You took care of my son 13 years ago when he was 17 years old and I thought I would give you an update on his recovery.
During the summer of 2004 my son ended up in the hospital three times for seven days, and each time he came home feeling a little bit worse than before. During this period I was at the most vulnerable time in my entire life and you tried your hardest to beat me to the ground, accusing me of raising my children wrong and being the cause of my son’s illness. You misdiagnosed my son at the beginning then refused, and even argued with me, to get a second opinion. You diagnosed him with bi-polar yet he was having audio hallucinations and delusions. You pumped him up with the wrong medications, adding one on top of the other. By fall he was on seven or more medications causing him to be almost catatonic, he no longer could function properly. Without knowing the background of my family or the whole story of a specific situation, your staff wrongfully reported me to social services.
Something inside me knew you were wrong, that you and your staff made deliberate mistakes, that your treatment to my son was killing him. I should have filed a complaint to the hospital’s Administration and Psychology departments, and the state of California, maybe even gotten a lawyer. However, to your benefit I had no strength during that time.
By the end of summer, I woke up from my misery and swore that my son will never end up in the mental hospital again, that he will recover and live a normal life. With the help of my son’s therapist I demanded a second opinion and would not allow you to fight me. Eventually the head doctor of Psychology re-diagnosed him with Schizophrenia, yet you took the credit for it. At the end of that summer I fired you and found a Psychiatrist that helped eliminate all the unnecessary medications you prescribed. We got him down to two which he still takes today. I am proud to say, since 2004, my son has not seen the mental ward of any hospital. Through the help of myself, his psychiatrist, his therapist, the UCLA Aftercare program, and his willingness to overcome this, he is doing exceptionally well.
You painted a dreary picture of my son’s future by instilling negative thoughts in his already worn down mind. In 2014, ten years later, he sent me this statement,
”Ten years ago I was told by the people who gave an oath to save lives that mine had ended and my new life was going to be a hollow and sad existence that would end shorter than it could have been.”
Despite his mental illness, it’s now 2017 and, without your negative influence, here is where he is at:
- He has earned an A.S. degree in Science from a community college
- He has earned three A.A. degrees from a community college
- He has earned a B.S. degree in Physics from a local university
- He has been accepted into the Physics Masters program at a local university
- He will further his education by continuing into a Ph.D. program
- His plan is to be gainfully employed at JPL or SpaceX
- He is a senior brown belt in karate and will test for his first black belt next summer
- He has attended a series of intense practices in karate
- He is confident
- He is funny
- He is honorable
- Most importantly, my son embraces his illness and accepts it as a part of his life. He has taken control of it, knowing it’s there but will not allow it to interfere with his goals in life
There you go…thank God he didn’t listen to you, he remembered your words but refused to believe them. My son’s achievements prove that someone who suffers from mental illness can live normally with proper treatment and care from others.
Just for the record, I’m a great mother and don’t you forget it! I made tremendous sacrifices to raise my son and help him through his recovery. It was his father who was not interested in being a part of the family and also not participating in my son’s recovery from mental illness.
With that said, I have become a strong advocate for removing the stigma of mental illness. I am a member and teacher of NAMI (National Alliance of Mental Illness). I teach family members, who are going through the same nightmare as I did, to cope and understand what mental illness is. I strongly suggest that, instead of discouraging your patients and their families, help them. Listen to their needs, and encourage them that there is a solution. Send family members to NAMI so they can get the knowledge and support they need so they can better help themselves and their precious loved one. Please.
´*.¸.*´♥ Peace & Light