Friday, 3 February 2012

Does mood sharing make a difference?

One of Moodscope’s aspects allows you to nominate others who can act as your ‘buddies’, receiving automatic notifications of your mood scores every time you record them. They can also view your Moodscope graph.

If you’ve already appointed one or more buddies, we’d be interested in knowing more about your experience. We’d like to hear from you no matter what your results have been.

Did anything happen when you began scoring? Did it lead to your scores changing? Perhaps they went up, or maybe they went down. Or possibly they didn't change at all?

It’s conceivable that you may have some thoughts about why a change did or didn’t occur, and we’d love to hear more about this too.

Professor Seth Roberts is one of the world’s leading experts in self-experimentation, and he and Moodscope are keen to find out more about what happens when people share Moodscope scores with others - whether it ‘works’ or not.

In the spirit of full transparency, and in the expectation that we’ll probably all learn from each other, please post a comment so we can share in your experience of having a Moodscope buddy. (Or perhaps of being a buddy yourself.)

You’ll reach the form to add a comment by clicking on the ‘x comments’ link below. Remember, we’re mainly interested in three things:

1. When you started sharing your scores, did it make any difference to the scores themselves?

2. If it did make a difference, what was it? Did it result in them going up or down?

3. Whether or not there was a difference, what do you think might have been the reason or reasons?

Seth and I will be fascinated to see what we learn.

Thanks as ever.

Jon

138 comments:

  1. We'll be very interested to see what we discover through this, and are happy that it will be shared 'live' as we go.

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    1. Hi Jon
      I'd like to say how glad I am at discovering Moodscope, via a helper from a support group with whom I had 'one to one' sessions & who also uses Moodscope! I have found it extremely helpful especially the 'daily diary of moods' it is useful to look back sometimes to help you find ways of 'keeping up' a positive mood/outlook. Being quite a private person, I'm happy not involving a 'buddy', if I did I think it would be my helper. In the past I suffered phases of anxiety/depression/panic attacks but over time have learnt to seek help & 'open up' to people who are willing to help you. One of the best things I've found is helping someone else who has problems - also volunteering is very beneficial and rewarding.

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  2. Moodscope was recommended to me by my buddy, so they've always been there with me on Moodscope.

    I always feel better when my buddy asks me about my Moodscope score for the day. But I don't have a 'before' and 'after' to be able to compare.

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    1. I empathise with your comment nairobiny. I was also recommended to Moodscope by my buddy - well actually my boyfriend. He's been the only person that i share my moodscope score with. I've shared the fact that I have a moodscope graph and footprint with another person that I've been confiding in, but despite her offer, i've never added her as a moodscope 'buddy'.

      Like Nairobiny, I feel better when my boyfriend asks me about my score and changes in mood. I think it makes a huge difference, as it feels like the effort that i'm putting into completing the questions aren't simply going into the ether and someone is there with me supporting me along the way. When my boyfriend used this site a couple of years ago when he went through a tough time, he only reported 4 mood ratings as he didn't see much point in continuing as he didn't have a buddy. I've done a couple of month's worth of data with his support.

      I would recommend having a buddy to take you through the tough time, as it helped me immensely. I'm also a big fan of the moodscope daily reminders - a lot of the time, the comments do hit a chord and it's lovely to feel that someone else has similar experiences to you.

      Jon, you're a star.

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  3. I started sharing my scores with my husband after my bipolar disorder diagnosis. I do not share with anyone else mostly because of the stigma related to bipolar disorder, plus I don't know anyone else with whom I feel comfortable being that open with about my emotions.

    Sharing scores with a buddy does not make a difference to my moods whatsoever, as the cause of my mood swings is largely organic. Medication makes a bigger difference than anything else, closely followed by keeping my lifestyle as stable and healthy as possible.

    My mood range has definitely narrowed since starting mood stabilizers, so using Moodscope has given me solid evidence that the treatment is working well. I also run statistical analyses of my mood charts against variables like sleep, medication use, and alcohol consumption. The correlations were not particularly meaningful using a 9-point Likert-like scale from a standard mood chart. When I used my Moodscope scores instead, I suddenly found that some of the correlations are (ridiculously!) statistically significant, which also made me feel more certain about what I need to do and change to better manage my mental health.

    I chose to share my scores because I don't always show my moods very well to others, but felt it is important to keep my husband in the loop as to how I'm doing. He tries to be supportive but it's hard for him to do that if he doesn't have a good sense of how I'm feeling. He also wasn't initially convinced that the diagnosis was correct, but now that he's seen my mood scores and the improvement since I started treatment, I think that doubt has been dispelled. On the occasions when I'm feeling well enough to doubt the diagnosis myself, reviewing my Moodscope scores helps me accept that I do need to continue my treatment (medication compliance is typically a problem for people with bipolar disorder) and trust the diagnosis, because I could not fake those scores like I could with a simple single-scale rating.

    Thanks for providing this wonderful tool. It has been really helpful for me!

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  4. I started to use moodscope in the end of October 2010 sharing my scores from the first day. I did setup a groupmailbox to share my scores with a wider audience but then I eventually stopped recording my scores and removed all buddies for about 6 months. Then restarted recording scores and shared with a smaller audience again. In the mean time I had the same kind of scores (very unstable, up and down from day to day - BTW I would like to see a graph about rolling average of my scores for 3 or 7 days, or probably for about two or more weeks.)

    One addition about sharing scores:
    When this enhanced functionality of one month topic average was introduced, my wife looked at them and gave constructive feedback about what I should consider as true score and what I should consider as part of my own depressive or self-cursing (is there such expression in English?) attitude. (BTW - I would love to see Hungarian version (and I would love to participate in the translation process) of this site and I would love to see the capability to handle the special characters such as őűúóüöíéá in the note section...)

    Thank you very much for this service, it means a lot to me :)

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  5. I chose my husband to be my buddy but he wasn't very interested or supportive which made me feel uncomfortable about using moodscope. However, I find moodscope very helpful myself. I don't have a buddy now because we have since split up and I have not wanted to ask anyone else! I don't know anyone else who uses Moodscope but I have told a few friends about it.

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  6. I started using moodscope, but never shared scores because I felt no-one would be that interested on a day to day, although I do have some very good friends. Might it be an idea to offer some sort of befriending on Moodscope itself, just to share scores with another person.

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    1. I would be interested in this. I found sharing with my husband didn't work. Although he is very supportive.
      However, I am part of anonymous groups groups for my depression and mood problems. There are many but my 3 are emotions anonymous, codependantsanonymous and workaholic anonymous. They use the same principles as alcoholics anonymous. These groups recognise that sharing with another issues helpful so I already know how this can help in an indefinable way.
      Not only does it tell us we are not alone, we are being honest and open when we share. This helps us to be willing to change.
      Karen g

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  7. I had no one I wanted to share my moods with. In fact using Moodscope enable me NOT to have to share my miserableness with other people; that was one of its pluses. I could express my miserableness in total safety, without leaning on anybody else. It has proved wonderful. My profile has risen from a score of 7 on day 1 (11 months ago) to the 90s now. Being able to track my reasons for feeling better or worse has been part of this. The patterns are visible, ditto the triggers that send me up or down. It has been a wonderful tool and I have been recommending it to people whose moods fluctuate to a degree that worries them. Once you understand something, it becomes less frightening. My moods still fluctuate quite substantially, but the trajectory is upward. I don't believe that sharing my moodscope "score" would have helped. However Jon's daily homilies are a complete triumph and I wonder if he might think about publishling them into a year book. Such homilies can be horribly grating and off-putting. But he writes very well and somehow manages not to be ingratiating or know all. A terrific achiement.

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  8. I share with my good lady, who is an intermittent user of moodscope, we have both been users for some 18 months. The only time I have had serious problems with my bi-polar was when I stopped scoring in January last year, and wasn't aware I was slipping into a deep trough.And when in it, of course I wasn't aware that the black dog had me and all the "what's the point anymore" stuff comes flooding back. The rest of the time I have been "religiously" attending Moodscope every day,and I can cope with life, because I can manage my mood, based on the results of the moodscope. Buddying. Since you asked. Knowing that my wife is aware of my mood trend, even tho' she rarely if ever comments, high or low scores notwithstanding, I find hugely supportive. I know that she, in small but significant ways, helps me when I'm low, and gently but firmly sort of curbs the wilder excesses when high, but goes along with the ride cheerfully, because she knows what's happening behind the mask. In a strong partnership,or friendship, this "anonymous" heads-up to the partner or pal is even more strengthening. It is this dual aspect of moodscope, the scoring and the sharing (now I have learnt how to best use the system over these last 18 months) that is so incredibly useful. Like all tools, it takes a while to become proficient, but once at ease with it, it's a scaffold, a support, a confessional, a "dear diary", a guide, a framework, a challenge to the mind to investigate a low - or high - score for the rational behind it. To paraphrase the old "apple a day", I reckon, to me, now after 18 months, "a moodscope a day keeps the blues away" Jon, you're a star.

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    1. I do not have a bi polar diagnosis but do jean towards highs or lows. I'd be interested to learn more about using mood scope to keep track of high moods. I am beginning to see what a healthy score is for me but would love to hear more how others use the tool.
      K

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  9. I began sharing with five buddies when going through bad depression, as I was being strongly supported anyway and felt it would help people who wanted to help me; they were all keen to join in and have stuck with me. My scores didn't improve immediately, but I do think that the palpable way it enabled people to respond at once, especially when things were really bad, meant that my recovery has been a bit quicker. I'm well up there now but still share, as my buddies are enjoying sharing my joy. One of them has begun using it herself, too. One of my buddies is the nurse at my workplace - it helped her fight my corner, and I thought it could also help her to see how it might help other people.

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  10. Perhaps offering a mutual be-friending system within Moodscope would help...?

    ( A huge added responsibility though - and could lead to BIG TROUBLE if not monitered

    adequately. ) Finding " buddies " is difficult, maybe because most of one's
    aquaintances have never suffered from Depression or Mood -swings.? Living alone
    I find there is a - maybe understandable - 'stigma'. ?

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  11. I don't share my moodscope scores with anyone - I like knowing it is here just for me and also that if I haven't plotted my score for a few days that I'm not letting anyone else down. I find the comments I put are very useful for me, but if I knew that anyone else was reading them I would be less likely to put them as I do, or even put them at all.

    I quite like the idea of a moodscope pairing with someone anonymous - someone I don't feel I "need" to do anything for but who would/could be there if necessary. And would be happy to do that for someone else as well.

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  12. I don't share my scores as I have no one I would feel comfortable sharing with. I am very good at appearing 'fine' and prefer to hide my moods as far as I can from my (adult) children as I feel it is wrong to burdon them with responsibility for me. Low mood can be disguised (unless very severe) and hypomania joked away for the most part after the event. I stopped using moodscope for several months lately when my mood was very unstable and I was under a lot of pressure. I think that possibly one of the benefits of having a buddy would be that one would be less likely to stop recording for such a long time.

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  13. Oops that didn't really answer the question. Having a buddy means I work harder at making sure my scoring is correct because I do not want to unneccesarily alarm her, it brings a requirement of responsibility, less of the "poor me", more care in the task. Without a buddy I might slip back and not do it daily, because who would know?

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  14. I share with a good friend who has herself had various problems down the years. I found it very helpful to have someone to get in touch and reassure when I was feeling down. However, both of us entered a period last autumn where we both became preoccupied with other things. (a good thing for me ... and a whole new direction in my life). ... so my use of Moodscope became a bit sparse. However, I have assimilated some of the changes that have happened and am now re-energising my use of Moodscope and other tools to stabilise myself and grow.

    I have a couple of friends who have bipolar disorder and know how disabling it can be. I have suggested Moodscope to them, but so far neither has taken it up(or is not telling me!).

    For myself, I feel very fortunate in having generally good mental and physical health. I see tools like Moodscope as a way of monitoring emotional responses to things that happen and using the insights to grow and change in a positive way.

    I'va asked another friend to become my buddy ... let's see how that goes!

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  15. I don't share because I think it's too much of a burden for someone else to have to look at my scores daily. That's such a big ask for someone isn't it? It's not because of stigma - I am now open about my illness, and in fact have used it to raise awareness. I just don't think I can ask so much of someone else. Will be interested to hear how it works for others though.

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  16. For me, the great benefit of Moodscope has been to confirm the advantages of my own lifestyle management for coping with bipolar disorder. It has shown that what I felt was bad for me, is indeed bad, and what I felt was good for me, is indeed good. (I know that I have to take the meds.)

    I had bipolar disorder (with several hospitalizations) for over 30 years before I myself knew what it was. After I learnt the diagnosis, I spent much time and energy researching how I could keep well. My husband is my main support and he is tuned into the danger signs.

    In general I think it's quite hard for folk who do not have BP to understand the constraints it puts on those who do have it.

    Moodscope Plus revealed my 3 highest scoring emotions as attentive, determined and interested which, to me, re-inforced my own role in my own well-being.

    I have not used the buddy system and cannot really envisage using it.

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  17. I have never had a buddy because I can't imagine anyone else would be interested in seeing my daily scores but also I'm not sure I want to share them with anyone. When my scores are high I'm ok and when they're lower and I get the warning from Jon that I am responsible for how I'm feeling this makes me anxious so if I shared my scores it would make me focus on the low times and I fear this would set me on a downward spiral. I prefer to work on myself with the help of Jon's daily emails.

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  18. Hi Jon and co, thanks for this fantastic resource. It has been such a useful means of tracking my moods, noticing triggers and also articulating for myself where I'm at. The new triggergram has been interesting to see what themes come up often.

    I decided not to share my scores with anyone as I thought it might make me feel self-conscious about putting my true scores and thoughts down. However through engaging with the website by daily scoring, and reading your often inspiring emails, if feels like there is some sort of subtle connection/communication with others - some days that is enough anyway! At other times I have verbally described to others (eg. my partner, acupuncturist) what my scores have been doing, without showing them, eg. I might say if they've been up and down or quite level.

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  19. I am intereseted by how many Moodscope users choose not to share their scores. After hearing about Moodscope on R4 Woman's Hour, I immediately decided to give it a go because I had had such a torrid night. I scored 13%. I immediately felt better. The fact that I had revealed to myself in a quantifiable, way, what my state of mind was, left me feeling a sense of relief from the avoidance/denial which unconsciously affects me. I decided to 'risk' myself, to stop repressing, by inviting a couple of buddies. One was a lady who is a nurturing and kind person and with whom I'd felt safe for many years. The other was an old male friend who until the last handful of years, had been rather a domineering and insensitive type. As my sense of personal strength has increased, the welcome surprise I have had is that this person has actually started to open up to me and is showing greater respect for who I am and wonderfully, who he is! A few words of my history to give some perspective; I have had two serious depressive breakdowns and have been Citalopram free for a month now, after having used them for twelve years. I honestly believe that personal repression has been at the centre of my illness and the experience I have had with Moodscope (and, I emphasise, taking the risk of sharing with 'buddies')has contributed to a breakthrough to a new found way of free expression, lack of fear of judgement and faith in the power of understanding and kindness in others. I don't understand the 'comment as' drop down, so though selecting anon. signing out here; Peter J Freeman

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  20. I am so pleased that my bi-polar daughter shares with me as it means I can have some idea of how she is coping. Not being bi-polar I have found my own score mind-blowingly boring - can there be such a thing? It covers such a tiny range compared with my daughter's. On the other hand it is a very useful tool because if she is low and not getting in touch I only have to record a much higher or lower score myself - by cheating I must confess - for her to be concerned and contact me. It worried me to read comments from people who had noone they could ask to be a moodscope buddy, if there was some way to be a buddy volunteer I would gladly be one.

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  21. I don't share because I think I would be subtly influenced to score higher than I really am. When someone is supporting you they hope for improvement I did tell my doctor about Moodscope this week and we discussed how my graph, which is always between 40 and 60, might be typical of someone on antidepressants like me - on an even keel with the highs and lows smoothed off. I am coming off the meds over the next few weeks and we have agreed to review my Moodscope scores in 2 months so we can see how I am doing. This was my first reactive depression brought about by emotional trauma

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  22. I have shared comments since I started on Moodscope so I cant compare a before or after. I have a couple of very empathetic buddies who would always comment if i was down, and congratulate me on improvement. One buddy I dropped because she never made any comment at all. Knowing I am sharing, if there is a big change , I usually send them an explanation. I think it is good to share , because I have some very caring buddies, and while I may not want to write and say 'hey i'm really low', doing this alerts them .

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  23. hi Jon I don't share and as I reflect on why this is I face a slightly uncomfortable recognition that I do not wish to burden anyone with the ups and downs of my mood on a daily basis. It is in line with a personal trait that I believe I might be too heavy for others to bear, and that I can manage on my own. It is true I can manage on my own and it also means I can take a while to get out of troughs whilst I wrestle with the things that have triggered low moods. Still as I am a therapist myself I know that the low mood will pass, I understand some of the reasons why I go low, I do have friends I can ring, I practise lovingkindness 'may I be well and free from suffering, may all beings be well and free from suffering' on the basis that like clouds on the sky this too will pass and is not the core of me.
    JK

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  24. I used to share my Moodscope scores until it was being used against me during arguments. I had only allowed my fiance to see it so he could help me through the tough times since I would put on the "happy face" for everyone else to see. I would not let him see the comments on it which irritated him after a while too.
    Now I just use it for myself so that there is a visual graph to compare things. It helps that I can post things about sleep hours in the comments and see the correlation to the chart.

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  25. I share my scores with my partner, and also 2 other trusted friends. They try to reach out to me when my score is either too low or too high. At first I felt uncomfortable doing this but when in the midst of severe depression I wish there are people (true friends) who can watch over my mood. I am not optimistic about responses so I was pretty much surprised and warm-hearted at the same time. My depression is under control now and though I don't get more responses like few months back, I enjoy letting my BFFs know that I am still alive :)
    I stay with my partner, sometimes when I am in a down mood but I don't know how to start the conversation, when the low score was sent to her inbox, she will pop by and ask if I'm okay, and then I would talk to her about things that bothered me. I think it is helpful in that way too.
    I just started meditation, and one of its functions is to be 'mindful' of one's feeling and emotions for the day. I find Moodscope tremendously helpful in this way.

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  26. I so agree with the stigma parts already expressed & also when I have mentioned my depression & the fact I take anti-depressants, (albeit very reluctantly), I see shock if not horror written on their faces swiftly followed by a patronising sadness/pathectness look.
    So I too would welcome some sort of buddiness scheme whereby we have some limited input into who we would prefer as a buddy & maybe a 'Buddy Co-ordinator' would then allocate a reciprocal buddy.
    This is fraught with potential risk, but maybe that could be somehow factored in also whereby buddies could terminate the buddyship if necessary.

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  27. I too do not share my score. I have survived on-going mental health problems and remained in employment partly by a very well-developed ability to hide much of the turmoil which goes on inside. I am in my 50s and have lived my professional life in fear that I would be 'discovered' and that this would open a pandora's box which would end in my being unemployable and poor. I still think there is a lot of stigma around mental illness, and that for at least some of us who are able to 'pass' (at least most of the time), taking our armour off is very difficult. Low self esteem probably underlies my feeling that no-body else would be interested in what my daily scores are. I also have a problem trusting other people. I would fear that if someone else knew about my state of mind, they might be able to undermine me in some way. I would feel that my privacy was being invaded. All that said, I have found the tool immensely helpful in gaining insight into how my own behaviour and thoughts can impact upon my mental health. I have gained more control and have since starting using it in Spring 2011, achieved a gradual improvement in mood (though uneven!), and also a reduction in the extremity of mood swings. I love Jon's e-mails which provide strong daily support in an anonymous way which suits me best at the moment. Thank-you, Jon!

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  28. I don't share because Moodscope takes the burden off my adult children who have watched my depression helplessly. I feel sharing with them as a 'buddy' would add further to their burden. I rather share with them my positive experience of using Moodscope to help ME monitor my own moods. I am a divorced woman nearing 70, so there is a lot to be depressed about. I'm pleased to see that over the nine months I have been using Moodscope, I have been more able to CHOOSE to be positive. I have no friends whom I would burden with my day to day moods. They have troubles of their own.

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  29. I don't share scores, purely because I feel that my moodscope thing is purely personal and something I do for my own well-being. However, I do share the daily emails as I find them very thought-provoking, motivational and often just helpful for self-reflection. I have shared these with friends, family and colleagues who in turn have found them to be very useful.

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    1. This is also my case. :) Also, I don't have any close friend I could use as a buddy ^^;

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  30. Hello Jon,
    Congratulations on Moodscope as it's obviously assisting many people in many ways. I've been using it for about 10 months and find it helps me to gain insight into my moods, take responsibility for them and steer a calmer, more productive course through life. On a day-to-day basis it keeps me rooted, stable and thus happy. However, I don't share my scores simply because if I had an extreme mood swing, the first person I'd call would be my doctor. Friends can always help psychologically but professional help is vital for chemical imbalances. One of the excellent features of Moodscape is that it answers so many different needs in a variety of ways. With or without buddies.

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  31. Marianne, Verona/ItalyFebruary 05, 2012 12:17 pm

    I did not choose a buddy for my Moodscope tests. Even having family, good friends I do not like to bore them -I think- with my high or low results. Also because they cannot do more to me than you are doing, Jon, with your every-day-emails, they are nice... I have a very-far-away lover and neither him I want to bore, he's so very busy with his teaching and sends me some e-mail weekly (2-3) and very sometimes we can talk to each other on Skype. So I hold my results for myself.
    Thank you, Jon.

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  32. My girlfriend was the one to introduce Moodscope to me, so we were buddies from when I first started. It was good for a while, we were able to be more open about our feelings without having to start it off with a deep or depressing conversation, and we were able to give each other advice and hope when we were feeling low, and feel proud of each other when we achieved things and got high scores and felt happy.

    However, I started to realise that I was feeling guilty whenever I went through a week or two of incredibly low scores. I started to be less honest about my true feelings, despite them being obviously shown on the Moodscope graph for my girlfriend to see. And soon enough, I started to run out of advice for my girlfriend when she started going through weeks of low scores, too. It just made us both feel absolutely terrible, that we were peeking into each other's feelings and not being able to do anything about it.

    So, I've made a new profile for myself, and have decided not to be influenced by the fact that people can see my results, by making sure that I don't have any buddies. I'm sure my girlfriend can understand that. And who knows, after a while, I might add her back as my buddy. But for now, I want to be truly honest with myself in terms of taking the Moodscope test and see how things pan out without someone watching over my shoulder. It's nothing to do with my girlfriend, it's just the way I feel. I love her very much and I'm always honest with her, so I'll let her know about this ASAP. She won't mind, that I know.

    I'm sure a lot of people feel differently about having a buddy or not having a buddy, but this is my view. If you feel influenced to change your score because you feel guilty about showing a low score to your buddy, then you shouldn't have a buddy.

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  33. The most helpful thing about moodscope is being able to have buddies, I've used various moodcharts over the years but this is the only one to have buddies, I have one friend who has supported me for years and another who also has bipolar and we support each other, I am also her buddy. It's good to have someone who knows without me having to tell them and if low, I will get a phone call, text or e mail checking up on me and can do the same to my friend.

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  34. I also like the daily e mails, thank you Jon for finding something different and helpful to say each day!

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  35. I don't share my scores. I would like to. When I talk about my illness my wife becomes challenging. Friends are only friends when I am well. I do have one good friend who is also Bipolar, but I don't wish to overload him.

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  36. I don't share. After all, it's all about keeping up the facade that everything's OK and you're in control, isn't it ? Tracking helps focus on different aspects of how I feel. It's interesting that the few seconds it takes to score each emotion actually evoke that emotion (e.g., I wasn't feeling angry, but evoking anger to score it makes me feel anger).

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  37. Frankie

    I started using Moodscope in October and it has been a HUGE help (thank-you Jon from the bottom of my heart).

    I do not use the Buddy system, as my husband suffers more than I do from mood swings and I think he would find it difficult to know I was low when he was also low; I would not want to burden other friends with my moods; my husband started using it and put me as a buddy, which really only confirmed what I already knew; however when he got really low he removed me; which I guessed at the time was because of his low mood; my daughter who suffers from PTSD (Post traumatic stress disorder) also started using it and included me as a buddy for a while; this allowed me to send her encouraging email messages (she is a student away from home). She found it useful for a while but has since removed me as a buddy which I know is because she is going through a particularly tough time at the moment.

    In any case, nothing stops me from sharing my scores with whoever should I wish; the good thing about Moodscope is it allows me not to panic when I am low as I can see that ups and downs are all part of life;

    Jon your daily messages are a God send - thank-you!

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  38. I share only with my husband on a daily basis, although I also share with my therapist and GP in graph form as a means of attempting to address my problems. My scores were unaffected by sharing with my husband, in large part I think because he is very sensitive to my mood anyway. Sharing with the health professionals was a very positive experience, they've dispassionately helped me analyse my scores and triggers, resulting in a significant improvement in score.
    I would also like to join the chorus of thanks to Jon and the team - his mails make all the difference to my day and to that of many others looking at this blog! As I've said in a personal message to the team before - you guys need to be giving yourself a 3 for pride on a regular basis!

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  39. I used to share with my husband who works away from home during the week. However he was under stress with a new job at the time so when receiving lower than usual scores from me his stress levels increased. To protect him I decided to stop sharing. However for the first month or so of using Moodscope knowing that he knew that my mood was getting increasingly better gave us both a positive outlook. I now do my scores very intermittently (naughty) but have maintained a steady increase for some time and share this verbally with my husband.

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  40. I do not share my results with anyone for the only reason that keeping it for myself I do not have to give explanations to anyone about my feelings. As a matter of fact, if I wanted to share, there are a few people who (I hope) wouldn't mind receiving mails with my scores (anyway, I don't really use Moodscope on very regular basis so it wouldn't be that annoying). But even with those close friends (family excluded) I really feel that it would put too much pressure on our relationships: once I start sharing they would feel obliged to constantly monitor the results since they are empathic, and on the other hand it would put pressure on me to constantly give explanations about the daily issues that bring me down. And since those issues are usually very small details of someone's behaviour or a few slightly inconsiderate words, I don't think anyone would have the patience to deal with it. Besides, people cannot avoid giving the "let's cheer-up" talk when seeing that someone is feeling not good which makes me feel really uncomfortable.
    P.S. I do NOT have bipolar disorder.

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  41. I don't share because there is no-one I trust to share, can't have my friends thinking I am a nut job can I? This is the problem with mental illness, the stigma is still so prevalent in our commenity. I have heard the excluding comments made by friends and colleagues towards sufferers of mental health.
    I don't always complete the test because on a given day I am not sure what I am feeling so the scores are not accurate but I love the daily pep talk this helps to break the depressive walking thought.

    Perhaps there is scope on yr site for people to offer to buddy someone like me, I am sure I am not the only one in this position.

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  42. I don't have any buddies. My partner can see when I'm down but as he's stressed at work too there's no point in sending him mail on how bad I feel. I know that when I share my diabolic days with my mum she worries until she sees me again so there's no way I'd share the ups and downs with her. Basically I don't want to impose my moods on anyone more than I do face to face. I agree that it would be nice to have some people within Moodscope to be your buddy but I tried Blurt for a while. I was assigned a Blurt mentor and she drove me mad with anger within a few e-mails. She was suggesting how I could deal with things and I considered it to be impractical and frankly she came across rude sometimes too. I wanted someone to be sympathetic not to try and fix my world. She didn't know nearly enough about me to do that. I stopped using Blurt.

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  43. I tried sharing with my otherwise very supportive wife but she could not accept them on her work email system, so she said. I don't know of anyone else to share with. My psychiatrist knows I use Moodscope and encourages its use strongly on my care plan. I don't think I want to share with him. There was no change in my scores when I thought I was sharing to otherwise.

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  44. Like so many other Moodscopers I don't share my scores with a buddy. I find Moodscope and Jon's daily emails tremendously helpful and using the site almost daily has helped me understand myself better and adopt a more positive outlook. The trait I'm most aware of is that it's made me far more determined to cope.

    It's so good to feel understood. I've battled with anxiety for most of my adult life but have done my utmost to conceal the fact. I now accept my 'failings' more readily but don't feel inclined to share my innermost feelings with a buddy.

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  45. My husband introduced me to moodscope. I started using it to understand what it was. I am now a regular user whilst my husband is not. I used moodscope for about a month before sharing with my husband. I don't remember noticing any change to my scores through sharing. I like the way in which by sharing my moodscope scores it gives my husband an insight into my moods and I feel good when he comments or asks about changes in them.

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  46. 1. When you started sharing your scores, did it make any difference to the scores themselves?

    I just recently started using moodscope and started sharing right away.

    2. If it did make a difference, what was it? Did it result in them going up or down?
    I think that it did make a difference when I saw that my buddies were concerned and cared about me. It helps to know that people are there for you. I think it did improve my score, among other things.

    3. Whether or not there was a difference, what do you think might have been the reason or reasons?
    The support system defnitely helps, people may say they are there for you, but with Moodscope, it's right there in black and white. It's concrete. It's taking an action, which I feel is very important in order to improve not only mood and outlook, but anything in life.

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  47. 1. When you started sharing your scores, did it make any difference to the scores themselves?

    I just recently started using moodscope and started sharing right away.

    2. If it did make a difference, what was it? Did it result in them going up or down?
    I think that it did make a difference when I saw that my buddies were concerned and cared about me. It helps to know that people are there for you. I think it did improve my score, among other things.

    3. Whether or not there was a difference, what do you think might have been the reason or reasons?
    The support system defnitely helps, people may say they are there for you, but with Moodscope, it's right there in black and white. It's concrete. It's taking an action, which I feel is very important in order to improve not only mood and outlook, but anything in life.

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  48. I have been using Moodscope for many months now.I thought about buddies but like others felt I would not be able to be as honest with my scoring. The new '...ograms' are a useful overview. jon's observations are helpul. I think the site is good and (as a GP) have suggested it to a number of patients but usually only when they are recovering

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    1. I cannot share my Moodscope scores. It is difficult enough being honest with myself; the thought of anyone seeing my score would totally block me - even stop me moodscoping altogether.

      I got a big boost from seeing my upward trend through the unlimited time-line, and the new '..ograms' have given my diary-writing more inspiration - I now often carry on writing on another platform when I've run out of space on Moodscope.

      Delete
  49. I share my Moodscope scores with my girlfriend. She used to share hers with me too, but she has since stopped using Moodscope. In her words, "I don't want Moodscope to remind me how terrible I'm doing."

    Anyway, I'm not even sure if she still reads my shared scores. However, I just assume that she will be reading them as I take each test. I find that if I'm feeling gloomy, my score tends to be lower than prior to sharing my score. On the contrary, when I'm feeling well my score leans higher than after sharing started. To me, it seems that while I'm taking the test I have it in the back of my mind that I want her to know decisively my status. So if I'm feeling good, I tend to think about how my girlfriend will be reading my higher than average score. This may be influencing how I answer each card. I would literally imagine she would response as she reads my score. If I am answering many 3's and 4's, I picture her recognizing that I'm doing well today on my 75 to 80 percent score. This leads me to answer successive questions with higher card numbers.

    I really find Moodscope helpful. Thank you for being able to provide such a wonderful service to everyone for free. Keep up the good work.

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  50. I agree with a lot of the comments of those who do not share their scores with buddies, although I do let my supportive husband know my score verbally from time to time, and especially if there has been a sustained dip in the score over a few days. Moodscope is a brilliant tool to use when recovering from a depressive illness, I have found. I use my scores, and comments, to understand what triggers my low mood and take steps to stop it getting lower, in so far as I am able.

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  51. I have always shared my scores with the person who suggested MoodScope to me. So I have no "not sharing" data for you.

    Sometimes when I find it hard to ask for help while I am struggeling, I might fill out Moodscope in a way that my buddy sees I am having a hard time... he never fails to follow up on it and it has meant on more than one occasion that my scores improved because of an email, a 5 minute telephone conversation or sharing a cup of coffee.

    The improvement comes from personal contact on a day that is hard, without me really having to add to the stress of reaching out.

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  52. I would share, think it might be useful to have someone "out there" who knows where I'm at... but I can't think of who that would be because I don't want it to be someone who would make too big a deal of scores, someone close to me who would then be 'watching me', etc. I have many very good friends with whom I would share authentically when I am with them but... not sure I would send them my scores but I'm worried they would respond in a way that was not helpful to me and then there would be no way to "erase" the sharing.

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  53. Wanted to say a big shout out to Jon and his enlightening and common sense emails - pleasure to read.
    I have been suffering with severe depression since August last year and was actively sucidal in the acute phase (Oct-Nov) and had to be actively restrained (not my proudest momemt by far)
    I still feel like shit occasionally for a multitude of reasons normally when I start dwelling or feeling sorry for myself and my life is a bit of train wreck somedays
    anyhow wihtout further ado:
    . When you started sharing your scores, did it make any difference to the scores themselves?
    No because when I go down and shut down my scores have still plummented even with buddies being aware. However it is reassuring to know that others know.

    2. If it did make a difference, what was it? Did it result in them going up or down?

    3. Whether or not there was a difference, what do you think might have been the reason or reasons?
    Sometimes I have friends cajoling me into getting the score up and promising to have me round for a meal or suchlike which does help to motivate me to become stronger.

    Stay safe Jon
    Good luck with the research Seth
    Cheers Benjamin :-)

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  54. I have used Moodscope since my diagnosis for depression last summer. I started straight away sharing my scores with my wife first then two other close friends shortly after. When I have a dip my friends check up on me and I then have to explain my low mood to them. THis act of explanation means I have to take constructive action with regard to digging myself out of my low state. It's almost an implicit contract - in return for their buddiness I have to take a more positive approach to fixing my low mood.

    So buddies affect me scores positively, but not in a way that is distinct from the rest of the Moodscope effect - which for me is all about making mood swings tangible.

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  55. I do not share my score as I suffer from social phobia and general anxiety despite medication targeted on these areas. Having worked as a psychotherapist I know how deeply seated is the prejudice towards mental illness here in the UK and have no one to share with other than my Daughter and I do not want to rely on her in this way. I feel that it would be valuable to have an annonymous contact but have reservations as an untrained person may well do real harm if they give unskilled feedback.

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  56. I used moodscope for about 9 months before introducing a really close friend to it. I'd used it quite happily on my own without a buddy and noticed a gradual increase in my scores - but I had separated from my long term partner 3 months before starting to use it so some upward movement was probably due to coming to terms with all that. My friend and I found the buddy experience tricky -we were both using moodscope and effectively swapping scores so inevitably this led to comparison which wasn't helpful - who knows if my 60% was the same as his 40% in terms of what it meant to us individually. I had also found that using moodscope had increased my self-awareness to such an extent that I can now guess my scores acurately give or take 5% - and what this meant was I didn't want to record when I was feeling a bit low and didn't want my friend to know - the transparency was an inhibiter. We also have done things to upset each other (despite being great friends) and decided that it wouldn't be helpful to then see a dip and feel responsible for the others low mood. We also concluded that it would be possible to use it in a manipualtive way if you were that way inclined (which we're not). So after a couple of months of buddying we have removed each other as buddies and are much happier with that arrangement - we occasionally mention our scores and still think the site is absolutely fab but we just have lots of questions about the buddy thing. Luckily neither of us have suffered from clinical depression or are bipolar - I can see that having a buddy may be useful in those instances. But generally Jon its great and I mention moodscope all the time.

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  57. I have been using Moodscope for about one year now.Altough I try to take the test everyday,it isn't always easy for me to accept the change between highs and lows on the score.My friends and family know about my mental disorder and emotional problems, but until now I found noone who'd like to be my buddy.I'm certain it can be helpful in many ways to have someone to trust and to support.Feeling alone isn't good at all.
    Yes I would like to find a buddy.

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  58. I don't share my moodscope scores. I don't want anyone asking me about why I picked one score over another or about my explanation for any given day. I view it as a diary of sorts, private for my own contemplation.

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  59. For the most part I am a pretty balanced individual (so far) although I do have close family members who have been diagnosed with various forms of depression. I have suggested moodscope to friends and family and have shared my graphs online with some of them, although not on a daily, buddy basis. I would be willing to do so in support of others, but don't really feel the need to do so. Completing the graphs (almost) daily is enough for me.

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  60. I started using moodscope in Nov '11 and found it gave me a measuring stick for my moods.....I have shared my charts with my PsychNP and my psychologist so that they are in the loop (I print it out for them). Both have said that it's very helpful.

    I have depression and PMDD, and the chart helps me to compare my moods % to my cycle, my exercise logs, medication changes and important life events. In fact, it was critical for identifying the PMDD, which was done over the phone with the PsychNP look at her visit notes and dates, and me looking at my chart and my cycle log. It was very plain that a week before, things got bad, bottoming out in suicidal thoughts D1LMP-1. Now it's a clear documented pattern that provides predictable results going forward. I still get the suicidal thoughts, but they are becoming a signpost rather than an event in and of themselves.

    I just showed the Affectogram and Triggergram to my PsychNP this last visit, and that's been fabulous, the triggergram clearly shows what's key to good mood and higher numbers and led to some medication changes. The affectogram is a little more difficult, in that it takes some interpretation....but I am starting to get the hang of it, and it's showing that the positive feelings are more fleeting than the negatives.....we'll work on that.

    Finally, I share my number with my husband, a good friend also using it. My friend and I send an email when things get low.....So the day I was at 4%, she emailed me to ask what's going on which was good, someone was looking out for me.

    My husband has been getting the numbers, but was not sure what they meant until he saw me doing it one day. Now he's asking me if I have done it and pushing me to play cards.

    So Yes, sharing the numbers is a big part of this, but it does not affect my mood so much as the support I am able to get without asking when things are bad. It's also proven in my case to be key to diagnosis, treatment and monitoring my progress. I might be further helpful if there was a public page on the site for professionals to put relevant information for them out there to help them come up to speed....like, your pt will post a number every day for each of these affects on a scale of 0-3, they can provide narrative for tracking of meds, events, triggers, results that can be included, this is how to use the triggergram/affectogram etc. There may opportunity for extending functionality specifically for professionals to help their patients, perhaps as a separate site to preserve the simplicity of the current site for folks like me where life is taking a lot of time and simplicity is good.

    Finally, not related to sharing, but just to doing the test everyday: It's good to check in on myself. Some days surprise me, as I find myself not answering the good affect with high numbers because I just feel kind of flat.....other days I realize that yes, I feel inspired or excited or what have you.....that's a good revelation to have when you have depression.

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  61. I share my scores with my therapist. I appreciate the quick check in if my score goes down substantially. I don't feel like I can share with my boyfriend since I don't feel like he understands what I struggle with. I don't have any friends who use this so I seems like a lot to ask unless it's mutual.

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  62. When I first signed up I added a buddy. I felt it made my scores artificially increase... If I was having a bad day and my mood was low, my "buddy" would find the email a downer, and I didn't want to bring others down with me. I've been diagnosed with depression and anxiety among other things, so my low mood was generally caused by excess anxiety, which was increased at the thought of having to share the score

    I guess the big difference was that when someone else was involved, I didn't want my mood to harm them, so I falsely recorded higher scores. Now, without a buddy, my scores are generally lower, but at least they are genuine. I've also found that I am more likely to record my scores when someone isn't 'looking over my shoulder'

    I am also presently involved in the diagnostic process for Adult Asergers, so there is a good chance that i am not "neuro typical", if that makes any difference to the results :)

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  63. I share with my partner. He finds it very useful as he travels a lot and can keep an eye on me on a daily basis even when he's away.

    I also allow access to my scores (without sending a daily email) to my therapist who checks it periodically, especially just before I have a session with him. We all find it very helpful.

    I've shared with these two people from day one of using Moodscope so I can't comment whether it makes a difference or not but I wanted to post anyway to say "Thanks Moodscope, you help me a lot".

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  64. I'm rather relieved to see the considerable number of other people who, like me, don't have a buddy. I assumed everyone else had them and that I was the odd one out! I have felt there is some pressure from Moodscope to have one or several buddies, but I find Moodscope v helpful even without that, including the writing of comments on the graph of daily scores. The triggergram is also a very useful new tool in showing what factors are associated with a certain mood. I would feel uncomfortable having buddies: it would be pressure on them, and there are certain things I prefer to keep to myself. I think perhaps Moodscope has been too inclined to think that buddies are necessary if someone is to get the most benefit from the site. This may be true for some people, but I know it would not be for me.

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    1. I'm relieved too! I kind of assumed that most people have buddies but I haven't wanted to burden partner or friends with more evidence than they have already of the vagaries of my mood - and I'd rather learn to deal with the lows myself. I would worry too about upsetting others and might not take the test honestly. When I'm really low, the last thing I want is to explain myself to anyone else. The graph and the comments I record are enought for me.

      Delete
  65. I don't share. I thought about it at first, there were two people who I might have liked to share with, but when I told them about Moodscope and what I was doing they didn't express any interest so I didn't go beyond that.

    And there was the issue of overloading a buddy with daily emails. I thought if there was a weekly digest I might feel better about it.

    But when I really think about it, I am kind of a loner and I'm not sure I would share anyway. I don't want someone calling me every time my score drops. I don't want to have to explain.

    I really like using Moodscope for self-monitoring. I want to catch myself before I make a deep plunge and stay down too long. I do use the info with my doctor. I love having something concrete to show and talk about.

    Thank you for making it available. I tell people about it all the time. I think it is a very useful tool.

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  66. I share with a very good friend (since elementary school) as well as with three other friends I met in a therapy group, who also share their moodscope scores with me.

    I'm not sure if having buddies has made a difference, but I'm pretty sure tracking my mood daily makes a difference. I think pre-Moodscope, I would not realize i was on the way down until 10 or so days had passed, and so I had done nothing. But with Moodscope, I can see if it's a trend and do something immediately. It means I deliberately intervene earlier. I've also come up with a few more possible intereventions, which give me a bigger choice, which I like. Thanks, Jon & Moodscope staff.

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  67. I was introduced to Moodscope by my buddy and so my buddy has been there with me on the highs and lows.
    I think it doesn't alter my scores. What I do feel it gives me security in knowing that if the scores are particularly low my bud will get in touch via email, txt and offer encouragement. Equally if the moodscore is particularly high. Because I trust and have absolute confidence in my bud the scores are not changing or altering because the bud is viewing them. My scores are as a result of my mood on that day and not because of my buddy.
    However, I guess if you don't have a secure trust confidence in the person who is your bud then perhaps you may alter the scores sub-consciously for fear of stigma, fear of embarrassment etc.

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  68. I don't share my scores because I'm single at the moment, and the scores feel to me like something I'd share with a partner. If I were in a good relationship I think I'd want to share my scores. I've occasionally thought about asking a friend to be my buddy on the site, but that seems like quite a burden for someone who has their own life, their own partner. I noticed another person commenting that about sharing with their therapist, and that sounds like something worth exploring.

    Using Moodscope has been wonderful for me even without sharing --- it is so helpful to pay attention, to be conscious about my moods. And I do love Jon's daily messages as well. Thank you so much for this site!

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  69. I find it fascinating to read the comments here and to realise that there's quite a community of Moodscope users even if its members are isolated from each other. Any chance in the future of some kind of Forum on Moodscope where users could exchange experiences on strategies to try and deal with mood swings, using Moodscope tools etc? I think this could be very helpful and supportive.

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  70. I was also introduced to Moodscope by my buddy about one year ago and We have been buddies ever since. She has emailed me when I am low and sometimes phoned me. She offers kind words, asks if I want to talk or if I just want to go under a fleece! Then she observed trends in my moods and pointed these out to me, which was useful. So I began to use the comments tool and found this also helped me understand how my moods went up and down and what helped most. The most important aspect of having a buddy is that I can be honest, whereas for other people I put on a brave face and this doesn't provide me the empathy or support that I really need. Having always put on a brave face throughout my life I have learnt to survive, show I am coping yet inside I am in turmoil. This turmoil eventually has caused me to burn out and become seriously depressed (10% when i started using Moodscope) because I wasn't coping and no one knew. My buddy has been so supportive as I have allowed her to see my true feelings, this has helped me lift my mood from 10% to much more acceptable mood scores. Without my buddy I would be very lonely and probably still have a low moods score. I too also like Jon's daily messages, some days they hit home more than others.

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  71. I share with my identical twin, as I find it helps me communicate things about my daily life and somewhat overcomes obstacle that living in different time zones and being on the road for work present. She shares with me as well. It is our small window into the other's world.

    Although we did discuss that it really depends on when you take the moodscope - she often does it early in the day and I late in the day - what it is really portraying.

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    1. I share with my best friend who lives half way round the world. When my score dipped badly the one and only time she emailed me at once, and soon we were chatting via skype. It helped me to have my buddy, took away a lot of the pain I was feeling, and helped me to see round the corner, that it was just my mood, and not ME. She helps me to remember that I don't HAVE to be depressed or stressed, I can CHOOSE to be calm, to be happier. I don't feel guilty for asking for her help as a buddy - she is a real friend, one I can trust and vice versa. I help her too sometimes. If I didn't have a buddy I think my scores would be more or less the same; but, if I did crash, without a buddy the low mood results might linger over several days instead of just that day or two.
      And I too appreciate Jon's comments everyday - they are so sensible and inspirational. Thank you Jon and the Moodscope Team.

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  72. I want to echo everyone's thanks for all the help Moodscope has been to me. I've been using it for about 14 months, and it has helped me to see how my feelings are related to what's going on in my life. I also love getting the emails every day! I don't have any buddies either, and I'm not really interested in having any. I like that I can be so honest with myself because I know no one else is going to look at it, even though I have friends who would be happy to be my buddies.

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  73. I am struck by how many people say they don't share their scores because they cannot imagine the possible benefits of doing so, and don't want to overload friends and family.

    My challenge would be...how do you know, unless you try? I've been using Moodscope since last June, and it was only when I hit a particularly rough patch just before Christmas that a friend issued me the above challenge. So now I share my scores with 3 friends, 2 from a depression support group I am part of, and one other. Has it affected my scores? Hard to say, as there are so many complex factors involved in mood, and I'll try most things that may help to lift it. It has helped me feel like there is a greater safety net there, and given me a greater awareness of when I'm slipping back into my treacle pit; I now know that any score between 20 and 30 means I am in dangerous territory and need to take some remedial action, and if I get below 20 then I'm really in a bad way. My friends know this too...and I know that as soon as a score dips into these areas, they'll ping me back an e-mail or send me a text to say 'hey, what's going on Mike, wanna talk? Anything we can do to help?' It's usually at EXACTLY the time when, because of my mood, I feel most like not talking to anyone and withdrawing into my shell...and therefore is also EXACTLY the time when I need this external reaching in to help me break that pattern. Like many people, I find it impossible to pick up the phone or e-mail a friend to say 'I'm feeling utterly rubbish today'....but the moodscope buddy scoring thing does this for me.

    Part of the reason I let my mind talk me into resisting score sharing for ages was the fallacy that it meant others would any comments I had added - some of mine were quite personal, and I didn't want to share that aspect - and it was only when I investigated further that I realised the score-sharing functionality does NOT allow buddies to read your comments that I was able to begin doing so. From reading comments on here, it seems as if a number of other folk also erroneously believe this, and it may help people to take the leap of faith into score-sharing if you could make this issue a little more explicit, Jon.

    One other thing I have noticed - part of my resistance to using the buddy facility was not wanting to burden friends with a daily mike-mental-health-check, and it all felt way too self-indulgent to me. However, friends report almost the opposite - that they can rest assured that I am doing okay without worrying about me, precisely because they get these regular reports into my mood. And part of the compromise I made with myself was to take the moodscope test every other day, rather than every single day, so that friends didn't feel swamped by this. I find that works fine for me.

    In summary - if you can find one or more people that you trust even a little, then I would encourage you to give it a go. There's a real truism that by sharing your own pain and struggle in life with someone else, it makes it easier for them to be able to open up to you in return, which deepens the connection and leads to greater honesty and authenticity. And I'm a great believer that it is precisely this sense of a depth of connection with those around me that is one major factor that helps with my own recovery.
    Love and best wishes to you all, and particularly to Jon and the Moodscope team for developing such a wonderful resource x

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  74. Moodscope has helped me identify incidents in my life with my mood. For example if I have to assert myself strongly with someone, I feel exhilarated and very proud of myself for about two day then gradually my mood will lower and a week later I will feel apathetic and down. I love that it is helping me make sense of my emotions and as a result I am not judgemental of them.
    I don't share because I find it a very personal thing and want to keep it for myself. I also love the emails.

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  75. sorry, I've not yet had the courage to share. I'm not clear if the people I shared with would be able to see the comments about my day and they are too personal to share - I shared it with myself and it seems as though the sharee would have access to the whole account, including the ability to make changes. Plus I don't want to clutter the inboxes of my nearest & dearest. But just knowing my own score has been really help me & appears to be normalising out at 60% which is just grand!

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  76. I started out not having a buddy, as I wanted to get to grips with how the site worked...

    After a while I went into quite a deep depression due to things happening in my life and I decided that letting my partner have this window into how I was doing, when I found it very difficult to open up and share might be helpful. She knew I was using Moddscope, although I had never shared any details, so i just sent her a message asking her to be my buddy... She accepted!

    I do not think my scores have been grossly affected by knowing that she will see them, but I do think that knowing that she has seen them allows her to feel that she has a bit of a handle on how I am and if I need extra support. I am also, I suspect, a little more aware of my own responses, knowing that she will see my % score, and it has made me reflect more on why I feel so Jittery, or Ashamed, or whatever...

    I tend to do my score last thing at night and if she won't see it til the morning and I think the score is significant in either direction I just say "8%" (my lowest) or whatever and she knows what that means. She does not question me about the details of the responses, or the reasons for the changes - I think she mostly knows these anyway...

    I can't say that I am getting much better as yet, but all kinds of things, including physical ill-health, are contributing to that. I have hope that things WILL improve... I KNOW that Moodscope will play a part in that...

    I LOVE the daily e-mails and often share them on Facebook as I think they can be truely inspiring.

    Thanks Jon!

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  77. I share with two buddies. One of them likes to comment very regularly, and we have an ongoing conversation about my "scores" (she sees them as good performances when they are high, even if sometimes I know I have to watch out for the coming crash before it actually shows in my moods!) and the other one would enquire only when something exceptional shows up.

    Both feedbacks are priceless for me: I enjoy the ongoing conversation with the friend - who sometimes comes in person, and we take extensive walks together and talk about the events in her life and in mine, comparing moods and she allows me to encourage her and lift her own moods (although she has not yet joined Moodscope for herself, I am not giving up on the idea that it will be beneficial to her as well).

    I know that when I started sharing it made a huge difference: I wanted to "show off" good scores, and I didn't want to have to stay "in the funk" too long, because I didn't want to worry my friends, the one who is far away, as the one who would pick up her phone and ask me to give her specifics.

    So when I know that I am having harder times, I take the necessary steps during the day to overcome my issues, I apply myself to making things the best I can, and it actually works, it does end up lifting my moods, more quickly and more efficiently.

    I can't recommend enough the virtue of Moodscope, I am a true fan. I am well aware it may not be for everyone, but in my case, it has proven to be a fantastic tool.

    Thank you so much!

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  78. Being finally 'diagnosed' with a mood disorder helped me to move forward in gaining stability in my life. Moodscope has been so helpful to keep my psychiatrist and counselor in check with my progress, and the affects of medication. --There is a way to quantify subjective data!

    ---It has helped me to check myself & look for reoccurring triggers, and even acknowledge my own ups and downs as legitimate!

    I have four buddies, with only two that respond or seem to be noticing the scores at all. The one that keeps constant notice, to the extent of always texting when I have an especially low score, is so wonderful, but I found myself feeling like I didn't want to disappoint after spending time with them, then taking the test--SCARY!

    I had never felt this way before, and made notecards with the definitions of each Moodscope word, to keep myself objective. I do not want to be attention-seeking in this situation, just honest...I do not want to be too proud to seek help.


    1. When you started sharing your scores, did it make any difference to the scores themselves?
    NO

    2. If it did make a difference, what was it? Did it result in them going up or down? ------

    3. Whether or not there was a difference, what do you think might have been the reason or reasons?
    The two that I originally shared scores with did not do much in response to them. One was my sister, who was struggling with depression ( we walked through these things together ) and we talked so often that the scores didn't seem to mean much to her.
    The other was an accountability partner at church, and there was a certain type of closeness, but I received little response from her, and after sharing with her for months now, I rarely ever hear a response in any way. The lackadaisical attitude allowed me to be free to score whatever I wanted, knowing that I wasn't just alone in my mood room.
    Having a psychology major friend as a share buddy didn't affect, but made me very encouraged with the lack of judgement on my moods.
    Trying not to get caught up in disappointing my close, texting friend! My wellbeing will not get better if I am just putting on a show!

    All the best to other 'Scopers.

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  79. started Moodscope without buddies, no change in pattern after adding them. I have the range of buddies, one who does not Moodscope and does not email,but says she likes being part of my life in a peripheral sort of way. The next is my husband's uncle, who Moodscopes and we correspond frequently, up to seval times per day. The last is my Dad, who doesn't Moodscope but keeps an eye on trends. We email at least once a week.

    It makes a difference in that I occasionally send out 'do not worry' emails with sudden changes, citing lack of sleep or unexpected emotional entanglements at work.

    I have recommended Moodscope to several college students, and have been sharing with my psychiatrist. My husband is too close for effective buddy-ing, too likely to look for specific problems in our relationship or jump to problem-solving. Using physically distant family members seems to work for me, as they are ones I would seek out on my own and would be in on the family discussions anyhow. It is a good way to get info out to the rest unless I ask for privacy. I have not made many friends who are not work related, and am uncomfortable with sharing within work groups.

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  80. Hi, moodscope is working very well for me, really changed for better my mood. I don`t share because one of my problems is just the lack of friends and it is true what somebody say: I feel sad each time you remind that possibility I miss. But what can I do? share with people who don`t care or don`t really know me? hard to ask!

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  81. I dont have a buddy because I feel I would be a drain on that person when I was down.Also Im not sure I want people I know to know just how low I feel.I have always tried to hide my low moods as Iv been brought up to feel that nobody likes a miserable person.Having said that my ex who has sadly died and was my therapist to start with, maybe I would have chosen him,he would always listen to me but Im still not sure I would be 'honest' with my answers.
    What I really like about this site and it's something that has helped me so much is Jons emails.When I feel so low,in fact too low to do a score,I always read Jons emails and I find that alone can help lift me.
    The idea that a buddy could be from this site is a thought.It could cause more problems though if they are very low and maybe pull you down when things are just ticking over nicely.
    Good Luck and thank you for being there

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  82. I have been 'sharing' with two buddies almost since I began Moodscope. One of the buddies is my husband, and he sends me a text or an email if my score is low - or else we discuss it during the day. The other buddy is a close friend who has been very supportive and sends me uplifting texts or even rings me if my score is particularly low and if she hasn't heard from me for a couple of days. 

    A recent addition to the buddy system is I am a buddy to my husband, and as above, we discuss how we are feeling and what is causing the low periods, also, I am now a buddy to my daughter, who is away in uni and feeling particularly low since being ill at Christmas. I text her when I get her scores as well as texting her to see if she needs a text-hug! I email her to give her ideas how to deal with the next few minutes/hour or the whole day, if things are really bad...yes, we live in the house of crazy!

    I am not sure if my score is affected by the fact that someone else can see the result and may respond - but I feel it is a bit of a comfort blanket for me: having a buddy is a great system: knowing someone else is there and that they might just have the right thing to do or say that drags you back up from your lowest point at that particular time. 

    Although my close buddy-friend isn't using Moodscope, as she doesn't feel depressed, life's pressures get her down too and she knows that when she has had a bad day/problem - she can share it with me. Buddies are friends after all!

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  83. I chose a good friend to become my buddy after using Moodscope for about 8 months. I feel it has helped to know that somebody out there will see my score and we can chat about it. I do have to be honest when taking the test and not fabricate anything as I know my friend will see it! Having a buddy now has changed my attitude to taking the test, for the better I think. Originally I couldn't think of anyone I knew to ask, so I asked Moodscope for an anonymous buddy, but you don't have that service. I am now glad you didn't offer me a stranger to buddy me.
    The e-mails from Jon do feel like having a buddy though, I didn't feel alone before. It's a wonderful service, thank you all.

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  84. I work as a therapist within the NHS and recommend this clients. They find it helpful to record their scores. I am not aware of any of them sharing with others their scores. I would not want to have them share their scores with me as this would put an onus on me to check and respond to them - something for which I can not make the time. I may be on leave when they record a particularly low score and would be unable to respond.

    I complete moodscope myself and find it helpful to trace my moods as well as the discipline of doing what I ask clients to do.

    This is a valuable resource and thank you for creating and maintaining it.

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  85. I´m not sharing with a buddy...because...hmm. What are the true reasons? I could think of one or two friends to share my mood with. But - for me it would feel like burdening them with an obligation - and that might just be the straw that breaks the camels back; their back.
    As I am normally an optimistic and curious person I think I can cope alone with my moods. And what helps me most are Jon´s emails!
    Thank you so much!!!!

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  86. When I score really low or high I feel a need to explain that to my moodscope buddy. As I do so I explain to myself what is going on in black and white and am more able to accept it as just a status and then move on.

    The sending of the score (with or without explanation) gives an opportunity a few lines back from my buddy. It is a sort of automatic reach out for support. That is a good thing as I believe that many of us tend to go turn inwards and not reach out for support. But now we do and then we get help - in one way or the other. Our angels are standing by.

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  87. I have been using Moodscope for over a year to help me with a recurrence of depression. I have a chronic physical illness too ( non life-threatening) and it helps to see that the plunge, from above average to below, often corresponds with flares in my condition.

    I feel that having a buddy would affect my responses to the cards. I also find Jon's daily emails very supportive. The new version is very helpful in that I can re-visit my comments to see just what might have triggered a decline or rise in spirits. I like to take the test daily but am often out of range of the internet, cruising the inland waterways in France. I would love a version that I could use on my laptop and upload my scores when I have access.

    For me, a buddy is far less important than daily access to the new premier version. With support from my GP, antidepressant medication, and an understanding husband who recognises that he is not the best person to be my counsellor, Moodscope is part of my daily coping strategy.

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  88. I have always used 2 buddies. One my brother, who is a doctor, who occasionally comments. The other, a doctor friend who doesn't comment often.
     
    I realize this is possibly an arduous request, (well it would be for me). Having an extra email in every day. The buddies are both male. Maybe I need a female, but haven't accessed the right person yet.
     
    I haven't noticed anything, however, my brother has always had access, and my friend, most of the time. I am using the graph to enable me to come off a tablet. It forms part of the evidence.

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  89. I am a frequent user, and have no chosen buddies to share my mood charts. I do this simply for the fact that letting others get these "highs-and-lows" mood graph of ours daily isn't something I would like. It kind of is like the facebook news feed, albeit with one person. Receiving it daily makes the person care less and less, sort of.

    A moodscope buddy's job is to be aware of the quiz taker's feelings so when a particularly low score reaches her/his inbox, s/he is obliged to enquire. To which the person may or may not feel like answering. So why keep a mood-buddy then? It's a continuous cycle.

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  90. Moodscope has been really useful for me for several months now. At first I had no buddy, then I asked my partner if he would be my buddy. At first I found it quite nice that he would know roughly how I felt, but after a short time I cancelled the emails to him as I felt such a drain on him and I felt very exposed by someone knowing my score, rather than comforted by it. I think this actually caused my score to be lower for a while as I was worried about worrying him or concerned about how negative I might appear. As soon as I took him off my buddy list I felt better!

    I also really like the daily eails from Jon, I beleive these are more helpful and make a point of reading them as there is always a pearl of wisdom from someone who understands. Thank you!

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  91. I share my scores with my wife as I find it hard to talk about how I really feel. The scores do the talking and enable her to correlate how I feel with what else is going on in our lives. These correlations are things I tend to miss - especially while I am down.

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  92. I've found Moodscape really useful in finding out what influences my moods. I am bipolar and after 20 years on lithium I'm managing without any meds. Don't worry, I came off it slowly, under medical supervision!

    I use Moodscape as a sort of diary of how I am feeling. Looking back I can see what really pushed my mood down and oddly it's not always the major things that you'd imagine. In my case depression is brought on more by physical health problems - I am a CFS sufferer.

    When I came off lithium I found it hard to assess how I was feeling but your graph has been invaluable to me. It's confusing and the danger is to watch yourself way too closely all the time, which is fatal!

    Personally I wouldn't share with a buddy. It's a shame but I don't trust anyone enough to give them such intimate information. This might be a sign of a depressive personality... rofpsl!

    Anyhow I've found Moodscape really useful and enjoy your emails too. x

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  93. Knowing someone else was accessing my moods would make me choose the cards differently. This is an intensely personal thing, and where I can be completely honest with myself. I wouldn't want to burden anyone else with my ups and downs. I find Moodscope very helpful, reassuring, a daily reminder that I am in charge. The little pearls of wisdom from Jon are a friendly boost in my day, I enjoy his writing style very much.
    If I have one gripe, it is the little reprimand I get if I miss a day or two. I do my best to complete a daily score, but it is not always possible. It's only a tiny nit pick though. I love the new features and will happily subscribe later in the month. Thank you

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  94. I have one buddy - but often feel I am bothering her with my score (I try to do it daily - but slacked a bit for a few weeks recently...ooops!). I often find that sometimes I want to "untick" her for that day - not because I don't want her to see as such, just that when I have a run of good days I feel fine and that's ok. When I begin to dip, then I could let her know. Does that make sense?...a sort of "opt-out" that we could control but reinstate on a daily basis.

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  95. I started as a buddy to a family member who had a tendency to get depressed. Merely out of interest I started to do my own moodscope. I find it is a useful indicator for my own buddy, without my having to say that all is not right in my life - which I probably wouldn't do.

    Like the daily reminders Jon.

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  96. Moodscope has been a wonderful help to me,especially looking back over 120 days to spot recurring reasons for extreme scores.I feel friends are too busy and also do not believe I need help as I am often very 'bouncy'!I just try to hide away if I am depressed. My husband can see my comments because our computers are linked but this has helped as it has made him think about cause and effect and he realises I am not making my feelings up! I would welcome a voluntary buddy from this web site, may be matched for age and also female.I too love the emails as they are excellent reminders of what we all know we should have at the front of our minds but loose sight of when depressed. Thank you for Moodscope.

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  97. I have my mother as my buddy. It was her suggestion that I start using Moodscope in the first place. I'm not very good at telling people how I feel anyway, and once I moved away to University, she knew there was a high chance I would still keep things bottled up, even when I needed her most so far away from home! So Moodscope is an "easy" way of letting her know if I've had an up day or a down day, without her having the constant need to text/ring/email me to make sure I'm okay. If I receive a low score, she knows that I might need her comfort, without me having to tell her how I feel, or her having to ask me. I like the fact that she receives my score, because it is another way in which I can connect with her, even though she is so far away physically!!

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  98. I think Moodscope is a brilliant concept although I have problems with some of the words (e.g. proud, ashamed) which I can't connect with. And there are other words I would like to see in their place. But this is entirely personal.

    I did have a buddy for a while, a close friend who also suffers from BPD but I found we were trying to play therapist with each other so the sharing didn't really work. I felt giving her the results of my charts solicited criticism - she may well have felt the same as she stopped too.

    I don't use the charts any more as I found externalising the extremes of mood too alarming. I guess I'm in denial. I'd rather kid myself I'm managing OK (I don't think the outside world has any idea what I'm having to cope with internally, and I'd rather keep it that way). But what I do find immensely helpful is Jon's daily homily: it's always wise and insightful and I think should be made into a book!

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  99. Hi Jon,
    Firstly, I want to thank you for enabling those of us who can't afford to pay a monthly subscription, to continue using this fantastic site. It has helped me enormously over the past few months since being diagnosed with cancer. Yesterday I was able to discuss my mood chart with my Pychiatrist. He'd not heard of Moodscope and was interested to hear how it worked. When he asked if I'd found strategies to manage difficult periods. To help pick up my mood. I was able to give him examples as well and explained I was able to look back at my writen entries and analyse the graph.

    The involvement of a Psychiatrist is new to me. I don't imagine I will be linking him as a Buddy either - it's not serious enough to take that route. I have a caring husband, some good friends and family but I don't feel anyone I know would be a suitable Buddy. I don't think they would have the time, interest or want the commitment of regularly viewing and checking how things are with me.

    I use it to monitor myself. To help me learn how I cope best - and it has helped me to do that. I can't see this changing. I wish I had the money to subscribe to the additional bits, but I still get a lot out of what I can continue to access. So I'll be happy with that.

    Thank you Jon and all those who help.

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  100. I don't share my scores at the moment, although I would be happy to with some friends.

    My partner used to read my mood scores on a different site I used and I found it made me more reluctant to rate a low score incase he panicked and worried I was depressed and suicidal again. He has a tendency to over react and become paranoid and overprotective if I am unwell, which I find suffocating and frustrating.

    I don't know if he reads my moodscope scores. He probably could if he wanted to as he knows my passwords and has no doubt seen the reminder email on my phone or screen, but I hope he doesn't. I'm glad I don't know either way though as it means I can just give the honest answer.

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  101. I found the graph very useful in finally getting a proper diagnosis (cyclothymia)and it is v. useful to self-monitor and identify triggers. Don't want a buddy as I don't want to focus on mental-health/ mood in any of my relationships. My closer friends and family know and generally seem to 'get it'. Find the emails v. helpful, some real gems of advice in there, taking the time out on a daily basis to think about where I'm at moodwise is v. useful, and viewing the graph is helpful, although I can mood-swing drastically over the course of the day, or not, so it has its limits. Comments under the graph generally assume higher is better, when less extreme up-down scoring is healthier for me, so I have to tune that advice out.
    I think that my mood swings have improved after significant life-changes and becoming more aware of triggers, but would love to see the evidence by comparing with the same month a year ago - my screen can't read the graph over that long a time-frame. But all in all very, very helpful - thank you!

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  102. Re. above - I see that the improvement to the graph (viewing over a year) is in the moodscope plus.

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  103. I would love to share my scores with my psychiatric nurse, but do not want to bother a busy person with daily emails. Surely a weekly summary could be sent instead?

    I think Moodscope would be a great tool for our health professionals (eg psychiatrist, GP) to access with our consent. If I could send one summary email to my psychiatrist before our 4 monthly review appointment I would.

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  104. I have a buddy, and it saves me from having to tell them how I'm feeling, as most of the time I'd just say 'fine'. She checks up on me when I'm feeling really low, and I must say I do answer as honestly as possible, and having a buddy doesn't affect how I answer. Sharing the scores has really helped me. Thanks so much.

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  105. My sister and I have each other as buddies. We only see each other in person a few times a year due to distance, but talk often online. I found that the buddy email is a very good conversation starter -- it's hard for me to message someone and say out of the blue 'I've had a bad day' but if one of us gets the auto-email with a suddenly low score we can ask 'what happened, is there anything I can do.' It's also nice because she can see the progression and know that sometimes a 60% day is a real accomplishment, whereas to an outsider it might seem that I'm doing poorly.

    I think it's key for me to have a buddy who also has mood issues and uses the site. I'm sure that's not true for everyone but personally I would rather have a stranger from moodscope as a buddy than share with my mom, partner, or best friend -- they are all wonderful people and provide me support in many many important ways, but someone who deals with depression and anxiety is the best buddy for me.

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  106. I started using moodscope about a year ago with my husband as my buddy about 2 months later. It has made no difference to my mood scores. Indeed I think it may influence my score to be better than it should be as I don't want to worry him.
    I don't want my friends to know how I am and would not nominate any other family member.
    I would welcome having a buddy from the moodscope members, an anonymous one.What a great idea.
    Thank you for all your support. This together with some CBT sessions have helped me enormously. Moodscope helps me to carry on on a daily basis now that the CBT has ended.

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  107. I was recommended Moodscope by my therapist,who did not want to be my buddy, but suggested my closest female friend and my husband. So they have both been buddies since day one.I am bi-polar with a long (2.5year) cycle. With the agreement of my GP I am attempting to manage my health without medication. Having buddies does affect my scores in that I know they will be concerned if I go above 85% for more than two days running (I am in a "up" at present, that could develop into mania if not managed carefully), so I make sure that I am really scrupulous about the recording and possibly record 2s when I might otherwise blithely put down 3s. As I have not had a period of depression since starting Moodscope nearly a year ago (glory hallelujah!) I am not sure how that will go - I suspect I might not record the scores as I won't have enough energy. However, by carefully managing the high, my therapist and I hope the following low will be manageable too. My buddies notice if I haven't recorded a score for a few days and comment. I get concerned emails if my scores are too high or very low. The best bit has been that my husband has noticed that there is a distinct correlation between the amount of work I am putting into my business and how good I feel. He has at last accepted that I would not feel better if I gave up my job and was a stay-at-home mum. I don't feel that my buddies are being over-loaded: for them it's just like having a thermometer on the wall to let you know accurately what the temperature is if you're feeling a bit hot or cold.

    Buddies are great, but Moodscope would work magnificently without them. My high scores at present remind me to make sure I get enough sleep, eat properly and don't do too much, thus exhausting myself and bringing on the low. When I get a low score then I am easy on myself that day and don't beat myself up too much. Like many others above - thank you Jon for your wonderful daily reminders: they are heart-warming and life-affirming and always make me feel good. You have done a great thing here and probably deserve sainthood.

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  108. I 'joined' Moodscope after listening to Midweek with Libby P because two traumatic events had happened in my life; my wonderful 18 year old special-needs son for whom I have cared unstintingly was given a terminal prognosis; and at the same time my partner of serveral decades (and our son's father) announced his relationship with me was over because he had fallen in love with somebody who could give him all he needed (with a young female work colleague whom he had been mentoring).
    I illogically thought that if Libby could be so up-beat after the suicide of her caring and sensitive son then any straws like that were worth clutching.
    I suggested to my partner (he never married me - he told me I was not good enough) that we buddy each other to help each other get through the death that was to come - nothing, no response from him, not a word. Then it came - I was the sick, needy individual that had dragged him down I was told. He needed no help.
    I have continued with Moodscope like a drowning person clutching to flotsam. I could not burden my friends because they have lives to live, my family think I am a fool, so I ask the therapist that I have been seeing. But we never discuss Moodscope and I feel the entertainment value of scores has faded.
    Our son died a month ago. His father stood up at the funeral and gave a eulogy - a wonderful, eloquent, eulogy that provided not a modicum of emotional support for me - but made others observe 'what a nice man'.
    Me, I keep talking to Moodscope - maybe it's like crying across the valley, into the wind and inky dark darkness at night. Bits of the pain and sadness are casted way - the rough edges - but the boulders that obstruct my way remain. And something I think it would be nice to hear other than the echo of my sadness come back to me.
    And if you were wondering - probably not and it probably isn't hard to guess - my Moodscope score is asymptotically grinding its way along the bottom of the graph, unmodified by anything the wind has had to say.

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  109. I have been sharing my graph as a photo on my Facebook most days from 6th January 2012 with 9 of my Facebook friends that know about my bipolar. I was mostly stable when I started (last mania November 2012), I am still doing mostly ok and getting more stable as time passes. I do try harder to keep my moods stable now that some people can see my graph. Some of my friends have been assuming negatively about my moods when I am doing ok. Now they can see I am doing ok from my graph. I am not sure how many look at it or what will happen if things turn bad again but I know moodscope is helping me and I want people to see that and not assume negatively when I am doing ok.

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  110. I started using Moodscope after hearing about it on Midweek. My husband is my buddy but has never emailed a comment so I don't know if it would make a difference.
    I do look forward to reading what Jon has to say, thank you Jon. Usually his homilies make me feel better. I generally know why I have had a low score but it is interesting to look back at the peaks and troughs of the graph.
    I have mentioned Moodscope to several people but have not heard whether they use it and have not been asked to buddy.
    I nearly got my daughter on it and received one email as a buddy but then I was removed or she stopped doing it.
    I will be visiting her soon and will talk about it when I am with her.
    It is useful to see what prompts a high score and I will build on this when I am back from holiday. Ah yes holiday - excited? extremely! That will put the score up today.
    Thank you Jon.

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  111. Like many others, I've not yet chosen to add a buddy or buddies. My friends are a wonderful support and I rely greatly on being able to talk to / with them. But they inevitably come with their own perspectives and Moodscope feels like me figuring out things for myself, with Jon and his invaluable daily remarks somehow the provision of a safe place for me to be doing so. I share the view of not wanting to burden my friends with the task or sense of responsibility for my mood. thank you all - it's also good to read people's comments here - adds a stronger feeling of a live network of people keen to support one another, albeit anonymous. I'm another fan!

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  112. I shared with my wife but her view was my Moodscope score was not reflecting her view of the reality of 'how I actually was'. Maybe I score in line with 'internal solidity' and she with 'pleasantness and smiles and fun to others'. Or maybe I'm fooling myself with my score...

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  113. Hi Jon,

    I have three buddies, and they all have different functions and or reasons for being my buddies

    My boss is most likely to comment and if I score under a threshold she checks up on me, in part because my generalised anxiety disorder can make work a bit challenging, but also because I am a good 'canary' for things about to go pear shaped in our workplace.

    My big sis is next most likely to comment. She also uses Moodscope and she understands that our family struggle with mood disorders, and so she will comment on variance over time.

    My beloved is least likely to comment, but he is struggling with his own dark demons at the moment - so I am also his buddy. We find it useful to have a categorical measure of our respective well-being. It helps us both discuss the difficult stuff and to remember to tread carefully when the other is particularly vulnerable.

    Do this sharing change my scores? Probably not but each of them holds me to account for my scores in different ways and will explore them with me as they see fit.

    I hope this helps with the research...

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  114. I think there are 3 reasons that stick out for me why sharing my moodscope with buddies makes sense.
    1. It builds relationship
    2. Discussion with my buddy about my scores are very insightful i.e. she notes the direct co-relation of my mood to my travel. I.e. when I'm closer to nature, she's observed I'm generally much happier. It means they see things you don't and can bring to your attention macro trends that you would otherwise be oblivious too. I guess the best way to describe this is there are lots of 'a hahhh' moments due to her insight which you then internalize and make shifts in your life to ensure more happiness.
    3.Finally, and perhaps most interesting for me is it's a daily monitoring, that's really useful.My buddy makes me confront the issues that cause me stress in my life immediately, I hate it sometimes but it's really helping me keep happy to clear my plate regularly and that's what its all about.

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  115. I had two buddies and then removed them which I actually prefer as I sometimes had low scores if I took the test late at night when I was simply tired. I also felt guilty if I had a low score and that the buddy would be obliged to contact me and in fact it was simply tiredness. No, I found the sharing to be actually a bit invasive (which I didn't expect) as they were both good friends. I must feel that my moods are quite a private thing which I choose to share or not (because you don't know what score you will get when taking the test so there is little choice involved).
    I always read your emails Jon whether or not I take the test and find them very helpful. Moodscope has been a real learning experience for me (Know Thyself). It is very useful to look back. I also like the new word clouds. I have been using Moodscope since you were featured on Midweek with Libby Purves. Thank you.

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  116. I have two buddies, both old friends who know me well. The big step was deciding to have a buddy and this made me realise that this was a big problem for me. After nursing for 45 years and starting at a time when the stiff upper lip was how you coped I would nearly always say "I'm O.K" and somehow saw it as a weakness not to be O.K.

    One of my buddies is a male nurse that I worked with for 10 years looking after dying cancer patients in their homes and he always knew when I was not OK. We went through some very difficult situations together, cried and laughed together. So him becoming a buddy was not such a big step.

    The other buddy was different. She is a good friend but thought I had no problems and was always cheerful so talking to her was more difficult but it has made our relationship stronger and now I have no problem in telling people that I do suffer from depression and it is strange how many of them now tell me they have depression.

    I hope these ramblings! are of some use.

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  117. The 'Moodscopers teaming up as buddies' appeals to me.
     
    My daughters and a few friends have been getting my scores up to now (which have been dragging along the bottom for a few months now), and I've been thinking of taking them off the 'buddies' list. There are only so many times you can tell people (family included) that you're feeling low, and for that to illicit something positive.

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  118. I started using Moodscope after hearing about it on radio 4 last year. I have not been a regular test taker and may well have dropped it altogether without the daily email from Jon. In consideration of his time putting out these unfailing supportive messages I could never delete without reading and I have been drawn to begin taking the test more regularly recently entirely as a result of this daily effort. I am so grateful Jon, I really do have issues but try so hard to ignore them. This is just stupid, I know it but today, I felt a small surge of optimism that I might just be able to take control and avoid sliding further into no man's land having taken an interest in my own scores for the first time and realising that you have given me a self help tool. I am a very private person and would only consider an anonymous buddy, possibly, maybe, but never anyone I know, love or work with as that would reveal all that I work so hard to hide. So a fellow Moodscoper would work for me. Moodscope is an inspired and deceptively simple concept that is clearly bringing so much to an ever growing audience. Thank you is not a big enough word but it is all I have.

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  119. I prefer a wider, more anonymous community like MoodPanda.com provides. I can be more open

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  120. I have been Buddy to a friend since she started using Moodscope last October. It has been useful to be able to keep tabs on her feelings but also, as she has found, disheartening as her score has been consistently around the 25 mark, only once rising above 30. She has now decided to give up on taking the test as it just reinforces her feelings of general greyness and sometimes despair. I have encouraged her to do a test if she ever feels slightly more positive , just so there is a record of it.
    At least she is responding to my emails and attempting to highlight any positive experiences.
    I should like to know if anyone else has experienced this unfortunate and unexpected effect.

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    1. I have never scored above 24, my lowest point was 7. It's not that I go around really gloomy I use a coping system called masking so I don't make everyone around me feel miserable. I don't feel anywhere near as bad as I did a couple of years ago, most of the time I just feel nothing. Not happy, not sad - just cope from one day to next and make the most of good days. I suffer with chronic pain syndrome due to widespread arthritis which I started with at 35, plus a couple of accidents made things worse. Some of the comments don't help when they say 'get up and do something', I just think I wish!

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  121. I picked my sister as my buddy because she has been very interested in my wellbeing and very supportive of me as I foray through the world of bipolar. Just the fact that she accepted being my buddy was uplifting to me. I share with her what goes on with me and my observations, but sometimes she e-mails me when I suddenly dip so she can let me know she supports me. And because of her supportive letter, I look at myself a little more and then I tell her what's going on.

    I don't know that it actually has much effect on the ups and downs themselves, but it sure helps with the coping part. She's helped me see what transpired when I went from one medicine regimen to another. She and I both see this as a good tool to get me an overall view of myself, incorporating the many aspects involved that I couldn't possibly quantify into a single score myself.

    And the personal, daily messages really help a lot, too. It is extremely supportive to know there are people who have been there and who care.

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  122. i don't know who to pick as a buddy. i don't want to put extra charge on somebody even if i know they care about me. maybe i can ask a friend who also struggles with some "crazy" stuff so i guess he can understand why i want to do this ? i am afraid other people won't understand what's the matter with this thing. also maybe some virtual buddy would be better than nothing ?

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  123. I first used Moodscope on my own. Then I became aware of the sharing option. After a while, I asked my 2 brothers to be my buddies; one accepted, the other didn't respond. Then some trust issues arose between us and I became increasingly concerned that what I was sharing was changing his perception and attitude towards me so I stopped using Moodscope regularly. Then I removed him as a buddy thinking this would make me use it more. In fact, that hasn't happened, probably because I can have significant mood swings in the course of a day, so my morning score will be different from other times of the day.

    Must add that I LOVE THE EMAIL

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  124. I agree with Anonymous Sept.23rd.3.02pm because I also would not like to 'put on someone and spoil their day' but would like a buddy who really had some understanding. I have a wonderful husband who has no idea why I am so keen on Moodscope ,which he reads as Moonscope!! He is not in the least bit curious and has never read my comments although he could. Perhaps Anon and I should be cyber buddies?I do feel that that is what is missing for me in this brilliant set up called Moodscope.

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  125. I haven't tracked my scores for a long time, started again today. After seeing this, and how many of us hide our true selves, I have decided to try having a buddy for the first time. She is a trusted friend whom I have known for 8 years (we have never actually met!). I don't feel I am burdening her because (a) she has control of when she gets involved and (b) I trust her to tell me if it wasn't working for her. Will be interested myself in if and how having a buddy makes a difference. P.s. many people have shared with a partner and it hasn't been successful.......I wonder if trusting someone more neutral would work. Sometimes we get a more balanced and honest opinion from someone we know less well. Just a thought. Keep going everyone x.

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  126. What do I do as Christmas looms yet again, and once again my husband is unable to reconcile his differences with my Mother, Father or sister? Either I spend Christmas day with his family ( yet again!) and make do with seeing my own family either Christmas Eve or Boxing Day, when he's off to football. Or do dare I stand up to him and say, OK this year may be the last chance to see my 80 yr old Mother on Christmas day as she has cancer, so you invite your Mother, brothers, children and grand-daughter over for lunch, but I'll be at my Mum's this year.
    His problem is over things said years ago to which he took offence, and refuses to even acknowledge those members of my family, let alone forgive them!
    He has nightmares every night, and I try to help him see that holding all this bitterness and resentment in his heart is doing HIM far more ill than those members of my family. He lives with high blood pressure, says I'm difficult to live with due to my bi-polar condition, and that he's had enough!
    God only knows what the outcome of this dilemma will be, and I just hope and pray that some good may come eventually...I have been waiting ( not always patiently!) for 11 years!!!!!

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  127. How about deciding very very quietly to be wih your mum.
    And just telling him very very calmly that's the way it will be this year.
    If he tries to provoke/blame/accuse etc. etc. just meet it all with a friendly silence.
    And repeat gently you would like to be with her this last time.
    Good luck. Stick up for yourself a bit here . . . it will do you good and your mother will really really appreciate it I am sure.
    x C

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    Replies
    1. My answer is in this post - and the post in itself is also another answer:
      http://moodscope.blogspot.com.br/2013/11/mood-managing.html

      Silvia A

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  128. AnonymousMay 08, 2014 6:39 pm

    My answer is in this post - and the post in itself is also another answer:
    http://moodscope.blogspot.com.br/2013/11/mood-managing.html

    Silvia A

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