The Skeleton Cupboard: The making of a clinical psychologist

The Skeleton Cupboard

The making of a clinical psychologist

Tanya Byron

Tanya Byron shares powerful stories inspired by her years of training as a clinical psychologist

The Skeleton Cupboard is Professor Tanya Byron's account of her years of training as a clinical psychologist, when trainees find themselves in the toughest placements of their careers. Through the eyes of her naive and inexperienced younger self, Tanya shares remarkable stories inspired by the people she had the privilege to treat. Gripping, poignant and full of daring black humour, this book reveals the frightening and challenging induction faced by all mental health staff and highlights their incredible commitment to their patients.

Powerfully moving and beautifully written, The Skeleton Cupboard shares the tales of ordinary people with an amazing resilience to the challenges of life.

£18.99
Loading Added To Basket
Added to your basket
Buy

Book Details

Macmillan
ISBN: 9781447261667
Publication date: 22.05.2014
Number of pages: 320
Dimensions: 234mm x 153mm

In stock
Other sellers Other sellers
Amazon
Blackwells
Foyles
Play.com
Sainsbury’s
Tesco
The Book Depository
The Hive
Waterstones
WHSmith
£18.98
Loading Added To Basket
Added to your basket

Book Details

Macmillan
ISBN: 9781447261674
Publication date: 22.05.2014

Available
Other sellers Other sellers
Amazon Kindle
Blackwells
Foyles
Google ebookstore
iBookstore
Kobo
Tesco
The Book Depository
The Hive
Waterstones
WHSmith
£14.99
Loading Added To Basket
Added to your basket
Buy

Book Details

Macmillan
ISBN: 9781447262077
Publication date: 22.05.2014
Number of pages: 256
Dimensions: 234mm x 153mm

In stock
Other sellers Other sellers
Amazon
Blackwells
Foyles
Play.com
Sainsbury’s
Tesco
The Book Depository
The Hive
Waterstones
WHSmith
£19.99
Loading Added To Basket
Added to your basket

Book Details

Macmillan Digital Audio
ISBN: 9781447263883
Publication date: 22.05.2014
Running time: 600 Minutes

Available
Other sellers Other sellers
Audible
iBookstore

Imogen Church reads from The Skeleton Cupboard by Tanya Byron

Tanya Byron on the journey from chaos to clarity

The author of The Skeleton Cupboard talks about how she came to write the book and explains that 'there's no clear line between sanity and insanity; there's a spectrum and we all go up and down'.

Exclusive video

Log in or register to watch this exclusive video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgcDsbArbe0

At the Bottom of the Deep Blue Sea: a passage from The Skeleton Cupboard

When a child is hanging by the neck, grabbing their legs to hold them up isn’t easy. They wriggle and they kick. Imogen struggled in silence. Then she kneed me in the face, hard, and I tasted blood. The stillness of the room belied the horribleness of the task.

‘Hold her up, up, up!’

Grunts of effort in unison as the little girl’s legs were hoisted higher to relieve the pressure on her neck. The dressing-gown cord was looped over a slim copper pipe in the ceiling. Victorian plumbing was not designed with the health and safety of suicidal children in mind.

I couldn’t believe how heavy a small-framed anorexic child feels when you have to support her as a dead weight.

‘C’mon, guys – push up and hold . . . and hold . . .’

A snap of steel through fabric, followed by a bizarre pause in motion – everything still for a beat before the child dropped into our arms. My frustration melted into relief. I just wanted to hold this little vulnerable person and rock her gently, make her feel safe. Imogen, though, was having none of it. She lashed out, biting, kicking and snarling.

‘Imogen, be still – let’s work together here. Ow!’

Negotiations over, she was quickly flipped onto her stomach, arms held behind her back. Lying prostrate over bucking legs, I had a sudden urge to bite back, to sink my teeth into this angry, ungrateful kid and shock her into submission.

And then it was finished. Child sedated, taken off to the ‘chill-down’ room – chic and bijou, nicely padded, sparsely furnished – while staff dispersed to other duties. Voices in the corridor: ‘What did the librarian say to the kid who wanted to borrow a book on suicide? Fuck off – you won’t bring it back.’

Third week into placement number two and already I wanted to give up and go home.

Keep reading...