Unsent Letters

Unsent Letters

Peggy is a patient of African Caribbean origin detained in a medium secure unit. Her son Bradley has been adopted and the terms of the adoption are as such that she can only make contact with Bradley by sending cards on his birthday to a PO Box address. The play is constructed as a series of monologues presented on a number of Bradley's birthdays and symbolising letters Peggy might have sent to her son had she been permitted to. In these 'unsent letters' she movingly shares significant childhood and adult experiences including those gained in a variety of settings in which she has been detained. She also vividly describes her discharge back into the community and how, when faced with many issues including loneliness and stigma, she reverts to her past offending behaviour. Through skilfully conveys descriptions, a cast of characters are revealed including Peggy's Jamaican prints, her drug dealing boyfriend, mental health professionals and fellow patients. This provides an invaluable insight into the experiences of BME patients, the attitudes of staff and how these impact on the lives of those detained in secure mental health settings.

 

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