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Ask the Rock Doc: 
Sound Advice for a Song 
By psychologist Dr. Bruce L. Thiessen, aka Dr. BLT
Rock Doc Theme Song

Certain details in the following correspondence may be altered to protect the confidentiality of the inquiring party, and to more adequately illustrate certain spiritual and psychological points. 

Dear Rock Doc:

I am now officially too old to rock n roll.   I turn 55 next year.  Iím an extremely depressed child of the sixties.  I was in a band called Deer in the Headlights.  We opened for some pretty big acts, but I admit, we werenít very good, and we were stoned all the time.  I sang back-up, and it was just so I could go to all of the parties and meet the big stars.  I was more of a professional groupie than a professional singer, and I  used to follow around all the bands. 

I used to brag about all of the famous rock stars I slept with.  My husband, who was part of what was then called the Jesus movement (a big fan of Barry McGuire whom youíve interviewed in the past too), led me to Christ back in the 70s when we first met, and since then I have been deeply ashamed of my past.  I suffer with extreme guilt over my poor sexual judgment.  I know that Jesus has forgiven all of my sins.  I know this in my head, but my heart is not convinced.  Sometimes Iíve even thought about suicide, but Iím too chicken to take my own life.  Can you help?

Guilty Groupie

Dear Guilty Groupie:

The first issue of concern to me is your feeling of utter hopelessness and despair----the type of despair that has you entertaining thoughts of harming yourself.  You need to seek immediate professional attention because this type of depression is very severe and requires immediate intervention.   You should see both a psychiatrist, to see if medication may be required, and a psychologist, who can help you explore issues contributing to your present state of despair, hopelessness, and subjective guilt.

I use the term subjective guilt, because, being a Child of God, you are no longer objectively guilty of your sins.  No matter how strong your feelings of guilt may be, Jesus has removed your sins from you ďas far as the east is from the west.Ē Knowing about the forgiveness Christ offers and feeling it, are often two different things. 

The kind of guilt you seem to be experiencing is both a symptom of the depression you suffer, and a spiritual struggle.  It sounds like your years as a groupie where chaotic.  I donít know anything about your childhood, but I wouldnít be surprised if it was also marked by chaos.  Sexual promiscuity in the teen years and beyond are often characteristic of individuals who were molested as children, and Iím curious about whether you recall being sexually abused in any way, either as a child, or as a young adult.  Physical abuse, neglect and emotional abuse can also manifest itself in some of the same ways that sexual abuse does. 

Seeking after rock stars is a way that teen girls often try to find a sense of self-worth.  Sleeping with them gives a teen-age girl suffering from low self esteem, the temporary sense that she is somebody.  Unfortunately the outcome of seeking this type of validation is often the opposite of the desired and expected outcome.   For a teen-age girl who is also bored, or inadequately challenged in terms of academic or vocational life, this sort of activity can provide a highest level of stimulation and intense excitement.  But it is obviously that you began to see what an endless roller coaster ride that lifestyle can be and you eventually asked to get off the ride. 

Emotional and spiritual restoration is required to assuage the painful guilt and depression you feel.  The healing process will take careful, prayerful exploration.  Since the guilt you feel has obvious implications for your walk with the Lord, it will be important that the professionals you work with share your faith.  If you let me know the area where you live, I can possibly provide you with a few referrals. 

Furthermore, though, in the past, you used music to get to the big rock stars, I would suggest that you now turn to music for a different purpose.  There is something about guilt and music that donít go together very well.  While one can sit through an entire sermon about Godís grace, and still end up feeling guilty, there is something about singing about the forgiveness, grace and redemptive power of the blood of Jesus that makes it almost impossible for guilt feelings to stick around.  Iím sure you are a better musician than you give yourself credit for, and even if youíre not, I still believe that music can have a restorative function in your life if you become more involved with it. 

Jesus did not judge the woman caught in adultery, but simply said, ďGo and sin no more.Ē  Neither do I condemn you.  The time to stop punishing yourself is now.  To accomplish this personal mission, you will need your husband, your friends, other members of your family, and above all, the savior of the world, who died to pay for the sins of all humanity, to bring you to a place where you can forgive yourself.  You may even need an angel, like the angel in this song, based on a particular scene in the movie, Itís a Wonderful Life, starring Jimmy Stewart (itís also a free mp3 download for all who visit here:

Waiting for Wings
Dr. BLT ft. Andre Champayne
Words and music by Dr. BLT © 2006
http://www.drblt.net/music/waiting.mp3

Let me know when youíve learned how to set yourself free.  This Christmas, I want you, not only to know the peace that comes with the message underlying the Christmas story, I want you to feel it deep inside your heart, your psyche, and your soul.  God Bless!

PS: Youíre never too old to rock Ďní roll. 

If youíre a musician in distress, or a family member or friend of one, write Dr. BLT at 
drblt@drblt.net 
 

Dr. BLT, aka Dr. Bruce L. Thiessen, is a Christ-centered licensed clinical psychologist and university instructor who specializes in the psychology of modern music.  He uses his original songs as well as those of other artists to address the problems of his patients, including his biggest, sickest, most challenging patient--society.

His face and name recognition, particularly with teens, comes from his short part on a long Cake music video--the Cake video for ďShort Skirt/Long JacketĒ that earned the band a nomination for Ground Breaking Music Video of the Year on the 2002 MTV Video Music Awards. 


 
 
 
 

 

 
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