Yes, it’s true… The holidays are a time of togetherness–with lots of fun and laughter (or so it should be, right?). But, there’s more to the holidays than all the merriment…

For some (even many), this time of year can also be one of the most depressing and most tragic times of the year. It’s a time of remembering all that we’ve lost, and it’s particularly difficult for those who are alone.

Depressing Time of the Year: Scrooge

Just think about some of our favorite Christmas classics, and you can see examples of why the holidays might not be so merry for everyone…  Through most of A Christmas Carol, Scrooge is a lonely old man, who sits in his dungeon of a house. Sure, he’s wealthy, but he has lost family, friends and all that would seem to have made his life worthwhile. But, he also has real psychological issues.

Gene D. Cohen, acting director of the National Institute on Aging, explains: “Dickens showed the course of depression in aging, showed that it is never too late to intervene and showed the value of psychotherapy 50 years before Freud’s classic work on the interpretation of dreams.”

The Ghosts As Psychotherapy?

In A Christmas Carol, the Ghosts of the Past, Present and Future cause Scrooge to reflect on his life — as it has been, as it is currently and also to anticipate what will happen if he continues on his path toward self-destruction. But, those letters etched in stone are not permanent. His fate is changeable, malleable and subject to his own personal actions and intentions.



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