Interview: Dr Michael Corry on Depression, Identity and World Peace

+ interview with Susan Mcfeely on Mental Health Care.

Healing depression without drugs or electric shocks was the name of a Conference held in Dublin, Ireland on Saturday October 21st 2006. The event was organised by Dr. Michael Corry, the controversial psychiatrist, author and surgeon who believes that treatments like Electric Shock therapy and lobotomy should be banned in Ireland (and world wide) and anti-depressent medication exposed as ineffective in treating the emotional and not medical condition of “Depression”. The main speaker was the American Dr. Peter Breggin who claimed to have never started one of his mentally ill patients on medication. His philosophy was simple. Human ethics demand that we treat each other like humans and not as machines with mechanical defficiancies. In the States he has exposed many pharmaceutical companies to be unethical in their dishonesty about the true effects of the anti-depressant and mind altering drugs that they produce. See  www.Breggin.com

Below are two interviews: One with Dr.Corry and, the other with Susan McFeely (from the Non Governmental Agency Schizaphrenia Ireland).

The pair joined forces several weeks ago to host a discussion in Dublin’s Univeristy College Dublin, on Human Mental Distress and the disastrous approach the Irish field of Psychiatry has to all mental health conditions. For more on their campaign, visit www.depressiondialogues.ie and the www.wellbeingfoundation.com

We need a new language, as Wittengenstein suggested, and only when we have a new vocabulary will we have a new paradigm. I plan on putting a steak through the heart of the Irish Mental Health care System and how it is run.

Dr Michael Corry

 

So, what’s the difference between emotional damage and brain damage?

MC: Brain damage is where the organ of the brain actually has cellular changes, where there is actual pathological changes that could be seen on Post-mortem or could be seen on a MRI scan. Emotional damage is something that is coming in at the level of feeling and can only be described or can only be witnessed.

Do you know why Western medicine is so unwilling to accept that sickness is related to the mind and is this why mental health is so misunderstood?

What we’ve got to do is try and make a distinction between the actual organ of the brain itself, which in most cases of psychological distress is actually perfect. It’s the program..the software - The thoughts, the beliefs, the conditionings that make each one of us feel different.

Why is mental health so expensive?

The dominant model in Western medicine is that if you have a psychological problem it's a disease and that the only way you can fix a disease is with medication. Pharmaceutical companies have always exploited the cost of medication. I worked in Africa for years and I saw how they were exploiting the poorest nations in the world with the medication that could treat HIV. Its just pure greed and corruption.

Talking therapies are expensive as well.

Well that’s always used as an excuse and therefore it’s a justification as to why people are on medication, but it would be like the equivalent of some-one going in for cardiac surgery who has three coronary arteries that are blocked and the surgeon just does one and says sorry, we could’t afford to the other two. If talking therapy is what works - then that’s what we should be doing. There is no shortage of money in this country to train people in psychotherapy and using the excuse that we do not have the time – and putting people on medication to cut costs is a hideous concept.

 

Societies have treated mental health differently throughout the ages. How would you categorise the approach today in the world?

Well, the approach today is that – if you have a psychological problem, it’s a disease. Nowadays, people are under phenomenal stress in order to cope with modern life. In Africa there was a saying. “It takes a village to raise a child”.  We just don’t have that sanctuary or community or grandparents that people had in other times. We don’t necessarily have our brother or sisters, elders or aunts, uncles or the even the Shaman who can help us when we get into difficulty. Western Culture bears no relationship to the origins of the human species. When Homo Sapiens evolved, he was part of a family, a tribe a community. It was a huge molecular grouping. Now, as you know its nuclear. People are isolated and on their own. The support systems are not there. The awareness is not there. Industrial society has caused the fragmentation of family life – of community life.

 

You have said that mental health should be taught in Irish schools, what do you think about about philosophy being made a staple of the curriculum?

When Children come into the world they are very adventurous, and very curious, they ask huge questions about meaning, about where they are going,things like: "who made me, where do I go when I die?". Children are actually engaging in philosophical conversations except the answers we’re giving them don't match the questions they are actually asking! Children are well able to look at different belief systems. They believe in Santa and Fairies simultaneously. Children have incredible imagination and that imagination can be  utilized by bringing them into understanding what it is to be a human being. The notion that we can have a spiritual experience as a human being…children actually grasp that. The notion that when they die, the spirit part of them lives on, children have a complete appreciation of that. But as time goes by these philosophical questions are replaced by much more concrete statements.Like “I have to go to school. I have to get my points; I have to be on the team. I have to look attractive”. So the whole area of philosophy breaks down. Of course philosophy should be taught in schools. Psychology should be taught in schools, emotional intelligence should be taught in schools. We need a curriculum that is based on the nine intelligence's that have been articulated by Harvard university.

Did religion stop such philosophical enquiry?

I think Religion is dead.It’s not affecting today'schildren. I don’t think children have any appreciation of the repressive religious state that we were actually raised in. The problem is because religion is gone, spirituality unfortunately has been dragged down with it. The church destroyed spirituality. People have become so cynical with anything to do with spirituality – because they associate it with the Church. The catholic regime in Ireland actually set back consciousness, it set back the whole notion of what Jesus Christ was about. He was about Heart-conciousness, about Love, about Forgiveness, about Acceptance and about Peace.

What are people afraid of in terms of the irrational? Do you consider Tarot or clairvoyance/chakra energy as a positive force in mental health care?

I myself work with the concept of the chakras. They make sense for me because I can see how the body is organised into seven different levels. It fits, the whole notion that the body is made of wave and particle when you go into the quantum state.

Will it ever be accepted?

It is accepted particularly in America, where there is enough money and centers to support the use of chakra and vibrational medicine. We already know that one of the things that happens when people get depressed is that their heart actually closes. The fourth chakra  actually shuts down. Science has no problem recognising the chrakras. I mean each system corresponds to a colour. And each colour corresponds to a particular vibration of light. Each chakra vibrates to a particular frequency easily identifiable and it's completely understood in some circles. But the tragedy is that at the moment, that dominant medicine doesn't really want to look at those things.

 

What is Neuro-linguistic programming?

Neuro-linguistic programming is essentially …change your thoughts, change your belief systems and then you can change your world. Change your mind, change your universe…happy thoughts….happy molecules. It  makes perfect sense that the language that we use, the thoughts that we use actually influence our bio-chemistry. The biology of belief completely fits in with neuro-linguistics…that every word we actually think can effect our body. Visualise a lemon cut it up, bite into it and suck…it you will taste a lemon. But there is none. These are just thoughts.

Are you saying all mental illness is linked to our emotions? And can you then organise this into degrees of emotional trauma?

All mental illness is linked to the way we think and to the way in which we feel and ultimately to the way in which we behave. All mental illness as far as I am concerned is related to personality. And personality is encapsulated in the relationship between, thinking, feeling and behaving. It’s a triangular relationship and they all talk to each other.

Can you treat a psychopath?

YES, we are talking about Psyche - soul…and path which is pathology; can belief systems change, can the mind change? Yes, of course. Human beings are a work in progress.I am different from myself yesterday and even a year ago. Yes – if we change our belief systems, if we change our thinking, then yes our behavior will change.

Why are most GP’s allowed to prescribe drugs so easily to patients that will effect their consciousness? How did this happen?

Well, because they are doctors. Because they have the power to write prescriptions. In the same way that they can write a prescription for an anti-biotic or for an anti-hypotensive agent, they also have the power to help for sleep and prescribe anti-depressive medication but what we can do is point out to G.P.'s is that what they are doing is flawed! They are turning something that is not a disease into a disease. There is an error in their thinking, if they believe that they can treat something like depression, which is an emotion, with a physical intervention. If a doctor prescribes anti-depressant medication on the basis that it is a disease, then technically, they are liable. They are guilty of mal-practice. If someone commits suicide as a result of being treated and there is already evidence of one in a thousand per year, then on this basis the doctor can be sued.

 

Why even go to GP when you feel depressed – where did this impetus come from?

That’s the problem. Who do you go to – now? If we’re saying that family has broken down, community has broken down .There’s no wise people. Who do you go to? Your doctor. And the paradox is your doctor isn't trained in philosophy or in spirituality – he/she has no understanding of sociology, has no understanding of cause and effect. Doctors are there to treat diseases, they are not there or trained to sort out problems of feeling. That’s why we need training in psychotherapy. Psyche means soul, therapia means attending. What doctor out there, is trained in soul attending?

Why are the Irish so afraid of Melancholy and not fascinated by it?

I think we as a nation were destroyed. We were colonised first by the church, our druidic/celtic culture was eclipsed and then tragically, we were colonised again by the British. They occupied us for 800 years. They destroyed our culture, destroyed our language, our music…everything about what it was to be Irish. Ireland was the first place in the world where apartheid was practiced. We suffered a lot of melancholy. That is deep within our psyche. People during the famine were being told if you convert to Protestantism you will be fed. And I think if you were to put this nation of Ireland on the couch, you would se that we are suffering from Post Traumatic Stress.So in the collective consciousness, melancholy is something that we know a lot about and we are terrified. We were oppressed for hundreds of years, witnessing the destruction of a nation of individuality and the destruction of human expression. We are a country that is divided between North and South. I think the remnants of division is a continual reminder to every person in the South that this country was colonised.

Is Boredom the main problem with depression?

I don’t think so. I think boredom is a manifestation of depression. People who are depressed don’t do a lot, they don’t socialise, they withdraw. I think boredom is an outmoded term. It doesn't’t describe very much. Do people have the right to chill out and relax? Yes. Boredom has so many negative connotations.

Yes it is associated with existential angst and the famous quarter-life crisis, the idea that young people today find it difficult to get their teeth into anything?

Three most important things for a human being is self-love, inner peace and a sense of direction. That’s the problem for young people. They find it very very difficult to develop a sense of direction. Because their consciousness is very different from the consciousness of their parents and yet it is their parents who are holding power, their parent's generation who are running the schools… Young adults don’t feel like they can bring about a change.

I mean how could you in this country when you have people like Bertie Ahern and Michael McDowell and Mary Harney…Look at the the political system of this country – it’s completely sealed and closed to the consciousness of young people. The school system is something that belongs to the 1950’s. Its out-dated. Young kids don’t want to go into work and work 40,50,60 hours a day, they want a lot more flexibility. They want to be able to travel and they are being trapped in the old adult world – you must have a car, you must have a house. And these young brilliant minds are being trapped in this antiquated archaic system…and you have really creative people working in banks when they would prefer to be making music or films. They would prefer to be involved in sports. There is no place for the creative genius in this country. I look at my kids and they’re brilliant and they can’t find anyway of expressing that brilliance in the structure that exists at the moment. Young children are traveling at 7 am on buses to go into a school where they are treated in a way that is incongruous to their belief systems…and what is even more hideous is that the school system are now saying to these kids who don’t connect with the antiquated methods that there is something wrong with you – you have ADD. And now schools are becoming asylums where medication is being prescribed because young people are disturbed by an educational system they do not fit into. Thousands of kids are being treated with anti-depressants and Ritolin in order to fit in. It’s appalling.

Combating world Conflict?

The war in the Middle East is actually coming out of a thought bubble. The deaths happening over there  are not because of hunger, starvation and tsunami or natural disasters. They are happening because of thought. Most of the suffering in the world is happening because of thought, an inability to share. I don’t believe we live in a capitalist society - we live in a greed society. If we lived in a capitalist society we would be giving money from the 1st world to the 3rd world, so people from the 3rd world could buy goods from the 1st world. In other words, share the money. We do not know how to share love or education, and ressources..It’s greed.  What’s the difference between the desire to earn 100 million and 400 million. Who needs 300 more? Where is that money coming from? Why is it being taken out of circulation? I was in Africa where I watched people die, because food and medication wasn't being given. I went to the world health organisation, and Rwanda during the war, and no one wanted to do anything. The UN wouldn't even move on the notion of genocide. Everybody knows…as Leonard Cohen would say…the ship is sinking.So change has to come about through consciousness and open heart - people should practice Buddha consciousness.

 

Cicero in Ancient Rome believed in an ethical code governing man internally as did Kant.Do you think we are born principled?

Every child that is born is born with the gift of creativity, adventure, curiosity and love. Children have so much going for them. And then when you look at old people, they close in and they close in and they lose all the gifts that they were born with and all the potential that they were born with, and they just are sitting around waiting to drop off the perch. Where has the wisdom gone, where has the love gone? Where has the adventure gone? Human beings are fundamentally beautiful and fundamentally good. Hundreds of million years have gone into the evolution of the human state. We have had belief systems in place which are temporary, for instance the Nazis and the Third Reich wanted humans to be a certain way, that was all based on belief systems.

How to you think an anarchic system would approach the mental health care system?

Anarchy means “No king”. How would an anarchistic society relate to mental health? Well they would see the present mental health system as being completely alien to what it is to be a human being. That it is repressive, that it promotes slavery, that it promotes addiction, it promotes repression and it takes away human rights and it would point that out very very clearly- and that the psychiatric service that exists at the moment is anti-liberation, anti-human being and anti-individuality .If they had the power and the means they would over-throw it. Its so obvious that it’s not working, it’s so obvious that it is broken, that people are suffering because of it and in an anarchist state it would be dissolved over night. Psychiatric hospitals closed. Drug companies driven out. People would be related to as individuals.

What about people who embrace the label of being mentally ill, seeing it as a way to self-define, to allot a purpose?

That’s part of the indoctrination. The church indoctrinated us, the imperialist society indoctrinated us, we’ve been indoctrinated by the pharmaceutical companies. Young people are not being taught, to stand back, and respect their own individuality, practice responsibility, respect their own autonomy, realise that there is no-one like them on the planet and actually take control and that’s what we’ve got to start teaching our young people so that they look at the service that exists at the moment and say “I don’t need that. I don’t have to go there”. I don’t think any young teenager in this country would get interested in joining the army in a war against somebody else. And  no body is not going to have sex because there was this archaic notion that you shouldn't’t have sex before marriage. The stage will come eventually that what they are being offered by pharmaceutical companies will be seen as rubbish. Its “flat earth” versus “round earth”. The psychiatric service is heading for the iceberg…they don’t see it, all they’re doing is arranging the deck chairs on the ship that is inevitably going to sink. But let’s free the young people. Let’s free the old people who are being zombified in old homes.

 

In your opinion to what extent have humans evolved in terms of Freedom and Identity, and equality?

As I was saying human beings are a work in progress. I think in terms of evolution, we have moved into the realm of the heart. The age of Aquarius, symbolized by the year 2000, means that human beings are moving out of the Iron age - the 3rd chakra and have moved into the heart. The future is bright. We’re traveling, we’re journeying, we’re on the move, we’re changing and we will get more peaceful. This is just the last throws of the mechanical, industrial, ego based system . We‘re going to move into heart consciousness, there is no doubt about that. There’s room for great optimists. Psychiatry is so important and it should be grounded in philosophy, in hope and in the heart. It should be grounded in the notion that every single being’s experience is unique. However if you look at the Middle-Eastern problem you have to look at it and as the collective consciousness of the world. What is being played out is an aspect of every single one of us. We’re all there. Our anger is there. Our fear is there, our paranoia is there, we’ve got to look at this conflict in a  much more interconnected way and of how archetypal we all are. I mean who are selling the weapons to the Hizbollah? Who is selling the weapons to the the Israelis. The United Nations is dysfunctional. It shouldn't’t be in New York.

In terms of personal identity, if we are going to evolve we have to place identity in our hearts. Not in our thinking and our belief systems, not in our emotions and our feelings, not in our behaviors and in our roles. We have to place our identity in our hearts. If you do this, then there is a possibility that you may be able to transcend and move into spirit. You won’t achieve this by going through your mind and your roles. Look at all the religions in the world they are all so dysfunctional because they are not heart based, they are mind based. They are based on archaic fundamental ideas and that’s why in conflict we are failing, and that’s why the body politique is in a terrible state. Giving and taking resources, sharing resources, and exchanging ideas. That’s what the body politique should be about…not greed, violence or hate but the collective consciousness. It's not about war and armament. I see the pharmaceutical industry like the armament industry – it's about making money.The share holders don’t give a damn whether its Katyusha rockets or Prozac.

Why has money become more important?

Because these people do not have a sense of soul, journey or spirit. They believe that the only measure of success is on the outside, that the locus of control is on the outside. Without being clichéd about this…the only measure of success is happiness, and happiness is an inside job. Happiness can only be attained by the journey within, not by houses or by cars. We’ve got it back to front…I have hope that even with the Celtic Tiger and all its conspicuous consumptions, people will realise there is enough money to go around and we will begin to look at philosophy and creativity, at the personal and then the collective level. It can be flipped over so easily.

Are their any political systems or democracies in the world today that you admire?

The Northern countries. I think Sweden is pretty cool, Norway, Finland Denmark. I have never been anywhere else that I think is in anyway democratic. But certainly those northern countries have a huge amount to offer. Holland: in how it looks after people. Old Africa the way it existed has an awful lot to offer. In so- called modern society...you would have to go to Finland…and maybe New Zealand…it's  very fair and democratic .It was the first country in the world that get the vote for women. It has very radical laws about family and separation, divorce and maybe the best mental health services in the world.

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INTERVIEW: SUSAN MCFEELY - REGIONAL OFFICER SCHIZOPHRENIA IRELAND*

Why did you organise the Healing of Mental Distress Seminar with Dr. Michael Corry?

SM: We are an umbrella group called the Alliance for Mental Health (within that there are nine or ten mental health organisations) we do a lot of promotion for mental health and we were trying to take away the stigma, trying to unite the mental and physical body and not keep dividing it like our country does all the time. It was about mental health or mental distress and how it can impact on one’s life. We were trying to normalise mental health and explain that it’s not this aloof thing that everyone seems to think it is.

Universities introducing mental health facilities – good or bad?

It’s good on one hand that they are acknowledging a need for it. But I would rather see it as just one of the other facets of student services. Technically, to create something like that – people will see people going there – and that will make them stand out and lead into this idea of a stigma again. Its really important that the services are combined not differentiated and that the real expertise are there.

There is a story of a young student who had experienced a panic attack and who was given strong medication and ended up on a hospital bed?

Someone would want to be in a lot of distress for medication to be used, I would suggest for someone who has a panic attack, [that] they should have an opportunity to talk their problem through with someone. This problem is indicative of the attitude in Ireland: that the only solution is medication. Anything else afterwards – if you’re lucky – and if it’s even available – you get. If not you don’t. To compare it with Physical health…if one has a back injury – you go, get accessed, you get therapy and medication. If you are depressed you may or may not be offered therapy. If you are very unwell mentally in this country you will get medication only. If you are very very lucky you may get a community nurse that might support you or social worker but really you are on your own. You are asking people who are already struggling with life to try and get on with it anyway. It’s not real. It’s setting people up to fail. Only some people can survive in this system.

 

What services are available to people without money who need help?

We have free council ling that is donation based here in Schizophrenia Ireland for people who suffer from a mental illness. You will find that there are community partnerships and inner city partnerships who will have sliding scale. Usually there is a good background and quality. The Living Life service in Bray Co.Wicklow, is free or donation based but it takes a few weeks to get an appointment. But on the whole they match the person with the therapist.

No-one ever uses telephone service – do they?

The Samaritans is actually the busiest line. They are a pure listening service. They are 24 hours. I don’t think these types of service are over utilised. They could be used a bit more.

Why are G.P’s allowed administer drugs that alter your state of consciousness?

G.P’s prescribe because they want to contain the problem so the person doesn't’t have to go through the mental health services. Secondly, in my experience a lot of G.P’s do refer on. They refer because it’s a short -term solution but unfortunately it doesn't work like that. It ends up being long -term.

Do you know if there is much of a difference in how mental health is approached in other European countries?

Absolutely, it’s a bit like what Michael said in the talk when mental distress is acknowledged as an emotion and not a disease, things will change. France is fantastic in one way…they have the tradition of Jacques Lacan – where psychotherapists from the past believed in psychotherapy for treating psychosis which is frowned upon here. In this country, they do not think that talking therapies work for Schizophrenia and other psychosis, and that talking will make them worse.
In regards to people with depression, I think there’s still a bit of stigma in this country about the idea of attending councilors. I don’t even know if that goes the whole way through the medical system. Here there is a connotation that there might be something really wrong – if you admit to feeling low.

As for other countries, I was involved in a project with the EU and the Leonardo Da Vinci Fund. We tried to design a Pan-European education program that looked not only at recovery of the person with self-experience but also for the families. In that time I got a fairly good idea of what was going on in different countries. Ireland was doing quite well in comparison to Spain and Italy. France was more advanced because they have such a culture of psychotherapy. Slovenia and Slovakia had nothing. This education course was going to be the beginning for them. In Slovakia, they also function under the model of the American medical system where you have to pay medical insurance. I would say there is a huge deficit in every country. Some would argue that the U.K is a lot more advanced than other places.

What about social fabric – surely a strong community will deal with mental health better – people will be there for each other and professionals won’t be needed?

I agree, that even in Ireland, in certain communities it’s easier to experience a mental health issue. Even the professionals are community based- we are losing what we once had. It’s a big struggle for people now.

What about alcohol – is this being recognised by the government and your organisation as a handicap in solving the mental health issue?

YES. Absolutely. I don’t think anyone in this country can deny it’s a problem. We have a huge huge problem. For everybody, it’s always the chicken and the Egg, - did the mental health come first or the alcohol problem. If anyone has to drink or take drugs – they are dampening down something or trying to make themselves feel better at some level and I would argue that the “issue” came first. Working here with Schizophrenia, alcohol is a huge problem because of the medication being so strong people are advised not to drink at all…but they just want to be normal…and so they end up self-medicating with alcohol.

Do you think the government realise that to combat mental health issues they have to combat social issues?

I think the times are changing – when Visions for Change is published here, I reckon people will realise that we are in huge trouble right now in the mental health services.
The belief in knowing it and the commitment to it or two very different things. Although they have committed to 150 million that’s still only a tip of the ice burg. I think  mental health is high on the agenda now but it still needs to be prioritised and NOT segregated. If we start talking about it with kids and give children strategies very early on and explain that it isn't such a big deal that its all part of the human condition, the normalisation of the services will happen too.

If social conditioning is a principle cause of depression – how do you expect young people to break out of it –if it’s the system that’s in place?

I think if we started educating in school much earlier. We started valuing and not devaluing our children. “Survival of the fittest” is very much alive in the Irish school system; So I think if we created a very positive image through-out schooling. You won’t be able to escape all the social stereotypes but it will help. Also unfortunately, no one can judge the issues that go on in some homes and at some levels you only do so much prevention.

Should Mental health be taught in schools?

You know, I never even heard of mental health issues until I was in university. People only come here to us because a leaflet has popped through their door. Lack of resources are making teachers sacrifice courses like “mental health matters” for the main curriculum. It would be better if real people could explain to students their experiences and we weren't relying on the teachers already in place.

Do you know why Western medicine is so unwilling to accept that sickness is related to the mind and is this why mental health is so misunderstood?

I met a French person recently in Holland. Lacanian psycho-analysis is huge in Ireland too at the moment, she couldn't’t believe that Anglo-Saxon culture could identify with it because it’s so philosophical and it’s about speech and language. Yes, I think we have a problem in the West and here in Ireland, in our absolute inability to accept that something can go wrong, and that when it does one can recover. We need to get away from this traditional medical model that’s only one component of healing.
We need to change medical schools and nursing schools. We need to show that one way is  NOT the only way. We need choices and options. There was resistance to our center because our two psychiatrists use Lacanian psychoanalysis. It’s not considered to work with schizophrenia - cognitive therapy is very measurable and psycho-analysis isn't.

Do you think all mental illness is linked to our emotions? And can you then organise this into degrees of emotional trauma?

I do acknowledge that bio-chemistry is playing a role but that emotions trigger this. In schizophrenia it’s regarded that people are born with a predisposition to it and then trauma or drug abuse or bullying trigger it and it can take years. I believe all mental illnesses are all connected to a reason/event/feeling. There is an emotional content to all of them.

How do people afford or approach Alternative medicine?

It is an issue. Health insurance are at least now covering homeopathic medicine and acupuncture .We have Yoga teachers who donate to this particular center. Some alternative practitioners would only take on some mentally ill patients if they are on medication because they wouldn't want to do them a disservice.

How do you protect friends and family who go see professional help and are misdiagnosed with a serious mental condition?

You can’t. There are times when patients do have symptoms. But hopefully they will have friends who can be there for them to talk about the proposed treatments. Or maybe they will be lucky enough to have a doctor who has a more holistic approach.

Some people can get very stubborn and self-righteous about their label of a mental condition and don’t want to let go of it, they think it adds to their individuality. They then can attach something more glamorous to the idea of having a mental condition. When in fact they are just different. They are just human.

There is an Australian psychiatrist called Patrick McGory who said it is really important that we don’t start classification on eccentric people. There are eccentric people everywhere where there is NO mental health issue there at all. It’s very easy for them to get drawn into the world of psycho-analysis. People like that tend to go through the mental health system but will still question the diagnosis and end up at our door or in councilors. And they work out their own problems.

Not every-one will question their diagnosis?

Usually someone who voluntarily seeks therapy will be enlightened to a certain extent. Most others have to become very unwell before they end up in therapy via hospital.

Should you be afraid of a schizophrenic?

Someone with schizophrenia would injure them-selves more than you. Only a feeling of extreme danger would make them feel insecure enough to even act this out. 39,000 people have schizophrenia in Ireland but only 47 people are living in the mental hospital. Their illness is just an extension of their personality.

HOW CAN YOU HELP?

If you live in Ireland: Volunteers can contact the center for support group training, help-line and awareness training.

READING: The “Talking about choice” document; Is that me? By Anthony Scott.
Reecent works by Dr. Pat Bracken, and Dr. Corry.

 

* www.sirl.ie = Schizophrenia Ireland