Autovideography: The Lived Experience of Recovery for Adults with Serious Mental Illness

Ryan Petros, Phyllis Solomon, Sheila Linz, Marissa DeCesaris, Nancy P. Hanrahan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Mental health services have been transforming toward a recovery orientation for more than a decade, yet a robust understanding of recovery eludes many providers, and consensus on a conceptual definition has yet to be reached. This article examines mental health consumers’ lived experience of recovery and evaluates the usefulness and comprehensiveness of CHIME, a major framework conceptually defining recovery for adults with serious mental illness. Researchers partnered with a mental health association in a major US city to engage in research with graduates of a recovery and education class for adults diagnosed with serious mental illness. Twelve participants were loaned video cameras and invited to “Tell us about your recovery” through autovideography. Of the 12 participants, six produced videos directly responding to the overall research question and were subsequently included in the present analysis. Data were analyzed thematically, and CHIME adequately represented the major domains presented in consumer videos with two notable modifications: subdomains of “reciprocity” within relationships and “contributing to others” were added to comprehensively represent consumer perspectives about recovery. Adding two subdomains to CHIME more effectively represents consumer narratives about recovery, contributes to the social construction of the personhood of people with serious mental illness, and offers a more robust description of the process of recovery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)417-426
Number of pages10
JournalPsychiatric Quarterly
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


  • Autovideography
  • Mental health
  • Mental illness
  • Reciprocity
  • Recovery


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