Most of us know someone who has mental illness. For some of us, it is a loved one or a family member. For others, it may be a friend, classmate or co-worker. People who suffer everything from depression and bipolar disorder, to severe anxiety and even schizophrenia.
Some of us live closely with such folks, responsible for their care and lives.
All too often, there just isn’t a lot of resources or support for such caregivers. Or the information and support out there is lacking. I hope this blog by Tamara Hill, MS can change things.
This blog is primarily about the challenges facing family, friends, and caregivers who have a family member with an untreated or severe mental illness.
Here’s an example Tamara will talk more about:
In the state of PA (where I am), it is VERY difficult to get an individual with a severe, untreated mental illness involuntarily committed if that individual has not threatened harm to him/herself or another person. In the case of John Shick at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic (the man who opened fire on staff in 2012), he was turned away from the hospital a day prior because there weren’t enough beds. Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) laws may have prevented the incident.
The blog is intended to help offer social service resources and inform family, caregivers, and friends about challenges and holes in the system. Tamara says, “I will use a lot of videos, news reports, and questions to stimulate discussion.”
“I’m of the firm belief that knowledge is empowering and many families lack knowledge, which leads to a lack of empowerment,” notes Tamara.
I couldn’t agree more. Please give Tamara a warm Psych Central welcome!