‘Speeches’ Dates, Times and Info Updated

The “Speeches” section of PeteEarley.com has been updated now to include specific addresses (as they are available) as well as links to maps and ticket/registration information. There is also an interactive map that plots all of Pete’s speeches throughout the United States. If you are in charge of an event Pete is speaking at and the information listed is wrong, please contact me at [email protected]. If you are interested in having Pete speak at an event of yours, email [email protected]

Linda’s Story: Part Two

Joan Bishop tried to help her sister, Linda, after she developed a severe mental illness while she was in her 40s. But Linda didn’t want her help. She refused treatment and medication and Joan’s attempt to obtain a guardianship over her sister was rejected by a judge.

After a drunk driving incident, Linda got further into trouble by throwing a cup of urine at a correctional officer while  in jail. She was charged with a felony. Eventually, she was involuntarily committed to the New Hampshire State Hospital, but she refused treatment and would not take medication. After a year, she was released without any follow-up.

Because Linda had refused to sign a HIPPA wavier, Joan had no idea that her sister had been discharged until several months later.

What follows now comes from a journal that Linda began writing four days after her discharge.

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Linda’s Story: Part One

If you had known me as a child, you would not have suspected that I would become an author. I was horrible at spelling and poor at grammar. As a teenager, I wasn’t much of a reader, either. But I always have been fascinated by people and their experiences and some of my favorite memories are of the times when my father, a minister, would take me with him at night to go “call” on members of his church. I don’t think many preachers actually visit people at their homes anymore, but in the 1960s in rural Colorado, they did and I discovered early on that nearly everyone has a story to tell.

Help Us Improve the Blog

My name is Evan and I’m Pete’s son and also one of the main curators of his website. Between my brother and I, we redesigned and have been moderating this new site, including the blog. My Dad and I have been overwhelmed by the immediate success of this blog and it’s all thanks to you – the reader. We have seen the website statistics jump and almost double since the launch of the new PeteEarley.com. A large part of this reason is the blog. And because we have gained so much from you all, we want to provide an opportunity to make it a better experience for you.

I have read a few comments asking or suggesting some certain things to be added to the blog, such as following widgets, etc. I wanted to open the discussion to all the readers of the site.

What do you want to see on this blog that would make the experience better? Don’t focus so much on content, as that is Pete’s decision, not mine, but stuff that would make this blog more accessible. Such as RSS feeds or Twitter linking, etc. What features do other blogs that you read have that we don’t and you want? Also, are there currently problems you have with the way the blog is now? We want to make improvements as suggested by those who are most intimately involved with the blog each day.

Please keep the comments civil and constructive. I will be monitoring them the next couple of days and will take all the suggestions seriously. Thank you for reading and for making this blog a success so far!

Adding Anosognosia to the DSM

As many of you know, I became an advocate for mental health reform because I could not get my son, Mike, help when he first became psychotic. I had rushed him to an emergency room only to be told that he was not sick enough. He was not considered an “imminent danger” either to himself or anyone else even though he was obviously delusional. Forty-eight hours later Mike was arrested after he broke into a house to take a bubble bath.
I was outraged and that experience caused me to begin campaigning for reforms in our current involuntary commitment laws. I think “dangerousness” is a horrible criteria. It is one reason why our jails and prisons are filled with persons whose only real crime is that they have a mental disorder. It stops loved ones from intervening before an ill person gets into trouble and it contributes to persons becoming homeless and dying on our streets.Click to continue…

A Lecture from a Hero of Mine

I was delighted when I opened my email and discovered that Major Sam CochrenMajor Sam Cochran, who often is called the “Father of Crisis Intervention Training,” had sent me a note. Sam is one of my heroes and has probably saved more lives of police officers, persons with mental illness, and their loved ones, than anyone else in our nation in recent times. He is also a modest and decent guy who is dedicated to helping persons such as my son even though he does not have a family member with a mental illness.

I tell Sam’s  story in my book and describe the key role that he played in developing CIT in Memphis, then spreading it across the nation and now internationally. Talk about someone who is making an impact!

The reason Sam was writing was to give me a well-deserved lecture — in his gentle, Southern way.

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