My local newspaper featured a story about a young man with serious mental-health issues (bipolar disorder, ADHD, and possibly autism). Recently he’s been arrested two times and since he just turned eighteen, programs, which had been available, disappeared overnight. His mother, in despair, sought out help and the funny thing is help arrived.
I’m sure you’ve read about fundraisers for children and adults with cancer or heart disease, etc. Last June I posted about that with the question, How come no one reaches out to families struggling with mental illness? Where are the casseroles and offers of car rides for doctor visits? Where’s the empathy?
In NH we are fortunate to have mental-health courts, especially with the closing of hospitals and subsequent turning of jails into last-stop hotels, where no one can be refused admission. When an illness is at the root of a “crime,” instead of locking up the individual, alternative measures are taken. While there are still some falling through the cracks, in this case, due to the mother’s pleas and the police recognizing there is more to the situation than meets the eye, he will get another chance. And here’s the part in the article that caught my attention—individuals are offering to help. I never expected to see this—especially with all the stories about MI and violence in the media (James Holmes in Colorado and Jared Loughner in Arizona). So, hooray to the folks who can look past the “Psycho” headlines and do the right thing.