Author: Lisa Graas
•4/27/2004 08:50:00 AM
Psychiatry at a Crossroads
Author: Lisa Graas
•4/25/2004 11:01:00 PM
It Runs In The Family

Gee, it's been so long since I've written, you all probably think I've dropped off the face of the earth! I'm sorry to be away so long. You know me. I take long breaks.

A lot has happened since I last wrote. My brother has developed some wildly schizophrenic symptoms. These came out of the blue. He's not had any such symptoms before. Our family is in turmoil about this.........but really not so surprised since so many in our family have mental illness. It's a blow but not a shock. I would appreciate your prayers for Mike and for my mother Betty. She is so worried, especially since he has been gone for a week and we don't know where he is. He is 47 years old.

Just a couple of weeks ago, my nephew was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder. Schizoaffective disorder lies in between Bipolar Disorder and Schizophrenia on the diagnostic spectrum. Suddenly, then, we are dealing with not one family member with mental illness........and not two, but now three in the immediate family. I consider my nephew to be immediate family. There are others in the family with mental illness. My cousin was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. Another cousin's son has Bipolar Disorder. My mother's cousin has Bipolar Disorder. We think that others in the family have had it. They have passed on now. They were never diagnosed.

One of the first questions asked in a mental health exam is "Do any family members have this illness?" When I list how many in my family are affected, it seems most academic that I have it, too. If mental illness runs in your family, I would especially appreciate your comments.

Ta-Ta for now! I promise to try to write again real soon.

Love from Lisa