Tag Archive: Ethics


Proposed Return to Veganism

The more I’ve interacted with Krishna Das’s page and those of his friends, the more I have felt I really should return to veganism.  On my last few shops I have felt really bad about stocking up with meat and fish and thought maybe next time I’ll cut it out and buy vegan.

A couple of days ago I did it!  I submitted an online order then went back to it and cut out all the meat and dairy and replaced them with vegan products.  I had a serious wobble about it when I went to see my mum.  I think I’m a good cook for my own purposes (and actually I’d love to cook for more people, but I AM a bit slow so I don’t think I could make a career out of it) and I was saying how much I would miss everything, named each meat, fish, dairy and honey product with great anguish!  And all the things I won’t be able to eat in restaurants . . . .

The last time I went vegan, about 10 years ago, I was very evangelistic and Pentecostal about it. Everything had to change all at once, very fervent and much resolve.  Took all my meat and whey protein powder to a local homeless project.  This time, however, I’m being much more – organic? – about it, more relaxed and liberal, less intense.  I’ve still got a lot of meat and fish in my freezer so I’m going to eat it.  I’ve got a whole jar of delicious honey, I’m going to eat that, too.  I’ve got dairy cheese (I expect to miss that, especially Stilton) and one egg left, and I will enjoy those, too.  But once they have gone I’m intending not to replace them (I feel I should make a more committed statement than that, but I won’t – what I write here won’t change anything anyway).

When I’ve heard people talking about changing to veganism in the past and doing it gradually, choice by choice, that’s been an approach I have despised as ethically inferior.  I don’t know now, though.  It took me decades before I actually got to grips with making the leap in the first place.  And maybe it is more realistic to think that ethical actions don’t have to be backed up with self-conscious, anxious, instant conversions. No one’s life is 100% ethically pure, anyway.

This post is not a statement or commitment, just an account of my thoughts and recent choices.  I expect a more relaxed approach than before to work better for me this time, it will be easier to maintain and integrate psychologically, I am sure.  I maintained it for about six years last time, it wasn’t a flash in the pan.  So I’ll try this approach and see how it works differently, if it does.  I think it may be like slipping into something more comfortable.

Oh, also, I’ve managed to find some vegan wines, stout and cider at Sainsbury’s online, much cheaper than going to specialists.  Just put the word ‘vegan’ before what you are looking for and the options appear.  The wines I expect to be fine, they are varieties I like, anyway.  The cider and stout is a bit more of an experiment for me.

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Please read this, it is shocking.  Read it literally, and also draw parallels with other situations I have written about, please.  I think the people who make these sorts of decisions are not fit for purpose, and our system is full of them.  Seemingly no idea of ethics, full of cruelty, dishonesty, ignorance, lack of regard for the rights and feelings of others . . . . Heartbreaking.  Shattering.  Degrading and demeaning.  Dehumanising, for both parties.  Come on, please.  Isn’t it time we said enough is enough?  Why are we like this?  Who has done it to us, as a society, in relatively recent times?  Maybe I just don’t know my history.  Maybe THAT is my problem . . . .

Jesus loves me, this I know
For the Bible tells me so
Little ones to Him belong
They are weak, but He is strong

Christianity and Veganism – Either/Or?

Today I went to a Zizzi restaurant in Newark.  All I wanted was a glass of wine but I thought I had better at least buy an Italian bread bucket, as it is a restaurant not a pub.  As a vegan I was not thinking that the fining process for the wine had probably involved the use of animal or fish products.  I wasn’t thinking, all I wanted was a glass of wine after over two weeks not drinking anything.  In the end I had two glasses of wine, sea bream and tiramisu.  Some vegan I am?  Yes, absolutely.  I keep wanting to ‘eat normally’, ie, not vegan, and sometimes I give in to the urge.  The last two or three months I have given in a few times.  Until tonight, over the last two weeks I have been OK and stuck to the straight and narrow path of being a vegan.  It’s been better for my digestion as well.

Today, before this, I was thinking that the reason I am a vegan is that eating non-vegan harms animals, even just using their products, given the farming methods used, and that it brutalises people, especially at the extreme end of those who work in slaughter houses.  I wanted to be a vegan because I wanted to affirm myself as a human being who does not harm or cause suffering to animals and is not in any way involved with it.  There are people who say they would never harm a fly who eat meat and fish and their products regularly.  They are in denial.  Other people are being paid to do the dirty work for them and they buy the sanitised product at the end, and obviously recognise no link between themselves and any harm or suffering caused to an animal.  If they say they would never harm a fly and mean it, their thoughts and feelings lack clarity.

At the moment, though, I could joyfully abandon veganism.  I often crave foods that are not vegan, the vegan equivalents are just a bit harder to get hold of and a bit more expensive, and there have been times when I have eaten seitan when I have wanted to cut into some real flesh.

Christianity and Veganism – either/or?  Apart from two years in my teens I have always considered myself a Christian.  Even during the first years of being hospitalised I sometimes had difficulty seeing myself as Christian, but in those days I considered myself to be in a bad place in my life.  In my teens I embraced a life without God for two years.

The one thing we know about the things Jesus ate, if we believe the Bible, is that he ate fish.  For a few years now I have held to a position in my thinking if not always in my practice, that abstinence from all things animal is morally superior to indulgence.  So I was asking myself earlier today, where does that leave Jesus?  If it is better not to eat flesh or any of its products, where does that put the Saviour of the world, morally?  I get embarrassed when I don’t eat vegan.  I would be embarrassed to give up my vegan position, and have often seen my slips as sin.  If my slips are sin, did Jesus sin in eating fish?  Yet I have seen my veganism as part of my Christianity.  I have thought a great deal of the vegans I have met, robust and beautiful people.  Is it enough to say that Jesus was a man of his time and ate flesh without sinning?  I think vegetarians and vegans existed in those days as well.

I don’t know about veganism, but vegetarianism is an important part of some Eastern religions.  When the apostle Paul wrote to the Romans he recognised that some people did not eat meat and saw them as the weaker brethren with weaker consciences, and said that if his eating meat caused any of them to stumble he would never eat meat again.  There is no reason in the text to believe he did not mean this and it seems possible that he might have become vegetarian himself, because undoubtedly there were people who would have been stumbled by his eating meat.  I’m wondering if I am making too big a thing of this in believing that holding to a position that veganism is morally superior and preferable is incompatible with me calling myself a Christian in the traditional sense.  The kind of Christianity I have believed in says that Jesus was sinless, yet He ate fish, at the very least.

This Morning

So, what happened this morning?  R in the wheelchair told me it was either Sue or Sharon who said she had legs, she should use them.  When she told me that they were both sitting opposite me and she just said the one sitting opposite, so that is as close as I have it for now.  They started whispering together and laughing.  It came up about Sue swearing at me and telling me no one liked me again, and she said I had no proof.  They told me I was boring and my blog, which they say they haven’t read, is boring.  They told me I don’t know how to use my brain and that I am paranoid.  Sue said I was paranoid when I was saying about her swearing etc.

OK, I don’t have proof, but she and I both know, and I know she is lying.  She lies even to say she isn’t lying.  What sort of person says that another has no proof when they are expressing that kind of concern and offense?  I believe I should not need proof.  They have almost absolute power over me and I think that I should not need proof in the same way that a person reporting a past sexual offense against themselves does not need it.  We are that vulnerable.  I hope it turns out that I do not need proof.

They were all shouting at me this morning and laughing at me and letting other people, patients, shout at me.  They kept taking their side and using them to have a go at me.  I tried to talk to the doctor about what was happening and they wanted to hang around outside the door and watch, as if I was dangerous, so I said I would talk to someone else.  Jesus said the same thing – why have you come at me like this?

I couldn’t eat lunch, it was too spicy.

Whatever these people want, I will not work with them.  They are Nazis.  I will not have it said that they are working with me by my consent.  I’m not sure what they think they are trying to achieve, if it is not just trying to disempower and humiliate me.  Helen was there again, Steve who was responsible, so I was told, for the decision to not even help me with my bed.  Steve stayed laughing in the background, the women worked me over.

It started because I was told I needed to be out of my room so they could do a cleaning audit, and I let them bully me out.  I wasn’t dressed, I hadn’t showered.  When I pointed that out Sue gave me an empty stare and said ‘tough’.  I’d had a bad night because a woman on my corridor kept slamming the door again, I think it was Kerry, but I’m not sure.  It also could have been staff.  When I wanted to go back in my room Sue was sitting there and she said ‘she won’t come out again’, then we got into an argument about my right to stay in my room, and the fact that they can’t manhandle us out if we are not a danger to ourselves or anyone else.  As I said last night, they know it is the only place I have and they are taking full advantage of that. They were saying the other patients were all out and I said they didn’t have to be because the law protects us.  They were goading me, with complete disrespect.  They stripped me naked and insisted I stay among them in my distress, with them tossing me around on their horns.  I’ve had the hospital as my only home for nearly 16 months.  It has always been untenable.  I told them I would probably be gone within a month because accommodation and discharge is being talked about, and one of them threw up their hands and said hurray, or something to that effect.  Two of the other patients started on me, one said I should be in prison or in a hostel and that they were going to phone the police.  She got on the phone and asked for Scotland Yard.  I told her I would happily be in a hostel but they wouldn’t let me go.  I’ve got to wait until after 4th September when my Care Co-ordinator gets back from leave, unless I can find out from my advocate that there is a quicker way of doing it.

I had a dream last night that I was looking after Brian May’s house for him while he was away.  I also dreamt about the whole of the original Queen cast, but their hair was up in frizzy bunches on each side of their heads, while they were singing.

Oh, apart from putting me in the wrong all the time they asked me if I wasn’t sick of the sound of my voice.

Of course my constant fear about my blog is that it isn’t making the difference I want it to make, that in spite of all the clicks people don’t read it and they do think it is boring.  All I can say is that I am a real person coping,or trying to, with a terrible situation.  And I think I have something to say which should be taken seriously and should make the difference I keep saying I want it to make for myself and for others.

Update 15.07.2013

Last Friday the decision to restart medication was communicated to me, almost 3 weeks after the SOAD interview.  Myself I think this is appalling and I have never experienced it before, and when I have mentioned it to staff in other areas they have said they found the delay a bit strange.

I am still quite disorientated, attaching too much emotional importance to some relationships, strictly speaking and according to current official guidelines on boundaries.  Now I’ve said that I am questioning it, but certainly I don’t think much about the future, occasionally my anger erupts, a lot of the time a lot is being fudged for me.  I feel as if I am being tamed the same way as an animal might be tamed, with punishments and rewards.  Not having much privacy, if any, for writing my blog I’m not doing a very adequate job.  I’m sitting in a Wetherspoons pub at the moment.  Not many people in this section.  I came to download something from the internet.  I’ve just remembered I did make quite a few notes last week which I intended to be for a blog entry.  I haven’t got round to using them yet and I don’t want to use them at the moment.

I spoke to my psychologist this morning.  He was talking about boundaries to protect vulnerable patients.  I know technically he is right.  I just saw something else on WordPress about game approaches to mental health.  I’m not sure if this fits here.  I feel upset and disorientated in this pub.  Jim, my key nurse, is on night shift tonight.

I have been trying to deal with a personal offense between myself and a member of staff.  I have been trying to approach it as a personal thing, not a professional thing,, but so many other people are somehow involved without me having given it to them I feel disorientated and confused.  I am desperate, I want to scream, and I feel as if it is my fault, that I am failing.  And the truth is I am, but also i am getting confused with all the people either inputting or piggybacking or sometimes, I feel, blocking, and I keep finding fault with myself and knowing, when I am alone, that I’m not handling it right.  I’m not feeling great in here, I’m not seeing things straight.  It matters to me, but I feel as if I am trying too hard to do something and that can’t be right or good.  Underneath I am raging because I feel as if I have been manipulated and bullied into this position.  I’m really upset, really tired, quite afraid, and I’m not sure what is happening.  I’ve been suppressing laughter for quite a while out of respect and sensitivity to this situation.  What I am afraid of in this instance is that we are not going to get satisfactory closure.   I’ve seen this person cry.  I’ve seen a few people cry.  Staff.  It seems to matter to me so much I am worried about why.  But in my mind I am contradicting myself even as I am typing.  There is a lot of psychological violence I am experiencing from some staff.  This is not a personal relationship, so how can I handle this powder keg?  We both seem to be trying.  I have thought this person’s tears were about this issue between us but I have realised I might be wrong, and my greatest fear is that if I raise this I might not get any answers.  That matters to me.

I have been trying, sometimes, to respect the office, in general, if I can cope with the person filling it.  But I have realised that, a lot of the time if not all the time, I believe it is the office itself which is evil.  I have been taught to respect the office when dealing with authority and officials.  I have had disturbed sleep for the past three nights.  I am much more distraught than I am showing.  I feel as if I am at home or in church, not a place I hate and despise.  There is so much laughter underneath, and tears.  My sense of humour keeps having a go at me, but often I am afraid to show it, or ashamed.  That will do for now.

PS on the practical side, as well as the delayed SOAD decision and broken sleep caused by noise on the ward, mainly, I think, staff talking and even shouting last night, and slamming doors, on Friday and Saturday morning we had no water on the ward.  I managed to brush my teeth Friday morning but there wasn’t even enough for that on Saturday.  I mentioned it when my psychologist asked me what I do for self-care and he asked if we had been given any warning and i said not that I had been aware.  Also in the shower we get four one minute jets of water for everything we want to do, and they are not awfully powerful.  If I want to wash my hair I have to load my sponge up from the basin and basically give myself a wash down and use the shower for my hair.  Even then I still find I need to put my head under the basin tap two or three times even if I use the shower only to wash my hair.  I think this is a contributory factor to my low mood.  I think a shower should be a pleasurable experience, but at the very least it should be sufficient for everything you need to do in it.  It feels like very basic survival.  I’m in a hotel restaurant now, just had a coke.  I feel like a very miserable and repressed wet blanket.  My mood here has been better in the past.  My psychologist said I seemed vulnerable this morning.  I can’t remember if he said emotionally vulnerable or what.  This morning I was not totally unhappy to be feeling vulnerable.

Going back to the relationships issue, I am getting very confused.  I have started thinking about the role of community in handling what I had wanted to deal with myself.  I’m getting confused because I feel as if the level of expectation of me from myself and others is inconsistent with the fact that I have a diagnosis of schizophrenia and am not expected to be fully functioning anyway.  Something happened last night – I said something, i can’t remember what or who to, then I made a joke of it saying I was speaking to an hallucination, and didn’t the person know I had hallucinations.  I don’t, it was a joke of sorts, but I became afraid it might be taken seriously as consistent with my diagnosis and documented.  What seems strange though was that the shift manager laughed when I said it (oh yes he did).  That seems to me to have been inappropriate.

I feel I have done violence to myself this week by requiring of myself, maybe feeling it was required of me as well, that I stay quite serious.  On Friday I became very upset after an encounter straight after I had been injected with a test dose of the drug they want to use (I have been given no information about it).  I remained upset for hours and no one came to help me until the end of that time, and I found her approach intimidating.  I thought that to leave me in that state, especially at that time, was mental cruelty.  They always have left me.

Stage 2 Medication

Where I am we have stages in medication.  I have just been put onto stage 2, which means I have been given a strip of four bubble wraps, one for each medication time, and my medication is in the bubbles appropriate to me.  I take it away with me at the beginning of the day and I take it, or not, on my own terms.

This is the perfect opportunity for me to not take my psychiatric medication.  I thought about not taking it and took it anyway.  The other stuff I have is anti-inflammatory for pain and stiffness in my upper arms, anti acid to counteract the effects of that, and multivitamins and minerals and omega 3-6-9 oils (vegan, bang the drum and be clear.  Made by a company called Vertese and available at Holland and Barrett).

Essential Links – New Page

Today I have posted a new page, “Essential Links”, which I will update occasionally if not regularly. It consists mainly of sites which I consider to be essential reading.  It was private for a while and had the first two links already, but the ones I have posted today are antipsychiatry links.  Please visit these sites and read the material thoughtfully, and please check this page often.  I find some of the articles I have read invaluable and in line with my own thinking and experience.

I saw on a site not listed, recently, a photograph of a woman in a wheelchair as a result of tardive dyskinesia, a condition sometimes caused by psychiatric drugs.

Oh – and Happy New Year!

So Anyway, last Wednesday . . .

My advocate and I went into the review meeting with Dr Jaffur and Alison, the ward manager.  When we came out we both agreed that the two staff had not been open to changing their intentions with regard to forced medication.  My advocate suggested that I could be moved to another ward and Alison said she I didn’t have a good relationship with any of the staff and that she thought I would always feel harassed.  I suppose the facts and what I think about that don’t matter.  Their position as stated was that they just wanted me better, and that if the medication was not taken orally they would inject.  When I asked when the medication was going to start, after the review meeting, Alison said in a really confrontational way ‘it starts right now’.  I found it so confrontational that I asked her if she was trying to get me into a state where several people could hold me down and inject me.

So I have capitulated and am taking the medication orally, in spite of the fact that my previous reasons for not wanting to take it remain.  Being forced to take medication against your wishes is bullying, which the trust says it does not tolerate.

Last week the possibility of forced injection was being held over me as a threat (threat is the right word).  I asked the nurse last night what would happen if I were to refuse medication now, if I would be injected, and he said no, an injection was no longer there as an option.  But if I refuse again now I am afraid (fear is something else the trust literature says the trust does not tolerate) that they would go straight to injection and keep it that way, and withdraw the oral option.

In the meantime, I am exhausted, worrying about relationships on the ward, as if they are the most important thing in my life; worrying about my financial situation, especially with regard to my belongings in storage and the fact that my benefits are due to go down now I have been so long in hospital.  Occasionally I recall that what I reported around my home has not yet received any signs of being taken seriously and would therefore be likely to recur in any future tenancies.

Alison says she sees no sign of any harassment.  Maybe that is because she isn’t out of her office and among us when that is happening.  Or maybe it is deliberate blind eyes and deaf ears.  I have told them everything and there is nothing else to tell.  If anyone is being disingenuous in this, it is not me.  I have noticed that several of the staff use false personalities.  Knowing that makes me not even want to try to relate to them.  Also, if it is true that I don’t have a good relationship with any of the staff, as Alison said, it might be possible that that is because I see them as upholding and enabling a totalitarian and abusive mental health system.  They know my beliefs about this, so it shouldn’t be put down to a failing in methat I don’t have a good relationship with any of the staff, if that is true.  Also, some of them are there just for the money and don’t want to work.  They are happy if we are not visible because we feel so threatened and disrespected by them.  They just mess around until it is time for them to go home.

I’ve just finished the 1st chapter of ‘The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner.  In places I have found it hilarious and I anticipate a good read.  The protagonist is from Nottingham, in a Borstal, at this point.  I don’t know anything about the book or where he ends up in his thinking.  He talked (he is the narrative voice) about having seen the knife held by those in authority over him when they put him in a Borstal.  Being of a basically law-abiding temperament I want him to have changed his thinking and position about a lot of things he is sure about, including his belief that the authorities are his enemies and always will be, by the end of the book.  In the meantime, I am loving it.

My laptop needs mending.  Hard drive disk inaccessible.  Have just submitted a form.  I’m typing in the library.

Jessica Blake (with apologies and sympathy)

Looks a bit like me and a bit like one of the ward nurses, Jessica. I have recently downloaded some William Blake, who I spent a lot of time on when I was studying for my English BA.  The same time PC Blakelock was killed in the Tottenham riots in the 80s after the death of a Mrs Jarrett, which was the name of another lecturer on that course.  I expressed my concerns in an email last year, or via the website, to the police.  That is not the first time my concerns have gone unanswered.  AOL today is the first time I have seen Jessica’s picture, I don’t watch tv in the tv room as a rule, it is too difficult and disruptive/competitive.  I also realised for the first time the other day that one of the Moors murders victims was called Keith Bennett, almost the same as my father’s name which I had told the assessment doctor the day before his mother died.

My psychiatrists, who have done some brutal and inadequate assessments on me over the last 2 weeks since I tried to discharge myself as was my right and they put me back on a section 3, are determined to forcibly medicate me.  They are tapping into the animal desperation in me and I believe there is potential for their actions to do more psychological harm than chemical good.  They are also disregarding the decision of my former trust that I was obviously not going to change my mind so they were no longer going to force the issue.  I had a conversation with one of my key nurses today who said they were seeing t as a fresh situation.  But I am the same person and should be respected for myself and the professional decision of those who have dealt with me before respected.  I have had such rudeness from some of them that I believe this is largely revenge for my blogging.  In spite of the fact I asked for help twice in my situation after I got into it with temporary housing, and didn’t get it, regardless of the fact Iwrote 8 pages saying why we would need help before I was even given the accommodation, on which they eventually changed the locks while I was in hospital without telling anyone, and that none of the decisions they have made have been communicated to me in writing – in spite of what my nurse said are the irregularities of the situation, these unreasonable people want to start again a battle which I have already won, after not knowing the serious and untrue accusations being made against me,with another trust.  My tribunal was successful.

I just walked in to a hotel reception where 4 men were standing, one of them saying ‘have you got any pussy organised’.  These people are animals of the lowest order.  I feel sick and frightened here, this place is evil and alien.  This is a Hilton hotel, but it is just like the worst pub people dressed up.  A few plush seats around, and men giving unwanted attention to an 11 month homeless woman who has no privacy at the moment to use the internet or anything else.

There are abusive relationships on the ward.  I think some of the staff have been willing to turn a blind eye to some of the harassment I’ve had from some patients because they know I am deliberately not naming patients.  Last weekend when I was re-sectioned I stayed in my room and didn’t eat, and they were not too worried about it.  Twice this week I have said that I did not want to go to the dining ro to be served by Errol because of his abusiveness towards me, and twice, including today, I was made to miss a meal because they would not support my attempt to protect myself.  As far as they are concerned, if there is a problem, it is me.  My nurse said that if they had done as I had asked and got my lunch for me it would have been seen as collaborating with me.  I am there involuntarily and under threat of forced medication and not being able to afford to get my food elsewhere, but also not being willing to subject myself to such a negative experience, or fudge and compromise and basically what is brainwashing if I am expected to go through that, and they are paid people employed by the trust.  If I allow myself to be subjected to harassment or assault, knowing that that is what it is, how does that show good mental health?  They said they would be collaborating with me if they enabled me to get some lunch, and they would not let me leave when I had a right without re-sectioning me (which interestingly was on Julian Assange day)and I have been saying repeatedly that my storage costs are nearly £100 per month and I need to stop the payments and have a home.  On the day they would not let me leave, police helicopters flew over the hospital.  That has happened before.  Big Brother re-enacted the Julian Assange situation in the embassy, with Julian Cleary and the woman off East Enders that I have been told looks like me.  I haven’t seen it, but I heard about it on the radio, and several staff came in exuding warmth and stuff at me.  I was angry that night.  I said the helicopters were about me, that it had happened when I first got there.  I shouted ‘God bless Julian Assange’.  For the first time I saw the footage where he shook hands with someone I had spoken to at London Occupy.  I’ve written about him elsewhere on this blog.  I told the staff that they were my captors, not my friends, and that I was terrified of them.

I feel betrayed by everyone who has ever put out anything which seemed positive towards me.  I feel as if they want me with my head psychologically kicked in.  I can’t go through this, and they can’t let me, without damage to my ability to relate to them.

My solicitor got in touch with the advocacy service for representation for me at last Friday’s review meeting.  On Wednesday the advocate phoned to say she couldn’t make it.  A message was left which was not relayed to me.  I didn’t know until Friday morning that no one was available.  On Friday afternoon Dr Fahy’s SHO told me that the next review would be next Friday and that from then I would be medicated, forcibly if necessary.  Today my nurse told me that the review and the medication has been written up for Wednesday, although she said Friday and that is what I have been preparing myself for.

I have submitted a complaint to the address given on the trust website, 3 times now over the last week or 2.  It says you should receive a response within 3 days.  I have received nothing.

I think these people are unscrupulous and will hurt me with compulsory medication if they can, whatever is going through in terms of asking my closest relative to apply for discharge for me (which need not be granted) at the time.  They have said it is not that they consider me a danger to myself or anyone else, but that they believe I have an illness that would benefit from medication, and are worried about what would happen if the same home situation occurred again, as if I had not asked for help and been failed by the authorities.  I said it wouldn’t occur again unless I was failed by the authorities when I asked for help again.  And as for a sickness that might be helped by medication – there are many medical professionals who do not take psychiatry seriously.  But a lay person in their power does not and they go to dehumanise them and denude them anyway.  I have lost most of my life to them, including the last of my reproductive years.  I have no partner and no children and now will not be able to have children.  This is a major trauma and grief for me which will never pass, and they want to add more abuse to it.  This is more like an irrational form of veterinary practice than medicine which should be practiced on a human being In the deep grief of childlessness and knowing that a lot of the blame lies at the doors of the authorities, including the NHS.  Do no harm, is that part of the oath?

This Moment IS

The staff on the ward have found my blog, without me giving them the address but saying angrily a few times that I was going to blog.  The ward manager collared me twice, once quite softly and the second time in a way which made me feel they wanted to take my computer and my leave away.  The second time she approached me with 2 other female staff members and in public.  She said she wanted to talk about my use of my computer on the ward.  I said it was music and that I have no internet connection on the ward.  She asked me quite crossly where I wrote my blog and how I wrote it and I pointed out that I have 5 1/2 hours total off the ward and I go where I can get a connection and that I have the same freedoms as everyone else in that time.  They said they did not like having their names associated with certain things.  I said that I have things associated with my name which I don’t like also, and that they were free to write or comment.  It was probably in that context that she said that it was a matter of confidentiality, but I took it to mean that she was saying I was breaking a duty of confidentiality which I was quick to point out that I do not have but that they do.  They talked about seeking advice.  I said OK.  I hope if and when they do the outcome will make a big difference in society and for people who are held against their wishes and with other forms of abuse, harassment and bullying thrown in.

This is good.

They saw me coming towards the office/ward exit this afternoon and it seemed to me they deliberately closed the office door and I stood outside knocking with them ignoring me.  This happens often.  The staff last night were calling people rude.  I’m not sure who they meant.  At the time it seemed it was obvious they meant me.

2 nights ago a woman had 2 separate instances of being forcibly medicated.  Hefty men called and involved, on an all-female ward.  If anyone knows how that is appropriate I would appreciate the feedback through comments.  She said they had hurt her hand and it was all swollen and red.  I know I have been there, in London.  It took 6 months for my hand to stop hurting, and the man doing it at the time, when I said he was hurting me, said ‘well, you will learn your lesson, then, won’t you?’  I was never contemptuous of my own life until I felt betrayed by the church and came under the psychiatric services.

We appear to have a large degree of revolt and anarchy on the ward at the moment.  Everyone is angry and the staff are, to my mind, often unprofessional.  Everyone knows what is happening but the staff say nothing, and I think most of us patients know they know more than they are allowing us to be party to and that, if we were allowed to be party to the staff’s knowledge of what everyone knows, a lot of things might be called into question.  Just a thought.

This blog is exactly what it says in the title, that and nothing else – the thoughts and observations of a certified nut.  Why would anyone want to seek advice over that?

Did I say that I had had a bad week as a vegan last week?  I was tempted again earlier this week but I talked myself through it.  I went through the ‘so I’ll feel guilty’ bit and realised afresh that it is about the suffering or death or utilisation of an animal in a way which is not ideal.  I decided we are different from most of the animal world in that we have a conscience and can think, philosophise and moralise about our behaviour.  I had tears in my eyes as I thought it through.  I was happy about that.  It is about the animal and about me, living according to my light.

Jesus is wonderful and I love Him.  He ate fish.  I’m not sure how to harmonise that.  It is said that the prophets were vegetarian and that the Essenes were also.  And I believe it is right not to use animals.  So I can’t deal with the Jesus and fish thing – not at all, in that context.  I think I was taught at Bible College that John the Baptist was an Essene.  So while they might have said ‘but Jesus ate fish so it isn’t wrong’, why would John the Baptist have lived by a higher morality?  We were told that when it says JTB ate locusts, it actually means the locust bean, and not the insect.

Not meaning to be self-righteous here, because obviously I am not perfect, but as a victim of constant neighbour violence and harassment, including at illegal times, over the last six months, by a household that mixes it all up with ‘dobre’ and ‘hallelujah’, I have tried to confront them and appeal to their consciences in words about what they are doing and the right way to deal with their problems (go to the police), and it has made little difference, if any.  The same house producing consistent violence and harassment is also producing consistent hallelujahs and dobres and recently men in tears, and I am a single foreign woman.   I’m not sure I understand this.  It is like one Bulgarian says that there is no mafia control, and another says most business in Bulgaria is controlled by, if not owned by, the mafia, and I encounter all kinds of stuff, as a stranger everywhere I go, which says people know me and where I am from, and sometimes I feel so much love and shame and guilt I think the mafia might be a good thing, not a bad thing, and the violence (and mentally I even put THAT in inverted commas now) really is a legitimate form of discipline and correction that a community imposes on people who are out of step, without resorting to a police service in which people whose job, which they are paid for and from which they can be sacked, one hopes (but check this out for the official policy to police accountability in Bulgaria in 2009), gives them authority they sometimes, if not often, use for abuse and contempt.  I feel the love and sincerity is among the normal, powerless people, including the people above my apartment who target my ears with violence when I’m using the toilet or shower or in bed or any time they seem to feel the need, and who say hallelujah and dobre and cry, as I cry myself.

I have to leave this weekend.  My landlord, who has known all about this for ages because I have told him in detail, has decided to throw me out without ever having sought legal support for me, knowing that my own attempts have failed.

There is no such thing as public opinion, because the public is made up of many people who hold many different opinions, and who are confused about th eir opinions and change them often, or are paralysed into inactivity or other manifestations of distress.

So I’m wondering how this became an accepted and acceptable concept in the first place?  It is a handy concept to impose, for some people and organisations.  Is it about making money and controlling people, or what?  I can’t think of anything else at the moment.

If you can invoke the concept of public opinion, you can use it not only to say ‘this is good and this is bad’, but also ‘this person is good, and this person is bad’.  In some societies the ‘good’ people can kill the ‘bad’ people for lesser crimes than murder.  That is not to say that killing people for murder is good (though for them it might be preferable to a lifetime of interment). 

I was going to say why should we be punitive by making the punishment last a lifetime, but then I thought about the possibility of change and rehabilitation which wouldn’t be available to them, or us, if we killed them.  Maybe, if we want to be really kind, we should give people an option of the death sentence or a lifetime’s imprisonment or stuck on a psychiatric ward on drugs.  If we are going to argue for voluntary euthanasia and the right to assisted suicide I can’t see why not.  And it might sort out the prison space problem and problems in the economy too, because we wouldn’t be having to pay for them.

You could argue that a life in prison or on psychiatric drugs is not the kinder option, if the person would prefer to get the whole thing out of the way immediately and just die.  Why should we want to deprive a criminal of that option, unless we ourselves are sadistically and viciously punitive?  But then there are others who are sadistically and viciously punitive in the other direction who would say, ‘and a good thing too, taking our space and costing us money’, but they might have a harder time maintaining that if the option of the death penalty was seen as a kindness rather than the ultimate punishment.

Why don’t I check things properly?  Julian Assange is a computer hacker.  Hacking computers is a crime, and should be whoever does it.  Even the state.  It’s reduced us to the level of wrestling in mud.  FGS.

It’s complicated for me.  The writing of this post is a little distracted by the fact that I have a Napster automix playing, but I don’t want to turn it off.

I’ve been asking the people I have been looking to for support to contact me properly and legally for ages.  They don’t.  I don’t know how many of them are involved in computer hacking themselves.  I don’t know how much ‘support’ I have mistakenly believed I am receiving from the fruits of said hacking.

We need to get back to principle. Argument from principle, not pinning people to the wall with the results of our hacking (which I don’t do, and wouldn’t if I could).

Especially while we have forums like this for open communication.  If we argue from principle, and we do it openly, people will be forced to take notice.  Anything else is deeply abusive and irresponsible, even and especially from government agencies.

I think if we argue from principle things are going to come out anyway.  It is urgent and imperative that we do so, keep at it and do not give up.  If these buggers don’t listen, there is something wrong with them.  And that is something they need to hear and that we need to understand and be confident in asserting.

I still identify a lot with Julian Assange.  He looks as emotionally vulnerable as me.  what is happening on a spiritual level is weird.  Every time I get a hold on a new thought and want to run with it, one of my neighbours says something loudly.  I don’t think it is just in my head.  I think it must happen to other people as well.

For me, I know and feel I am in deep trouble, within myself, if not in any other way.  It is these phenomena which are keeping me so emotionally raw.  Just when you think you have your own head space, someone invades it.  Their right to speak is not the issue.  The repeated timing of it is, it is freaky and debilitating.

I think they are doing to Julian Assange what they are doing to me.  I hope he isn’t aware of me as some people are, and deliberately reflecting me back at myself, as some people do.  That WOULD be stupid, if I have fallen for that.  If he is in as much emotional trouble as he seems to be, I feel for him.

Some really cute songs in this mix.  Specifically generated for Christmas.  I get obsessed and deprive myself of music, and that is bad for me.  It makes me feel at odds with everybody and that I can’t do what I am being asked to do. Listening to this is making me wish I had done what people have been asking me to do and then I might have had a decent Christmas.

I want to go home.  To London.  I’m frightened and embarrassed.  I feel that leaving was dishonorable.  Please note, I said I feel. The fact that I am verbalising a feeling does not mean that I am saying it is right and appropriate.  In a climate like this, you feel to the point of believing you know, that all kinds of things are right or wrong.  ‘Knowing’ beyond a doubt that the guilt you feel is entrirely right and appropriate is no indication that it is right at all.  But it is indistinguishable from the real thing.  Even legality can’t be the measure of what is appropriate or not, when people bend and construct the law to suit themselves.

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