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Creating a Support System

Support is crucial to recovery from any mental illness. Everybody needs some sort of support. For those of you who do not have family support I have come up with some suggestions to build your own family of support. I know that what I am about to share with you may sound easy, but it is not, therefore I commend for making an effort in getting support.

You can join a Clubhouse. A Clubhouse is a place where you can build relationships with other people who are affected by mental illness. You can also learn how to cope with symptoms, get back into school, find a job, and find quality housing options. To get an idea of what a Clubhouse is about here is a list of some Clubhouses to visit:

1) Fountain House
2) International Center for Clubhouse Development
3) Spring City Corner Clubhouse
4) Contra Costa Clubhouses, Inc.
5) Clubhouse of Lehigh County

Join an organization such as National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) that caters to mental illnesses. In addition to NAMI, you can join Mental Health America. If you know of any other great organizations please provide them, I know there are a lot out there.

Join a church family. I do not know your beliefs, however, there is a religious group for everyone. You can meet a lot of people by attending various activities. I've been a member of a few different churches, and still have friends from these churches. We worship together, fellowship together, and support each other's needs.

Get involved with your local mental clinic. The center may offer classes where you could meet and build relationships with other people.

Finally, online support groups are helpful. They allow you to share experiences, ask for advice, and to meet other people affected by mental illness, the same as if you were in an in-person group setting. Here are a couple of online support groups that I use: and Schizophrenia Support

In my experience, joining a Clubhouse, getting involved with the local mental health clinic, online support group, and joining a church were the most beneficial to me because I got that personal welcome and people knew each other by name. There was a tight knit group of people wanting to support me. However, you may feel that joining an organization is more beneficial to you.

Where do you get support?


The Drifter said…

Thank You for commenting. I understand what you mean.
I get alot of support from my family and friends but I also have an 'online family'. I've been blogging on MySpace about bi-polar disorder for over a year and have 'met' many others who are afflicted with the illness as well as schizophrenia.

Their comments and feedback remind me that I'm not the only one and others know EXACTLY how I feel.
Valash said…
I am glad you are getting the support you need. I also have online support that I forgot to mention, I'll edit this post to include them.

Anonymous said…
I get support from my wife. She's my rock. I also blog on four sites.,and, and

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