Secondary Depression in Childhood

I am her...

The cause of secondary depression in childhood is the absorbed emotional pain from a loved one suffering from chronic trauma, abuse or neglect. Children are emotionally connected to their mother in-utero – what she feels, they feel. They are emotional sponges and when a loved one is in chronic emotional pain they suffer just as deeply as if the pain was their own.

Many children become highly empathetic at a young age and highly sensitive to the suffering of others.



Be Thankful

Be thankful to those who mistreated you, for they have showed you how not to live your life.

Be thankful to those who betrayed you. It is because of them that you have learned the power that comes from the act of forgiveness.

Be thankful to those who refused to help you in times of need. It is because of them you have learned how to do it all by yourself.

Be thankful for the difficult times, for they have showed you how strong you can be.

Be thankful for those who labeled, judged and criticized you harshly. It is because of them you have learned that your value and self-worth come from yourself and not from others.

Be thankful to those who gave you no love. It is because of them that you have learned to look for love and approval within yourself.

Be thankful for the many limits that were imposed on you. It is because of them you have learned to break free from all the past conditioning and create your own reality and your own rules.

Be thankful for you past mistakes and failures. It is because of them that you have learned how not to do things. It is because of them that you have learned what works and what doesn’t.

Be thankful for both the good and bad experiences life has sent your way. It is because of these experiences that you have learned some of life’s most valuable lessons…”

~ Luminita D. Saviuc


The Gift of Presence, the Perils of Advice

Now in our mid-seventies, my wife and I have no imminent need for assisted living or nursing care. But the house we live in is, by definition, a two-person residential facility for the aging. Here at what we fondly call The Home, it’s not uncommon for one of us to try “improve” the other’s quality of life by offering “extra services.” Unfortunately, those services often take the form of advice.

A few years ago, my wife gave me some advice that struck me as — how shall I say? — superfluous. Remembering our experience with my mother, I said, “Could I pay a little less this month?” To this day, that line gives us a chance to laugh instead of getting defensive when one of us attempts, as both of us do now and then, to give the other unsolicited and unwanted “help.”

Advice-giving comes naturally to our species, and is mostly done with good intent. But in my experience, the driver behind a lot of advice has as much to do with self-interest as interest in the other’s needs — and some advice can end up doing more harm than good.

Last week I got a call from a man who’d recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. He’d emailed his bad news to a few family members and friends, one of whom had come over right away. “How are you feeling?” his friend asked. “Well, as I said in my email, I’m feeling amazingly at peace with all this. I’m not worried about what lies ahead.”

The friend replied, “Look, you need to get a second opinion. At the same time, you should start exploring complementary medicine. You should also sign up for a meditation program, and I know a good book that can get you started down that path.”

I asked my caller how that response had made him feel. “I’m sure my friend meant well,” he said, “but his advice left me less at peace.”

I told him I’d have felt the same way, and offered this image: Imagine that I need support with a serious problem, when along comes a guy with advanced CPR certification. He’s so eager to show off his skills that he isn’t able to hear my true need. Instead, he starts administering chest compressions and “rescue breathing,” even though I’m perfectly able to breathe for myself. Now I have another big problem as I try to fight off the “helper” who’s smothering me.

I asked my caller how he would have felt if his friend had simply said, “How great that you’re at peace! Tell me more.” “That would have been wonderful,” he replied. “But everyone I talked to had advice for me, including a relative who said I needed to join her church before it was too late.”

I asked how he’d been feeling recently — he said he’d been feeling afraid. “Do you want to talk about your fear?”, I asked. He talked while I listened and asked a few more questions. When we were done, he told me that some measure of peace had returned. It was a peace that had come from within him, not from anything I’d said. I’d simply helped clear some rubble that blocked his access to his own soul.

My misgivings about advice began with my first experience of clinical depression thirty-five years ago. The people who tried to support me had good intentions. But, for the most part, what they did left me feeling more depressed.

Some went for the nature cure: “Why don’t you get outside and enjoy the sunshine and fresh air? Everything is blooming and it’s such a beautiful day!” When you’re depressed, you know intellectually that it’s beautiful out there. But you can’t feel a bit of that beauty because your feelings are dead — and being reminded of that gap is depressing.

Other would-be helpers tried to spruce up my self-image: “Why so down on yourself? You’ve helped so many people.” But when you’re depressed, the only voice you can hear is one that tells you that you’re a worthless fraud. Those compliments deepened my depression by making me feel that I’d defrauded yet another person: “If he knew what a worm I am, he’d never speak to me again.”

Here’s the deal. The human soul doesn’t want to be advised or fixed or saved. It simply wants to be witnessed — to be seen, heard and companioned exactly as it is. When we make that kind of deep bow to the soul of a suffering person, our respect reinforces the soul’s healing resources, the only resources that can help the sufferer make it through.

Aye, there’s the rub. Many of us “helper” types are as much or more concerned with being seen as good helpers as we are with serving the soul-deep needs of the person who needs help. Witnessing and companioning take time and patience, which we often lack — especially when we’re in the presence of suffering so painful we can barely stand to be there, as if we were in danger of catching a contagious disease. We want to apply our “fix,” then cut and run, figuring we’ve done the best we can to “save” the other person.

During my depression, there was one friend who truly helped. With my permission, Bill came to my house every day around 4:00 PM, sat me down in an easy chair, and massaged my feet. He rarely said a word. But somehow he found the one place in my body where I could feel a sense of connection with another person, relieving my awful sense of isolation while bearing silent witness to my condition.

By offering me this quiet companionship for a couple of months, day in and day out, Bill helped save my life. Unafraid to accompany me in my suffering, he made me less afraid of myself. He was present — simply and fully present — in the same way one needs to be at the bedside of a dying person.

It’s at such a bedside where we finally learn that we have no “fix” or “save” to offer those who suffer deeply. And yet, we have something better: our gift of self in the form of personal presence and attention, the kind that invites the other’s soul to show up. As Mary Oliver has written:

“This is the first, the wildest and the wisest thing I know: that the soul exists and is built entirely out of attentiveness.”

I leave you with two pieces of advice — a flagrant self-contradiction for which my only defense is Emerson’s dictum that “consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” (1) Don’t give advice, unless someone insists. Instead, be fully present, listen deeply, and ask the kind of questions that give the other a chance to express more of his or her own truth, whatever it may be. (2) If you find yourself receiving unwanted advice from someone close to you, smile and ask politely if you can pay a little less this month.


Find A GOOD Therapist..

Good therapists are out there and what a blessing they are. Just like in any profession, there are the good, the not so good and the ones that will take advantage of you.. My suggestion (from experience) if it doesn’t feel 100% safe and positive WALK AWAY and look again! Keep looking, trust your feelings, your gut, your instincts. By doing this you will save yourself a lot of time, money, and potential heartache!

A good therapist is an amazing blessing!

Do not trust anyone simply because they have a degree. A degree makes you a therapist, it doesn’t make you a GOOD therapist.

A therapist that is not a fit is a waste of your time, energy and money.

Finding a good therapist makes the work so much faster, smoother and less painful..

Find a therapist that you feel a connection with and good vibes.

Don’t be slack simply because it’s easier to see just anybody… just like you can see any doctor rather than finding a doctor who actually gives a shit about your wellbeing.

Trust your INSTINCTS!

Find a therapist that their work is not only their career but their vocation (you’ll feel it)..

Find a therapist who doesn’t let their personal belief system (religion etc..) get in the way.

Find a therapist who is open minded and non-judgemental.

Find a therapist that has strong personal boundaries and work ethics.

A good therapist lets you talk but is also solutions orientated.

A good therapist you feel safe around the minute you meet them.

A good therapist has a big heart but also uses her brain.

A good therapist can play different roles like teacher, mentor or guide.

Make sure your relationship with your therapist is not co-dependent. eg. you are vulnerable and need a friend and she unconsciously holds you from moving faster through therapy because the cash each week is good.

A codependent therapeutic relationship is hard to break… Often it is not conscious., but it is a sign that your therapist has work to do on herself.

Your therapist’s issues shouldn’t come up as you talk. This is about you.

You are paying good money, so don’t waste it on a therapist:

  • Who lets you talk but offers no solutions
  • Who isn’t that good and you know it!
  • Who make you feel anxious around them (there is good anxiety and bad anxiety).
  • Who makes you feel uncomfortable or bad or unsafe

Seeing a same sex therapist is a good idea.

Transference can be a problem with opposite sex therapy relationships (sexual attraction, rescuer/ victim dynamics).

Make sure your therapist is not taking advantage of you ~ financially, sexually ..

Love & baby steps

SG x




Your Destiny Is Not Tied To Anyone That Left

Love Liz Gilbert..  SG x

Dear Ones –

It’s Sunday morning. Let’s go to church.

I LOVE this short but powerful video about letting people go.

We all need to learn this — what Jakes calls “the gift of goodbye.”

Because we’ve all had people in our life who left us behind.

Maybe they left without an explanation, or maybe they left with an insufficient explanation, or maybe they left in a cloud of lies and pain.

Maybe it was a family member, maybe it was a lover, maybe it was a friend.

Maybe you ran after them, begging them to stay.

Maybe you’re still calling them in the middle of the night, trying to convince them to come back.

Maybe you’re working on that next ten-page letter — that last effort to save the relationship (despite the fact that none of the other ten-page letters worked.)

Maybe you’re still begging.

(You think I’m judging you? Hell, no! I’m speaking for myself here, too. I’m not gonna name names, but let’s just put it this way: I am not unfamiliar with the act of begging people to stay. You don’t think I can write a ten-page letter trying to save a doomed relationship? Trust me: I CAN WRITE A TEN-PAGE LETTER.)

But Bishop Jakes has it correct here: If anyone can walk out of your life, you LET THEM WALK.

Your destiny is not tied to anyone who is able to walk out on you.