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Judy Collins Still Suffers
From The Psychic Pain

By Tim Boxer

FTER warming up the audience with an a cappella version of her hit Both Sides Now, Judy Collins spoke about the importance of psychology: "My life is a miracle because of the help of people like you. You are in the vanguard of all of this good work."

The legendary singer, songwriter and mental health advocate, who turned 70 in May 2009, spoke at the 50th anniversary gala of Yeshiva Universityís Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology at a gala dinner two years ago at the United Nations.

She recalled her father who was in radio. He raised five children in a family with lots of contradictions.

"Dad was blind by the age of four. He was not going to let anything stop him from succeeding in life. He was an alcoholic. You couldnít talk about his drinking. That was a secret. I watched him struggle with that battle.

"At age 14 I made an attempt on my life. When I came to New York I got therapy. Itís in the lease.

"I canít drink today, I canít use drugs today, I canít take my life today. Itís with the help of people like you. I believe rehab works."

Collins mentioned her troubled son, Clark. He went through years "in a kind of darkness." He tried to get help, "but you canít judge whatís happening inside."

She said Clark "went into a relapse and took his own life. My son is with me all the time. So many people are suffering from psychic pain."

The dinner honored Eugene and Estelle Ferkauf, founding benefactors of the school. He is the founder of the legendary discount retailer E. J. Korvetteís.

Drs. Moshe Anisfeld, Irma Hilton, and Lillian Zach, founding faculty at the school, were also saluted. Dr. Kelly Posner Gerstenhaber an expert on the relationship between antidepressants and suicide in children, was cited as this yearís Distinguished Alumna.

Dr. Robert Gordon and Dr. Robin Hirtz Meltzer served as dinner co-chairs.


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