Friday, February 3, 2023

Comments by ChrysMuirhead

Showing 13 of 14 comments. Show all.

  • Dear Michael it’s good to read your blog post and to hear your voice again denouncing the abusive power of psychiatry. Hello again!

    Since we last spoke I’ve been busy getting through another psychosis in 2015, without psychiatry this time around, had no option but to avoid it. Wouldn’t have been safe within their walls after I’ve been speaking out and exposing the human rights abuses done to my son February 2012.

    I’ve never believed in mental illness or psychiatric dogma which meant that their Dx labels had no power over me. I have my Mother to thank for this. She was a psychiatric abuse survivor and her example was a great inspiration to me. Labelled with Schizophrenia and given many courses of ECT in earlier years because of externalising her mental distress. Yet she led a dignified life, productive despite their bad treatment, on a Depixol depot almost until the day she died 19 November 1998. My hero.

    I’ve got an Opinion Piece getting published in the Psychosis Journal, strapline: Risk of Relapse in Psychosis: facing the fear, resisting mental illness. I hope to write more pieces for journals from the survivor perspective, a testimony. My youngest son is doing a lot better now, it wasn’t easy the first few years after they abused him, physically, mentally and sexually, in the locked seclusion room of our local psychiatric locked ward Feb12. We got no psychological or community support. They tried to blame me for it in their Notes. Therefore I listened to my son and kept on listening, as best I could. Then he did the same for me in 2015 when I experienced a reactive psychosis after years of campaigning and getting No Justice. I am still fighting for justice and expect to get it, at some point.

    I’m also working for Safe haven crisis Houses in Scotland, had tried to start a PhD in Clinical Psychology at the University of Edinburgh, should have been starting this week but it fell through. I’m pursuing other avenues so as to research and develop Safe Houses for Psychosis. And will be working on this until I leave this earth. For the sake of my family.

    All the best to you Michael, I hope at some point we may meet in person. Meanwhile I shall endeavour to read your words on MIA.

    Kind regards, Chrys

  • Thanks Stephen. Hope you are well.

    As mentioned I’ve been away having another psychosis, this time avoiding coercive psychiatric drug treatment. I enjoyed the experience, made a full recovery, stronger for having gone through it, only took Lorazepam twice to regulate sleep.

    Withdrew from Mad in America September 2015 after having a complete breakdown, physical and mental, following 3yrs campaigning for justice after my son was abused in our local psychiatric hospital’s locked ward and locked seclusion room February 2012. Although I got an apology from the health board there was no admission of guilt or blame. They got paid £4.4 million from Scottish Government and we have gotten financially poorer.

    My son has lived with me since before and after Feb12. He’s doing a lot better now, got off the Haloperidol by about August 2012, tapering to zero, with support of psychiatrist and my peer support. We were abandoned by community MH services for whistleblowing, speaking out about abuse. Flashbacks from abuse were very difficult for him, also for me, the anger and disempowerment. He has gradually become more productive and lives with Bipolar Disorder diagnosis, and mental health challenges. These I contend are mainly to do with psychiatric treatment, their failure to heal his psyche, rather they damaged him, as they do with many, many others.

    I continue to speak out through twitter
    other social networks and my blog, website. Plus I am trying to have an influence, and to teach. I wanted to do a doctorate in Clinical Psychology, researching and evidencing Safe haven crisis Houses, but have been knocked back, at this point. However I’ve not given up on it.

    Cheers, Chrys

  • “the psyche was attempting, all along, to reimagine the person into their higher and truer self” yes I agree, having experienced psychosis 4 times now, 3 of them being coercively drugged in psychiatric settings (1978, 1984, 2002) and the 4th, in 2015/16, I transitioned avoiding psychiatry. Much more enjoyable to live through a reactive psychosis without hindrance, loss of agency due to neuroleptics. I can remember the imaginings, the otherness of it and being more in tune with the environment, nature, creation. It has enhanced my life and made me a stronger person.

    For me, dreams are where my mind makes sense of what has gone before and I wake up clearer and with purpose. I prefer not to know what went on in the dream state, don’t need to know, it’s good enough that it “works”.

    I experienced the last psychosis in August 2015 after a complete breakdown, years of campaigning for justice after my son was abused in the locked seclusion room of our local psychiatric hospital. End of July got taken in an ambulance to A&E, high blood pressure, thought I was a goner, choking to death. My body had had enough. Brain clenching, felt like a stroke. Didn’t tell anyone, waited for it to pass, then experienced altered mind states, fear of shadows, of sleep, so got Lorazepam from “out-of-hours” doctor, took one pill twice to regulate sleep. Coped with altered reality as long as I could get a good night’s sleep. Extra-sensitive to Others, thoughts of “secret agents”, I reasoned these out as being agents for good, protecting my welfare, reconstructed the psychosis to be a positive experience while going through it.

    I engaged virtually by Email with 2 clinical friends, a psychologist and psychiatrist, they both seemed as mad as me. That was helpful. I trusted them with nonsense and memories. They were companions on the journey through madness. My son who lives with me (survivor of psychiatric abuse) cared for me. I couldn’t have become a mental patient again, they wouldn’t want me in their premises, a whistleblower. This meant I had to come through psychosis without psychiatry. Had to depend on my own resources. And so I did.

  • Thanks for responding Richard! Also thanks to Sue for her encouragement too.

    Your suggestion about writing something for MIA is interesting and I will think about it. I came off as a writer in September 2015 because I was working through another psychosis and had to draw back, focus on keeping well. I’m stronger for the experience, particularly avoiding psychiatric treatment.

    Cheers, Chrys

  • Well done Richard! You’re looking well. Hope Sue is doing fine.

    I also picked up my guitar after a while, in 2015 after experiencing another psychosis, recorded some songs on SoundCloud:

    Managed to transition the psychosis this time around avoiding psychiatry, just took Lorazepam on a couple of nights to regulate sleep and enjoyed the altered mind states experience, supported by clinical friends virtually, a psychologist and psychiatrist. Took up knitting, swimming again, also a new activity cycling! Been to Rothesay, Isle of Bute, with bike, in a day from Springfield, Fife, where I live. From East to West of Scotland and back. Great fun. Here’s a photo album of the adventure:

    My son Daniel is doing better now, over 5yrs after being abused in locked seclusion room of our local psychiatric hospital locked ward. He tapered Haloperidol within 5 months of discharge April 2012 with support of psychiatrist and my peer mentoring. The first year or two was very difficult. Flashbacks from the psychiatric abuse. I eventually got an apology from NHS Fife. They got £4.4million from Scottish Government. It pays to abuse mental patients. We got poorer, can’t afford a car now. It’s not easy speaking out against oppressive systems.

    I’m working to promote, eventually develop Safe Houses for Psychosis in Scotland, Fife first, alternatives to coercive psychiatric drug treatment. Had hoped to do a PhD/doctorate but that hasn’t transpired so far. There’s a bit of resistance here to survivor voices. But that won’t stop me!

    Bye for now, Chrys

  • Eight of my family, all of us in 3 generations, have experienced psychoses and coercive psychiatric treatment because of it, in 5 different health board areas of Scotland, since the 1950’s until 2013 (so far). We don’t “hear voices” yet were given the same labels/Dx as those who do eg schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder. For us psychosis is an escape, a transition, a journey, a release from life trauma eg painful, induced childbirth; physical health issues – collapsed lungs, life-threatening appendectomy; losing a baby; spiritual, existential challenges; loss etc.

    I’ve survived psychoses and coercive psychiatry 3 times: in 1978, 1984 and 2002, by first resisting drugging then capitulating then tapering the drugs and making a full recovery. I experienced another psychosis in August 2015 following a physical and mental health breakdown due to human rights campaigning after my son was abused in a locked seclusion room of our local psychiatric hospital. Although we got an apology I felt there was No Justice. I was fortunate to avoid psychiatry in 2015, came through the psychosis and acute mental states with the support of family and virtually supported by clinical friends. Who listened to my ramblings, shared stories and sounded mad themselves. This was very helpful.

    I’m stronger for having experienced another psychosis. It has brought me closer to the environment, to plants, birds, wildlife, and I took up again various creative and sporting activities eg knitting, sewing, gardening, cycling, swimming, incorporating these into my blog:

    I believe that psychoses and altered minds states are positive and useful experiences, necessary for spiritual growth. The problem for us has always been the “treatment”. Coercive drugging and shocking. Disabling and shortening lives. Which is why I’m planning to research Safe haven crisis Houses in the UK and abroad, evidencing good practice, so as to develop more of the same in Scotland so that my family and others can avoid coercive psychiatric treatment.

  • I found this post useful and positive, promoting psychodynamic and cognitive interpersonal therapies as alternatives to (coercive) psychiatric drug treatments. In particular I’d like to see a range of therapies offered to people experiencing psychosis, flexible, skilled therapists who are able to empathise with the person and most of all listen to what they are saying.

    I’ve had enough of coercive drugging by psychiatric professionals, on myself and other family members, when experiencing altered mind states due to life trauma. I’m planning research into safe haven crisis houses in the UK and abroad, to evidence good practice and to influence development of safe houses in Scotland, avoiding coercive psychiatric inpatient treatment.