It seems to that I get to sit by and watch as people I care about just descend, quite literally, into madness. One young person I know, whom I've known now for about five years, is severely bipolar and routinely stops taking his meds, abandons his general mental health care only to crash so profoundly that it leaves me wondering about attending his funeral one of these days. His latest horrifying misadventure involved multiple abdominal stab wounds and after three weeks in the hospital he appears to be recovering by hanging out in a place so bad and dangerous I don't even want to think about it any more. But he is not alone in his struggle. He may be the extreme end of what I see, but I see plenty along the same vein, sadly.
I really wonder what it is about the human mind that requires crashing before any progress can be made addressing mental health problems. And I wonder whether the entire process just sets up an endless cycle of denial-crash-treatment-brief recovery-denial-crash, ad infinitum. Add to that the overlay of trying to get mental health care for an unwilling adult and one is left with feelings of powerlessness in the fight to safeguard, or even just help, those you care about.
My great unanswered question for the day: How do we help those who don't want help but so desperately need help? I really want to believe there's some option, other than standing by and hoping that you can catch them when they come flying off the merry-go-round.