Dopamine Clouds Over Knighton Park


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175 in stock


By Phillip Hill

ISBN: 978-1-84991-074-3
Published: 2010
Pages: 23
Key Themes: mental health, students, autobiography



Somehow Aiden’s world doesn’t make sense any more. His neighbour keeps playing Duran Duran so he can’t think. Fellow students comment on his frenzied dancing style at the Mega disco and he wonders whether all his life he has been too serious. Worst of all he can’t stop thinking a petite freckled brunette called Janice.

Perhap’s if he could make it with her then, then… everything would be solved.

Take the white knuckle ride of Aiden through the highs and lows of student life at Lanchester University through the frustration and devastation of mental illness, through therapy into a whole new unexpected world. This semi –autobiographical account of student life and its aftermath will challenge you about what is and what is not possible.

Believe the unbelievable.

About the Author

Philip Hill was born in Birmingham in 1965 to a mother called Iris who had been in the mental health system for quite a while when she gave birth to him and his twin brother. Under the children’s legislation of the time she was seen as an unfit mother because she was diagnosed schizophrenia and not only was she separated from all her four children, she was discouraged from any contact with them. Iris’s sister had a half sister Doris whose daughter Jessica and her husband Albert took him and his twin brother into care.

Before being taken into Jessica’s and Albert’s care Philip and his brother languished in a children’s home during which they were neglected. By the time they had reached five they were behind in most of the psychological and emotional developmental milestones. Philip went to a special school till the age of nine and could not read properly till 10 years of age.

Despite the early disadvantage Philip developed to a high academic level and went on to study at Leicester University where he was to experience the first of his two nervous breakdowns.

Philip was determined to give back to the mental health system that had supported him and worked as a support worker for Rethink for eleven years as a care officer, Senior Care officer and part time support worker.

Going back into higher education in 1996, Philip attained a taught masters degree, a research masters degree (MPhil) and a Postgraduate Diploma/DipSW in Social Work. He currently works as a professional social worker with adults with learning disabilities in the west midlands and has written an autobiography entitled ‘Living Out of the Book’ (2008) also published by Chipmunka publishing.

Book Extract

A tall, six foot skinny underweight man with thick overgrown hair was tossing and turning in his sleep. The sheets had not been washed for months and a stale odour pervaded his small cramped room. He had a sickly white complexion which had allowed his stubble to become overgrown as well as his nails. This man was Aiden, or Ade to his friends, and he had reached a crisis in his life.

Aiden was an Economic History student at Lanchester University and his room was part of the Elm Tree Road student’s accommodation complex. He had always been seen by some of his fellow students as a bit of a ‘loner’ and a ‘misfit’. He had previously worn a battered parker raincoat on campus with flares and a knitted pullover until one student dared to call him ‘reindeer man.’ He had been perceived by some students as behaving rather oddly and had an eccentric, overly energetic dance style at the weekly student ‘Mega Disco.’ He had also been known for a bombastic taste in music and had inflicted various dramatic classical music pieces on his fellow students from his tape player in his room.

Students at Pollage hall had felt he had been pursuing a small attractive student called Janice over the previous twelve months and seemed incorrigible and undaunted by repeated rejections.

Over the month of June 1987 his behaviour had become more and more bizarre. He had stormed down to Pollage hall where he felt Janice lived and delivered an angry letter at her refusal not only to engage with him but to engage in public displays of affection with her blonde rugby boyfriend Dean.

However on the 30th of June things got out of control.

As he began to think about the symptoms of sleeplessness he had experienced, Aiden started to get psychotic thoughts.

He had been trying to lie down and sleep but he kept getting up all the time. He was fixated with Janice and what she might be saying to him.

For the previous 18 months he had been trying to imagine how Janice would respond to his change of image. His new clothes and haircut had failed so far to initiate a response from her. He had tried so hard to imagine what she was thinking over such a long time that in a frenzied anxious state he finally managed to get inside her head.

Rather than second guessing what was drifting about in Janice’s mind, he finally felt he knew. But it was not just Janice.


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