Hi chaps, here is some writing, elsewhere!
There are 2 things I’ve recently written floating about. The first is an article for One in Four on working post-mental-illness. (Which made it into the Guardian’s society daily, hooray!)
After four years of treatment, three years on benefits and two interviews, I finally found myself one job.
I thought I’d never have a job again. My employment history is fractured at best. In attempting to work when I was ill, I made that situation and my health worse. Claiming benefits took a long time, but when I was finally successful, it gave me the space I desperately needed to get well. It gave me time, above all else. Time to sort out my housing, time to attend appointments, time to process what was happening to me and learn to live with it.
After three years receiving benefits, I realised I was no longer ill enough to justify claiming them. At the same time, I lost my entitlement to the support that came along with benefits and therefore lost all help toward getting a job. For the first time in four years, I was absolutely on my own. At that point, though, I felt that was where I was ready to be. Well, sometimes. At other times I almost crumbled with the fear that I wasn’t ready for work, that I wasn’t prepared for life without stabilisers.
used to be a very prolific blogger on the subject of bipolar disorder. That was, until I was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. Bipolar disorder, through the visibility of sufferers such as Stephen Fry, could be construed as one of the more acceptable mental health conditions to have. It is associated with great creativity. Borderline personality disorder, however, is a less acceptable condition to have, if anybody knows what it is at all. It is portrayed in the media via the prisms of films like Fatal Attraction, with the terminally attached Glenn Close cutting her wrists as she waits for the disinterested Michael Douglas to call. Within mental health services, its image fares little better. In this study, 84% of mental health professionals said that people with borderline personality disorder were the hardest client group to deal with.
I hope you like them. And hooray for feeling able to write again! It’s been months!
Filed under: Bipolar Disorder