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I Think I Have A Mental Illness

Question:

My family has a history of mental illness,such as, schizophrenia, morbid jealousy and paranoia. I fear that I too have an illness. For the past number of months I have changed dramatically. I am constantly questioning my partner, I am constantly shouting and screaming at her, and I am being verbally abusive. I get into an uncontrollable rage and I fear that I may hurt someone or myself. This is a day to day occurence. My family is worried for my and my partner’s safety. I really don’t know what to do.

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  • Dr. Schwartz responds to questions about psychotherapy and mental health problems, from the perspective of his training in clinical psychology.
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Answer:

There are many factors that can cause a mental illness. It is often a combination of genetic, physiolgical, social and psychological probems that are at work. The fact that many members of your family suffer from these illnesses puts you at a higher risk for depression, personality disorder bipolar disorder or one of the psychoses.

The only way to uncover what is behind your symptoms is to see either a psychiatrist or licensed clinical psychologist who can then do a diagnosis followed by a correct clinical procedure. This can inlcude medication, psychotherapy or, most likely, a combination of both.

I think it’s really a good thing that you recognize this problem and are asking about help. In fact, it is a good thing that you fear that you might hurt someone. Oftentimes, it takes this kind of fear and worry to motivate a person to seek help.

Do not hesitate, seek help now. The sooner you get help the sooner you will feel better. If need be, do a Google search for psychiatrist in your area.

Good Luck

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