Office of Christian Care and Counseling

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness and National Depression & Mental Health Screening Month

National Domestic Violence Awareness

Since 1989, October has been the month set aside to acknowledge domestic violence survivors, thrivers, victims and families. Domestic violence (also known as intimate partner violence (IPV), domestic abuse or relationship abuse) is a pattern of behaviors used by one partner to maintain power and control over another partner in an intimate relationship.

Domestic violence does not discriminate. Anyone of any race, age, sexual orientation, religion or gender can be a victim – or perpetrator – of domestic violence. It can happen those who are married, living together or who are dating. It affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and education levels. Domestic violence is not only a physical act. It can be ANY act done with the intention to harm, scare or force an individual to do things they do not want to do.

Have you ever wondered- is this abuse? In the chart below are 8 common tactics used to assert power and control. These tactics tend worsen when there is the threat or use of physical and sexual violence, as represented by the bold outer ring of the wheel.

Have you ever wondered- is this abuse? In the chart below are 8 common tactics used to assert power and control. These tactics tend worsen when there is the threat or use of physical and sexual violence, as represented by the bold outer ring of the wheel.

If you answered YES, you may be in an unhealthy or abusive relationship. Learn more information here and reach out for help today!

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HELPFUL RESOURCES:

National Depression & Mental Health Screening

Everyone occasionally has bouts of sadness, but these feelings are usually fleeting. When a person has a depressive disorder, it interferes with daily life and normal functioning. It is a common but serious illness.

There is no single known cause of depression, but it likely results from a combination of genetic, biochemical, environmental and psychological factors. Depression commonly coexists with other illnesses, such as anxiety disorders or alcohol/substance abuse. It can affect anyone at any time, from children to older adults.

Recognizing the Symptoms People with depressive illnesses do not all experience the same symptoms. The severity, frequency and duration will vary depending on the individual and the illness. Think about yourself and your loved ones. Mark any that apply. Have you noticed: „

  • Trouble falling, staying asleep or sleeping too much?
  • Poor appetite or overeating?
  • Feeling sad, anxious or “empty” often?
  • Feeling guilty, worthless or hopeless often?
  • Loss of interest in activities you/they once enjoyed?
  • Thoughts or mentions of suicide.
  • Feeling a lack of energy or motivation to do normal activities?
  • Trouble concentrating on activities such as reading or watching TV?
  • Moving or talking slower than normal? Or being more fidgety and restless?

Did you know…?

About 1 in 4 adults suffer from some type of diagnosable mental disorder in a given year?

People who have gone through a recent emotional crisis or who are grieving a recent loss may experience these symptoms more often.

Diagnosis and Treatment
Depression is a highly treatable disorder. The first step is to visit a doctor, where he/she will perform a medical examination and rule out factors that may be causing the condition, such as certain medications or a thyroid disorder. Once diagnosed, a person will likely be treated with psychotherapy and/or medication. In the meantime, it is important to exercise, participate in activities, spend time with friends and relatives, and think positively. If you have access to an Employee Assistance Program (EAP), they may be able to offer assistance as well.

Helping a Loved One Affected by Depression
Knowing a depressed person can affect you too. The most important thing to do is to help him/her get an appropriate diagnosis and treatment. Other ways to lend a hand:

  • Offer emotional support, understanding, patience and encouragement.
  • Be a good listener.
  • Never ignore comments about suicide; report them to your friend’s relative or doctor, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273-TALK.
  • Invite your friend to do things with you; if he/she declines, keep trying, but don’t push.
  • Remind your friend that with time and treatment, the depression will lift.

HELPFUL RESOURCES:

For more information, visit the National Institute for Mental Health Web site at www.nimh.nih.gov or www.mentalhealthscreening.org or speak with a trusted health care professional.

Stay tuned for a special presentation during November in support of National Family Caregivers Month from ASBC’s AGAPE ministry. For further questions email agape@alfredstreet.org

Know that we are praying for you and are here to support in any way we can.
For further questions email:

Drop us a line at pastoralcounseling@alfredstreet.org and tell us how you are doing!

For further information, assistance, or for counseling referrals email:

NOTE: due to an overwhelming response, counseling requests are being wait-listed and answered in order received.  Contacting your insurance provider, employer provided employee assistance program team or EAP team or larger platforms like Better Help or Thrive works may be a better option for an immediate request.