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Message Board > Miscellaneous > Sewing and Mental Health ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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Sewing and Mental Health
WantToSewAgain
WantToSewAgain
Advanced Beginner
CA USA
Member since 6/15/11
Posts: 96
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Date: 6/10/13 12:16 PM

I saw this article today article

What do you think? Does sewing help your mental health?

s.gopalan
s.gopalan
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Date: 6/10/13 12:39 PM

Absolutely, I think it does!

------
usis

Franksdottir

Franksdottir  Friend of PR
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In reply to WantToSewAgain <<
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Date: 6/10/13 1:00 PM

I think it is always helpful for people to have an absorbing interest and to be creative. For folks like us, sewing is one way to do it. For other people it might be another interest, I know my mother was big on doing stained glass work when I was a teen - she disliked sewing although she was very good at it.

My daughter is making small, felted animals at the moment and having fun. I would rather quilt, but it is the same impulse.

------
Barb

AdaH
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AdaH  Friend of PR
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Date: 6/10/13 5:26 PM

I think it depends on how serious the depression is. I have experienced depression a number of times in my life. When seriously depressed, just getting thur the day takes all your energy. You just do not feel like doing anything. In fact not wanting to sew was a sure sign that depression was lurking.

------
Ada

petro
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Date: 6/11/13 4:06 AM

It helps me. Its a modestly creative activity, which doesn't carry the baggage of self doubt associated with the bigger creating styles like 'write a novel' , 'paint a picture', 'compose music'. It can be absorbing, but also be put aside or chucked in the bin without any great wrench. Its a small place where I am in control (mostly) of what happens. Its easily justifiable, being useful it doesn't burden you with the selfish time angst as much as other distractions. It needs just enough concentration to pull your mind off the treadmill of unhappy thoughts and problems without solution. Its moderately social, but also introverted. If truly desperate I can always dive into a fabric ashram. I don't think it cures depression, no, but it yells at the black dog to get back in its kennel.

Sharon1952
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Date: 6/11/13 6:46 AM

I have used sewing and knitting to get me through some depressing times. I think keeping the hands busy slows down the mind. In my volunteer work with troubled teen girls I know that giving them a craft to focus on opens up the communication faster than just sitting around waiting for them to talk. There is something about being occupied that frees you to speak- especially if you don't have to make eye contact because you're busy crafting. I don't know exactly why it works- but it does.

------
Sewing: A creative mess is better than tidy idleness. ~Author Unknown

tourist
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Date: 6/11/13 9:47 AM

Sewing is definitely good for general mental health and probably has helped many people over a "bump" or two. The article doesn't make any claims about curing serious mental illness, but rather focuses on it being a good activity to help stay healthy.

Not sure how much sewing they will do, though. The photo shows machines but everyone is knitting and there is a lot of mention of other crafting activities. Not that there's anything wrong with that...

------
http://bgballroom.wordpress.com to follow the progress on my next ballgown.

stirwatersblue
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stirwatersblue
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In reply to petro <<
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Date: 6/11/13 12:50 PM

Quote: petro
It helps me. Its a modestly creative activity, which doesn't carry the baggage of self doubt associated with the bigger creating styles like 'write a novel...'

This made me laugh out loud, because... I actually am a novelist, and for me, OH YES IT DOES! My self-doubt about writing typically comes hand-in-hand with self-doubt about sewing, and from there it's a quick (though temporary!) spiral into darkness, and I march around my house, trying to think of alternate career paths that don't involve creativity. I usually come back to being an archaeology lab tech, where I think it would be quite soothing to clean rock from fossils with a single-haired paintbrush and a dental pick.

...But that's just me.

------
~Gem in the prairie

BriarRose
BriarRose
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WY USA
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Date: 6/12/13 1:57 AM

If I were half as confident about my sewing ability as I am my writing ability I'd be sitting at my machine this instant instead of at the computer. I can generally make words say exactly what I want them to say, but to consistently make certain recalcitrant fabrics behave as I want them to behave- HA!

However when all is going smoothly sewing can be a perfectly Zen experience.

------
I've quit fighting my inner demons. We're on the same side now.

quiltingwolf
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quiltingwolf  Friend of PR
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Date: 6/12/13 11:48 AM

I think it helps you get through stuff, actually I don't think I know. However as one pointed out if you are seriously depressed it's hard to even think about doing it. I couldn't sew for months after my darling Nicky passed. She always sewed with me. Actually she did just about everything with me and was never more then 3 feet away from me at any given time. I think it helps your mental health by giving you confidence in creating something. Sometimes you can just think too much on something and sewing helps you focus on other stuff. But that's if you sew.

------
quiltingwolf.blogspot.com

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