• #MeToo Movement Helps To Shed Light on Depression in Men

Some of what this article is discussing some liberals refer to as “Toxic Masculinity,” which is not, contrary to what some conservatives believe, saying that all men are abusive or that masculinity itself is toxic.

Toxic Masculinity refers to rigid societal gender expectations for boys and men, ones which can harm males (as well as females), such as what is discussed in this article.

#MeToo Movement Helps To Shed Light on Depression in Men

In the shadow of #MeToo revolution there is a quieter evolution occurring in the world of men: Famous men are coming forward to discuss their battles with anxiety and depression.

Just this Tuesday, NBA superstar Kevin Love penned a powerful pieceabout a panic attack he suffered during a game on Nov. 5, 2017. It is easy to miss the connection between Love’s story and the fight for gender equality. Males, from boys to old men, are prisoners of our own perceived indestructibility.

Love’s revelations about his battle with anxiety are part of a larger movement to destigmatize mental health and treat it as something more than the blues. Love was inspired by a former teammate, DeMar DeRozan, who himself came forward to discuss his depression in late February.

There are many obstacles to confronting mental health, but a common barrier for men is masculinity and gender expectations of male toughness, which Lovehighlighted, “Growing up, you figure out really quickly how a boy is supposed to act. You learn what it takes to ‘be a man.’ It’s like a playbook: Be strong. Don’t talk about your feelings. Get through it on your own.”

Continue reading


• Understanding Grief, by Jane E. Brody

Understanding Grief, by Jane E. Brody

I have been considering writing a post or two of my own about grief, and I may still.

My experience after my mother died a few years ago is that the vast majority of Christians are not only terrible and incompetent at ministering to those with grief but they are, in addition, heartless.

Rather than receive love, encouragement, and empathy from Christians I approached after the death of my mother, I was subjected to all sorts of hurtful attitudes, actions, and comments: some Christians ignored me, hoping I’d back off and stop calling; some lectured me; some shamed me; some victim blamed me, some gave cold, hard advice.

Grief is going to happen to each and every person reading this post. You too will have someone you love very much die before you do.

If you are a Christian who has yet to experience the death of a loved one, do not count on the Christians around you to be there for you during your time of loss, because most of them (perhaps not any) will not support you, nor do most of them truly want to support you during your grief. I can perhaps blog on that issue more at a future date.

I believe all Christians should read this article at the New York Times about grief and learn from it:

Understanding Grief, via New York Times


“There is no right or wrong in grief; we need to accept whatever form it takes, both in ourselves and in others”

by Jane E. Brody

Although many of us are able to speak frankly about death, we still have a lot to learn about dealing wisely with its aftermath: grief, the natural reaction to loss of a loved one.

Continue reading

• The Griefbot That Could Change How We Mourn

The Griefbot That Could Change How We Mourn

The Griefbot That Could Change How We Mourn

Muhammad Ahmed’s grandkids would never meet their grandfather, so he made an AI version of him. How might that change our concept of death?

… The data scientist believes artificial intelligence will eventually allow us to craft the data left behind by an individual into convincing text-based simulations of that person.

Dubbed “griefbots,” they’ll respond when prompted, imitating the deceased’s cadence, tone, and idiosyncrasies. Ahmad thinks these griefbots could make grieving for loved ones an interactive experience.

Continue reading

• Jim Bakker: Washington Train Derailment Was A Warning From God

There’s nothing like blaming God for the failures, stupidity, or irresponsibility of human beings.

The following comes from a left wing site. Though I am a right winger, I follow or visit liberal sites.

I am a tad more sympathetic towards the right wing side, since I am right wing, but occasionally, other conservatives say or do some very stupid things, and the liberal sites will let you know about it, while the conservative sites generally remain “mum” about this sort of lunacy:

Jim Bakker: Washington Train Derailment Was A Warning From God

I think several people died in that derailment, did they not? And here Baker is using that tragedy to advocate for his own weird views.

In the future, should I compose a post on this blog explaining a bit as to why I have been thinking of leaving the Christian faith (after having accepted Christ as my Savior when I was a kid), this Jim Bakker post is one of the things I will link to as another reason.

And no, I do not “follow” or “worship” Jim Bakker, but I’m thinking, if this is the sort of nuttiness Christianity produces, I’d like to be counted out.


By Kyle Mantyla | January 3, 2018 10:31 am

End Times prepper pastor Jim Bakker declared on his television program last week that last month’s train derailment in Washington state was some sort of warning from God.

Continue reading

• 1 in 3 Protestant Churchgoers Personally Affected by Suicide

1 in 3 Protestant Churchgoers Personally Affected by Suicide

1 in 3 Protestant Churchgoers Personally Affected by Suicide

Survey also finds one-third of victims were attending church before their death, but few pastors knew of their struggle.


Suicide remains a taboo subject in many Protestant churches, despite the best efforts of pastors, according to a new study from LifeWay Research.

Eight in 10 Protestant senior pastors believe their church is equipped to intervene with someone who is threatening suicide.

Yet few people turn to the church for help before taking their own lives, according to their churchgoing friends and family. Only 4 percent of churchgoers who have lost a close friend or family member to suicide say church leaders were aware of their loved one’s struggles.

“Despite their best intentions, churches don’t always know how to help those facing mental health struggles,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research.

Continue reading

• Man Copes With the Death of His Wife By Hiking

 Man Copes With the Death of His Wife By Hiking

What may become my standard opener for posts about death and grief:

My mother died a little bit before the year 2010 (yes, I am being intentionally sketchy about specifics because I would like to remain anonymous).
I discovered the hard way after my mother’s passing, and I was shocked and deeply saddened and disappointed to find, that most Christians are terrible at helping someone who is in grief.
Many Christians do not even want to try to be there for someone who has experienced loss, whether out of laziness, selfishness, or feeling uncomfortable with open expressions of emotional pain.
Whatever the reason, most Christians do not want to weep with the one who weeps and therefore leaves them to cope with the loss completely alone, which I feel is terrible and insensitive.

I watched a Christian program that involved a man whose wife died of breast cancer. He started hiking to cope with the loss.

Before I get to the link and his story, I wanted to use his story as a reminder: conservative Christians keep offering this fairy tale story that marriage will solve all a person’s problems.

The conservative church portrays singleness after the age of 25 as being second class or merely a waiting period until one eventually marries (what if one never marries? they never address this possibility).

Getting married is not a solution to loneliness, financial problems, or about anything else problematic, as so many Christians like to portray it.

Should you marry, your spouse may turn out to be abusive (whether physically, emotionally, verbally, or financially), your spouse may announce one day that he’s not in love with you any longer and wants to divorce you to marry another; or, your spouse may come down with a mental health problem or get into a car wreck and become paralyzed.

And, of course, as this post shows, should you marry, your spouse may die from a physical cause.

Hiking Through – One Man’s Great Adventure on the Appalachian Trail


Each year thousands of people attempt to hike the entire Appalachian Trail from start to finish. Only one in four completes it. When then 58-year-old Paul Stutzman took his first steps on the 2,176 mile journey, he wanted more than a great adventure. He was looking for an encounter with God.

Years before, Paul was busy living life. He was happily married, had three children and a great job managing a large restaurant in Ohio’s Amish country.  Then in 2002, doctors diagnosed his beloved wife Mary with breast cancer. Although they did everything they could and believed God would heal her, Mary passed away four years later.

Continue reading

• The Death of a Child: Understanding the Grief Facing Charlie Gard’s Parents by Jessica Firger

The Death of a Child: Understanding the Grief Facing Charlie Gard’s Parents by Jessica Firger

I don’t think most people, Christians above all, have a handle on how to minister to someone who is in grief. It’s a topic I wish were covered more often on spiritual abuse type blogs.

The following editorial focuses on the loss of an infant, but I think a lot of the advice the expert gives is applicable to about anyone who has suffered loss, regardless of the age.

The Death of a Child: Understanding the Grief Facing Charlie Gard’s Parents


This week, Connie Yates and Chris Gard said goodbye to their son, Charlie Gard. On Thursday, a judge of the British High Court ruled the 11-month-old, who had been suffering from an extremely rare and untreatable genetic disorder known as mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome, should be taken off life-support and moved into a hospice facility. He died the next day.

The story of the young boy has stirred up an international and contentious debate about the limits of hospice and end-of-life care.

Newsweek spoke with Dr. Joanne Cacciatore, a grief counselor whose area of expertise is traumatic death, particularly that of children. Cacciatore is professor of psychology at Arizona State University and founder of the MISS Foundation, a nonprofit that provides social support services to families grieving loss.

Although Cacciatore has published more than 60 papers on the subject of bereavement and traumatic death, her expertise is also firsthand. More than two decades ago, she lost her daughter, Cheyanne, at birth.

What makes grieving the loss of an infant different from grieving an older child?

The death of a child at any age and from any cause is life-changing for parents. It’s always extremely painful. What makes the death of a young baby different is that often the family grieves alone.

Very few people knew the child intimately other than the parents.

And because babies are, of course, highly dependent on the parent for care, such a death is different in some important and really painful ways. Many parents who experience the death of a baby feel a tremendous sense of responsibility for their baby’s death.

….Does the bereavement process become easier over time for parents that find themselves in these circumstances?

I’m not a fan of the idea of “recovery,” because I don’t think we ever recover from a catastrophic loss. But the grief can become lighter. I try to teach people how to carry it, how to turn toward it, and how to stay connected to the child who died. We need space and people to remember with us in nonjudgmental ways.

Continue reading