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Showing posts from March, 2011

NABJ Panel on Schizophrenia Awareness-- The Experience

Today I participated on a National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) panel on Schizophrenia awareness in Washington D.C. My fellow panelists included: Judge Arthur Burnett, Sr., Annelle Primm, M.D., M.P.H., Xavier Amador, PhD, Jennifer Ayers-Moore, and Jennifer Pifer-Bixel, and moderator Vicki Mabrey (and with us in the photograph are some of Janssen's executives). Here is a summary of the panel discussion...

We discussed a range of Schizophrenia information: the basics or symptoms, myths, and personal testimonies. More specifically, we mentioned the need for more education and success stories in the media. Additionally, "Assertive Community Treatment (A.C.T.)" groups were discussed in regards to helping people living with a diagnosis stay involved in their treatment and to get the necessary resources to move forward in their recovery. "ACT" teams generally consist of a group of health care professionals that assist people in the healing process. Another g…

Whose to Blame

Whose to blame for my mental illness? Is it me, is you?... I presented a NAMI In Our Own Voice program for another Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) class yesterday. After the presentation, one of the class participants came to me and told me he felt responsible for my mental health. He worked at my old college and felt like he or someone from the institution should have been there for me when the symptoms of Schizophrenia seemed to have got the best of me. While I attended that school, I did not have insight into my mental health. In fact, I did not even know what a mental illness was!

Even when the symptoms of Schizophrenia tormented me, I did not know it was beyond my control. Many times, I prayed and meditated for peace of mind and for the angels to protect me as I go to my destination. I was very religious and had delusions that I was prophet of God. I prayed for protection because I felt like I was fighting a spiritual battle everyday. In other words, spiritual welfare between me an…