Finally, the truth: our ‘mental health crisis’ is Climate Grief/Anxiety.

The latest episode of the New Yorker Radio Hour (actually only 15 minutes) features Lise Van Susteren, a Dr. telling the full truth of what ails our young people. She also talks about the most hopeful thing I have heard in my whole life: our young people are suing the US Government (with James Hansen) as well as the State of Montana.

Check out the episode. I cannot recommend it enough, seriously. Here’s the link again!

For more, I would humbly add several of my own posts on this as well, which fit perfectly together with Van Susteren’s conclusions:

(Oh, I noticed her use of a train metaphor LOL)

The most important part of the episode is the “secret sauce” (I’m actually quoting the Doctor): the cure is to take action.

Check out my series on Reintegrating with Nature, the most personal action, but also the most personally important:

There are no psychotropics that will medicate us out of our grief for what we are losing and our anxiety for what is coming:

Along with Robin Wall Kimmerer, Dr. Van Susteren acknowledges that in our everyday lives there is nothing as important as working with the soil to grow sustenance with produce and to sustain our growth with beauty:

But as the Dr. says, the difference between our children and us, especially the middle-aged and our elders, is that we have the ability to act in ways our children do not. Even if all we can do is vote, as for most of us, it’s time to vote with our grandchildren’s interests in mind—or their grandchildren’s if you already have grandchildren. But for those among us with power or a public voice, the duty does certainly fall to you.

ps, the Doctor mentions Pre-Traumatic Stress Disorder as something novel and related to the destruction of our planet. My own childhood bears out that there is nothing novel about Pre-TSD for any LGBTQ+ individual who knew they’d have to come out and knew they’d receive a hostile reception. Our community has extensive experience with Pre-TSD; so it falls on us to share what we’ve learned of it to help our children cope.

6 responses to “Finally, the truth: our ‘mental health crisis’ is Climate Grief/Anxiety.”

  1. That is a good study on serotonin. There are also many good studies showing that antidepressants do result in alleviation of depression. The drugs work. The study you mention does not address that question, it only addresses causes. More research is needed on the question of why the drugs are effective. There is s lot we don’t know about depression and workings of the brain.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. These drugs cause something that some people interpret as alleviation. That is different from an objective measure of healing. From years of experience, I didn’t see healing anywhere in sight; it was farther away. They numb and separate self from self; they don’t solve the problems underlying depression. Poverty can’t be medicated away, just as wealth can’t teach truth to those born into it: medication and wealth separate from truth. Changing one’s circumstances is important; but more important is recognizing the systems that harm us all in different ways to different degrees.


      1. Whoops I should’ve said: I’m not opposed to psychotropics entirely. Nothing has done more for me than Adderall once I’d finally realized I had AD/HD.

        But also I should have elaborated that many people, myself included, fool themselves into believing this or that medication works out of desperation that something works; most people though go from cocktail to cocktail believing they are the issue individually. I posted about this also; I think the title is “Is It You Or Is It The Systems?” Drug companies profit handsomely off of our societal dysfunction. It’s sad to me.


      2. You are right, the brain does not heal, but the dugs allow some people to lead a better life. Not everyone benefits. The last figures I saw showed one third are helped a lot, one third somewhat, and one third not at all. The drugs in some people regulate and stabilize mood disorders so the person can function. And that can be a numbing effect. The person’s emotional highs and lows are smoothed out, and that can be felt as numb. That sometimes is temporary, and sometimes the dosage has to be adjusted. The person feels different because the brain is working differently. Once something goes wrong when the brain is growing and developing, there us no going back to a normally functioning brain. Meditation can help the brain repair itself, but in the meantime medication can help some people function well enough to live with their family and hold a job.


      3. I’d really hope we’re realizing that health is not measured by one’s capacity to be exploited within systems that are at the root of the problem. Medicines treat symptoms; we need to be treating the cause (systems) not symptoms (experienced in individuals). It’s hard to think outside pathologizing paradigms, but I promise things make so much more sense on the other side of them.


      4. We should be working on changing the system to eliminate the root causes. I don’t know what changes should be made. Lots of opinions are going around about that.

        Liked by 1 person

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