In my area it has taken 39 years for the promised new building for mental health sufferers to become a reality!
It's crazy, and the stigma attached to the old building was tremendous. Just the mere mention of the name conjured up all kinds of thoughts in peoples imagination. People think it's the building that scares people but the truth is people are more scared of what happens within! You don't even look at the building when you have to go there as I did.
Here's a poem I wrote about it after visiting:
I didn't see the tall iron gates
standing in front of me.
The building didn't scare me!
I didn't even notice it was there.
I was looking only down!
The thoughts of what lay within,
were more worrying to me.
What were they going to do,
would I ever be allowed out?
My head was in a spin!
What of the rumours I'd heard?
The stigma of the place!
What was I going to face?
Are they going to fry my brain?
The thought of such pain!
"The thoughts that race around my head,
are plain crazy, so I've been told!
My mind's gone off the beaten track,
not on course with the rest of you!
That makes the going tough on me."
I've been put in the nuthouse!
What of those on the outside,
when they hear I'm on the inside?
What will their thoughts be?
"Yeah, I knew that he was crazy man!"
"They will have put him in chains,
bolted to the walls!"
"Locked behind bars within locked rooms!"
"That crazy man won't ever escape!"
"I'll never be of a mind to be put in that place!"
When shown to a room,
what a relief!
I see no chains fixed to the wall,
not even a lock on the door.
Well only one, to keep you out!
Worried now that night-time is here,
everyone heading for their rooms
"lights out, sleep tight!"
Not chained – not even to the bed!
There's nothing to fear in here.
I've been on the inside looking out,
you've all got it wrong!
You listen too much to rumours of old,
you're too afraid to learn the truth.
Things have changed – no men in white coats!
A Moodscope member.