He wanted to know if there was a good enough reason to see a psychiatrist, psychologist, rabbi or a priest. How he figured I'd be a good person to ask, I don't know. You don't carry physical marks of your time talking to a confessor. Yes, I have talked with one or two or more over the course of my life. And I am much the better for those opportunities to understand better human nature. How people think of us, matters less than most of us would assume, because we know exactly what we think of ourselves.
The difference between types of confessors is really simple, the priest or rabbi will cast their aid in a form of religion. Should someone go see one? If the phrase, "Remember the time you did a bad thing, and someone suffered because of it?" causes you a sudden feeling of remorse; Then yes, you should go see a confessor and get that bad thing off your mind. Those little bad things weigh you down, and eventually pull you into a depression generated abyss.
The first time I visited a psychiatrist it was over my personal embarrassment. I was so certain based on everything I had read, that if I could not identify as male living in a strongly masculine male world then I had to be a transsexual. I have since learned a great deal more about this, but at the time this concept was really ripping me up inside. Now at the same time, I am strongly homophobic (that too, is not the right word). However, the very thought of being touched by a male makes my skin crawl, its worse than fingernails on a chalkboard. Which led me to believe I should be a normal male... except that didn't work either.
I hope you can understand this was a very serious mentally challenging problem, not to mention highly embarrassing should my co-workers in the pro-military industrial complex ever find out.
It took me a year of talking to a psychiatrist, before I began to believe that there were good reasons to continue living. To even dream of finding joy and happiness. My world then was a dim dark grey place that wasn't too bad, didn't hurt too much, most of the time. To put it mildly my physical challenges and surroundings had left me a mental train wreck. Fortunately this was all long ago and through many talks with someone who had different insight I got alot better. :)
Today I am better balanced, my own failures pale next to the pressure I felt society was demanding of me, and those I now know are not all consuming. Psychiatrists help us to learn how to think around sticking points in the societal fabric. As do all other confessors. We can learn to be better people, we can learn to think better of ourselves, we can learn... if we but choose to do so.
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