Self-preservation in families dealing with mental illness

Learn about: Self-preservation in families dealing with mental illness from Jay Gaylen,...
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Self-preservation in families dealing with mental illness

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Self-preservation. It is a big issue when you are looking at a scenario when you are living with a child who has mental illness. When you are on the airplane and they say when the oxygen mask drops, put it on yourself first before you put it on your child. You really need to heed that advice. It's all about respite, because you are living through a roller coaster ride. Your hair is being blown back and everything is being emptied out of your life; your feelings, your emotions, your bank account. It's traumatic. You are going through a car accident daily with your child. If you don't stop to take care of yourself, you are going to lose it all. That's the last thing you want to do because you are trying to keep your family together. No matter what your child is putting you through, no matter what your child is going through; it's your child. You love your child more than anything. I would do anything for my child. I would have had my house paid off this year if it weren't for what we have had to do for our child and now I've got a 30 year mortgage again. You love your kid. You do everything you can for your kid. No regrets.

Learn about: Self-preservation in families dealing with mental illness from Jay Gaylen,...

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Jay Gaylen

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Jay Gaylen is the dad of a now 22-year old daughter who was diagnosed as a teen with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), Bi-Polar II and ADHD. Jay and his wife, Renu, adopted Joslyn from Thailand. The process started when Joslyn was just nine months old. It took nearly two years to complete the adoption process — a good reason why Joslyn is a RAD kid. They sought help from numerous resources before discovering NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness). Jay began lecturing for NAMI’s Parents and Teachers as Allies program while being trained to teach the Family to Family and Basics courses.

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