August 07, 2012

Editor’s note: The Los Angeles Times recently published a story about NAMI’s new national board president, Keris Myrick. The reporter, Anna Gorman, has since received many comments from readers. Here is one of them.


Thank you so much for your article featuring Keris Myrick and her accomplishments in the face of mental illness.

I have a son, age 23, who was diagnosed bipolar with schizophrenic episodes and it has been one of the most difficult challenges of my role as parent. Since this is so new for me—he had a breakdown at college last November and has been hospitalized five times since then— my hope continues for him when I read articles like yours that feature someone who has dealt with the challenge and stigma of mental illness and has forged on to function very well, in my opinion, to lead a very productive life.

My son has yet to come to terms with his illness, only recognizing that he sometimes gets depressed and because of his holistic approach to life and natural eating, doesn't like to take the medications prescribed. I have become very familiar with NAMI and have taken their Family-to-Family course, which I highly recommend, to help me be more educated and understanding of its effects on those who live with mental illness.

I want to praise you and the L.A. Times for featuring articles like this to help with the stigma and education on the subject. I think that this article, with the works of other groups like NAMI and actresses like Glenn Close and her work with Bring Change 2 Mind, only help bring attention to one of the most devastating illnesses to strike families.

I am one most grateful parent and NAMI activist. I'm currently trying to step up to the plate as I have become a Team Captain for our local NAMI Walk to help the cause.

Blessings to you and a big THANK YOU!!! 

Cindie Bassett, L.M.T.

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