Shot in the Head, a Sister's Memoir, a Brother's Struggle -w/ Schizophrenia

Background to the story

I was the second of ten children, my brother Paul eighth.  He was 16 when he suffered his first psychotic episode. When Paul also developed lung cancer I had to step up to help in his care.  While maneuvering through the maze of our mental health system, my siblings and I got to know social workers and the employees of adult and nursing homes on a first name basis, saw friends and family less often, missed work, and ate fewer meals at home and more fast food.  Along the way, I changed in unforeseen ways, and my perception of my brother, Paul, changed at well.    


When not writing, I participate in advocacy efforts to improve the care of people with serious mental illness. I serve on the communications and executive committees of the National Shattering the Silence Coalition, an organization that tries to inform our lawmakers of ways they can better serve the people in this country who suffer from crippling brain disorders.


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Read Shot in the Head, a Sister's Memoir, a Brother's Struggle

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On line journal essay

From time to time, I submit essays or poetry to journals. This is a link to an essay titled Dancing with my Brother, an excerpt from my schizophrenia memoir that focuses on an afternoon during his end of life care.


Cordella Magazine

videos

The Great Emptying: The closing of psychiatric hospitals send hundreds of thousands of mentally ill people to the streets. My brother was one of them.

Why I titled my book Shot in the Head, a Sister's Memoir a Brother's Struggle.