“Comment,” Ensign, Mar. 1997, 80


Protecting Children

“Mending Our Marriage” (Oct. 1996) provides wonderful spiritual and practical suggestions for saving troubled relationships. However, it is important to note that most localities have strict laws governing the protection of children from abuse and neglect. Though the topic of protecting children was beyond the scope of the reports you published, parents struggling to maintain their marriage must be sure that children are safeguarded from such experiences as witnessing drunken rages, being verbally abused by a depressed parent, or having access to pornography.

Gayle B. Adams
Licensed clinical social worker
Salt Lake City, Utah

On Mental Illness

Eight years ago, I was diagnosed as having a mental illness. My initial diagnosis was clinical depression. That diagnosis has changed several times through the years, but my doctors and therapists have finally agreed that I suffer from schizoaffective disorder, involving both thought and mood disorders.

Many times I have knelt in prayer, shedding tears and asking for forgiveness for the sins that were causing me so much pain. Now I can see that though, like everyone, I have sinned, this pain is caused by a real illness.

Mental illness is one of the most misunderstood maladies of all time. People who are not mentally ill sometimes look upon those who suffer from mental illness as being “wacko” or perpetrators of horrible crimes. Actually, only a tiny percentage of those who are severely mentally ill actually harm anyone except themselves. They feel alienated from society and are filled with hopelessness, helplessness, and loneliness. I have learned that the mentally ill are not menaces to society; they are simply in need of help and support from their families, friends, and Church members.

My struggle with mental illness will probably never end in this life, but I am filled with gratitude to my Heavenly Father for letting me feel emotions and undergo trials of my faith.

Name Withheld