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Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

Depression Archives

Suicide and Eternal Damnation: Who Is Going to Hell?

posted by Beyond Blue

Group Beyond Blue member SurvivorForce started a discussion thread called “Are we damned if we commit suicide?” at Group Beyond Blue on Beliefnet’s Community. He wrote:   I have heard that some believe suicide is unforgivable, and that God will […]

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Group Beyond Blue: Letter to a Suicidal Person From a Survivor

posted by Beyond Blue

Group Beyond Blue member Rose S. posted a beautiful reflection on Group Beyond Blue called “Letter to a suicidal person from a survivor”: Dear friend, I am writing this to you both as the survivor of an attempted suicide and […]

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Yoga Can Relieve Anxiety and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

According to The Johns Hopkins Winter 2008 Issue of Depression and Anxiety Bulletin: Low levels of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) have been associated with depression and particularly anxiety, and antidepressants have been shown to increase GABA levels. Now, preliminary […]

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12 Bricks of a Strong Mental Foundation

posted by Beyond Blue

I was reading “The No-Cry Discipline Solution” last night (because I’d like to discipline without the tears and tantrums!), as recommended by my psychiatrist, and found author Elizabeth Pantley’s points for building a strong parental foundation to be ones that […]

Who’s to Blame?

posted by Beyond Blue

Because I’m on vacation this week, I’ve decided to publish posts from the two-week test pilot of Beyond Blue back in October of 2006, two months before its initial launch in December 2006. We’ve come a long way! Just before […]

If You Compare, You’ll Despair

posted by Beyond Blue

Because I’m on vacation this week, I’ve decided to publish posts from the two-week test pilot of Beyond Blue back in October of 2006, two months before its initial launch in December 2006. We’ve come a long way!  I know […]

Bedtime Therapy, I Mean Stories

posted by Beyond Blue

Because I’m on vacation this week, I’ve decided to publish posts from the two-week test pilot of Beyond Blue back in October of 2006, two months before its initial launch in December 2006. We’ve come a long way! My daughter’s […]

Why Beyond Blue?

posted by Beyond Blue

Because I’m on vacation this week, I’ve decided to publish posts from the two-week test pilot of Beyond Blue back in October of 2006, two months before its initial launch in December 2006. We’ve come a long way! Some people […]

My Story (So Far)

posted by Beyond Blue

Because I’m on vacation this week, I’ve decided to publish posts from the two-week test pilot of Beyond Blue back in October of 2006, two months before its initial launch in December 2006. We’ve come a long way! Although I’ve […]

The Serotonin Spirituality Connection

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to my editor, Holly, for finding this fascinating study about serotonin and spirituality. I’ve argued in many places that I swear we depressives are more religious. It turns out that high image brain scans are documenting a biological underpinning […]

Simi on Self-Esteem

posted by Beyond Blue

I was moved by the comment made by Beyond Blue reader Simi on the combox of my post “Video: My Self-Esteem File.” I was happy to see this site. I am a therapist myself, and I also suffer from depression. […]

Bipolar Disorder: A Kind of Learning Disability

posted by Beyond Blue

I have a learning disability called bipolar disorder. My thought process is severely distorted at times, making me believe that the plastic spider in front of me is real, and if I don’t exert all my energy into swatting it, […]

Dick Cavett: Smiling Through

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to Beyond Blue reader Larry Parker for forwarding to me Dick Cavett’s blog post on depression. It’s marvelous. I’ve excerpted a few paragraphs below. To read the entire article, click here. I thought it was interesting that he mentions […]

The Challenge of Living Mindfully

posted by Beyond Blue

Macrina Wiederhehr explains how we can impart some of the wisdom of the monastic tradition into our workday in her book “Seven Sacred Pauses.” Among my favorite passages are these: How can we learn to open our hearts to simple […]

Why Solitude Is Sacred: In Peace and Quiet, We Find Our Truth

posted by Beyond Blue

Ironically, right as I’m trying to incorporate some solitude into my life, Beyond Blue reader Frank sent me this meditation of his on solitude. As I read it, it occurred to me that the experience of motherhood is much like […]

Storied Mind: You Are So Beautiful

posted by Beyond Blue

My blogging buddy John over at “Storied Mind” doesn’t need a glamour shot to be reminded that he is beautiful to God. I loved his reflection on this very topic, which you can get to by clicking here. There is […]

Dear God: Don’t Sweat It! I Got Ya Covered

posted by Beyond Blue

Dear God, In Matthew’s gospel (14:13-21) we read about the miracle of the loaves and fish: When Jesus heard what had happened [to John the Baptist’, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds […]

The Loaves and Fish in Barbara’s Life: God Is Never Fickle

posted by Beyond Blue

Interestingly enough, just as I was contemplating how God really does take care of you when you take care of yourself, I received this note from Beyond Blue Barbara: I am very happy. I’ve just been told that I have […]

Podcast: An Interview with Dr. J. Raymond DePaulo

posted by Beyond Blue

Click here for an interview on WYPR Maryland Morning of Dr. J. Raymond DePaulo, Jr., Chairman of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Johns Hopkins Medicine on the topic of “Prozac and Placebo” by radio host Sheilah Kast. […]

Group Beyond Blue: Anti-Depression Measures

posted by Beyond Blue

A very helpful discussion thread was started at Group Beyond Blue at Beliefnet Community by Group Beyond Blue member Desertsutra called “Anti-Depression Measures,” where people have listed what helps them keep going. Desertsutra begins: I know there are lots of […]

5 Steps to Problem Solving

posted by Beyond Blue

In Steven Curtis’s book “Understanding Your Child’s Puzzling Behavior,” he provides a table called “Steps to Understanding and Intervention” that I think can be applied to any problem we depressives encounter in our recovery. You can download the worksheets (described […]

Therapy Is Creative Problem Solving

posted by Beyond Blue

A friend recently asked me what, exactly, about counseling was so helpful to me. I thought for a minute and then said, “I go in there with a mess of problems. I’m entangled in them. I’m overwhelmed. I don’t see […]

Group Beyond Blue: Problem Solving

posted by Beyond Blue

I started a discussion thread at Group Beyond Blue at Beliefnet Community where we can tackle one of our problems and come up with creative solutions. Here is my post: As you’ll see in Thursday’s post, I’m trying to transform […]

Don’t Get Stuck on “Unstuck”: Depression Is Real, and Drugs Help Me

posted by Beyond Blue

I think I’m smarter today than I was two years ago. At that time had someone forwarded me Newsweek’s interview with James Gordon, founder of the Center for Mind-Body Medicine and author of “Unstuck: Your Guide to the Seven-Stage Journey […]

Peter D. Kramer: Prozac Nation?

posted by Beyond Blue

Another of his classic essays is the following, titled “Prozac Nation?” in which Kramer refutes the modern wave of thought that we are overmedicating our country, numbing America to every hiccup or discomfort, and doling out antidepressants where there is […]

Fantasizing Too Much? Plan a Positive Escape

posted by Beyond Blue

I’ve been feeling badly that I spend so much of my day fantasizing … about a place not covered in dirty laundry, and where sex is spontaneous (not scheduled), and backrubs and pillow talk come before and after. At this […]

I Hoped the Ocean Would Help You See

posted by Beyond Blue

I loved this story by Beyond Blue reader Melzoom on the combox of my post, “Dear God: Come All Who are Weary”: My second suicide attempt was not immediately severe enough to put me in the hospital. My husband came […]

Group Beyond Blue is Beliefnet’s Top Support Group!

posted by Beyond Blue

I just now got official word that Group Beyond Blue was the winner of Beliefnet’s Top Support Group contest. Yah! I continue to be amazed and delighted at the level of support and friendship and encouragement that is present on […]

Suicide: Premeditated Versus Impulsive

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to Beyond Blue reader Larry Parker for forwarding me the piece, “The Urge to End It All,” published in last Sunday’s New York Time magazine. It was quite timely for me because I spent the majority of my train […]

Group Beyond Blue: Concentrate on the “How” of Suicide, Versus the “Why”

posted by Beyond Blue

Group Beyond Blue member Larry Parker started a discussion thread about the New York Times piece on Group Beyond Blue at Beliefnet Community. There he writes: It’s a little disorienting at first reading ourselves discussed in the clinical (literally and […]

Recovery, Inc. and My Aunt GiGi

posted by Beyond Blue

In my video I mentioned Dr. Abraham Low’s organization, Recovery, Inc.  For those of you not familiar with Recovery, Inc., it is a somewhat old-fashioned but very effective mental health program for persons suffering from depression and other mood disorders. […]

Pray, Laugh, Breathe: Two Days of Healing

posted by Beyond Blue

I wanted to thank all my dear Beyond Blue readers for your care and concern after I published the video about my darker days. I really was mixed on whether or not to publish that. But I remembered my golden […]

Vote for Beliefnet’s Top Support Group

posted by Beyond Blue

Beliefnet has collected and discussed nominees for its Top Support Group contest. More than one member has told them that these groups sustain them, give them life, and get them through rough days. They also help people celebrate their best […]

Day 2: More of Your Stories

posted by Beyond Blue

There were so many amazing stories written on the thread “Your Story,” so I’m just publishing some of the first ones written there. Likes these from Group Beyond Blue members Luthitarian, iLiberty, and Lapatosu. To read more Beyond Blue, go […]

iLiberty: I Am Jane Doe

posted by Beyond Blue

I’ve never attempted suicide. I’ve never been hospitalized. I go to work nearly every day and support a large family. I’ve taken my meds regularly for the past 17 years without fail. I don’t forget. I can’t forget. The cost […]

Lapatosu: There Are No Villains

posted by Beyond Blue

I’ve survived the normal issues in an American woman’s life in the 80’s and 90’s. Raising 6 kids through the teenage years, father remarries, mother’s medical crisis’, death of stepmom, car wrecks, job changes, alcohol abuse on my part, with […]

Day 1: Your Stories

posted by Beyond Blue

I have been thinking lately about what it means to be a leader (manager, moderator, fill in the blank), and, like I described in my post yesterday, I think it requires getting out of the way as often as you […]

Melzoom: I Will Never Make Those Mistakes Again

posted by Beyond Blue

When my parents divorced, I was nine years old. My mother and I moved from a very remote area to suburban Detroit where she had grown up. We lived with my grandparents for a year before moving into our own […]

Jomaspan: Born Bipolar

posted by Beyond Blue

I’m one of those people who believe that you are born with bipolar disorder. When and how it manifests is based on experience, but the raw ingredients are in your DNA. When I look back on my childhood, I can […]

Mindful Meditation and Depression: Some Lotus Therapy

posted by Beyond Blue

Has your therapist recommended mindful meditation? If she hasn’t already, she very well might try to integrate it into your cognitive behavioral therapy by the time you graduate from counseling. The New York Times ran an interesting piece about the […]

Liberate Yourself From Your Fear of Happiness

posted by Beyond Blue

In “Happier: Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment” by Tal Ben-Shahar, Ph.D. (and thanks to my Guardian Angel Ann for sending me an autographed copy!): When we do not feel that we are worthy of happiness, we […]

Nancy: When Nothing Is Funny

posted by Beyond Blue

If you haven’t noticed already, I’m dedicating a lot of posts to the topic of humor lately. For two reasons: as I’ve said in so many posts, humor is central to my recovery, and second, to respond to those readers […]

Marya Hornbacher: How Do You Move Beyond Blue?

posted by Beyond Blue

For this week’s segment of my series, “How Do You Move Beyond Blue?” I thought I’d reprint the interview with the author Marya Hornbacher in the “Washington Post” by Post staff writer Rachel Beckman. You can get to the interview […]

Possessed and Then Released

posted by Beyond Blue

Here’s an excerpt from “Madness: A Bipolar Life”: by Marya Hornbacher Sometimes I just run as far and as hard as I can, until I can’t breathe, until my heart is about to explode, or until, stumbling drunk, I fall […]

Ann Omohundro: How Do You Move Beyond Blue?

posted by Beyond Blue

Ann Omohundro needs little introduction, as I speak so often of her on Beyond Blue. If you want a refresher on who she is, check out my video, “Meet Guardian Angel, Ann!” I wanted to share more of her life […]

Beliefnet’s Living with Depression Site

posted by Beyond Blue

? Beliefnet’s health editor (and my editor) Holly Rossi has pulled together an impressive and comprehensive site called “Living with Depression.” Today I’ll feature a few things from that page, which you can get to by clicking here. The first […]

How to Pray When You’re Depressed

posted by Beyond Blue

In her piece “How to Pray When You’re Depressed,” Kathryn Hermes, F.S.P. offers several ways to pray when you are depressed. To view the gallery, click here. It begins: When you’re depressed, you may discover that the shadows and tempests […]

Celebrity Depression and Their Lessons

posted by Beyond Blue

? Another feature on “Living with Depression” is my gallery of celebs who are battling depression and the spiritual lessons they afford us. To get to that gallery, click here. It begins: When it comes to depression, I search everywhere […]

Laughter as Mental Medicine

posted by Beyond Blue

The blog, “We Must Not Think Too Much,” is becoming one of my trusted sources of cool stories about depression and mental illness. I have no idea how she is able to scour all the sources she does. But she’s […]

Ovidia: How She Spent Her Nervous Breakdown

posted by Beyond Blue

While we’re on the topic of humor, go check out Ovidia’s post today on “How She Spent Her Nervous Breakdown.” You will get your much-needed daily chuckle. Click here to get there. To read more Beyond Blue, go to www.beliefnet.com/beyondblue, […]

Mothering When You Are Depressed

posted by Beyond Blue

As I sit down to write my Mother’s Day post, I am filled with both tears and goose bumps. Yesterday at the park I talked to a fellow preschool mom in length about her father, who left for a loaf […]

Group Beyond Blue: How Do You Fill the Hole in the Soul?

posted by Beyond Blue

Join the interesting discussion thread, “How Do You Fill the Hole in the Soul?” that I started a few days ago at Group Beyond Blue, which you can get to by clicking here. Lots of interesting suggestions are thrown out, […]

One Artist’s Way Out of (Mild) Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

In her classic book, “The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity,” Julia Cameron offers readers twelve ways to recover their sense of self or inner creativity. According to this artist, nurturing one’s creative powers is a spiritual exercise–and […]

Tears On Her Laptop: A Co-Worker’s Suicide

posted by Beyond Blue

Speaking of suffering and anger and confusion, I was incredibly moved by a post on a blog called “Old Lady’s Law Office and Kitchen Table” (to get to there click here) about a coworker’s death. Suicide. She asks the questions […]

Kay Redfield Jamison: Learning to Love Our Jagged Edges

posted by Beyond Blue

My absolute favorite essay on depression is a piece Kay Redfield Jamison wrote for NPR’s “This I Believe” collection of testimonies. It’s about learning to love our jagged edges. I believe that curiosity, wonder and passion are defining qualities of […]

Mr. Dooce, Stress, and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

While I don’t appreciate the nasty tone of many comments on my post about J.K. Rowling’s Suicidal Days, they have caused me to rethink my claim that divorce doesn’t CAUSE depression—even if it can TRIGGER it. Big whoop, you say: […]

The Mike Wallace Case Study

posted by Beyond Blue

As an example of the relationship between stress and depression, J. Raymond DePaulo, Jr., M.D. mentions the situation with CBS commentator Mike Wallace, when he was on trial for libel over a story he’d done. In “Understanding Depression,” DePaulo writes: […]

Nearly Half of Americans Suffer from a Mental Disorder at Some Point

posted by Beyond Blue

I was taken aback by these statistics that I just read in Johns Hopkins Depression and Anxiety Health Alert: that a quarter of all adults have symptoms of at least one mental disorder each year, and nearly half of all […]

Saturday: Self-Esteem Forum #4

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks again to Beyond Blue reader Larry Parker (Doxieman122 in the Community) who has taken over moderating the Self-Esteem Forums ever since my doctor told me I needed to start delegating. The following is his invitation: Group Beyond Blue will […]

The Murky Politics of Mind-Body: “Depression Is a Brain Disease” 101

posted by Beyond Blue

According to yesterday’s comprehensive article in the “New York Times” by Sarah Kershaw, this month the House has passed a bill that would require insurance companies to provide mental health insurance parity. HALLELUIA! HALLELUIA! HALLELUIA! Writes Kershaw: It was the […]

A Sudden Shift in Moods: Andrew Solomon and Cyclothymia

posted by Beyond Blue

I remember reading the following Washington Post article in December of 2005, when I was trying to figure out what in the heck was going on with me. It helped me to understand the nuances that exist within the family […]

Boundaries and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

I wanted to thank all of you for your supportive comments regarding my boundary struggle lately with work and family. It was helpful for me to see how many others are at the same place. Like Beyond Blue reader Lisa […]

Peter D. Kramer: How Do You Move Beyond Blue?

posted by Beyond Blue

I knew there was little chance of getting a personal interview with Peter D. Kramer, clinical professor of psychiatry at Brown University, and author of “Listening to Prozac” and “Against Depression,” among other books. So for my interview series, I […]

And the Oscar Goes To…Us

posted by Beyond Blue

If anyone deserves an Oscar for exceptional acting, it’s a depressive. My guardian angel, Ann, told me the other day that she has spent more than half of her life pretending to be a happy person. “People have no idea […]

Judith Warner: Overselling Overmedication

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to Beyond Blue readers Barbara (formerly known as “Babs”) and NYJLM (who writes her own blog, “So Love Is Hard and Love Is Tough” for forwarding me the link to Judith Warner’s opinion piece, “Overselling Overmedication” about the volumes […]

Why Sadness Can Blow Your Budget

posted by Beyond Blue

Here’s an interesting story about shopping and depression. To read the Associated Press article, click here. It begins: BOSTON, Massachusetts (AP) — If you’re sad and shopping, watch your wallet: A new study shows people’s spending judgment goes out the […]

Why the World Needs Diabetes, Cancer, and Dementia

posted by Beyond Blue

If I caught your attention with my title, good. That was the point. Because it was absurd (my title, I mean). Let’s celebrate AIDS! Breast Cancer! Dementia! Yeah! They are all ways of embracing our darker sides! Let’s create t-shirts […]

That’s Not BECAUSE OF Depression–That’s DESPITE Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Last week’s post on the Newsweek happiness article provoked many interesting comments. I especially liked this insightful one from Beyond Blue reader Mia: Such a great discussion here. And I really love the distinctions being made: “medicine” vs “drugs” and […]

Group Beyond Blue: A Buddy System?

posted by Beyond Blue

Last week I started a discussion thread at Group Beyond Blue (in Beliefnet’s Community) about possibly starting a buddy system within Beyond Blue so we have even more support than is offered through discussion threads, blog comments, and participation in […]

Newsweek’s Happiness Article: Heroic Melancholy???

posted by Beyond Blue

I’m sorry to report that I don’t have an interview today. But I DO have some fodder for a great discussion. Beliefnet’s Lilit Marcus directed me to Newsweek’s psychology story “Happiness: Enough Already” about the “anti-happiness” movement, or shall we […]

My Happiness Level: Dieting and Shopping at Plus-Sizes Boutiques

posted by Beyond Blue

I don’t want to cry “poor me” or anything. Lord help me if I sound like I’m WHINING. BUT all this talk about happiness levels reminded me of a post I wrote awhile back on jealousy. Yep. I admit. I […]

“Battered Beyond Blue” on The Splintered Mind

posted by Beyond Blue

My blogging buddy, Douglas Cootey, over at The Splintered Mind wrote the following sympathetic and thoughtful blog post after he, too, was reamed out regarding a Heath Ledger commentary. Interestingly enough, Douglas gets it from the other side–from those who […]

Acupuncture for Treating Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

I learned the following at healthyplace.com, a depression community, which was an interesting place you might want to check out. Regarding acupuncture: Two randomized, controlled, clinical trials suggest that electroacupuncture may reduce symptoms of depression as effectively as amitryptiline, a […]

Depression and Chronic Pain Stories

posted by Beyond Blue

Of course, for some of us, feeling sick is a chronic condition. I was overwhelmed by all the comments to my post “Chronic Pain and Depression: The Gift of Gab and God.” So many people are in so much pain. […]

Amy Grant on Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Awhile back, Beliefnet’s Dena Ross wrote a short piece on how Christian Music superstar Amy Grant deals with holiday depression. Now Dena offers a comprehensive interview with Amy regarding faith, family, and depression. To see the part of her video […]

What Does Holistic Mean?

posted by Beyond Blue

I loved this comment by Beyond Blue reader Leslie because she views “holistic health” as a system using any and all tools that can facilitate growth, recovery, and health of the body, mind, and spirit. Compassionate people like Leslie also […]

The Lesson About the Life Boat

posted by Beyond Blue

I want to thank all my Beyond Blue readers for responding with so much compassion and support to my post “My Holistic Approach to Depression.” As you can see, the reader pushed a pretty sensitive button by claiming that I […]

Group Beyond Blue: What Were You Like When You Were Young?

posted by Beyond Blue

I started a discussion thread at Group Beyond Blue at Beliefnet’s Community asking the question: what were you like when you were young? Because I’m curious as to how many others felt very depressed, even suicidal, as a kid.

Thank You, Beyond Blue Readers and Group Members!

posted by Beyond Blue

I don’t do this often enough, so let me try to make up for it now. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for caring about each other in the way that you do–offering each other your compassion, empathy, and support– […]

Group Beyond Blue: I’m a Newbie

posted by Beyond Blue

At Group Beyond Blue on Beliefnet’s Community site, Beyond Blue member Kylinda launched a discussion on being a newbie to the site. Here is what she said: I don’t feel like there’s anyone I can talk to without being a […]

Small Miracles at Christmas

posted by Beyond Blue

Speaking of Kay, I don’t know if I am the only one who caught this comment of hers of the message board of my post “Video: O Holy Night”: Merry christmas to you, Therese, and all BB readers and writers.? […]

Three Depression Memoirs Cast Light on British Epidemic

posted by Beyond Blue

Also from Lilit Marcus, this interesting article about three new novels that cast a new light on Britain’s hidden epidemic. Stephanie Merritt, who suffers from depression herself, writes a memoir for Random House (and this article) because she wants greater […]

Chronic Pain and Depression: The Gift of Gab and God

posted by Beyond Blue

A few years back the father of a woman I know shot himself because he couldn’t take his chronic pain anymore. This guy was a highly educated man–a doctor, actually—but, despite all his knowledge and connections, could not find anything […]

Depression Hurts–I Mean, Physically

posted by Beyond Blue

I recently read an interview with Dr. Paul McClelland, a psychiatrist at St. Agnes Hospital in Baltimore about the serious physical changes in the body and brain that can be a result of depression. These conditions or complications are among […]

Karen Swartz, M.D.: How Do You Move Beyond Blue?

posted by Beyond Blue

For today’s “How Do You Move Beyond Blue?” post, I have published a comprehensive update of some fascinating studies that will lead to more effective treatments for depression and other mood disorders. This valuable summary by Karen Swartz was printed […]

Cathy: On Light and Darkness

posted by Beyond Blue

I was touched by Cathy’s response to my “Dear God: Be My Light” post because it’s so honest and articulates beautifully what so many of us feel on those days we struggle: I should pull out my dusty Meister Eckhart […]

Linda-Marie: Hang In There

posted by Beyond Blue

And I was impressed by Linda-Marie’s response to Cathy, especially when she is at a vulnerable place herself. Thanks, Linda-Marie! Cathy, I have gone through periods like you are describing. I am doing my best not to descend into a […]

Larry’s 12 Days of Christmas

posted by Beyond Blue

To see Larry Parker start his own blog has been a highlight of 2007, as well. Actually, after reading his “12 Days of Christmas,” I’m a bit scared of the competition: Twelve months of celibacy Eleven lithium tablets Ten DBSA […]

Bambi’s Christmas Wish

posted by Beyond Blue

I was saddened by this message from Beyond Blue reader Bambi on the message board of “Blanche’s 12 Bipolar, Alcoholic Days of Christmas”: I am extreamly sad. I have a family I live with. I’m 51, my mother is 69, […]

Depression, Suffering, and Playing Your Cards Right

posted by Beyond Blue

After Beyond Blue reader Larry Parker read Zana’s comment, he provided the link to lyrics of Kenny Rogers’s, “The Gambler.” I’ve sung this song so many times (yeah, yeah, yeah, you’re thinking … “NO, GOD, DON’T SING IT FOR US” […]

Playing Your Cards and the Serenity Prayer

posted by Beyond Blue

Kenny Rogers’s refrain–You got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em/ Know when to walk away and know when to run–sounds an awful lot like the Serenity Prayer: God, Grant me the courage to accept the […]

Amy Grant on Battling Holiday Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Dena Ross wrote a great blog post about Christian music star’s Amy Grant’s depression. To get there, click here. Writes Dena: In her book, “Mosaic: Pieces of My Life So Far,” Christian music star Amy Grant talks about her battle […]

Dooce on Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

You all may know the ever-popular blogger, Dooce. I really loved her post on depression last Thursday, and based on the over 1,000 comments I’m thinking other people could relate, too! Here’s the first paragraph: I was recently at lunch […]

Giving Up the Addiction

posted by Beyond Blue

Although I couldn’t leave Tracy’s blog after I found it, the following post is my favorite, because I could so relate to the self-righteous (I’m RIGHT!) war that rages in her brain, especially when it comes to work performance. And […]

The Moms’ Disease

posted by Beyond Blue

You can find Tracy’s blog post called “The Moms’ Disease” by clicking here. I have excerpted from it below: It’s called Postpartum Depression, or PPD for those of us (too much) in the know. I’ve done a fair amount of […]

Larry Parker: How Do You Move Beyond Blue?

posted by Beyond Blue

If you’ve been reading Beyond Blue with any regularity, you know Larry Parker, because Larry is my most, um, vocal and frequent, commenter. He is extremely intelligent. Philosophical and sophisticated brains like his are the reason I kept my mouth […]

Perseverance Versus Steadfastness

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to Beyond Blue reader Becky P. who explained the difference between perseverance and steadfastness on the comment board of “Dear God: On Perseverance“: I had a really hard weekend and I’ve noticed those too well known symptoms of my […]

Perseverance: An Antidote to Perfectionism

posted by Beyond Blue

Two other comments got me thinking about how perseverance is really an antidote to the curse of perfectionism that poisons so many of us with creatively-formed brains (isn’t that a nice way of saying it?). On the comment board of […]

Some Words for the Desperate

posted by Beyond Blue

Back on my post “16 Ways Depression Is Like a Pumpkin,” Beyond Blue reader Kathy wrote this: I have been reading Beyond Blue for awhile. You may give hope to people with minimum to mild depression. But apparently you have […]

His Suicide Saved Me

posted by Beyond Blue

I wanted to share Beyond Blue reader Julia’s comment that she wrote on the message board of my post “Dear God: On Getting the Right View” for two reasons: I was taken aback by her beautiful articulation of what it’s […]

Depression: Life With No Filter

posted by Beyond Blue

Also intriguing was Beyond Blue reader Mary’s comment back on my post “Mother Teresa: My Saint of Darkness and Hope“: I remember once reading in an article that said that people who are depressed have a more realistic picture of […]

When the Reframing Gets Tiring

posted by Beyond Blue

I think this is my favorite blog post of Rita’s because it addresses that feeling we all encounter … “I’m so blessed … so why am I depressed?” (Hey, that rhymes! blessed and depressed … cool!) I’ve been reframing my […]

Stick with the Winners

posted by Beyond Blue

After reading the newest study on obesity—that the risk for obesity increased 171 percent (that wasn’t a typo!) among persons with obese friends—I realized the wisdom of my moms words when she told my sisters and me in high school […]

John D.: How Do You Move Beyond Blue?

posted by Beyond Blue

This week, for Beyond Blue’s series, “How Do You Move Beyond Blue?” I am interviewing John D., who is a fellow mental-health blogger. His site, “Storied Mind,” is full of insights on a variety of topics: anger, tears, marriage, workplace […]

Depression At Work

posted by Beyond Blue

Another blog post I read with interest was John’s piece about how his depression affects his work performance. I’ve wanted to talk about that more on Beyond Blue, but frankly that’s more difficult for me to expose to readers than […]

Speaking Out on College Campuses

posted by Beyond Blue

Also in yesterday’s “Washington Post,” was a wonderful article about the group Active Minds, founded by Malmon to promote dialogue about mental health on college campuses. She lost her older brother, Brian, to suicide in 2002, when he was a […]

Seinfeld on Humor: To Break the Face

posted by Beyond Blue

Since I am such a huge Seinfeld fan–I swear the script writers studied my life before crafting each episode–I thought I’d include an excerpt from Jerry Seinfeld’s book, “SeinLanguage,” which I own, of course. I try to exercise his wisdom […]

Side Effect #2: Weight Gain

posted by Beyond Blue

One of Liz’s most popular video blogs is the one in which she describes weight gain as a side effect. Since so many Beyond Blue readers have expressed this frustration, I thought I’d include it here.

Psych Meds and Weight Gain

posted by Beyond Blue

A few months ago, I featured an interview with Dr. Sanjay Gupta on this very topic of weight gain and psych meds. To read the interview I excerpted from the Winter 2007 issue of the Johns Hopkins Depression and Anxiety […]

About Light Therapy

posted by Beyond Blue

From “Getting Relief From Light Therapy” in the Fall 2007 Johns Hopkins Depression and Anxiety Bulletin: After years of lurking on the sidelines of depression treatment, therapy with bright light is finally winning a more prominent place in the arsenal […]

Light Therapy: Some Instructions

posted by Beyond Blue

Also from “Getting Relief From Light Therapy” in the Fall 2007 Johns Hopkins Depression and Anxiety Bulletin: Bright-light therapy involves sitting in front of a bank of full-spectrum fluorescent lights for 30-60 minutes each day. To be maximally effective, the […]

Cheap Light Therapy

posted by Beyond Blue

Karen Swartz, M.D., offers some light-therapy options for those on a tight budget: • A light on a timer. If your experience with SAD includes difficulty getting out of bed in the morning, try putting a lamp in your bedroom […]

To Everything There Is a Season

posted by Beyond Blue

I have always loved the verses of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, and throughout October and November I say them daily. The beautiful words are attributed to Solomon, which isn’t surprising since, according to the Bible, God granted him abundant wisdom. Not Wisdum. […]

Male Depression: Symptoms to Watch For

posted by Beyond Blue

Also in the Fall 2007 issue of the “Johns Hopkins Depression and Anxiety Bulletin,” a closer look at the symptoms of depression in men, and how they differ to classical symptoms most often found in women: It is difficult to […]

Depression Without Sadness

posted by Beyond Blue

Here are some classic symptoms of depression: • Persistent sadness or anxiety • Difficulty concentrating and remembering things • Fatigue and diminished energy • Changes in sleep and appetite • Feelings of hopelessness, guilt, and/or worthlessness • Thoughts of death […]

Cancer and Depression: It Sucks (But You Knew That)

posted by Beyond Blue

A few weeks back, a Beyond Blue reader asked (I can’t find the comment, sorry!), “What do you do when you are afflicted by BOTH cancer and depression? Your twelve steps work great for healthy people. But what do you […]

12 Depression Busters

posted by Beyond Blue

A few Beyond Blue readers have asked me to post the 12 Depression Busters gallery that Beliefnet featured back in July into a blog so that they can print them out. (By the way, it got 43 diggs! Not that […]

Charles Schulz: Melancholy and Laughter

posted by Beyond Blue

Last week there was an article in the “New York Times” about the spat between David Michaelis, the author of the biography of Charles M. Schulz (creator of the “Peanuts” comic strip) released this week by HarperCollins, and the Schulz […]

Stephen Colbert: Laugh When You’re Afraid

posted by Beyond Blue

With the suicide attempt of Owen Wilson a few weeks ago, I’ve been thinking a lot about humor and depression—about how so many of us depressives use wit as a remedy for our melancholy. “If we couldn’t laugh, we would […]

Owen Wilson: Darkness Invisible

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to reader Larry Parker for directing me to the story “Darkness Invisible” by Daphe Merkin in the New York Times Magazine last month. It is a powerful commentary on the public’s response to the suicide attempt of Owen Wilson. […]

Neurobiology: New Models For Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

I’m facinated by this “circuit-board” model of major depression–the connection between specific sets of nerve cells in different regions of the brain–explained by researchers like Helen S. Mayberg, M.D., professor of psychiatry and neurology at Emory School of Medicine. And […]

This, Too, Shall Pass

posted by Beyond Blue

In case any Beyond Blue readers are camping out in the Black Hole, convinced that they will never ever have a different mailing address, I wanted to share Michelle’s letter with you, so that you have at least one thing […]

Nancy on Suffering

posted by Beyond Blue

I was also very moved by Nancy’s comment on that same message board: [Your post] brings tears to my eyes as I identify with all that you said and the unspoken words also. It is a deep longing and pain […]

The Soul in Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to reader Sandy Slaga for mentioning this podcast called “The Soul in Depression” that you can hear by going to the American Public Media’s series, “Speaking of Faith,” by clicking here. Here’s a description of the podcast that you […]

The Depression Debate: Biological? Spiritual? Both?

posted by Beyond Blue

There’s a debate that keeps resurfacing on the message boards of Beyond Blue: is depression a physiological disorder or a spiritual illness in nature? With prayer and medication, can you live happily drug free? Or is that asking for problems? […]

Some Manners, Please

posted by Beyond Blue

I remember the dinner conversation the night of November 4, 1980: “Please pass the corn.” Five minutes later: “Pass the salt.” My mom voted for Carter. My dad voted for Reagan. I headed to the bathroom. That’s how I deal […]

Prayer and Medication: A Collaborative Approach

posted by Beyond Blue

Kevin Culligan, O.C.D. describes his collaborative approach to persons experiencing both depression and dark nights in the same chapter of Egan’s book, “Carmelite Prayer“: I follow a collaborative approach to assisting others with their spiritual journey. With most persons, this […]

The Spiritual Life and Bipolar Disorder

posted by Beyond Blue

According to Kevin Culligan, O.C.D, manic depression can mimic the behavior of someone growing in her spiritual life. Hey, that’s great news for me! The next time I get manic and tell an inappropriate joke to a colleague, I can […]

College Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

I was honored to participate last week in a blogger conference call sponsored by Revolution Health with Dr. Val Jone, Dr. Mark Smaller, and Ross Szabo about depression and mental illness among college students today. You can listen to the […]

College Depression Warning Signs

posted by Beyond Blue

I mentioned some of these in my prior post, but these warning signs are taken from Ross’s “Behind Happy Faces” website: Changes in feelings such as fear and anger are a normal part of life. Personal situations, such as a […]

Facts About College Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Yikes! Here are some facts I came across on Ross’s “Behind Happy Faces” website regarding depression and mental illness among college kids. I’m thinking that maybe I won’t send David and Katherine off to school, as much as that sounds […]

12 Ways to Care for a Depressed Person

posted by Beyond Blue

My blogging buddy, James Bishop, over at “Finding Optimism,” wrote an excellent post entitled “12 Ways to Care for a Depressed Person.” I’ll give you the first three, and then go over there yourself to get the others. It’s worth […]

Religion and Depression: God and Key Lime Pie

posted by Beyond Blue

After Eric read the latest story about Mother Teresa’s crisis of faith, he turned to me and said, “I don’t get it. All you religious types are depressed. What came first? The depression or the religion? . . . And […]

Owen Wilson: On Understanding Suicide (and Attempts)

posted by Beyond Blue

“The human heart is exquisitely fragile,” Catholic author and columnist Ron Rolheiser writes in his annual column on suicide. “Our judgments need to be gentle, our understanding deep, and our forgiveness wide.” I am grateful to reader Babs for leading […]

Mother Teresa: My Saint of Darkness and Hope

posted by Beyond Blue

“If I ever become a saint—I will surely be one of ‘darkness,’” Mother Teresa wrote in September of 1959. “I will continually be absent from heaven—to light the light of those in darkness on earth.” Two years earlier she wrote […]

The Psychology of Happiness

posted by Beyond Blue

I’ve mentioned psychologist Martin Seligman, author of “Authentic Happiness” (also the name of his website) and the father of positive psychology in past posts because his approach to depression and mood disorders has been helpful. Wendy Schuman of Beliefnet recently […]

When Self-Help Isn’t Helpful

posted by Beyond Blue

I was relieved to know Jane Chin, Ph.D., of Chinspirations.com agrees with my doctor that persons who are severely depressed should stay away from self-help books. On the message board on my post “What the Secret Can and Can’t Do […]

Treatment Resistant? Read James

posted by Beyond Blue

Have you been labeled “treatment resistent”? Maybe you just haven’t found the right psychiatrist. My blogging buddy, James, wrote a great post yesterday on his process of finding the right treatment for him. He links to my post on “My […]

6 Exercise Tips from My Docs

posted by Beyond Blue

Since so many Beyond Blue readers expressed the importance of exercise in their war against depression on the message board of my “Depression and Coupes” post, I thought I’d share exercise tips by Karen Swartz, M.D., one of the doctors […]

Beyond Blue on Yahoo

posted by Beyond Blue

Last Friday Yahoo ran a story on postpartum depression blogs out there to help moms. My blogging buddy, Katherine Stone, was featured, and she was so kind as to mention Beyond Blue as part of the story. To read the […]

Motherhood and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

I’ve said this in prior posts, but hopefully writing it over and over again will help me to know better how to tackle it. I hate that my depression affects my kids. Because I know it does. According to Mark […]

The Case for Family Support

posted by Beyond Blue

According to Dr. Mark Gold (who wrote “The Good News About Depression“–have I mentioned I hate that title?), a major problem in today’s society is that there is no support from extended family for depressed mothers. Gold says this: In […]

Marriage and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Have you ever been at a wedding reception when the best man stands us and toasts his glass of champagne to the bride, who is “so much better than the last one”? An awkward silence ensues, followed by an explosion […]

Mary Magdalene: Manic Depressive?

posted by Beyond Blue

My Guardian Angel Ann is a great guardian angel to my children, so, in grandparent style, she bought each of them a picture book and inscribed a message on them. She also bought Eric and me books. Mine was a […]

The “Easy Way Out”?

posted by Beyond Blue

Also in the “Washington Post,” I was delighted to see the following letter to the editor regarding the Laura Zigman essay on depression I excerpted in my “The Moment She Cried Uncle” post (to read the whole essay, click here) […]

Spiritual Friendships and Angels

posted by Beyond Blue

“So let me get this straight,” a friend of a friend said to me last night. “You drove eight hours up to Boston to stay with a woman you met on an Amtrak train two years ago, and with whom […]

Is Depression Like Cancer?

posted by Beyond Blue

There’s an interesting discussion on the message boards of my “Relapse: The Waiting Place” post and “What Makes People Relapse?” post about whether or not a person can fully recover from depression. Is depression like cancer … in that we […]

Depression and Brain Tumors

posted by Beyond Blue

Just yesterday I was talking to my fellow Beliefnet blogger David Kuo about the similarities between brain tumors and depression. I don’t have to worry about my growth turning malignant as much as he does, but we both agreed that […]

Optimism Versus Hope

posted by Beyond Blue

Reader Larry Parker is always posting interesting comments. I was intrigued by the distinction he makes (with Patton Dodd) between optimism and hope, and the comparison he makes between depression and cancer. He shares on the message board of “Relapse: […]

Optimism and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

In his comment, Larry highlighted some points made by Patton Dodd, who wrote Beliefnet’s “Optimism Is Depression,” (click here) about the distinction between optimism and hope. The article begins . . . Long before “The Secret” had readers talking about […]

Enough with the Gratitude!

posted by Beyond Blue

Even as I’m not very good at it, I know that gratitude is important and can help a person beat depression. Based on her research findings, University of California psychologist Sonja Lyubomirsky believes that keeping a gratitude journal–taking the time […]

Spare Me the Platitudes

posted by Beyond Blue

I was so refreshed by the candid comment of reader Margaret and so many others on my “They Just Don’t Get It” post. Margaret’s insights deserve an entire post because she hit on so many emotions that depressives feel but […]

Postpartum Progress

posted by Beyond Blue

Also at BlogHer I met a soulmate in Katherine Stone. She writes a fabulous blog on postpartum depression. In fact, it’s the most visited site on postpartum issues. Katherine spoke at a workshop I attended about blogs becoming a voice […]

Fertility Problems and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to reader Tina who mentioned her miscarrage as a possible trigger for her recent relapse into depression on the message board of “Relapse: The Waiting Place.” Just as depression is often triggered by a birth (postpartum depression), it happens […]

Relapse: The Waiting Place

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to an anonymous reader on my “Is It a Relapse?” post who wrote: This is a great article! However, what have you done that helped you to come out of it since? I was hoping to read on and […]

Resilience: The Opposite of Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

The opposite of depression is not happiness, according to Peter Kramer, author of “Against Depression” and “Listening to Prozac,” it is resilience: the ability to cope with life’s frustrations without falling apart. Proper treatment doesn’t suppress emotions or dull a […]

The Full Plate Club

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to Beyond Blue, I know that I’m not alone with regard to how my packed schedule contributes to depression. Reader TJ wrote this in an e-mail to me: One major factor to being suicidal was not enough time to […]

Advice for Moira

posted by Beyond Blue

I continue to be amazed and delighted by the support offered by readers to those who post their problems on the message boards of Beyond Blue. The other day at breakfast, Eric said to me, “I feel bad for Moira.” […]

For Gabriel: Your Disease Is Real

posted by Beyond Blue

One of the most meaningful notes I received on my relapse post was from a woman who lost her son to suicide. After reading her words, I felt renewed in my mission to educate as many people as I can […]

How to Approach a Friend?

posted by Beyond Blue

Along the lines of helping people to understand mental illness, I received the following question on my relapse post. I wondered what Beyond Blue readers have to say about how to approach a friend who is struggling with depression. Thank […]

Reader Wisdom: What Helped You

posted by Beyond Blue

Here are just a few of the pearls I found on the message board of “Is It a Relapse?” Reach the Middle Place Deep inside you have the heart and faith to know that bad as today is, there is […]

I Know What You Mean

posted by Beyond Blue

I was also pleased to hear how many readers have recently discovered Beyond Blue and are so relieved to have found a place where others share their pain, that they take away such hope from the reader comments and from […]

Menstruation and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Here’s an interesting article on WebMD by Miranda Hitti about the relationship between depression and menstrual cycles. Jan. 28, 2005 — Most women with depression get worsening symptoms prior to their periods, researchers say. In a new study, 64% of […]

Guardian Angels from Hell

posted by Beyond Blue

“Acknowledge miracles in your life. Angels are God’s miracle workers,” writes Jayne Howard Feldman, and Suzanne Siegel Zenkel says “Where there is goodness, there is an angel.” I’ve met an angel at every important crossroad in my life. One came […]

When to Get Help

posted by Beyond Blue

Every depressive is different when it comes to crying “Uncle,” and calling the doc. My guardian angel Ann says that if she stays in bed three days in a row, she will call the doctor on the fourth day (or […]

The Return of Enjoyment

posted by Beyond Blue

Although we weren’t allowed to roast marshmallows in the psych ward (for fear of someone purposely lighting himself on fire), there were many campfire moments, where we sat in a circle sharing some of the most intimate memories, stories, hopes, […]

The Other Face of Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

When that happens to a manic-depressive when her bumps get wings and fly away? She becomes “exuberant,” the title of Kay Redfield Jamison’s book (“Exuberance: The Passion for Life“). This is the other face of depression, not mania. Jamison writes: […]

My Depression Toolbox

posted by Beyond Blue

I’ve shared my twelve depression busters before, but by clicking here you can view a gallery featuring my toolbox that directs me toward mental health, and serves as an emergency lifeline in case I get lost along the way. I […]

Label Me, Please

posted by Beyond Blue

For a long while I was afraid to write things such as “I am mentally ill” or “I am bi-polar.” I was afraid of labels. By calling myself a manic-depressive would I trap my psyche in “sick” mode? By accepting […]

What “The Secret” Can and Can’t Do For Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to reader Larry Parker who wrote the following message on my “Oprah at Wellesley” post: Creative visualization, or “The Secret,” or the Law of Attraction–or whatever you want to call Oprah’s philosophy–is not inspiring for those of us with […]

A Call for Prayers

posted by Beyond Blue

I don’t know how to respond to the following notes posted on various message boards other than to say that I pray for you and offer you my sincere condolences and support. And I ask all readers out there to […]

Paris Hilton: Depression Isn’t a Rich Disease

posted by Beyond Blue

If I could avoid it–and exit the grocery store without accidentally reading tabloid headlines–I wouldn’t follow the details of Paris Hilton’s life. And even if I was one of those people truly fascinated by her, like my sister is, I […]

Sandy Slaga: How Do You Move Beyond Blue?

posted by Beyond Blue

A few weeks ago, I launched my series “How Do You Move Beyond Blue?” with an interview with Gretchen Rubin, a fellow blogger who is working on the “Happiness Project.” Now I bring to you the lovely and inspirational Sandy […]

Oprah Is Now My Friend: Her Show on Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

I hereby apologize for my anti-Oprah remarks in past posts. Until last week’s show on depression I didn’t realize all the support she offers (online chat rooms and tons of resources via her media kingdom, which starts at www.oprah.com) to […]

Morning Has Broken for Phil

posted by Beyond Blue

On Wednesday’s show Oprah also interviewed Phil Aronson, husband of Emme Aronson, formerly the world’s leading plus-size super model and Revlon cover girl. I think his story is important to tell too because our society often thinks of depression as […]

Mars and Venus in Tears: Men, Women, and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

On Oprah’s website, I found this interesting article about the difference in symptoms between women and men who suffer from depression: According to psychiatrist Dr. Gail Saltz, author of “Anatomy of a Secret Life,” major depression and dysthymia affect twice […]

Defining Major Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

For readers like “Citizen,” I think it’s important to list the symptoms of major depression covered by the DSM-IV (the current edition of the Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) published by the American Psychiatric Association. According to the DSM-IV, a […]

Criteria for Depression Are Too Broad, Researchers Say

posted by Beyond Blue

Click here to read Shankar Vedantam’s entire “Washington Post” article on the new guidelines for diagnosing depression. It begins: Up to 25 percent of people in whom psychiatrists would currently diagnose depression may only be reacting normally to stressful events […]

Depression or Life?

posted by Beyond Blue

Thanks to reader “Citizen” who posted the following question on my “Labor Pains” post: How do you distinguish depression from ordinary feelings, if it isn’t as obvious as what you have described? Separating clinical depression from the sadness and normal […]

Labor Pains

posted by Beyond Blue

Depression is a lot like childbirth. Once you’ve climbed out of the Black Hole (i.e. are holding your newborn in your arms) you forget (at least temporarily) about all the cursing you did during the labor that got you there. […]

Advice for Graduates and Depressives

posted by Beyond Blue

Speaking of advice for graduates, here are a few passages from recent commencement addresses that I found especially meaningful. From them I gleaned many insights on how to live more gracefully with depression and anxiety. Toni Morrison at Wellesley College, […]

Bishop Battles Depression–and Its Stigma

posted by Beyond Blue

Here’s an excellent article written by Douglas Todd for Religion News Service about Archbishop Roussin’s depression and how he is fighting for better understanding of mental illness within religious communities. Once again, Roussin is my hero! Archbishop Raymond Roussin remembers […]

Down Came the Rain

posted by Beyond Blue

I mentioned in my “Celebrity Depression, Spiritual Lessons” gallery how Brooke Shields’ memoir, “Down Came the Rain,” gave me permission to cry all I wanted, especially in the months after I started breastfeeding Katherine, when I started to sink into […]

What If? A Doctor’s Note of Hope

posted by Beyond Blue

My heart goes out to reader Nancy, who posted the following message on my “Depression Is Conquerable” post: “I read with interest your posts about depression. I have been a long-time sufferer–since I was a child–of major depression as well […]

Q&A on Deep Brain Stimulation and Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

I mentioned Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) the other day, but the link to the article on it required a password. Sorry about that. Here are some excerpts from an interview with Helen S. Mayberg, M.D., professor of psychiatry and neurology […]

Depression–The Full Monty

posted by Beyond Blue

What do the Christian existential thinker Soren Kierkegaard and the movie “The Full Monty” (the 1997 flick about six unemployed steel workers who form a male striptease act) have in common? Let me tell you. Kierkegaard described despair as not […]

The Real Live Preacher’s Depression–Full Monty Style

posted by Beyond Blue

Ever since my friend helped forge the connection between Kierkegaard’s act of kenosis, or self-emptying (in my case sharing with the world my story of depression and recovery) and “The Full Monty,” I’ve been on the lookout for other flashers […]

Chris Rose’s Depression—Full Monty Style

posted by Beyond Blue

Another poignant testimony is the 4,500-word article entitled “Hell and Back” by Chris Rose, a columnist for The Times-Picayune in New Orleans, who reported on the post-Katrina life, and, as a result, got sucked down the “rabbit hole” (as he […]

Depression Is Conquerable

posted by Beyond Blue

This is why I need to be in touch with people currently battling the demons of depression: they remind me of where I was, so that in the event I find myself in that massive pile of animal waste again, […]

Treatment for Depression: Some Facts

posted by Beyond Blue

I just shared my belief that depression is conquerable. But how? Here are some treatment facts, according to “The Johns Hopkins White Papers 2007: Depression and Anxiety” by Karen L. Swartz, one of the physicians who evaluated me in Spring […]

Good News For Treatment-Resistant Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Also from “The Johns Hopkins White Papers 2007“: “If you’re on an antidepressant and it’s not working, don’t give up on it: You may need a higher dose, a longer duration of therapy, a different drug altogether, or a combination […]

Deep Brain Stimulation For Treatment-Resistant Depression

posted by Beyond Blue

Click here to read a fascinating interview on “Medscape Today” with Helen S. Mayberg, MD, Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology, at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, about her groundbreaking research into the neurophysiologic loci of depression and the benefits of […]

A Dozen Addiction Zappers and Depression Busters

posted by Beyond Blue

Lest my readers think that I’m contracted by the Dark Side (sorry, watching too much “Star Wars” lately) to encourage addictive behavior and rationalize all weakness, here are a dozen addiction zappers and depression busters I use in deficient moments […]

Good Friday and the Bleeding Woman

posted by Beyond Blue

Good Friday and the narrative of the Lord’s passion will always be connected to the story of the hemorrhaging woman in the Synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) for me, because just as I yelled out to God in the […]

Reader Response: ‘Til Death Do Us Part

posted by Beyond Blue

Another Reader Question: one reader asked if she should leave her husband of 30 years (did I get that right?) because he is unsupportive of her depression. (Feel free to fill in the gaps of the situation on the message […]

What I Can Learn From Gov. Patrick

posted by Beyond Blue

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick must have memorized Don Miguel Ruiz’s classic, “The Four Agreements“–a book introducing the wisdom of the ancient Toltec, a Mexican tribe of scientists and artists–because it appears he’s got the first agreement down: “Be Impeccable with […]

Kitty’s Shocking Story

posted by Beyond Blue

I was so moved by these excerpts that I read from Kitty Dukakis’ memoir about her battle with depression. With the help of medical journalist Larry Tye, Kitty shares how controversial shock therapy treatments saved her life.

Rosie, My New Best Friend

posted by Beyond Blue

I’ve always loved Rosie O’Donnell for her courteous and tactful wit. But now I want to hang photos of this comedian all over my desk because, as a fellow depressive gone public, she has just made my job of educating […]

Ten (or Eleven) Days to Self-Esteem

posted by Beyond Blue

Each summer I pick a project. Last year’s was to develop my self-esteem. According to David Burns, that should only take ten days. But nine months later, I’m still not there. From June to August last year, this was the […]

Go Into the Pain?

posted by Beyond Blue

Now that I have mocked the meditation of one of the most prominent Catholic theologians of our time, let me say that I adore Henri Nouwen’s stuff. Because it is so raw and real. A friend of mine told me […]

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 »

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