When your child has a broken leg ……?

‘When you live with insanity, you can become insane,’ a  woman with a sick son told me. ‘Living with someone who has a mental illness is a series of crises. I grew up learning that when you have a crisis, you handle it and it’s over. But, with schizophrenia, there’s no rest. There’s simply another crisis.’  A few days later, she sat in a room with 20 other parents who knew just what she meant. The air was heavy with emotion as moms, dads and wives told of living with a loved one who was mentally ill. There was so much drama. Some told how their grown kids refused to admit that they were ill and refused to get help. The parents worried about their young grandchildren who were living with a parent struggling with mental illness.

Desperate to help, some told of legal steps to get guardianship of their 20 something child. ‘How do you continue to remain graceful, and loving? How do you stop your mouth from saying, this is a crazy world?’ a frustrated mom asked.’ At this support group, run by a social worker, we can say this kind of stuff and know that everyone present understands.’ ‘All this sounds so familiar,’ another mother said as she listened to parents telling how sick with worry about their children they were. ‘When someone you love has a mental illness, you are sucked in and so is the rest of the family. When a family member is concerned, there’s a sense of connection that makes it complicated,’ a father said. ‘You have a sense of responsibilty no matter how old your child is. But, how much responsibility? My son is 32. The most difficult thing is to know where the boundaries of this disease are. Is the responsibility on his part for his behavior or is it the disease? Where is that fine dividing line?’

A mother said; ‘I pray for discernment but it’s very elusive. If your child has a broken leg, you don’t feel like beating him up for not being able to walk, do you?”


One thought on “When your child has a broken leg ……?

  1. michael

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