Coming Clean

Today I told my Sunday morning Bible Study about my illness. Most, if not all, of them knew I am sick. They didn’t know much about my illness. Now they do.

It came as a total surprise, even to me. I was grasping for something to talk about as we finished up our summer study last week. I talked about Pr. Peperkorn’s book and related some of my experiences with his. It opened a door to talk about depression and how it affects clergy, especially how it still affects me.

I was surprised at how well they took the news. One member asked to lead a prayer after the study. He prayed for me…almost in tears. Same with everyone else. Never before have I received more hugs in church than I did today. It felt good.

It doesn’t bother me to “tell my story”. If one person finds wellness through this blog or through someone else talking about depression and anxiety, then my work is done. I’m glad to have the opportunity to talk about facing one’s fears and admitting an illness.

-KT

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6 Responses to “Coming Clean”

  1. I appreciate you sharing your story. It helps all of us who have similar struggles. I’ve learned when I’m not feeling well, it helps to read other people’s stories. It’s good to know that you’re not alone.

    Pax.

    Bryan

  2. Good for you! I’m glad it turned out well.

    Whether to go public is a tricky subject. I hesitate to say that every depressed person should or must be open about their situation, because the last thing someone in the midst of depression needs is more pressure, stress, or guilt. People are free to share their story if and when it feels right, if they think it will help them. Perhaps some people are better off keeping it quiet. But it’s nice to hear about times where someone chooses to share and receives a supportive response. Your people responded with love. Christ be praised!

  3. KT,

    Thanks for sharing this story. I, too, am a pastor who suffers from major depression that has twice required hospitalization. The congregation I serve has been very gracious, although not all congregations are. You are in my prayers and know that you are not alone in your struggles.

    In Christ,
    Lee

  4. How blessed you are with a gracious and caring congregation! I’m happy for you that you were able to talk about your illness and receive support.

    mp

  5. Believe me, Mrs. P., my flock treat me better than I deserve. I am beyond blessed. I pray the same for your husband one day soon.

  6. I’m glad that you were able to come clean with your congregation and that many of them are supportive.

    I too am struggling with going “public” with my depression. I am not sure whether or not to share with my coworkers (I’m a lutheran school teacher). I worry how they will respond. I’m afraid that they are not going to be very understanding. Sometimes I feel that people believe that I can just snap out of it or that it’s a sign of weak faith. I worry that this is how some of these people will few me and my situation. One of my coworkers (she’s also my closest friend) knows about my depression, my being on medication, and about my going to see a counselor every few weeks. We even often talk about it. She understanding. She doesn’t view of it as a negative thing. She doesn’t think it makes me a poor Christian. I hope that some day I can share with my coworkers. That I can ask them to pray for me and the difficulties I’m going through in regards to my depression.

    Thank you for sharing your story. As others have said, it does help to read about the situations that others are going through. It lets me know that I’m not alone. Take care and God bless.

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