Posts in Stories of Hope

Saving Lives, Changing Communities

August 5th, 2013 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “Saving Lives, Changing Communities”

Link To Original Article: National Alliance on Mental Illness


By Laura Usher, NAMI CIT Program Manager In 1986, when Ann Dino’s injured son Bubba was transported to the hospital in a police car because he had a mental illness and the ambulance wouldn’t take him, she knew things had to change. Dino, then the president of NAMI Memphis, turned to her good friend and fellow NAMI Memphis member at the time, Helen Adamo. Adamo recalls meeting with the mayor and asking him, “How would you like to read the headline tomorrow, ‘Mentally Ill Man Bleeds Out in the Back of a Squad Car’?” Dino and Adamo were no strangers to calling the police for help when their sons, both living with serious mental illness, were in crisis. Adamo says, “The first time I called the police for my son, they came in with their hands on their guns and their billy clubs and they didn’t know what to do.” Adamo wrote a proposal for the mayor and city council, asking them to support training for police officers in responding to people with mental illness. new balance femme pas cher Her proposal was based on a team created by the Los Angeles police and focused on the need to reduce injuries of police officers in responding to mental health crisis calls. newbalance 2018 pas cher While some officials were sympathetic, it was a slow going; they pushed the issue for about a year and a half. Then, in September 1987, Joseph Robinson was shot and killed by Memphis police. Robinson’s mother had called the police because he was hurting himself in the midst of a mental health crisis. Robinson was African American and outrage over the shooting rocked the community. While community members were calling for the police chief’s resignation, Dino and Adamo looked for a different solution. They approached the mayor with the plan for police mental health training. While speaking at a city council meeting, Dino recalls the crowd pressing against her back. new balance pas cher “The police had to escort us out.” After Robinson’s shooting, things moved quickly. The police chief appointed then-Lt. Walter Crews to head a community taskforce to come up with a response. new balance Homme pas cher The taskforce included Dino and Adamo from NAMI Memphis, the heads of the local mental health institutes and the Med, the Regional Medical Center at Memphis. In addition, private mental health providers clamored to be involved in the program. Dino credits Crews’ diplomacy with getting all the players working together. The taskforce called the new program a crisis intervention team (CIT) and it was built around the partnerships developed through the taskforce. Police training was vital to program’s success, but what made it unique were the personal interactions between individuals with mental illness, their families, mental health professionals and police. Dino says those interactions helped change the way the whole crisis response system worked. “When the officers went to the consumer drop in center and saw consumers who were not in a crisis, saw that they were a real person, that was a tremendous help. Then the professionals rode in the car with officers on involuntary commitment calls…It was an education for everybody. newbalance 2018 This is what made it work, for everyone to see everything, experience the whole thing.” After the first CIT training in 1988, Crews handed the reins of the program to Lt. Sam Cochran. Dino recalls being nervous that the program would be handed off to a new person but, she says, “Sam took it into his heart and soul.” Twenty-five years later, the Memphis CIT program has had remarkable success – cutting injuries to police officers, developing a crisis assessment system for people with mental illness, reducing arrests and improving community relations. newbalance pas cher Its success has inspired 2,800 communities in 45 states across the country to start CIT programs. Adamo says that it makes all the difference in the world. New Balance Baskets Years ago, her family moved to a small town outside of Memphis, and when she had to call police recently, “I asked the officer at the police department, have you had crisis intervention training and he had… It was all the difference in the world.

Woman Sitting on Steps

10 Fundamental Elements of Recovery

August 4th, 2013 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “10 Fundamental Elements of Recovery”

Link To Original Article: Choices in Recovery

Following is a summary of The National Consensus Statement on Mental Health and Recovery created by an expert panel convened by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. The panel worked to define the key elements of recovery in mental health. newbalance pas cher They are: 1. Self-direction: Essentially, a person with a mental health condition leads the process of recovery by defining life goals and then designing a unique path toward those goals. 2. Individualized and person-centered: The pathway to mental health recovery is based on a person’s unique strengths, needs, preferences, experience, and cultural background. 3. Empowerment: People with a mental health condition have the authority to choose from a range of options and to participate in all decisions that will affect their lives. They also have the ability to join with others to speak as advocates for their needs, wants, and desires. solde newbalance map Through empowerment, they control their own destiny. 4. Holistic: Mental health recovery comprises mind, body, spirit, and community. It encompasses all aspects of a person’s life such as employment, education, mental health, addiction treatment, spirituality, creativity, social network, and family support. 5. Nonlinear: Mental health recovery is an organic process that is based on growth, occasional setbacks, and learning from experience. The initial stage of recovery is awareness that positive change is possible, and from there, being able to take an active role in the recovery journey. 6. Strengths-based: The mental health recovery journey builds on a person’s strengths and talents, and moves forward through interactions with others in supportive, trust-based relationships. 7. newbalance 2018 Peer support: Mutual support plays a key role in recovery. People with mental health conditions can encourage each other, share experiences, and provide each other with a sense of belonging and community. 8. Respect: Acceptance and appreciation of people living with mental health conditions — including protecting their personal rights and eliminating discrimination and stigma. Self-acceptance and self-confidence also are vital. chaussures new balance 9. Responsibility: Individuals have a personal responsibility for self-care, and their recovery journey. Working toward goals can require great courage. Identifying coping strategies and healing processes can promote wellness. 10. vente de newbalance Hope: Recovery is a message of hope and understanding that people do overcome the barriers and obstacles that confront them. soldes newbalance chaussures Peers, friends, and family can help to foster that hope. Hope is what can get the recovery process started.

Christian Mental Health Counseling Help Article

August 1st, 2013 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “Christian Mental Health Counseling Help Article”

Link To Original Article: Renewal Christian Treatment & Recocery


This article originally appeared in the December 2003 issue of Mentor Magazine, a magazine for ministers. Reprinted by permission of Faith Christian Fellowship International.

It’s a mistake to tell God how to be God. We ask for help and He decides how to provide it.

When people go through life crises, they often turn to their pastors for help. Sometimes they need lay or pastoral counseling and the loving support of the church family. Other times their complex problems may go beyond the pastor’s expertise or availability; yet some pastors are concerned about referring people to mental health professionals. What if the doctor prescribes a pill for the symptoms and ignores the root cause of the problem? What if the counselor undermines their faith? What about healing through faith and scripture? How do you draw the line between mental health problems and issues that are rooted in past hurts or abuse? In this interview, Dr. Stephen Harnish, Dr. Faith Sellen, and Chaplain Betty-Jo Anderson give their perspectives concerning the value and efficacy of Christian counseling, and it’s role in helping people receive God’s plan for recovery and growth. Stephen Harnish, M.D. is a board certified psychiatrist and Associate Medical Director at Brookhaven Hospital. He is a graduate of the University of New Mexico Medical School and received specialized training at Dartmouth Medical School. A graduate of Louisiana State University, Faith Sellen, Ph.D. is a Clinical Psychologist and Therapist for the Renewal Chemical Dependency Program at Brookhaven Hospital. Chaplain at Brookhaven Hospital, Reverend Betty-Jo Anderson graduated from North Central University in Minneapolis, and is pursuing a masters of divinity and masters of Christian counseling at Oral Roberts University. Dr. Harnish, Dr. Sellen, and Chaplain Anderson work together at the Renewal Program of Brookhaven Hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The Renewal Program provides a Christian approach to the treatment of behavioral health, chemical dependence, andeating disorders.

How is Christian counseling different from secular counseling?

Dr. Harnish: We can treat the whole person, body, mind and spirit. We can enlist God’s direction and assistance from the start. I spoke to a patient recently who was fired from her psychiatrist because she (the patient) kept talking about her faith. newbalance 2018 pas cher The psychiatrist told her not to come back. It makes such a difference when the patient knows that we are believers. We can maximize their faith instead of minimizing it. Our trust in God is the foundation for health and healing. Dr. Sellen: When I’m counseling a Christian, there is a shared experience and belief system. There is freedom to utilize scripture and prayer. When people are psychotic or recovering from addiction, they are down in the pits. They feel worthless and their minds may not be clear. So I keep it very simple. I tell them, God loves you unconditionally. As His creation, you are beautiful and wonderful. He died for you and is willing to forgive you. You need to forgive yourself and move on to become the person He created you to be. Our shared belief creates a strong connection. Chaplain Anderson: Effective Christian counselors respect and understand a person’s belief system. They encourage spiritual growth rather than negate it. They look for spiritual keys to unlock the individual’s understanding if he or she is stuck. acheter newbalance They offer prayer, which can allow the person to have a therapeutic release of emotions beyond what is possible through conversation alone. They respect the person’s innate gifts, realizing that we are all fellow travelers on this journey of growth toward God. In this way, they become an extension of the work of the Holy Spirit, the Comforter in tangible form.

Why do people need counseling or mental healthcare? Shouldn’t we be able to address all our needs through prayer and scripture alone?

Dr. Sellen: God has given us many gifts to help us live abundant lives. They include prayer and scripture as well as wisdom, medicine, learning, and teachers. God’s grace is bigger than our problems. We benefit by opening ourselves to all his gifts. For example, if your child was sick or dying, you would pray and use scripture—and you would also use medicine Dr. Harnish: As members of the body of Christ, we have a duty to assist each other. God works through us to help each other. It’s like your own body. If your left arm itches, you send your right hand over to scratch it. As a member of the body of Christ, if you are the left arm, you could seek help directly from the right hand. You could also ask the head (Christ), Jesus, please stop this itch, and He could send the right hand over. God could send the right hand to scratch it (counseling), or ointment to ease the itch (medicine). It is up to us to make ourselves available to God. It is an honor to be asked by God and a privilege to serve other members of the Body. Chaplain Anderson: Remember Maslow’s hierarchy of need teaches that people must meet their physical need for food, shelter, safety and health, before they can focus on social and spiritual needs. Jesus said, For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in. …Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me, Matthew 25:35 & 40 (NIV). Paul said, Faith, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead, James 2:17 (NIV). When people come to us with physical and emotional needs, we must meet those before they are open to address spiritual needs. Prayer and scripture are vital, but God also gives us relationships. We need to be Jesus’ love extended.

Are psychotherapy and psychotropic medications secular, humanistic answers to spiritual problems?

Dr. Harnish: The devil uses every weapon in his arsenal to disrupt God’s plan for our lives. We should use every weapon available to come against him. I liken it to the armed forces going to fight a war: the Army, the Navy and the Air Force. I see the Army as medication. It is in the trenches to do physical battle. As a psychiatrist, I am a general in the Army. I direct the forces and arm the nerve endings with Zoloft ™, or Paxil ™ or Seroquil ™—whatever is the best weapon to assist the physical body to return to normal. The Navy is counseling. It is more fluid and performs a different, but equally necessary function. new balance 2018 The Air Force is prayer and scripture. I call it the Heir Force, because we are heirs of salvation. When we pray and speak the Word of God, we are performing air strikes on the devil. You wouldn’t go to war with only one branch of the service. All three are essential. Why limit God by using only one weapon for recovery, when more are available? Chaplain Anderson: This is a difficult situation for many born again believers. We believe God for healing, yet we trust a doctor’s diagnosis and take medication. If you have angina, you take nitroglycerin. soldes newbalance Taking medication for mental illness is just like taking medicine for physical illness. Using medication and therapy does not negate God’s healing power, nor is it a sign of spiritual failure. Dr. Sellen: In simple terms, psychotherapy is new learning. It is simply a way for people to gain insight and learn new ways of thinking and acting that lead to health and wholeness. Sometimes the new learning occurs in a relationship with another person, like a counselor. The new learning may be looking at how they got stuck in the past, thinking differently in order to have the option to produce different behaviors. New learning encounters can help people become whole by providing new choices for how to react to things, think about things and do things. It is important to understand that mental illness is real illness. It occurs when the brain chemistry does not function correctly. The right medication can help the brain function correctly, like insulin for a diabetic. I believe medication is another gift God has given.

What are the dangers if we avoid referring people to mental healthcare?

Dr. Harnish: The bottom line is death through suicide. You must always keep an eye ondepression. As a pastor, if you are lovingly counseling someone through the Word, it is critical that you not miss or ignore the signs of deepening depression and desperation. Suicidal thoughts are symptoms of major depression the same way that chest pains are symptoms of heart disease. They are symptoms, not moral failure. Depression is a medical condition with symptoms in the mind. Suicidal thoughts signal danger just like chest pains signal a possible heart attack. Rather than focus on guilt and judgment, we must take the message the mind is sending, which is, I need safety and treatment now. The other danger of missing an opportunity to refer someone for mental health treatment is that they may suffer much longer than necessary. As a physician, I always want to avoid mortality and minimize morbidity (suffering). acheter newbalance en ligne If a person is suffering with a mental illness, addiction or eating disorder, they may or may not get better without treatment. Even if they do get better on their own, it could take many months or even years. That is so unnecessary, when with medication and counseling, they could get back to functioning well within one or two months. Dr. Sellen: It is so important to know when to refer someone for professional help. Depending on the problem, if people with mental illness do not get the help they need, they can make devastating choices and their lives can be turned upside down. They can ruin marriages and careers, get into financial and legal trouble, be a danger to themselves and others, or commit suicide. Chaplain Anderson: Why would we avoid referring someone who needs help, if it is out of our area of expertise? There is no shame in that. We cannot be all parts of the Body of Christ. The foot cannot be the hand. We need each other. Chaussures New Balance When we put our egos before the health of someone else, it becomes about us instead of them. Then we do more harm than good. I love the words of Rev. Aimee Cortese, an Assemblies of God minister in the Bronx. She said, We are not the Savior, we are not the Healer, and we are not the Judge, but we are vessels for the Holy Spirit to others. As a vessel, if I don’t know how to help, I can refer to a believer. Jesus said, Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free, John 8:32 (NIV).

What are the benefits of incorporating spirituality into mental healthcare?

Dr. Sellen: That’s where the power is. Scripture says that where two or more are gathered, God is present. If we are talking about health and wholeness in mind, body and spirit, then we are leaving something out if we do not address spirituality. There is great power in tapping into someone’s faith to deal with issues. Dr. Harnish: In my personal daily prayer I ask God for His wisdom. I ask patients to pray over their medications like they do over their food, to pray that the medications will work the way they are supposed to and to minimize side effects. Our professional staff prays before our treatment team meetings. We ask God to bless our patients’ recovery and help the patient and us go beyond what can be done in the natural. He answers those prayers and we give Him the glory. We do not take the credit ourselves—M.D. does not stand for Medical Deity. Chaplain Anderson: God is about truth and setting His people free from bondage. As we allow God to work and minister through us to others who are not living the abundant life God desires, we fulfill Isaiah 35:3-4 which says, Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way, say to those with fearful hearts, be strong, do not fear; your God will come…. He will come to save you (NIV). The benefit of incorporating our Christianity into counseling is the person can be made whole. Brookhaven Hospital provides Christian-oriented programs for people dealing with mental health problems, chemical dependence and eating disorders. solde newbalance map For more information, please contact us at 1(888) 298-HOPE. Brookhaven is accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO), is Medicare approved and is licensed by the state of Oklahoma.

How Family and Friends Can Aid Mental Health Recovery

August 9th, 2012 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “How Family and Friends Can Aid Mental Health Recovery”

Link To Original Article: PsychCentral.com


By Natalie Jeanne Champagne Recovering from mental illness is terrifying and exhausting, both for the person diagnosed and those who stand beside them throughout the recovery process. Sometimes, particularly when the diagnosis is new, the person suffering feels as if they will not ever become well again. Family and friends might be unsure if recovery is possible. They question how they can help. Mental illness creates a feeling of helplessness for everyone involved. newbalance 2018 pas cher My and my family’s experience with chronic mental illness has allowed me to understand how important it is to have a support group. It can define the journey taken to recover from mental illness. My diagnosis is rare. I was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder when I was 12. While my siblings were attending school and playing soccer on weekends, I was confined to a children’s psychiatric hospital. I remember wondering what was wrong with me. I remember my parents, wide-eyed, watching as my moods shifted by the hour, even the minute. We were all terrified. Mental illness is frightening at its core. Unsure what to do, my parents brought me to doctors, psychiatrists, therapists and even nutritionists. The various doctors told them I hadAttention Deficit Disorder; the psychiatrists told my parents they were parenting me badly. They were certain that explained my erratic behavior. The therapist asked me to draw pictures that they thought would explain my moods. I refused to use any crayon that was not black, threw the toys that were carefully placed around the brightly lit room, and tore up the paper. I was unable to control myself. She dismissed me as being ‘overemotional’ and ‘narcissistic’ at the ripe age of 11. soldes newbalance The nutritionist told me I was allergic to dairy products. My family, in a show of support, stopped eating anything containing dairy. Fourteen years ago, professionals simply could not believe a child could have a serious mental illness−despite our family tree being defined by mental illness and suicide. The years before my diagnosis were painful and affected our family dynamic immensely. My two siblings watched their older sister fall apart; they viewed their parents trying to catch me as I fell into blackness. My illness was quickly making my family ill. It is impossible to capture my experience with mental illness in a few words, but I can tell you that without the support of my family, friends and a support team, I would not be writing these words. NEW BALANCE en France Twenty-six years old now, I feel I have some experience under my belt (so to speak) and would like to share different ways in which people can support a loved one struggling with mental illness. Often, a newly diagnosed person is confused and angry. They may believe they do not need help. They might push away family and friends. As a person living with a chronic mental illness, I can tell you that isolation often results from fear. Mental illness carriesstigma and it is frightening. For example: I fall into a severe and crippling depression each winter. Each time it occurs I am, somehow, surprised. I quickly forget that my life is usually full of color and that waking up each morning often makes me smile. When I become ill I am certain I will never be well again. If a family member or friend is unstable, the most important thing you can do is remind them that they will become well again. Without my family and friends to help me through each winter, to assure me that my life will become mine again, once spring arrives, I would certainly struggle more. It is important to have a plan of action. Effective communication will be crucial if the person with mental illness shows signs of a relapse. A plan of action for such an event creates a feeling of security both for the person struggling and for those who love them. An example: My family and I sat down with my psychiatrist−once it was clear my episodes were seasonal−and made a plan, in writing, that stated the steps that would be taken if I became ill. It was a difficult thing to do at the time. soldes newbalance Seeing my diagnosis on paper made it real. But that paper provides a feeling of security for all of us. The plan can include medication alterations, community outreach, and simple things like charting your mood and recognizing patterns. I believe this can be one of the most useful tools when working to help someone recover from a mental illness. It certainly is not a document that is placed on my fridge—it’s hidden away somewhere—but it has been instrumental in my recovery. The health of those who support the mentally ill person often gets ignored. When I first became ill, my entire family suffered. My parents, while working full-time and taking care of my two siblings, spent years focused on my illness and recovery. In the process, they became unwell themselves. My mother slipped into a depression and my father worked to keep our family functioning. It was not easy. new balance sitemap Often, when a person must spend so much time focusing on someone they love, they forget to take care of themselves. It is impossible to help someone else if you become sick yourself. Ask yourself: “Do I need to step back?” Sometimes you do. My family has learned both to support me and support each other. It is in this way that we have been able to embrace recovery together.

Lives Restored: Profiles of Mental Illness

August 25th, 2011 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “Lives Restored: Profiles of Mental Illness”

Link To Original Article: The New York Times, Interactive Feature


A series profiling people who are functioning normally despite severe mental illness and have chosen to speak out about their struggles.

Finding Purpose After Living With Delusion

By BENEDICT CAREY, November 25, NEW BALANCE en France 2011 In the delusional world that he inhabited for years as a younger man, Milt Greek was grandiose, messianic. newbalance 2018 He was sure that he was in contact with God and Jesus, and that he had a mission: to save the world from itself. new balance sitemap After receiving treatment for his schizophrenia, Mr. Chaussures Homme New Balance Greek saw those thoughts as a product of psychosis – but as relevant as ever, newbalance chaussures in maintaining his recovery. He takes medication and occasionally visits a therapist, new balance pas cher but to stay well he needs to be working to better the world, chaussures new balance or at least his own community.

Expert on Mental Illness Reveals Her Own Fight

August 23rd, 2011 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “Expert on Mental Illness Reveals Her Own Fight”

Link To Original Article: The New York Times

View The Video Feature


By BENEDICT CAREY Published: June 23, 2011

HARTFORD — Are you one of us?

The patient wanted to know, and her therapist — Marsha M. Linehan of theUniversity of Washington, creator of a treatment used worldwide for severely suicidal people — had a ready answer. It was the one she always used to cut the question short, whether a patient asked it hopefully, accusingly or knowingly, having glimpsed the macramé of faded burns, cuts andwelts on Dr. Linehan’s arms:

“You mean, have I suffered?”

“No, Marsha,” the patient replied, in an encounter last spring. soldes newbalance “I mean one of us. Like us. Because if you were, it would give all of us so much hope.”

“That did it,” said Dr. Linehan, 68, who told her story in public for the first time last week before an audience of friends, family and doctors at the Institute of Living, the Hartford clinic where she was first treated for extreme social withdrawal at age 17. newbalance 2018 “So many people have begged me to come forward, and I just thought — well, I have to do this. soldes new balance chaussures I owe it to them. I cannot die a coward.”

No one knows how many people with severe mental illness live what appear to be normal, successful lives, because such people are not in the habit of announcing themselves. They are too busy juggling responsibilities, paying the bills, studying, raising families — all while weathering gusts of dark emotions or delusions that would quickly overwhelm almost anyone else.

Now, an increasing number of them are risking exposure of their secret, saying that the time is right. The nation’s mental health system is a shambles, they say, criminalizing many patients and warehousing some of the most severe in nursing and group homes where they receive care from workers with minimal qualifications.

Moreover, the enduring stigma of mental illness teaches people with such a diagnosis to think of themselves as victims, snuffing out the one thing that can motivate them to find treatment: hope.

“There’s a tremendous need to implode the myths of mental illness, to put a face on it, to show people that a diagnosis does not have to lead to a painful and oblique life,” said Elyn R. Saks, a professor at the University of Southern California School of Law who chronicles her own struggles with schizophrenia in “The Center Cannot Hold: My Journey Through Madness.” “We who struggle with these disorders can lead full, happy, productive lives, if we have the right resources.”

These include medication (usually), therapy (often), a measure of good luck (always) — and, most of all, the inner strength to manage one’s demons, if not banish them. solde newbalance map That strength can come from any number of places, these former patients say: love, forgiveness, faith in God, a lifelong friendship.

But Dr. Linehan’s case shows there is no recipe. She was driven by a mission to rescue people who are chronically suicidal, often as a result of borderline personality disorder, an enigmatic condition characterized in part by self-destructive urges.

“I honestly didn’t realize at the time that I was dealing with myself,” she said. “But I suppose it’s true that I developed a therapy that provides the things I needed for so many years and never got.”

‘I Was in Hell’

She learned the central tragedy of severe mental illness the hard way, banging her head against the wall of a locked room.

Marsha Linehan arrived at the Institute of Living on March 9, 1961, at age 17, and quickly became the sole occupant of the seclusion room on the unit known as Thompson Two, for the most severely ill patients. New Balance Homme The staff saw no alternative: The girl attacked herself habitually, burning her wrists with cigarettes, slashing her arms, her legs, her midsection, using any sharp object she could get her hands on.

The seclusion room, a small cell with a bed, a chair and a tiny, barred window, had no such weapon. Yet her urge to die only deepened. acheter newbalance So she did the only thing that made any sense to her at the time: banged her head against the wall and, later, the floor. Hard.

“My whole experience of these episodes was that someone else was doing it; it was like ‘I know this is coming, I’m out of control, somebody help me; where are you, God?’ ” she said. “I felt totally empty, like the Tin Man; I had no way to communicate what was going on, no way to understand it.”

Her childhood, in Tulsa, Okla., provided few clues. An excellent student from early on, a natural on the piano, she was the third of six children of an oilman and his wife, an outgoing woman who juggled child care with the Junior League and Tulsa social events.

People who knew the Linehans at that time remember that their precocious third child was often in trouble at home, and Dr. Linehan recalls feeling deeply inadequate compared with her attractive and accomplished siblings. But whatever currents of distress ran under the surface, no one took much notice until she was bedridden with headaches in her senior year of high school.

Her younger sister, Aline Haynes, said: “This was Tulsa in the 1960s, and I don’t think my parents had any idea what to do with Marsha. No one really knew what mental illness was.”

Soon, a local psychiatrist recommended a stay at the Institute of Living, to get to the bottom of the problem. NEW BALANCE en France There, doctors gave her a diagnosis of schizophrenia; dosed her with Thorazine, Librium and other powerful drugs, as well as hours of Freudian analysis; and strapped her down for electroshock treatments, 14 shocks the first time through and 16 the second, according to her medical records.

A High-Profile Executive Job as Defense Against Mental Ills

August 22nd, 2011 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “A High-Profile Executive Job as Defense Against Mental Ills”

Link To Original Article: The New York Times


By BENEDICT CAREY Published: October 22, 2011

PASADENA, Calif. — The feeling of danger was so close and overwhelming that there was no time to find its source, no choice but to get out of the apartment, fast.

Keris Myrick headed for her car, checked the time — just past midnight, last March — and texted her therapist.

“You’re going to the Langham? The hotel?” the doctor responded. “No — you need to be in the hospital. I need you consulting with a doctor.”

“What do you think I’m doing right now?”

“Oh. Right,” he said. acheter newbalance “Well, O.K., then we need to check in regularly.”

“And that’s what we did,” said Ms. Myrick, 50, the chief executive of a nonprofit organization, who has a diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder, a close cousin of schizophrenia, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. chaussures new balance “I needed to hide out, to be away for a while. I wanted to pamper myself — room service, great food, fluffy pillows, all that — and I was lucky to have a therapist who understood what was going on and went with it.”

Researchers have conducted more than 100,000 studies on schizophrenia since its symptoms were first characterized. They have tested patients’ blood. They have analyzed their genes. They have measured perceptual skills, I.Q. new balance pas cher and memory, and have tried perhaps thousands of drug treatments.

Now, a group of people with the diagnosis is showing researchers a previously hidden dimension of the story: how the disorder can be managed while people build full, successful lives. The continuing study — a joint project of the University of California, Los Angeles; the University of Southern California; and the Department of Veterans Affairs — follows a group of 20 people with the diagnosis, including two doctors, a lawyer and a chief executive, Ms. Myrick.

The study has already forced its authors to discard some of their assumptions about living with schizophrenia. “It’s just embarrassing,” said Dr. Stephen R. Marder, director of the psychosis section at U.C.L.A.’s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, a psychiatrist with the V.A. Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System and one of the authors of the study. “For years, we as psychiatrists have been telling people with a diagnosis what to expect; we’ve been telling them who they are, how to change their lives — and it was bad information” for many people.

No more so, perhaps, than for Ms. Myrick, who after years of devastating mental trials learned that she needed a high-profile position, not a low-key one, to face down her spells of paranoia and despair. Her treatment regimen, like most others’ in the study, is a combination of medication as needed and personal supports, including an intuitive pet dog, the occasional weekend stay at a luxury hotel — and, not least, a strong alliance with a local psychiatrist.

“I feel my brain is damaged; I don’t know any other way to say it,” Ms. solde newbalance map Myrick said. “I don’t know if it’s from the illness, the medications, all those side effects or what. I only know that I do need certain things in my life, and for a long time — well, I had to get to know myself first.”

‘The Jagged Piece’

Keris Jän Myrick was an Army brat. She grew up around the world and nowhere in particular, moving from Bremerhaven, West Germany, to Los Angeles to Fort Leavenworth, Kan., to Englewood, N.J., to Seoul, South Korea, and back stateside again, as her father advanced in the ranks. The changing locations and temporary friends made the family close, and Col. Howard A. new balance sitemap Myrick and his wife, Roberta, were strong advocates for their daughter and her older brother, Kyl, wherever they landed.

“Let’s just say that their mother and I had to continually go to school and deal with teachers who had presumptions about their ability based on cultural factors,” said Howard Myrick, now a Temple University professor of communications who lives in Philadelphia. Roberta Myrick died in 2009.

Brother and sister thrived, in academics, in music, he in sports, but she was the more sensitive soul and felt increasingly isolated socially, and self-critical. The only black girl among her playmates in West Germany and South Korea, she also became conscious of race early on. “It’s important to know that everyone around me was white; I was the epitome of a minority,” she wrote about one period living overseas.

Yet if she looked different from her classmates abroad, she spoke and acted very differently from the African-Americans in Englewood. She was taunted, ostracized; the black world seemed no more ready to offer her a place than the white one.

After Drugs and Dark Times, Helping Others to Stand Back Up

August 19th, 2011 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “After Drugs and Dark Times, Helping Others to Stand Back Up”

Link To Original Article: The New York Times


By BENEDICT CAREY Published: December 19, 2011

SMYRNA, Del. — The taste of cocaine and the slow-motion sensation of breaking the law were all too familiar, but the thrill was long gone.

Antonio Lambert was not a young hoodlum anymore but a family man with a career, and here he was last fall, high as any street user, sneaking into his workplace at 9 o’clock at night, looking for — what, exactly? He didn’t really know.

He left the building with a few cellphones (which he threw away) and a feeling that he was slipping, falling back down into a hole. He walked in the darkness, walked with no place to go, and then he began to do what he has taught others in similar circumstances to do: turn, face the problem, and stand back up.

“I started talking to myself, out loud; that’s one of my coping strategies, and one reason I relapsed is I had forgotten to use those,” said Mr. new balance pas cher Lambert, 41, a mental health educator who has a combined diagnosis — mood disorder with drug addiction — that is among the scariest in psychiatry.

He texted a friend, someone who knew his history and could help talk him back down. And he checked himself into a hospital. “I know when it’s time to reach out for help.”

The mental health care system has long made use of former patients as counselors and the practice has been controversial, in part because doctors and caseworkers have questioned their effectiveness. But recent research suggests that peer support can reduce costs, and in 2007, federal health officials ruled that states could bill for the services under Medicaid — if the state had a system in place to train and certify peer providers.

In the years since, “peer support has just exploded; I have been in this field for 25 years, and I have never seen anything happen so quickly,” said Larry Davidson, a mental health researcher at Yale. “Peers are living, breathing proof that recovery is possible, that it is real.”

Exhibit A is Mr. acheter newbalance Lambert, a self-taught ex-convict who is becoming a prominent peer trainer, giving classes in Delaware and across the country. He is one of a small number of people who have chosen to describe publicly how difficult it is to manage such a severe dual diagnosis, including the sudden setbacks that often come with it.

“He is an extreme example of how much difference passion and commitment can make, given where he’s come from,” said Steve Harrington, the chief executive of the National Association of Peer Specialists, a group devoted to promoting peer support in mental health care.

Mr. Lambert, who has climbed out of a deep hole with the help of religious faith, medication and his own forms of self-expression, puts it this way: “There are a lot of people dealing with mental illness, drugs, abandonment, abuse, and they don’t think there’s a way out. I didn’t. new balance sitemap I didn’t.”

Bean Bean in Spider City

His grandmother was the first person to call him Bean Bean, and the boy was so skinny that he couldn’t shake it.

He couldn’t avoid the older toughs in the Brighton section of Portsmouth, Va., either, and he spent some of his school-age years taking beatings. That was Brighton back in the day, and at least those fights taught survival skills. acheter newbalance Not everything did: He remembers being sexually abused at age 6, by an older boy in the neighborhood — brutally.

He had no one to tell, even if he had known what to say. New Balance Baskets Femme His mother and father were split, living blocks apart, each a fixture in the neighborhood’s social swirl of house parties, moonshine “shot shops,” card games and other attractions. His mother, called Chucky, was often out, sometimes leaving the boy at a friend’s house for “a few hours” that turned into an entire weekend. chaussures new balance For much of that time, he waited on the porch.

He idolized his father, a truck driver and warehouse worker who lived nearby but spent his free time out, too, drinking and playing cards.

“During that time I was an alcoholic, but I would go out and try to find him when I heard he was out,” said his father, Edward Lambert, in a recent interview at his house in Brighton.

Learning to Cope With a Mind’s Taunting Voices

August 6th, 2011 Posted by Stories of Hope 0 thoughts on “Learning to Cope With a Mind’s Taunting Voices”

Link To Original Article: The New York Times


By BENEDICT CAREY Published: August 6, 2011 LEE’S SUMMIT, Mo. — The job was gone, the gun was loaded, and a voice was saying, “You’re a waste, give up now, do it now.” It was a command, not a suggestion, and what mattered at that moment — a winter evening in 2000 — was not where the voice was coming from, but how assured it was, how persuasive. Losing his first decent job ever seemed like too much for Joe Holt to live with. It was time. “All I remember then is a knock on the bedroom door and my wife, Patsy, she sits down on the bed and hugs me, and I’m holding the gun in my left hand, down here, out of sight,” said Mr. Holt, 50, a computer consultant and entrepreneur who has a diagnosis of schizophrenia. “She says, ‘Joe, I know you feel like quitting, but what if tomorrow is the day you get what you want?’ And walks out. I sat there staring at that gun for an hour at least, and finally decided — never again. It can never be an option. Patsy deserves for me to be trying.” In recent years, researchers have begun talking aboutmental health care in the same way addiction specialists speak of recovery — the lifelong journey of self-treatment and discipline that guides substance abuse programs. The idea remains controversial: managing a severe mental illness is more complicated than simply avoiding certain behaviors. new balance Homme pas cher The journey has more mazes, fewer road signs. Yet people like Joe Holt are traveling it and succeeding. acheter newbalance en ligne Most rely on some medical help, but each has had to build core skills from the ground up, through trial and repeated error. Now more and more of them are risking exposure to tell their stories publicly. “If you’re going to focus on recovery, you might want to ask those who’ve actually recovered what it is they’re doing,” said Frederick J. Frese III, an associate professor ofpsychiatry at the Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine who has written about his own struggles with schizophrenia. “Certainly, traditional medicine has not worked very well for many of us,” Dr. Frese went on. “That’s why we’ve had to learn so many survival tricks on our own.” First among Mr. Holt’s many resources is his wife, who has been an effective at-home therapist — in part, paradoxically, because she does not consider mental illness an adequate excuse to shirk responsibilities. “When I think of all that happened, I just can’t believe she’s still with me,” said Mr. Holt, who lives near Kansas City, Mo. soldes newbalance chaussures “You have to understand, for so many years I was hearing her say terrible, nasty things that she wasn’t saying.” ‘I Was So Broken’ Lonnie Joseph Holt grew up an orphan. acheter newbalance After his parents split up, his grandmother took in Joe and three older siblings but was soon overwhelmed when her husband died; off the children went to Childhaven, a residential facility in nearby Cullman, Ala., that was sponsored by her church. At least the children would be together. It was Feb. newbalance 2018 20, 1964. Joe was 3. But the staff kept the Holt children apart, records show. The siblings rarely saw one another, much less had a chance to speak. solde newbalance map The eldest, Jack, made repeated attempts to escape, and the second eldest, Susie, made at least one, according to records kept by the home and acquired by Mr. Holt. They had their reasons. “There were regular beatings, sometimes with a board, sometimes with a Ping-Pong paddle, sometimes with a razor strap,” Mr. Holt said. “You had to memorize a portion of the Bible, and if you didn’t, you’d get a beating. Once I got beaten so badly I thought I was going to pass out.” Jack, now a retired Church of Christ minister in Texas, has similar memories. In 1984, a Childhaven staff member pleaded guilty to sodomizing a minor, and another man to beating a child with a paddle. (The staff has long since turned over, and the home instituted safeguards and is now considered a leading provider, said its current executive director, James Wright.) The Holts were gone by then, Joe zigzagging between homes, living for a time in Alabama and with his father in Cleveland before joining his mother, her new husband and stepsiblings in a bungalow apartment in a complex off Highway 71 near Kansas City. It did not last. One summer day Joe’s mother and her husband packed up and moved to Texas — and told the 16-year-old boy that he was not invited. “I honestly don’t remember where Joe lived after that,” said Ted Rogers, a high school friend who is still close. soldes newbalance “He was staying on his own, just, I don’t know — around.

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  • “It has been one of my greatest rewards as NAMI Greenville, SC Program Director to see your recovery from when we first met to your award as NAMI South Carolina’s Recovery Person of the Year to your appearance on the same stage with author Pete Early. I hope your book is every bit as successful as his has been.”

    Brian Lewis
    • Fletcher Mann
    • Program Director NAMI Greenville, SC
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