This Week's Program

This week's featured story

Obsessive Compulsive

Debbie is an accomplished musician who grew up the child of missionary parents in Africa. Her illness and struggle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) first appeared around age 11. She recalls not wanting to live, but feeling unable to talk about those feelings. She felt she existed to please others. After being baptized, Debbie felt she had to be perfect. Her compulsions became full-blown. She had to practice perfect piano scales, repeating them far more often than any teacher demanded.

Listen - Transcript - Study Guide

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My Turn

Sam Heatwole, this week's My Turn author

Frog Hollow

Sam Heatwole

Some days when I turn down the Frog Hollow road, there’s a feeling of slowing down, a break with the primal screams of tormented technology, a return to the quiet sounds of nature. An old friend of ours who ran a restaurant in town before he went blind used to complain about the noise levels at our place. “How can you stand the quiet?” he asked. He loved to visit, but was always glad to get back to the familiar roar of the city. “People noise,” he called it. Why does he prefer the city? Beats me.

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This Week's Resources

NBC-TV network is airing Shadow Voices: Finding Hope in Mental Illness, which includes interviews with Debbie and many others from June 12 to Dec. 11 at the discretion of local stations. Check the schedule of stations airing this special in the NBC-TV Horizons of the Spirit series.  

The Shadow Voices documentary offers an inside look at what it is like to live with a mental illness and how individuals and their families find their way through medical, governmental, societal and spiritual issues. 

Trailer for Shadow Voices

A Shadow Voices companion website, is available with stories, biographies, quotes from all of the main participants in the Shadow Voices documentary, including much more background and detail from Debbie’s story here.

How I Stayed Alive When My Brain Was Trying to Kill Me
by Susan Rose Blauner is a book Debbie recommends. It is not specifically on OCD but Debbie found it extremely helpful when she was deeply depressed by her situation. From a review on Amazon: “[This] is not merely a personal tale of survival from mental illness. It is primarily a manual, a reference book, a resource for people who have suicidal thoughts. Although the book is guided by the author's own experiences with mental illness and suicide attempts, it is written not to chronicle her life but to provide direction and guidance for others in the same situation. And as such, it is an undeniable success.” (Review by Curtis Edmonds) 

Frog Hollow Journal. Sam Heatwole, “My Turn” speaker for this edition of Shaping Families, reads excerpts from Frog Hollow Journal, written by his father-in-law, James G. T. Fairfield. It is a colorful memoir with vividly drawn neighbors, family members, and a community. It is the story of one family’s quest to carve out a more authentic life amid the demands of modern society. Available here for $15.95. 

Related Resources

The OCD Workbook: Your Guide to Breaking Free from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder [Paperback] by Bruce M., Ph.D. Hyman and Cherry Pedrick

The OCD Workbook has helped thousands of people with OCD break the bonds of troubling OCD symptoms and regain the hope of a productive life. Endorsed and used in hospitals and clinics the world over, this valuable resource is now fully revised and updated with the latest evidence-based approaches to understanding and managing OCD.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder for Dummies [Paperback] Charles H. Elliott PhD (Author), Laura L. Smith PhD (Author). The “Dummies” series gives practical and easy to understand information on a variety of topics.

Online support group with various discussion threads people can join: health blogs, expert answers, more. Free, anonymous support from others with OCD.

Anxiety Disorders Association of America

Mental Health Ministries

Burton's Blog

No "Monk" Experience

Burton Buller

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder made for entertaining episodes on the now defunct “Monk” television series. Mr. Monk, while suffering from significant obsessive compulsive behaviors, also possessed heightened sensory perceptions that allowed him to solve mysterious crimes that befuddled and perplexed the ordinary crime investigator.
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Next Week

Re-entry after prison.

An apartment that keeps flooding. A son who is terrified to go outside to play. Walking past drug dealers to get into your home. All of these were present in Ellen’s living situation when we interviewed her for next week’s Shaping Families program. Ellen had gotten involved in drugs herself, spent time in prison, and was trying to re-establish her life outside—a huge hurdle for anyone released from incarceration. Hear what it is like for families going through such difficulties.

Favorite Family Recipes

Grilled Salmon

Grilled SalmonAn often-requested dish for family birthdays in Betty Hertzler's family, here's a dish to kick off your spring and summer grilling season.
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Listen & Talk!

Real Life. Real Families. Listen and Talk Series I

Material for any group setting where you want to discuss marriage/parenting topics. A 12-session guide featuring Shaping Families audio interviews, along with Bible texts, prayers, discussion questions, and activities. Order book with three CDs or download here.

Current Offer

Offers no longer available. All offers at the end of transcripts or podcasts for free resources (booklets, DVDs, pamphlet and more) are no longer available. Many of them are, however, available for purchase at the MennoMedia store where there are additional resources on family living, personal growth, faith development and Mennonite cookbooks.