If the Prodigal Son had Xanax...

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If you are here from The Mighty, welcome! Here's three other stories you might want to check out:

  1. The Psych Ward and the Church
  2. Living Through the Aftermath of My Mom's Suicide
  3. Dingy Socks & Panic Attacks

Anxiety has been my constant companion for as long as I can remember. For several years, I lived under a cloud of shame because of it. I believed I would never find true belonging if anyone knew the real issues I faced on a daily basis.

Until I could no longer hide.

A failed suicide attempt forced me to face myself. At first, all I wanted to do was disconnect from anyone and anything that seemed more “normal” than me. And everyone seems more normal than you feel when you’ve just been discharged from the psych ward. I didn't want anyone to know my story, or the details of the journey that eventually landed me in an ICU. I didn't want my family to know, and I certainly didn't want to face the Church.

Like so many others, I thought life came with two choices: be a normal Christian guy, or be crazy. I felt stuck. Lost.

I wonder if the Prodigal Son was feeling like me. The parable certainly implies he was humiliated. If the Prodigal Son had been able to work through the smothering lies that come with shame, would he have come home sooner? I’ve heard others ask it this way: “If the Prodigal Son had Xanax, would he have ever come home?”

I'm honored to tell the rest of this story on Morgan Guyton's blog.

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