Recordings from the Family Conference

Spotlight On Mental Health

kleeHere are the recordings from the 8th Annual Family Conference – thanks, BC Schizophrenia Society, for posting them!

I have to say that my research-happy brain really enjoyed Mahesh Menon’s presentation on biological and psychosocial interventions in schizophrenia. It was fascinating, AND it made sense! What a great combination. I found what he said about metacognitive therapy for psychosis particularly interesting. Btw, there is a great article about “How Metacognitive Therapy Helped Me” on our sister site, Peer Support & On Our Way.   To be honest, I cannot remember what Mahesh Menon said about family involvement, or if he mentioned it at all, but of course it stands to reason that close relationships can help a person reorient to agreed-upon reality.  In the article I just mentioned, Sandra Yuen MacKay gives a small demonstration of how metacognitive therapy works:

For example, if I have a foreign thought, I may jump to the conclusion that someone is sending me a telepathic message or controlling my mind, which may make me anxious. Instead, if I retrain my thinking and realize it is a symptom of my illness or has another explanation, I am better able to dismiss it through mindfulness or by distracting myself.

A friend or family member can be a great help with this: They can say, for example

Is it possible that this is your illness speaking?
Let’s think of a few other explanations of this.
Let’s go for a walk!
Would you like to sit down and meditate together for a few minutes?

Without prior training via something like metacognitive therapy, a person might take exception to a friend or family saying this. But having gone through the training, it’s possible that these words are accepted as support rather than interference.