Friday, September 23, 2005

Notes from the Prozac Nation, Vol. 1, No. 5

  • Post-Partum Daddy Depression: More on the the University of Oxford report on male post partum depression and its impact on their children.
    postpartum depression (PPD) in fathers doubles the risk that the child later will have behavioral problems, especially if the child is a boy.
    More alarming were long-term effects:
    By preschool age, "we saw emotional problems, disruptive problems, fearful behaviors, over-reactive behaviors," says O'Connor. "We know this happens for boys and girls when the mom has PPD. But if we're talking about a dad's PPD, the effects were stronger on boys." And, it remained noticeable even after the parents' depressions had been controlled.

    I find this study well timed, since we have returned to an era of blaming single, poor mothers for our failing and chaotic cities. Obviously, both parents have an impact on the later mental health of their children.

  • Spirituality After Prozac: I wish that I could attend some of the lectures that will be presented in this series on depression and the clergy:
  • Chrysalis Counseling Center and the Presbyterian Counseling Center will sponsor a series of programs for clergy on "Depression and Faith," because people often question whether something is wrong with their faith when they are depressed. All sessions will be from noon to 1:30 p.m. on Wednesdays at Christ United Methodist Church (410 N. Holden Road, Greensboro). The cost will be $8 for lunch.
    I particularly like the title of the third talk, "Spirituality after Prozac," because it seems to me that the biomedical model of depression really challenges the traditional (and often stubbornly entrenched view) that depression is a spiritual struggle. The idea that we should not treat the severely depressed with the best that medicine can offer, but instead leave them to battle with this challenge issued from their maker is, to my mind, disturbing. I am happy to see that this series will be more sophistiated and nuanced.