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A Story of My Mental Illness by
Daniel E. Compton
Saturday July 11, 1998

I was born Thursday February 9, 1961 at St. Mary's Hospital in Kansas
City, Missouri. I grew up in approx. 6 states including: Missouri,
Kansas, Colorado, Utah, Idaho, & Alaska. I don't know but my mom thinks
when I was born I had some brain damage either in birth or when I was
first hit by a car when I was about 2 years old in 1963 when we lived in
Independence, Missouri.

During the years as a child I had a behavioral emotional problem. I
teased other kids and called them names etc. I was also very compulsive
say at the age of 8-9 when I always wanted to wear the same shirt to
school every day. I always used to get into my dad's car that really
bothered him. As a 12 & 13 year old in 1973-1974, I always used to have
the habit of twisting my hair which always got me into trouble. Even as
a teenager say even to about age 15-16, I still teased kids but got over
that by about age 18. I must have had some kind of learning disability
as I did not do well in school for the most part. I did still graduate
from High School by the way. That was Friday May 25, 1979 in
Springville, Utah. I never really knew I had an illness till I came to
Alaska in the summer of 1981 in Ketchikan where I was going to Gateway
Mental Health Center for therapy my mom wanted me to be involved in. I
needed something done to work out a better life for me since I had
learning disabilities, and working disabilities from living at home in
Utah to age 20. When we were in Ketchikan in the summer of 1981 not
only did my mom get mental health services arranged for me but she also
got social services arranged.
So as of October 1981 when my mom left Ketchikan I came to Anchorage
that was worked out from social worker John Mason in Ketchikan. He
thought Anchorage would be a better place for me since the mental health
services were much more plentiful up here. I arrived in Anchorage to
stay temporarily at a boarding home of Anchorage Boarding Home run by
Marge Pappas that was till I was to go to a foster home. I did go to a
foster home 3 days later after I first came to Anchorage that was clear
out in Palmer. But I did not stay as I was not happy there and came
back to Anchorage to live at the boarding home. Before hand I was
seeing people at the Southcentral Annex that day Friday October 9, 1981
I saw a Jim McLaughlin and that sort of set up my mental health services
in Anchorage from the time I first came here from Ketchikan. I later
saw a Dr. David H. Williams who prescribed me medication Stelazine for
my anxiety, thought disorder, compulsiveness etc. I sure had side
effects from it for a while which included stiffness, blurry vision, dry
mouth, movements in my neck, pain in body etc. I started taking
Kemadrin to reduce the side effects. I was diagnosed with
chronic/residual schizophrenia. I lived at the Anchorage Boarding Home
for approx. 3 years when I became quite unhappy there and I wanted to
move on . moved to the TLC ( Transitional Living Center) where I lived
in house for 1 month then moved to Phase II for approx. almost 3 years
tell I moved to Seward for 2 years in 1991.I was mostly getting treated
at TLC rather than southcentral Counseling for my schizophrenia for
those 3 years from 1988 -1991. Then when I moved to Seward in March
1991, I went through the Seward Life Action Council (SLAC) program and
enjoyed living in Seward partly most of the time but got really really
homesick to move back to Anchorage so I moved back to Anchorage in March
1993 and have been living here again ever since. I lived with my friend
Bernie for a while for 6 months till I finally got my own place in
September 1993 over in Mountain View lived there till I got scared of
all the trouble that happened in Mountain view for nearly the next 3
years I finally moved over here to 3501 East 42nd Ave. Apt. #218 in June
1996. I have had 3 case managers from when I first came back to live in
Anchorage from Jeeno Wells in April 1993 then Lender Caldwell when I
lived over in Mountain View to now Tom Coffman who is the best case
manager I have ever had! Jeeno & Lender both left the state of Alaska
and Southcentral Counseling. I was seeing nurse practitioner Jan
Adasiak when I first came back to Anchorage now I see nurse practitioner
Kathleen Dowling. I was taken off the Stelazine by Jan Adasiak and put
on resperidal I was also taking Prozac that was not really working well
for me so Kathleen Dowling took me off Prozac and put me on Luvox. I
had taken Stelazine for at least 10-13 years! Well, I'm continually
getting treatment at Southcentral Counseling even have a compeer person
named Paul Sandhofer who has been my compeer since January 1995. I am
37 years old now will be 38 next February 9. 1999. Now that I have
really grown and become more independent I think I really enjoy my life
awhile lot more now than I did much of the time in the last 16 years. I
feel like I have more freedom and can travel a lot more. I have really
come a long long way in the 17 years I have been up here. I feel like
I'm an old-timer to Anchorage's Southcentral Counseling Center mental
health services in over the last 17 years. I plan to make future plans
for seeing my parents my dad for my 38th birthday ( who still lives in
Independence, Missouri) and my mom who lives in Texas. No, my mom & dad
are not living in Alaska. I am up here all by myself as the only member
in my family. It was best I came up here from the lower 48 as even Utah
had nothing to offer me! I feel Alaska's mental & social services have
been the best I have ever received!

I would have never come up here if my mom had never came to Alaska with
her nursing job in Ketchikan in July 1981. I had also been in the
hospital when I was 14 in 1975 but for only 2 months in Provo, Utah
since living in Anchorage/Seward for the last 17 years I have not been
in API not even once! Well, I have a happy life here in Anchorage now
with my support I get from Southcentral Counseling, & family as well. I
continue to take my medications and get treatment at Southcentral
Counseling Center in the years to come. Well that's about my story for
living in Anchorage with schizophrenia for the last 17 years. I hope I
will continue to grow from this point on.

Daniel E. Compton


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                 last modified 8/5/98