chapter  7
16 Pages

THE FAMILY AFFECTED BY DEPRESSIVE ILLNESS IN ONE OR BOTH PARENTS

In the previous section I looked at some of the factors, in both parents and children, that make for the disruption of family life. I propose to follow up this general theme in the next three sections, by considering the disintegration of the family that may be brought about by psychiatric illness. When we are called upon to help in situations where there is evidence of failure in the family dynamics, we seek to understand the factors underlying the difficulties with which we are presented, in order that our help may be of the most appropriate kind. We are not concerned with making moral judgements in these matters; nor am I thinking, in this context, in terms of the problem of economic strain – which in any case is rarely found to be the sole source of stress.