A multi-layered approach to working with traumatic childhood abuse and its interconnectedness with the complexities of the psychiatric system and psychiatric treatment. Journeying together over an intense 12 month period of flashbacks, memories and intense physical symptoms, ‘Liz’ and I have worked “live”, on the phone, and through e-mail and writing. Supported by the client’s GP we have worked with intense bi-polar symptoms, looking at their purpose and meaning. Working in the space between hyper-vigilance and disassociation, mania and depression, insomnia and night terrors, using a flexible channel of communication has slowly allowed the distance between past and present to grow, and supported a connection to the ‘essential self’, leading to the longest period without acute psychiatric hospital admission for 10 years.
‘Liz’ lives on the Scottish Borders and works in art and arts management. She has worked sporadically with Clare on a number of issues for many years.