Dreaming of a Dark Christmas

By Jim Selman | Bio

I am one of the folks who love Christmas. I am not particularly sentimental, nor am I into elaborate decorating or gift-giving. I just like the music and the general shift in mood that seems to come with the season. I recognize, however, that not everyone is ‘happy’ around Christmas time. This is the season for lots of ‘relapses’ in 12-Step programs, a ‘blip’ in suicides, and (of course) the usual problems associated with too many parties and too much alcohol. Whatever the reasons, there is definitely a dark side to Christmas.

As I’ve grown older, I see more clearly how difficult this time of year can be for many people. For many families, Christmas is about children and ‘Baby Jesus’. But for some, there is a sense of failure and defeat in not having ‘enough’ to participate in the economic gift-giving juggernaut: for others, a kind of ‘reactivation’ associated with family reunions and memories of Christmas past. Some experience a kind of generic depression associated with too many people

read more