‘Madness as a dangerous gift’ or my mental health crisis as an opportunity for change and growth…?

‘There are people at START, the arts and mental health project I attended in Manchester for 2 years, who are brilliant in terms of their talents, but on the other hand, and that’s including myself, although I don’t think I’m brilliant artistically, but because of the mental health stuff they’re compromised in so many areas of their lives…they can’t work, they rely on heavy medication, they can’t travel on public transport, they’re restricted because of their mental health problems…I suppose I feel some bitterness around that because I feel  it’s so unfair…and I think I feel that about myself  as well…how much I’ve had to struggle to regain my confidence…I’m in the process of doing that, I haven’t ‘done’ it as such…it’s just twice as hard if you’ve had that load of the mental health thing…I feel privileged that I’ve met these people but there’s a part of me that just feels bitter about the mental health thing…for me and for them I think…when I see how much people are compromised by it, whereas they’ve got amazing potential and talents…I don’t know, I’m not entirely sure about it …whether having had a mental health crisis has offered an opportunity for change and growth for me…’  (Reflexive notes from a therapy session, June 2011)


Mosaics piece, START in Manchester, 2010