Tag Archives: children

If Someone is Hurting You, Does He or She Love You?

Compassionate Love: Displaying Compassion for Those Who Struggle with Mental Illness or Abuse  (c)2013 Nancy Virden, Always The Fight Ministries

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In Christine’s search for love,  trouble never had difficulty finding her. She fell for the lie of love from strangers and family. Finally she married a man who said his love was for forever, yet even then was knowingly deceitful.

Is it any wonder Christine does not know what real love is?

Love is not, Love is

Love is not a claim of love. Love is not warm fuzzy feelings.

Love is a choice to care about another person.  Love is an action, it is truth, it never fails.

That is not to say we do not let loved ones down. We will because we are human. Love is a continuous desire to not fail, and does not disappear when times are rough. Love stops doing what is wrong and learns to do what is right.

Fuzzy warm feelings may disintegrate; love will remain. It may look different, but is active and true. For example,  a broken marriage does not have to end in bitterness.

Love is not martyrdom or playing the doormat. It is not giving someone everything they want. Love stands up for what is best.

3 test cases

(1) Her husband calls. Audrey hesitates to answer the phone because she knows what will come of it. Her unemployed status has disappointed him. He will assume the position of her boss by informing her exactly how she is failing.   

Does he love her?

(2) Andrew  ducks every time he walks through that door.  His mother used to hide behind it and swat him when he returned from school.  She passed away last year, and the duty of cleaning up her estate fell to him. Even after several months he continues to  tense for a sprint at the sight of that door.  

Did she ever love him?

(3) Anna  enjoys her adult children and rejoices in their independence. She made mistakes as a parent,  yet was willing to listen to her children’s points of view.   No one had been swatted from behind doors, or insulted for mistakes. She grins as she recalls all the spilled milk.  No one had been made to feel a fool.

Did she, does she love them?

My opinion: According to a professional source, the first two stories are examples of people loving the best they know how. I disagree. Story three matches that description better.

I am not willing to call abuse love at all. While no one loves perfectly, love is not selfish. Damaging behavior committed in a reckless and thoughtless manner is selfish. Not considering another person’s pain (or joys) is selfish.

Warm fuzzy feelings may come and go, yet ignoring a person’s plea to stop treating them a certain way because it hurts them,  is definitely selfish.

What do you think? 

Today’s Helpful Word  

Romans 13: 8-10

 The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no harm to a neighbor…

Biblical definition of love           In Christ we are loved forever

God’s love in our dark times 

 

***** COMMENTS ALWAYS WELCOME

 

NOTE:  I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental and behavioral health challenges.  In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.

If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.

If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S.  (for international emergency numbers, go here ), or go to your nearest emergency room. Do not be alone. Hope and help are yours.

*all names have been changed

No Matter Your Ideas On Immigration, We Must Care About Children

Compassionate Love: Displaying compassion for those who struggle with mental illness   (c) 2018  Nancy Virden, Always The Fight Ministries

PTSD. Those affected by Post-traumatic Stress Disorder come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes.

Even the very young need help to overcome emotional and biological scars from sudden, uncontrollable loss and fear. 

What you may not know is PTSD is not a catch-all to describe the effects of trauma in children.  Information in news reports is often incomplete or misinformed. If you want to know what it is actually like for many of these children, I recommend you read this or this or this.

It’s about the kids

You may or may not like U.S. immigration policies. Asylum, human trafficking, drug smuggling, family rights, and vetting are each serious issues deserving thoughtful consideration and debate.  We can agree to care about the children, right?

Many citizens of the world cry for an open-door policy. Other citizens of the world believe walls and zero-tolerance for illegal entry are the solution to more egregious evil.  Desperate refugees of war and crime need hope and protection.  Wicked people exploit desperation for their own gain.

We have to care about and protect the children.

The recent  wave in the U.S. of outrage and sympathy for children and adolescents caught between their parents, politics, and immigration  law is a sign, I hope.  Maybe some hearts are now stirred by children’s issues in general.

In the U.S.A.

  • Children are sold as sexual tools
  • Children’s Services Departments are overcrowded and underfunded
  • Suicide has moved up from the number 3 to number 2 cause of death for children age 10 and older.
  • Bullying, violence, disparity between quality of schools, medical care – all these are children’s issues we can choose as our national and personal focus.

A woman said to me yesterday, “There is nothing I can do, so I just do not watch the news. It is too distressing.”  We need to know what to do beyond railing against each other with political rhetoric.

Proactive ways to help 

  1. Write to your legislators. America is is not a democracy. It is a republic which means we are allowed to tell those in power what we will and will not endorse with our votes.
  2. Vote
  3. Financially support those institutions and organizations that are fighting against child exploitation, suicide, and any of the other issues.
  4. Volunteer hours with ministries or child advocacy groups that directly address these issues
  5. Teach your children to use their voices. They too can call and write to legislators.
  6. Be a foster parent to refugee or other children in distress

If we are going to use quotes from scripture to guide our decisions, then we do well to remember Today’s Helpful Word.  Jesus loves the little children. We need to care about that in more ways than one.

NOTE:  I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental illness, abuse, and addiction. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.
If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Hope and help are yours.

 

Cook, A., Blaustein, M., Spinazzola, J, & van der Kolk, B. (Eds.) (2007). Complex
trauma in children and adolescents. National Child Traumatic Stress Network. Retrieved from http://www.nctsnet.org/nccts/nav.do?pid=typ_ct

 

 

 

 

 

What About Children Who Die By Suicide?

Compassionate Love Blog: Displaying compassion for those who struggle with mental illness   (c)2016  Nancy Virden, Always the Fight Ministry

Muddy Shoes

We grieve when children lose their innocence by the unconscionable acts of selfish people. It hurts us to see our young suffer with cancer or hunger or any number of circumstances out of their control. It breaks our hearts when they cry out in pain.

As members of society we look to governments, churches, and schools to solve these issues, to save the children. As parents we are tempted to shake some reason into other parents who seem to vacillate between ignoring basic discipline or controlling their children too much.

The reason we have these reactions is children tug at our softest emotions. It is their dependence on us as adults that makes us feel responsible for the outcomes of their lives.  In short, we care.

Somehow, it bypasses our thinking that children can suffer depression and despair severe enough to take their own lives. In fact, when that happens, parents are usually blamed. We struggle to comprehend how a child could feel so deeply or process the idea of suicide without some terrible outside influence.

The most important thing to remember is that suicide is most often due to an undiagnosed and untreated mental disorder. Mental disorders do not appear to discriminate between age groups. As a matter of fact, half of those who have a mental disorder will show signs of it by the age of fourteen! That is half of millions in America alone.

Many children are dealing with a mental illness that interferes with their daily ability to function. Most go untreated because we have the idea that children are moody, temperamental, and immature. Their emotions and expressions of hopelessness are brushed off with well-intentioned platitudes like, “Get a good night’s sleep. You’ll feel better in the morning” or “Of course you’re fine – Jimmy is coming to play tomorrow.”

I meet many survivors of suicide loss. No matter how long ago a relative, friend, co-worker, or any significant person took their own life, each survivor has a lingering question. Why?

Imagine then the insurmountable sorrow of a parent whose child dies by suicide. Shame, guilt, fear of reprisal, and other stigma related issues often keep these parents in the shadows. They may refer to their child’s death as an accident, or “they died in their sleep.” Some do not answer truthfully the inevitable question from strangers, “How many children do you have?” “Why?”haunts their dreams.

In this post alone are 5 reasons that learning and talking about mental illness and suicide is crucial to our society:

  1. Each of us have the opportunity to save lives if we understand and do not condemn those in emotional or mental crisis.
  2. Parents can know what to look for in their children and respond more effectively to signs of depression and suicide.
  3. Children can be taught when to recognize dark thoughts, and shown who the safe people to reach out to are: trained teacher, school counselors or nurses, etc.  They will receive professional treatment which is nearly always successful.
  4. Treatment will become available and affordable when our conversation around mental health and illness is based on factual knowledge. Depression left untreated tends to get worse as time goes on. Early intervention saves adult lives as well.
  5. Survivors of suicide loss will receive support instead of odd looks and withdrawal by those who know the situation. They can “go public” with their stories and thus pass on inspiration and hope to other families and children.

Do you see? Knowledge is power, and this power saves lives.

Compassionate love learns.

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COMMENTS ARE ALWAYS WELCOME (see tab below)

NOTE: I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental illness. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental health care.

If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Hope and help is yours.

– picture from Kozzi.com