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I Am Not Sick I Don't Need Help: How to Help Someone with Mental Illness Accept Treatment
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I Am Not Sick I Don't Need Help: How to Help Someone with Mental Illness Accept Treatment

4.37 of 5 stars 4.37  ·  rating details  ·  200 ratings  ·  30 reviews
In this updated edition of Dr. Amador's best selling book, you will learn why so many people with serious mental illness are in "denial" and refuse treatment.

Whether you are a family member, friend, or therapist, you will find hope in what the new research reveals and learn a step-by-step plan that shows you how to help someone with mental illness accept treatment.

Paperback, 253 pages
Published January 1st 2012 by Vida Press (first published June 2000)
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If you are trying to interact with someone you love with mania/delusions/paranoia, this is a very valuable resource. It's a very straightforward read, pitched at a level that includes those who don't just want a how-to kind of book, but also want to know a little about the scientific research that led to the methods promoted.

The central idea is that many who are mentally ill do not believe there is anything wrong and because of this don't see a need to take the medication they need to live thei
Ah, such high hopes for this book - and after a promising beginning, it fell flat for me.

The only things of interest:

That a mentally ill person's conception/perception of themselves is stranded in time and therefore is cut off from important new information - especially when that information cannot fit - so they can't help but ignore or explain away any evidence that contradicts their self-concept.

That there can be pockets of unawareness and poor insight into their own symptoms and condition. P
Fran Williams
If you have a loved one (or even just an acquaintance) with mental illness it is normal to tfeel that you have to try to talk them into believing they are sick. Dr. Amador gives you first-hand advice on how to respond to this person....what to say/do and more importantly what NOT to say/do to get this person the help they need.
This book has helped me regain the relationship with my brother which I thought I would never have again. Understanding the principles of this book gave me insight into th
Simonetta Carr
Good insights on how to deal with people with serious mental illness. I have followed some portions step by step. It's a good initial and overall encouraging book to help people outside the medical profession to understand the typical lack of insight that comes with some mental illnesses and a way to approach it. Between the chapter on commitment (to an institution) and the resolution there is an obvious gap that can be filled with months or even years of frustration and uncertainty, but thankfu ...more
Very helpful. A bit repetitive for me.
Amador's little book here is a terrific resource for anyone who would like to see a friend or loved one get the help they seem to need. His format is clear, grounded in solid experience and knowledge. Amador explains anosognosia, the condition of lacking insight into one's own mental disorder. His LEAP method is concrete and well-explained, even if sometimes difficult to put into practice. When someone needs mental health treatment and refuses it, the least effective strategies are sadly the one ...more
My mother-in-law brought this book over for my husband to read. His oldest sister just had another breakdown/psychotic episode and my mother-in-law is trying to fix everything by doing as much research as she can. It makes her feel like she doing something.

Amador has a brother with schizophrenia and has a PhD in psychology - he's very well versed in dealing with mental illness. The book gives great suggestions about how to help someone living with mental illness. There are dialogues, and journal
Amador offers here an extremely useful and humane approach to lack of insight in mental illnesses, particularly schizophrenia. Of course, if you stretch it, it can be used with any type of problem associated with a lack of insight, even non-mental problems.

Anyway, Amador does a really great job in explaining the difference between lack of insight and stubbornness and highlighting the fact that the main cause of treatment noncompliance, at least in the case of schizophrenia, is more often the for
Luis Ibanez
Excellent book.

Concise and practical advice on how to manage interactions with people with mental illness.

The author shares the practice of the LEAP method, from both a personal perspective, and a professional perspective.

A must read, for anyone who is struggling with the challenges of interacting with a mentally ill person.
Kathryn Sabellico
VERY GOOD advice. Someone I barely knew recommended it - gave it to me to read - and it's very helpful! Thank you! Liked this and written for everyone who wants to help someone they love that is difficult to deal with.
Living with or just trying to help a psychotic relative can be frightening and frustrating to say the least. Sometimes their behavior is just confusing and sometimes it becomes dangerous. As a psychologist with a schizophrenic brother, Dr. Amador shows family and friends that they are not alone in their experience. His book uses plain English and actual case files to help demystify bizarre behaviors and show why it's not simply stubbornness or denial that prevents them from seeking help. More im ...more
Gianna Harty
I attended the LEAP training that goes along with this book. I had learned quite a bit of the techniques described here in my undergrad work and my work experience,but it was nice to read this and realize that what I had been thinking of manipulation all these years is actually a good method for working with SMI! The only reason I didn't give this book 5 stars is I got a bit frustrated with the writing; that is just my Lit background, though. This book is informative and helpful for anyone, prof ...more
This is an excellent book that reads as a handbook on how to help your mentally ill friend or family member. The author is a doctor who has a brother with schizophrenia. He was able to help his brother and patients better after studying and helping patients over the years. It helped me to realize that mental illness is not just a behaviour issue. There is very little differences between receiving head trauma from a car accident and a psychotic break. The person's behavior is result of actual che ...more
Sep 22, 2007 Angie rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: therapists, family members of mentally ill
This is an incredible book, one of my favorites dealing with schizophrenia. You could compare this to the very well known "How to talk so kids will listen and listen so kids will talk", but for mentally ill patients. A very good reminder mentally ill patients are still people with their own minds. Talk to them, not at them, and you'll get much better response.

It's already an unsurmountable task trying to communicate with unmedicated patients or family members. This book makes it a little less da
Liane Manso
This book has changed the way I interact with a family member (if you know me well you know who I mean). We have gone from fighting and yelling to understanding, listening, and caring about what the other has to say. I can say I truly hear her now and that by taking the time to listen and respect her she has begun to do the same with me. So, this book truly changed my life.
An invaluable book for anyone dealing with a loved one with severe mental illness who refuses treatment, or that they have a problem to begin with. Gave me real insight and much more empathy for the pain and suffering my loved one has been living with and not having control over for so long. Highly recommended.
L -- Listen reflectively to delusions, anosognosia, desires; Delay opinion, then 3 A's: apologize, acknowledge fallibility; agree (that we can disagree)

E -- Empathize & normalize

A -- Agree (disadvantages and advantages of treatment)(to disagree)

P -- Partner on goals you both agree on
This is a must read for anyone with friends or family members living with mental illness. Xavier Amador gives some great advice and tools into how to help those who have poor insight into their illness. He also offers good tools and advice on ways to develop good communication skills and trust.
Good book for anyone with friends or family who suffer from mental illness. It's pretty impossible to convince a person to take meds or get help when their perception is that they are not sick. This book gives an approach for dealing with this situation.
The substance was amazing. I was, however, repeatedly distracted by the poor job that someone did editing this book. I hope this is corrected in later editions.

Even with the numerous typographical errors, I will reread this book many times.
This book has helped me to understand the condition of someone diagnosed with schizophrenia or depression. It helps me how to deal with the situation and offer my help to those affected especially to whom I am closed to.
This book was an amazing resource for any family member or clinician dealing with someone with a serious chronic mental illness who is resistant to help or to taking their meds. I'd give more stars if I could!
Melissa Abercrombie
I wished I'd been ready for this book a long time ago in my journey with my mother, who suffers from schizophrenia. A must read for anyone trying to reach out to a loved one struggling with mental illness.
Invaluable for offering insight, empathy, and strategies to families coping with a member's mental illness. A gift of clarity at precisely the perfect time, I consider this book a saving grace.
Interesting approach to dealing with mental illness, most particularly those individuals who demonstrate lack of awareness of their own condition, and a reluctance to engage in treatment.
Carol Williams
helpful and thought provoking and did I say helpful...more words are seemingly required for this book, but I cannot expound today.
Very useful. Author obviously has a lot of experience and knows his stuff well. Highly recommended for family members of the patients.
Sep 30, 2008 Kate rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: friends or family members of persons with mental illness
I read this book last summer for a book club type of group at work (I was working as a case manager for adults with mental illness).
A wonderful read for those helping a loved one suffering from mental illness.
Ed Schwartz
This book is convincing, practical, and well written.
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“I don’t think there’s anything else we can do for him as long as he’s in denial. No one’s going to convince him that he’s sick.” 0 likes
“suicide is a very serious problem in both depression and schizophrenia as estimates are that as many as one out of every ten persons with schizophrenia will take his life.” 0 likes
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