Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Psychiatric Survivor's?

I’ve been researching recovery and I keep hearing the phrase Psychiatric Survivor. What I have gathered from the research is that when you have mental distress, most people come through better than before they had mental distress. It brought the question to my mind: Can anybody go through mental distress and become better than before? I remembered a book I read about a man that was in a concentration camp and the techniques he used to survive. His name is Viktor E. FrankL and his book is called Man’s Search for Meaning, An Introduction to Logotherapy. He became a psychiatrist and I am going to use this quote from his book “After all, ‘saying yes to life in spite of everything,’ to use the phrase in which the title of a German book of mine is couched, presupposes that life is potentially meaningful under any condition, even those which are most miserable. And this in turn presupposes the human capacity to creatively turn life’s negative aspects into something positive or constructive. In other words, what matters most is to make the best of any given situation.” He made it through, so we come back to the question can anybody do it? To me, mental distress is hell and a place I never want to go back to. As I wrote in previous blogs, I have become better before my life was hopeless in and out of jail. Now I’m working and building a better life for me, and hopefully to show my grandchildren the right road to go down. Is mental distress worse than a concentration camp? Does it make you give up on life or fight to become a better person?

1 comment:

  1. I was introduced to Viktor Frankls book "Mans Search for Meaning" by my friend, mentor, teacher, spiritual brother the late Dr. Robin "Doc" Herman. Doc used Vicktor Frankl's work as a methaphor for our clients and students in his book, "The Psychology of Incarceration." Viktor Frankl's book sparked, my own quest for meaning and purpose. I now tag my life as "Khadijah's Search for Meaning"
    Thank you Doc for complimenting my life with the knowledge you left me to use as tool when making any life decision.

    Khadijah Ali