Marja Bergen

author, mental health activist, follower of Christ

Category: Day by Day (page 1 of 7)

14. Healthy relationships with our supporters

Taking control: creating our own boundaries What can a person like me – a person who sometimes feels rather “small” – do when no boundaries are given? I wonder how many of you who are reading this feel “small’ like this? Small in your eyes. We too often forget that God does not see us […]

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13. Healthy relationships with our supporters

Our pastors as supporters Ministry leaders are often the most affected by the needs and demands of people with mental health issues in the church. They tend to be kind-hearted with great willingness to help those who are suffering. For them setting boundaries in the spiritual care of these people is especially important. Someone I […]

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12. Healthy relationship with our supporters

Caring for our caregivers Lord, I know that, despite the illness I struggle with, I’m a caring person, like so many of us. We help others whenever we can and many of us have made contributions to our communities. Even then we run into problems with depression and other kinds of emotional distress. It becomes […]

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11. Healthy relationships with our supporters

Suffering: a gift? Lord, when I go through hard times, all I feel then is the pain. I often wish I could die. Looking for a way to escape it, I call out to you. To friends as well. But I receive only momentary relief. There seems to be no apparent reason for what’s happening. […]

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10. Healthy relationships with our supporters

What did Jesus do? Lord, you yourself know how there’s no pain like this pain of being rejected. Not only rejected, but sometimes even mistreated. You understand how much strength it takes to accept what I’ve gone through. It took more strength than I’ve needed for anything I’ve done before. I’ve heard that you just […]

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9. Healthy relationships with our supporters

When fences become walls Some words a friend shared:  “I keep thinking about fences, especially the ones on our street.  I’m not sure that fences make GOOD neighbours.  Wherever there is a fence on our street, it feels like they are keeping everyone out of their corner of the world. It becomes a definite boundary, […]

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8. Healthy relationships with our supporters

Fences make good neighbours? Lord, this photo of a fence with flowers growing on either side is helping me learn some important lessons about boundaries that I didn’t understand before. For a long time, the concept of boundaries didn’t make sense to me. It hurt when I was shut out of various people’s lives. Oh, […]

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7. Healthy relationships with our supporters

Overcoming our insecurity I was just thinking, Lord. It would be so good to have a second chance at having a mother who would be all the things a mother could be for me. Warm and kind. Understanding. Giving. At times I sure long for that, though I have found friends in whom I see […]

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6. Healthy relationships with our supporters

Controlling the urge to connect Some people have what’s called “anxious attachment” which starts during childhood. They seek approval and reassurance from others, never having a relief from self-doubt. In their relationships the feeling that they’re going to be rejected worries them and causes them not to trust. This drives them to be over-dependent. They […]

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5. Healthy relationships with our supporters

Respecting boundaries Lord, this morning I emailed a brief note to a friend. I thought I was getting pretty good about respecting her boundaries, trying not to email more than every couple of days or so. We had not formally discussed that this should be a boundary, yet it’s what seemed to work best. But […]

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