We've Been Too Patient: Voices from Radical Mental Health--Stories and Research Challenging the Biomedical Model

We've Been Too Patient: Voices from Radical Mental Health--Stories and Research Challenging the Biomedical Model


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25 unflinching stories and essays from the front lines of the radical mental health movement
Overmedication, police brutality, electroconvulsive therapy, involuntary hospitalization, traumas that lead to intense altered states and suicidal thoughts: these are the struggles of those labeled “mentally ill.” While much has been written about the systemic problems of our mental-health care system, this book gives voice to those with personal experience of psychiatric miscare often excluded from the discussion, like people of color and LGBTQ+ communities. It is dedicated to finding working alternatives to the “Mental Health Industrial Complex” and shifting the conversation from mental illness to mental health.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781623173616
Publisher: North Atlantic Books
Publication date: 07/09/2019
Pages: 264
Sales rank: 372,564
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

L. D. GREEN is a queer writer, performer, educator, and mental health advocate whose work has been published in The Body is Not an Apology webzine, Sinister Wisdom, Foglifter, sPARKLE + bLINK, and truth-out.org. She is a poetry slam champion and has performed at the National Queer Arts Festival and the San Francisco Fringe Festival. A graduate of Vassar College, she earned her MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College and is a Lambda Literary Fellow in Fiction. She participated in the Tin House Writers Workshop and was a Catwalk Artist in Residence.  She was involved in the Bay Area chapter of The Icarus Project (a support network and education project by and for people who experience the world in ways that are often diagnosed as mental illness) from 2009-2011 and has given presentations for Youth in Mind at the California Mental Health Advocates for Children and Youth. As an assistant professor of English at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg, California, she teaches composition, creative writing, and literature. She writes and enjoys poetry, creative non-fiction, and speculative fiction.


KELECHI UBOZOH is a Nigerian-American writer, mental health advocate, and public speaker. She was the first undergraduate ever published in the New York Times. Ubozoh was featured in the SAMSHA Voice Award-Winning documentary The S Word, which follows the lives of suicide attempt survivors in an effort to end the stigma and silence around suicide. Her story is featured in the January 2019 edition of O, The Oprah Magazine and on the Good Morning America website. Ubozoh has appeared on The Mental Illness Happy Hour podcast hosted by comedian Paul Gilmartin, presented at Cornell University, and been featured on CBS This Morning with Gayle King. A popular presenter and keynote speaker, Ubozoh has supervised mental health stigma discrimination reduction programs and led communication operations at a mental health nonprofit organization, PEERS. Her poetry was recently published in an anthology of San Francisco Bay Area writers of color, Endangered Species, Enduring Values. She currently works as a peer and community engagement manager at CalMHSA.

Table of Contents

Foreword Robert Whitaker ix

Acknowledgments xvii

Editors' Introduction Kelechi Ubozoh L. D. Green 1

Part 1 Narrative as a Radical Healing Strategy: Personal Stories of Lived Experience with Mental Health

Dear DR Leah Harris 11

To Call Myself Beloved Leah Harris 15

Can't We Just Pray it Away? Faith Communities and Their Role in Mental Health Support Jeneé Darden 23

Untitled Chris Anastasia 29

Unfrozen Lyndsey Ellis 35

How to Tame a Flying Dragon Anita Roman 39

How My Friends Showed Up: Mutual Aid Kelechi Ubozoh 49

We've Been Too Patient: How Mutual Aid Can Improve Therapy and Transform Society L. D. Green 51

Who Do You Think You Are? Shizue Seigel 61

ECT: Day One Alice Mignon 73

For Psychiatric Survivors, Friends Make the Best Medicine Imogen Prism 77

From Burning Man To Bellevue: A Hero's Journey Jeffrey Goines 87

Infiltrating the Mental Health Industrial Complex: On Being a Mental Health Patient-Professional Elisa Magon 97

On Becoming a Politicized Healer Jacks McNamara 115

Apples and Oranges L. D. Green 121

Where Icarus Flew Ken Paul Rosenthal 125

Occupational Therapy Casey Gardner 129

She Wasn't Crazy Kelechi Ubozoh 135

Part 2 Radical Interventions: Challenging the Biomedical Model and Stigma with the Recovery Model

What is Radical Mental Health? 139

The Mindful Occupation Collective

What's There to be Proud Of? Patrick Corrigan 147

Treating Trauma Through The Imagination: Therapeutic Effects of Simulation and Mimetic Induction Alisha Ali Stephan Wolfert 163

Underground Transmissions and Centering The Marginalized: Collaborative Strategies for Re-Visioning the Public Mental Health System Sascha Altman DuBrul 171

Dangerous Gifts: A New Wave of Mad Resistance Jonah Bossewitch 189

The Intersection of Mental Health, Communities of Color, and suicide Kelechi Ubozoh 219

Afterword: Mental Health in the Age of Perpetual Crisis L. D. Green 229

Afterword: Do Your Part Kelechi Ubozoh 235

Epilogue: The Power of Narrative Therapy in the Recovery Model Jessie Roth 237

Glossary 241

About The Editors 243

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