Mad story


Hand reaching to help volunteer

CONTEST! – FLASH CALL For Cover Art Submissions for Inaugural Issue!

This is a contest to have your work featured on Issue 1 of The Mad Times!

Mad Pride Logo surrounded by a tree that is made of people.
An early attempt at a Mad Pride Logo…we need your help (by Tim Brown)

Mad Times is a space for you to share your Mad art and creativity. We are holding a cover contest for our inaugural issue. The theme is universal: this is an introduction. We are thinking about… beginnings, initial psych experiences, Mad Pride, newspaper style.
Art that incorporates “Mad Times” is favourable, but everything and anything will be considered.



Feel free to share widely.


Your work will be an important part of the first issue of Mad Times.

Mad Times is a publication by Mad Pride Toronto. Mad Times Magazine aims to create an open forum for Mad writers, artists, and activists to share their art and voices with the broader community.

We will choose one image for the cover (print, online). We will also choose other images for the online version of Mad Times.

Submitting work for consideration is easy. Email us samples of your work (high res JPG files), along with a short bio (Do you identify as Mad, consumer survivor, psych survivor or otherwise been in the psychiatric system?), and a description of the work.

Please include the following with your submission:
• Your Name (and company name if you have one)
• Contact information (Phone, Cell, Email)
• Website (if you have one)

Email submissions to:
There will be another round of calls for future issues. We appreciate your hard work. We are all volunteers. We will have a longer lead time for future issues.


Mad Pride Toronto celebrates, empowers and builds community for people who identify as Mad, consumer survivors, psychiatric survivors, mentally ill, mentally awesome, and normal. We will present Toronto’s Mad Pride Week 2017 (July 10-16).



Saraƒin is a writer, illustrator, cartoonist, and mad identified person. Asylum Squad, the webcomic, was born during a year long stay in a Toronto mental institution as a creative means of passing Saraƒin’s time. She will be selling her work at the Mad Hatter Street Fair and Marketplace.

Picture of Asylum Squad Web Comic
Asylum Squad – Saraƒin’s long running Mad Comic!
  1. What are you most excited about with your new book, Asylum Squad: The Jung Ones 2?
I am excited, as I always am, at the prospect of making new fans, and advancing the storyline.  This book was the most action packed in the series thus far, and was a joy to work on.
  1. What do we need to know from previous issues to understand the new book?

It helps to have at least read The Jung Ones pt 1, even better to have read Monster Hospital 1 & 2.  There are recaps in each new volume of events that occurred in previous books.  Basically, at this point, Liz Madder and company are well into the Ajna Project: an experimental drug treatment program based on Jungian psychiatry, that they signed up for, and were accepted into, during their stay at St Dymphna’s psychiatric hospital.

  1. How do you describe your experience with madness? 
I do not like psychiatric labels, for I have been given many in my life, and none of them seemed to stick or describe me very well.  I prefer to use the term Mad, even though I don’t consider myself a “sufferer of mental illness” – rather, I feel that I see the world through an unusual perspective due to a form of spiritual emergency that started in my mid 20s.
  1. What does Mad Pride mean to you?



Baby Crying. Captions People spot me as a difficult child

I’m going to become a Mom near the end of 2016. While the unwanted life, birth and parenting advice is starting to trickle in (“You and your partner should really be married first,” “Don’t think for one second you can give birth without an epidural,” “Make sure you put your child in daycare.”) I find myself fearful about what people will think and say about me as a “Mad Mother”.

I cannot be the only Mad Parent out there that feels the pressure to go above and beyond to “prove” that they are capable.

I have been working with children, ages 18 months-13 years old, for a little over 8 years and have a background in early childhood education. I am very confident in my ability to be a Mom. But when I see pictures like this,

Baby Crying. Captions People spot me as a difficult child
Hey Mad Moms … Ready for some Guilt – Unhelpful picture indicating that “I am a difficult child because my mom has Border Line Personality”

as a person with the Borderline Personality label, I can feel my emotions rise and desire to protect myself and my family from the mean people who may look at me and think that I will fail my child because of my label rising.

To add to the injury of this picture, I found it on Facebook, posted by a Facebook Group I “Like” that is supposed to be supportive of the BPD community. Sharing photos and “research” that blanket all women with a BPD label as being bad mothers is shameful and offensive. (more…)


What Madness has taught me - Kristen Bellows

I fought tooth and nail to not be the depressed person I was told I was. A youth psychiatrist, in 2005, told me that I would never recover and would need medication for the rest of my life. I didn’t know any other way, except what the psychiatrist told me, and I fighting_tooth_and_nail_5_x_7_invitation_card-rf9cb544c3f324bc1bc0dea7e373e8d7f_zk9c4_324hated that way. I used to think I was sick, I was told I was sick and people seemed to dislike me because I was sick. Even the quest to make me “not sick” made me feel worse and affected how people saw me, and not for the better. For me, a diagnosis of a mental illness was a damned if you do and damned if you don’t situation.

madNEWprideshirtSmThe day I learned about Madness was the day I stopped being sick. It was the day I began to heal from my past wounds caused by psychiatry, society and myself. It was the day I found myself. It was the day I found my value and strength. Madness opened me up to a rich history of people who have felt, thought and experienced things differently and were celebrated not labeled as sick. Madness taught me about neurodiversity, that all of our brains have different structuring and levels of functioning and are supposed to be that way. And Madness taught me about sanism and how what I was condemned to be, a sick, depressed person, was the result of discrimination and not a flaw on my part.