I have had little direct contact with people having schizophrenia or those who love and support people who have this illness. In my class we read about it and heard from parents and siblings who care for those with this brain disorder. How frightening and bizarre the behaviors seem to be. These people who are involved in the care of these individuals are among my unsung heroes. Like other brain disorders they may never reach or recapture their former potential, but are able with the right medication and support system to lead productive and good lives.
Our guest, a young man in his thirties with schizoaffective disorder entered accompanied by his dad. We knew a lot about Justin through our program. He shared that he also has OCD and ADHD. He was healthy looking, charming with a great sense of humor. He told his story as we sat in awe of his courage and strength. His dad afterwards gave some other insight into happenings and scary times parents go through. We clearly understood now the pride his mother has for her son’s journey, but knew the road they had traveled was filled with hardship and hard work. The best part for the group was knowing that the effort to get well is worth it, and support and education truly pays off in the long run. It’s a marathon not a sprint. The session ended on a happy note , leaving everyone feeling hopeful in their own struggle.
Do you have a success story about your love one suffering from mental illness?