It stretches further back to January 2008 when I got fully involved in Scotland's mental health world by setting up Peer Support Fife and Chrys Muirhead Associates website, updating my story on the Scottish Recovery Network website and committing myself to the movement for change, which I heard first at the December 2005 Glasgow Peer Support Conference, organised by SRN and others.
|Peer Support Fife website|
In the four years up to February 2012 I ran a number of events through PS Fife and delivered many sessions on WRAP and Peer Support, to individuals and organisations, while providing caring support to my son. I also got involved in various mental health groups locally and nationally, from the carer and survivor perspective, including the clinical psychology training (DClinPsy) at both Edinburgh and Glasgow universities.
Firstly in 2009 to a meeting facilitated by Prof Andrew Gumley and Dr Ross White in the Mental Health and Wellbeing Unit, Administration Building, Gartnavel Royal Hospital, Glasgow. Then in 2011 to Stirling University for a national event, following which I joined both DClinPsy user/carer groups, until my position on the groups became untenable. I believe this was mainly due to my unbelief in the mental illness mantra and having a psychiatric survivor perspective. Being in opposition to biological psychiatry.
I recovered from "mental illness" because I didn't believe in the psychiatric diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder which had been written in my "notes" 2002. Tapered the drugs under my own steam. Helped family members do the same after episodes of psychosis and psychiatric treatment. For nearly 50 years I have been helping my family to survive and recover from mental illness and psychiatric system coercion and abuse.
On 1 January this year I submitted an application, including a 15 page CV, to Glasgow University, for the post of Research Fellow/Project Manager EMPOWER, Chief Investigator Prof Gumley, and was not invited to interview, the reason given that I did not meet the "essential" criteria for the post. Although I was told that my CV was "impressive".
I heard via Facebook late yesterday evening that Simon Bradstreet, SRN Director, got the job. I would have appreciated getting the news by other means than social networks. In a personal Email would have been respectful, considering the work I do, and have done, to inform, educate and empower people like me who are "experts by experience" and others, including academics in their ivory towers. Unpaid work which has often left me out of pocket.
I shall recover from the feelings of pain and disempowerment, of having to soldier on without due recompense or recognition. I will get over it.
Selection of pages from my CV for EMPOWER post, Glasgow University: