A mental illness is a medical condition that distorts a person’s ability to think clear and provide normal daily functioning. Coping with the ordinary life issues has various difficulties in all cases of mental diseases. Serious mental disorders, like major depression, schizophrenia, post traumatic stress disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder affect family relations most. Thus, having a close relative with mental disorders, in most cases, causes constant high stress level, and depression (Zeanah, 2009). In fact, mental disorder of a close relative controls all major aspects of a family life. Daily habits and plans, as well as nutrition should be chosen, regarding mental illness condition. Therefore, every case of mental illness within the circle of close relatives has a various impact on every family member.
Major depression mostly is followed by the utter lack of interest for life. Seeing own relative in such condition, despite all efforts, can cause the constant depression state in all other family members as well. Due to some mental disorders, the mood and actions can be unpredictable, and this may change the whole family behave. It can be more unfavorable in general, or in some particular aspects. Thus, family members may have a negative look at having guests or new people inside of their house. Moreover, people with mental disorder presentations cannot be left alone, this person always needs to be in sight of one of the relatives. Therefore, such families have no opportunity to participate in all family outdoor activities together most of the time.
The Parental Mental Illness Impact on Children
Having one of parents with mental health problems always negatively affects children. The symptoms of mental disorders may suppress the parental ability to think and act clear towards own children. In the cases of parental major depression, they may show total absence of interest in their child’s some particular events, or become less emotionally involved in his or her life in general.
The impact of the father’s or mother’s mental disorder can be extraordinary. Usually, children have a less protective defense mental system, and, therefore, they may have emotional, behavioral, and social problems with a high possibility. The severity of a parent’s mental disorders appears in their ability to provide proper parental thoughts and actions.
As was said, children face different problems and issues having one of their parents affected by some serious mental disorder. In fact, they are in a vulnerable state both in the present time and in the future. Currently, a vulnerable position is determined by a parental inconsistent or abnormal behave towards own children, like aggressiveness or apathy demonstration. Every change in the father’s or mother’s attitude or behave reflects on their child’s actions or thoughts. Moreover, parental mental disorders have a great impact on future child’s life (Marini, & Stebnicki, 2012). Growing up in such unusual conditions always makes a contribution to achievement in the child’s personhood, and determines many key aspects of future life and the behavioral type. A person who faced the case of mental illness in own family may become negatively oriented in thoughts and have some level of chronic depression. On the other hand, a person who witnessed a serious mental illness can be inspired for finding new effective ways of that particular disorder treatment.
Also, one of the main threats for having a parent or both parents with mental illness is the high possibility of having the same mental disorder in the future. The reason for the mental disorder can be genetic (“Children of parents with mental illness”,2008). In this case, a person can be provided with the special treatment in the very childhood for not to aggravate it in the adulthood. On the other hand, a mental disease can be evolved due to the daily stress and depression causing a subconscious shift.
The Child’s Mental Illness Affects Family Members
Having a mentally sick child in the own family have a significant impact on all relatives and family members. Every parent’s nightmare is to have a sick child. Children with the severe cases of mental disorder always negatively affect their close relatives and parents at most. The adult defense mental system is more protective to serious consequences than the child’s one. However, the impact of mental illness can be the reason for a severe mental shift in a parent’s mind. The child’s mental disorder revelation brings changes in the lifestyle pattern of the whole family, which leads to the high stress level and constant depression. Common feelings of parents and siblings are frustration, helplessness, anger, and oppression (“Children's health”, 2012).
Also, having a child with some mental issues cause emotional and financial difficulties. Since parents and other relatives should not show their negative feelings in front of a child, they face constant emotion suppression that will affect them in the future. Besides, children with mental disorders need a special treatment in all aspects, and in most cases it leads to the higher consumption rate.
Taking into account all abovementioned, it is obvious that having even one family member with a mental disorder has a tremendous negative impact on all family members and causes certain levels of daily stress and depression. Every mental disease has a distinctive feature that defines the level of abnormality in daily behavior and the mood state. Moreover, the position in the family does not play a great role in the mental impact on other family members. Whether it is a mother, a father, a child, a sibling or another close relative having a serious mental issue, all other family members’ life needs to be prepared for providing a decent help and a proper daily support.