I grew up in a Christian household. It was church not only on Sundays, but Wednesday and Friday nights as well.
I believed with a fervent passion that comes with being sheltered from everything but church. Everything would be fine as long as God and I were square.
My mother’s philosophy was impressed upon me from early on: If you are sad, pray. If you are angry, pray. If you are happy, give thanks in prayer. Everything in life was a direct reflection of the quality of my relationship with God.
I was told God brings joy, so I told myself I was joyful. God heals, I convinced myself I could heal my deep sadness by prayer.
If I was still sad, I wasn’t praying enough.
Fast forward to now and I am no longer a Christian. I look back and want so badly to tell that lost teenage girl what’s really going on.
It’s not from a lack of disciplined and passionate prayer that I was sad and down so often. I didn’t fail as a Christian.
In reality, Christianity failed me.
It’s discouraging to know that there are those out there that believe the solution to their mental illness could be solved by a simple belief, and that they aren’t serious enough…or that a divine being would allow them to feel this way.
My hope is someone like me, reads this and can understand a little more about their mental health…& that they can find some help outside of the restrictions of a religious belief.
Mental health is a real thing.
And there are real treatments.