Who Cares?


SKU e-book Category

100 in stock


By Jean Taylor


ISBN: 978-1-904697-63-3
Published: 2005
Pages: 172
Key Themes: abuse, depression, mental health services, autobiographical account, social criticism


‘Who Cares?’ is the autobiography of a strong and determined lady who was abused by her husband whilst also caring for her manic depressive and senile mother. Jean is no stranger to depression herself and has on several occasions been overcome by the demons. She uses this book to denounce the British mental health system using her own mal-treatment as evidence of the poor quality care afforded the mentally ill and physically disabled in the UK. This book exposes the absence of a fully dutiful mental health commission and protective statute and the lack of proper community care. A stark and poignant memoir that is essential reading for all mental health professionals.

About the Author

Jean Taylor was born in March of 1930 in Burnley and lives now in nearby Blackpool. Her life began with a traumatic birth and a poverty stricken childhood. Her first taste of depression came when she was just eleven years old. After many troubles in her life and after suffering abuse and breakdown, she decided to write her own story. Now, Jean is active in the UK survivor movement, and has been featured on national television several times for her writing and campaigning.

Book Extract

Apart from taking medication I don’t remember much. Apart from Pat coming to visit I had no visitors. At what stage of time in there, I remember looking out of the window I saw some building work going on at the back all I could see at the front was grass and in my mind’s eye I was away from any contact with the outside world, this must have upset me and one day when I felt a little better and able to use the phone phoned my sister and told her my daughter had had me put away in this horrible place miles away from anything.

The days, weeks and months must have just passed on and one day they said I could go and sit on a bench outside, whilst I was there two people came out of the door and said hello. When I didn’t reply they said you don’t recognise us, do you? I said no then they said we are the people who brought you in. I couldn’t say I was pleased to see them, I believe inside of me was a mixture of hurt and anger but of course these were bottled up inside of me.

I was discharged after about eight months and one day I met a lady I knew called Mona and I asked her to go with me to visit the ward where I had been kept. I was still of the opinion that it resembled a prison and I needed someone to see it, we didn’t stay long the staff weren’t very encouraging and when we came out I felt physically sick, Mona asked me to meet her the next day but when the day came I had to decline not feeling too well.

At some stage someone decided I needed meals on wheels which, was delivered. But I got a phobia on opening them that someone had poisoned it and used to throw them in the dustbin. I used to walk round the streets and had no idea what I was doing. One day I threw a pen away outside I believe I had brought it from the hospital, then when I got home I worried insistently that they were coming to the hospital it was so very little that I never noticed and I had started laying on my bed again quite a lot.

It was coming up to Christmas time and Pat came for me to take me to town, we did some shopping and she brought me two dresses in Marks and Spencers on her account, she said I could choose which to wear when I went to her house for Christmas dinner. When she dropped me off at home, told me to ring a taxi and book it the day before Christmas for Christmas day. I managed to do that, on Christmas Eve the lady who lived directly opposite me at the back of the house saw me on the back door step and invited me to go round for a sandwich and tea about seven o’clock, I went but was very depressed. Her son about twelve was in and I felt very self conscious and didn’t really know what to say, she had some amplifiers on the wall and I told her gas was coming out of them, I had had the same problem in my house, and in her opinion I wasn’t well again and should be back in hospital.


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