Gospel Singer Tasha Cobbs Says Black Church Can Help With Depression

Tasha Ward

Tasha Cobbs’ journey to award-winning and chart-topping success as a gospel singer has come with both praise and self-discovery.
The 34-year-old has publicly shared her personal testimonial battling depression through the years, and is dedicated to inspiring others dealing with the same issue.
After years of masking her sadness and self-neglect, Cobbs says she decided to seek professional help in 2010 prior to the release of her debut independent project, “Smile.”

“I’ve been very active in ministry all of my life. Just always been a hard worker. So I think throughout those years sometimes you can develop habits and ways of life that are not so healthy for you; but you’re not aware of it because you’re so busy focused on careers and other things,” Cobbs said during an interview with The Huffington Post. “So I believe that, for years, that was something that was building up and maybe I didn’t focus on it until that one day, in 2010, when I was at home lying in the bed, and I realized that I’ve been there for three days in a dark room with the curtains closed and the covers over my head, and I’m thinking, ‘Ok, Tasha, this is abnormal.’ I think that was the moment when it reached the climax, where it was like ‘you have to deal with this before it becomes a major issue for you moving forward.’”

Following her epiphany, Cobbs was diagnosed with depression after attending her first therapy consultation, where she discussed her various symptoms. Now, the singer says she still attends therapy sessions once every month to make sure she stays “connected” with her therapist.
While there is a stigma attached to mental health issues in the black community and it is often viewed as a taboo topic to even discuss, Cobbs believes the issue should be considered a health priority — similar to other serious medical conditions.

“I think when you say ‘mental health,’ automatically people think ‘I’m not crazy,’ because we haven’t put a definition to exactly what we’re saying,” she said. “I believe when you say ‘it’s a mental health issue,’ it’s like having diabetes or something’s wrong with my toes or whatever the case is — it’s a medical condition and it can be dealt with. Just like you can manage a broken finger, you can manage mental health issues. I am a living witness that you can be freed and you can be cured and healed from it, but you have to first acknowledge that it exists.”

Moving forward, the Grammy Award winner wants to address the treatment of depression in the black community by doing things like hosting therapy sessions at church conferences for people who may never have considered seeking therapy in the past.
“I believe churches will begin to open up their doors for more focus on this,” she said.

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