Public Speaking

Speaking

I offer formal and informal talks and presentations geared for children and adolescents, college students, families, communities, and organizations on a variety of topics, including:

— Sharing the story of my fourteen-year relationship to the mental health system and how I left it behind
— Adolescence and “mental health”, and the impact that psychiatric labels and psychotropic drugs have on young people
— Making meaning of suicide, and how I’ve transformed my relationship to the urge to die
— Coming off psychiatric drugs
— Leaving behind a “mentally ill” identity and reclaiming one’s agency, voice and identity

If you are an educator looking to bring a critical, personal perspective on conventional mental health care to your graduate students or institution, I regularly speak with students pursuing degrees in “mental health”-related fields, sharing my story and reflections on my experiences as a mental patient, and participating in Q&As and dialogue.  I do this via Skype or in person.

For a list of some of my upcoming and previous speaking engagements, click here.

Public Education, Workshops, and Community Support
I facilitate community dialogues and run workshops on alternatives to the mental health system, including in the following areas:

— How to create grassroots structures and supports outside of the mental health system, particularly around psychiatric drug withdrawal
— Critical education and consciousness-raising about alternatives to psychiatric labels, psychotropic drugs, and the mental health system
—How to start free mutual aid support groups for coming off psychiatric drugs

Rates and Availability

Please contact me at LDelano@recoveringfrompsychiatry.com.

Sample Talks

November 2015, Anchorage, Alaska
Recovering Myself: A talk about journeying through the mental health system and coming back to oneself

The word “recovery” is heard a lot these days in the mental health system, but what does it really mean? Is it that a person “recovers from” a condition of some kind? Is it about finding “mental health recovery”? Or, could it perhaps be about “recovering” something that was actually lost, or even taken? In this talk, Laura Delano explored what “recovery” has meant for her on her journey through the mental health system. She reflected on what it was like to be diagnosed “bipolar” and seek help from the mental health system over the fourteen years to follow, and share what would become her most important discovery along the way: that she needed to come off medications and leave her psychiatric diagnosis behind if she stood a chance at recovering what it was she was really looking for: herself.

November 2014, Los Angeles, CA
Reclaiming Humanity: Building a Post-Psychiatry, Post-“Mental Health” World