In case you’re getting impatient with the slow progress your relative may be demonstrating, I thought I’d share Chris’s experience taking courses. The ability to pay income tax (and, by my inference, to succeed at training courses) is almost the gold standard for recovery (in addition to getting along well within the family and the wider community) according to Doctor Abram Hoffer.
Here’s a long list of the courses Chris attempted, beginning at about age 21, a year after he was first hospitalized.
- Audited an art history course (managed to hang on mainly due to the heroic efforts of the professor to accommodate his behavior)
- Passed a political science semester course
- Quit another polysci course due to worsening symptoms
- Enrolled in a month long physics course and lived away from home – didn’t keep up with assignments and, obviously, failed. Final grade about 5%, if I recall.
- Failed to submit final work for a communications course
- Took refresher math lessons with a tutor; too distracted to concentrate
- Enrolled in a three-week French course – quit about day 3. Too anxious.
- Took an online music theory certificate course for a semester – I think he passed. It was so long ago.
- Resumed piano lessons – didn’t practice much. Stopped the lessons.
- Enrolled in a three-week computer course. Passed first module
- Enrolled in second three-week computer module. Failed second module
- Enrolled in an intensive French course – passed
- Enrolled in the next level of the French course – passed
- Enrolled in a sound engineering certificate program for one year – not quite making the grade. Quit.
- Enrolled in online math course – in progress
- Resumed taking piano lessons – as of last week
If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t have encouraged Chris to become a student until he was much older and further into his recovery. Chris simply wasn’t ready until HE decided he wanted to do something more, which began around the age of 28 (course number 11 onwards). Getting there has been slow and unpredictable, but Chris has changed a lot and is finally seeing that he if wants to make something of his life, only he can do it.