Friday, 16 May 2014

enjoying reading 'Cradling the Chrysalis' and 'I Haven't Had to Go Mad Here' - 2 sides of the same coin?


I recently got a copy of 'Cradling the Chrysalis: teaching/learning psychotherapy' by Mary MacCallum Sullivan (whom I know personally) and Harriet Goldenberg, from Ebay.  And around the same time my son lent me a 1979 paperback copy of Joseph H Berke's 'I Haven't Had to Go Mad Here: The psychotic's journey from dependence to autonomy'.

A feast of reading and much to reflect on.  I don't want to read them too quickly.  For one, I'm savouring the experience, and two, I don't want to miss anything by rushing through.  Although I usually do skim pages or dip into the end bits when getting a book in my hands.  Old habit die hard.  Trying to see the end from the beginning.

Each of the books is an opposite or complementary to the other, in the man/woman sense but also in the pace and content.  However from what I've read so far there are similarities in the stance and getting alongside the mad person.  Level playing fields and human relationships rather than clinical objectivity and them/us.

I want to take notes and do further investigation of the quotes mentioned and the references given.  It should broaden my perspective on the psychotherapeutic approach.  I've had a hankering for learning more about the process and practice since hearing of the postgraduate course in psychodynamic counselling from Mary MacCallum Sullivan, organising tutor, now called the Diploma in Human Relations and Counselling.

I believe that there is a place for the psychodynamic and psychotherapeutic approaches in working with people in altered mind states and psychoses.  I'd like to see the drug "therapies" moving aside to let the talking therapies in to the mix.  

It will require action from health boards and government to create the breathing/talking space.  With agitation from the experts by experience at the grassroots.  So that a redistribution of power is achieved in psychiatric settings.  Nothing about us without us.


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