"This is the most comprehensive book to-date about the role that families play in caring for adults with mental illness. Unique to this volume is an examination of caregiving roles from an historical perspective as well as from the perspective of various caregiving relationships--parents, adult children, and siblings. Of special importance is Dr. Lefley's delineation of the nature of caregiving throughout the life cycle of the family." Agnes B. Hatfield, Ph.D., University of Maryland at College Park "I find Harriet Lefley's new book Family Caregiving in Mental Illness to be extremely thoughtful and comprehensive. It is all here--family theories and research, caregiving in the context of changes in the family life cycle, coping strategies, cross-cultural issues, advocacy, patient rights, and mental health policy. Dr. Lefley is the expert of experts when it comes to family caregiving in serious mental illness. The book is very readable and accessible to family members, social workers, and policymakers. It represents another big step in Dr. Lefley's courageous effort to bring family issues to public attention." --Richard Tessler, Ph.D. University of Massachusetts Deinstitutionalization suddenly catapults family members into being the primary caregivers for functionally impaired adults who are diagnosed with mental illness. This role as caregiver is one that family members are untrained and unprepared for. In Family Caregiving in Mental Illness, author Harriet Lefley explores the experiences of those giving care for adults with mental illness. She thoughtfully examines the unique characteristics and conceptual models related to mental illness and then surveys the experience of mentalillness in the context of the family life cycle and developmental stages of the illness. Family burden, including social stigma; treatment barriers; iatrogenic stress; and the relationship between the patient and caregiver are appraised while the influence on other family members is highlighted. The stages of familial response, specific types of coping strategies, and professional and nonclinical services for families are reviewed, along with positive affects on the family's welfare. Finally, cultural factors affecting family caregiving are discussed in the international context and in terms of ethnic differences within the United States. Also considered are the impact of advocacy movements on caregivers, the legal and ethical barriers to care, alternative models to family caregiving, and the maintenance and growth of consumer-run services. All professionals working with persons with mental illness as well as researchers and students in this area will find Family Caregiving in Mental Illness illuminating and valuable.