Joanne McPortland on the Call to Self-Destruction

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I don’t think I’ve ever seen a spring quite like this. It’s not unusual for depression to come in cycles, and for it to hit harder as we emerge from winter. But this season, everywhere I look, I see people more people crushed under this burden than I ever recall seeing before. Are we just [Read More...]

Trigger Warnings Are Offensive

Rembrandt, Rape of Prosperina

Elizabeth Scalia directed me to a story about Columbia University students who are offended by Ovid’s The Metamorphoses, because Generation Participation Trophy never gets tired of tryIng to slap a bike helmet and elbow pads on civilization. The poor little snowflakes are claiming that ancient classics like Ovid’s retelling of The Rape of Persephone triggered a rape [Read More...]

Mental Healing and the Psalms

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There are many ways through the dark valleys of depression, and prayer must be one of them. The problem is that the depressive often cannot even stir to perform regular prayer. Simple tasks become a burden. Prayer routines fall by the wayside. Commitments are left undone. And with each little failure, the walls close in [Read More...]

The Cold Reboot of the Soul

depression

I sometimes hold it half a sin To put in words the grief I feel; For words, like Nature, half reveal And half conceal the Soul within. –Tennyson– My brain is a treacherous organ. I’ve made my living from it for almost a quarter century, yet it has a defect that makes this hard sometimes. [Read More...]

Ophelia’s Funeral: Suicide and The Church

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Editors’ Note: This article is part of the Public Square 2014 Summer Series: Conversations on Religious Trends. Read other perspectives from the Patheos community here. In 1915, my great grand-aunt Emma Annie Rabig died at the age of 24. I have a copy of her death certificate. Next to “Cause of death” is written “Body viewed.” Nothing more. There’s a [Read More...]

Mental Illness and the Notion of “Choice”

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In the wake of the shocking death of Robin Williams, there’s been a lot about depression and suicide in the news and social media, some of it very good, much of it sheer nonsense. I don’t think we’ve ever had a national moment quite like this, in which a beloved entertainer, known for making people laugh, [Read More...]

Michael Lichens on Depression

When I write about mental health issues and depression, I tend to do so obliquely, so I know how difficult it is for Michael Lichens, Editor of Catholic Exchange, to write about it as well as he does. An excerpt I wanted to point out that depression touches many lives, whether we know it or not. [Read More...]

Sadness Is Not Depression

depression

I awoke today with a deep sadness. My beloved dog, after a brief and terrible illness, died yesterday. Before the morning fog cleared from my head, I was waiting for her to stand, stretch, and put her front paws on the bedside, as she did every day. And she wasn’t there. One day I hope [Read More...]


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