Filed under mental health

Beyond Love

I’ve become a huge fan of Ira Glass’s ‘This American Life’ podcast, especially since it provides a welcome antidote to all the bad news coming out of the states recently. Last week i stumbled upon one of the strangest stories ever, in the episode ‘Grand Gestures’ which challenges so many aspects of what we are … Continue reading

St Thomas’s Old Operating Theatre

St Thomas’s Old Operating Theatre

This is a wonderful, haunting but small museum, a place that should make you fall down and give thanks to whoever you believe in that modern medicine exists. It’s in the attic to provide maximum light for operations. Everything is so small, especially the operating table which I doubt would be long enough for me. … Continue reading

May on Mental Health

May on Mental Health

Our Prime Minister has announced help for sufferers of Mental Health, possibly in response to the revelation that the late MP Jo Cox was seriously concerned about loneliness in her constituency, which is often a factor in this. Bravo Theresa, but no cigar, because the commonest form of mental illness is depression, and a major … Continue reading

Black is More than a Colour

Black is More than a Colour

Many years ago I visited a Steiner Community for people with learning difficulties. Their bedrooms were different colours, and they moved each week, but the yellow room had to be repainted as it was found to cause sleep and behavioural disturbances. We are all affected by colours, and some colours have negative connotations, none more … Continue reading

Georgian Care for Mentally Ill

Before mental health services were established, it is generally assumed that people suffering mental illness were locked away as with Mrs Rochester, or put on display to e mocked at Bedlam. But in small communities, matters could be dealt with on a local level. There was a wider range of employment than today; everyone could … Continue reading

Rituals of War

This is from the brilliant new book Tribe – On Homecoming and Belonging by Sebastian Junger. I have heard a lot of stories about the problems of well meaning westerners going to poor countries to ‘do good’ but this is the most disturbing and damning of their attempts to force western behaviour onto others, and … Continue reading

Music and Insomnia

Last year I posted a blog about the incredible Radio 3 marathon broadcast by Max Richter called Sleep. Here is some of it on his album: In 2014 comedian/writer/musician Matt Berry released Music for Insomniacs, the result in part of his struggle to get enough sleep, investigating if some types of music may help. Now … Continue reading

Depression and Comedy

There has long been an association between depression and comedians, perhaps the most spectacular being Spike Milligan, one fo the UK’s most brilliant, who was for most of his later life unemplopyable due to his unreliability. This is an article by Jessica Barrett in the i newspaper: “I’m paraphrasing but Friends actor Matthew Perry told … Continue reading

Missing his Wife

Here’s a truly bizarre way to grieve for a departed partner. From the Chester Chronicle of May 1775, an extract of a letter from a gent in London to his friend in this city: “Mr Van Butcher, a celebrated dentist, had the misfortune about 5 months ago to lose his wife, form whom he had … Continue reading