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NateR
02-02-2009, 02:51 AM
I read this article a few years ago and I've always found it interesting.

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/education/ed0001.html

The Problem with Self-Esteem
Paul C. Vitz

Self-esteem is a deeply secular concept, and not one with which Christians should be particularly involved.

Today, the largest and most familiar part of American Psychology is the popular psychology of self-esteem, now found throughout American society. Self-esteem and the obsession that so many have with it, is familiar to almost all of us these days. Self-esteem programs affect the lives of countless school children, because this idea, really an ideal, has been taken and applied primarily in education.

Historically, the concept of self-esteem has no clear or obvious intellectual origins. No major psychological theorist made it a central concept. Many psychologists, however, have emphasized the self in various ways but the usual focus has been on self-actualization or fulfillment of one's potential. As a result, it is difficult to trace the source of this emphasis on self-esteem. Apparently, this widespread preoccupation is a distillation of the general concern with the self found in so many psychological theories. Self-esteem seems to be the common denominator pervading the writings of such varied theorists as Abraham Maslow, Carl Rogers, ego-strength psychologists, and moral educators especially recently. In any case, the concern with self-esteem hovers everywhere in the US today. It is, however, most reliably found in the world of education from professors of education, to principals, teachers, school boards, and the television programs that are concerned with education, particularly those programs concerned with preschool education like Sesame Street.

Self worth, a feeling of respect and confidence in one's being has merit as we shall see. But an ego-centered, let me feel good self-esteem, where we can ignore our failures and our need for God is quite another thing. What is wrong with the concept of self-esteem? Lots, and it's fundamental in nature. There have been thousands of psychological studies on self-esteem. Often the term self-esteem is muddled and confused as it becomes a label for such various aspects as self image, as self acceptance, self worth, self love, self trust, etcetera. The bottom line is that no agreed upon definition or measure for self-esteem exists. And whatever self-esteem is, no reliable evidence supports self-esteem scores as meaning much at all.

There is no evidence that high self-esteem reliably causes anything. Indeed, a lot of people with little of it, have achieved a great deal in one kind of activity or the other. For instance, Gloria Steinem, who has written a number of books and been a major leader of the feminist movement, recently revealed in a book long statement that she suffers from low self-esteem. And many people with high self-esteem are happy just being rich, beautiful, or socially connected. Some other people, whose high self-esteem has been noted are successful inner-city drug dealers who generally feel quite good about themselves. After all they have succeeded in making a lot of money in a hostile and competitive environment.

A 1989 study of mathematical skills compared students in eight different countries. American students ranked lowest in mathematical competence and Korean students ranked highest. But the researchers also asked students to rate how good they were at mathematics. The Americans ranked highest in self-judged mathematical ability, while the Koreans ranked lowest. Mathematical self-esteem had an inverse relation to mathematical accomplishment. This is certainly an example of a feel-good psychology keeping students from an accurate perception of reality. The self-esteem theory predicts that only those who feel good about themselves will do well, which is supposedly why all students need it. But in fact, feeling good about yourself may simply make you over confident, narcissistic and unable to work hard. Now, I am not implying that high self-esteem is always negatively related to accomplishment. Rather, the research mentioned above shows that measures of self-esteem have no reliable relationship to behavior, either positive or negative. In part, this is simply because life is too complicated for so simple a notion to be of much use. But for other reasons we should expect this failure in advance.

We all know, and know of, people who are motivated by insecurities and self doubts. These are often both the heroes and the villains of history. The prevalence of certain men of small stature in the history of fanatical military accomplishment is well documented. Julius Cesar, Napoleon, Hitler, and Stalin were all men determined to prove they were big. Many great athletes and others have had to overcome grave physical disabilities and a lack of self-esteem. One might call this the Demosthenes effect after the ancient Greek with a speech impediment. He practiced speaking with his mouth full of pebbles and later became a famous orator.

Many superior achievements appear to have their origin in what psychologist, Alfred Adler, called an inferiority complex. The point is not that feeling bad about ourselves is good, but rather that only two things can truly change how we feel about ourselves. Real accomplishment and real love.

First, accomplishment in the real world affects our attitudes. A child who learns to read, who can do mathematics, who can play the piano or baseball, will have a genuine sense of accomplishment and an appropriate sense of self-esteem. Schools that fail to teach reading, writing, and arithmetic, corrupt the proper understanding of self-esteem. Educators, who say don't grade them, don't label them, you have to make them feel good about themselves, cause these problems. It makes no sense for students to be full of self-esteem if they have learned nothing. Reality will soon puncture their illusions and they will have to face two disturbing facts: that they are ignorant; and that the adults responsible for teaching them have lied to them.

In the real world, praise has to be the reward for something worthwhile. Praise must be connected to reality.

There is an even more fundamental way in which most people come to genuine self-esteem, actually to feelings of self worth or what psychologists call "basic trust." Such feelings come through receiving love.

First of all, our mother's love, normally. But this foundational experience of love and self confidence cannot be faked. When teachers attempt to create this deep and motivating emotion by pretending they love all their students for one hour or less a day, and by praising them indiscriminately, they misunderstand the nature of this kind of love. Parental love simply cannot be manufactured by a teacher in a few minutes of interaction a day. The child not only knows that such love is fake, but that real teachers are supposed to teach, and that this involves not just support, but discipline, demands, and reprimands, in short tough love.

Good teachers show their love by caring enough to use discipline. Thus the best and most admired teachers in most American high schools today, are the athletic coaches. They still teach, but they expect performance and they rarely worry about self-esteem. One of the best things that can happen for a budding football player who isn't any good is to be cut from the team, because then he can begin looking for what he is good at. Instead of struggling at football where he would be wasting crucial years of his life being a third-rate player, he might become a first-rate golfer, or math student or artist. A lot of things in life we discover by the process of elimination and we have to have enough faith in our teachers that they'll eliminate us from some of the subjects we don't belong in so that we can find where we do belong.

Similar problems arise for those who try to build their own lagging self-esteem by speaking lovingly to their own inner child or other insecure inner self. Such attempts are doomed to failure for two reasons: first, if we are insecure about our self worth, how can we believe our own praise? Think about it. If you don't think you're really very worthwhile, how can you tell yourself you are and believe it? Reality has to come in other people's love or the actual accomplishment of something. Then you know, "Hey, it's grounded." Otherwise it's kind of your own little psychological narcotic. And second, like the child, we know the need for self discipline and accomplishment. In short, self-esteem should be understood as a response, not a cause. It is primarily an emotional response to what we and what others have done to us. Though it is a desirable feeling or internal state, like happiness, it does not cause much. Also, like happiness and like love, self-esteem is almost impossible to get by trying to get it. Try to get self-esteem and you're likely to fail, but do good to others and accomplish something for yourself and you will have all you need.

The subject is vital for Christians partly because so many are so concerned about it, and partly because the recovery of self-esteem has been emphasized very explicitly, particularly in Protestant Christianity. We must note, however, that self-esteem is a deeply secular concept, not one with which Christians should be particularly involved. Nor need they be. Christians should have a tremendous sense of self worth. God made us in His image, He loves us, He sent His Son to save each of us, our destiny is to be with God forever. Each of us is of such value that the angels rejoice over every repentant sinner.

But on the other hand, we have nothing on our own to be proud of. We were given life along with all of our talents, and we are all poor sinners. There is certainly no theological reason to believe that the rich or the successful or the high in self-esteem are more favored by God and are more likely to reach heaven. Indeed, blessed are the humble, blessed are the meek.

In addition, self-esteem is based on the very American notion that each of us is responsible for our own happiness. Thus, within a Christian framework, self-esteem has a subtle and negative effect; we may take the pursuit of happiness as a far more intense personal goal than the pursuit of holiness.

Today, self-esteem has become very important because it is thought to be essential to happiness. Unless you love yourself you will not be happy. But to assume that we must love ourselves, that God will not love us as much as we need to be loved is a form of practical atheism. We say we believe in God but we don't trust Him. Instead, many Christians live by the very unbiblical: "God loves those who love themselves."

Another problem is that Christians have begun to excuse evil or destructive behavior on the grounds of low self-esteem. But self-esteem, whether high or low, does not determine our actions. We are accountable for them and we are responsible for trying to do good and to avoid evil. Low self-esteem does not make someone an alcoholic, nor does it make a person finally able to admit his or her addiction and do something about it. Both of these decisions are up to each of us regardless of our level of self-esteem.

Finally, the whole focus on ourselves feeds unrealistic self love. What psychologists often call narcissism. One would have thought America had enough trouble with narcissism in the 70s which was the Me Generation and in the 80s with the yuppies. Today, the search for self-esteem is just the newest expression of America's old egomania.

In giving school children happy faces for all their homework just because it was handed in or giving them trophies for just being on the team is flattery of the kind found for decades in our commercial slogans "You deserve a break today," "You are the boss," "Have it your way." Such self love is an extreme expression of an individualistic psychology long supported by our consumer world. Now, it is reinforced by educators who gratify the vanity of even our youngest children with repetitive mantras like "You are the most important person in the whole world."

This narcissistic emphasis in American society and especially in education and to some extent in religion is a disguised form of self worship. If accepted, America would have 250 million "most important persons in the whole world." Two hundred and fifty million golden selves. If such idolatry were not socially so dangerous, it would be embarrassing, even pathetic. Let's hope common sense makes something of a come back.

Primadawn
02-02-2009, 03:49 AM
Thanks Nate! Good read!

MattHughesRocks
02-02-2009, 04:37 AM
I tried to read it so I can get involved because I think it's an important topic but it was just too long. I gassed out :laugh:

Primadawn
02-02-2009, 11:50 AM
Mmmmmmmmmm..OK, I skimmed a bit...

Tyburn
02-02-2009, 10:33 PM
The Problem with Self-Esteem
Paul C. Vitz

1)Self-esteem is a deeply secular concept, and not one with which Christians should be particularly involved.

Today, the largest and most familiar part of American Psychology is the popular psychology of self-esteem, now found throughout American society. Self-esteem and the obsession that so many have with it, is familiar to almost all of us these days. Self-esteem programs affect the lives of countless school children, because this idea, really an ideal, has been taken and applied primarily in education.

Historically, the concept of self-esteem has no clear or obvious intellectual origins. No major psychological theorist made it a central concept. Many psychologists, however, have emphasized the self in various ways but the usual focus has been on self-actualization or fulfillment of one's potential. As a result, it is difficult to trace the source of this emphasis on self-esteem. Apparently, this widespread preoccupation is a distillation of the general concern with the self found in so many psychological theories. Self-esteem seems to be the common denominator pervading the writings of such varied theorists as Abraham Maslow, Carl Rogers, ego-strength psychologists, and moral educators especially recently. In any case, the concern with self-esteem hovers everywhere in the US today. It is, however, most reliably found in the world of education — from professors of education, to principals, teachers, school boards, and the television programs that are concerned with education, particularly those programs concerned with preschool education like Sesame Street.

2) Self worth, a feeling of respect and confidence in one's being has merit as we shall see. But an ego-centered, let me feel good self-esteem, where we can ignore our failures and our need for God is quite another thing. What is wrong with the concept of self-esteem? Lots, and it's fundamental in nature. There have been thousands of psychological studies on self-esteem. Often the term self-esteem is muddled and confused as it becomes a label for such various aspects as self image, as self acceptance, self worth, self love, self trust, etcetera. The bottom line is that no agreed upon definition or measure for self-esteem exists. And whatever self-esteem is, no reliable evidence supports self-esteem scores as meaning much at all.

There is no evidence that high self-esteem reliably causes anything. Indeed, a lot of people with little of it, have achieved a great deal in one kind of activity or the other. For instance, Gloria Steinem, who has written a number of books and been a major leader of the feminist movement, recently revealed in a book long statement that she suffers from low self-esteem. And many people with high self-esteem are happy just being rich, beautiful, or socially connected. Some other people, whose high self-esteem has been noted are successful inner-city drug dealers who generally feel quite good about themselves. After all they have succeeded in making a lot of money in a hostile and competitive environment.

A 1989 study of mathematical skills compared students in eight different countries. American students ranked lowest in mathematical competence and Korean students ranked highest. But the researchers also asked students to rate how good they were at mathematics. The Americans ranked highest in self-judged mathematical ability, while the Koreans ranked lowest. Mathematical self-esteem had an inverse relation to mathematical accomplishment. This is certainly an example of a feel-good psychology keeping students from an accurate perception of reality. The self-esteem theory predicts that only those who feel good about themselves will do well, which is supposedly why all students need it. But in fact, feeling good about yourself may simply make you over confident, narcissistic and unable to work hard. Now, I am not implying that high self-esteem is always negatively related to accomplishment. Rather, the research mentioned above shows that measures of self-esteem have no reliable relationship to behavior, either positive or negative. In part, this is simply because life is too complicated for so simple a notion to be of much use. But for other reasons we should expect this failure in advance.

3) We all know, and know of, people who are motivated by insecurities and self doubts. These are often both the heroes and the villains of history. The prevalence of certain men of small stature in the history of fanatical military accomplishment is well documented. Julius Cesar, Napoleon, Hitler, and Stalin were all men determined to prove they were big. Many great athletes and others have had to overcome grave physical disabilities and a lack of self-esteem. One might call this the Demosthenes effect after the ancient Greek with a speech impediment. He practiced speaking with his mouth full of pebbles and later became a famous orator.

Many superior achievements appear to have their origin in what psychologist, Alfred Adler, called an inferiority complex. The point is not that feeling bad about ourselves is good, but rather that only two things can truly change how we feel about ourselves. Real accomplishment and real love.

4) First, accomplishment in the real world affects our attitudes. A child who learns to read, who can do mathematics, who can play the piano or baseball, will have a genuine sense of accomplishment and an appropriate sense of self-esteem. Schools that fail to teach reading, writing, and arithmetic, corrupt the proper understanding of self-esteem. Educators, who say don't grade them, don't label them, you have to make them feel good about themselves, cause these problems. It makes no sense for students to be full of self-esteem if they have learned nothing. Reality will soon puncture their illusions and they will have to face two disturbing facts: that they are ignorant; and that the adults responsible for teaching them have lied to them.

In the real world, praise has to be the reward for something worthwhile. Praise must be connected to reality.

There is an even more fundamental way in which most people come to genuine self-esteem, actually to feelings of self worth or what psychologists call "basic trust." Such feelings come through receiving love.

First of all, our mother's love, normally. But this foundational experience of love and self confidence cannot be faked. When teachers attempt to create this deep and motivating emotion by pretending they love all their students for one hour or less a day, and by praising them indiscriminately, they misunderstand the nature of this kind of love. Parental love simply cannot be manufactured by a teacher in a few minutes of interaction a day. The child not only knows that such love is fake, but that real teachers are supposed to teach, and that this involves not just support, but discipline, demands, and reprimands, in short tough love.

Good teachers show their love by caring enough to use discipline. Thus the best and most admired teachers in most American high schools today, are the athletic coaches. They still teach, but they expect performance and they rarely worry about self-esteem. One of the best things that can happen for a budding football player who isn't any good is to be cut from the team, because then he can begin looking for what he is good at. Instead of struggling at football where he would be wasting crucial years of his life being a third-rate player, he might become a first-rate golfer, or math student or artist. A lot of things in life we discover by the process of elimination and we have to have enough faith in our teachers that they'll eliminate us from some of the subjects we don't belong in so that we can find where we do belong.

Similar problems arise for those who try to build their own lagging self-esteem by speaking lovingly to their own inner child or other insecure inner self. Such attempts are doomed to failure for two reasons: first, if we are insecure about our self worth, how can we believe our own praise? Think about it. If you don't think you're really very worthwhile, how can you tell yourself you are and believe it? Reality has to come in — other people's love or the actual accomplishment of something. Then you know, "Hey, it's grounded." Otherwise it's kind of your own little psychological narcotic. And second, like the child, we know the need for self discipline and accomplishment. In short, self-esteem should be understood as a response, not a cause. It is primarily an emotional response to what we and what others have done to us. Though it is a desirable feeling or internal state, like happiness, it does not cause much. Also, like happiness and like love, self-esteem is almost impossible to get by trying to get it. Try to get self-esteem and you're likely to fail, but do good to others and accomplish something for yourself and you will have all you need.

The subject is vital for Christians partly because so many are so concerned about it, and partly because the recovery of self-esteem has been emphasized very explicitly, particularly in Protestant Christianity. We must note, however, that self-esteem is a deeply secular concept, not one with which Christians should be particularly involved. Nor need they be. Christians should have a tremendous sense of self worth. God made us in His image, He loves us, He sent His Son to save each of us, our destiny is to be with God forever. Each of us is of such value that the angels rejoice over every repentant sinner.

But on the other hand, we have nothing on our own to be proud of. We were given life along with all of our talents, and we are all poor sinners. There is certainly no theological reason to believe that the rich or the successful or the high in self-esteem are more favored by God and are more likely to reach heaven. Indeed, blessed are the humble, blessed are the meek.

In addition, self-esteem is based on the very American notion that each of us is responsible for our own happiness. Thus, within a Christian framework, self-esteem has a subtle and negative effect; we may take the pursuit of happiness as a far more intense personal goal than the pursuit of holiness.

5) Today, self-esteem has become very important because it is thought to be essential to happiness. Unless you love yourself you will not be happy. But to assume that we must love ourselves, that God will not love us as much as we need to be loved is a form of practical atheism. We say we believe in God but we don't trust Him. Instead, many Christians live by the very unbiblical: "God loves those who love themselves."

Another problem is that Christians have begun to excuse evil or destructive behavior on the grounds of low self-esteem. But self-esteem, whether high or low, does not determine our actions. We are accountable for them and we are responsible for trying to do good and to avoid evil. Low self-esteem does not make someone an alcoholic, nor does it make a person finally able to admit his or her addiction and do something about it. Both of these decisions are up to each of us regardless of our level of self-esteem.

Finally, the whole focus on ourselves feeds unrealistic self love. What psychologists often call narcissism. One would have thought America had enough trouble with narcissism in the 70s which was the Me Generation and in the 80s with the yuppies. Today, the search for self-esteem is just the newest expression of America's old egomania.

In giving school children happy faces for all their homework just because it was handed in or giving them trophies for just being on the team is flattery of the kind found for decades in our commercial slogans — "You deserve a break today," "You are the boss," "Have it your way." Such self love is an extreme expression of an individualistic psychology long supported by our consumer world. Now, it is reinforced by educators who gratify the vanity of even our youngest children with repetitive mantras like "You are the most important person in the whole world."

This narcissistic emphasis in American society and especially in education and to some extent in religion is a disguised form of self worship. If accepted, America would have 250 million "most important persons in the whole world." Two hundred and fifty million golden selves. If such idolatry were not socially so dangerous, it would be embarrassing, even pathetic. Let's hope common sense makes something of a come back.

1) Self esteem is a concept of Psychology, it very much depends on how its used as to whether it is Secular or not... For example...I used to have low self esteem...ive got better by reminding myself that I am important because I have intrinsic value (something I didnt believe for a very long time) One cant be that bad if they are made in the image of GOD and he loves them.

So it depends how its used.

2) The problem is better answered by the question "how do I find contentment" many people have low self esteem because they put their contentment in unsound things. Things change, they get let down, they are no longer content. People primarily place their esteem in people, places or events. All those three are fallable.

To be content one must place there sense of worth in something which is fixed and can never be changed. People do this in two ways, get this wrong, and you can be dangerous. People place their worth in GOD or in Ideologies. The latter is dangerous because it shifts overtime and that can lead to internal struggles within the group who believe and have their worth in an ideology. I take for example, the Nazi party of Germany. There many people found contentment through the expression of an ideology....but when the leader himself made that ideology organic and it began to morph, some lost their contentment, and an internal conflict began. Eventually the Ideology was ruined alltogether. This kinda thing is where your deep thinkers put their sense of being.

The only true way of contentment is with something that is 100percent permanent and 100percent unchanging...that would be GOD then.

3) Even in psychological discourse there are streams of thought. Even "Self Esteem" isnt the only possibilitiy in Psychology

4) be aware emotion and contentment are not the same thing. One can be extremely emotionally unhappy and still be content...also...frankly, emotional feelings lie :ninja:

5) GOD does say Love others as you love yourself...how can you do that if you dont love yourself or treat yourself with due respect? its not about being egotistical...its about being truthful

Bonnie
02-02-2009, 10:58 PM
Good article; definitely makes you think about yourself, your kids and society as a whole and what we're doing to ourselves. I've definitely given thought to self-esteem and/or self-worth especially looking back as a child with our home life and coming up through school and now as an adult in adult relationships with my mom, sisters, people I've worked with or come into contact with in different situations.

I think in a nutshell "pursuit of holiness" says it all. For in the pursuit of holiness, I believe we would find "happiness" and contentment within ourselves. Obviously, I see in myself, that I've wasted too much time worrying (something I've consciously tried to eliminate from my life these past several years) about what others thought of me or the "standard" the few in our society have set as what we should strive to be in order to be "accepted".

I guess if God thinks I'm worthy, I definitely shouldn't question my self-worth. :wink:

Thanks, Nathan! :)

Fred
03-03-2009, 09:08 PM
Being a son (small "s") of God through Christ is all the self-esteem I need. Jn. 1:12, Rom. 8:14. What an undeserved honor it is to be a joint-heir with Christ!

As for psychology, it is garbage. The best one can hope for through psychology is to exchange one neurosis or mental crutch for another which society deems less harmful or disruptive. Psychology is a manipulation of one's thoughts and attention in the attempt to focus on positive outcomes. The problem is that when one's entire mind is sinful and "conformed to this world" (Rom 12:2), trying to manipulate the thinking patterns merely leaves a person in a sinful, errant state of being.

The medical industry doesn't even bother with psychology anymore. Psychiatry (hard-core neuroleptic and antidepressant drugs) is the name of the game now. They just want to drug people into a numbed-out state where they are less likely to hurt themselves or others. What a sorry substitute for regeneration!

CAVEMAN
03-03-2009, 09:40 PM
Being a son (small "s") of God through Christ is all the self-esteem I need. Jn. 1:12, Rom. 8:14. What an undeserved honor it is to be a joint-heir with Christ!

As for psychology, it is garbage. The best one can hope for through psychology is to exchange one neurosis or mental crutch for another which society deems less harmful or disruptive. Psychology is a manipulation of one's thoughts and attention in the attempt to focus on positive outcomes. The problem is that when one's entire mind is sinful and "conformed to this world" (Rom 12:2), trying to manipulate the thinking patterns merely leaves a person in a sinful, errant state of being.

The medical industry doesn't even bother with psychology anymore. Psychiatry (hard-core neuroleptic and antidepressant drugs) is the name of the game now. They just want to drug people into a numbed-out state where they are less likely to hurt themselves or others. What a sorry substitute for regeneration!

:happy0159: You nailed it!

MattHughesRocks
03-04-2009, 04:22 AM
How are you so sure of your post? Or are you just guessing or giving your two cents?



As for psychology, it is garbage. The best one can hope for through psychology is to exchange one neurosis or mental crutch for another which society deems less harmful or disruptive. Psychology is a manipulation of one's thoughts and attention in the attempt to focus on positive outcomes. The problem is that when one's entire mind is sinful and "conformed to this world" (Rom 12:2), trying to manipulate the thinking patterns merely leaves a person in a sinful, errant state of being.

The medical industry doesn't even bother with psychology anymore. Psychiatry (hard-core neuroleptic and antidepressant drugs) is the name of the game now. They just want to drug people into a numbed-out state where they are less likely to hurt themselves or others. What a sorry substitute for regeneration!

Llamafighter
03-04-2009, 01:49 PM
I really don't feel like I deserve to read your post Nate, so I'll just go sit in the dark and cry like the pathetic baby that I am :cry:
:laugh:

good post I agree with most of it!

mikthehick
03-04-2009, 02:34 PM
Being a son (small "s") of God through Christ is all the self-esteem I need. Jn. 1:12, Rom. 8:14. What an undeserved honor it is to be a joint-heir with Christ!

As for psychology, it is garbage. The best one can hope for through psychology is to exchange one neurosis or mental crutch for another which society deems less harmful or disruptive. Psychology is a manipulation of one's thoughts and attention in the attempt to focus on positive outcomes. The problem is that when one's entire mind is sinful and "conformed to this world" (Rom 12:2), trying to manipulate the thinking patterns merely leaves a person in a sinful, errant state of being.

The medical industry doesn't even bother with psychology anymore. Psychiatry (hard-core neuroleptic and antidepressant drugs) is the name of the game now. They just want to drug people into a numbed-out state where they are less likely to hurt themselves or others. What a sorry substitute for regeneration!


Ooooook. I agree that your heart is in the right place, and most definietly with your Romans 12:2 verse, and definitely believe that we are sinful creatures from the moment of conceptions, but definitely do not believe that psychology is complete garbage if used in a good manner.

I'm currently a student in a Master's counseling program at a Christian school, and believe that pathological means of dealing with psyc. issues should always be the LAST course of action.

I was drugged heavily in a research hospital after being mis-diagnosed. I'm also a counseling junkie and have been in and out of thearpy my entire life for different issues, none serious, but just the normal growing pains, low self-esteem and being picked on, plus dealing with death. There are all very normal emotions in the human spectrum and some people need more help in dealing with them.

I was misdiagnosed for depression and thrown in a hospital for 2 weeks, it was the worst 2 weeks of my life, one of the scariest times of my life and I almost died. I have a pathological fear of hospitals now and have to work with it every time i go visit someone in a hospital or doctor setting.

People may look at me as crazy for admitting to going to counseling, but if they judge that quickly, then that is there problem. After dealing with what I've had to, I've learned that

1) I stand with the truth
2) I stand behind God in every way possible
3) I've learned to grow a backbone
4) Not everyone is going to like me as a person and that is ok

Hopefully one day way down the road, I will be able to practice as a christian counselor. My hope is that one day, people will not regard counseling as only for 'crazy people' and will look at it as a "helping profession" that it is. Not every counselor believes in drugging people. My last two never wrote one prescription for me. They used other techniques from the Adlerian, Existential, and Gestalt theories to get to the root of my problem, prayed with me, then utilized my coping skills into action so I could learn and grow in Christ instead of with the 'mental crutch' of drugs.

I'm not arguing with you at all, but just honing the fact that psychology isn't as evil as some people think. People are afraid of it because they may just not know.

People fear what they don't know, that's just a fact of life.

Tyburn
03-04-2009, 05:35 PM
Being a son (small "s") of God through Christ is all the self-esteem I need. Jn. 1:12, Rom. 8:14. What an undeserved honor it is to be a joint-heir with Christ!

As for psychology, it is garbage. The best one can hope for through psychology is to exchange one neurosis or mental crutch for another which society deems less harmful or disruptive. Psychology is a manipulation of one's thoughts and attention in the attempt to focus on positive outcomes. The problem is that when one's entire mind is sinful and "conformed to this world" (Rom 12:2), trying to manipulate the thinking patterns merely leaves a person in a sinful, errant state of being.

The medical industry doesn't even bother with psychology anymore. Psychiatry (hard-core neuroleptic and antidepressant drugs) is the name of the game now. They just want to drug people into a numbed-out state where they are less likely to hurt themselves or others. What a sorry substitute for regeneration!

Some streams are, some streams are not.

Psychology is the study of individuals, Sociology the Study of Individuals in Groups, Anthropology the study of different cultural groups, Philosophy the study of ideals from all those three

together they make up whats known as the social sciences. They arent quite scientific...but they are far from rubbish, if used properly....as for psychiatry...thats not a social science at all...its a Medical Science, psychiatry is about the treatment of individuals through anti-psychotic drugs usually.

Cant say I know much about them...except to say that most anti-depressents are not Anti-Psychotic drugs, neither do you need to see a psychiatrist to be placed on them. I should know, ive been on Sertraline Hydrochloride since December 5th 2003 :laugh:

Neezar
03-04-2009, 05:53 PM
And I would say that it works quite nicely most of the time.

Tyburn
03-04-2009, 06:06 PM
And I would say that it works quite nicely most of the time.
:laugh: what social sciences...or my medication :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

Fred
03-04-2009, 09:08 PM
Well, even Isaiah used a lump of figs (medicine) along with prayer in order to heal Hezekiah, so there is a place for medicine in improving bodily ailments (and that would include brain neurochemistry).

But, we all know that regeneration is far more important and beneficial for a person than any medicine or therapy. Unlike the Christian Scientists, we don't have to choose between God and medicine. :)

cubsfan47
03-05-2009, 01:36 PM
Being a son (small "s") of God through Christ is all the self-esteem I need. Jn. 1:12, Rom. 8:14. What an undeserved honor it is to be a joint-heir with Christ!

As for psychology, it is garbage. The best one can hope for through psychology is to exchange one neurosis or mental crutch for another which society deems less harmful or disruptive. Psychology is a manipulation of one's thoughts and attention in the attempt to focus on positive outcomes. The problem is that when one's entire mind is sinful and "conformed to this world" (Rom 12:2), trying to manipulate the thinking patterns merely leaves a person in a sinful, errant state of being.

The medical industry doesn't even bother with psychology anymore. Psychiatry (hard-core neuroleptic and antidepressant drugs) is the name of the game now. They just want to drug people into a numbed-out state where they are less likely to hurt themselves or others. What a sorry substitute for regeneration!

As one who got his life back thanks to medication I cannot agree with this statement at all.

Chuck
03-05-2009, 01:45 PM
Psychology is a manipulation of one's thoughts and attention in the attempt to focus on positive outcomes2..

2 questions...

1. What's wrong with that?
2. Isn't that the same as Romans 12:2????

Fred
03-05-2009, 05:05 PM
2 questions...

1. What's wrong with that?
2. Isn't that the same as Romans 12:2????

I think the source of psychology is one thing which is wrong. Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, Alexander Lowen, and guys like that were atheists. Therefore, their insights into the human mind were guided by intuition, and in some cases, the occult. Both fleshly intuition and the occult are opposed to Biblical truth. The science-based work of B.F. Skinner and Ivan Pavlov is more credible, so there may be a slightly more acceptable role for CBT and behaviorial psychology in a Christian's life; but psychoanalysis, Adlerian psychology, NLP, and things like that are no more than New Age schemes which pull a person away from trusting in Christ.

Psychoanalysis, with its blaming of one's parents/early childhood and obsession with sexual themes, is the worst of it. CBT, while better than analysis, merely trades one set of sinful thought patterns for another. The reliance is still on oneself and one's own understanding.

Rom. 12:2 involves the work of the Holy Spirit in renewing one's mind. The work of the Holy Spirit is not manipulative, nor is it psychology. He (the Holy Spirit) brings a genuine transformation rather than a thought-based shell-game. Just IMO.... :)

Tyburn
03-05-2009, 05:45 PM
As one who got his life back thanks to medication I cannot agree with this statement at all.
are you still on meds, or did you get off them...I'm still on mine :unsure-1:

Tyburn
03-05-2009, 05:48 PM
I think the source of psychology is one thing which is wrong. Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, Alexander Lowen, and guys like that were atheists. Therefore, their insights into the human mind were guided by intuition, and in some cases, the occult. Both fleshly intuition and the occult are opposed to Biblical truth. The science-based work of B.F. Skinner and Ivan Pavlov is more credible, so there may be a slightly more acceptable role for CBT and behaviorial psychology in a Christian's life; but psychoanalysis, Adlerian psychology, NLP, and things like that are no more than New Age schemes which pull a person away from trusting in Christ.

Psychoanalysis, with its blaming of one's parents/early childhood and obsession with sexual themes, is the worst of it. CBT, while better than analysis, merely trades one set of sinful thought patterns for another. The reliance is still on oneself and one's own understanding.

Rom. 12:2 involves the work of the Holy Spirit in renewing one's mind. The work of the Holy Spirit is not manipulative, nor is it psychology. He (the Holy Spirit) brings a genuine transformation rather than a thought-based shell-game. Just IMO.... :)
So you would rather have a souless psychology aimed at nothing more then neurones in the brain, and stimulas and response...you think thats more Christian then Psychoanalysis?? :huh:

They are both about as bad as each other...what about Cognative Psychology :)

Fred
03-05-2009, 07:03 PM
Well, none of it is ideal, whether we're talking about psychology or psychiatry; but some people do have verifiable imbalances in neurotransmitter activity in the brain. Drug treatment can help those imbalances.

Far better though, is Christian fellowship, prayer, and service. It gets one's mind off oneself and onto God and one's neighbor. And let's be frank: many people who have "psychological" problems got that way because of years of selfish behavior. Especially illicit drug-abuse---hard drugs and alcohol. Dealing with substance dependence and eliminating it is over half the battle with many folks.

So, I would say: 1) Christianity first. 2) Prescription meds. only if medically indicated because of a chemical imbalance. And then MAYBE 3) some short-term cognitive-behavioral therapy with a Christian counselor to address some specific habits.

Psychoanalysis is garbage. It won't help anyone is any practical way, IMO.

The whole Psychology/Psychiatry thing has gone too far---Ritalin for children; long-term therapy which does absolutely nothing, etc. It's terrible. People should be encouraged to put Christ first and then work hard in a Christ-like way for others. That is the best way to preserve mental health.

Tyburn
03-05-2009, 07:16 PM
1) some people do have verifiable imbalances in neurotransmitter activity in the brain. Drug treatment can help those imbalances.

2) And let's be frank: many people who have "psychological" problems got that way because of years of selfish behavior. Especially illicit drug-abuse---hard drugs and alcohol. Dealing with substance dependence and eliminating it is over half the battle with many folks.

3) So, I would say: 1) Christianity first. 2) Prescription meds. only if medically indicated because of a chemical imbalance. And then MAYBE 3) some short-term cognitive-behavioral therapy with a Christian counselor to address some specific habits.

4) Psychoanalysis is garbage. It won't help anyone is any practical way, IMO.

The whole Psychology/Psychiatry thing has gone too far---Ritalin for children; long-term therapy which does absolutely nothing, etc. It's terrible. People should be encouraged to put Christ first and then work hard in a Christ-like way for others. That is the best way to preserve mental health.
1) most people with mental health issues have chemical imballences of somekind. they need something to correct a biological fault.

2) Thats bollox. You might like to think that to justify your position that they shouldnt be treated, but its a deciet. Let me talk to you about Depression. People can get depressed because they dont get enough exposure to light...how is that anything to do with being selfish?? Some people get reactive Depression...they are depressed for a reason, something is making them unwell, maybe stress, maybe something in their job, maybe something at home. Becoming distressed by ones surroundings or circumstances doesnt always happen because of years of selfish behaviour...what about a guy being made redundant from a job he loved, had done for along time, and feels unable to get a new one? whats about marriage breakdown on the Children of the devorced...bullying at school...?? Another major cause of depression is whats known as "Existential Angst" lets face it, people are unhappy because they are incomplete without GOD, they struggle to know what is true in an age that promotes Moral Relativism, they struggle to choose in a post modern society that is fractured and gives them TOO much choice...they feel small, stupid, lonely, irrelivent...meaningless...

Tell me...are you speaking as someone who has studied Psychology to degree level or has practised as a psychologist? Are you speaking as someone who has suffered some form of mental ill health and been treated either with psychological therapies, counselling, or medication? I ask because this will better help me to understand where you are coming from.....For myself, I fit into both categories...a loooooooong History that goes back to 1996 :unsure-1:

3) all those things I'd aggree with...the hard thing is...with Medication that stabilizes...what to do after that :unsure-1:

4) I'm tempted to aggree...however, some of the theories I think are correct :ninja:

5) well...there is another thing that you arent addressing. In the United States people can ask for perscription drugs...in the United Kingdom (where I am from) you cant "ask" for any perscription...thats for a doctor to TELL you what drugs to have (you can always refuse...but you cant "ask your pharmacist for...." "ask your GP for...." there are ZERO adverts on English TV for ANY of that...when I visited the United States I was shocked and appauled at the drugs companies and their...marketting...marketting of drugs that you shouldnt even know about...unless you either a doctor...or you've been perscribed them.

Fred
03-06-2009, 02:02 AM
LOL, you didn't like the thoughts I gave about depression. Well, I don't have personal experience with depression; but I have studied (not to degree level) about neurotranmission and some of the various DSM disorders (Major Depression, Cyclothymic Disorder, etc.) The bottom line is that in some people, serotonin, norepineprine, or acetylcholine can be out of balance because of bad diet, disease, or drug/alcohol abuse which damages neuronal membranes and thus, neurotransmission. In other people, they may have learned bad habits or ineffective coping skills which facilitate some negative thought patterns.

But, in almost every case, there is a basic loss of equilibrium, hope and focus. Completely deflated or frozen by anxiety. No goal-setting. No focus on activity outside of oneself. I've seen this in some family members. The focus on self is a huge part of the problem with depressives.

Regeneration is, by far, the best answer to that, and I've seen people get better because their prayer life improved and they got busy, working around other active, healthy people. Activity (including strenuous exercise) does a lot to increase neurotransmission, and working hard toward goals slowly repairs the neural pathways in the brain, as well. Staying off excessive booze and hard drugs is crucial, too. Fellowship, prayer, and service can take one a long way toward keeping up the activity level all week, and I've seen those things help depressed people tremendously.

Let's face it: Psychology and Psychiatry over the last 100 years has been a failure. They are a total bust. Few would argue that people, in general, are healthier or more mentally stable now than even a few decades ago. There used to be a time when you gave someone a pep-talk and a kick in the pants, and that's all it was expected to take to get them moving. Now, we have more labels for all the disorders, and more ways to "treat" them, but with abysmal results. Too many people have become comfortable carrying a label for life, instead of looking forward to the day when they are fully recovered. Christians need to do better than that.

Neezar
03-06-2009, 03:18 AM
1) most people with mental health issues have chemical imballences of somekind. they need something to correct a biological fault.


Most? What are you talking about? Are they tested for the chemical imbalances? Or are the tests so expensive that they just give them meds that might correct imbalances and if it works then assume that was the problem? Are there people with the same chemical imbalances that don't have mental issues?

Bonnie
03-06-2009, 03:40 AM
LOL, you didn't like the thoughts I gave about depression. Well, I don't have personal experience with depression; but I have studied (not to degree level) about neurotranmission and some of the various DSM disorders (Major Depression, Cyclothymic Disorder, etc.) The bottom line is that in some people, serotonin, norepineprine, or acetylcholine can be out of balance because of bad diet, disease, or drug/alcohol abuse which damages neuronal membranes and thus, neurotransmission. In other people, they may have learned bad habits or ineffective coping skills which facilitate some negative thought patterns.

But, in almost every case, there is a basic loss of equilibrium, hope and focus. Completely deflated or frozen by anxiety. No goal-setting. No focus on activity outside of oneself. I've seen this in some family members. The focus on self is a huge part of the problem with depressives.

Regeneration is, by far, the best answer to that, and I've seen people get better because their prayer life improved and they got busy, working around other active, healthy people. Activity (including strenuous exercise) does a lot to increase neurotransmission, and working hard toward goals slowly repairs the neural pathways in the brain, as well. Staying off excessive booze and hard drugs is crucial, too. Fellowship, prayer, and service can take one a long way toward keeping up the activity level all week, and I've seen those things help depressed people tremendously.

Let's face it: Psychology and Psychiatry over the last 100 years has been a failure. They are a total bust. Few would argue that people, in general, are healthier or more mentally stable now than even a few decades ago. There used to be a time when you gave someone a pep-talk and a kick in the pants, and that's all it was expected to take to get them moving. Now, we have more labels for all the disorders, and more ways to "treat" them, but with abysmal results. Too many people have become comfortable carrying a label for life, instead of looking forward to the day when they are fully recovered. Christians need to do better than that.

I've definitely seen that in a couple of "close" family members and truly believe, in their cases, that prayer and "focusing" on others more and less on themselves would bring big positive changes to their lives. The problem is getting them to "see" that.

"Too many people have become comfortable carrying a label for life, instead of looking forward to the day when they are fully recovered."--definitely "sig" worthy! :ninja:

*Note: I'm not discounting those who definitely need/require medical and/or drug therapy.

mikthehick
03-06-2009, 06:07 AM
LOL, you didn't like the thoughts I gave about depression. Well, I don't have personal experience with depression; but I have studied (not to degree level) about neurotranmission and some of the various DSM disorders (Major Depression, Cyclothymic Disorder, etc.) The bottom line is that in some people, serotonin, norepineprine, or acetylcholine can be out of balance because of bad diet, disease, or drug/alcohol abuse which damages neuronal membranes and thus, neurotransmission. In other people, they may have learned bad habits or ineffective coping skills which facilitate some negative thought patterns.

But, in almost every case, there is a basic loss of equilibrium, hope and focus. Completely deflated or frozen by anxiety. No goal-setting. No focus on activity outside of oneself. I've seen this in some family members. The focus on self is a huge part of the problem with depressives.

Regeneration is, by far, the best answer to that, and I've seen people get better because their prayer life improved and they got busy, working around other active, healthy people. Activity (including strenuous exercise) does a lot to increase neurotransmission, and working hard toward goals slowly repairs the neural pathways in the brain, as well. Staying off excessive booze and hard drugs is crucial, too. Fellowship, prayer, and service can take one a long way toward keeping up the activity level all week, and I've seen those things help depressed people tremendously.

Let's face it: Psychology and Psychiatry over the last 100 years has been a failure. They are a total bust. Few would argue that people, in general, are healthier or more mentally stable now than even a few decades ago. There used to be a time when you gave someone a pep-talk and a kick in the pants, and that's all it was expected to take to get them moving. Now, we have more labels for all the disorders, and more ways to "treat" them, but with abysmal results. Too many people have become comfortable carrying a label for life, instead of looking forward to the day when they are fully recovered. Christians need to do better than that.

Fred, you should read a Book called "Competant Christian Counseling" by Tim Clinton. He's a professor at my school and President of the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC). I'm looking into becoming a member here soon, as part of my degree program.

I'll be getting a masters in counseling hopefully in 6-7 years then I would love to pursue a PhD in it. That book was for my first counseling class and really changed my negative perspective on couseling as a whole, since I recovered without pathological means in 2007, I KNOW people def don't need to be drugged. It's bad enough when you are out of balance to be given crap by people who don't care (psyciatrists in this instance). Rather, I would love to work without drugging people whenever possible....

anyway, cool thread.

MattHughesRocks
03-06-2009, 08:57 AM
You are hysterical. How do you "know" all this? Or are you "guessing" and "assuming" or just judging everyone because they obviously arent as good as you? And no, I don't have a drug problem.:laugh:


Far better though, is Christian fellowship, prayer, and service. It gets one's mind off oneself and onto God and one's neighbor. And let's be frank: many people who have "psychological" problems got that way because of years of selfish behavior. Especially illicit drug-abuse---hard drugs and alcohol. Dealing with substance dependence and eliminating it is over half the battle with many folks.

Tyburn
03-06-2009, 01:15 PM
1) LOL, you didn't like the thoughts I gave about depression. Well, I don't have personal experience with depression; but I have studied (not to degree level) about neurotranmission and some of the various DSM disorders (Major Depression, Cyclothymic Disorder, etc.) The bottom line is that in some people, serotonin, norepineprine, or acetylcholine can be out of balance because of bad diet, disease, or drug/alcohol abuse which damages neuronal membranes and thus, neurotransmission.

2) In other people, they may have learned bad habits or ineffective coping skills which facilitate some negative thought patterns.

3) But, in almost every case, there is a basic loss of equilibrium, hope and focus. Completely deflated or frozen by anxiety. No goal-setting. No focus on activity outside of oneself. I've seen this in some family members. The focus on self is a huge part of the problem with depressives.

4) Regeneration is, by far, the best answer to that, and I've seen people get better because their prayer life improved and they got busy, working around other active, healthy people. Activity (including strenuous exercise) does a lot to increase neurotransmission, and working hard toward goals slowly repairs the neural pathways in the brain, as well. Staying off excessive booze and hard drugs is crucial, too. Fellowship, prayer, and service can take one a long way toward keeping up the activity level all week, and I've seen those things help depressed people tremendously.

5) Let's face it: Psychology and Psychiatry over the last 100 years has been a failure. They are a total bust.

6) Few would argue that people, in general, are healthier or more mentally stable now than even a few decades ago. There used to be a time when you gave someone a pep-talk and a kick in the pants, and that's all it was expected to take to get them moving. Now, we have more labels for all the disorders, and more ways to "treat" them, but with abysmal results.

7) Too many people have become comfortable carrying a label for life, instead of looking forward to the day when they are fully recovered. Christians need to do better than that.

1) Well I do have extensive personal experience. I was diagnosed with a self destructive form of OCD by a child psychologist in 1996, she gave me away to rid myself of the problem, and it worked!! Then between 2000-2003 I studied at degree level modular social sciences including Psychology, then in 2003 I developed reactive depression to some strange physical symptoms that were eventually described as a psycho-somatic anxiety disorder.

2) Psychologists CAN teach you coping strategies and stuff like that. its not all Freud or Medication you know :rolleyes:

3) The thing about being in a depressive or anxious state (and I do not mean unhappy and stressed, I mean a state of mind which persists unchanged for months, every waking hour, for months, is that your not acting as you normally would. You are not in your normal frame of mind, its a completely different and increadibly scary mindset to be in. Even my memories of the time before the meds is...strange. Looking at it now, I cant understand the decisions I made at points, I cant understand why the same circumstances mean something different to me now, and how they could ever have meant what they did over that period of my life. When you are ill you are not functioning normally, people consider things that they would never otherwise consider, like suicide for example. I dont know if you could say they are completely responsible for their decisions. That is to say, they know the consequences of decisions...but for some reason, ideals that seem foolish to a healthy mind, suddenly seem obvious when in a state like that.

4) there is certainly a lot you can do on your own. For example, there was a gap of three months where the symptoms and the depression began to go away, before it returned and I ended on medication. But I was able to get a grasp of that because I had a safe environment, people who loved me, and I wasnt in work or in education. I could spend several months relaxing and calming myself down. Even then, the symptoms didnt dissapear completely...but when I began work in a new place, the slightest thing could set the whole problem off again...and it did...and the second time it was worse, because there was the added knowledge of the failure of that three months to change anything. I couldnt beat it on my own. So they can "help" but they do not cure or remove...and eventually the longevity of such an illness can develope to make it worse.

5) No they are not, both industries are doing fine.

6) Half the problem if I may be so bold is that if these people got help sooner, there would be so many sick. why do they avoid it? because, particularlly if they are male, its against Societal values to ask for help. Ever wondered WHY people end up on drugs in the first place?? Perhaps if they'd been given support early enough...perhaps if they'd asked for support...but all you do with that sorta statement is reinforce the stigma. For all you knowm, a manic depressive is lurking here, reading this...and thinks "he's right, im just being a hypercondriac, I just need a swift boot up the arse" and goes about his business rather then asking for the help he needs. :angry: if you dont have personal experience you dont know what its like...you cant imagine something as hellish as mental ill health...it isnt a case of being glum, it isnt a case of not doing enough...I pray you never have to encounter it first hand...because if you do it would change your whole outlook on life.

7) what makes you think GOD will heal them??? What makes you think GOD isnt working through psychiatry and psychology?? Can GOD only work through the Church...is he limited to only helping Christians in a Fellowship group??

and what makes you so sure he's going to heal every ailment a GODfearing Christian has? Does he promise good health?? does he even promise happiness on earth??

You need to understand he is a King, that means he does what he wants, when he wants, as he wants it. If it pleases him to heal someone he will, if it pleases him rather to watch them grow through trail, or to help others by their example under a great burden...then he may never heal them. He promises eternal life after death...he doesnt promise good health or happiness....you shouldnt be leading people to ASSUME that GOD will automatically heal them to inspire them with hope...because you are NOT GOD, and he might not decide to honour YOUR plan. You may encourage and pray with/for them...but never tell someone that GOD will definately instantly heal them...you are not an Apostle, you are just a Disciple, GOD is not half as active as he was, and it will be a withdrawal that happens more and more as we head towards the Tribulation.

One thing I learned in strategic Studies...if a Land invasion fails against the enemy, then an Air Offensive might be the only way to ensure success...but before you can launch an air offensive you must withdraw your own troops from the ground and fight, lest you kill THEM aswell as the enemy. There are Scholars who believe that GOD is slowly over time withdrawing his Spirit from creation, ready for the final assult.

cubsfan47
03-06-2009, 02:15 PM
are you still on meds, or did you get off them...I'm still on mine :unsure-1:

Still on medication. I have a major physical in two weeks at which point my doctor and I will discuss transitioning off.

My experience is that it may take both medication and other forms of help for a complete recovery.

I now know that I had a hereditary predisposition toward depression. My mother told me some family history before she passed. That set the stage.

A diagnosis of cancer pushed me over the edge. Well I am now considered officially cured from that disease but the memory lingers on.

There has been spiritual growth too, but that didn't really begin until I was more stable emotionally. I firmly believe that we were given modern medicine to help some of us move closer to Him. It's worked for me. One of these days I may post my personal testimony. It's been an interesting journey; I would characterize my self now as a charismatic Catholic.

So we have evangelicals, orthodox Anglicans like Tyburn, some like myself, also Calvinists and who knows what else. I believe we can learn from each other.

That said, I do believe that a lot of this contemporary self esteem movement is pure and utter you know what. A lot of these education programs are being run by totally unqualified people and have caused more harm than good. I believe the "self esteem" mantra is used so that people can avoid the more difficult search for what the true problem is in many cases.

Tyburn
03-06-2009, 06:06 PM
Most? What are you talking about? Are they tested for the chemical imbalances? Or are the tests so expensive that they just give them meds that might correct imbalances and if it works then assume that was the problem? Are there people with the same chemical imbalances that don't have mental issues?
No, as I understand it, too much or too little seratonin creates the illness, and then the illness is reinforced, the extra seratonin, or the too little seratonin, or the speed at which the chemical is released or absorbed becomes a permanent shift. Whilst the body is adjusting there is control over it, but that control soon goes as the shift in production becomes the new homeostatic norm.

The way they did it with me was, they had no knowledge what was causing the symptoms, but they did no I was only depressed because of the symptoms at that time. Thats reactive depression. They discovered I was depressed when they got me to do an extremely long and sensative survay the results told them what I was.

Now I was issued with Sertraline for a particular reason. Until they knew that the symptoms were the production of either an injury or a primary illness, they assumed, based on the tests thus far, that the symptoms were psycho-somatic...thus I needed to be relaxed. Sertraline is an anti-anxiety drug as well, it killed two birds with one stone. Later they had me seen a Neurologist, and have an MRI scan to proove there was no injury...thats when the primary illness was diagnosed as an anxiety disorder.

I didnt want to go see the Doctor. I was registered with a doctor in Harrogate but living in London. She was sorting out a date for my MRI, meanwhile I was only on anti-nausea tablets because I had trouble eating and felt sick and dizzy all the time. When the symptoms came back, I was in a quandary because I wanted to stay with my doctor up north so that I could have my MRI...if I changed Doctors I'd have to re-arrange the whole procedure and i'd go back to the loooooonnnnnnng que waiting for MRI (I mean MONTHS!) The Second Onset was October 1st 2003....I didnt go to the doctors and get put on meds until December 5th....but the worst time was December 10th-January 12th....MY GOD the side effects of Sertraline are NASTY, REALLY NASTY! So bad, I even had a spell of confusion over christmas, and their are days in my memory that are kinda missing in retrospect.

I hasten to add that I NEVER had a single day off sick, or missed a single lecture at University whilst I was depressed...I am NOT advocating people have time off work or study....plenty of people use depression as an excuse to have months off work in England....I never had a single day :blink:

Tyburn
03-06-2009, 06:19 PM
1) Still on medication. I have a major physical in two weeks at which point my doctor and I will discuss transitioning off.

2) My experience is that it may take both medication and other forms of help for a complete recovery.

3) I now know that I had a hereditary predisposition toward depression. My mother told me some family history before she passed. That set the stage.

4) A diagnosis of cancer pushed me over the edge. Well I am now considered officially cured from that disease but the memory lingers on.

5) There has been spiritual growth too, but that didn't really begin until I was more stable emotionally. I firmly believe that we were given modern medicine to help some of us move closer to Him. It's worked for me. One of these days I may post my personal testimony. It's been an interesting journey; I would characterize my self now as a charismatic Catholic.

So we have evangelicals, orthodox Anglicans like Tyburn, some like myself, also Calvinists and who knows what else. I believe we can learn from each other.

6) That said, I do believe that a lot of this contemporary self esteem movement is pure and utter you know what. A lot of these education programs are being run by totally unqualified people and have caused more harm than good. I believe the "self esteem" mantra is used so that people can avoid the more difficult search for what the true problem is in many cases.
1) I am only on the drugs 5 days out of every 7, and over holidays I half the dose. I like to think that makes me less...dependant on them... :laugh:

2) Indeed. For example, now that the drugs leave me alright, I can get to sorting out the issues that caused my anxiety in the first place. Solving that will solve the symptoms, solving them will eliminate the depression over a long course of time. I've come well up on this, learned a lot, and doing very well indeed.

3) My Mother has suffered from depression in her teenage years and infact after my Birth.

4) because depression is chemical, even if its a reaction to something, once the depression mode is the NORMAL Homeostatic base for the brain its self sufficient...you can remove the trigger and the bloody depression continues...hopefully though with time KNOWING that the trigger is gone you can use the drugs to give you back control and reverse the homsostatic norm back to...the real norm :)

5) I went through spiritual change aswell. When the symptoms first hit I turned to the church for support. It built me back up and with time and freedom to relax for several months I was beating both symptoms and depression.

When the depression returned I was convinced I was going to die. That changes you outlook on life when you think you dont have very long left to live. You become aware of your mortality and if you aint not so strong, that can be crippling also.

When I first got on Medication I decided that as GOD had given me back my life I shouldnt waste it this time...soooo I indulged in some increadible sin :laugh: ...later I faced quite a hard time, unrelated to the sin, but it was something that crushed my faith in The Church as an establishment...can help thinking it might have been GODs justice...I used a great good for evil, he let a great good then commit evil against me....perhaps now I know how he felt :unsure-1:

6) I dont know much about positive self talk and self esteem like that. I do know that whilst Psychology has humanistic branches...as a social science, its far from bollox :cool:

I think you are right about searching for the cause. I think the Self Esteem Mantra is the Humanist equivilent of the Christian "I dont lable myself" approach. The first covers up the original problem and with some luck it will become a conditioned response that might overturn the trauma that caused the problem. The second is denial on a grotesque level for me. To attach a lable to yourself brings some clarity to the situation. You cant deny the problem by claiming if you dont call yourself a depressive, you suddenly looooose the depression...its a nice theory, and I believe you might be able to condition yourself in the early stages for it to work...but on the grande scheme of things...people need to learn to be REAL...GOD excepts and loves you for who you are. Dont try hide it, dont deny it...face it, learn from it, and with His Help change it. Dont deny your sin, recognise them for what they are, call them out. Dont bury them with a silly saying, or pretend you dont sin. If you dont first accept the issue, you will never change. This isnt about continuing to live in sin, or with problems, its about getting rid of those problems and sins...not just for a day but forever. Know thyself, and Know most of all the Enemy within thyself...for you cant fight against an Enemy unless you are wellversed in its game. Do you follow??

You cant be successful if you dont understand your enemy. thats the fatal flaw in the post-modern concept of warfare, its true on all levels from macro-to-microcosmic

Neezar
03-06-2009, 07:47 PM
No, as I understand it, too much or too little seratonin creates the illness, and then the illness is reinforced, the extra seratonin, or the too little seratonin, or the speed at which the chemical is released or absorbed becomes a permanent shift. Whilst the body is adjusting there is control over it, but that control soon goes as the shift in production becomes the new homeostatic norm.


Well, I didn't know that it could become a permanent shift. I will have to check in to that. See, the way that I understand it, it is like the seratonin in your brain compared to oil in your engine. Things physical or hormonal or emotional (stress) can cause your seratonin level to get out of whack. When you obtain the levels back to normal range then the symptoms should start to aleviate if that was the basis of your symptoms. Well, just like oil in a car if you don't know were your leak is coming from or what is causing then you will just have to keep adding oil. The problem never leaves. Thus, you need to dig for the leak or the cause of the unbalance and work on that. At least, this is the theory that I was taught. And I was taught that it was a theory because there are so many if's, and's, and buts, so many exceptions to the rules. Some people's seratonins levels are unbalanced for long periods of time and they have no symptoms at all. Sometimes they only have insomnia or one or two other symptoms. And some people's seratonin level will change and eliminate symptoms simply by changing their diet (and this isn't dependant on the amount of unbalance either.) While some other people have these symptoms and take the meds with no change at all. The problem is that it isn't an exact (rocket, lol) science. Therefore, I do agree with Fred that their must be more! The meds alone aren't enough in my opinion.

You have to see a counselor once a month here and be reassessed to get your meds. Dave, how often do you have to see a counselor and/or doctor for your meds?

Neezar
03-06-2009, 07:49 PM
I didnt want to go see the Doctor. I was registered with a doctor in Harrogate but living in London. She was sorting out a date for my MRI, meanwhile I was only on anti-nausea tablets because I had trouble eating and felt sick and dizzy all the time. When the symptoms came back, I was in a quandary because I wanted to stay with my doctor up north so that I could have my MRI...if I changed Doctors I'd have to re-arrange the whole procedure and i'd go back to the loooooonnnnnnng que waiting for MRI (I mean MONTHS!) The Second Onset was October 1st 2003....I didnt go to the doctors and get put on meds until December 5th....but the worst time was December 10th-January 12th....MY GOD the side effects of Sertraline are NASTY, REALLY NASTY! So bad, I even had a spell of confusion over christmas, and their are days in my memory that are kinda missing in retrospect.



Damn public health services!


:laugh:

Tyburn
03-06-2009, 08:41 PM
Well, I didn't know that it could become a permanent shift. I will have to check in to that. See, the way that I understand it, it is like the seratonin in your brain compared to oil in your engine. Things physical or hormonal or emotional (stress) can cause your seratonin level to get out of whack. When you obtain the levels back to normal range then the symptoms should start to aleviate if that was the basis of your symptoms. Well, just like oil in a car if you don't know were your leak is coming from or what is causing then you will just have to keep adding oil. The problem never leaves. Thus, you need to dig for the leak or the cause of the unbalance and work on that. At least, this is the theory that I was taught. And I was taught that it was a theory because there are so many if's, and's, and buts, so many exceptions to the rules. Some people's seratonins levels are unbalanced for long periods of time and they have no symptoms at all. Sometimes they only have insomnia or one or two other symptoms. And some people's seratonin level will change and eliminate symptoms simply by changing their diet (and this isn't dependant on the amount of unbalance either.) While some other people have these symptoms and take the meds with no change at all. The problem is that it isn't an exact (rocket, lol) science. Therefore, I do agree with Fred that their must be more! The meds alone aren't enough in my opinion.

You have to see a counselor once a month here and be reassessed to get your meds. Dave, how often do you have to see a counselor and/or doctor for your meds?


Firstly, dont forget in America you can request to be put on Anti-Depressents. In England, the Doctor alone decides what you should have. I never needed to see a counsellor...my Medication is dispatch in about two month cycles...I guess I see the doctor around then...but sometimes I can do a repeat perscription....I dont see the doctor then.

Last time I visited the doctor was November last year when I nearly died coz of that stupid peanut :angry: :laugh:

Tyburn
03-06-2009, 08:43 PM
Damn public health services!


:laugh:
:laugh: Do you know how long it took? The symptoms began around April 8th...it was Mid April the year after by the time I saw the Neurologist and JUNE that year I finally got my MRI....

...I would have already been dead if it was something serious by then :mellow:

cubsfan47
03-07-2009, 03:58 PM
Well, I didn't know that it could become a permanent shift. I will have to check in to that. See, the way that I understand it, it is like the seratonin in your brain compared to oil in your engine. Things physical or hormonal or emotional (stress) can cause your seratonin level to get out of whack. When you obtain the levels back to normal range then the symptoms should start to aleviate if that was the basis of your symptoms. Well, just like oil in a car if you don't know were your leak is coming from or what is causing then you will just have to keep adding oil. The problem never leaves. Thus, you need to dig for the leak or the cause of the unbalance and work on that. At least, this is the theory that I was taught. And I was taught that it was a theory because there are so many if's, and's, and buts, so many exceptions to the rules. Some people's seratonins levels are unbalanced for long periods of time and they have no symptoms at all. Sometimes they only have insomnia or one or two other symptoms. And some people's seratonin level will change and eliminate symptoms simply by changing their diet (and this isn't dependant on the amount of unbalance either.) While some other people have these symptoms and take the meds with no change at all. The problem is that it isn't an exact (rocket, lol) science. Therefore, I do agree with Fred that their must be more! The meds alone aren't enough in my opinion.

You have to see a counselor once a month here and be reassessed to get your meds. Dave, how often do you have to see a counselor and/or doctor for your meds?

The medical community is not in complete agreement about the permanence of a shift; my doctor says maybe so but we can't be sure yet. There are several books, including the original "Listening to Prozac" which include discussion of this issue.
However, if the chemical balance of the brain has been changed by trauma, why not aid the reversal process through appropriate use of medication?

On the spiritual side, I think a person has to want to get better. We can't engage in a pity party in our grief. For mental illness, as with any other cross we are given to bear, if we ask Him for help we will get it.

As I read about various MMA fighters and how they have faced up to struggles in their own life, I have been inspired. I came to following MMA as a distraction from my grief. I have stayed because it helped me along the path to joy.

I give thanks for Matt, Rich, and all the others who, whether they realized it or not, have given hope.

Peace.:)

Fred
03-09-2009, 10:51 PM
I like Cubsfan47's post. "On the spiritual side, I think a person has to want to get better." That is a salient point. A person also has to have the faith to get better----the faith that God can and wants to help that person; and the faith that God in Christ will use unlimited means to help that person if he or she is WILLING to be helped. The bottom line is that people either believe that or they don't. The ones who don't will turn to one ineffective treatment after another in a perpetual, downward spiral.

Will a deep analysis of motives, behaviors, feelings, or one's own overall self-assessment help? No, it won't. "The heart is deceitful and desperately wicked above all things. Who can know it?" All of the prevailing psychological theories are interesting and intricate; but few of them are testable or falsifiable with any reliability. Therapy for anything other than for modifying a very limited, specific set of habits is not something which can give measurable results.

Psychology is a huge money-maker for those in the industry; but it does little for its "patients".

Copernicus and Galileo showed us that the earth revolves around the sun, and not vice-versa. Unhealthy people need to learn that the individual human being is not, properly, the center of his own existence. That is the lie of modern "self-esteem" and of psychology.

Miss Foxy
03-09-2009, 11:01 PM
Still on medication. I have a major physical in two weeks at which point my doctor and I will discuss transitioning off.

My experience is that it may take both medication and other forms of help for a complete recovery.

I now know that I had a hereditary predisposition toward depression. My mother told me some family history before she passed. That set the stage.

A diagnosis of cancer pushed me over the edge. Well I am now considered officially cured from that disease but the memory lingers on.

There has been spiritual growth too, but that didn't really begin until I was more stable emotionally. I firmly believe that we were given modern medicine to help some of us move closer to Him. It's worked for me. One of these days I may post my personal testimony. It's been an interesting journey; I would characterize my self now as a charismatic Catholic.

So we have evangelicals, orthodox Anglicans like Tyburn, some like myself, also Calvinists and who knows what else. I believe we can learn from each other.

That said, I do believe that a lot of this contemporary self esteem movement is pure and utter you know what. A lot of these education programs are being run by totally unqualified people and have caused more harm than good. I believe the "self esteem" mantra is used so that people can avoid the more difficult search for what the true problem is in many cases. Well put hon. Many people are blindly ignorant when it comes to mental health. I hope all works out for you and be careful when you transition off the meds ok.. Good luck!! xoxo

Tyburn
03-09-2009, 11:37 PM
1) That is a salient point. A person also has to have the faith to get better----the faith that God can and wants to help that person; and the faith that God in Christ will use unlimited means to help that person if he or she is WILLING to be helped.

2) The bottom line is that people either believe that or they don't. The ones who don't will turn to one ineffective treatment after another in a perpetual, downward spiral. Will a deep analysis of motives, behaviors, feelings, or one's own overall self-assessment help? No, it won't. "The heart is deceitful and desperately wicked above all things. Who can know it?" All of the prevailing psychological theories are interesting and intricate; but few of them are testable or falsifiable with any reliability.Therapy for anything other than for modifying a very limited, specific set of habits is not something which can give measurable results. Psychology is a huge money-maker for those in the industry; but it does little for its "patients".

3) Copernicus and Galileo showed us that the earth revolves around the sun, and not vice-versa. Unhealthy people need to learn that the individual human being is not, properly, the center of his own existence.

4) That is the lie of modern "self-esteem" and of psychology.

1) may I warn you once again against creating a personal agenda for GOD, he doesnt need you. Christ doesnt heal everyone. Thats just a fact, even Saint Paul had some thorn in his side that many scholars believe was something based on health that GOD refused to take away. GOD does whats in our best interest, that doesnt always mean Heal...the two are only synomous with foolish Pentecostals and extreme evangelicals who believe if you arent healed its your own fault for not praying hard enough or having enough faith. THAT can make someone with mental health WORSE. The Church and many Christians are at times extremely POOR representatives of a Monarch, the American Pentecostal Church of the Last Harvest for example when my illness began, did try and convince me it was because I wasnt really a Christian after all. Who are they that can read a mans heart??

Perhaps its because they are not used to a Monarch. See GOD lays down the ground rules, and you follow. You dont tell GOD what he can and cant do in a situation. You dont make promises on his behalf outside of his direct power. You dont twist his Word to make it your agenda. Its not a democrasy where you have ANY say whatsoever in the preceedings. You may ask, and you may plea, for begging is what it really is...but you cant make him do anything. If he doesnt want to heal someone you have to learn to TRUST him rather then your own notion of knowledge. Learn that if you think I am without Faith, I strongly believe YOU are without Trust.

I have Faith that GOD knows best and will do what is right. I dont need to listen to your surmons on how Psychology is evil and those who take Medication have no faith...which is what under your language this boils down to. I dont need to see men healed to know My GOD, I pity you if you do. GOD is not a lucky charm, and he doesnt need to proove anything to you. He doesnt need to follow your instructions, any more then anyone else here should!

2) You professed to never being a patient...how would you know? I think its worse in the United States because all the "patients" pretend to be Doctors and bloody self perscribe, the TV tells them what they need to ask for. Thats an absolute Crime. Your health system in the United States for dealing with perscriptions is not only a joke, its actually harmful. No wonder you have dependancy issues when anyone can take any pill they like thanks to TV advertising.

But once again...dont brand the rest of the First World with the same brush. Universal Health care doesnt mean universal access to drugs. The US has one policy, we have the other!

3) You must gain self knowledge, its about ballence. Know thyself, but dont get sucked in. you anger me because I have to repeat myself. If Psychology didnt work I'd probably be dead by now. Do you want to go and read back in the thread to find the answer why to that?

4) used properly its effective, used ineffectually its harmful. That doesnt make it an outright lie. GOD can actually use Psychology, he isnt limited to working through people like you!

Fred
03-10-2009, 01:30 AM
I guess I don't understand why anyone would be angry about another person's perspective. I'm not angry about yours. If what another person is doing works for them, then that person should be confident in that. I'll give an example: I get up early in the mornings (5 - 6 am) and run 1 - 3 miles every day. I've had a couple of people say "You're crazy!!" for doing that. They say they would never exercise that early in the morning. Does it make me angry that they disagree with that regimen and would never do it? No. It works for me. To each his own.

I've already admitted that my own direct experience with Psychiatry and Psychology is limited (although I have studied the subject in the past). It would be great if others could admit the same. We all have very limited experience contrasted with all that there is to know in life, so people trying to trump others in the Experience Department is pointless.

I have a lot of experience in being healthy and being around people who are healthy. I have some limited experience with great people who happened to have some challenges with depression, etc., and I can relate what worked for them. Faith worked. Pessimism didn't. Psychiatry (drugs) had some effectiveness. Therapy mostly didn't.

So, in my opinion (and it is just my opinion), psychology is garbage. Another person might say that my morning exercise is garbage (or a waste of time, or whatever). A third person might say that faith in Christ is a waste of time, and I would calmly disagree. There's no cause for anger because of another's perspective.

Tyburn
03-10-2009, 01:41 AM
I guess I don't understand why anyone would be angry about another person's perspective. I'm not angry about yours. If what another person is doing works for them, then that person should be confident in that. I'll give an example: I get up early in the mornings (5 - 6 am) and run 1 - 3 miles every day. I've had a couple of people say "You're crazy!!" for doing that. They say they would never exercise that early in the morning. Does it make me angry that they disagree with that regimen and would never do it? No. It works for me. To each his own.

I've already admitted that my own direct experience with Psychiatry and Psychology is limited (although I have studied the subject in the past). It would be great if others could admit the same. We all have very limited experience contrasted with all that there is to know in life, so people trying to trump others in the Experience Department is pointless.

I have a lot of experience in being healthy and being around people who are healthy. I have some limited experience with great people who happened to have some challenges with depression, etc., and I can relate what worked for them. Faith worked. Pessimism didn't. Psychiatry (drugs) had some effectiveness. Therapy mostly didn't.

So, in my opinion (and it is just my opinion), psychology is garbage. Another person might say that my morning exercise is garbage (or a waste of time, or whatever). A third person might say that faith in Christ is a waste of time, and I would calmly disagree. There's no cause for anger because of another's perspective.

Firstly, its healthy to be passionate about your views. If someone insulted Christ infront of me, I'd probably be angered, just like I would if someone insulted anyone I feel loyal to.

Secondly, your giving out advise and making wild and broad stereotypes, and thats not very helpeful for people if they are mentally ill and dont know what to do about it.

Thirdly, you aregue your point without even addressing my counters, you simply repeat yourself forever clarifying your version of events. I understand where you are coming from, but you give no reasons as to why you think what you do, nor do you examine my cases that would disprove or cause your theories concern.

That gets me frustrated. "to each his own" is a FAR bigger lie then anything Psychology ever came up with. You cant get more Humanistic then a phrase like that. That phrase is WHY half the people ARE mentally Ill as I tried to explain before. "To each his own" says that there is no FIXED and ABSOLUTE truth...without which people dont know where to turn, if they arent blown away with the fragmentation and overwhelemed with choices on how they should live their lives, they end up likely making the wrong decisions. I do not believe in Moral Relativity...and no Christian should entertain such thoughts. There is but one Moral Code of Value, and there is a definate and absolute Truth expressed through The Word

He is called Jesus Christ, and His Word is the Bible (infact often the references of "logos" are used interchangably, between Christ and the Bible.)

I'd like you to listen to this track. It explains everything perfectly. This is what post-modernity has done to the world. It has removed the ideal of a Fixed Morality, and thats detrimental to our being. She's being Sarcastic by the way, proving a fantastic point about "each to their own"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-wGMlSuX_c

Hughes_GOAT
03-10-2009, 06:26 AM
just like I would if someone insulted anyone I feel loyal to.



like me? :cool:

Tyburn
03-10-2009, 01:10 PM
like me? :cool:
:laugh:

No...I was thinking like Jens Pulver...or Nathan Rosario...or Michelle, or Denise.

Your different...because you actually shine best in a verbal sparring match, so if someone insults you I'll wait to see your response, then try to hop in on the action :ashamed: Your more like Rampage in that respect...say Andreas...can you dance?

Neezar
03-10-2009, 02:21 PM
Firstly, its healthy to be passionate about your views.

:w00t: We should be in good shape then, Dave.




:laugh:

Llamafighter
03-10-2009, 02:33 PM
My biggest problem with esteem is when it ehfogs up my ehglasses.
:huh:

Neezar
03-10-2009, 02:33 PM
The medical community is not in complete agreement about the permanence of a shift; my doctor says maybe so but we can't be sure yet. There are several books, including the original "Listening to Prozac" which include discussion of this issue.
However, if the chemical balance of the brain has been changed by trauma, why not aid the reversal process through appropriate use of medication?

On the spiritual side, I think a person has to want to get better. We can't engage in a pity party in our grief. For mental illness, as with any other cross we are given to bear, if we ask Him for help we will get it.

As I read about various MMA fighters and how they have faced up to struggles in their own life, I have been inspired. I came to following MMA as a distraction from my grief. I have stayed because it helped me along the path to joy.

I give thanks for Matt, Rich, and all the others who, whether they realized it or not, have given hope.

Peace.:)

I hope I didn't give the impression that I wasn't all for medications because that isn't true. When I have a psych patient I can't get to the doctor fast enough to ask for medications. (:ninja: :laugh: ) However, I see so many cases where a prescription is written and the patient virtually forgotten. In most cases meds alone just won't do the trick. And way too often these people think that medication is going to 'fix' everything.

Chuck
03-10-2009, 02:55 PM
My biggest problem with esteem is when it ehfogs up my ehglasses.
:huh:

You know I say.. I say... I say why didn't I think of that???
:happy0198: :happy0198:

Tyburn
03-10-2009, 04:14 PM
:w00t: We should be in good shape then, Dave.




:laugh::laugh:

Well I feel healthy...but then I did take my sertraline this morning...you :huh:

:laugh:

Hughes_GOAT
03-10-2009, 04:37 PM
:laugh:

No...I was thinking like Jens Pulver...or Nathan Rosario...or Michelle, or Denise.

Your different...because you actually shine best in a verbal sparring match, so if someone insults you I'll wait to see your response, then try to hop in on the action :ashamed: Your more like Rampage in that respect...say Andreas...can you dance?

of course i can dance.....

Tyburn
03-10-2009, 06:17 PM
of course i can dance.....
:laugh: I bet you cant dance aswell as Quinton though :ninja:

County Mike
03-10-2009, 06:35 PM
We can dance if we want to
But leave your friends behind
Because your friends don't dance
And if they don't dance
Well, they're no friends of mine.

Neezar
03-10-2009, 06:36 PM
We can dance if we want to
But leave your friends behind
Because your friends don't dance
And if they don't dance
Well, they're no friends of mine.

:laugh: