The Crooked House

The Challenges of Adult Children with a Mentally Ill Parent



What we're doing...

THE CROOKED HOUSE offers a window of understanding into the experience of growing up with a parent with mental illness...all too familiar for some...while for others completely unknown. We collect and present personal accounts from individuals who may never before have shared these memories...

Everyone's experience is different. Some people may feel shame, isolation, fear, confusion, anger and intense grief.

But they gain skills to cope with the challenges and their hearts grow in compassion and understanding, in wisdom and insight.

We want to share the wisdom, insights and compassion with you....Perhaps you have had a similar experience and are seeking ways to understand and come to terms with it and to heal....

Or perhaps you know nothing at all about this sort of experience but you have a friend, spouse, someone you work with or interact with professionally who has this difficulty in their background and you want to know more, to understand more of their life story....

The purpose of this website is to offer knowledge and understanding from those who have lived it...

Compassionate Touch Network
The Crooked House
1000 Cordova Place, #4367
Santa Fe, NM 87505

We are…

a dedicated team – a writer and videographer who both have family members with mental illness.

We met while working on Minds Interrupted: Stories of Lives Affected by Mental Illness – a project to help reduce stigma around mental illness (see

Inspired by the possibility to share stories about the particular challenges of growing up with a parent who has or had mental illness, we originally planned to produce a documentary.

We realized, however, that a website would be more flexible and might reach more people so we created The Crooked House.

Your Support -- Did this website help you? Will it help others?

Our work is supported primarily by family foundations such as the Max and Anna Levinson Foundation and by donors such as yourself.

Your contribution makes possible our quest for stories and for the continuing development of this website. Donations by check are tax-deductible.

We also welcome your suggestions and ideas for additional resources and links. Please let us know if this website has been helpful to you.

We greatly look forward to hearing YOUR STORIES. Use this space to express your feelings and to share strengths and wisdom you've gained.

Thanks for your interest and support.



Compassionate Touch Network is a Santa Fe-based 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization and is proud is be the fiscal sponsor for The Crooked House. The Compassionate Touch Network (CTN) promotes community health and social advocacy through education, healing, and the arts. Our goal is to raise mental health awareness and erase the stigma of mental illness. For more information, contact Michele Herling, 505-577-7840 or go to

"If someone is crazy and no one talks about it, you cannot know the truth of something.

The reality testing is off. You don't know what normal is." (Christopher Durang)



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