How to keep moving families of mental disoders with moxie

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"Latesha, will you go to the gym with me?

"Not now honey, I don't feel like it."

"How'd you like to go get something to eat?"

"I'm not hungry."

"Hey Latesha-would you pick up the phone. It's your sister."

"Tell her I'm not here."

"Can I change the channel on the TV?"

"I don't care; I'm not watching it anyway."

Daryl was trying to be polite by asking questions. What he really wanted to say was, "Latesha, get out of bed and start moving, eating, and talking to others! I am very concerned that you haven't functioned all month!"

Ordinarily, Latesha was the queen of functioning. She was a mother of two, manager of a large customer service department, and could bake a better pie than anyone in the neighborhood. She led an active life, enjoying golfing, swimming, and dancing. Latesha was well-liked by her staff; who appreciated her sense of humor. She was loved by her husband; her golfing friends; and her sister who lived across the street. She and her sister practically lived at each other's houses.

They practically live at each other's houses-until Latisha started avoiding everything and everyone, including her sister, husband, and friends that loved her so much. Daryl had thought maybe Latesha was overly stressed, and that rest would help. But Latesha had not bounced back. The more she lay around, the more "stuck" she became.

Daryl picked up the remote and shut the TV off. He stood up, and called her name. "Latesha, you might get angry at me for inconveniencing you, but we are going to take a walk together, right now. Are you going to put on your shoes or am I?"

When she started to protest, he said, "I'd rather you be mad at me then stuck in bed the rest of your life. Here are your shoes."

It took all her willpower to put on her shoes. She mumbled something softly, and stood up. She reached for Daryl's arm, and took the first of many steps that would lead to a solid recovery.


Katrina Holgate Miller, PhD writes about the strengths and skills people use to face their mental health issues with empowerment (moxie) rather than victimization.

She has turned her 30+ years of clinical experience with thousands of clients into stories and tips about how her clients were able to recover from mental illness and addiction and return to the roles they enjoyed during times of wellness. She is author of the website Her email is


Katrina Holgate Miller, PhD, MFT is a freelance medical journalist specializing in mental health.

Her professional experience has encompassed many facets of mental health care, including mental health assessment and treatment, substance abuse, domestic violence, sexual abuse (victims and perpetrators), couples counseling, and adolescent group counseling. For the past five years, Katrina has worked with patients across the country to help them resolve their barriers to adequate and effective mental healthcare and chemical dependency/addiction treatment.

Her writing tells the stories of the patients who used their moxie to overcome their distress.


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