Isn't That Hereditary?
People who have a parent or parents with mental illness often fear that they are next in biological line or destined to have the same mental health issues as their parents. Similar to people who have a parent who dies early from cancer, many people who have a parent with mental illness believe they will not be “safe” from their parent’s illness until they pass the age when their parent’s illness began. These fears reflect identity formation issues that are characteristic of daughters and sons who have a parent with mental illness. Assuming that a person will have a mental illness because their parent has or had an illness reflects pathologizing of mental illness and perpetuates stigma.
People experience mental health challenges and illnesses for many reasons. People who have a parent with mental illness are diverse in their experiences. If you have a parent or parents with mental illness you are not destined to the same situation or illnesses as your parent(s).