Mental illness and family challenges

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Mental illness and family challenges

When a family learns that a child has a mental illness or a teenager has a mental illness, it is frequently overwhelming, traumatic, and quite painful. I encourage people to follow this basic rule of thumb in mental health, which is, never worry alone. By joining a group like NAMI or parent group or getting a therapist for yourself, you basically allowed a place for you to share this trauma, upset, complication, or overwhelming challenge, so you are not bearing the burden alone. The child needs you to take care of yourself. Which seems like, yet, another unbelievable task that you are being asked to do. They do need their parents, as best they can, to get help for themselves as well. I really encourage parents to participate in organizations, such as NAMI or other ways to detoxify all of this stress and trauma. Over time, you will realize you are not alone, and that other people are actually doing quite well with these problems.

Watch Video: Mental illness and family challenges by Kenneth Duckworth, MD, ...


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Kenneth Duckworth, MD

Psychiatrist, Harvard Professor & Medical Director for NAMI

Ken Duckworth, MD, serves as the medical director for NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness. He is triple board certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in Adult, Child and Adolescent, and Forensic Psychiatry and has extensive experience in the public health arena.

Dr. Duckworth is currently an Assistant Clinical Professor at Harvard University Medical School, and has served as a board member of the American Association of Community Psychiatrists. Dr. Duckworth has held clinical and leadership positions in community mental health, school psychiatry and now also works as Associate Medical Director for Behavioral Health at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts.

Prior to joining NAMI in 2003, Dr. Duckworth served as Acting Commissioner of Mental Health and the Medical Director for Department of Mental Health of Massachusetts, as a psychiatrist on a Program of Assertive Community Treatment (PACT) team, and Medical Director of the Massachusetts Mental Health Center.

Dr. Duckworth attended the University of Michigan where he graduated with honors and Temple University School of Medicine where he was named to the medical honor society, AOA. While at Temple, he won awards for his work in psychiatry and neurology. He also has a family member living with mental illness.

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