Ruth, I realized, wasn't just amorphously "depressed"--she was homesick.
I restudied her case and considered some different repertory rubrics:
* Mind; Homesickness
* Mind; Ailments from being neglected by one's father
* Mind; Ailments from being rejected
* Mind; Ailments from bad news
* Mind; Sadness, in pining boys [this applies even to females]
* Mind; Despair, thinks he is lost
* Mind; Haughty
* Mind; Anger; at absent persons, while thinking of them
* Mind; Censorious, toward oneself
* Generals; Lassitude, morning, in bed
* Generals; Uncovering, aversion to
The remedy Aurum metallicum was in every one of these rubrics. Why hadn't I seen it before? I wondered whether my inability to see Ruth's need for Aurum metallicum straight away was because of my own bias about the remedy: Aurum is generally considered the default remedy for "depression" with suicidal thoughts, which were not an issue for Ruth. But Aurum also addresses a very particular kind of depression that includes not only deep longing (her homesickness) but also being worse at night and waking with despair and resentfulness. Like Ruth, people who need Aurum can be haughty even though they are also very hard on themselves; they criticize others because they criticize themselves. Due to their high standards, they have to be the best they can be--hence her word "spectacular."