My name is Candace I am 27 years old, and battle with schizoaffective disorder and depression every day. My life changed when I was 9, but my adoptive mother believes the problem could have started much earlier as early as 5 years old. I started showing signs of anger, and aggression. Then slowly other signs showed themselves. For example one night I told my mom I was hearing voices in my head, and saw things. My mom didn’t know what to say or do. After much thought and struggle gathering more information she took me to a psychiatrist, and he diagnosed me with schizophrenia, and put me on a couple of antipsychotics one of which caused me to gain weight to the point of being obese.
My mom took me back to the psychiatrist regularly, and he and my parents struggled trying to find the right combination of medication that would work for me, and not cause me other health problems. As I got older I was put in a couple of mental health hospitals when medication seemed not to help. At the age of 20 I met the man of my dreams, and got married. At the age of 22 I was re-diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder and depression and put on a whole new cocktail of medication. Through many tries me my hubby, and my new psychiatrist have found the combination of medication that works for me. I have also found NAMI in my town. I have taken Peer-to-Peer, and taught it, I walk in the NAMIWalk almost every year, I visit the HOPE Center. All of these things have helped me endlessly If not for NAMI and all of their outlets in my small town, I would have never known I am not alone.
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When you become a member of NAMI, you become part of America's largest grassroots organization dedicated to improving the lives of persons living with serious mental illness. And now you can join online