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  • Writer's picturebencrumpler

Depression, the Black Dog: Exploring the Healing Power of Counselling


In the realm of mental health, depression remains a prevalent and challenging adversary. With an estimated 1 in 6 people experiencing moderate to severe depressive symptoms ( - Dec'22), it is essential to shed light on this condition and the potential paths to recovery.

In this blog, we'll delve into the complexities of depression, its potential causes, traditional treatment approaches, and the transformative benefits of counselling in guiding individuals toward healing and hope.

It probably goes without saying that it is an area I am very passionate about and my work as a therapist, as well as being a Samaritans listener, often involves a lot of work with people who are depressed. I have spent a lot of time studying these issues and exploring what works and how people get themselves out of such a difficult mental condition.

Unveiling Depression: More Than Sadness

Depression is a profound mental health condition that extends beyond fleeting feelings of unhappiness.

Persistently feeling sad for weeks or months sets depression apart from temporary emotional lows. Yet, it is often misunderstood or trivialised by some who fail to recognise it as a genuine health condition. However, depression is a real illness with real symptoms, and seeking support is essential for healing and recovery.

Understanding the Depths:The Causes of Depression

The origins of depression are intricate, with a myriad of factors contributing to its development. While the medical model may cite chemical imbalances in the brain, it is crucial to recognise that depression often emerges from various sources, such as distressing life events, relationship challenges, illness (physical or mental), and unresolved historic traumas.

Traditional Treatment: The Role of SSRIs

The medical model commonly prescribes Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) to address the perceived chemical imbalances associated with depression. While these medications have proven beneficial for many, the complexity of depression calls for a holistic approach that goes beyond pharmacological intervention.

Beyond Medication: Counselling as a Healing Pathway

Counselling stands as a powerful ally in the journey to combat depression. It offers a safe and supportive space for individuals to explore their emotions, thoughts, and life experiences without judgment. Unlike medication, counselling addresses the root causes of depression and empowers individuals to develop coping strategies and resilience.

The Power of Counselling in Navigating Depression:

  • Understanding the Self: Counselling provides a platform to delve into personal challenges and gain insights into one's emotional landscape. Understanding oneself better paves the way for growth and healing.

  • Challenging Negative Patterns: Unhealthy patterns of thought and behavior can perpetuate depression. Counselling helps identify and challenge these patterns, paving the way for positive change.

  • Embracing Change: Humans can fall into unproductive behaviors or thought patterns. Counselling facilitates exploration, empowering individuals to embrace change and create healthier habits.

  • Rediscovering Purpose: Depression can lead to a sense of aimlessness. Counselling helps individuals rediscover purpose, passion, and direction in life.

  • Resilience Building: Through counselling, individuals build emotional resilience, enabling them to cope with life's challenges and bounce back from adversity.

Embracing the Therapeutic Journey:

In the journey of counselling, individuals find a therapeutic relationship that offers validation, empathy, and a space for genuine self-expression. Skilled therapists work collaboratively with clients to set achievable goals, charting a path toward healing and well-being.


Depression, often likened to a relentless black dog, can cast shadows over our lives. Yet, with the support of counselling, we can confront this adversary with strength and courage. By exploring the depths of our emotions and experiences, counselling leads us towards healing, resilience, and a renewed sense of purpose.

If you find yourself grappling with depression's weight, remember that counselling is a beacon of hope, guiding you towards a brighter and more fulfilling life. Reach out and take the first step on this transformative journey of self-discovery and healing. Together, we can unveil the beauty that lies beyond the darkness of depression.

If you think I can help, then I would love to hear from you, Ben of Therapy with Ben. We can speak by email or text and arrange a phone call and see what works for you, it is your journey after all.

Take care,


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