-year-old talks about the back-to-back shocking deaths of two important people in her life, the depression that followed, and the impact the loss has had on her feelings about love, hope, and the future.
5/4/20151 hour, 44 minutes, 28 seconds
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#11: Grace

The 38-year-old discusses her lifelong emotional relationship with food, how she's been shaped by having an alcoholic father, and how she has redirected her depression and anxiety to help others. Guest co-host: Julia
4/15/20151 hour, 12 minutes, 42 seconds
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#10: Katie

The 21-year-old student talks about using success as a mask for her depression, admitting herself into psychiatric hold, and her recent experience of emerging from the darkness of suicidal thoughts.
4/7/20151 hour, 29 minutes, 2 seconds
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#9: Danny Lee

The 24-year-old talks about the dangers of his own perfectionism, the pattern of negative thinking that led to his suicide attempt, and how he now works to reduce the stigma around mental health through his organization Free Minds United.
3/23/20151 hour, 1 minute, 43 seconds
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#8: Harris Mayersohn

The 22-year-old comedian talks about struggling with body image as an in-shape male, feeling like he can't connect to others, reconciling a lack of meaning in the universe, and challenging audiences by talking about his depression.
3/16/201557 minutes, 48 seconds
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#7: Clarisse

The 23-year-old talks about her always-present underlying fear of her parents' death, going on anti-depressants when she wasn't depressed, and “that time in my formative years when a guy brought a gun to my Sunday school class.”
3/9/20151 hour, 26 minutes, 1 second
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#6: Julia

The 25-year-old talks about living with an addictive pattern of self-harm, realizing what happened to her as a child was sexual abuse, and getting to the point of being able to seek therapy. Plus, an email from listener "Boone."
2/23/20151 hour, 20 minutes, 20 seconds
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#5: Tasha Cerny

The 23-year-old aspiring writer talks about finding out her mom had cancer on September 11, 2001, what it’s like to explain anxiety to classmates in high school, and going from not being able to sleep over at friends houses to moving across the country.
2/16/20151 hour, 1 minute, 6 seconds
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#4: Rick Cisario

The 19-year-old comedian and USC screenwriting student talks about being bullied and socially isolated, how his past has influenced his anxiety and depression, and why everyone battling mental illness should seek treatment. Plus, why comedy is so important to him as self-expression.
2/9/20151 hour, 20 minutes, 33 seconds
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#3: Nic Mora

The 24-year-old producer and creator of the blog discusses being honest about her anxiety in the Persian Jewish community and how a career in entertainment can be harmful to mental health. Plus, she goes over things not to say to someone with anxiety.
2/2/201550 minutes, 25 seconds
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#2: Josh Woo

The 23-year-old radio producer and many-time game show contestant talks about the panic attacks that began when he believed he ate a toxic piece of blowfish, living with anxiety, and how to help support someone through a crisis.
1/26/20151 hour, 4 minutes, 56 seconds
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#1: Benji Ng

In the first episode of The Dark Place, the 22-year-old USC Fine Arts student talks about living with depression and suicidal thoughts, coming out as gay, finding the right therapist, and techniques that he uses to manage his mental health.
1/24/201551 minutes, 20 seconds