Living with Schizophrenia in Oakland: Posted on, December 10, 2016

Through a sea of tissues and a hacking cough, I scan Netflix pressing that stubborn button on my Roku remote multiple times. I read the summations of shows for several minutes until I come across a documentary called, the 13th. Finally, I settle in. Resting is not an easy thing to do with that constant sense of urgency I live with.

I don’t know what’s worse these days: dragging through a pre-holiday week on the outpatient psychiatric unit on Dayquil; or listening to the radio talk about impending loss as the new cabinet of Trump supporters get selected.

A cross town slog into East Oakland after work on the unit one night last week revealed once again that the streets are ever-burgeoning with homeless, some of whom I know intimately. In each car encampment, I saw a distinctive cultural story that needs to be heard.

Continue reading “Living with Schizophrenia in Oakland: Posted on, December 10, 2016”


“I finally understand what a person with a mental illness feels like,lives like, and how he fights for his sanity and his life every single day . . .This book has compassion, passion, understanding, and a force of will that will allow any person to become better and make peace with themselves. Great job.”
Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers’ Favorite


“[Clyde’s] story is fascinating because he is able to intellectualize what he was thinking and feeling at the time, even if he is discussing his paranoid delusional thoughts . . . As someone with a Master’s of Science degree in a counseling field, I have found my greatest lessons have been from real people and not material in textbooks. As I read Clyde’s story, I felt like I learned many lessons through what he has to share. My work will definitely be more beneficial by what I learned from him.”
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (12/15)


“An intensely personal and impressively well written memoir, “Fighting for Freedom in America: Memoir of a ‘Schizophrenia’ and Mainstream Cultural Delusions” is a compelling read from beginning to end.”
Reviewed by Midwest Book Review


“Much has been written on the subject of schizophrenia with as many paths to recovery as there are individuals affected by it, but Dee’s work is most notable for his candid reflections on cultural delusions.  Clearly articulating the loss of faculties that make us what we are, they prove intrinsic to the telling of his story. More importantly they provide an often harrowing perspective on the anguish of mental illness from the inside and in doing so allow Dee to address commonly held beliefs and prejudices.”
Reviewed by Book Viral Spotlight


“Clyde Dee takes us on a heroes journey from condemnation to redemption, from diagnosis to self-definition. Seen through a filter of race, culture and often patriotism, Clyde Dee reminds us how fragile our human existence can be. . .”                                   Reviewed by Cardum Harmon, Executive Director of Heart and Soul in San Mateo County


“This is the tale of what happens when a compassionate, honest, humble man is confronted by corruption, cruelty and malice. . . Clyde’s journey is one of self-discovery which ultimately leads him not away from but back to the man he always was one of society’s unrecognised treasures.”
Reviewed by Debra Lampshire, the University of Aukland
“What a great read! As a person with mental health issues myself, I could relate to most of the memoir. Go ahead and read this book. I guarantee you won’t be able to put it down. Read cover to cover fast!”
Reviewed by Niki’s book review
This ought to be required reading for anyone involved in the mental health industry or anyone who has a friend or family member with the “dangerous gift” of mental illness . . . Combines serious clinical analysis with the empathetic and humanizing “person-centered” approach of the consumer/survivor/ex-patient movement. Moving and real. Read it!
Reviewed by Laura, Amazon
“Passages including Clyde’s dealings with mental health professionals were particularly interesting. Those passages made a case for the problematic nature of the “mental illness” narrative; how that narrative can get in the way of relationships, can make therapy impossible, and can add to the confusion of the one being diagnosed.”
Reviewed by Jonathan Roth, Amazon
“I have to take my hat off to the author Clyde Dee who has taken a tremendously complex subject and through relating his own experiences has made it infinitely more understandable to those of us on the outside looking in. I had never considered the full ramifications of schizophrenia or many of the other mental illness before reading this and I can truly say I am more empathic in my understanding. A big thank you to Clyde Dee for opening my eyes.
Reviewed by Avid Reader, Amazon
He joins the few other courageous authors, many whom also have become professionals in the mental health field, who have written candidly about their personal experiences inside the mental health system as a consumer to help educate and to break open the objectification and dehumanizing treatment towards creating a genuine heart centered person to person empowerment model of compassionate care. As well he says he writes to further his recovery and that of the clinical field and society as well by educating to help dismantle stereotypes and help understand his experience that is usually hidden.
Reviewed by Geese, Amazon
This is an excellent book. It dispels myths and stereotypes associated with mental illness, and instead recounts and explains in a way which makes it clear to understand. Through this understanding, I found I gained a great insight. Dee has a likeable writing style, it’s easy to believe he is writing from experience . . .The author openly explores relationships he has had, and the complexities involved through his schizophrenia and depression are both eye opening and entertaining . . . A captivating book, written with passion, understanding, and emotion.
Reviewed by Michelle Geist, Amazon
It’s a story not often told–coming to terms with the stigma and discrimination of mental health labels. It was a rare view into a world locked and closed to the rest of society–mental health institutions. Clyde Dee had the education, background, and street smarts to survive and the love and help of family and friends to thrive. Thank you for sharing your story, Clyde.
Reviewed by Helena, Amazon

The Importance of Causation in “Psychosis”

I think groups help message receivers when it comes to being flexible with the concept of causation of “psychosis.” One of the few rules of a Hearing Voices Network Group is that all causation explanations are allowed. I’d argue that this sets the stage for what I have come to term functional flexible theory styles. Hearing authentic stories from peers about their experience and beliefs of causation  invites collaboration and ultimately flexibility. I think this naturally helps people out towards their social goals

Not only is discussing their experiences without punishment a novel and emancipating idea, it encourages a sense of belonging to a peer group. A positive consequence is that the group becomes more less focused on the content and more the process of what is going on. There is a sense of working together that helps the message receiver be more mindful and open.  For eight years I have watched this process help heal people.

It is true I have developed some jargon to describe the process of message receiving. In the process of doing this I have become a believe that causation flexibility can help facilitate social goals.  For starters, in my upcoming book on Special Messages, I identify five causation styles:

5 Styles of Theory

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“Fighting for Freedom in America” is a 2016 Readers’ Favorite Honorable Mention in the Non-Fiction – Biography category!

For Immediate Release:  September 24, 2016

Reader’s Favorite recognizes “Fighting for Freedom in America” in its 2016 international book award contest.

The 2016 Readers’ Favorite International Book Award Contest featured thousands of contestants from over a dozen countries.

Oakland, California. Readers’ Favorite has become the fastest growing book review and award contest site on the Internet. They have earned the respect of renowned publishers like Random House, Simon & Schuster, and Harper Collins, and have received the “Best Websites for Authors” and “Honoring Excellence” awards from the Association of Independent Authors. They are also fully accredited by the BBB (A+ rating), which is a rarity among Book Review and Book Award Contest companies.

Continue reading ““Fighting for Freedom in America” is a 2016 Readers’ Favorite Honorable Mention in the Non-Fiction – Biography category!”

“If you don’t know the history of the author than you don’t know what you are reading”

I am a Caucasian Quaker male with a history of an eating disorder and complex trauma who grew up in a prestigious Philadelphia suburb, for whom the standard of care—police harassment, handcuffs that bruise, long-term hospitalizations, forced feeding, nurses you don’t know who come up and cut on you, a schizophrenia diagnosis, seclusion, underemployment, extorted therapy, cognitive therapy and social skills training—didn’t fit. I even found the style of therapy that I found least offensive was not all that helpful to me. However, in my journey, I have found that medication does help me as it was not forced on me. Some of the other standard of care experiences I have been able to put to use, but only after I healed from the trauma of them.

What has emerged for me is a broad historical perspective on concentration-camp realities.  After all, for me it was working amid the needle-and-pipe politics a last resort section 8 housing project that triggered my “psychosis.”  By the time I knew enough about the place to feel it was a concentration camp, I was getting threats that I would end up living in the project as a result of my non-corrupted advocacy.  Indeed I had engaged in some meddlesome activities in the name of advocacy, arguing that they would only be considered meddlesome if I was in fact, like my therapist maintained, paranoid.  Indeed, if I wasn’t defining myself as paranoid, I would have seen my behavior as meddlesome and likely not taken those risks.  But I allowed myself to be bullied on multiple levels.  I may have threatened people from a different culture who I liked and wanted to help.  When I received a pointed threat from an ex-drug dealing friend on the east coast, who I explained my situation to, I got scared and tried to flee. It took me a long time to be mindful and heal from what transpired: it is documented in my first book, a memoir.

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Tilling the Institutional Soil in Kraeplin’s Kingdom:

As many know, Emile Kraeplin (pronounced crap-land) formed the magical thoughts that are the basis of mainstream DSM propaganda that forms the businesses and billing systems that occupy the nation’s mental health. Though the idea that an observable behavior is the result of a specific brain dysfunction is more magical than proven, many feel it is best to uphold it to maintain social order. This will save jobs and maintain the power of political action committees that advocate for them, like the AMA the APA, and the big pharm PAC (pharmaceutical industry.) Still if people can grow anyway managing the manure in the pastures in effective manners if they learn to work together.

With a dominant discourse that assumes pathology, and exacerbates stigma myths that I have seen Patrick Corrigan define in lectures as: 1) danger; 2) developmental regression, and 3) loveable buffoonery; a sense of community can remain behind barb-wire confines of old institutional white walls, leaking urinals, in unheated or drug infested homes, sometimes tended with authoritarianism midst cigarette smoke, throughout days without a sense of meaning and purpose or inclusion in the monetary system.

Well-intended peoples who take home the money society prescribes for these hacienda communities may run patrol making assessments about what is real without an understanding of what the message experience is like.  Such workers eyes may operate with a subsequent skewed sense of their own power and health and without being encouraged to study or understand the process of the culture they work with. As a result well-intended people may not always hold high regard for the likeliness of competence and recovery that exists therein.

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Midwest Book Review: Small Press Bookwatch: May 2016: Reviewer’s Choice

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Reviewer’s Choice

Fighting for Freedom in America
Clyde Dee
Outskirts Press, Inc.
10940 S. Parker Road, #515, Parker, CO 80134
9781478759928, $20.95, PB, 328pp,

Critique: An intensely personal and impressively well written memoir, “Fighting for Freedom in America: Memoir of a ‘Schizophrenia’ and Mainstream Cultural Delusions” is a compelling read from beginning to end. Very highly recommended for both community and academic library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that “Fighting for Freedom in America” is also available in a Kindle edition ($5.99).

Recreating Myself within a Changing Economy

Seventy years ago my family closed a lumber company in upstate New York. A series of small towns had built up primarily around the business and had to be abandoned and redefined. As is often the case, times change the economy and people have to find new ways to survive.

Growing up, I never considered that the closure of the company had much of an effect on my family.  Perhaps as the first born in the second generation since the closing, I just didn’t notice that I carried an unspoken weight. For years I have seen my father at times thanklessly function as the steward of swaths of land and vacation homes up in a small town within the region. This was not a footprint that I in any way would end up following.

Usually one does not think of a child born with such immense privilege as ending up homeless and in a state mental hospital. At some points in my journey I have been defined by long lists of psychiatric diagnosis. I prefer to consider myself as having chosen to find a new way to survive based on a changing economy.

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Cutting Room Floor – Live & Recorded Episodes: 500, 497

The Cutting Room Floor seeks to help independent filmmakers and other entertainers promote their projects.

Source: Cutting Room Floor – Live & Recorded Episodes: 500