Hi, there. Thanks for visiting. I'm starting this blog as an advocate for mental and physical health. I'm a freelance writer and also own a home based medical transcription business. I was diagnosed in 1978 with paranoid schizophrenia and started to become acutely ill three years prior to that, unmedicated, frightened, confused, and in trouble with the law. I graduated from university with distinction the year I became ill. I've never regretted learning how to think at university. I struggled with my illness for 35 years and have reached the top of the mountain now, I think, or the other side, where the grass is greener and the path easier. There's hope for all of us, the whole human race, and never think there isn't hope or joy no matter your circumstances. I'd love to hear your thoughts and experiences with mental illness in all its forms: depression, brain injury, autism, schizophrenia, bipolar, anxiety disorders, etc. and your positive experiences as well as those lies and half truths society and even therapists would have us believe about ourselves.

We are different folks, and we are beautiful. The whole human race is beautiful. Let's celebrate life.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

U of A is OKAY but where's the Truth?

I posted a link on my Facebook page to a guest column and asked for feedback. The guest column is here and I sort of regret posting it. I wondered what my readers thought of the U of A's policy of encouraging students to "snitch" on other students who might have mental health concerns. This news release to which I refer was dated two years ago and I haven't heard anything of it since.

I was wondering if anyone had heard what's happening there at the U of A, my alma mater, and they probably wish they had never heard of me or that I had never entered their doors!

I made some trouble while I was there but it wasn't my fault. In my graduating year I developed a psychosis which involved a delusion of control and delusions of grandeur, to coin the psych's own phrases of yesteryear, which I think might be appropriate. I saw a psychologist at Students' Counseling for two or three years, with no diagnosis and no medication, and when I finished I was whisked away by Campus Security to the downtown police station, to jail, to court, and then to the forensic unit at Alberta Hospital with a diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia.

It seems something might have been done at the time to help me and the unfortunate professor who was at the helm trying to assist, but if this is a sample of the type of help offered there, then it didn't help me! Not until I got to Alberta Hospital, where I belonged in the first place, and then home, and now almost 40 years later, when I recognized that to get help I'd have to break the law and be referred to FACS (Forensic Assessment & Community Services). Which I did.

Unless of course, my delusions of control were correct.

I think the U of A has shown compassion in my case and vice versa. I could say that sending various post cards over the period of two weeks doesn't warrant jail time, when they weren't threatening in any way (asking for forgiveness), and apparently the judge agreed but the prosecutor didn't. I also could say that I took compassion on the accuser and dropped my "not guilty" plea to "guilty" immediately when I was told she was "frail", an accuser I suspect of being bipolar herself, but in a more powerful position than I was.

Whether or not I suffer from major delusions in this case is a thing I don't know and I will agree with the U of A that mental illness does pose a particular challenge, particularly if left unchecked.

I'd love to wear my U of A tee shirt. I'm proud of the institution and agree with the motto "Whatsoever things are true."

Truth may be relative. I don't believe it's absolute.

I'm still waiting for Truth. Anyone?

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