Summary: Bonnie had her first psychotic break when she was 16. Now 27, she and her family talk about the illness as it hit them then, and about living with it since. They discuss the tensions and emotions they felt, including their helplessness and guilt. Her parents and sister wonder if it was something they did. Bonnie describes her own emotions, including her paranoia and her feelings of guilt when she felt she was destroying her parents' marriage
Participants: Bonnie, Andrea Blodgett (social worker)
Summary: Bonnie talks with social worker Andrea Blodgett about the experience of having schizophrenia and what she has learned about coping with this illness. The discussions include the reality of the voices, the need to trust people, checking on one's own perceptions, and accepting the illness as part of recovery. Bonnie, her parents, and Andrea discuss the role of medications, and they try to answer the question, "How much can one expect?" Finally, they explore the nature of recovery and the importance of not giving up hope
Participants: Kathy ( Bonnie's sister), Linda Husar (social worker)
Summary: Bonnie's sister Kathy describes how having a sister with schizophrenia affected her life. She talks with Linda Husar, M.S.W., a social worker who also has a mentally ill sibling. Among the topics: how the illness affected Kathy's career, marriage, and decision to have children; trying to be perfect; guilt; being afraid but not talking about it; thinking about the future.