Veronica Burton's first experience of depression came as a teenager. Following a ten year remission, during which she gained her general nursing qualification and completed her Special and Intensive Nursing of the Newborn course, work-related events precipitated a depressive relapse that has lasted to the present day. Since her retirement on medical grounds, she has campaigned against prejudice by nurses toward other nurses - including mental health nurses - who need psychological support of any kind. This book recounts the author's experiences of major depression, hospital admissions and treatments including medication, ECT and 'talking treatments'. It discusses the care given by medical and nursing staff and social and medical prejudices against those with psychiatric illnesses from a medical practitioner's perspective. Like stumbling on a secret room in a familiar building. In illuminating these previously inaccessible corners of her illness experience, she forces me to challenge my own taken-for-granted version of her history. Familiar territory seen from another perspective suddenly seems perturbing. As psychiatrists, too often we are drawn into seeing people through a lens of illness, as if this was their only identity.A" Veronica Burton's Psychiatrist Nick Rose in his Postscript
Chapter 1: Childhood. Chapter 2: Meningitis. Chapter 3: University. Chapter 4: Staff nurse on SCBU. Chapter 5: Psychiatric out-patient appointment. Chapter 6: First night on. Chapter 7: Interview with registrar. Chapter 8: Nurses try to persuade me to have ECT. Chapter 9: Off close observations. Chapter 10: Community meetings. Chapter 11: Discharge. Chapter 12: Australia - Fears before going. Chapter 13: Lithium levels raised. Chapter 14: Visits from family. Chapter 15: My sister. Chapter 16: Moira’s criticism. Chapter 17: Start at Great Ormond Street. Chapter 18: Moved from ward. Chapter 19: Breakup. Chapter 20: Stigma of mental. Chapter 21: Allitt case. Chapter 22: My present situation.