In a unique attempt to synthesize the patient experience in an era of revolutionary change in medication and psychosocial treatment of schizophrenia, this volume is founded on autobiographical accounts of persons suffering schizophrenia and related disorders. Personal statements are drawn from a variety of sources including consumer newsletters, professional journals, personal conversations, and book written by former patients. Presented in a conceptual framework of self theory and coping and adaptation, material is arranged to present common patterns of inner experience and illuminate behavioral patterns that have puzzled mental health practitioners. Topics range from the patient's sense of mental disturbance as it affects the emotions, the sense of self, relationships, and behavior, to acceptance of the illness and growth toward recovery. This book will prove useful to psychiatrists, social workers and psychiatric nurses who wish to increase their empathetic understanding of those they treat. It also serves as a useful textbook in courses dealing with the psychopathology and clinical skills in training.
Agnes B. Hatfield, Ph.D. is Professor Emeritus at the University of Maryland. Founding member and third president of the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI), she currently serves as Family Education Specialist at that organization. She has served as Director of the Maryland Family Education Program for the Maryland Department of Mental Hygiene since 1982. Author of FAMILY EDUCATION IN MENTAL ILLNESS and numerous articles and book chapters, she is co-editor with Harriet Lefley of FAMILIES OF THE MENTALLY ILL: COPING AND ADAPTATION.