One More Thing About Being Depressed and Gay…

by Bill Brenner on October 20, 2010

A lot of folks have left comments on my post about homosexuality and depression. All of them are excellent, thoughtful responses and I hope you’ll check them out. But there’s one response I’m puzzled over.

Mood music:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOx37_h0UH8&fs=1&hl=en_US]

It came from David Nedlin, operations manager at Beyond the 12 Steps. He left the following comment in the “Mental Health and Addiction Specialist” forum on LinkedIn, where I sometimes post my blog entries: “Ridiculous post – I thought this was a somewhat serious web site.”

Now, I’m familiar with Nedlin’s work with recovering addicts and I have enormous respect for him. I sent him a message asking what his issue is with the post, and for all I know it’s a good reason.

Whatever the reason, his reaction reminded me that I occasionally have to clarify what this blog is about. With that in mind:

–I tackle various issues around mental health and addictive behavior based on MY OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCES. I am not a medical professional, nor have I ever claimed to be.

–Like anything that’s based on one’s personal impressions, you should never take what I write as Gospel. Everything I write is based on my perceptions, which can be as flawed today as they were a decade ago.

–I figured this would be of service to some people because I reached the point where I can open up about embarrassing things I’ve done, so others may see it and realize they are not freaks and, more importantly, that there is light to be found at the end of the hellhole if you’re willing to walk toward it.

–The subject of homosexuality will always be a charged issue. I dove in because I’ve seen up close the pain friends and relatives experienced before they chose to come out of the closet.

–I also had to address it because it’s something that comes up a lot in my Catholic community. In one of the comments in Saturday’s post, a fellow named Nick put the matter in words that I think come closest to nailing it on the head.

All I know is this: I’m not sorry for tackling the subject, and those who don’t like it don’t have to come here.

One more thing: You’ll notice a lot of people wearing purple ribbons or posting pics of them on Facebook and Twitter. That’s in memory of the six gay boys who committed suicide in recent weeks/months due to homophobic abuse in their homes and at their schools.

If you think harassing someone for their sexual orientation is an example of God’s love, you’re an idiot.

If you dismiss these kids as wasted souls because they committed suicide, I don’t agree. When pain and fear remove your sanity and sense of logic, a mental illness has taken hold and you are more likely to do things you know are wrong. It’s not as simple as going against God. I’ve seen suicide cases up close.

We’re all guilty of going against God at various points in our lives. But some are lucky enough not to get so far away that death is the result.

It’s a tragedy that these kids were pushed over that line.

My prayers are with them and their families, and with anyone who is going through the pain right now.

I’m sorry if this has been a preachy post. But I said what I felt I had to say.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Alan Shimel October 20, 2010 at 8:36 am

Bill, Amen to you. Please see a dialog I had with Lori Mac today on facebook. Interested in your thoughts

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