‘Voices from the Shadows’ shows the brave and sometimes heartrending stories of five ME patients and their carers, along with input from Dr Nigel Speight, Prof Leonard Jason and Prof Malcolm Hooper. These were filmed and edited between 2009 and 2011, by the brother and mother of an ME patient in the UK. It shows the devastating consequences that occur when patients are disbelieved and the illness is misunderstood. Severe and lasting relapse occurs when patients are given inappropriate psychological or behavioural management: management that ignores the severe amplification of symptoms that can be caused by increased physical or mental activity or exposure to stimuli, and by further infections.
A belief in behavioural and psychological causes, particularly when ME becomes very severe and chronic, following mismanagement, is still taught to medical students and healthcare professionals in the UK. As a consequence, situations similar to those shown in the film continue to occur.
‘Voices from the Shadows’ received its premiere at the prestigious Mill Valley film festival near San Francisco in 2011, where it won the audience award for favourite international doc. The film has been shown in many countries and in different venues - from parliament buildings to cinemas, universities and homes - from the IACFS/ME conference in Ottawa 20011, to the Stanford ME /CFS Symposium 2014.
The film is in English with subtitles in Swedish, Dutch, Spanish, French, Italian, Czech, German, Japanese and English.
We consider this film to be unsuitable viewing for children and young people with ME.
Further info at voicesfromtheshadowsfilm.co.uk