who is better - he who seeks help or he who doesn't?

Above a month ago I met a very interesting person. A priest by profession, this gentleman walked into my clinic without prior appointment and was really determined for a consultancy.
Initially I was very intrigued. In my line of work, it's not every day that I meet individuals who are so determined to have a consultancy. Most cases come as last
 resort, when they have tried everything under the sky.
My initial intrigue was further magnified thousands times when I came to know this gentleman was a priest. Naturally they are the "opposite side"...The people who constantly preach that psychiatry is some modern form of "witch-craft".

Today when the same gentleman came for re-check and re-evaluation, I asked him two questions that were intriguing me since his 1st visit -
"how come he visited a psychiatrist, when its against what he preaches?
and why me and not some psychiatrist from his own religion/spiritual practice?"

A brief over-view of this gentleman's case - He is suffering from post-traumatic clinical depression. 15yrs ago, he experienced a very strong emotional hurt by someone very close to him. The memories of that hurt and betrayal have not left him. This has created extreme negativity in his mind. To the extent that he decided to give up all worldly pleasures and seek solace in god. Still his mind has always been restless, he is very irritable, gets angry on the drop of a pin, performs his duties as a priest without love, has problems sleeping and hasn't had a peaceful sleep in 15yrs.

This gentleman replied to my questions - "Doc, only me and my god knows how I have spent every single day of the last 15yrs.
Every day I would wake up feeling I haven't slept, having a headache, feeling extreme sadness.
Every day I would relive those moments and the tragedy I went through as if they are happening just right now.
I forgot how food should taste, I preached about god's love but I couldnt generate it in my own heart.
I was such an irritable person, that people would be scared of me. There has been time when I have introduced anger into others heart.
I had was just living.

I had one strong belief and hope, that all this emotional pain, sadness and helplessness was because god was testing me.

I would read all the religious materials and would see how god had tested those who had faith in him. And I felt this was my test.

For 15years I comforted myself every single day, telling myself that this was my test.
Then one night I was trying to sleep, I suddenly started to feel excess of fear. I felt cold and still was sweating. I could hear and feel my heart beat, felt a sinking feeling and a severe chest pain.
I thought this is a heart attack and I am going to die... Finally god has decided to end my ordeal... I am prepared to leave this painful body and move ahead.

The next 3hours where terrible. All these feelings just kept increasing and decreasing. And with every moment I prayed more intensively to god to just take me away. To just kill me.. To end all this.
3 hours later it all stopped. I suddenly felt motionless. And heard a voice.
At that moment I felt I was dead, and this was the voice of god.

The voice just said one thing - if one leg of the table is broken what will do? fix it or sit on the same table, cribbing and crying that my table is broken?

A few minutes later I woke up, and found myself lying in a pool of sweat.
I realized god had just told me that my brain was the broken leg. I needed to get it fixed.
The day I die and really meet him, he will surely say why didn't you preach my word with happiness and love. Those who are my own, are just immersed in gratitude, love and devotion to me.. They are always content.. why did you chose depression and anger.
If I tell him, that it was your test...
I am sure he'll fail me, because he has also provided me with mediums to solve the problem.
A real test is when you are in the middle of a desert, with only one stream of water to drink from. And even that stream of water is poisoned. And your heart is full of contentment till the moment you die of thirst.
When every mean has been provided to you, to fight the demons in the mind, you have to use them.

I realized i had been avoiding getting help just because I was scared to talk to someone.
I realized how I have counseled thousands since I have become a priest, but I am no different from them. I am also human.

A small pause... I had decided that I wanted to see a psychiatrist, but certainly hadn't researched about it...as for why I chose you, well to be frank, I was just walking towards the railway station and saw your board..."

he gave me a wink and a great smile... and walked out of the clinic.


My inbox is always open to all your suggestions and queries. You are most welcome to approach me at -

Dr.Hemant Mittal (Neuro-Psychiatrist, Motivational Speaker and Counselor)
email - eksoch@gmail.com
website - http://mindmantra.in/services.html
address- 15, shreeji plaza, next to ice n spice restaurant, opposite seawoods station, seawoods (east)
Navi Mumbai

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