For centuries women have been the victims of abuse under the label of ‘mental health’. Author Jimmy Smyth tackles the uncomfortable truth about the brutality exacted upon women by families, friends, clergy, doctors, nurses and the state in his latest work It Was More Fun In Hell.
The former health service professional has undertaken detailed research into the horrors endured by women – often tortured and abused – who were left disenfranchised and powerless. Physical and mental pain is told in unvarnished reporting; and focuses on the terrible case of one young woman, Frances Farmer.
The fact that so much pain was part of society is a shocking truth that Jimmy felt needs told before we forget, or repeat the horror…
As well a being an author of several children books and non-fiction works the Northern Ireland based writer is also a counsellor, life coach and mindfulness teacher for a number of charities and is a partner in the Health and Wellbeing Company.
One of Jimmy’s previous works The Journey tells the fictionalised story of an institutionalised young woman, Mary, who slowly becomes stripped of everything – her happiness, her freedom, her family, her friends and finally her sanity. It Was More Fun In Hell is the extension of that work, outlining appalling treatment that passed as ‘normal’.
His research has turned up horrendous stories of imprisonment, slavery and lobotomies that he believes need to be told. This book is a painful read, but it needs to be read.
“For too long there has been silence about the treatment of women.” Jimmy Smyth