NAMI Family to Family Classes: support for family members of people with serious mental illness

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NAMI Fairfield Family to Family Class Registration Open

Registration is open for the upcoming NAMI Fairfield Family-to-Family Education Program, specifically for family members of persons diagnosed with serious mental illness. This free twelve-week course will begin on Monday, February 11 and will be held on Mondays from 6:30-9:00 pm in the Eliot Room Library, First Church Congregational, 148 Beach Road, Fairfield.

Here are some frequently asked questions and answers:

What are the major mental illnesses and how can I get a clear diagnosis for my relative? The course provides current information, including diagnostic criteria, for schizophrenia, major depression, bipolar disorder, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, borderline personality disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder.

What are the best treatments now available for my relative? The course presents current research related to the biology of brain disorders and the evidence-based, most effective treatments to promote recovery.

What are all these medications for? The course provides up-to-date information about medications, side effects, and strategies for medication adherence.

How can my relative and I communicate better? The course teaches empathy through understanding the subjective, lived experience of a person with mental illness, and includes special workshops for problem solving, listening, and communication techniques.

What do I do if there is a crisis? The course teaches strategies for handling crises and relapse.

What local services in my community am I missing out on?  The course provides guidance on locating appropriate supports and services within the community and information on advocacy initiatives designed to improve and expand services.

How do I take care of myself in all of this?  The course includes a focus on care for the caregiver:  coping with worry, stress and emotional overload. 

NAMI is the National Alliance on Mental Illness. It is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to improving the lives of persons living with serious mental illness and their families.

The course will be run by trained family members who have experience living with a loved one with mental illness. Class size is limited so pre-registration is important. For more information or to register please call Barbara at 203-984-8251.


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