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Ask Dr. Z Your Own Question

Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5058
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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I have a 22 yr old daughter who is very much confused and troubled

Resolved Question:

I have a 22 yr old daughter who is very much confused and troubled about going to hell because she believes that blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is unforgivable and will be condemned for eternity. This has caused her to be depressed and miserable everyday. No matter how I try quoting the Bible, it wouldn't get to her. Please help me
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 1 year ago.

DoctorZ :

Hello I believe I can help you with your concern

DoctorZ :

I understand the distress that you are having for your daughter

DoctorZ :

May I ask you, how long has your daughter been this religious and has she ever acted this way before?

Customer: It's been like 4-5 years but lately these past few months she has been crying and showing signs of fear for her soul. The most troubling part is that she said if she can think go on like this or she might lose her mind and in the process commit suicide to end that feeling.
DoctorZ :

Oh wow I am so sorry that she is going through this. And you are definitely right if she is so depressed/anxious over this that she may think about suicide. Have you considered having a meeting with her and her religious leader at her local religious institution? Perhaps she will listen to him/her about how the Bible says that God is merciful and will not automatically send her to hell for one sin.

DoctorZ :

Normally Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) would help your daughter with these symptoms and ruminations, but I think she may not be responsive to that because of her religious beliefs, so speaking with a religious authority may help relieve some her anxiety and depression over this issue.

Customer: No, I haven't tried consulting a priest yet. I will if i see and feel that she is beyond help. That is why I am seeking your advice. Three years ago, we had her see a family psychologist too about other concerns of her and somehow it help a bit. But this time even I am scared for her.
DoctorZ :

Well she would have to voluntarily seek therapy to get any benefit from it, like I said I recommend Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Or if you feel that she is in imminent danger of hurting yourself, you can have her involuntary committed for a short period of time that will require her to get treatment so that she does not hurt herself. I will give you a link as an example of a technique I use for patient in CBT

DoctorZ :

This is called a thought record, it will help her keep track of any negative thoughts she may have. She puts the negative thought on paper, the emotion accompanying, the evidence to support it, and the evidence against it. Then I want her to come up with an alternative thought for the situation (more positive and plausible). This will help her change your way of thinking to be able to think more positive and not automatically go to a negative type of thinking.

DoctorZ :

It will help her see her negative thoughts on paper and how the evidence does not support those negative thoughts then she will have to come up with a more plausible positive thought, this will help lessen her feelings of depression

DoctorZ :

Sometimes if her symptoms are very severe, then immediate anti-depressant medication may be necessary to help her alleviate those symptoms

Customer: Are these anti-depressant medications strong that might affect her brain or something in the long run? Can this be bought over the counter in pharmacy stores?
DoctorZ :

Unfortunately anti-depressant medication can be bought over the counter, it must be prescribed by a physician. Most anti-depressant medications do not effect individuals in the long term, but there are always rare side effects to some medications (typically less than one percent of the population are effected by these side effects). If you wanted to buy something over the counter for your daughter, Omega-3 supplements have been shown to help individuals with depressive symptoms, but not as well as prescription anti-depressants.

DoctorZ :

Sorry in the beginning of my last statement I meant *CANNOT be bought over the counter

Customer: I am not sure if all of this thinking of hers might be a post effect of her brain medication when she was a kid. Since she was 2 years old until 7, she suffered from seizure convulsion but before she turned 8 the doctor said according to the result of her EEG, her brainwaves are now normal. So following the doctors advice, I slowly stopped her medication.
DoctorZ :

May I ask what seizure disorder she was diagnosed with and what anti-convulsant medication she was on when she was younger?

DoctorZ :

The reason I am asking is because it is possible that the medication may be causing this type of thinking you are concerned of and I just want to make sure if there are any side effects from the medication she was on when she was younger

Customer: I honestly forgot what type of seizure she was diagnosed and the name of the medication. I can remember that she had an attack whenever she has a fever even if her fever doesn't even reach 38. And like every month or two, we visit the doctor for EEG exams. There was one time that even though the nurses at the hospital submerged her in a tub filled with ice, her seizure didn't stop for like 30 seconds and after that the doctor told us that this might cause brain damage or worst she might become a retardate.
Customer: The doctor said that no oxygen supply in her brain for those 30 mins..and just gave us warning what might happen to her.
DoctorZ :

Well it is possible that the no oxygen may have caused brain damage, but you would see those effects immediately not years later, so I do not think that the antiseizure medication caused any long term effects to your daughter, but it may be a possibility. I think because you saw improvement with her when she was seeing a psychologist, she may benefit from further therapy.

Customer: Would you be able to suggest a psychologist for her? Where and how i could contact the psychologist and how much would it cost me to consult one for her? I am not financially able to afford the rate of psychologist nowadays.
DoctorZ :

Well i can suggest a psychologist in your area, but I am not never sure of their prices as they change. Most therapists work on a sliding scale so they can be more affordable for individuals with low income. Also her priest may know someone that can provide her with therapy (a lot of priests have referred their parishioners to therapy before). What city and state does your daughter live in?

Customer: We are in Downtown San Francisco.
Customer: In California
DoctorZ :

Oh wow, I actually live in Santa Clara, so I am really close to you. Give me a second to find you a few therapists in your area

Customer: Thank you
DoctorZ :

This therapist has specialties in Depression, CBT, and spirituality, so she can help and she works on a sliding scale.

DoctorZ :

This one also works on a sliding scale and has specialties that can help treat your daughter

DoctorZ :

Sorry wrong link for that therapist. Here it is

DoctorZ :

This one is good too

Customer: Is this a website to find and contact the therapist that you recommend? Do you have an email address nor contact number I could call?
DoctorZ :

This links have their phone numbers to contact them and their addresses as well. I can try to find their email addresses as well, but I believe they will respond faster by phone if you call

DoctorZ :

There is also an email link in the webpages that I provided that will go directly to the therapist if you choose to use it

DoctorZ :

I have met this therapist before and she is really good and professional. She also works on a sliding scale and I think your daughter would get a lot of benefit from her treatment

Customer: Thank you DoctorZ you've been a great help.
DoctorZ :

I think those 4 therapists are very well trained and have specialties in areas that can help your daughter and all of them work on a sliding scale that can accommodate you and provide you with a lower price for their services

DoctorZ :

Anytime, I am always happy to help

DoctorZ :

Is there anything else I can do to assist you tonight?

Customer: You've been very helpful...again than you!
DoctorZ :

I am glad that I helped you tonight. If you have any other questions or concerns please feel free to contact me at anytime

DoctorZ :

I wish you and your daughter the best of luck

DoctorZ :

I hope I provided you with excellent service tonight

Customer: And the same to you!
DoctorZ :

Thank you :)

DoctorZ :

Before you sign off though, I would very much appreciate if you could rate my performance in helping you so that I can get credit for this question. Thank you very much

Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5058
Experience: Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
Dr. Z and 3 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

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