This week we revisit a conversation from 2011 with Elyn Saks, a law professor and MacArthur fellow who lives with schizophrenia. We discuss how she came to the difficult understanding that she had the illness and needed treatment, and how she was able to achieve personal and professional success, contrary to our popular notions of life with psychosis.
We begin a new season of the show with some of the best episodes from the early days of Safe Space Radio. We’ll be updating them with new commentary, bonus segments and occasional follow-up conversations. Today we revisit my 2010 interview with psychiatrist Aaron Lazare about the impact of shame and humiliation, and how to repair the damage they cause. Then, a new conversation with a current medical student about how shame can complicate the relationship between doctors and patients, and what can be done to reduce it.
This week’s show is the second half of my conversation with Navy veteran Meosha Thomas. We talk about the injuries she suffered in Iraq when her convoy hit an IED, and about how she lost and regained her desire to live in the long recovery period that followed. We also talk more about the concept of moral injury, and how she wrestles with guilt over the choices she had to make as a soldier, and for surviving when others did not.
Over the next two weeks we will conclude our series on PTSD among women veterans by talking with Navy veteran Meosha Thomas. This week, Meosha talks about the trauma of a helicopter crash that killed a close friend, and the PTSD symptoms that followed after she returned home. She also describes the impossible choices you must make when you are both a mother and a soldier.
This week I speak with LaRhonda Harris of the Maine Department of Veterans’ Affairs. She talks about changes that have been made in the last decade so that women feel safer and more comfortable coming to the VA for health care. She also talks about leading a book group for women veterans, and how sharing stories of the experience of being female in a male-oriented institution allows for connections across generations.