What is Bipolar / Manic Depression ?

“Giving someone a Psychiatric diagnosis is an immensely powerful act which has profound implications for their identity, relationships place in the community, employment, health and future” Lucy Johnstone, clinical Psychologist

Bipolar / Manic Depression can involve extremes of high and low mood, including depression and periods of elation, over activity and irritability (mania). A person’s sleep can be affected, sleeping more when depressed or not feeling the need for much sleep when in mania or hypomania (the word used to describe a milder version of mania). They can lose the concept of money and spending. As well as lose the sense of time. Some people also experience psychosis (a temporary loss of touch with so called reality).

Depression can be caused by a number of things including poor nutrition, unresolved trauma from childhood, poverty, unemployment, work related stress, lifestyle choices, life circumstances and thought processes.

Manic Depression can impact a person’s life in several ways, so it is important when the symptoms first develop that the person gets the empathy and understanding they need, as well as the most accurate and honest information available. How the first episode is dealt with can have a big impact on the speed of recovery and potential future episodes.

What causes Manic Depression / Bipolar ?

When it comes to Manic Depression, no true biomarkers have been found and no genetic abnormalities have been reliably identified. “A biological marker is an identifiable biological abnormality that consistently and reliably demonstrates the presence of a particular disease … The lack of any investigative tests relative to the diagnosis and management of Psychiatric disorders is striking” Dr Terry Lynch [1]

We are told that Manic Depression is a “disease” yet there is no evidence there to back this up.

The drugs used to treat mania / psychosis are basically strong tranquilizers eg Olanzapine, Quetiapine etc Some people claim that Lithium helps. Others feel it doesn’t. (See my blog on Lithium).

In my experience, there is a lot more to be gained from looking from an environmental and emotional perspective. Including addressing lifestyle issues.

When it comes to the “chemical imbalance” theory, it is not possible to measure neurotransmitter levels in the brain of a live human. Information sources e.g. brochures sponsored by drug companies, make unscientific and unproven claims that anti-depressants rebalance brain neurotransmitter levels.

However, it’s been known since at least 2001 that anti-depressants, instead of bringing “balance”, can lead to mania & psychosis in some people [2]. These drugs do not “unmask” serious mental health conditions, as some Psychiatrists try to claim. They cause them.

Potential adverse effects of anti-depressants are not highlighted enough to ensure the person has informed consent. “Anti-depressants” can turn mild / moderate, temporary feelings of Depression into a more chronic condition called tardive dysphoria, according to medical journalist Robert Whitaker and his research. This has been my experience of the drug Citalopram [3].

While I can’t seem to find the exact link at the moment, I came across this information on a drug safety website [4] ~ “Prior to initiating treatment with an antidepressant, patients with depressive symptoms should be adequately screened to determine if they are at risk for bipolar disorder; such screening should include a detailed psychiatric history, including a family history of suicide, bipolar disorder, and depression”.

According to Dr John Studd, in women sometimes severe Premenstral tension is misdiagnosed as Bipolar with tragic consequences “It is not known how frequently severe PMS is misdiagnosed as bipolar disease by Psychiatrists but it does occur” [5]

In the current system people are told that Bipolar is a life long illness that will require medication for life. Such a prognosis, while being very lucrative for the pharma industry, can be a life sentence for many and also takes away hope of true healing. With the right information and knowledge, healing is possible.

In her book clinical Psychologist Lucy Johnstone highlights that the process of recovery has to start with the most accurate description of what is going on for the person [6]. In the current system this sometimes gets hidden, overlooked or forgotten, in the rush to label and prescribe psychoactive drugs.

I have another blog entitled Tips on dealing with symptoms of Bipolar where you can get more information. I found the book by Declan Henry called Why Bipolar? to be very good. A review of this book that I wrote can be found here [7]. The work of Sean Blackwell was a big part of my own recovery journey, as I was left to deal with my last episode of mania/psychosis alone, back in December 2012. Not something I recommend but I didn’t really have a choice in the matter. I got through it and haven’t experienced it since [8]. Dr Terry Lynch has also a great insight into Bipolar and has set up online courses [9].

In the field of mental health people need to be as informed as possible as some day, without much warning, we can find ourselves, a relative or a friend coming in contact with the current mental health system. While some people may feel they benefit from been told they have Bipolar, in my experience with the stroke of a pen a Psychiatrist can change a person’s life. The diagnosis may not have been a correct one. Something I’ve explored in previous blogs. For nearly a decade I’ve been left picking up the pieces of my own life. I am a work in progress but getting there. On one levels it has been a Spiritual journey.

{ Important Do not stop or change prescribed psychoactive drugs without consulting your prescriber, due to the dangers of withdrawal. Any changes need to take place under the supervision of an expert. Some people may feel they benefit from Lithium or other drugs I mention here. What I discuss in part of this blog is my own experience and is not medical advice. We all have our own unique journey.}

Note ~ ‘Psychosis’ does not necessarily mean the person will become violent, even though that is how it is portrayed in the media and by some Psychiatrists in the courts. We are not always given the full picture e.g. what drugs or alcohol the person was taking and the effect withdrawal from or stopping drugs, both prescribed and illicit, can have on the person’s mental state.


[1] Depression Delusion: The Myth of the Brain Chemical Imbalance ~


My review of this book ~ www.goodreads.com/user/show/46943899-anne

[2] Antidepressant-associated Mania and Psychosis resulting in Psychiatric admissions, 2001

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11235925 (Yale study)

[3] Now Antidepressant-Induced Chronic Depression Has a Name: Tardive Dysphoria, 2011

by medical journalist Robert Whitaker


[4] An independent drug safety website to help you weigh the benefits of any medication against its potential dangers. www.rxisk.org

[5] Severe PMS and Bipolar Disease – a tragic confusion, Dr. John Studd


[6] A Straight Talking Introduction to Psychiatric Diagnosis by Lucy Johnstone

My review of this book ~

[7] My review of Why Bipolar? by Declan Henry ~


[8] Sean Blackwell’s work ~ www.youtube.com/user/bipolarorwakingup

Corrina Rachel speaking to Sean Blackwell about Bipolar ~

~ www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLIeS6idzD4

[9] Dr. Terry Lynch has information and courses on the topic of Manic Depression / Bipolar ~


Other useful Resources

Most people labelled as having Depression have suffered grief that hasn’t been resolved”
www.herald.ie/lifestyle/health-beauty/most-people-labelled-as-having-depression-have-suffered-grief-that-hasnt-been-resolved-31216116.html (Prof Ivor Browne, 2015)

“Every third person who comes to me now is labelled Bipolar … If you looked back, that was once considered a rare condition and what’s more, most people eventually recovered”

Psychiatry in Context : Experience, Meaning & Communities by Dr Philip Thomas


My review of this book ~ www.goodreads.com/user/show/46943899-anne

The Myth of the chemical cure’ Dr Joanna Moncrieff ~


Joanna Moncrieff – The Myth of the Chemical Cure: The Politics of Psychiatric Drug Treatment


The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive presented by Stephen Fry


Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal A Guide for Prescribers, Therapists, Patients and their Families



Electric Convulsive Therapy

I am now a sadder but a wiser woman, and one who can say with certainty that knowledge and freedom are happiness” Hannah Greally

I won’t be writing very much about Electric Shock / Electric Convulsive Therapy (ECT), but have included information from 3 Psychiatrists and a Psychiatric survivor. Dr Michael Corry, Prof Ivor Browne, Dr Bob Johnson and survivor Mary Maddock.

I sat beside a lady in a private hospital that was going through this treatment. She wasn’t allowed in the garden. My heart went out to her and I started to realise what type of place I was in. I found out later it had one of the highest rates of ECT in the country !

I also watched a documentary on mental health where a woman seemed to benefit from Electric shock but by the end of the programme she had “relapsed”. So what appeared initially to be a “miracle cure” seemed very much short lived.

I would suggest writing an Advance Directive and specifying whether or not ECT would be a treatment option that you find acceptable. 

Information that may be of use

1) Barbaric age of electric shock ‘cure’ must vanish by Dr Michael Corry ~


2) “Over many years studies of ECT have shown no long-term benefit, only a temporary relief of symptoms due to confusion and brain damage”. Ivor finishes with this line “The only real, lasting change comes when we help a person to bring about the painful work of change within themselves”

Prof Ivor Browne (June 2008) ~


3) An informed consent form for Electric shock treatment by Psychiatrist Dr Bob Johnson ~


 4) Mary Maddock: a survivor of ECT and decades of Psychiatric drugging ~


5) A 16-year-old girl with severe depression associated with an eating disorder is to receive up to 12 sessions of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT)


{ I would love to know where this young girl is now and how she is doing. I know of another young girl who had a cocktail of drugs forced upon her via the High Court. I went to see her recently. She is damaged and suffering on a daily basis. Now age 20 ! Her family has also suffered. I won’t go into much detail at the moment. There has to be a more humane way of helping our young people. }

6) Soul Survivor by Mary Maddock, 2006 ~


When it comes to modern day Psychiatry in Ireland this is what Sligo woman, Psychiatric survivor, long term activist and author of Soul Survivor Mary Maddock had to say:

“very little if anything, has changed over the last thirty years. The ‘experts’ still call the shots. The medical model is dominant, the ‘chemical imbalance’ theory is still propounded, depression is still a ‘disease’ and drugs are still the main form of treatment. More and more ‘disorders’ are being invented to be treated with more and more drugs, to the delight of the pharmaceutical companies whose profits grow and grow. Every year, a new crop of patients join the conveyor belt, just as we did in 1976. Pre-teen children are prescribed Ritalin. ‘A pill for every ill’ is becoming the norm. And yet, despite all that, two stark facts remain – 70% of admissions to psychiatric hospitals are re-admissions and the suicide rate in Ireland has never been higher”.

7) Bird’s Nest Soup by Hannah Greally, 1971 ~



In memory of my sane father who was a gentle man and should be turning 77 tomorrow. He was subjected to this barbaric treatment back in 1970s Ireland and possibly the early 1980s. It affected his memory. Rest in Peace.



Tips on dealing with symptoms of Bipolar

“Honour the physical temple that houses your body by eating healthfully, exercising, listening to your body’s needs and treating it with dignity and love” Wayne Dyer

One way to manage Mania is not to engage too much with the Ego. I learned about the Ego in Eckhart Tolle’s book A New Earth [1]. “Unless you know the basic mechanics of the ego, it will trick you into identifying with it again and again”.

Other ways of managing the highs and lows of Manic Depression ~

  • Learn about nutrition & cook nutritious meals. Watch diet and sugar intake. Take a good quality multi-vitamin (without copper). Learn about foods that help to balance mood [2]

  • Work on developing self-awareness, as sometimes awareness is lost during an episode e.g. with money & spending. Learn to recognise the symptoms at an early stage and use techniques to get some balance back. Keeping a journal.

  • When you develop self-knowledge, work with that knowledge and try not to repeat past mistakes

  • Use a calendar or yearly diary / planner to track changes in symptoms

  • Don’t be seduced by the “high” as it can be very seductive. Try not to feed it and not to over-stimulate yourself.

  • Mind yourself and take it easy, but at the same time have goals

  • Avoid alcohol or street drugs. Alcohol is like adding fuel to the fire. It can make the highs higher and the lows lower.

  • Learn about WRAP (Wellness Recover Action Plan) and have a WRAP plan [3]. The plan needs to be very specific about the steps you need to take to alleviate low or overly elevated mood.

  • Develop self confidence and a sense of Self [4]

  • Try to create a support network made up of people who are understanding of the symptoms and supportive of your healing journey. Join a support group.

  • Work on relaxation daily e.g. daily meditation, Yoga

  • Drink enough water

  • Stay hopeful for Recovery and healing. Visualise the end result.

  • Bibliotherapy ~ reading books can help with mood but some of what’s learned from books will need to be put into action for the knowledge to be effective.

  • Develop structure in the day and week. Manage time as much as possible. Use a diary.

  • Write down important things that need to be done each week.

  • Work with your skills, strengths and creativity

  • Work towards achieving balance in the various areas of life. The Happiness Habit identifies the following areas ~ Career & Finance, Personal development, Health & Fitness, Spiritual, Contribution, Family & Social, Fun & Creativity, Mental & Emotional [5]

  • Ask yourself the question if you had only one month to live what would you do

  • Learn to replace bad habits with more useful habits and build this into a daily routine

  • Reward yourself each time you make progress and remind yourself how much better you are getting. When it comes to any setbacks be gentle and kind to yourself, like you would be with a good friend. Pick up the pieces and start again.

  • Learn how to self-sooth in positive ways. This can be written into a WRAP plan, which I have already mentioned.

  • Let go of Perfectionism

  • Accept where you are on your journey

  • Try not to be too self-critical

  • Develop a good sleeping pattern and wind down in the evening

  • Avoid too much stimulants e.g. a doctor once advised me that I should have only one coffee a day and in the morning

  • Identify and resolve triggers, including those that can trigger strong emotions and learn constructive ways of dealing with this.

  • If there is trauma from the past or issues that need to be discussed, some Psychotherapy and/or counseling can be helpful.

  • People need to feel that their life has meaning and a purpose and to be able to make a contribution to their community [6]. This may be through paid work or voluntarily. It may not be possible to work, but having a part-time or full-time job can give the week structure. Some jobs are more stressful than others, so that needs to be factored in. People should not be pressured about their work status but instead should be gently encouraged or told about potential opportunities that are out there. Trying to intimidate a person about their work status can be very unhelpful. Some people are doing their best. Their is a lot of social stigma out there relating to unemployment.

There is an energy that comes from a mild ‘high’ (hypomania) that just needs to be channeled in the right direction. I try to be self-aware of my mood and take corrective action. Even 10 mins of Yoga and some meditation can help ground me.

Recovery and healing usually just doesn’t happen. Time has to be made for it. Changes need to be made in daily and weekly routines. Sacrifices may have to be made to make progress. The body needs balance and depends on biorhythms. Regular eating and sleeping patterns are important. And routine.

“A person should be enabled to reach a point of inner peace, self-empowerment and contentment” Dr Terry Lynch [7]

* This list is a work in progress


[1] A New Earth Eckhart Tolle, 2009

[2] Action plan for Bipolar ~

[3] Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) by Mary Ellen Copeland et al


WRAP Crisis Plan & Working Through Hard Times (includes link to pdf)

[4] Selfhood by Dr Terry Lynch, 2011 (includes practical exercises to work through)


[5] The Happiness Habit by Brian Colbert, 2010

See exercise on pg. 79 (Cutting the cord) and The Magpie Technique (involves recognising achievements in life)

[6] Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl (first published in 1946) ~

www.amazon.com/Mans-Search-Meaning-VThe Happiness Habitiktor-Frankl/dp/080701429X

Viktor Frankl was a Psychiatrist that survived the concentration camps in WWII

[7] Depression Delusion: The Myth of the Brain Chemical Imbalance by Dr Terry Lynch, 2015


Other Resources

Dr. Terry Lynch has information and courses on the topic of Manic Depression / Bipolar ~


Why Bipolar by Declan Henry, 2013 ( I highly recommend this good book)


Antidepressant-associated mania and psychosis resulting in psychiatric admissions.

Yale study (2001) ~ www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11235925

Think Twice: How the Gut’s “Second Brain” Influences Mood and Well-Being


Sean Blackwell’s work (which I found very useful) www.youtube.com/user/bipolarorwakingup

Corrina Rachel speaking to Sean Blackwell about Bipolar


How to Avoid a Manic Episode ~ www.bpso.org/nomania.htm

I agree with some but not all of what’s in this link but it has useful tips e.g. Reduce stimulation and decrease activity

GROWing towards recovery: a re-enchantment with life – Mike Watts ~


Mary Maddock: a survivor of ECT and decades of Psychiatric drugging ~


Council for Evidence Based Psychiatry ~

The Feel Good Factor: 10 Proven Ways to Feel Happy and Motivated by Patrick Holford, 2011


The Feeling Good Handbook by David D. Burns, 1999 (CBT ~ Cognitive Behaviour Therapy)


The Power of your subconscious mind by Joseph Murphy (first published 1963) ~


The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families by Stephen Covey, 1998


Your Best Year Yet by Jinny Ditzer (2006)


Suicide remains a taboo subject, something few people are prepared to talk about


Men’s Sheds ~ www.menssheds.ie/

Severe PMS (Pre-menstral tension) misdiagnosed as Bipolar http://www.studd.co.uk/bipolar.php

Soteria ~ a network of people in the UK promoting the development of drug-free and minimum medication therapeutic environments for people experiencing ‘psychosis’ or extreme states www.soterianetwork.org.uk

A collection of resources on Open Dialogue and Open Dialogue practices ~


8 Tips to Help Stop Ruminating ~

Fish oil Bipolar treatment benefits ~ www.bipolar-lives.com/fish-oil-bipolar.html

The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive presented by Stephen Fry


Bipolar InOrder by Tom Wootton et al ~


Moving From Bipolar Disorder To Bipolar IN Order ~


Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal A Guide for Prescribers, Therapists, Patients and their Families

by Dr Peter Breggin, 2012



To write about the subject of Lithium I have consulted Dr David Healy’s book “Mania: A Short History of Bipolar Disorder” [1]. Some quotes and information at the start of this blog are from his book. I am in awe at the level of detail and research that must have gone into it.

As an alkaline substance, Lithium was initially used to treat gout and rheumatic conditions. “While using Lithium to treat gout, Garrod reported that patients often showed a general sense of well-being”, pg. 92. Considering the more recent knowledge about inflammation that functional medicine doctors discuss, I find this fact interesting.

“The key individual in the emergence of a prophylactic use of Lithium for mood disorders is Carl Georg Lange”, pg. 94. Another person to use Lithium with some success in treating Manic symptoms in patients was John Cade in Australia. However the toxic effect of Lithium carbonate caused the death of some of his patients. “The use of Lithium was linked to cardiac difficulties and it was banned by the FDA in 1949 … The question of toxicity highlighted the need to establish a safe dose and to be able to monitor treatment”.

“But consider what makes for a placebo response. The natural history of mood disorders means that many will improve within a few weeks whether treated or not. It is also widely thought that sensible clinical advice on matters of diet, life-style, alcohol intake, and work and relationship problem solving may make a difference. It is suspected that patients’ perceptions that they are being cared for by a medical expert may make a difference, and this effect may be enhancing by being given a substance they think will restore chemical imbalance to normal – even if that imbalance is mythical and the substance is placebo. The fact that the patients present themselves for treatment may also make a difference. All of these factors are reflected in the placebo response. But it is not possible to quantify the distinct contribution of these components” pg. 129.

I now want to talk about my own experience with Lithium and some of the things I learned when on it. It may under certain conditions lead to kidney damage and/or damage to the thyroid. If a woman becomes pregnant on Lithium it can damage the developing foetus.

In 2008, after my Adverse Drug Reaction to the anti-depressant Citalopram and when mainstream Psychiatry had hastily labelled me “Bipolar 1” (while ignoring advice in DSM-IV-TR) I was put on Lithium [3]. According to this book, “Bipolar 1” only affects about 1 in 100,000 people, so it is a rare condition. I’ve also learned that from Prof Ivor Browne. From my reading, I do believe that the overuse of anti-depressants is one of the factors in the current Bipolar “epidemic”.

When I was introduced to Lithium, it appeared to be informed consent at the time. Someone talked to me about this drug and I was given some material to read, but it wasn’t true informed consent. I wasn’t fully aware of the truly toxic nature of this drug. I was put on 1000 mg and ended up on that dosage for nearly 2 years. I had regular blood tests to see if the the Lithium levels were in the so called therapeutic range, as well as thyroid function tests.

After the anti-depressant Citalopram caused mania / psychosis or what I refer to as “SSRI induced Bipolar type symptoms” in August 2008, I have 9 foolscap pages showing the large cocktail of expensive drugs I was on from when I left hospital in October 2008 up until August 2011. While on Lithium (and Seroquel) I had a long Manic episode in 2010, for about 3 months. I don’t remember Seroquel having any benefit at all. I don’t feel that Lithium did anything for me therapeutically either, in a true sense. I was eventually switched from Seroquel to Olanzapine in June 2010 and things improved i.e. I eventually came out of that horrendous episode, which may have seemed fun at the time but I also remember feeling that I just wanted the “manic” feeling to end.

I also decided to come off Lithium towards the end of that “episode” and I let the Psychiatrist know. I withdrew from Lithium in jumps of 200 mg, which is far too fast a rate. As I write this I wonder why the Psychiatrist didn’t give me a strict warning and a better withdrawal plan. I was still going to see him on a regular basis (up until January 2012 when I left mainstream Psychiatry behind me and their drugs, other than a few 5mg Olanzapine that I kept on standby for a while but then they eventually went out of date, which in hindsight meant this whole disaster was coming to some kind of ending).

When jumping down off Lithium at what I now realise was a fast rate, I would have gone into withdrawal, with all the symptoms that goes with that. I became very depressed after coming off it and, due to the brainwashing about Manic Depression, felt that this was just part of “my illness”. I was lethargic and lay in bed with not much interest in life. Based on what I now know about the complexity of the withdrawal process, I see this differently [4].

I felt that Lithium blunted my emotions and also remember the day when this “fog” lifted and I started to feel again. I cried when I realised what the drug had done to me. I regret taking Lithium.

My father was on Lithium for years and his thyroid was affected by it. While he died from prostate cancer, I sometimes wonder if the kidney failure he experienced towards the very end of his life had something to do with being on this drug long term.

An Unquiet Mind by Kay Redfield Jamison

When I first read An Unquiet Mind [2] a number of years ago, while still ingrained in the biomedical model and on the drugs, I thought it was a good book. When I re-read it recently I see things differently now, not forgetting that it’s over 2 decades since it was published (1995). Jamison is a talented writer.

When she talks about the marvelous kind of cosmic relatedness, “the webbings of the universe”, and how everything seems interrelated even when sometimes others can’t see, I can relate to that. It tries to describe in words the experience of mania / psychosis (loss of touch with so called reality), which is not so easy to write about or even to describe verbally. A person’s thoughts can become out of control and tolerance can be lacking from others.

She says in her book that she briefly took antidepressants but they only made her more dangerously agitated. She also claims that it is not uncommon for depressed doctors to prescribe anti-depressants for themselves and that the results can be disastrous.

Even though she praises Lithium as a wonder drug in her life, the efficacy and safety of Lithium is not as compelling as she claims. She also admits that she had she continued to experience fluctuations in mood while on Lithium. When she eventually had her dosage of Lithium reduced “it was as though I had taken bandages off my eyes after many years of partial blindness … I wept for the poignancy of all the intensity I had lost without knowing it and I wept for the pleasure of experiencing it again … the subtle, dreadful muffling of the senses”. I can relate to this when I think back to the time I was coming off Lithium.

Dr Jamison talks about the mind healing if it is given a chance. She also mentions how important love is in the healing process and that it can act as a very strong medicine.  The love and support of others helped her through.

Several times she refers to the hereditary nature of Manic Depression and she mentions ongoing genetic research, but in reality no true bio-markers have been found. Even today over two decades later. While Dr Yolande Lucire has discovered that there can be a problem metabolizing the drugs and there may be a genetic aspect to that [5], in general nothing of real significance has materialised because of genetic research into Manic Depression / Bipolar, that I’m aware of.

She talks about the brain-damaging effects of stopping medication. While people have to be very careful changing or stopping prescribed drugs, if anything the opposite is true. The drugs cause brain damage. Olanzapine, for example, which came to the market in 1996 [6].

Changes in the brain can sometimes be explained by treatment history, as opposed to “mental illness”. Symptoms are not always beyond our control and we are not as “beholden to medication” as some would like us to believe. But that takes patience, self-discipline, persistence and daily work on physical / emotional well-being. As well as tolerance of setbacks and support from others. I do not believe it is a life long illness or disease, but if you tell your sub-conscious that it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Hope is another cornerstone of the healing process. I do feel that my symptoms were mainly iatrogenic i.e. caused by taking the SSRI anti-depressant Citalopram for anxiety (between 2005 and 2008). I haven’t experienced Mania / Psychosis in nearly 5 years (December 2012). I was prone to relapse for at least 2 years after all the drugging. I am now free of of prescribed psychoactive substances, but if I had to write how I got there I would find it difficult. Support from doctors was lacking. They seem to have no problem getting you on a drug but stopping their cocktail of drugs is frowned upon.

I still struggle with other issues e.g. sleep. I do not believe that I have Manic Depression / Bipolar. If I did I would not be ashamed to say it. But I no longer feel conditioned into believing this. I do however suffer from Tardive Dysphoria (long term, sometimes severe Depression after being through drugging and the whole ordeal). In some ways I miss the highs. I occasionally experience a mild high, but I’m not complaining. Or a bit of a mixed episode which I feel is connected to being on the drugs. Female hormones are also a factor. I’m all for personal responsibility, but the bottom line is I feel mainstream Psychiatry got it very wrong at the start and caused major, ongoing, devastating trauma in my life on many levels. I’m still coming to terms with that and learning to let go.

{ Important Do not stop or change prescribed psychoactive drugs without consulting your prescriber, due to the dangers of withdrawal. Any changes need to take place under the supervision of an expert. Some people may feel they benefit from Lithium or other drugs I mention here. What I discuss in part of this blog is my own experience and is not medical advice. We all have our own unique journey }


[1] Mania: A Short History of Bipolar Disorder by Dr David Healy (2008)


[2] An Unquiet Mind by Kay Redfield Jamison (1995)


[3] Article by Dr Peter Breggin ~

DSM-IV-TR “emphasizes that a diagnosis of Mania or Bipolar Disorder should not be made when the hypomania or mania first appears while the individual is taking a medication that can cause these symptoms”. DSM-IV-TR (2000) ~ Diagnostic and Statistics Manual. Fourth edition, text revision

[4] Coming off Psychiatric Medication ~ Advice for Prescribers ~

[5] http://www.drlucire.com/adverse-drug-reactions.html (Dr Yolande Lucire, Forensic Psychiatrist)

Dr Lucire explains that not all people are born with a full complement of metabolizing enzymes, increasing the risk of side effects which can range from mild to life-threatening. Changing dosage up or down and starting / stopping drugs are also crucial times, sometimes affecting the person months after stopping.

[6] “The Influence of Chronic Exposure to Antipsychotic Medications on Brain Size before and after Tissue Fixation…” ~ http://www.nature.com/npp/journal/v30/n9/full/1300710a.html

In 2005, a study funded by the maker of Zyprexa / Olanzapine, found that chronic / long term exposure to this major tranquilizer causes shrinkage of the brain. “significant reduction in brain volume that affects both gray and white matter”! I learned about this from honest Psychiatrists Dr Peter Breggin and Dr Joanna Moncrieff. I was put on Zyprexa, at what I now consider too high a dosage (10mg) long term in 2008! I did not have informed consent about this powerful but potentially damaging drug. Very short term use would have been enough and proper advice about withdrawal and stopping. Something I never got from a private hospital. I was let out the door with nothing but a prescription. I ran to the train and thought all was great.

2 weeks later I went into what I now know to be withdrawal and akathisia (a severe inner restlessness). I ended up back in hospital for a month, a broken woman. The year that followed is a complete blur and the last 9 years have been difficult because of what I was put through. Mainstream Psychiatrists I saw at the time withheld valuable but vital information.



Anti-depressants are great, until you have an Adverse Drug Reaction

In 2005 I was prescribed the drug Citalopram for severe anxiety / panic. In Summer of 2008 I went into Mania / Psychosis while on this drug.

A big part of the past 9 years, which should have been about healing and growth, instead was about dealing with the trauma caused by the flawed biomedical approach to mental health. My life as I knew it had ended, including my career but also my trust in others. The whole experience with mainstream Psychiatry was very dis-empowering. After hospitalisation I had lost all confidence in myself.

My anxiety had been turned into SSRI induced Manic Depression after I had taken the anti-depressant. The many powerful drugs I was subsequently put on made me feel dreadful. Zyprexa (Olanzapine),  Seroquel (Quetiapine), Lithium, Lamictal, Rivotril, sleeping pills etc 9 foolscap pages of prescriptions !

I did not want to face each day and spent a lot of time in bed due to the sedating nature of the drugs. I had a very poor Quality of Life. Doctors were oblivious to the drug’s iatrogenic effects. Iatrogenic means caused by treatment.

At a time of stress and vulnerability I expected loyalty and support. Instead I had the police on my doorstep and I was locked into a building for 3 weeks and heavily sedated for 3 years, until I finally woke up out of a drug induced haze and started to question things. There is no attempt by the systems involved to acknowledge that it could have been handled more humanely. True healing didn’t seem to be a priority. Instead I was subjected to a serious trauma in the form of forced hospitalisation.

I needed help in 2008 but not of the colluding nature provided. I needed:

  • truth and honesty about the anti-depressant drug I was on and its adverse effects

  • An Open Dialogue approach

  • Re-assurance that my stay in the hospital was temporary ( the survival part of my brain was convinced I would be there for a very long time, possibly forever. This left me in a very distressed and agitated state and naturally so)

Being in the system and the consequences of that, including the stigma, discrimination and lack of understanding of others and the effects of the drugs, was the most traumatic part of the whole experience. In our society the general public have been indoctrinated into the biomedical model, affecting how those who have experienced mental health difficulties are perceived. Social stigma can be a trigger for the person and can seriously impact and slow down the recovery process.

After receiving my records from the public system I found it hard to trust anyone. I don’t really recommend requesting your notes unless you have good support around you, as it can be a traumatic experience reading them.

It cost my private health insurer €23,000 for the State to have me incarcerated. I had not harmed myself or anyone and had no intention to do so. I was in emotional distress and reacting to a drug, that I now know was a major factor. I never got one minute of Psychotherapy and never saw a Psychologist at that time.

I have Post Traumatic Stress from that day, which can easily be triggered by certain sounds etc. I became angry once I realised I didn’t need to be put through such an ordeal. To quote from another survivor “My rebellious nature helped me through”.

I felt my initial treatment by the mental health system at a crucial time was damaging, traumatizing and very flawed. Luckily a few years into my journey and search for the truth, I was fortunate enough to make connections with some honest and dedicated medical professionals and Psychologists. Experienced experts who do not have conflicts of interest but who want the best possible outcomes for people in distress. People like Dr Terry Lynch, Prof Ivor Browne and clinical Psychologists in the UK ~ Lucy Johnstone, Anne Cooke and Peter Kinderman. As well as studying the work of honest Psychiatrists Prof David Healy (who is also a Psychopharmacologist), Dr Peter Breggin and Dr Joanna Moncrieff.

When it comes to the initial anxiety I experienced I know it’s down to proper breathing, understanding the cause of panic, talk therapy and healthy lifestyle choices. I know I won’t find the answer in a bottle of pills as I’ve been down that road, for six years in total. The drugs have damaged me but I try to focus on the concept of neuroplasticity. That doesn’t mean I have ruled out tranquilizers completely. Very short term use I mean.

I can think about forgiveness if I know that others aren’t been potentially hurt or killed. But knowing that the delusion continues and that prescription rates are going up year on year across the Western world, including potential risks to the unborn, I find it difficult to forgive such a system.

I no longer see myself as biologically or genetically flawed. There is no benefit in feeling that way when it comes to my emotional health and it is quite dis-empowering.

It can take at least 2 years to get the effects of the drugs out of a person’s system. My experience was very much misunderstood. In my experience society’s attitude to mental health continues to be backward in many ways and it is kept that way by people who profit from others distress and vulnerability. Medication is unethically prescribed and overused.

What was hospitalization like, without an Open Dialogue approach ?

I felt dis-empowered, helpless, as if everyone had turned against me, constricted, caged, my freedom taken away, agitation, pressure of speech, my every word and action observed and judged, unsafe, distressed, no autonomy, frightened, scared, angry, violated, no one seemed to understand, no empathy, felt unfairly treated, trapped, felt like I would be there forever, could see no end, dignity taken away, disbelief, stressed, anxious, in fight mode ( seeing as flight was not an option ), adrenaline pumping, found it hard to get some relief / respite from the deep distress and emotional pain I was in (other than sleep), traumatized, misunderstood. I couldn’t believe it was like this in the year 2008 and still is today.

An asylum is supposed to be a refuge, a sanctuary, a place of safety. The Acute Psychiatric Unit felt like the opposite. There was no awareness of what was really going on with me and that I was in drug withdrawal from Citalopram, which I was asked to stop cold turkey. I was exhausted. This was not the place for me. There was no understanding of what I’d been through. The instructions on the walls of one of the offices on Electric shock didn’t help. Or the sign “ECT Suite” at the main entrance. Was it left there to scare and scar people ? There was no Electric shock Suite in the building.

My Occupational therapy notes said “Fear of detention based on father’s history” yet they use the most backward method to bring me to the hospital. 10 people at the house including 2 police, 2 ambulance drivers, 2 Psychiatric nurses and 4 ‘others’. A complete over-reaction to the situation. I hadn’t harmed myself or others & had no plans to do so.

My very sane father unfortunately became a victim of this system in 1973. He was in an out of hospital throughout my childhood and then, almost miraculously, in 1983 his symptoms seemed to disappear and did so up until his early death in 1993, age 52. As recently as 2012 I believed that Manic Depression / Bipolar was genetic as that is what I was conditioned to believe all through my life. Then, in my first session with Prof Ivor Browne, I said that my father “also had Manic Depression” and I remember his “highs” an “lows”. Ivor dropped a bombshell that day that made me rethink the whole experience. He said “Your father was around in the era of medication as well !”.

Based on my own personal experience, I realise the drugs can leave you so sedated that you don’t and won’t want to get out of bed. And can also drive a person into a high. Based on the work of Dr Yolande Lucire, I now realise that it’s not necessarily Manic Depression that is genetic but some people’s ability to metabolize these mind altering drugs. And there is a genetic aspect to that. I will get into this in greater detail again.

My father was a kind and gentle man, and deserved better than what he was put through. Up to 14 pills a days and several bouts of Electric shock. Which I now know was unnecessary. I admire how he kept going and rarely complained, unlike his daughter. His favourite saying was “It could be worse”. I get emotional writing this, realising that he should be turning 77 in just a few days. He never got to meet his grandchildren but I do feel he is still around in spirit. Even if he passed away at least a quarter of a century before his time.

Getting back to my own experience, the one thing that struck me about my own notes is the many factual errors. The private hospital more or less painted me as an academic failure even though I have a 2.1 Honors Degree in Computer Science, a Masters and a 2.2 Honors Degree in Primary teaching. It shows how things can be twisted in a person’s notes and misrepresent the person.

“No wish to kill anyone” is in my admission notes ! As if all people in emotional distress are potential killers (however there are cases where SSRIs and withdrawal from same have been linked to violence). The Psychiatrist that admitted me wrote “Having spoken to her she calmed down”. This was the crux of the problem. No one spoke to me properly and therapeutically. At one stage I wrote that I was wound up like a coil and that certain people wound me up again when I tried to unwind. I lost my job. I had bills to pay but the hospital was reluctant to let me out to pay them, while benefiting from my private health insurance !

Despite people thinking I did not know what was going on, I was hyper aware of what was going on on some level. I had the “insight” to stay and wait for my transfer to a private hospital.

It was such a cold, uncaring, unsympathetic place to be. Surrounded by strangers. With very little empathy. Just their trolley of “potions and poisons”. It shows how much damage doctors and the system are capable of doing to a person in distress, when brainwashed and indoctrinated into a biomedical viewpoint.

What I went through since August 2008 (health issues, brain damage from the drugs which hits me in subtle ways, tardive dysphoria, insomnia, loss of job, disconnection from family, ongoing Post Traumatic Stress) is actually a catastrophic grief / bereavement. I sometimes need to pause and reflect on that aspect of the experience. To process the grief and accept the pain. For quite a while I have been stuck in a phase of anger. Some of it justified but on the downside the anger can keep me stuck. I’m still processing and integrating the experience nearly a decade later.

While some may feel they had a positive Psychiatric experience, I remember my experience and the suffering of other Psychiatric survivors in the context of a system that has the potential to be very destructive to a person’s emotional well being. I also remember those that died. Any attempt to actively change such a system is met with resistance. I admire myself for hanging in there, and not becoming a statistic. The unbearable feelings do pass, if you can learn to sit with them or reach out for help.

Further information

Some of the many useful links & people that helped me make sense of my Life Journey

For those in emotional distress that may need a listening ear: Samaritans ~ 116 123

Antidepressants and the Placebo Effect: The Emperor’s New Drugs by Irving Kirsch, Ph.D. ~www.youtube.com/watch?v=LQ_EixhrFaw

Antidepressant-associated Mania and Psychosis resulting in Psychiatric admissions ~

Yale study (2001) ~ www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11235925

Tardive Dysphoria: Anti-depressants can turn mild/moderate Depression into a chronic condition ~

Robert Whitaker speaking in Denmark, 2012 “For so long the voice of those who have been treated has been ignored” www.youtube.com/watch?v=VgS79hz1saI

A collection of resources on Open Dialogue and Open Dialogue practices ~ http://willhall.net/opendialogue/

Mental health pilot focus of Finnish film ‘Open Dialogue’ (West Cork) ~


Soteria ~ a network of people in the UK promoting the development of drug-free and minimum medication therapeutic environments for people in distress ~ www.soterianetwork.org.uk

Think Twice: How the Gut’s “Second Brain” Influences Mood and Well-Being ~


What’s happening? Am I dying? Dr Aine Turbridy (on Panic attacks and Anxiety) ~

‘Physician heal thyself’ may be impossible task for a Psychiatry profession in crisis ~


Depressing truth about treating depression in the young” Niamh Drohan ~


Council for Evidence Based Psychiatry ~

Psychiatrist / Psychopharmacologist Prof David Healy ~ www.davidhealy.org

Study 329 – where the hell is the outrage? by Dr Malcolm Kendrick (Seroxat) ~


Danish doctor Peter Gøtzsche is co-founder of the respected Cochrane Collaboration.

Interview ~ www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIIQVll7DYY

Dr Michael Corry at 19 mins discusses the lack of training of Psychiatrists in the area of therapy ~ www.theenchantingvalley.ning.com/video/dr-michael-corry

Deaths in the UK connected to SSRI use ~ www.antidepaware.co.uk

ER Doctor Sues Psychiatrist ~ www.opb.org/news/article/er-doctor-sues-psychiatrist/

“Government needs to see mental health as an economic issue” Keith Gaynor ~


Interview with Prof Ivor Browne and a young girl he helped called Ruth O’Doherty ~ www.newstalk.com/podcasts/The_Pat_Kenny_Show/The_Pat_Kenny_Show_Highlights/93403/

Dylan Tighe speaking to Ivor Browne ~ www.mixcloud.com/corkmidsummer/talking-theatre-dylan-tighe-in-conversation-with-prof-ivor-browne-and-chaired-by-dylan-haskins/

Most people labelled as having Depression have suffered grief that hasn’t been resolved

Irish prescriptions for antidepressants, close to 450,000 annually, are “very much a creation of psychiatry” says Professor Ivor Browne. He tells Kate Shanahan there are no instant solutions to problems that reflect a deeper hurt”


Interview by Psychiatrist Dr Peter Breggin with Psychiatrist Dr Joanna Moncrieff ( 8 mins in ) ~

“Dr Terry Lynch is an Irish GP who became a psychotherapist and now devotes himself to helping people through his practice, his books, and his courses for professionals and the public”
https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-vtu9s-6d3323 (19th July 2017)

Dr Terry Lynch’s website ~ http://www.doctorterrylynch.com

‘The Myth of the chemical cure’ Dr Joanna Moncrieff ~


Bob Fiddaman Blog (Mental Health activist) ~

“GROWing towards recovery: a re-enchantment with life – Mike Watts” ~


GROWing towards recovery: a re-enchantment with life – Dr Peter Lehmann ~

Peter Lehmann “Recovery from Psychosis and Depression by Taking Psychiatric Drugs versus Recovery by Coming off Psychiatric Drugs”


Psychiatrist Daniel Carlat – Unhinged: The Trouble with Psychiatry ~


Psychiatrist Colin Ross: www.youtube.com/watch?v=AG1VHpsgUcY

Drug safety website ~


Guide for stopping anti-depressants (under supervision of medical professional)


Coming Off Psychiatric Medication ~ www.comingoff.com (information for Prescribers)

Recording from The International Society for Ethical Psychology & Psychiatry (ISEPP) Conference. A mother (nurse) speaks of how difficult it was for her son to come off Paxil (Seroxat).


History of Irish Psychiatry ~ Behind The Walls by Mary Raftery:

Part 1 ~ www.youtube.com/watch?v=PvxOon7CWZI

Part 2 ~ www.youtube.com/watch?v=LTOWZu0Gubo

Mary Maddock: a survivor of ECT and decades of Psychiatric drugging ~


“Leading Irish Psychologist warns against taking drugs for stress” ~


“Phil Fennell, Professor of Law at Cardiff University, looks at mental health legislation

in Britain and elsewhere, and draws lessons for reform of Ireland’s Mental Health Act 2001.

Phil was speaking at an Amnesty International Ireland conference on mental health law reform

in March 2013″ ~ www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDvah16UtaU

Prof George Szmukler (speaking at same conference) ~
www.youtube.com/watch?v=oq3WA5LnHd4 (sound not great)

Tony Bates, clinical Psychologist “Coming Through Depression” ~


“Dreaming of a life outside Prozac prison” www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/newsreview/features/article1260998.ece

Will Self ~ Psychiatrists: the drug pushers ~


The Rosenhan experiment proved Psychiatry to be a fake Science 40 years ago.
David Rosenhan ~ Being sane in insane places ~

“Psychiatric diagnosis not scientific but subjective” by Ciaran Crummey ~


R D Laing used work of Nash and Game theory to study human relationships (18 & 25 mins)


Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation in patients with recurrent self-harm. Hallahan et al 2007 ~

Dr. Allen Frances on the Risks of DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistics Manual) – The Lens Report ~


Dr Allen Frances (chair of the taskforce that wrote the DSM-IV) writing about DSM-V (2013) ~


TED talk on “Schizophrenia” Connecting to Madness | Jim van Os ~


“Understanding Psychosis and Schizophrenia” (revised version) ~

Bipolar / Manic Depression

Making sense of Manic and Psychotic episodes (Dr Terry Lynch) ~

“It is not known how frequently severe PMS is misdiagnosed as bipolar disease by Psychiatrists but it does occur” http://www.studd.co.uk/bipolar.php

Bipolar InOrder by Tom Wootton et al


Book reviewed by John Grohol

Moving From Bipolar Disorder To Bipolar IN Order www.youtube.com/watch?v=e4mTW-3mpMM

“The Secret Life of a Manic Depressive” presented by Stephen Fry ~


How to Avoid a Manic Episode ~ www.bpso.org/nomania.htm (some information relevant)

‘I was unaware of potential adverse effects to my prescribed antidepressants’ ~


One woman’s account of suffering from psychosis ~


8 Tips to Help Stop Ruminating ~


Depression, Manic Depression and Psychosis seen as Spiritual Openings ~

Sean Blackwell’s work ~ www.youtube.com/user/bipolarorwakingup

Corrina Rachel speaking to Sean Blackwell about Bipolar ~

~ www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLIeS6idzD4

Stephanie Sorrell and Eleanor Stoneham ‘Depression as a Spirutal Journey’ ~

Violence associated with prescribed Psychiatric substances (and withdrawal from same)

Yolande Lucire ~ Adverse reactions to Psychiatric drugs:


Dr. Peter Breggin’s Testimony at Veterans Affairs Committee On

“Antidepressant-Induced Suicide, Violence and Mania: Implications for the Military”:


Suicidality, violence and mania caused by SSRIs: A review and analysis ~


Paxil (Seroxat) Maker Held Liable in Murder / Suicide ~ Donal Schell case ~


“A lecture by Prof David Healy from the Institute of Psychological Medicine and Clinical

Neurosciences at Cardiff University on the over 100 drugs that can cause violence” (2013)


“Prescription Drugs Associated with Reports of Violence Towards Others” ~


Harvard Professor Joseph Glenmullen MD www.drglenmullen.com/

“Forensic testing of blood can now determine if anti- depressants were the cause of violent behaviour, including murder or suicide, new research has found”

Leonie Fennell’s blog ~ https://leoniesblog.com/

Research Suggests that Forensic Psychological Examinations are Unreliable and Biased ~

ECT (Electric Convulsive Therapy)

Barbaric age of electric shock ‘cure’ must vanish by Dr Michael Corry ~


Over many years studies of ECT have shown no long-term benefit, only a temporary relief of

symptoms due to confusion and brain damage” Prof Ivor Browne (June 2008) ~


An informed consent form for Electric shock treatment by Psychiatrist Dr Bob Johnson ~



Quote from Psychiatrist Dr Joanna Moncrieff ~ “The idea that we are doomed by our genetic make-up to develop life-threatening or disabling conditions is surely a profoundly depressing one.

We will likely never be able to fully account for why some people experience extreme mental states, but we know that poverty, unemployment, insecure attachments, familial disruption, low self-esteem, abuse etc. play a role for many. We would be better concentrating on how to eliminate these from our society if we really want to reduce the impact of mental disorder, rather that pouring more money into the bottomless pit of genetic research” ~


“Prior to initiating treatment with an antidepressant, patients with depressive symptoms should be adequately screened to determine if they are at risk for bipolar disorder; such screening should include a detailed psychiatric history, including a family history of suicide, bipolar disorder, and depression” That came from http://www.rxisk.org

Why do people react badly to drugs?

Not all people are born with a full complement of metabolising enzymes, and sometimes the ones they do have are duplicated (genetic polymorphism), leading to compromised, absent, or very rapid metabolism of drugs. In this situation, side effects occur, ranging from mild to life-threatening. Side effects also occur with changes of dose, up or down, or when starting or stopping medication, and sometimes months after stopping. Once they set in, they are difficult to reverse”

http://www.drlucire.com/adverse-drug-reactions.html (Yolande Lucire, Forensic Psychiatrist)

An illness like any other ?

“Time to Change has a mission to educate the public and teach that mental illness is an illness like any other. I believe this is the first point on which the campaign is doing a massive dis-service. The problem is that there is yet to be any conclusive evidence that this is the case. There is no physical, objective test that a psychiatrist can carry out in order to diagnose a mental illness. A mental health diagnoses is a label that is based on a consensus about clusters of experiences rather than laboratory tests. As Thomas Insel, the director of The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) stated, ‘In the rest of medicine, this would be equivalent to creating diagnostic systems based

on the nature of chest pain or the quality of fever.’”

The problem with spreading the myth that emotional distress is a biological illness of the brain is that it discourages the view that we are all unique human beings, reacting to the world around us. Difficult life experiences can mean a person can become extremely distressed. Blaming the brain creates a situation where people’s life stories are not heard, and the need for social justice is ignored”


by Flo Bellamy

Adverse effects of Prescribed Psychotropic substances

Prescribed psychotropic substances can have very damaging effects, especially when used long term.

In 2005, a study funded by Eli Lilly, the maker of Zyprexa / Olanzapine, found that chronic / long term exposure to this major tranquilizer causes shrinkage of the brain, “significant reduction in brain volume that affects both gray and white matter”. I first learned this from honest Psychiatrists Dr Peter Breggin and Dr Joanna Moncrieff. I was put on it at what I now consider too high a dosage (10mg) long term in 2008! I did not have informed consent about this powerful but potentially damaging drug !

The Influence of Chronic Exposure to Antipsychotic Medications on Brain Size before and after Tissue Fixation…” ~ http://www.nature.com/npp/journal/v30/n9/full/1300710a.html

Lilly Settles With 18,000 Over Zyprexa / Olanzapine ~


AstraZeneca Settles Most Seroquel Suits ~

Does long term use of psychiatric drugs cause more harm than good? ~


John Rengen Virapen ~ Pharma whistleblower ~ www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmnOni0xlM4

New study concludes Psychiatric drug treatments haven’t resulted in an improvement

in the long-term outcome of patients with “mood disorders”:


Phenomenal rise in prescribing levels by doctors every year

Drug prescriptions rise in England ~ www.bbc.com/news/health-33427313

“An extra 34.5 million drugs and other prescription items were given out in 2014 compared to

the year before, the latest snapshot for England shows.

The Health and Social Care Information Centre report reveals prescriptions for antidepressant

medications rose by 7.2% from 53.3m to 57.1m” ~ http://www.bbc.com/news/health-33427313

SPECIAL REPORT: The anti-depressant generation ~

Our €40m drug problem ~


Anti-depressants and Pregnancy

* Education ~ Free course by a doctor from Boston ~Antidepressants & Pregnancy ~
The risks and potential harm to normal fetal development ~ http://education.madinamerica.com/p/antidepressants-pregnancy

“This free course is by Adam Urato, MD
Adam Urato is Assistant Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, Massachusetts, and an attending maternal-fetal medicine physician at Tufts Medical Center and MetroWest Medical Center in Framingham, MA. An expert witness in antidepressant litigation, he writes and lectures regularly on antidepressant use during pregnancy”

* Panorama ~ The Truth about Pills and Pregnancy (15 mins in) ~


Note ~
Don’t stop or change prescribed drugs without speaking to your prescriber, due to withdrawal

Resources to help those who Hear Voices

Hearing Voices Network www.hearing-voices.org

Intervoice (International Hearing Voices Projects) ~ www.intervoiceonline.org

TED video by Eleanor Longden (Voice Hearing) ~


Jacqui Dillon (Voice Hearing) ~ www.rte.ie/radio1/doconone/radio-documentary-sounds-mad-hearing-voices-psychology.html

Also check out work of Dutch Psychiatrist Marius Romme


Life After Suicide BBC Documentary 2014 “Documentary. Angela Samata explores why some people take their own lives and how those who love them come to terms with the loss”.

Suicide sanctuary ~

‘Suicide remains a taboo subject, something few people are prepared to talk about’


Denmark ~ “Antidepressant regulations tightened following suicide”:


Antidepressants and suicide: what is the balance of benefit and harm ~

Kerry coroner makes emotional plea over suicides ~


Tranquillisers and methadone send drug-related deaths soaring by 30% ~


Methadone is as dangerous as heroin’. Cork City’s best-known emergency

consultant is not a fan of methadone, the substitution drug used to get addicts off heroin.


Recovery Tool WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan)

WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) ~ Mary Ellen Copeland et al: www.mentalhealthrecovery.com

WRAP App Demo: www.youtube.com/watch?v=0BK_jLMToeM

WRAP Overview: www.youtube.com/watch?v=TnNmGyv1IHo

WRAP Crisis Plan and Working Through Hard Times (including link to pdf) ~

“Fresh take on mental health care” Dr Pat Bracken /
Sylvia Thompson ~

In Africa, I witnessed how people could recover from the most traumatic experiences with a strong sense of community support. To recover from illness, people need to have a sense of hope, purpose and meaning in their lives and ultimately, this comes more from the culture, economy and relationships they have.”


The Efficacy of Play Therapy With Children: A Meta-Analytic Review of Treatment Outcomes


Where is Happy? by Lou Lou Rose is the second book in a new series that addresses the rise in young children’s anxiety and stress in a practical and helpful way. This beautiful children’s meditation book promotes self-esteem and self-confidence in a way children can relate to. Children’s quest to find ‘happy’ brings them closer to home than they could have ever imagined”


Men’s Sheds ~ www.menssheds.ie/

Severe Injury and Death in Psychiatric Industry

“Teen girl in care of HSE to continue anti-psychotic medication despite her mother’s objection “: www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/teen-girl-in-care-of-hse-to-continue-anti-psychotic-medication-despite-her-mother-s-objection-1.1370237

An Irish mother’s fight against forced medication ~


Anna Byrne. The Anti-depressants Seroxat and Sertraline are mentioned in this article ~


The Inquest of Jake McGill Lynch (age 14) ~

Teen who took own life ‘failed by mental health services’ ~
Inquest hears Dan Hogan (17) was ‘traumatised’ by 26 day stay in inpatient unit ~

Maria Bradshaw’s account of her son Toran’s suicide in NZ. Toran was 17 ~

Inquest of Teresa Mullaney from Sligo ~


Antidepressant Use in Children, Adolescents, and Adults ~ FDA black box warning ~