Author Archives: annecwoodlen

About annecwoodlen

I am a tenth generation American, descended from a family that has been working a farm that was deeded to us by William Penn. The country has changed around us but we have held true. I stand in my grandmother’s kitchen, look down the valley to her brother’s farm and see my great-great-great-great-great-grandmother Hannah standing on the porch. She is holding the baby, surrounded by four other children, and saying goodbye to her husband and oldest son who are going off to fight in the Revolutionary War. The war is twenty miles away and her husband will die fighting. We are not the Daughters of the American Revolution; we were its mothers. My father, Milton C. Woodlen, got his doctorate from Temple University in the 1940’s when—in his words—“a doctorate still meant something.” He became an education professor at West Chester State Teachers College, where my mother, Elizabeth Hope Copeland, had graduated. My mother raised four girls and one boy, of which I am the middle child. My parents are deceased and my siblings are estranged. My fiancé, Robert H. Dobrow, was a fighter pilot in the Marine Corps. In 1974, his plane crashed, his parachute did not open, and we buried him in a cemetery on Long Island. I could say a great deal about him, or nothing; there is no middle ground. I have loved other men; Bob was my soul mate. The single greatest determinate of who I am and what my life has been is that I inherited my father’s gene for bipolar disorder, type II. Associated with all bipolar disorders is executive dysfunction, a learning disability that interferes with the ability to sort and organize. Despite an I.Q. of 139, I failed twelve subjects and got expelled from high school and prep school. I attended Syracuse University and Onondaga Community College and got an associate’s degree after twenty-five years. I am nothing if not tenacious. Gifted with intelligence, constrained by disability, and compromised by depression, my employment was limited to entry level jobs. Being female in the 1960’s meant that I did office work—billing at the university library, calling out telegrams at Western Union, and filing papers at a law firm. During one decade, I worked at about a hundred different places as a temporary secretary. I worked for hospitals, banks, manufacturers and others, including the county government. I quit the District Attorney’s Office to manage a gas station; it was more honest work. After Bob’s death, I started taking antidepressants. Following doctor’s orders, I took them every day for twenty-six years. During that time, I attempted%2

August Progress Report


Good morning, Readers. It’s zero-dark-thirty and I can’t sleep so I’ve been cruising statistics. Despite the fact that I haven’t posted for a month, I’m still getting an average of 45 readers a day. CPEP, Ativan and “Beyond Recovery” continue … Continue reading

Posted in depression, drugs, mental health | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Status Update


My energies currently are devoted to producing a book on depression, drugs, psychiatry and recovery, circa 1971-2013. Chapter first-paragraphs are previewed on my Facebook page. Hopefully, before the summer is out the book will be available for sale. What’s your … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Recommended Reading


I recommend http://pamelaspirowagner.com/ Pam is an intelligent, articulate woman whose blog is well worth reading. As she says “Dum spiro spero: While I breathe, I hope.” Let’s support her as she speaks the truth and works for justice.

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Board Certified and Brain Dead


So I went to the Adult Medicine Clinic at Upstate Medical Center, or whatever it’s being called this year. Periodically Upstate tweaks its name—and all its letterhead and signage, which costs about a million dollars—but who really cares and what … Continue reading

Posted in doctor, mental illness, patient, physician, psychiatrist, Upstate Medical Center | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Us vs. St. Joseph’s Inpatient Psychiatry


News from MC, a fellow victim: This is almost a full year later [after http://behindthelockeddoors.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/greetings-gentlefolk/ ] and I was just recently released from the 3-6 unit [St. Joseph’s Hospital, inpatient psychiatry]. Nothing has changed from what you wrote other than … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Comes the Revolution . . .


Here’s the reason why us psychiatric types are so angry at the medical types: you keep conceptualizing mental illness the way you do physical illness. Physical illness is IN the body: pneumonia, appendicitis, cancer. These are things that are wholly … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

You and Your Antidepressant


Things Your Doctor Should Tell You About Antidepressants September 12, 2012 By Paul W. Andrews, Lyndsey Gott & J. Anderson Thomson, Jr. Antidepressant medication is the most commonly prescribed treatment for people with depression. They are also commonly prescribed for … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

God, Psychiatry and Me: 2013


First, in the matter of Crowley and Crowley vs. Gottlieb, the trial is scheduled to start March 17 at 8:30 a.m. in Kent County, Michigan. “There are specific allegations for Count 1 – Medical Malpractice; Count 2 – Ordinary Negligence … Continue reading

Posted in depression, doctor, drugs, mental health, mental illness, patient, physician, psychiatry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Setting the Record Straight


To the NYS Dept. of Health: My name is Anne C Woodlen.  I have been in Crouse Hospital in Syracuse for 82 days.  I am in room xxxx, phone (315) xxx-xxxx, and this is my complaint against Crouse Hospital for … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Yeah, You Really are Sick


As you may know, I have two blogs, “Behind the Locked Doors of Inpatient Psychiatry” and “Notes in Passing,” and a strange thing has happened.  As I have been writing about fatigue, I have been posting the same pieces to both blogs.  The … Continue reading

Posted in depression, doctor, drugs, mental illness, physician, psychiatric patient | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments