White Trillium Press   

Advocating for Someone with a Mental Illness
by Sonya Nesch

Table of Contents

Preface

Acknowledgments

Introduction


Chapter One: THE BEGINNING

Confusion, Recognition, and Acceptance

Advocate/Partner

Finding a Medical Provider

Medical Evaluation and Diagnosis

Medical and Symptom History

Medical Treatment

  • Finding the Right Medication(s)
  • Medications
  • Symptom Breakthrough and Relapse
  • Multiple Brain Disorders
  • Blood Tests
  • Paying for Medical Treatment

Chapter Two: MEDICAL STABILITY AND THE ROAD TO RECOVERY

Medication Management Meetings

Development of a Crisis Intervention Plan for Symptom Breakthrough or Relapse

Medication Changes

Support Group for Consumers

Individual Counseling for Consumers

Complementary Practitioners


Chapter Three: PROBLEMS FACED BY ADVOCATES

Consumer Relapses

Consumer Denial of Illness and Refusal to Take Medications

Consumer Crisis–Suicidal, Psychotic, Violent Behavior

Consumer Living at Home

Dual Diagnosis: Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorder

Communication

Smoking

Encounters with the Criminal Justice System

Dealing with Difficult People

Embarrassing Public Behavior

Dealing with Guilt

Dealing with Perpetual Grief

Family Issues

  • Parents
  • Siblings
  • Holidays
  • Representative Payee for SSI, SSDI, and VA Benefits
  • Conservatorship
  • Special Needs Trusts and Estate Planning
  • PLAN—Planned Lifetime Assistance Network

Dealing with Our Attachment to Particular Outcomes

Spiritual Questions


Chapter Four: SUPPORT AND SELF-CARE FOR ADVOCATES
AND FAMILY MEMBERS

NAMI Support Group and Education for Advocates and Family Members

Individual Counseling for Advocates and Family Members

Self-Care for Advocates and Family Members


EPILOGUE

Appendix 1: Sample Letter of Medical and Symptom History

Appendix 2: Mental Illness Symptom List

Appendix 3: Medication History Record

Appendix 4: Sample Counseling Issues List for Consumer and Advocate

Appendix 5: Sample Letter to Stop the Unsafe Release of Someone Who is Suicidal

Appendix 6: Sample Letter to Stop the Unsafe Release of Someone Who is a Danger to Others

Appendix 7: Sample Letter to Public Defender or Private Attorney

Appendix 8: Selected Resources

Appendix 9: Selected Bibliography

advocating for someone with a mental illness



advocating for someone with a mental illness
Sonya Nesch
P.O. Box 309
Comptche, CA 95427
707-937-3339

contact sonya nesch