October 29, 2007

Teen With Schizophrenia Spreads Word About Mental Illness

John Hill, a 19-year-old teenager from Idaho, is on a mission to spread the word and raise awareness about mental illness. Hill suffers from schizophrenia and was diagnosed at 17. His first symptoms were auditory hallucinations and eventually he experienced what he describes as "severe paranoia." Initially, not knowing what to do, Hill kept his symptoms a secret, but eventually broke down and told his mother. Fortunately, she was able to get him the help he needed.

Now he takes medication and attends regular support groups. And although Hill still sometimes suffers from paranoia, he's made it a priority to inform others about mental illness. At 19, "Hill serves as a member on the Youth Suicide Prevention Council and the Idaho State Planning Council for Children’s and Adult Mental Health, both two-year, governor-appointed positions. He is involved with the Idaho Youth Council where he speaks in front of professionals about how disabilities affect young people’s lives. He also sits on the Canyon/Owyhee Children’s Wellness Council, helping families and participating in community service projects." Hill uses his personal story in dealing with schizophrenia to help others. He talks about his symptoms, recovery and goal of having a productive life despite suffering from schizophrenia. He says of mental illness, "it’s not a disability, it’s a roadblock. I just have to drive around it."

Full Story: Idaho-Press Tribune, Homedale teen raises awareness of mental health


I just wished I would have found this sooner. my son is 18 he also is par. sczi. and was having a really hard time . hospitals for the last year on and off and sept. 13 2007 he jumped in front of a truck and died. now I was trying hard to ddo what i could for him.what can Iido now with th understaning i know so no one else will be lost like I have been thanks

Posted by: tina at October 30, 2007 06:24 AM

I think what he is doing is great my dad is schizophrenia and for the past 10 years I've had to hide from him because my mom is afraid he'll hurt me. I'm now 19 and I don't know what to do i love my dad and miss him but its hard. I just wish could talk to some one who understands.

Posted by: Robin at October 30, 2007 06:46 AM

Sorry to hear that Tina.....This guy is only 19 and is already a mental health advocate and campaigner..good luck to him

Posted by: Salty Davis at October 31, 2007 02:01 PM

I sorry about your loss Robin.I know people don't really understand until they see it for themselves.

Posted by: J D at November 1, 2007 12:51 PM

I meant Tina...I'm sorry.

Posted by: J D at November 1, 2007 12:58 PM

I think it's great that you can go in front of people and talk about your illness. I have been ill since I was a child and am still shy about my illness. Good luck to you.

Posted by: Karen J at February 11, 2008 01:22 PM

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