The stigma of families with mental illness

Acad Psychiatry. 2008 Mar-Apr;32(2):87-91. doi: 10.1176/appi.ap.32.2.87.


Objective: This article describes family stigma, which is defined as the prejudice and discrimination experienced by individuals through associations with their relatives.

Methods: The authors describe family stigma and present current research related to mental illness stigma experienced by family members. Research indicates this type of stigma negatively impacts family members and relatives with mental illness.

Results: The authors also present strategies to eliminate stigma and discuss implications for the training goals of psychiatrists throughout the text.

Conclusion: The authors end this article with recommendations for psychiatry training goals.

MeSH terms

  • Caregivers / psychology*
  • Curriculum
  • Family Therapy / education
  • Health Education
  • Humans
  • Mental Disorders / psychology*
  • Prejudice*
  • Psychiatry / education
  • Stereotyping