Southern One

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Just a simple country boy

Happy holidays, unless you’re depressed

"Happy Thanksgiving," soon to be "Joy to the world,", unless you have the holiday blues — a sometimes debilitating and dangerous if commonplace disease.

Holiday depression is so commonplace and so hard to recognize that the Mayo Clinic has a Web page devoted to it, and depression support Web sites have whole archives devoted to the problem.

Vincent van Gogh: On the Threshold of Eternity

Vincent van Gogh: On the Threshold of Eternity

Almost anyone given to genuine, positive celebration of the holidays can help, since good fellowship and persistent friendly support help.

Thoughtful support is, after all, the reverse of the pervasive prejudice against mental illness which continuously afflicts the afflicted among us.

There may be few effective alternatives. Despite the abundance of ads for pharmaceutical "cures," there apparently is no magic bullet. There is instead evidence that a great many widely prescribed medications do not work as advertised, if at all.

Inevitably, some form of professional help will be required if some who face the holidays with year-round, acute, clinical depression are to get through the season alive.

Even if they refuse help, the beleaguered need us and many need us most, now.

If turned away, we should in most cases gently persist in holding out the hand of friendship. For some who are clinically depressed during the holidays and unwilling or unable to even acknowledge their plight, a helping hand is a matter of life and death.

Remember too that most will still need us long after the seasonal frenzy is quiet.

No one can follow the cruel injunction, "just snap out of it." People are often catapulted into the pit, altogether against their will. The path out of the pit is often steep and so very, very long.

At the spiritual core of the season is love for one another and freely given help for those in need — almost a prescription for survival/ of the clinically depressed, if those of us who can help, will.

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2 Responses

  1. […] A Simple Country Boy calls upon those of us who are well, to help those who are not. […]

  2. […] child is the story of how something sacred emerges despite tremendous adversity.” Those who suffer depression during the holidays, he explains, may in fact be closer to the “true spirit” of […]

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