The other side of Los Alamos

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Resources for mentally ill patients aren’t always utilized

By Carol A. Clark

Los Alamos is a wealthy town filled with highly educated people, but that does not spare it from a representative share of mentally distressed residents, supporting the notion that there is a fine line between genius and insanity.

Local police reports are loaded with domestic disputes, assaults upon peace officers and instances of more bizarre behaviors.

Affected individuals are attended to through local mental health systems, law enforcement and church communities as warranted.

“It takes a whole community to try to surround a person in need in a healthy and supportive way,” said Rev. Fr. Colin Kelly of Trinity on the Hill Church.

Kelly said the first step is to determine which individual community the person belongs to whether it’s the senior center, a particular church or a specific family. The second step is to help draw the person into that community in a healthy, healing way.

“We have wonderful organizations in this town. I’ve been a member of Kiwanis for many years and they do a good job of keeping in touch with members going through issues and referring them for help,” Kelly said. “Los Alamos Visiting Nurses Association provides a wonderful nursing ministry and Sombrillo and Aspen Ridge provide tremendous care for those beyond family care.”   

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