I like to think that I could recommend writing to some other people who have been subjected to a diagnostic labeling process that diminishes their hopes and potential. Indeed as emotional tension pulses through my back and appendages, I have found few other outlets that are there for me like the mixing and mastering letters.
Sure, I have been sent to a shrink for being who I am. Sure, I have been buried in institutions at different points of my life. Indeed life on that trajectory has filled me with loss and lack. But when I’ve found myself incarcerated immobile, I’ve been blessed to find value in defining it. Initially as a teen, I found appreciating expressive words through music got me started. The more I switched from song to verse to story, I found the problem-solving that takes place in the editing process satisfying. Indeed for me there are few other outlets that rival writing in terms of learning about life and wellness.
Continue reading “Writing for Mental Health: Six Basic Considerations”
Fifteen years ago, I remember hearing a psychiatrist who had just been away for two weeks say, “There is no such thing as a vacation when you are schizophrenic!” As an unlicensed professional vying to get a staff position on the unit, I had carefully avoided rolling my eyes. I had politely nodded my head as though it had been a thoughtful thing to say.
This year’s weekend of April 1st, my wife supports me in insisting that we take a vacation day. She packs up her hybrid SUV with camping materials and when I finish my Friday commute, we hit the interstate headed north. We plan to camp and hike at the Kings Range on the Lost Coast in Humboldt County, but we know even before we sift through the remains of the Bay Area traffic, there’s no way we are going to make it the whole way.
We make it to the city of Ukiah and drive until we find a Safeway. I am about ready to drop as we load our shit into the front of the car and depart to hit the restroom. We pass the panhandlers and the no camping sign and I start to stress about the possibility that the security will force us to move on in the middle of the night.
“Don’t worry about it my boobie,” says my wife.
I look into the eyes of a particular panhandler and hate our privilege. There sure are a significant amount of late night shoppers who are finishing their long weeks. I ponder the meaning of it all over the urinal. After we regroup, we steal into the back of the SUV.
Continue reading “A Vacation Day for a Schizophrenic:”
TITLE OF PRESENTATION:
Changing the Treatment Paradigm Locally for Those who Experience Psychosis
This workshop outlines how diverse persons with lived experience provided outreach, made presentations and ran groups in ways that honored their lived experience with “psychosis.” Imagine how a system populated with such specialists might improve treatment for those who might otherwise be wary of accepting services.
Tim Dreby, MFT Rehabilitation Counselor, Author, “Fighting for Freedom in America: Memoir of a “Schizophrenia” and Mainstream Cultural Delusions,”
1.Participants will be able to articulate two reasons why psychosis can be treated as a as a cultural issue.
2. Participants will be able to identify three reasons why paying more mindful attention to elements of universal process of “psychosis” can help lead to social rehabilitation.
3. Participants will identify three things that can be done locally to increase engagement of individuals who experience “psychosis”.
In the company of his own fellowship
A coldness impales the male persona
As he stands in a barren winter field
Where the rapidly shifting wind throws his
Chilled stiff body into nothingness.
He stands trying to conceal his shiver.
Above the infinite eye of the night
Glares down upon the stupid smallness
Of his existence, reminding him
That millions have died in war, all of whom
Have been embedded into the cold ice
Of this winter night. Masculinity
Continue reading “The Male Heart”
Hiking these stone spattered mountains alone,
Do the true utterances I might speak
Make the barren field of my heart full sown?
Pondering the breadth of the love I don’t own
I ascend to another lonesome peak
Hiking these stone spattered mountains alone.
Continue reading “Talking to Intimacy”