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In Our Own Voice

Craig's Parents

MarthaMartha: He withdrew from his family. He withdrew from his friends. He couldn't work. He couldn't study.

John : He took gradually lower and lower skilled jobs over the years, over a number of years.

Martha: And we gave him freedom to do all of that, didn't realize how distressed he was until the last six months and then right before his really psychotic break for about six months we really got worried about him. And he was so withdrawn and he started having thoughts and behavior that was bizarre.

Craig's FamilyWe realized he was ill. We were trying to get help to get him into treatment but he was paranoid so we could not do that. And we finally did get him home and when he got here we realized that he was psychotic. We were unfortunately delayed. If we had at that time maybe taken him right away to the hospital, if we'd been able to accomplish that, it might have saved some trouble. But not realizing what was going to be in the future, he took off with the car and ended up in Montana.

So, in order for us to get him into custody, into treatment we had to make up the charge of having stolen our car and that was how he got arrested and put in the jail in Montana.

John : …he's bright but he's unable to function. He can't study. He can't do anything serious like he used to be able to. He used to have a lot of energy to do things but he doesn't now.

…for a while after he came out of the mental hospital and kept improving I was hoping he would be able to finish his degree and get a somewhat more skilled job than food handler. Now, I don't know. I hope we can keep him from having more relapses and we just have to wait and see.

Martha: Right now I cannot imagine how he will manage on his own because he will go off his medications and become quite ill again, very psychotic, unable to take care of himself. So that's why we have worked with our children to try to get them involved for when we die, that there's somebody supervising him.

I hope that he will become a functional schizophrenic. That would be the proudest thing I could imagine right now, is that he can not only be able to work, but some how express all this extraordinary experience that he has had in a way that is useful and that other people can understand. …Somehow I believe that this awful tragedy is going to have a good come out of it.