By Daniel MacklerHealing Homes, a feature-length documentary film directed by Daniel Mackler, chronicles the work of the Family Care Foundation in Gothenburg, Sweden -- a program which, in this era of multi-drug cocktails and psychiatric diagnoses-for-life, helps people recover from psychosis without medication. The organization, backed by over twenty years of experience, places people who have been failed by traditional psychiatry in host families -- predominately farm families in the Swedish countryside -- as a start for a whole new life journey. Host families are chosen not for any psychiatric expertise, rather, for their compassion, stability, and desire to give back. People live with these families for upwards of a year or two and become an integral part of a functioning family system. Staff members offer clients intensive psychotherapy and provide host families with intensive supervision. The Family Care Foundation eschews the use of diagnosis, works within a framework of striving to help people come safely off psychiatric medication, and provides their services, which operate within the context of Swedish socialized medicine, for free. Healing Homes weaves together interviews with clients, farm families, and staff members to create both a powerful vision of medication-free recovery and an eye-opening critique of the medical model of psychiatry.
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Director/Producer PJ Moynihan Producer Oryx Cohen Executive Producer Gayle R. Berg, PhD
Note: The Hearing Voices Curriculum is now available as a virtual training. For some suggestions on how to conduct this training virtually, click here.
Learn more about the Updated Hearing Voices Curriculum in the video below.
Originally created by Patricia Deegan, PhD with updates by Dr. Dan Fisher and Oryx Cohen
WHAT IS IT?Hearing Voices That Are Distressing is a complete training/curriculum package in which participants use headphones for listening to a specially designed recording. During this simulated experience of hearing voices, participants undertake a series of tasks including social interaction in the community, a psychiatric interview, cognitive testing, and an activities group in a mock day treatment program. The simulation experience is followed by a debriefing and discussion period. The curriculum includes an updated DVD and updated discussion questions that focus on what we can do to support people who hear voices."...The first graduate students who experienced 'Hearing Voices' said it changed their lives. We now require it for all our graduate students in sites across the country." ~ Paul J. Carling, Ph.D. Executive Director The Center for Community Change, Trinity College, Vermont "...The voices simulation gave me a good overview of what people who do hear voices go through on a day to day basis." "...Incredible experience which gave a great insight. " "...Every Officer should have this experience so they can understand what people who hear voices are going through." ~ Law Enforcement Officers from Utah CIT Academies
WHO BENEFITS FROM THIS TRAINING?This curriculum has been developed and piloted for a wide range of mental health professionals including: Inpatient/outpatient psychiatric nurses, psychiatrists, social workers; psychologists; direct care workers in residential, day treatment and psychosocial rehabilitation programs; mental health administrators, policy makers; and police officers, academic faculty and students."...I recently participated in the 'Hearing Voices' training. I must confess, I was disturbed by the sudden realization that I have been treating schizophrenia for four years, yet I have never known what it really was. I may have had the knowledge, but not the wisdom or true empathy -Â until now." ~ Jim Willow, M.D. Psychiatric Resident, PsycHealth Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba
WHO CREATED IT?Patricia E. Deegan, Ph.D., holds a doctorate in clinical psychology and developed this curriculum as part of her work with the National Empowerment Center. She also publishes and lectures internationally on the topics of recovery and empowerment. Pat is a person with a psychiatric disability, who also has experience hearing voices that are distressing.
By Claire Bien Paperback 272 pages
By Daniel Fisher, MD, PhDI hope for a day when: Every person who experiences extreme emotional states is engaged in respectful, hopeful, humanistic, and empowering relationships that enable them to heal and recover full, meaningful lives in the community. Instead of being seen as threats to society, we will be seen as a source of wisdom that we have obtained through our recovery. Practices like Open Dialogue will eliminate the long-term iatrogenic effects of a prophesy of doom and lifelong illness. Suffering will be seen as an understandable human response to trauma rather than a chemical imbalance or a defective fear circuit. Voluntary, community-based, recovery-oriented, culturally attuned, traumainformed services and housing will replace psychiatric hospitals. The mental health system will be run by persons with lived experience of recovery from extreme emotional states. Everyone will learn how to assist each other through extreme emotional states by learning communication skills such as Emotional CPR.
By Hanne Arts Paperback 218 pages
By Lauren Spiro
A Daughter's Journey From Grief and Madness to Forgiveness and PeaceThis courageously personal memoir describes Lauren Spiroâ€™s journey from unbearable emotional pain following her fatherâ€™s murder, down into psychosis, through the depths of our dysfunctional mental health system, and finally to a place of transcendent healing and peace where she knows that we are all connected much more deeply than we understand. This book has been a way of sharing meaning found in madness and honoring the vision of a sixteen year old that has lead to her lifeâ€™s work. The Dialogues of Discovery book tour is a testament to the power of dialogue to transform consciousness and an invitation to explore topics touched on in the book, such as; How do you redefine who you are? How do you fill the emptiness in your soul? How do you come to know who you were born to be? How do you find liberation for yourself and others? How do you access and trust your own innate wisdom? Ms Spiro is passionate about developing our capacity for compassion, appreciating the vast intelligence and creativity of the human mind, and co-creating pathways so everyone may come home.
Book ReviewsLauren Spiroâ€™s magical book conjures creativity from tragedy, visions from madness, and leadership from despair. I was especially inspired by her courage to challenge racism in the context of a terrible crime. This heartfelt account of Laurenâ€™s life will inspire everyone to reach higher. ~ Will Hall, host of Madness Radio and author of The Harm Reduction Guide to Coming off Psychiatric Drugs
In this moving, beautifully written memoir, Lauren Spiro tells of unfathomable loss, the madness of a psychiatric system that would diagnose her with â€œchronic schizophreniaâ€ at age 16, and her ultimate recovery from both of those childhood traumas. In her poetry and prose, we see too that wordsâ€”the language that can bring us understanding and compassionâ€”can have a healing power of their own. ~ Robert Whitaker, award-winning author, Anatomy of an Epidemic
In vivid prose and poetry, Lauren Spiro has painted for us a picture of her spiritual journey, a journey that took her from unbearable emotional pain, down into psychosis, through the depths of our dysfunctional mental health system, and finally to a place of transcendent healing and peace. This is a story of hope and love, the story of how a daughter, so devastated by her fatherâ€™s senseless murder, was rescued by his cherished spirit awakening in her adult life. The message is clear: healing of the mind and heart is always possible, love needs to be the guiding star in recovery, and we are all connected, much more deeply than we understand.â€ ~ Dr. Mark Foster, Family Physician
A beautiful story of liberation and growth, Living for Two eloquently expresses the path to forgiveness and offers the reader tools and inspiration to get there. Interspersed with dream-like color paintings and poetry, Laurenâ€™s story blends her personal life history with accounts of the larger movement for mental health liberation. A revealing story that will help other survivors of loss and trauma find hope and possibilities. ~ Cassandra Nudel, Editor, Firewalkers: Madness, Beauty & Mystery
Laurenâ€™s story embodies the strength and resiliency of persons who have experienced trauma. With refreshing insight she graciously shares her journey and the tools and resources that have been the wind beneath her wings. ~ Nikki Migas, MPA, Managing Director, CARF International
Lauren takes us on a journey where culture and cosmology enter different doors of the same house. Living for Two is a love story that celebrates the fragility of humankind and the resiliency of one very brave and wise little girl. ~ Cardum S. Harmon, author, Mandala Project: Transfiguration of Ordinary Souls
Lauren Spiroâ€™s Living for Two provides a compelling account of the struggle to map the unfathomable territories that lie at extremes of human experience. Her recovery and transformation after senseless violence, profound loss, spiritual emergency and extreme mental states exemplify hope, resilience and post-traumatic growth. People in recovery, psychology and social work students, helping professionals, children of violence, and others will find this small volume worthwhile. ~ Priscilla Ridgeway, PhD, co-author, Pathways to Recovery
Lauren invites the reader to accompany her through experiences of devastating personal loss and abuse, and being further harmed by the mental health system. Laurenâ€™s creativity, reflected in her prose, poetry, and painting, evoke insight and empathy in the reader. Living for Two takes its place in the literature of personal challenge and recovery, and the ensuing social activism they engender. ~ Jonathan Finkelstein, PhD Associate Dean, University of Maryland, Baltimore County
A powerful story of a young womanâ€™s experiences with trauma and her courage to reclaim a path of recovery and healing. This memoir should be read by all who work in the mental health field. ~ Kevin Ann Huckshorn PhD, RN, State Director, Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services, Delaware
Laurenâ€™s story is as courageous as it is tender in her exploration of how our deepest losses shape the soul, how fear and misunderstanding can too easily silence it, and how love can give our souls voice again, no matter how long they have been silent. Laurenâ€™s memoir invites us to consider whether there is any wound love cannot heal. A question we must answer with our own lives and hearts. ~ Jennifer Maurer, Managing Director, Mother Bear: Families for Mental Health
Powerfully written, this personal journey from loss and sadness to reclamation and healing is soul-redemptive and emotionally stirring. Thank you Lauren for being real, vulnerable, and sharing your story which will ultimately empower others to share theirs. ~ Amikaeyla, Singer / Songwriter / Executive Director, ICAHSI, The International Cultural Arts & Healing Sciences Institute
By Judi ChamberlinOn Our Own is Judi's story as a patient in both public and private hospitals. The story explores her experiences while being a patient as well as the lessons she learned while using services controlled by the patients themselves. It makes a compelling case for patient controlled services; a real alternative to the institutions that destroy the confident independence of so many. This is a work of great hope and optimism. On Our Own is now translated in to Korean, thanks to Ji-Eun Lee. To download the Korean version, please click here.
By Daniel MacklerIn the far north of Finland, a stone's throw from the Arctic Circle, a group of innovative family therapists converted the area's traditional mental health system, which once boasted some of Europe's poorest outcomes for schizophrenia, into one that now gets the best statistical results in the world for first-break psychosis. They call their approach Open Dialogue. Their principles, though radical in this day and age of multi-drug cocktails and involuntary hospitalizations, are surprisingly simple. They meet clients in crisis immediately and often daily until the crises are resolved. They avoid hospitalization and its consequential stigma, preferring to meet in the homes of those seeking their services. And, perhaps most controversially, they avoid the use of anti-psychotic medication wherever possible. They also work in groups, because they view psychosis as a problem involving relationships. They include in the treatment process the families and social networks of those seeking their help, and their clinicians work in teams, not as isolated, sole practitioners. Additionally, their whole approach values of the voice of everyone in the process, most especially the person directly in crisis. And finally, they provide their services, which operate within the context of Finnish socialized medicine, for free. Open Dialogue weaves together interviews with psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, and journalists to create both a powerful vision of medication-free recovery and a hard-hitting critique of traditional psychiatry.
By Will Hall Paperback 402 pages
Research studies, articles and book excerpts on recovery. All compiled into one publication!This publication dispels the myth that people labeled with mental illness need to lead lives of endless desperation and broken dreams. Inspire a new generation of consumers, caregivers, administrators, and families!
By Laurie Ahern, Daniel Fisher, MD PhD
People can and do recover from severe emotional distress known as "mental illness".This curriculum has been developed by Laurie Ahern and Dan Fisher MD, Ph.D. It includes a 34-page guide and a 90-minute video lecture on the PACE (Personal Assistance in Community Existence) curriculum, featuring information on the empowerment model of recovery, PACE/Recovery principles, and recovery research. This information is useful for administrators, consumers, families, advocates, and providers who want to transform their system to one based on a recovery culture.