Prejudice against people who suffer from mental illness has become an issue because of misinformation.

The psychiatric community is largely responsible for this lack of correct information.

Many of these types of afflictions are definitively diagnosed by obtaining a blood sample under totally sterile conditions and examination of the sample. A chemical imbalance may be discovered.

So as we may readily see, it doesn’t begin as mental illness at all. It begins within the one of the bodies physical systems, in this case the blood lacks a chemical or chemicals. This physical problem has a side effect of disturbing normal, ordinary processing of thoughts. The sufferer loses the ability to think clear, concise and logical thoughts.

Individuals need this bloodwork. It must be performed. Unless, and until, this blood analysis is completed, the afflicted person is going to suffer and perhaps others will suffer too.

My child was obviously one of the afflicted ones. As an infant, I saw in my child obvious symptoms of mental illness. That was many decades ago.

My child is in the bracket of senior citizen, with a birthday this year. This adult is noncompliant, and has been, since 1986. He is psychotic and I had to send him from my home. This adult child becomes sicker and sicker, more and more hostile toward me, and simply is a real danger to me. Do I love him? Absolutely! Can I help him? Every time I know my life is in grave danger and I am praying to get to safety, to call mental health to take him into custody, it has been stressful.

With the current laws in effect, families and mental healthy officials, and law officer’s hands are tied. We need an amendment to be enacted for the true benefit of mentally ill people. When people are confined against their wishes, if necessary, keep them in the hospital, make it mandatory that medication is taken, and do not release them until they are compliant. When the correct medicines and correct dosages have been discovered and the patient is being maintained on this regime for 30 to 45 days, then and only then, begin readying the patient for transition back into the community. A group home would be the most appropriate home setting, maybe not for all, but definitely for my adult child.

So if we present from the beginning to patients and families that this begins with a physical issue, and may become a problem that distorts thought processes, perhaps we will observe less prejudice and voluntary compliance from patients and families.

Jean E. Delk