This film began six years ago. The story began much earlier.
My brother Rick grew up suffering from O.C.D. at a time when this illness was not so widely well known or diagnosed. Unfortunately, and at a great, personal cost to himself, he managed to conceal the seriousness of his disability for many years. But once diagnosed in his late teens, his adult life was completely marred by his struggles to battle this demon. As the battles became more fierce and frequent, and his life began to crumble around him, I decided that I wanted to find some way to help him and maybe gain insight into to his debilitating disease. At the time we began, he lived in Florida where there was little in the way of meaningful or accessible treatment. I, along with my other six siblings lived in Pennsylvania. This added another layer of complication to our efforts. It became imperative for Rick to travel to Pennsylvania more regularly in order for me to assist him. He lived on and off with me. And as we began to seriously pursue the treatment that we hoped would enable him to reclaim his life, Rick and I decided to chronicle the journey. We wanted to provide a personal, accurate profile to possibly help others in a similar position. Along the way this film became about much more than Rick and his pain. It also became about how one family, my family, tried to help our adult sibling with mental illness.
It is my hope that this film puts a very real, relatable face to the mental illnes that 1 in 5 American families deal with every day. Because it was filmed over a four-year period, it provides an in-depth examination of the challenges, frustrations, fears and heartache that ebb and flow in the world of mental illness. More often than not the solutions do not come freely—if at all. No one wants to watch a loved one suffer or experience the helplessness that usually permeates the road to recovering from mental health. Saving Rick lifts the veil of guilt and blame and reminds families that you are not alone.
If you have experienced or know someone who has suffered any sort of mental illness, or if you just want to lend support to the millions who do, you can do so by helping us complete Saving Rick. Any amount will help.