DOES PARENTAL ABUSE CAUSE MENTAL ILLNESS?

  Do you have to have been abused by your parents to suffer from mental illness? Mental illness is a sickness that does not choose its victims from a category. Anyone can suffer from this illness. You can have loving parents, grow up happily and have a healthy lifestyle, and still get sick. Mental illness does not discriminate; it just strikes whomever and whenever it wants to.

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   Although abuse can be a contributing factor to mental illness it is not the only cause. Research suggests that there are multiple, linking causes to mental illness. Some of those can be genetics, environment, and lifestyle influence. Biochemical processes and circuits and basic brain structure may play a role, too. – See more at: https://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-Conditions#sthash.YLGc9sBv.dpuf. In other words, mental illness can be inherited, can be brought on by abuse or trauma, or it could be a chemical imbalance in your brain or other factors within your life like divorce, loss of job, and so on.

   I had very loving parents. My mom stayed home and took care of us kids while my dad worked long hours at the family garage. They both gave my siblings and me plenty of love and never hurt us in any way. My mom is like a best friend to me, yet I have mental illness, and so does my sister. My grandmother on my mom’s side had mental illness, and I was abused by my classmates and teachers. These factors, along with a chemical imbalance in my brain, are believed to be the causes of my illness. My sister has never been properly diagnosed.

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   My parents supported me throughout school, they believed in me and showed me their love daily. I’m not saying my parents were perfect and there were never any problems, but there was no form of abuse. While my parents told me I could do anything I wanted, my classmates told me I was a useless loser who would never amount to anything. Having a chemical imbalance in my brain and genes passed on through the family, along with the abuse made me susceptible to mental illness.

   Some people are abused and never suffer from mental illness. They had the strength within them to overcome the damage and live a strong healthy life. Other people have healthy lives and find themselves falling down the dark hole. Why is that? Researches have many theories as to why one person has mental illness and another doesn’t. I believe that mental illness is a problem in the brain and the factors of life increase the severity of the illness. The abuse I faced contributed to my illness and made me too weak to fight back, but was not the sole cause of my sickness.

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   Everyone faces trials and tribulations, but not everyone has mental illness. Mental illness is a sickness of the mind. Even people with normal lives can become sick. The best researchers can’t explain why one person suffers and another one doesn’t. Just like we cannot explain why a person gets cancer and another one doesn’t.

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   I believe the reason I struggle with my mental illness is to use it to reach out to others and teach others. What caused my illness isn’t important, but the fact I took control of it and am using it to teach and help others means a lot more. I still have a strong relationship with my parents and I credit part of my recovery process to my mom’s determination to help me. This helps me shine in the light.

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