Bewilderment consists of nineteen personal stories of ordinary people whose lives were turned upside down by mental illnesses with rare and dramatic symptoms. They were chosen out of thousands of cases in a thirty year career in psychiatry, for the unusual natures of their symptoms, and the devastating impacts the illness had on their lives. This is high adventure, the patients the characters and the casualties, the clinicians the observers. With mystical, bizarre, outlandish and confusing changes in the reality they perceive, the patients are left terrified, confused and bewildered. We should deeply sympathise with those less fortunate, whose realities would be our nightmares, for it shows us how much we ‘sane’ people rely on the continuance of the stability and undisturbed working of our brains.
The patients discuss their thoughts, beliefs and feelings before, during and after their strange journeys. These are examined in the light of current psychiatric knowledge and opinion.
For those whose interest is piqued, who wish to read further, there is a detailed Glossary and an Index of relevant textbook and professional Journal articles.
James Penhaligon is a retired medical doctor and consultant psychiatrist living in Cornwall. Married, with children & grandchildren, he speaks four languages. He has lived and worked in East and South Africa, the Netherlands, New Zealand and the UK. During ten years in general practice he became intrigued with the workings of some of his patients’ minds, and it led him to specialise in psychiatry in the UK, and spend the next thirty years working in that fascinating field.
He gained experience and knowledge from patients and colleagues, other professionals, textbooks, and j...
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