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I was depressed during most of my childhood
I was depressed during most of my childhood. My parents drank heavily, and my father was verbally and physically abusive to all of us. Although I was a good student and a fine musician, I always felt I had to do more—if I were a better kid, maybe my family and home life would get better, and maybe my parents would approve of me. Early, I came to believe I would forever be ugly, stupid, and inadequate.
I found alcohol, marijuana, and boys all at about the same time, at about age thirteen. I enjoyed getting drunk and stoned with my friends, and if a boy was interested in me, especially an older one, I felt that I mattered to someone. When I wasn't dating, I was depressed. Relationships themselves became a type of addiction—even unhappy or abusive ones.
During my second year in college my schoolwork overwhelmed me; I unwisely signed up for an extremely heavy course load. After a boyfriend broke up with me, I habitually cut myself with broken glass or razors. Because of this, I was temporarily admitted to the mental ward of a nearby hospital to be treated for depression and self-destructive behavior. Eventually I moved to another state where I became financially independent and finished my education. I saw a psychologist regularly for the next five years. I believed my past was preventing me from leading a normal life.
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from the Editors
The right to be alive
William E. Moody
Of wars, reconciliations, and brotherly love
Liberation from superstitious fear
Martin K. Budu-Kwatiah
by the Right Reverend Desmond Tutu
Happiness and the healing of depression
Marvin J. Charwat
Elizabeth Keyes Williams
Richard C. Bergenheim
Dash—in God's care!
Christopher Haber Graythen with contributions from Elaine F. Faller
About ten years ago a growth appeared on my chest
Francis Marion Cummings