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Psychiatric Disorder and Society

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Clients’ stories are not heard in psychiatry. This is unfortunate, as clients’ stories could teach us a lot. They would tell us about their lives, troubles, and their recovery, about what helped and about the battles they engaged in (Van Weeghel, 1995). Clients’ stories are about how they survive, and how they pick up the pieces. What do they do to promote recovery from their mental problems and their consequences How do clients survive, recover and resume their lives after being labelled mentally ill
RECOVERY
How should we go about understanding recovery This is a difficult question to answer. Recovery is hard to describe in just a few words. The dictionary defines ‘recovery’ as ‘cure’ but most strongly disagree. ‘Cure’ sounds too passive, as if it’s something a physician brings about, or you take pills for. No-one can do your recovering for you, and there are no medicines which will do it for you.
Recovery is something you have to do on your own. And it is a continuous process: it is not an end in itself, nor is there an absolute finishing point. Recovery is an attitude, a way in which you look at life and what happens to you (Deegan, 1993).
RECUPERATION
An ever-present factor in recovery during the first few years after a survivor has left an institution is the need to regain their strength. On being discharged from the institution, they may not feel strong enough to build on themselves. It takes time to regain strength once they have experienced how unlivable life can be beyond certain borders. Once they know these borders, little can ever be taken for granted again.
They are confronted with an overpowering vulnerability which must be surmounted. They have to…
As the report discusses on entering the psychiatric institution people are reduced to car­riers of a mental illness, or they are even seen as the illness itself. In order to classify the disorder, their behaviour as well as their stories are analysed for symptoms. Only what is signifi­cant to the diagnostic examination is seen and heard. Clients are examined but not really seen. they are listened to but not heard. Psychiatry does not regard its clients as serious dis­cussion partners: after all, with a disorder you cannot speak.

This paper stresses that an ever‑present factor in recovery during the first few years after a survivor has left an institution is the need to regain their strength. On being discharged from the institution, they may not feel strong enough to build on themselves. It takes time to regain strength once they have experienced how unlivable life can be beyond certain borders. Once they know these borders, little can ever be taken for granted again. They are confronted with an overpo­wering vulnerability which must be surmounted. They have to test themselves again. The world and all it contains must be rediscovered. Yet they have been drained of self‑confidence, which makes it a hazardous journey. A right balance must now be found between when to act and when to leave well enough alone, between protecting themselves from the dynamics of life and participating in life.