“It’s not impossible to live with schizophrenia, but it requires creating an environment of people who are working toward a common goal.”
— Susan Schofield, mother of 7-year-old schizophrenic child January
There are an estimated 2.4 million American adults living with schizophrenia, reports the National Institute of Mental Health Epidemiologic Catchment Area Program. Stereotypically, and incorrectly so, many people associate schizophrenia with split personality disorder. The reality of schizophrenia is that sufferers may experience a range of symptoms including hallucinations, delusions and disorganized thinking. Some may suffer from movement disorders, including repetitive motions or catatonic states. They may have trouble managing daily tasks, problems concentrating and problems with memory.
Most people suffering from schizophrenia usually develop the disease during adolescence or young adulthood, and pediatric cases are extremely rare — which makes January Schofield, known as Jani, an exceptional child.
Jani was diagnosed with schizophrenia when she was five years old, making her one of the youngest ever to be diagnosed with the illness. We spoke with Jani’s parents, Michael and Susan Schofield, to learn more about Jani, her challenges and her journey.
Submitted by Anna