Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

One Life Saved, One Not

Just when I think that Beyond Blue is just a bunch of yuppie whining, and the real problems of the world are found in the poverty-stricken corners of Somalia, not in the air-conditioned, spacious family rooms of middle- and upper-class America, I get a reminder from God to keep on talking about the harrowing sadness and the lonely exile of depression.

Because people are dying right here.

Just today, my former religion teacher, the one who turned me around in high school and helped me start on my path to recovery, told me that a good friend of hers took his life. She closed her e-mail with this: “I am so grateful you are on the other side of depression….I realize how powerful the illness can be.”


And then fellow blogger Susan Schechter wrote an amazing post today about a life she saved two years ago on a suicide hotline. She writes:

I was on the phone one night- around twilight- with a very very suicidal man- who not only had a gun in his hand and was clicking the chambers, but he was very very very drunk.

I spent a long time talking to him, and when the call was over I went out in the pitch black night, no stars, overcast clouds blocking them. I bummed a cigarette, and a lighter, sat down on a bench and cried.

Fast forward to present day. I got a phone call from my former supervisor, and made a commitment to start again on the hotline in the fall, after completing 35 hours of class work this summer. Then she said she got a letter from someone I talked to eons ago, and wanted to mail it to me.


The letter arrived Monday. It had beautiful penmanship, but poor spelling. It went in kind, “thank you for helping me save my life that night, and the few things you have taught me have saved me again when life got that bad. Fortunately, it never got that bad again. I am working now, joined a church and dating a lovely woman.

I wrote this poem for you. I hope you like it and again, thank you.

“There is a rose in the garden
A Beauty with thorns adminst her leaves
If one desires to pick her
He must ask his hands to bleed”

To read more Beyond Blue, go to, and to get to Group Beyond Blue, a support group at Beliefnet Community, click here.


To subscribe to “Beyond Blue” click here.


  • Your Name

    Please tell your religion teacher that, the other side of depression is not death. The other side of depression is to live, to love and to laugh.Death is not the solution, death is the way to go to God and God wants happy people around. Never, whoever reads this thinks to fight depression with death. Lets fight it with less conditionalisms more love and kindness, more HEART.

  • Mike

    I know Therese will be the one to truly straighten this out, but I think you misunderstood the religion teacher. It seems to me that she’s speaking to Therese about THERESE being on the other side; not the friend who committed suicide. I understand her to mean “the other side” as being on the other side of the deep, dark pit of being in major depression and on the road to recovery. I’m on “the other side” as well, slowly recovering and slowly regaining the joy of the life God has given to me. Yes, death is not being on the other side of depression; return to LIFE is being on the other side.

  • Margaret

    Thanks for this post Therese. Powerful.
    I too have had the privilege of talking someone through their darkest hour. I’m Thankful that the Lord guided me with the right words and the right times to listen.

Previous Posts

Seven Ways to Get Over an Infatuation
“Bewitched, bothered, and bewildered am I” wrote US songwriter Lorenz Hart about the feeling of infatuation. It’s blissful and euphoric, as we all know. But it’s also addicting, messy and blinding. Without careful monitoring, its wild ...

posted 12:46:43pm Feb. 19, 2014 | read full post »

When Faith Turns Neurotic
When does reciting scripture become a symptom of neurosis? Or praying the rosary an unhealthy compulsion? Not until I had the Book of Psalms practically memorized as a young girl did I learn that words and acts of faith can morph into desperate ...

posted 10:37:13am Jan. 14, 2014 | read full post »

How to Handle Negative People
One of my mom’s best pieces of advice: “Hang with the winners.” This holds true in support groups (stick with the people who have the most sobriety), in college (find the peeps with good study habits), and in your workplace (stay away from ...

posted 10:32:10am Jan. 14, 2014 | read full post »

8 Coping Strategies for the Holidays
For people prone to depression and anxiety – i.e. human beings – the holidays invite countless possibility to get sucked into negative and catastrophic thinking. You take the basic stressed-out individual and you increase her to-do list by a ...

posted 9:30:12am Nov. 21, 2013 | read full post »

Can I Say I’m a Son or Daughter of Christ and Suffer From Depression?
In 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, we read: “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” What if we aren’t glad, we aren’t capable of rejoicing, and even prayer ...

posted 10:56:04am Oct. 29, 2013 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.