This post is intended to be humorous, and the author is not a medical doctor who knows the first thing about any disorder whatsoever. There are some disorders that are very real and not to be taken lightly (autism, for example). However, the author does know from personal experience that many disorder diagnoses are easy to come by and doctors hand out prescriptions like candy. So before you start accusing the author of making light of real disorders that people are truly suffering from, keep in mind she is (attempting) being funny. And if that isn’t possible for you, please save yourself the trouble of reading it, and the author the trouble of hearing about it later.
If you’re already annoyed, stop reading. Seriously, stop. Now.
Is it just me or does it seem like nowadays everybody has some sort of emotional disorder? It’s the new craze…oooh, poor word choice…I mean, fad. “I’m OCD”, “I suffer from MDD”. All these acronyms have me confused. “You have ADHD? Yeah, I don’t really like classic rock.” I think what our country is suffering from is what I’m going to call Emotional Disorder Disorder, or EDD for short.
I don’t intend this to be a rant against disorders as I don’t know enough about most of them to declare war on them. But what strikes me as…interesting is how often people talk about their own disorders like it’s a cute moniker attached to their name. “Hi, I’m Sue, OCD.” Um, Sue? Unless that is some rare degree for an Ovarian Cyst Doctor or something, let’s keep it to ourselves next time, okay?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big huge fan of honesty (as those who read my posts are well aware), but I don’t want to hear about your issues and then listen to you scoop them into some Diagnosisware where you’ll then take them out and burp them when convenient. “Gee, I know I was supposed to be snack mom today, but you know me and my ADD!” Look, I’ve more than once washed the inside of my washing machine because I’ve forgotten to add the clothes, but that means I’m trying to do too many other things right then, not because I’m dysfunctional (…well…). It seems to me that people who are actually suffering from these disorders are ashamed of them and don’t ever speak of them, instead of using them as an excuse. We’re being diagnosed left and right with this problem or that problem. I could be diagnosed with at least half of all the disorders making a name for themselves right now. Obsessive Compulsive? Check Check Check. Attention Deficit? What? Oh, Check. Chronic Depression? *sigh* check. Bipolar? I SAID CHECK!!! *sob*
I can’t speak for everyone, but I know my disorders are not a result of bad wiring up in the attic. I’m a sinful person. For example, I’m obsessive compulsive about so many things that it is one of the top two, okay top five, reasons I don’t have a personal Facebook account. Because if I did, I know for a fact I would be checking it every 5 minutes. If I already do it with my email, I’d do it with Facebook too. When I was a teenager, I had to stop wearing a watch because I literally became obsessed with checking the time. I make spreadsheets for everything, including what to have for each meal and each snack every day. It’s scary. Idleness, boredom, self-absorption – maybe if I focused a lot more on the Lord than myself I wouldn’t have this issue. In my case, it should be called OMCD – Obsessed with Melissa Compulsive Disorder.
As a teenager my husband was diagnosed with ADD and was given medications so he could concentrate in school. We’ve gotten in some debates about this, but he says the medicine works on people who actually have it and that it worked on him and helped him focus. He’s not on any medication right now and, as a computer programmer, he can sit in front of his computer for 12 hours a day no problem, so no issues with his attention span there. Hmmm. A long time ago, when his son was little and throwing a fit in his room for getting in trouble, Justin made the mistake of telling me that “…his actions reminded him of himself when he was young and it sure seems like an ADD thing…” when I quickly shot down that theory by showing him that “his son was acting like a typical little child who was being sinful by throwing a tantrum and don’t you ever blame our children’s naughty behavior on anything other than what it is: sin!”
As for depression, that’s an easy one. I spend so much time wallowing in my problems, wishing someone would understand, feeling absolutely miserable and low. I was given Zoloft after my first pregnancy. I took it for a week before shutting it in a drawer and never taking it again because I felt so disgusted with myself. I didn’t need that stuff. A blanket for my problems wasn’t what I needed; I needed a more permanent fix than that. When I’m in low spirits, and trust me, I’ve been in looow spirits, nothing can help me like prayer and focusing on the good things of the Lord. No, it’s not an easy fix from a human perspective, but it sure beats relying on something other than the Great Physician in the Sky to take away all those blue thoughts and replace them with a yearning for Him and His Word. No little happy pill can do for me what the power and faithfulness of Christ can do for me.
There’s no way I could get a psychiatric exam and NOT be diagnosed with bipolar disorder. My ups and downs throughout the day are like an EKG graph. I can go from “zip-ah-dee-do-dah” to volatile madwoman to sobbing mess in a matter of minutes. There’s no excuse for lack of self-control, I don’t care what anyone says. I know firsthand that the very root of bipolar disorder is a sinful, uncontrolled heart. Can I blame my severe mood swings on an inherited disorder? According to the world, yes. According to God the Father? No, there is no excuse for my sin of letting my angry, self-pitying thoughts and actions run rampant.
My point is, are we as a country really suffering from all these disorders, or are we so excited to finally have something to blame our sinful natures on that we accept a diagnosis like it’s a graduation diploma that we can frame and hang above our desks? “See, the doctor says I’m special!”
As a Christian, I have no excuse for my sins. Like I said, I don’t know enough about most disorders to judge for others, but I do know some things. For example, I know that severe depression can cause physical damage to the brain. But again, as a Christian, what excuse would I have for letting myself get to that point? I can’t let the world tell me my sins are not my fault. In John 15:22 Jesus says, “If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.” (Emphasis mine)
Father, I thank You for being sufficient! We have no need to pay somebody to listen to our problems, tell us why we’re medically “justified” in our sinful ways, and then fill us with lies about what is right and wrong. You are the greatest Listener, the only Judge of what is right and wrong, and You don’t even charge us for Your precious time! We are so blessed to be able to turn to You, to throw our problems at Your worthy feet and to have You “fix” us! Thank You for covering my sin with the precious sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, and for taking me by the hand and guiding me to You and Your Word, where all of my counseling needs are met. Thank You for making prayer my prescription so that I am compelled to seek Your help first and foremost. You are my cure!