Living Life with Schizophrenia

November 28, 2017 / Emily Hicks  / 
winning, schizophrenia

“It’s been a long road and I have struggled in the past with work and living arrangements, but now I live independently, drive myself to work and manage all my own affairs” states Fred Botruff, a 53-year-old man living with schizophrenia. Fred provides hope to many who are struggling with finding recovery. “Recovery is possible, just don’t give up” shares Fred. I met Fred two months ago when I began my internship at Genesis House in Fowlerville, Michigan. Genesis House is a clubhouse for adults who suffer from mental illness. The clubhouse model (Clubhouse International) provides psychosocial rehabilitation and offers a work-ordered day for members who are striving for independence. Clubhouses provide social support as well as employment assistance to members who are interested and feel ready. Clubhouses are a stepping stone for adults who are building and rebuilding their lives after a diagnosis of mental illness.

I had the opportunity to interview Fred and learned more than I could ever imagine.

Emily Hicks: How would you describe yourself?

Fred Botruff: I am reserved and shy. But I am getting better. I am much better than I used to be.

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Stained? Mental Health Services, Spaces and Shame

June 6, 2017 / Lavender L.  / 
spill, stain

Dear Outpatient Clinic,

I won’t be coming to my next appointment; please transfer my medical records to the address below. Judith Lewis Herman, who first characterized complex PTSD, calls it a “shame disorder” [1]. The inability to act when the self is at stake causes a person to doubt, even to loathe, herself. Trauma is shame; complex trauma is shame that lasts long enough that there is very little ‘self’ left by the end. Trauma is one type of loss of self. Depression, anxiety, and many others – often in tandem – also chip away at the self-worth of your clients.

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