Wednesday, 1 January 2014

'Psychosis: The secret life of my family' Sara Kenney @Independent

"For 20 years, Sara Kenney has kept silent about her two brothers' psychotic illness. But now she hopes her film, inspired by their story, will help to lift the stigma."

An interesting Independent media article 'Psychosis: The secret life of my family' by Sara Kenney, TV producer.  I can identify with parts of this story as all of my family have experienced psychoses as a normal part of living.  However it was the psychiatric treatment that was more traumatic and hard to recover from.  I wouldn't describe psychosis as an "illness", rather an altered mind state due to life's stresses or traumas.

['Angels and Ghosts' is funded by the Wellcome Trust and screens at the ICA on Wednesday 15 January, as part of the London Short Film Festival. A trailer can be seen here:]


"More than 75 per cent of people who experience psychosis go on to recover completely, or the illness is episodic, but controllable. There is hope – both my brothers are doing well now, after years of the illness. I believe my mother played a big role in their recovery. She is a social worker who specialises in mental health.

She's an advocate of CBT and we often joke that she talked them back to health. The scientific evidence for the effectiveness of CBT has grown, but in spite of this research, the availability for patients is still low. This needs to change.

The strange creatures have left us in peace for now. I suddenly feel very nervous about people reading this and knowing my secret.

However, I am comforted by the fact that my brothers support me in writing about our experiences. If it can help just one person realise that they are not alone in their battle, then that has to be a good thing."

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