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in Mental Health Crisis Day


National Helping Families

We are not a Washington association. We are individual families who have
loved ones with serious mental illness, and we live with these issues everyday.

Helping
Families in
Mental Health Crisis

It’s time to change the status quo!

FIND OUT HOW

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Helping
Families in
Mental Health Crisis

It’s time to change the status quo!

FIND OUT HOW

Coping with a Child's
Mental Illness

Anne and Marcus Smith know they would use their real names for this article if their 14-year-old son, William, were suffering from a disease like diabetes or cancer. Their neighbors would likely deliver meals every time William was hospitalized and post affectionate messages on Facebook. But William has bipolar disorder, a chronic condition that causes extreme and sometimes disabling mood swings. And while Anne and Marcus could certainly use their community’s support, they also have to guard their son’s privacy to protect him from the harsh judgments people often make about kids with mental illness. So they share on a need-to-know basis, and the neighbors pretend not to notice when an ambulance pulls up to the house….   READ MORE

Families in Pain - Caring for a Loved One
with Serious Mental Illness


The Caregiver Perspective: Caregivers of Individuals with Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia and Schizoaffective Disorder

In the past 50 years, a shift toward community care and the deinstitutionalization of psychiatric patients has resulted in transferring of responsibility and day-to-day care to family members. In part, this shifting of responsibility has been caused by a deficit in community support services. READ MORE

Family Mental Illness Stressful for Caregivers

Taking care of a loved one with a mental illness can lead to mental problems in the primary caregiver.

A new Canadian study has found family caregivers can experience high levels of stress, self-blame, substance abuse and depressive symptoms. Researchers suggest that caregivers refocus their priorities and lighten their load.

“Being the principal caregiver to a mentally ill family member is a stressor that often creates high levels of burden and contributes to depressive symptoms,” said lead author Dr. Carsten Wrosch, a psychology professor at Concordia University.

“Caring for a relative with a mental illness can be strenuous — such caregivers can even be more burdened than caregivers of dementia patients,” Wrosch said.  READ MORE

We are caregivers - A mother's story about her young adult son who lives with paranoid schizophrenia

Often there isn’t a lot said about the caregivers for someone with schizophrenia. We tend to show up in stories written by the media after a tragedy happens and then we are put under a microscope for people to determine if we have done the right thing in raising, caring for, and protecting our loved ones. Often the judgment comes down on us from those who don’t have the first clue what it’s like to be a caregiver. It’s so easy for them to say what they would have done differently if THEY were the ones deciding the fate of our loved ones with schizophrenia. It’s so easy for them yet it is one of our most difficult jobs and one that we pour our heart and soul into daily…. READ MORE

Many families often say that living a life with schizophrenia is a long journey for everyone involved. For many, the journey feels like blindly walking through a forest where many trees block the view of the road ahead. As discussed in the previous article, schizophrenia is often viewed as “a diagnosis with a poor prognosis.” Some studies show that schizophrenia can be improved with appropriate and timely treatment. Medication adherence is often the most important part of treatment. Sadly, because of the symptoms and behaviors involved, it can be very difficult for individuals to remain on their medication. For this reason, schizophrenia has a poor prognosis.…. READ MORE

Support The Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act, HR2646.

Find out what else you can do on our Take Action page

Support The Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act, HR2646.

Find out what else you can do on our Take Action page

Schizophrenia: Symptoms, Behaviors, and Subcategories (audio clips)

TITUSVILLE, N.J., November 13, 2015 – In recognition of National Family Caregivers Month, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced results of “A Large-Scale Survey of Caregivers of Persons with Schizophrenia and/or Schizoaffective Disorder Designed to Identify Unmet Needs” that showed caregiving is a significant burden and caregivers lack sufficient support and assistance. The study was recently presented at the Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy’s NEXUS 2015 Congress. READ MORE

Largest Schizophrenia and Schizoaffective Disorder Caregiver Survey Reveals Overwhelming Burden and Inadequate Assistance