violence and mental illness: how should we talk about it?

earlier this week, our newspapers were full of the tragic story of clare shelswell, the little girl who was killed by her stepfather, peter wilson. on june 29, the vancouver sun devoted half of page 1 and 2 to it. on page 2, there was also an article that contained an interview with an expert… Continue reading violence and mental illness: how should we talk about it?

family life – a fantasy

she opens the door. “laura hapley?” “yes …. ?” “and wally hapley?” “yes. and you are … ?” he is 6’6″, broad shouldered, dressed in thick leather from boots to gloves. “could i speak to mr. hapley, as well, please?” “he is busy right now. what is this about?” she glances towards a door in… Continue reading family life – a fantasy

september 11 – the happiest day of my life

“what was the happiest day of your life?” this question comes up, sometimes. until seven years ago, it was “september 11, 1973.” that was the day my oldest child was born. it was the least pleasant of my three births, what with me an unwed teenage mother in a hopelessly old-fashioned veteran’s hospital in munich,… Continue reading september 11 – the happiest day of my life

bullying stops here!

today is international stand up to bullying day.  students and lots of other people all across canada and the world wear pink to mark the day. last year, two students in nova scotia (canada’s east coast) donned and distributed pink shirts after a classmate fell victim to homophobic bullying for wearing pink to school. this… Continue reading bullying stops here!

mental illness and violence

most people have little reason to fear violence from people with mental illness, even in its most severe forms. historically, in the 1950s, mental illness carried great social stigma, especially linked with fear of unpredictable and violent behaviour. while there is greater public understanding of mental illness nowadays, paradoxically, the perception of people with psychosis… Continue reading mental illness and violence