Grammy-Winning Gospel Singer Tasha Cobbs Opens Up About Suffering Depression, Going Through Therapy, & Encouraging the Church to Talk About Mental Health

Tasha Cobbs performs "Break Every Chain" at the 44th Annual GMA Dove Awards on October 15, 2013 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Rick Diamond/Getty)
Tasha Cobbs performs “Break Every Chain” at the 44th Annual GMA Dove Awards on October 15, 2013 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Rick Diamond/Getty)

Growing up, I had always had these deeply sad feelings. I assumed it was just me and there was something wrong with me. The moment I realized there was something deeper going on was in 2007 when I was the worship pastor at my church. I had been leading our worship ministry for about four or five years and throughout those years I would go to church, hug everybody, smile in everybody’s face, kiss babies, etc.

I could get up and sing and watch people be delivered and set free and experience freedom in their lives, and yet I would go home and be under the covers, with the curtains closed, not eating, never coming out of my room for days at a time. My cousin Shaniqua—who was my roommate at the time—knew the routine: We would come home from church. I would get undressed, put on something huge and lay in the bed and stay there – for days. This time I had been in the bed for three or four days and I hadn’t left my room. The house was completely dark; curtains closed, and the sadness was so heavy in that house that she literally moved out and moved into my pastor’s house for that week because it was just too heavy for her.

Under those covers I would tell myself things like, ‘Nobody wants you, they only want you for your gifts; they only want you for your talents. People only want you for what you have to offer but nobody is giving back to you.’ Of course it was all untrue. I had so many people around me who loved me, but for some reason I was stuck in this place of rejection where no matter how good I am or how much I do, or how much I offer, it felt like it wasn’t enough. I would cry for hours. Sometimes I wouldn’t even know why I was crying. It was just a heaviness that comes over you that you just cannot explain.

During that time, something in my spirit said, ‘Tasha, you have to do something about this.’ It was just a moment where I felt like I couldn’t move forward in my career and in my ministry if I kept allowing myself to be in this place. I thought, ‘At some point somebody is going to find out and it’s going to get much bigger than what I’m able to handle.’ So I got up to do some research and I started studying depression. I called my cousin Shaniqua, and my pastor, to tell them I thought I knew what was wrong with me. I immediately found a therapist so that I could begin talking about what was happening with me.

My therapist diagnosed it as depression. I know what you’re thinking: Tasha Cobbs, Grammy-winning gospel singer, depression? Yes, depression.

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SOURCE: Essence – Yolanda Sangweni