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All Good Things…

This is going to be short.

 

I don’t have much to say.

 

Jani is still struggling with the tactile hallucinations that she is having loose stool (diarrhea). She wants me to check her pants all the time. It is all I can do to keep her from pulling down her pants in public. She always wants me to touch her rear end to check. I tell her she doesn’t but she won’t accept that. Even when I touch her backside and say, “Nope, all dry,” she still doesn’t quite believe it. I see her reach back to check. She really can’t tell. Today, on the way to her equine therapy, she was afraid she would poop on the horse. I told her that the horse was far more likely to poop on her. I got a smile from her on that one.

 

It has given me a sense of how intense tactile hallucinations are. Her visual hallucinations are mostly harmless. We don’t deal with demons and “shadow men” and other horrors that I have heard from other schizophrenics. There is nothing worse that seeing a child scream in terror at something you can’t see. There is no experience that makes one feel so powerless than to be unable to comfort a child in fear. And you know what feeling powerless does? It makes you afraid. And fear leads to anger. You get short with your child, annoyed. Because you can’t fix it. That is your job as a parent. To protect your child. And you can’t do it.

 

And some of you wonder why I can get mean.

 

It gets hard to hold on to your humanity. As parent you are supposed to be strong. Unfortunately, the mind of a mentally ill child is stronger. It can create thoughts, feelings, and visions you can do nothing about.

 

There have been times when I dosed Jani with Benadryl to knock her out. Because at least she is out of her misery for awhile.

 

For some kids that doesn’t work. I have known many mentally ill children whose bodies fight off the Benadryl. By the way, we are not talking children’s Benadryl. We are talking the adult dose. 25 mg per pill.

 

Hospitals use Benadryl as a standard PRN because unlike anti-psychotics, it is essentially harmless. Actually, thorazine was accidentally discovered by a French lab looking for a new anti-histamine. It is better to drug into sedation then let someone suffer. I am sure a few of you are gasping at that and adding it to your list of “Reasons Michael Schofield is Evil” but I stand by it. Watch a child suffer scratch themselves until they bleed because they feel “itchy.” Watch a child pull out his teeth because “it makes my mouth feel better.” Watch a child cut himself with a knife and write on the walls in his own blood. And then ask yourself how long you could take that before you will do whatever it takes to put them to sleep, to give him a moment of peace.

 

That is why those of you who don’t believe in child mental illness or in mental illness at all sicken me. Because what I described fucking happens every day. Come over to the Jani Foundation page at www.facebook.com/janifoundation and listen to the stories. Actually, don’t. Because I don’t want you bothering the desperate parents over there. You will never believe it until you see it. Oh, I know. Somebody once “labeled” you something you disagreed with. You got hospitalized against your will.  You got pills shoved down your throat. They made you feel like a zombie. And now you have an axe to grind with the world that did that to you.

 

Okay, I can understand that. You’re pissed off and now you think all psychiatry is quackery and lies. Can I give you some advice? Let it go. You know why? Because you are okay. You aren’t hurting herself. You aren’t cutting yourself or pulling out your own teeth. So you were a little “weird,” a little “eccentric,” so you think, and somebody put you in the loony bin for it. Consider yourself lucky that you are functional enough to post hateful comments to me. Consider yourself lucky that you have the luxury of believing the cure is worse than the disease.

 

Go on with your life now. Enjoy it.

 

And leave us to deal with the children for whom the disease will always be worse than the “cure.” We are parents. We don’t want our children to suffer. And we will do anything we have to do to prevent that from happening.

 

Bodhi is still a work in progress, a developing human. We still don’t know what is waiting inside his mind. Tonight I tried to build a train set with him. I would almost get it finished and then he would suddenly pick it up and throw it, a big smile on his face, like it was all a game.

 

He’s three. Maybe it’s nothing. Maybe not. No way to know right now. Verbally he is improving but he still lags far behind where Jani was at this age. But Jani was speaking in grammatically correct sentences at 18 months. I could have full conversations with her before she was two. So I don’t really know what “normal” is.

 

Damn. This was supposed to be quick. I need to get back to work on the third draft of my book because the faster I write, the closer I get (hopefully) to the next part of my advance. And then I won’t have to do what I am going to do now.

 

You knew it was coming.

 

I hate the end of every month because I know I can’t make rent, let alone any of the other bills. And then I hate the beginning of the month, watching the First become the Second become the Third become the Fourth, always checking the Paypal account, desperately hoping there will be enough there to make the rent, to keep the roofs over both children’s heads.

 

So, yes, I am asking for money again.

 

You don’t like it? That’s fine. You don’t need to say anything. You’ve said your piece. I heard you. Your comments are up there after all the other blogs I’ve written asking for money. My personal favorite is “I came here wanting to learn about life with mental illness.” That’s funny to me because what do you think this is? You think that chronic mental illness and never having enough money aren’t related? This IS life with mental illness, or an aspect of it. I’ve explained why time and time again but I guess I will do it again. BECAUSE NO ONE ELSE CAN TAKE CARE OF OUR CHILDREN AND KEEP THEM SAFE. THEY NEED 24 HOUR A DAY CARE. THAT MAKES IT HARD TO WORK. Because I am a college instructor, I am luckier than most in the sense that I can still work a little bit. But I can never be gone too long. Because all I ever think about is how Susan and Jani and Bodhi are doing while I’m gone.

 

Parents of children with chronic physical illnesses often can’t work either, for the same reason. Yet nobody begrudges them. It’s part of the double standard in our society that mental illness is still not treated as a “real” illness.

 

So this is life with a mentally ill child. It’s also life being a mentally ill adult, most of whom also need financial help to stay alive. This IS our life, people. If you aren’t comfortable with the constant financial need, then I suggest you fight for respite care, for individuals trained in psychosis who we would feel safe enough leaving our children with to go to work.

 

Your other option is to pack up the van and get out of town. ‘Cuz this is Schizophrenia Town. So many of you are fascinated until I stick my hand out. And then you get all flustered. I am the guy standing on the corner of the freeway off-ramp with a sign. You know that guy. You look away, pretend not to see him. You would never say the things to him that you say to me. But thanks to the anonymity of the net you don’t have to deal with the consequences of hurting someone.

 

Or having them come through your driver’s side window to get you J

 

You make your comments from a distance, safe in your own little world, far away from mine and every other family and mentally ill person on the Jani Foundation Facebook page.

 

Contrary to popular belief, I never “expect” people to donate. Every time I write one of these blogs, asking for money, I never know if this will be “it:” The time I don’t get enough donations to pay the rent. It hasn’t come yet, because of the generosity of many, but I know it could come at any time. This, however, could be the time. This might be the time when I have tapped out my generous readers for the last time. This might be the time when all my readers are so broke themselves (most are) that they are on the edge of the cliff themselves.

 

I never know. Every time I ask for money from you, it is indeed a total shot in the dark. I never know if this will finally be the month I run out of luck.

This month, I have that feeling very strongly that luck might have finally run out. I don’t know exactly why. You’ve pulled us from the jaws of eviction twice before. But I got a bad feeling this time. Maybe it is because two of our family’s most consistent benefactors, Carl and Dawn, are running low themselves. Maybe it is that everybody I know, and I mean EVERYBODY, is facing the abyss of financial oblivion as well. Or maybe it is just that all good things, even those that are noble and just, must eventually come to an end.

 

In every game, the clock runs out eventually.

 

Thanks to many of you, I have beat it for nearly two years. I have maintained the two apartments, which Jani needs now more than ever. But I always knew that there was a chance I would lose eventually.

 

Has the time finally come? I don’t know. If you don’t hear from me again for awhile (because the internet got shut off) you’ll have your answer.

 

So I thought this time I would take you through what will happen if this is it.

 

Don’t worry. It’s not going be a threat. No “gloom and doom.” Just reality. That’s what you came here for, right? Although I should warn a lot of my readers this is going to strike pretty close to home, no pun intended.

 

Rent is due on the July 1st. Our apartment complex, like most, offers a three day “grace period,” so the final day to pay rent without penalty (like the late fee) is July 3rd, a Sunday.

 

Thank God for Independence Day. That buys us an extra day because the leasing office will be closed.

 

So I will assume that rent won’t actually be “late” until July 5th, when they return. On this day, they will go over who hasn’t paid rent and write up what is called a “Three Day ‘Pay or Quit’” notice. Basically, it says we have three days to pay rent or vacate the premises. Normally we would only get one for one apartment but I am so deep in the hole it will be for both this time.

 

Maybe we will get lucky and they won’t post the “Three day pay or quit” notice until the 6th, but I doubt it. They are pretty efficient here.

 

But for the benefit of the doubt, let’s say I don’t have the rent by the 9th. Hmm. The 9th is a Saturday so that means they might send us to Riverstone’s legal department on Friday the 8th. The legal department will then begin the process of filing a lawsuit to have us evicted. They probably won’t start this until Monday the 11th so let’s assume we get the “Notice of Civil Filing” on Wednesday the 13th. Maybe we will get lucky and it will take until Friday the 15th. At this point I would normally have enough to pay rent on one apartment, combining my paycheck from CSUN (we are paid on a 12 month schedule) and unemployment, but now we will have to pay an extra 500 or 600 dollars in legal fees to get Riverstone legal to withdraw the lawsuit. Out of my league again.

 

Okay, by the 15th we will definitely have the notice of civil proceedings to be evicted in our hand. On that notice will be a hearing date. The civil courts here are humming along in North LA County so the hearing will be before the end of July, maybe the week of the 25th. I will go to this hearing. I will probably have to take Jani with me. In this hearing, I will explain our situation to the judge and ask for an extension. Hopefully I can get an extension to the beginning of August.

 

Right before Jani’s 9th birthday.

 

Of course, the Court isn’t just going to let us skate by not paying the rent. Eventually we will have to pay it or the Court will award for the plaintiff, in this case Riverstone Management.

 

If I am lucky, I can buy enough time to get into August.

 

During this entire time, I will be doing what I am doing now, doing the only shot I have at financial stability: finish the book and do it well enough that the publisher accepts it for production and pays off the second portion of my advance. That is my only shot. That is what I need to buy time to finish.

 

That is what you are buying if you can and are willing to help by donating to us.

 

So that’s the plan.

 

We’ll see how it works out.

 

Hopefully I will get to talk to you again soon.

 

If I don’t, I want to thank all of you who have kept us going these past two years. You kept my family together. That is a debt I can never repay.

 

Thank you.

 

Thank you.

 

Catch you on the flip side.

42 comments on “All Good Things…

  1. uuurgh
    You know that photo-sensitivity that the thorazine causes? When you actually take the stuff and stand in daylight – it feels like needles jagging into every pore of your body….it itches and its painful – minues later you’re skin is burning. You do know that thorazine is fundamentally a muscle relaxant that incontinance (or the sensation of) is a regular side effect.

    i.e. What you call tactile halucinations are in fact side effects of the drugs.

    Note from Michael: I am well aware of the extreme photosensitivity caused by thorazine. That is why we are very careful in the sun and slather on 100 spf sunblock. However, her itchiness magically goes away when she is engaged with animals, like right now. We are taking care of a colleague’s cat. And there is no actual “incontinence.” It is the anxiety that it is going to happen and it is actually relieved by the thorazine somewhat. Try not to see everything through the lens of “Drugs are awful.” Clearly you missed everything I wrote about kids pulling out their teeth or scratching themselves raw… before medications.

  2. I am writing this as some kind of support, though I understand you need more money than words at this point. This is my first time on your blog, I was reading it all over. The place where I came from don’t have anything done about children with mental illness. We had few cases and what instituion did with them is horrifying! What are you going trough is something most of us will never know. My mom has schizoprenia, quite bad one too. But that can’t compare with having your child sick in this way. What I want to say is, that you are doing great job. Not only for your own familiy, but for others also. You are spreading awareness about children with this illnes and I understand it’s hard, becuase you’re basicly one of the first ones doing this. There is noone that can be in good mood all the time and acting like the pope, and you shouldn’t feel bad about being human. You fight with this best way you can. Don’t give up! All four of you are in my heart and I feel for you even though I don’t know you.

    Note from Michael: Thank you, Sanja. Kind words are always appreciated. They make the day easier to deal with. I also appreciate the Slovenian perspective. In our private support group, we have members from the US, Canada, Australia, and the UK. We are growing. One day the Jani Foundation will make it to Slovenia. I promise you that.

  3. All of you are in my prayers
    I’m sorry that you have to do this every month. You’re right, our society does not acknowledge mental illness as a real illness. They do think you can just get over it. I’ve donated what I can, and will continue to do what I can as I can. I know every little bit helps.

    I’m praying that everyone that reads this, understands what the right thing to do is and NO, it’s not saying rude things. It’s helping someone that needs a helping hand. As human beings, we should all want to help another when they are down. These parents of mentally ill children have much more to deal with, without adding the burden of paying the bills and keeping a roof over everyone’s head.

  4. You are all in my prayers
    I’m sorry that you have to do this every month. You are right about our society and their take on children with mental illness. Most don’t buy it and think you can just get over it. Nothing can be further from the truth.

    To anyone reading my comment. Please do the right thing and NO it is not writing a sarcastic comment or being rude. It is helping a fellow human being that needs help. If we would all stop being selfish and realize that the world is a much bigger than just us, we could make it a beautiful place to be. We should have no problem helping with whatever we can, when we can. We are not put here to judge others. The parents will mentally ill children have so much more to deal with than any of us will ever understand. They do not need the added burden of trying to keep an roof over their heads, etc…. so, please find your compassion and help!! Every penny counts!!

    Note from Michael: Thank you, Barbara. That was very kind of you. Although I don’t know if it is always selfishness. I think sometimes people think, “I am just one person. What can I do?” Well, one person can do a lot. You know why? Because you are not just one person. You are one of many.

  5. Michael, I work with 3 year olds and I know you have other concerns about Bhodi, but the train thing, very very typical. I will have students spend 15 minutes building something amazing out of blocks then only to knock it down and laugh before I can get a picture of it, and repeat this over and over. They particularly like to knock things over if someone else makes it (which for us results in a lesson in empathy). Often times for younger children it is an experiment of cause and effect, other times it’s just fun to knock things over.

    Note from Michael: Thanks, Cory. I appreciate that. Like I said, I don’t know what is “typical” because Bodhi is the second child and Jani was so non-typical.

  6. I understand the benadryl thing and don’t gasp at the fact that you dose Jani with it. When I first started getting sick when i was 15/16 I would take benadryl to help calm me down when I was feeling very anxious, violent and angry (lorazepam skipped off me like it was candy) it also helped with the fact that I was an insomniac (I slept about 3-4 hours a night if I was lucky). Nowadays I still take the benadryl mainly if I’m manic and 300mg of seroquel isn’t calming me down and putting me to sleep. So I fully understand and don’t condemn you at all for doing this to Jani.

    As for donating I get my disability payment tomorrow and because I’m going away for the month with my grandparents and don’t need to buy groceries I’ll send some of the money your way (I send it through my bank account linked with paypal so it’ll take a couple days to clear the bank).

    Note from Michael: Thanks for the reply. You show just how different everybody reacts to different drugs. Even with everything Jani is on she is still running around and playing. The good news is that in the last two days since I wrote this she is doing MUCH better. Summer school started and she is back on her regular schedule and that seems to be doing a world of good. She is smiling and happy again, which is wonderful to see.

  7. Michael, don’t you have any family at all to help you out? Any? I know you have mentioned Susan’s family in the Bay Area. Can they pitch in? Or your own family?

    Note from Michael: See answer above. The short answer is both do when they can but like everyone else they are stretched to the limit too.

  8. Question
    Hmm, I do not think my post went through. I was asking if any of your family, or Susan’s in the Bay Area could help out at all? And PLEASE do not yell at me for asking this question. There is not ulterior motive, I am just asking. I am a first time poster, but a long-time reader.

  9. Michael
    I keep trying to post, and it will not go through.

    I was asking if any of your family, or Susan’s in the Bay Area could help out at all? And PLEASE do not yell at me for asking this question. There is not ulterior motive, I am just asking. I am a first time poster, but a long-time reader.

    Note from Michael: Why would I yell? Your question is very reasonable. Yes, Susan’s family does help out when they can, as does mine. Unfortunately, like everyone else these days, both our sets of parents are struggling.

    Also, remember that all comments are held for review before posting so even though it looks like your first post didn’t go through, it did.

  10. To All Jani-Boosters: Re: Jani’s Castle #3
    Well, you’ve heard the news. Jani needs our help again. The eviction sharks are circling. Michael needs about two grand to meet the rent and a few other expenses.
    Now, I’m going to donate $150 tomorrow. That will leave about $1850.
    So I was thinking. If maybe a hundred or so of us would donate as little as $18.50 per person, that would be enough to keep the landlord’s sharks away for another month .
    Jani is making really good progress nowadays; but an eviction might set her back. As I’ve said before, Jani needs her castle—it gives her a sense of safety and stability.
    The way I see it, to exile Jani from her castle, is to force her into the arms of the White Rabbit—or worse, the Cheshire Cat, with its shining eyes and predatory smile. Now maybe I’m

    Note from Michael: Thanks, Carl. We are at about $400 right now. With what I get paid from CSUN that means one apartment is covered. Now we just have to cover the other. If we can’t pay internet, etc, that is okay although I need to pay the cellphone because Susan and I must be in touch all the time.

    On the plus side, Jani has been doing really well the last two days. The start of summer school and getting back into her schedule has really helped. It is like the last two hellish weeks never happened. It is amazing what having school does for her. If we could only get her to go for more than two hours, but that would overwhelm her. I am just happy to see her happy again.

  11. Very unexpected…
    God bless you for finding the energy for sarcasm in spite of getting beat down so often. When I read “‘Cuz this is Schizophrenia Town,” something about it just rubbed me the right way. Please don’t think for a minute I’m making light of what you and your family are facing. I just really needed a laugh. Thank you. Hang on. I don’t know for how long, but hang on. I hope something big comes through.

    Note from Michael: Thanks, but it wasn’t sarcasm. It was humor, an homage to “Chinatown.”

  12. I am so happy to hear that Jani is doing better! Is there any way to send money via mail? I understand if it’s not possible (it’s probably not the safest thing to be giving out your address) but I wonder if there is a local business that would let you give out there address to collect donations? I would love to donate, but it will probably be a couple weeks before I get my credit card for college, and I don’t think you guys have that long to wait.
    You and your family are in my prayers!

    Note from Michael: I appreciate that, Emily, I really do, but if I may offer some advice: careful with that credit card. Really, truly, don’t use it unless you can pay it back at the end of the month. I got into serious trouble with credit cards when I went to college 17 years ago. They were throwing them around. By the time I was 24 I had to declare bankruptcy.

  13. I understand
    Although i have never taken care of anyone young, I have been an elderly caregiver to my parents for years. One had dementia.

    Over the years I have read your posts and I completly get it. People don’t realize the stress that goes with taking care of ill people whether mentally or physically ill.

    Sometimes, as caregivers, we have to come up with creative solutions to situations that normal every day people don’t encounter.

    I have been put through the ringer by APS for stuff that I never did or that someone thought was out of the box. It was well meaning neighbors who listened to the rants of someone with dementia who felt the need to call.

    People, I can tell you, I am amazed at how well Michael and Susan handle things.

    If you are not directly involved in the caregivers life then you have no idea what it takes to do the job. It is 24-hours of intense responsibility with hardly any breaks except when those your are caring for sleep.

    It’s dealing with mental instability and outbursts and doctors and professionals that sometimes don’t have a clue.

    In my case, I quit working a regular job and very rarely go out. This has gone on for 5 years now.

    Like you Mike, there have been financial difficulties.

    I am tired of anyone who acts or says anything negative about a caregiver situation who doesn’t even have a clue as what is going on in the household.

    I know, it happens to me.

    My heart always goes out to you guys and believe me I understand.

    Note from Michael: Thank you, Anna. I worry about your isolation, though. I realize you are not caring for a child but the issues are still the same and I would love for you to feel like you had someone to vent to. In our private support group, which you can find under the “Resources” tab above: http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/parental-support/. Most members are parents but we do have few caregivers of adults. I think there is even less of a support network for you guys. So please feel free to join. Just say “Hey it’s me Anna” and I will approve you. It’s not much but I wanted to offer you something.

  14. I hear you
    Oh Michael and Susan, I hear you, and I know how hard it can be. Not trying to ask dumb questions or tell you what to do, but have you applied for SSI (Supplemental Security Income) for Jani? The reason that I ask is because I receive SSI for my mentally ill son, and it has made the difference between having a roof over our heads, or not…(If you haven’t, and need to be walked through the process, email me) I also cannot work because my son requires 24 hour care. Luckily, we have managed to stay together as a family, because my ex-husband lives 4 houses down from us, and I can send my daughter there when her brother rages and I need to get her out to keep her safe. Otherwise, my daughter would either be living with her grandparents, or we would have the same housing arrangement that you guys do (which must be so hard, and so lonely at times…I’m sorry. And I applaud you for doing what it takes.). And my husband (I divorced and remarried) is able to work, so between his wages and the SSI, we squeak by. However that puts me into the role of full time caregiver (and I can get really burned out). I am going to try to squeeze out something for you guys. I won’t know for sure until I see my husband’s check tomorrow (we haven’t paid June’s rent yet..lol I have to admit, i have the world’s best landlord). My prayers are with you.
    Jenny
    P.S. The benedryl thing? My son’s pdoc prefers we use benedryl when at all possible if my son needs to be sedated…we do have a small supply of prescription PRN’s for true emergencies, when we cannot wait for the thirty minutes for the benedryl to kick in, but if its possible to wait it out, benedryl is the way to go. And yeah, its the adult dose-25 to 50 mg depending on how manic he is at the moment. You guys are doing the right things, and trying as hard as humanly possible. Don’t let the ignorant people of the world get you down. When people criticize me, I always offer to let them babysit for an hour or two…shuts them right up. LOL Hang in there.:P

    Hi Jenny,

    Yes, Jani does get SSI. $201 per month, which I am grateful for, but again it all goes back to having to pay for two apartments. Please, you haven’t paid June rent so don’t send anything. I truly, truly appreciate that but if you don’t pay rent then I am going to feel obligated to send you money 🙂

  15. uuurgh
    you said ‘ I am well aware of the extreme photosensitivity caused by thorazine. That is why we are very careful in the sun and slather on 100 spf sunblock. However, her itchiness magically goes away when she is engaged with animals, like right now. We are taking care of a colleague’s cat. And there is no actual “incontinence.” It is the anxiety that it is going to happen and it is actually relieved by the thorazine somewhat. Try not to see everything through the lens of “Drugs are awful.” Clearly you missed everything I wrote about kids pulling out their teeth or scratching themselves raw… before medications.

    But have you ever tried the meds you’re feeding her yourself – your blog implies that’s what she’s doing now (scratching etc,) – havey ou considered the side effects may be responsible (have you seen the full list – is the opportunity cost worth it?). Have you considered listening to those who have experienced these drugs of them?

    Do you think there are none? Do you know about tardive psychosis? And as for you being well aware of photosensitivity you were patently unaware prior to te girl being on these drugs. Are you aware that pre 10 all children live in the right hemisphree?Are you aware that it takes until a child is 7 for the cerebal cortex to form? i.e. children live in what we deem to be a dream world in their waking stae?

    Have you seen the second last episode of south park?(series 15) – something about sushi – its an episode aimed directly at you, Be proud.

    Note from Michael: Ah, you again. Posting here keeps you busy, huh? I have not seen the South Park episode you refer to. I don’t exactly get a lot of time to watch TV. I highly doubt that Trey Parker and Matt Stone have any idea who I am.

    As for everything else you said, “blah, blah, blah, blah.” Like I said before, Jani’s quality of life is far better on the drugs than off. She can be happy. She can enjoy herself. Before the meds she was trying to jump out windows, something that generally five year olds do not do (and she was not on any medication at the time). She was well aware of what could happen. She wanted to die. You think I am going to risk that happening again just to placate you? Like I said in my blog, the idea that all anti-psychotic medications are bad can kill. More mentally ill die without them than with them. Your intractable ideas are putting lives at risk. You are not saving anybody. You are (inadvertently) trying to kill them. And all your theories about brain development are both unproven at this point (the fact is we know next to nothing about how the brain works-neuroscience is still in its infancy) and irrelevant because when it comes down to it, the only thing that is important is survival and quality of life. When the cerebral cortex finishes development doesn’t mean a damn thing if the brain is dead because the child is dead (and I have my doubts anyway since Jani was capable of abstract thought like “What is below zero?” before eighteen months and abstract thought requires the pre-frontal cortex. By the way, the cerebral cortex is the entire upper brain, including occipital, parietal, and pre-frontal lobes). If you want to keep having this dance we can dancing but you are never going to change my mind and it appears I am having no affect on you so perhaps it is time to find new dance partners.

  16. Getting there…
    Oh I hope you manage to pull through till August, because that’s when my student loans kick in and I’ll be able to donate again. Your family inspires me. I’m definitely going to buy your book, too…do you know when it will be released (it’s probably way to early yet to know for sure, but I’m still excited about it).
    Meryl

    Note from Michael: I don’t know the exact date but the tentative month of release is March, 2012. That is what the publisher is shooting for.

  17. i agree with carl above i have 79 dollars in my acct. i am sending 20$ please it will help everyone even if it is only .50 cents my electric was almost cut and dark triggers my brianas psychosis (6yrs old) michael and susan posted for help for me and wonderful people helped keep my lights on 1800 dollars so EVERY penny does count

  18. All I have are prayers. . .
    . . .but I keep praying them for y’all. All the time. The spirit is willing, but the bank account is weak kind-of-thing here.

    I am one of those with that chip on my shoulder for being medicated/hospitalized against my will. I do not, under any circumstances, advocate indiscriminate druggining of kids. But, at the same time, I recognize that there *are* truly mentally ill children. Not kids with emotional problems because their parents are first-class a-holes, but kids, and their families, who are living with mental illness.

    My personal “axe to grind” is more along the lines of treatment being with held from children like your beautiful Jani while other children who don’t need in patient treatment and meds are getting just that. I think it’s unfair and lopsided and all those other words I can’t think of at 1 in the morning.

    Not only will I be praying for your financial situation, but I’ll be praying for peace for y’all as well. My thoughts are with y’all.

    Erin.

    Note from Michael: I completely agree. I don’t believe in forced treatment and I sure as hell don’t believe in restraints (I think a better option is to be with someone in a psychotic state, not leave them alone). All I care about is safety and quality of life. Medications should be used to keep a mentally ill person from harming themselves in a delusional state. It is not to make them “compliant” to society. Hell, I am hardly “compliant.” Rebellion is a noble human attribute and part of what contributes to our rich culture. But if someone is hurting themselves or crippled by a fear of something unrealistic then it is cruel not to medicate, not to mention life-threatening to that person.

  19. It’s ok
    I promise I won’t send you guys anything unless I get rent caught up to current (including July), and pay power, and internet/phone bill. Deal? 🙂

    Note from Michael: Deal 🙂

  20. I knew a boy at childerens church And the childerens pastros they used to lock him in the office and woulden’t let him come out until he calmed down.

    Note from Michael: It is a common mistake but a bad one. I don’t know what this boy’s issue was but if he was psychotic the worst thing you can do is lock him away alone. But since psychosis is often confused with behavior (even by us in the beginning) this often happens. This is one of the reasons we fight to have behavior seen as a biological condition and not just “being a bad kid.”

  21. Really?
    Miss wrote – “But have you ever tried the meds you’re feeding her yourself”? I struggle with some of the people who post here. Low IQ comes to mind. Why would you take strong psychotropic drugs when you aren’t mentally ill? Seriously? Would you go through chemotherapy without a cancer diagnosis so you know what a family member endures? Perhaps I should have asked the Dr. to hook up an IV of Interleukin for me too while my sister was suffering. But wait – they won’t treat people without disease!!! These are not medications Dr.’s give without YEARS of medical training, experience, serious consideration and scientific evidence.

    My cousin hid under a church bench for 4 days convinced people were trying to kill him until a pastor found him and called for help. Only medical intervention brought him back. Perhaps we should have left him there, no food and water, messing his pants until he figured it out on his own.

    I’m sending 220.00 today. 1.00 for me, 199.00 for the other people who want to help but are not in a position to and 20.00 from Miss. Just because it will piss Miss off somebody’s donating in her/his name.

    God help the haters. May they never be in a position where they need a helping hand.

    Keri E

    Note from Michael: Keri, you always leave me speechless. In a good way 🙂 I didn’t know about your sister though.

  22. Next stop: paypal
    Haven’t visited the blog for a few months, but glad you’re hanging in there and are at a point where our donations can help. The Jani Foundation Facebook posts help remind me to check in here.

    I wish that you didn’t have to go through the wringer of ignorant comments every time you post a blog entry. Along with those who write with their own axe to grind, though, there are those of us who recognize you’re doing your best to keep your family going and make the world a better place for families like yours. I hope the scales increasingly tip toward the sympathetic action-takers as time goes on.

    Note from Michael: Thanks, Jason. Actually, there have always been more positive and supportive comments than negative. The negative ones don’t bother me anymore. I just have fun with their ignorance, like good ole “Miss,” who I think just told me I am “naughty.” Must be an English nanny 🙂

  23. Hi there. I have been following your story for a while now and am just so amazed at the resilience of your children! Their lives have been no cup of tea! I had some questions that I was wondering if you could answer for me please?

    First of all, Isn’t it true that Jani DID in fact have bowel incontinence/ loose stool as you call it and that your wife admitted it was a side effect of the lithium? Did this occur more than one time? When it happened was it very traumatic for Jani? I guess I am wondering why you are calling her concerns about it happening again “tactile halucinations”? Is it possible that because this did in fact happen at least one time before that she is not hallucinating but merely worrying it has happened again? Is it too much of a stretch to consider that she may have some heightened sensitivity accompanied with the worry of it happening again?

    I also heard that over this situation that you increased her thorazine to deal with this. Is that true? Was her dr consulted in all of this? did they have anything to say regarding the lithium side effects and the damage it is doing to her digestion?

    I was also wondering if your dr was aware and in agreement about you dosing Jani with benedryl to calm her down? Were you aware that benedryl has some side effects if taken in high doses? Did you know that hallucinations were a side effect? Do you know if there are any drug interactions with the drugs Jani is on (lithium, clozaril and thorazine)and the benedryl?

    Did you know that pediatricians consider giving children OTC medications that were not intended for their original use – child abuse? What do you think about all of those things?

    I know that you have the very best interests for your children at heart so I just wanted to know what you thought about all of this? Myself and the rest of your readers would really like to hear your answers to these questions because we know how hard you are fighting the “corrupt mental health system” for yourself and for the rest of us and our children. Do you feel any of that corruption lies with the drs or the pharmeceutical companies? really appreciate your well written wisdom here Michael. Can you help us out?

    Note from Michael: Yes, lithium did and can cause diarrhea. The reason I call the current situation a “tactile hallucination” as opposed to anxiety about something that happened in the past is that she actuallY FEELS it happening RIGHT NOW when it is not.

    Second question: Of course her doctor was consulted, on both the thorazine increase (which is only as needed) and the Benadryl (which is also only as needed). Because of the fact that Jani takes Clozaril, she must, under the law, get a CBC and Chem panel taken every two weeks, and metabolic and endocrine panel about once a month, for precisely the purpose of making sure any of the medications are not causing any damage. So, at least in Jani’s case, she is EXTREMELY closely watched for even the slightest sign that the medications might be causing damage.

    I think you had other questions but I will get to them later. Got to get back to Jani now.

  24. There’s such a thing as talking to the gallery. I’ve lost many friends to psychiatry – they died….mainly of heart failure….with the others it was a stroke. YOU REALLY HAVE TO STOP PROMOTING THE FALSEHOOD THAT MOST DIAGNOSED MENTALLY ILL WOULD BE DEAD WERE IT NOT FOR MEDS. IT’s VERY NAUGHTY OF YOU. and btw – I’ve rescued three five year olds in my time from windows – whan a child is 5 their concept of death is NOT the same as an adults. And what are you doing teaching an 18 month old negative numbers (trying to create a genius were you?)

    Its your promotion of these meds for behavioural issues in kids that’s a real concern. I’ve shown several UK psyches your stuff and they are as stunned as me at what you’re doing. I’m not ‘dancing’ with you – I’m trying to protect others from your misinformation.

    I see you have a reputation for inapropriate disclosure to your students who reckon you’re obviously unstable – I concur. I have never witnessed a worse case of transference as this one.

    Don’t kid yourself about South Park – you’ve created a media circus around your little girl – and they’ve picked up on it alright. I’d be embarrassed – but I don’t reckon you’re capable of that.

  25. Dear Miss
    Dear Miss,
    I wish you understood the road that Susan, Michael, myself, my husband, and countless others walk everyday. It is a long, hard, dark road, full of obstacles we cannot see, potholes, things to trip over and stub our toes on. In a lot of ways, its miserable. Yet, we keep on walking, because every now and then, we’ll turn the corner, and for a brief moment, see a beam of sunlight and a rainbow. Its worth it, for the days when our children are lucid, and for a second (and believe me, its a very brief second) our lives feel “normal”. (What is normal, anyways?) And despite how hard our road is, it is nothing compared to the hell our children endure. Have you ever seen a child in a psychotic or manic state? It is one of the most heart wrenching things you will ever see. Imagine barely being able to use the bathroom because you are afraid to leave your child alone for even that long (because it only takes mere moments to cause a self injury that can leave a child scarred for life…or worse, without life… and you can remove every possible thing that you could even think they could hurt themselves with from their environment, and they can still figure out a way.) You think that putting your child on medication is a walk in the park? Do you have any idea how many hours of your life you are committing when you make that decision? Psychiatry appointments, therapy appointments, blood work appointments, the list goes on and on. Watching for side effects, mood charting…plus the judgement that we have to endure. I put my son on medication because I did not have a choice, because I had exhausted every other avenue to help him, because he deserves friends, and an education, and a life…and he was too far gone to have any of those things before. He at least has some of them now. Susan and Michael did it for the same reasons. Because, ultimately,our children are happier, and function better, with the medication than without. Are you really trying to say that you know our children better than we do, that you are better equipped to tell us when our babies are happy than we are? How far would you go to keep your child safe (and with at least a shot at happiness?) You speak of what you do not know.
    Jenny

  26. I like this quote
    “I don’t medicate my children to make my life easier. I medicate them because 1) their professional doctor or psychiatrist said to try this medication, and 2) because I really feel that my child has the right to be treated for an illness that is biological in nature and destroying their lives. Any parent would want to fix what is harming their child. If that means we try medications than we do.” Amy Hellman
    Here is her blog:
    http://amyhellman.wordpress.com/

  27. you said ‘As for everything else you said, “blah, blah, blah, blah.” Like I said before, Jani’s quality of life is far better on the drugs than off. She can be happy. She can enjoy herself. Before the meds she was trying to jump out windows, something that generally five year olds do not do’

    – no and 5 year old do not generally require to ask their father, and role model, to calm down and stop throwing things through walls in their presence. Nor do they generally witness their parents knocking hell out of each other, nor do they experience being hit in ‘impotent rage’ by both of their parents.

    I am a long experienced parent and to behave like that with any child is unthinkable – and to think that your conduct has no consequences – is stupidity at it’s most dangerous. Hitting her because you have deemed her so frustrating due to mental illness is a mandate for acceptable abuse against children – poor you the vitim of your mentally ill ‘violent’ infant. You’re just a bad parent….your hero worshippers are as ignorant as you are with no insight into poor characters like you.

    Comparing taking thorazine to undergoing chemo is another stufpid analogy. Take one thorazine – it won’t kill you – that’s only long term – but you’ll soon realise that these tactile halucinations are your daughters medicated reality. You think these drugs have no side effects on her? She’d be the ONLY one – what side effects do you acknowledge? blah blah blah

    Don’t try and pretend that psychiatrists or their diagnoses are real – if i have diabetes in london – i have it in ny, australia, india, africa – the same cannot be said of mental illness.

    Note from Michael: Obviously, someone mentally ill on a blog in the United States is also mentally ill in the UK. What a ridiculous statement. Of course a mentally ill person is mentally ill in every country where they might go. It is just that some doctors, like your UK docs, are able to stick their heads in the sand because it isn’t their children.

    By the way, it’s been nice talking to you again, Isis/all the stupid names you used to use on my old blog, but you ARE the weakest link. Goodbye.

    Oh, and trust me. I’m the Doctor.

  28. Sleep not always good.
    I have to say for Isaiahs sake,that for him, Sleep brings zero relief from his Hallucinations….His dreams are hundreds of times worse than 9,000 or Ashely or the host of “Ghost’s” he sees. his nightly terrors are so bad he will keep himself moving until he collapses,exhaustion forcing his limbs to stop,his eyes to close. Then in his sleep he fights ,he struggles and cries out,waking sometimes every hour,crying out for me, reaching out to find me…I have been suggested the Benedryl but refuse to give it to him knowing I send him into psychotic dreams worse than his waking nightmares.
    He also has had tactile hallucinations,it is what drives him to obey 9,000 for fear of being stuck with needles,stabbed and choked. now it is bloody noses. he has them so often he is now hallucinating them,daily throught the day and night.
    We are still awaiting the referal to come through on his neurology appointment,untill he is checked for seizures he will only take the Respiridone,which is what is causing the activity,but take him off it and he will be back to constant melt down mode,constantly self harming to please 9,000.
    I struggle like so many with being a single parent home,unable to work because there is no one else period who could keep Isaiah safe.
    Your right, NO ONE knows what our lives are like and what choices we make each day for our child/children. They will never understand until they themselves have a child like ours and choose to keep fighting to give them a safe,loving,as happy as we can have them environment and life… Choose to parent such a child instead of handing them over to the state or residential care… So do please keep your negative opinions and ideas away from us who know what its like to pe a parent and love a child with mental illness.

  29. RE: South Park
    Note from Michael: At Kristin’s request, I have kept her comment out of the public. She didn’t want to feed the troll “Missalot” although there is little fear of that since I blocked his/her IP. This is the same person who has been hanging around ever since our story went public. First I tried to actually reason with him/her but as you can see above he/she quickly devolves into “you are a horrible parent” and “mental illness doesn’t exist.” So Miss will be gone until he/she gets a new IP address and then I am sure he/she will be back. Kristen’s point was, as I suspected, that Matt Stone and Trey Parker don’t have any clue who I am. “South Park” has much bigger targets than me although I would be flattered because it means you are making a difference if you get parodied. Anyway, Kristen had seen the episode in question and there were no references to anything resembling me or Jani. This whole “south park” thing made me laugh because “Missalot” (who is also the same person as “Isis” for those you who have been on our Youtube Channel) gives me far more credit than I deserve.

  30. More money for Miss
    “Comparing taking thorazine to undergoing chemo is another stufpid analogy.”

    The point was entirely missed. It would be futile for Michael or Susan to take the drugs. Their reaction would be vastly different because they do not have the mental illness Jani does. Hopefully I’ve simplified that enough.

    Psychiatrists don’t hand these meds out like candy. There is a very rigorous protocol that is followed prior to prescribing and intensive monitoring. They are the last resort. Michael and Susan are not promoting psychotropic drugs. They have ONLY said these drugs help their daughter. They are not encouraging parents to drug up their kids for recreational purposes. They have educated themselves and fully understand the risks involved. The great tragedy is the side effects are not as bad as the harm Jani can inflict upon herself. That is how serious her disease is. Her mental illness is so severe leaving it untreated is a worse option than giving her the medication, even though they have side effects.

    Please, leave this site to those of us who are Schofield supporters and families who need the support in fighting their own war on mental illness. You have no understanding of the pain these families go through on a daily basis. Take your ranting and hatred elsewhere.

    I’m sending another 20.00 in Miss’s name. I know deep down Miss wants to support you.

    Keri:

    Note from Michael: “Miss” has come here under many different names. Every time I block his/her IP, it takes awhile but him or her comes back again. “Miss” is also “Isis” and the same person who used to attack me on the old blog. What I find hysterical is that by this point Miss/Isis has created about a hundred email accounts/You Tube accounts, gone by at least 30 different names, and had to use God knows how many different computers to get around the IP block, all just to tell me what a bad person I am. Talk about a monumental waste of energy.


  31. Could you update us on how much more you need to make rent this month? Thanks.

    Note from Charmaine: Thanks for asking. Honestly, I am amazed at how much has come through, given how rough the money situation is for everyone. As for our current situation, we have covered one apartment (Jani’s) and are about $700 short on the second.

  32. Hi Michael,
    I’ve followed your heart warming and wrenching story since seeing you on Oprah. I’m a RN who works with patients who have mental illness. It is so amazingly ignorant of our society, that if you can’t see it, it isn’t real. I wanted to ask you a question. You seem to have some of the best Doctors working with Jani, so surely they have looked at every possible treatment. Have they ever considered ECT? To my knowledge the youngest patient we have done is 16 years old. We often treat patients with schizophrenia and schizo-affective disorder. Of course it doesn’t ‘cure’ the disease. But it significantly “quiets” the delusions and hallucinations. One patient who spoke to me about it when he was getting better, explained it that when he first awoke in the morning, voices were screaming at him to hurt himself. If he didn’t comply they would get louder and louder in his ear, until he obliged. After ECT, he still heard them, but was able to say no and they didn’t scream as loud. It was heartbreaking to listen to this man teeter on normalcy and being aware of the world he was trapped in. I realize this is a controversial treatment, but it is much more mainstream now than people realize. The procedure has been refined very well. Anyway, just a question from another one of your readers who admire your strength and hope life will give you more joyful moments with your family.
    Jackie

    Note from Michael: Hi Jackie. No ECT has not been considered. To be honest, I would have gone there two years ago when it seemed like Jani was getting worse and worse and was not responding to medication, but the medications she is on now have stabilized her relatively enough so she can enjoy life so there isn’t a need to consider other options at this point.

  33. Hi again Michael. Thank you so much for your response to my questions.

    “Note from Michael: Yes, lithium did and can cause diarrhea. The reason I call the current situation a “tactile hallucination” as opposed to anxiety about something that happened in the past is that she actuallY FEELS it happening RIGHT NOW when it is not.

    Second question: Of course her doctor was consulted, on both the thorazine increase (which is only as needed) and the Benadryl (which is also only as needed). Because of the fact that Jani takes Clozaril, she must, under the law, get a CBC and Chem panel taken every two weeks, and metabolic and endocrine panel about once a month, for precisely the purpose of making sure any of the medications are not causing any damage. So, at least in Jani’s case, she is EXTREMELY closely watched for even the slightest sign that the medications might be causing damage.

    I think you had other questions but I will get to them later. Got to get back to Jani now.”

    I am still hoping that you will answer my other questions, but first I have a new question for you… Have you ever been stung by a wasp Michael? Most people who have been stung by a wasp know that it is painful and that it will swell up and in some cases cause a severe allergic reaction. So the next time they see a wasp or anything resembling a wasp coming at them or maybe just something flying in their peripheral vision, most people will react by either moving quickly out of the way, swatting… you get the idea. Are these people halucinating too? Would you say they were having a tactile halucination if a piece of their hair brushed them the wrong way and it reminded them of the wasp sting? Would you say these people were psychotic for wanting to avoid areas where there might be other wasps?

    I ask this because in your blog, you say yourself that “you don’t know what normal is” and so I am hoping that you have questioned yourself about how you are perceiving Jani’s response to a very real worry that she will have bowel incontinence again from a drug she is still on. Is it possible that you are wrong about her having “tactile halucinations” and that all that is happening is she is worried about having another messy accident (getting stung by a wasp) again?

    My other questions were as follows:

    “Were you aware that benedryl has some side effects if taken in high doses? Did you know that hallucinations were a side effect? Do you know if there are any drug interactions with the drugs Jani is on (lithium, clozaril and thorazine)and the benedryl?

    Did you know that pediatricians consider giving children OTC medications that were not intended for their original use – child abuse? What do you think about all of those things?”

    I also wanted to ask why in the initial blog you say “There have been times when I dosed Jani with Benadryl to knock her out…
    By the way, we are not talking children’s Benadryl. We are talking the adult dose. 25 mg per pill.” You also say it is harmless but the contrary can be easily seen by searching for benedryl side effects and overdose. In your response to me, you say you give it to her “as needed”. can you give us all an estimation of how often “as needed” is?

    Thanks again for reading and answering all of my questions. Those of us with mentally ill children look to you and Susan as sort of trailblazers in this area. Many of us take your advice and experience to heart. I want to be sure that these methods are completely safe for my kids with no long term effects. Of course I consult my childs doctors but as you mentioned on facebook, many of the doctors, like your pediatrician for instance, don’t even know what these drugs can do (like the lithium causing the loose stool). So your advice over the “corrupt mental health system” is greatly appreciated. Again, looking forward to your thorough response because I know that you have the intelligence to answer.

    Note from Michael: First, of all, I am well aware of your position on use of medications. I am not stupid. It comes through loud as a bell on your comments. Nonetheless, I will answer but please understand that I do not have time to deal with anti-medication people, vainly trying to explain why they are needed, when I have so many other families who really do need help.

    Your “wasp” analogy is a good one but I am going to change it a bit. In Jani’s case, she isn’t afraid of the wasp. She FEELS the wasp stinging or her. That is a tactile hallucination, not a reaction to something that happened in the past.

    As for Benadryl, any drug in high enough doses can be dangerous. But we are talking about children that can take huge doses of anti-psychotics that would knock us “neurotypicals” out into a coma. So these medications knock us out but don’t knock them out. So higher doses are required.

    I have never seen any studies connecting Benadryl to hallucinations. I know your crowd tends to make claims but never produce evidence to support such a claim. It is a sedative. The more you take, the more it knocks you out.

    No, Benadryl has no interactions with lithium or thorazine. In fact, it counteracts extra-pyramidal symptoms associated with long term use of these medications.

    Yes, psychiatrists prescribe medications off label. They don’t do it just for the hell of it. They don’t based on studies that have shown the drug has some success against the symptoms and they do it because they are desperate to find a way to help the child. When a child is hurting himself or herself, you can’t wait for the FDA to approve a drug for all uses (which can take years). It is hardly child abuse (which gives away your position). It is like trying new forms of chemotherapy in a desperate attempt to check the growth of a tumor.

    That is all I can answer. I have a family to raise and do not have time to keep going back and forth on the issue of medication.

  34. Confused
    How is it that the comment by “Charmaine” asking about how much you needed to cover the rent was answered by a note from “Charmaine,” but was actually you answering her?

    Note from Michael: A mistake on my part. I meant to write “A note from Michael: Hi Charmaine…”

    Don’t exactly have a huge amount of time to respond to comments.

  35. oh God
    karen, are you serious?

    What is so hard to understand here? She is NOT afraid she is GOING to have an accident. She is horrified because she believes she is CURRENTLY HAVING AN ACCIDENT.

    So, she isn’t swatting away a wasp (how the hell did you pull that out of your ass? Swatting at a wasp being hallucinating? When did Michael ever say anything close to that?) She is basically asking her dad to pull the wasp stinger out of her arm, because she can feel it there. But there is no stinger in her arm at all. If she was simply afraid, she’d be asking her dad to prevent the wasp from stinging her. Not make it stop.

    Understand? Really, how many times do you need him to explain this?

    And as for your Benadryl thing, have you ever taken enough to hallucinate? I have. Trust me Darling, Jani is NOT having some drugged up hallucinations. Is that the new tactic against this family? Are we going to say that the ENTIRE mental illness thing is a fraud, and she has just being overdosing on allergy medicine her entire life?

  36. I want to tell Miss and Michael a story (miss to prove a point and Michael because if you haven’t heard it before you might find it interesting). It’s about Elli Perkins and her son Jeremy. When Jeremy was 24 he began to show symptoms of schizophrenia. His mom Elli was a scientologist and believed that psychiatry was an evil practice so she would not allow her son to be treated with medication. Jeremy was once committed but his mother had him released into her care. She took him to alternative medicine doctors that the church of Scientology approved of. The doctor he saw said his mental health problem was caused by digestive problems and he needed a strict course of vitamins to treat it. Jeremy continued to get worse though and he started to believe that the vitamins she was giving him were actually poison. When he started to become aggressive it was recommended that he be given housework that would tire him out. When he was 28 he was going to be sent to live with a family friend his mom told him to take a shower. After his shower he said that he tried to slit his wrists and when that didn’t work he went and stabbed his mom to death. He stabbed her 77 times and tried to cut out her eye because he thought it was evil. After he was arrested he was placed in the care of the state and put on medication. He told his lawyer that had he been on the medication earlier he never would have done what he did. Jeremy was found not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect. He now lives in a state hospital.

    The anti-psychiatry crowd likes to believe that its psychiatry that is wrong and evil but then there are stories like these where individuals could of been helped but weren’t. The person in charge of this young man’s care ignored what modern medicine told her was proven to work and look what happened. I’m not saying she deserved to die I’m saying this is something that never should of happened.

    Also Miss I find it hard to believe that psychiatric drugs are responsible for your friends heart attacks and strokes. You’d have to prove to me that they weren’t smokers, overweight or avid fast food eaters. Most things like anti-psychotics cause your blood pressure to lower not increase and lower blood pressure is not something associated with those conditions.

  37. Not much
    Michael,
    I wish I could help more. I don’t know what it’s like to be in your situation with Jani but I do know the awful, all encompassing, dark cloud of fear about not being able to pay rent. So I will give what I can to you. Measly it is, but I am working with the thought that “every little bit helps.”
    Whether you want to be or not, you are in my prayers. I pray for all children suffering from mental illness. I am glad that someone is giving them the voice they so terribly need.

    Note from Michael: Thank you, Cristin, particularly for the last sentence. That is what I try to be. I don’t always live up to it but I am trying.

  38. kickstarter?
    Hi Michael,
    I was thinking maybe you could start a Kickstarter to fund writing the rest of your book. I know it’s a little counter-intuitive, since you really need the money for your family, but crowd-sourcing the rent would make writing your book easier, and maybe the LA times and the discovery channel could help direct internet traffic to your cause. That way maybe you could raise more money at once.
    I’m sorry I don’t have much to donate, and I know you must constantly get well-meaning suggestions. I hope this month works itself out.
    http://www.kickstarter.com

    Note from Michael: Actually, Kickstarter has been brought up to me before as a means of raising funds to help other families with mentally ill/spectrum children. I like the idea. I just haven’t been able to get to it yet. The book takes up all my nights and Jani and Bodhi take up all my days. If somebody else wanted to set it up that would be great.

  39. Hi Micheal I only have a minute but would like to know where you are on your donations. Are you guys close to making the rent? I am about to donate. Can’t give much but I hope the little bit helps 🙂

    Note from Michael: Hi Melissa. We got your donation, thank you. As of early in the morning of the 6th (when I am writing this) we are still about $400-$500 short. Jani’s apartment has been paid. Only Bodhi’s needs to be paid. The “three day pay or quit” notice hasn’t come yet but I expect it will tomorrow. That being said, I have been surprised and humbled by how much support has come in. It was more than I expected, given how tough it is for everybody out there. It’s just not quite enough. I am still hopeful we can raise the last few hundred in the next couple of days. I hope.

  40. I had a counslor that said bipolar and schizophrenia was just a faked illness so they could get away with their behavior but I know better. I was diagnosed at 17 with bipolar and put me on risperidone. been on for 2 years. I got really bad before

    Note from Michael: Not sure how anyone can believe that any mental illness can be “faked,” even though I know there are plenty of people who do believe that. But why would someone want to fake it “for attention” when the attention is, sadly, rarely positive?

  41. Naysayers
    I am trying to figure out what people like “Miss” must think of you. Either it’s that you’re stupid or evil. Assuming you are stupid and cannot possibly understand what the medications are doing to Jani, then you must have someone else writing your blog and manning the Facebook page, because no one could be so vapid and manage to log onto a computer. If you were evil, then why wouldn’t you have killed your children by now? On the contrary, you have saved both of your children from harm on multiple occasions.

    So let’s see, you aren’t a moron and you aren’t the spawn of satan…but that must mean you are an educated parent who is trying his best to care for his children!

    Honestly, these people who think they understand medications better than doctors just prove that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

    Good luck Michael. No matter what happens you have your book on the horizon. March is a while away, but it is close enough to hold onto as a piece of hope.

    Note from Michael: Well, based on what I read on some of their youtube channels, the answer is they think I am evil. Frankly, they give me far more credit than I deserve. If they think I did all of this for attention or “fame” or “money” (there are FAR easier ways to achieve all three than make up something which, sadly, cannot be made up), then they must consider me some kind of “Dr. Moriarty” type evil genius. I find it funny that a handful of people (and it is just a small handful) spend so much time and energy focused on me, especially when all it does is drive up my website traffic. So actually all they are doing is bringing more people to this site. What I am proud of, however, is that they really fear the impact that I have on other parents (because they believe medications are evil and these diseases don’t exist). So I take that to mean I am having some positive effect if they really fear me that much. Jani’s story is getting to people they really don’t want it to get to. Sadly, we actually in general want the same thing. We both want dignified care and treatment of those with mental illness. If they could just get past their stringent anti-drug position (none of us parents like giving our children these drugs. We do it because WE HAVE SEEN WHAT THEY ARE LIKE WITHOUT THEM, which they refuse to accept. Apparently to them, a child hurting themselves or committing suicide is not as bad as the big, bad pharmaceuticals.

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