- Audio Download
- Listening Length: 9 hours and 11 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Random House AudioBooks
- Audible.co.uk Release Date: 5 Jan. 2012
- Language: English
- ASIN: B006UIWXJW
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
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The Locked Ward: Memoirs of a Psychiatric Orderly Audio Download – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
"I hope it will inform people about the nature of serious mental illness and how it is treated. I hope it will correct misconceptions, and show that people with serious mental illness can say or do funny things, sad things or bad things; be brave, resolute, irritating, selfish, generous, kind, cruel or petty just like everybody else. Mainly, though, I want it to celebrate a group of people who are misunderstood, mistrusted or viewed with apprehension - the patients."
I am a pretty devoted reader of anything to do with mental health problems, partially due to my own experiences and partially thanks to my interest in the social sciences generally, so this was a must-read for me. While there are many memoirs out there about the experience of depression, schizophrenia, addiction and any number of other issues, it's unusual to find a memoir by someone caring for those people in a professional sense.Read more ›
I think the book succeeds at all its tasks: it portrays the patients as humans, with their frailties and their strengths; it demystifies psychiatric illness effectively, and educates the reader in the basics of neurosis, psychosis and therapeutic strategies without condescension. And, as any memoir should, it gives great insight into the character of O'Donnell himself, since we see all the events through his particular lens.
If I could change just one thing, it would be to tone down the use of central Scotland vernacular. The book deserves a very wide readership, but non-Scottish readers may be perplexed by occasional unfamiliar expressions. That aside, the book is a triumph. I am really looking forward to his next one.
I quickly found that inside knowledge was not necessary and that it was actually a compassionate but very humorous read about folk; those who care and those who are cared for, some who are mad and some less so. The author provides insightful accounts of patients and their treatments as well as detailing some of their relationships with the nursing staff, making you realise that the kind of care that the author and his colleagues provide is very special indeed.
The book does take you through all the emotions. You do laugh, very hard at places, but you are most definitely not laughing at or conspiring against the patients. You may also shed a tear in sadness or anger, but the author does attempt to explain why the patients are how they are and intersperses the anecdotes with explanations of the different illnesses and psychoses which helps to provide a context to the patients' stories.
At the end of the memoir, I felt the common satisfaction derived from a thoroughly enjoyable read but also, and without trying to make it sound like a textbook, educated. Educated in the sense that it helped me overcome my own ignorance and in some cases prejudices about mental illness.
Although, I am sure this book will be pigeon holed in the health and/or biography sections of bookshops and Amazon, it is much more than that. I am now in agreement with my friend and can safely say this is the best book I've read in years.
I am eagerly anticipating a follow up by Dennis O'Donnell and surely a memoir of his teaching career is the obvious follow up.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Empathetic and down to earth. Very interesting account of work as a nursing assistant in an acute psychiatric setting. Read morePublished 2 days ago by M. Weir
I really wanted to read this. I previously worked in Mental Health and so many memories came flooding back when I read this. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Blackcountryshaz
What a great book loved It gave me insight on how the wards are very interesting I would recommend itPublished 1 month ago by eileen macgregor
Written with humour and compassion, this is a fascinating account of life on a locked ward. Well worth reading. Brilliant!Published 1 month ago by migmos
I closed the book without reading more of his immature prose.
I feel rather sorry that he considers so much of himself.
I found this book fascinating and absorbing, the way Dennis described every detail really helped you get in the room with him and those inside the locked ward. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Lilian W
Excellent.Extremely interesting and honest.It really open the readers' eyes to the work of the psychiatric nurse .Published 5 months ago by Anthony Claricoates