Pete’s Live Chat at USA TODAY

USA TODAY is now accepting written questions for Pete . He  will be answering them on line starting at 1:30 p.m. EST on Monday, January 17, 2011. 

You can ask your question by clicking here. 

Pete’s Op Ed piece,  Don’t Blame the Parents of Jared Loughner, has garnered more than 300 comments since it was posted Friday on the Internet. Many of the comments showed a profound ignorance about mental illnesses and the struggles that parents face when an adult child becomes sick.

What sort of questions will be asked Monday?  Will you be asking one?  Join the discussion, share your story, and help educate readers.

About the author:

Pete Earley is the bestselling author of such books as The Hot House and Crazy. When he is not spending time with his family, he tours the globe advocating for mental health reform.

Learn more about Pete.


  1. Leslieelisekhalsa says

    Please bring up the fact that people who qualify for SSDI have to wait 24 months for Medicare coverage…what kind of society officially declares people “too disabled to work” and then makes them wait 24 months to get services? It happens right here: so many of us waiting, increasingly ill and disabled…and the health insurance companies WILL NOT COVER US. (I have Bipolar Disorder…that is apparently ILLEGAL in America.) Oh, and there is VERY POOR COORDINATION OF SERVICES. I am trying to get a case manager because I need help…and I even struggle to make the phone call to ask for help!!! And there are so many people who don’t have the presence of mind to even reach out for help.

  2. Leslieelisekhalsa says

    Also…I heard a discussion today where someone was saying that teachers and doctors are well-trained in spotting signs of mental illness. Not true, in my experience (as a student who struggled and as a former Special Education teacher).

  3. just a mom says

    I, like so many others am overwhelmed with the sheer magnitude of responsibility that caring for my 24 yr old schizophrenic son requires. NAMI has been a great resource and has led me to different facilities, legal help, Dr.’s etc. One thing that has not been brought up is the possibility of gaining guardianship of our adult mentally ill children. I had to “misrepresent the truth” a bit as I have in times past to get my son help but I promised him that I have and always will, have his best interest at heart. We went to family court in Texas to get this accomplished and it has made our lives much easier when my son needs treatment and cannot adequately ask for it by himself. We are now his legal guardians. It has also helped when he is arrested (like many of your sons) and I am allowed to speak for him. He is not allowed to make a plea before the court without me. He has been placed in the care of the mental health courts and the DA and I have been able to agree on a reasonable plan for him. My husband and I are also in the process of setting up a special needs trust for him and have spoken to other members of the family about his care when we no longer are able. Don’t get me wrong; this has taken years, not months but we do feel more in control of the situation no matter what state of mind our son is in. God bless those who are the advocates for these fragile and forgotten members of our society.