When one’s child starts behaving strangely, his/her siblings feel as though they are in the limelight. They avoid answering questions about their mentally ill sibling. They shy away from the hospital in case they meet somebody there who knows them. And when kids at school make jokes about mental illness, these siblings find reasons to disappear as they do not want to be present when their peers laugh. It’s too hurtful. Kids whisper and pass notes around about people who are cuckoo, lunatic, psycho, crazy, killers, schizo, nuts and maniacs. These are slang words to describe mental illness and bullies as well as regular kids use them out of ignorance because they have little understanding of what mental illness is really about. A person with a mental illness needs the support of his/her family and of their peers. They need the support of their friends and neighbors as well as of their teachers, professors and coaches alike.
How would you feel if you were in the same situation?