Call Me “The Doctor”


I seem to have generated unexpected ire with my biographical information. This deserves more than just a few lines in the reply section. When I hear strong reactions, I suspect an iceberg. In this case, there may be two icebergs.

First, there are those who let me know they find it offensive that a good-natured and intelligent woman, as I see myself, could be drawn to the practice of psychiatry by the happy feeling of having fun at work and the desire to help others. This concept strikes them as unbelievable.

Second. The simple statement that I have a medical degree and professional title triggers angry reactions from some folks. For a few, this is not an innocuous reaction.

My understanding of the mission of Robert Whitaker’s webzine is to foster cooperative discussion and help move us beyond the current pill-based medical paradigm toward better models to reduce human suffering. I have gotten the feeling from a couple of participants in this discussion that the addition of my psychiatrist’s paddle to this boat is not entirely welcome. Still, we are all in this one boat.

First, happy and fun. Then, names and titles.

The idea that I could smile and have fun at work in a locked psychiatric unit and that I could enjoy my time with patients, for a few, paints me with the tar of Nazi genocide.

Wow. I had no idea.

I wrote about my sense of happiness and fun with the thought that people would like to know that I, as a human being and psychiatrist, have found my path though the same leadings of the spirit as others who enjoy their work.

I regret that my enjoyment of my work troubles people. However, I will not stop looking for ways to feel happy and have fun, whatever work I do. I don’t work any longer than necessary where there is no “fun” or “smiling”. I once took a mental health clinic job that lacked “fun”. I walked away on day two.

My dentist takes genuine enjoyment when he pulls teeth or drills cavities. I would not so I don’t work there. His obvious fun in his professional work makes it easier for me to go there when I need to. I have “fired” dentists whose motives to be at work did not include any obvious happiness.

I would feel sad if you told me you never have “fun” at your work and are not “happy” there. Whether I want help with a painful gall bladder or painful grief, I hope to locate a helping professional who is there because this is pleasant and fun for her.

I’ve met doctors who were not having fun. The results I’ve gotten in those situations were not useful. Even in non-medical settings, I’ve found the outcomes better if the person enjoys what they do.

The list of things that make me smile and happy at my work are pretty much the same as others in helping professions: seeing people take their personal power back, watching them find ways to feel happy and helping them suffer less.

Now, as far as names and titles go:

I do introduce myself to my patients as Dr. Keys. I tell them they may call me Alice and ask what they would like to be called. I think it’s clarifying to let people know my professional designation, especially in crisis work where this is not always clear because patients see many new “providers” in one trip.

I disagree with the assumption that stepping into my role as physician by calling myself a “doctor” when I am with a “patient” is inherently wrong or hurtful. When you go to professionals for help, you seek expertise. When you feel overwhelmed, out of personal resources and don’t know what to do, you want to talk to someone who has ideas about what to do next.

Back to my dentist. He is my doctor. I am his patient. I certainly do not feel “trivialized” or “infantilized” by this labeling in the context of our relationship. I go there because he has ways to help that I can’t manage alone. I call him “the doctor”.

I also call my dog’s veterinarian “the doctor”. Heck. I even call my doctor, “the doctor” and my kids’ pediatrician, “the doctor”. It’s what they are.

So am I.

A doctor, that is.

I’ve seen over the years, particularly in community mental health work, a constant re-naming.

Remember. Words create the world. Words matter. The naming of things makes a powerful difference.

In the early nineties, I was no longer called a physician or doctor or even a psychiatrist, but a “prescriber” in community mental health. I was introduced by first name only. No white coats. I was told that the “clients” were too “sensitive” for me to wear a white coat or be called a doctor in front of them. The patients had to ask me “So, are you a doctor?”

I find this “prescriber” designation to be an offensive trivialization of the depth and breadth of my skills and education. I was in school and professional training until the age of 31. I am licensed to practice medicine and surgery by the state. But with this “prescriber” label I am reduced to an interchangeable cog in the closet with a prescription pad attached to my hand.

These days I am referred to as the “LMP”. It stands for “licensed medical provider” to those in charge of such renaming. But to me, in routine medical history taking, it stands for the first day of your “last menstrual period”.

I suspect motives behind this professional renaming may include the desires of pharmaceutical purveyors to broaden the river of drugs that leads from their wellspring, through third party payers and to what we now call “consumers of mental health services”.

To increase patient “access” to drugs, there was a political movement that lead to prescription writing for nurses and, in Oregon now, for naturopaths as well. Psychologists have snagged this “prescribing privilege” in two states and the military. Social workers have lobbied to snag this “LMP” designation. I wonder where the money to back these agendas comes from.

If you lower the common denominator from physician to “prescriber”, then anyone can do this job. Perhaps the masters degree educators label individuals with psychiatric diagnoses in Oregon could also be given a prescription pad. Think of the improved rate of flow of psycho-stimulants to our school children (insert irony here).

My patients have also been renamed: “clients”, “CMI”, “consumers” and “SPMI”. I have heard  the word “visitors” in use. One new name I learned recently is “citizen”.

Here’s my rant:

Architects have “clients”. “Consumers” eat and drink things. “Guests” come over in the afternoon for tea. “Visitors” drop by. “Citizens” have membership in a nation. I frequently treat patients that are not “citizens” of this country.

Prescribers only prescribe. LMP is the first day of your last menstrual period.

I am “the doctor” when I am with my “patient”.

Please call me “the Doctor.”


Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.


  1. To be honest, I prefer doctors to be doctors and I even prefer them to wear white coats so I can identify who is who- but then I am old-fashioned. For some reason some people writing on this webzine seem to be tarring all psychiatrists with the same brush without giving anyone a chance to put their point accross. I was a target too because I dared to say that my son’s psychiatrist was a nice and well-meaning person even if he got things wrong. Actually I hope he will have learned something new from my son’s case which was rather unusual and that is probably why things went wrong. And yes, I am glad you enjoy your work and that is because you genuinely want to help and learn as you go along.For some reason it is also taboo to say that medications do help sometimes when used cautiously at the right time. People forget that doctors are just human beings. Doctors shouldn’t set themselves up though as being omniscient Gods which they do sometimes

  2. Dr. Keys, I resonate with your post, again! And speaking of having fun, one of my favorite social workers many years ago always used to encourage people he worked with to become “fun persons” and he was quite good at encouraging and coaxing and supporting in that direction. I see nothing wrong with trying to move the field toward a little more humor and learning to not take everything with such gravity. Thank you!

  3. Fun is what’s missing in mental health. I had fun with a business plan proposal and the judges chastised us for not taking this seriously enough. Yet in my work as a peer specialist, I’d ask people, “When the last time you have done something fun?” and the answer would be weeks ago if at all. That’s really the crux of the issue for many people who are stuck with labels and medications.

  4. I’m sure millions of psychiatry’s subjects would love to have as much choice in psychiatry as you have found in your dental care.

    When you speak repeatedly in recent days of ‘crisis work’, are you referring to involuntary psychiatry?

    I think you’d have a very hard task in actually directly quoting anyone, anywhere in the comments painting you personally with the tar of Nazi genocide. This is not how I feel, and I think you’ve misinterpreted some things.

    People talking broadly about how Nazi doctors and nurses rationalized away their decision to use force and violence, and how victims of psychiatry’s force and violence can come to understand how professionals rationalize using force and violence in 2012, by studying the sociology of humans rationalizing violent acts in many contexts, is all you will find if you went back and looked for the mentions of Nazi doctors in recent days in the comments on here.

    I seek to understand and comprehend how a desire to help, can ever be more important than a moral line in the sand never to employ violence and force in that job that the person who has a desire to help is employed in. I seek to understand this broadly, not as it applies to you personally, but as it applies to all who have ever chosen to work in a locked ward, because I know that violence and force is a part of that system, a part of that job, a part of that workplace. I don’t doubt for a second the sincerity of the ‘desire to help’ in many of these professionals. What I struggle to understand is how they rationalize locking up innocent people and forcibly drugging/electroshocking them and forcibly indoctrinating them into psychiatry’s belief system.

    I’ve found great solace and understanding in studying the Nazi doctors, the Japanese world war 2 medical experiments, the American syphilis medical experiments, I’ve studied death penalty executioners, US torture programs in the 2000s, soldiers and war, police tactics and techniques, the drug war, prison sociology, anything I can get my hands on to understand the mindset of people who employ force and violence against captive people in their work.

    Why do I track down every shred of information I can on this, and speak to people about it? because I always wanted to understand why I was the one left with endless trauma from the violence done to me in the name of forced psychiatry and in the name of someone more powerful than me’s idea of ‘help’, and how they were able to rationalize doing such harm for a living. I will always want to come to understand this better. So when people are having a discussion and the Nazi doctors are mentioned, it is in this context of wanting to seek an understanding in the study of how humans rationalize away doing violent acts to those being dominated by a system.

    In terms of searching your own life for the meanings and choices you applied to your own relationships with dentists, veterinarians, and so on, while I’m extremely glad you don’t feel infantilized by your relationship with your dentist, it pays to remember that many people on here had their ‘relationships’ with psychiatrists violently forced on them without consent. And not only that, unlike other violent assaults, these assaults are legalized, and the perpetrators still pose a threat to us and could and would assault us again at any given moment if we ever find ourselves back in that involuntary relationship. So this isn’t some ‘experience’ people have had with psychiatry, it is the clear and present threat they live with every day of their lives while psychiatry remains powerful enough to throw their human rights into the meat grinder with the stroke of a pen.

    • I am sorry to hear you have been coerced in a way that you imply was not justified. I am curious to know if it was in the past, or maybe you were unlucky and encountered a abusive doctor, that either abused the system or abused your trust in a way you signed papers that you would not have signed in retrospect.
      From my understanding, nowadays the conditions for involuntarily treatment require someone being a danger to himself or others, and a judge can be involved to avoid abuse. Or am I too naive about the legal requirements for involuntary commitment in America today? Are you claiming that the laws are not as I believe they are, or that they are bad in some ways or that they are not applied correctly?

      • “From my understanding, nowadays the conditions for involuntarily treatment require someone being a danger to himself or others,”

        I would have thought the ‘conditions’ for any kind of ‘treatment’ be the demonstrable existence of a real disease. But that is beside the point.

        Your understanding is wrong. Unless of course, you personally would feel like placing your complete trust in a determination of ‘dangerousness’ forced upon you without an attorney, without any due process rights to evidence testing, without even the right to a phone call, on the say so of one psychiatrist, behind closed doors, which is how it is done, pal.

        And we are not simply talking about locking people up, we are talking about the government altering the functioning of their biology by brute force before anyone has been before a judge, when the ‘doctors’ perpetrating this cannot even demonstrate that the biology is diseased.

        If you also would like to see yourself in the ‘completely equal’ adversarial hearing of being the mental patient versus the ‘expert witness’ psychiatrist, before a judge that sides with the psychiatrist 99% of the time, be my guest.

        And we haven’t even touched upon the community commitment laws.

        But it’s ok, the government has told you that only those with the objectively determined and evidence tested ‘fact’ about them of ‘are’ a ‘danger to self or others’ have their liberty taken away, just like all government assertions, I would take them with a grain of salt.

        I find it very disconcerting that the only threshold you hold government to is to somehow have a psychiatrist ‘prove’ behind closed doors that someone is ‘dangerous’ and you’re happy to completely ignore the fact that nobody’s biology is proven diseased, yet you’re fine with people being ‘justifiably’ involuntarily treated.

        But forget all that sir, let’s say someone was a danger to others? would that not then make them a criminal who the police can charge with conspiracy?

        And let’s also take for a second that someone was suicidal, why is FORCED DRUGGING AND FORCED PSYCHIATRY the official solution handed a government monopoly in response to such an event?

        Take a look around this site, and tell me if you think the pseudoscience that is psychiatry should be something the government is giving so much power to?

      • In the state where I live, two people can go down to the sherrif’s department and swear that someone is a danger to themselves or others, and two deputies are sent out to pick the person up and bring them to court. Or the person is sent a paper telling them to appear at court on a certain date and time. Then the judge decides if the person is going to end up in the state hospital for a seven day evaluation or not. Your chances to go free hinge very much on who the judge is who hears your case. With some, no matter how erudite and sane you sound when you get to speak for yourself you end up in the wonderful care of the state hospital where I work. Our hospital is endeing up as a penal colony at this point. It’s easier to end up in the system than you think and you’d better hope that you never have to find out through personal experience. Many of the people who have issues can live fine on the outside but family members don’t approve or want to control them and when the person doesn’t cooperate two people from the family go down and swear out the paper that sets the deputies in motion to find the person and drag them to court and then to the hospital. It is disgusting.

          • Good question and a fair one. I have this stupid idea that maybe, just maybe, I might be able to make a small difference in the system. Stupid I know, but I’m stubborn.

          • I do think the system should be improved. And I think it is more likely to happen by taking into account the trade-off faced by the system. There are people who are dangerous to themselves (or others), and the system in place will always have both false-positive (people wrongly coerced) and false-negative (people dying or getting injured in a predictable way). The way the system should be improved is by making proposals that will reduce both false-positive and false-negative, such proposals can be easily endorsed (changing the balance between false-positive and false-negative is more likely to encounter some opposition).

          • I cringe when I hear people talk about shifting the balance of false positives and so on.

            I don’t believe forced psychiatry is the appropriate response to people who commit crimes or conspire to commit crimes against others (danger to others), and nor do I believe so called danger to self, is something that psychiatry should be used as the solution for. I note you seem to not calling for a system to take away the liberty of people who harm themselves more slowly, as in eating too much.

            In the end, your forced psychiatry system becomes nothing more than a suicide prevention thing, and even then how is forced brain alteration justified?

            People who speak of correcting the balance of the system are people who are prepared to accept the system destroying some lives, collateral damage, in order to help other lives.

            I don’t and can’t accept that because I know I could be the collateral damage.

            In which case all people say is ‘sorry to hear that’.

      • Stanley, You obviously don’t have a clue about the reality of what’s going on or don’t want to admit it!!! And I don’t like your word “imply” to Anonymous since it is patronizing. Anonymous is very intelligent, insightful and well able to describe the fear, force and fraud all too typical of mainstream psychiatry to falsely accuse people to get them involuntarily committed to forced drugging and loss of all human rights and even force them to betray themselves by admitting they are mentally ill just like Communist brainwashing in prison camps. I think Anonymous has made some other very astute observations about having a huge need to try to understand the horror of man’s inhumanity to man and the “forces” behind it with similar situations like Nazi and other totalitarian principles all too applicable here.

        And sadly, this is not fun!!

        • I am as motivated than anybody else to see psychiatry be changed or replaced in a radical fashion. I have seen many people accept lifelong psychiatric labels, and there is nothing that revolts me more than this lifelong label. As you do, I consider brainwashing the fact that some patients are no longer even able to believe they can improve. I am not familiar at all with forced psychiatric treatment, so I am clueless there, sorry if my questions sounded inquisitive. And I agree ‘imply’ was a bad choice, sorry for that. That said, I think America is a place where human rights are respected, and I am looking for solutions that can correct abuse without needing to overthrow the existing government, or the justice system (I am not attached at all to the psychiatric establishment, but I honestly think demonizing as a whole reinforces its cohesion, and is thus counter-productive if you want to weaken its influence).

          • When mainstream psychiatry continues to practice their pseudoscience biomedical paradigm though it has been more than exposed as a corrupt selling out to BIG PHARMA/BUSINESS with tons of conflicts of interest despite the fact they have known for all too long they were/are causing enormous harm to millions os people and literally destroying countless lives with impunity for their own professional gain and somebody exposes this, it is not “demonizing” anyone, but merely telling the truth. It’s rather ironic that psychiatry’s targets must act perfectly to avoid getting stigmatized, but when anyone tries to call them to account, they are accused of being negative, attacking them, demonizing them, dwelling on the past and any other guilt tripping device to silence and ignore their critics and those they’ve harmed. You are doing this right now and it’s called gas lighting or crazy making.

            “You shall know the truth and the truth will set you free” or it might make you crazy with enough truth deniers around.

            Many people here have been harmed greatly directly or indirectly with loved ones. So a little empathy for these people not enjoying all of life’s perks as a result of losing so much thanks to psychiatry would be much better than rubbing salt in the wounds! Or directing barbs at people discussing serious reform issues that one person chooses to take personally though it is made clear that is isn’t personal, but about deflecting the next tidal wave of human rights violations in the name of eugenics sought by Dr. Insel, NOW head of NIMH!

          • Psychiatry uses, in it’s diagnosis, the same sociological constructs that define minority status, poverty, living in a war zone and other forms of trauma. These are groups that already are oppressed, people that can not adhere to statistical based norms, no matter how “crazy” that seems. To say that the behavior of these people is caused by a genetic abnormality rather than looking at the story of their lives, is considered a form of eugenics. And there is still great emphasis on trying to prove this genetic theory in psychiatry. It’s also falsely stated to be based on scientific fact when all there is is implications seen but not proven. Biological psychiatry treating these people as if their body doesn’t have the ability to handle trauma and handing out highly addictive controlled substances becomes a form of disabling them further. The statistical evidence points out that this doesn’t help these group of people, although the drug companies profit. In “developing” countries where there isn’t the amount of money “developed” countries have for these “medications,” it seems that people somehow do learn to deal with their trauma, have less disability, less relapses and more recovery.
            The kind of economic take overs which are reported in the book the Shock Doctrine, are quite similar in how the psychiatric drug companies take advantage of people who are in a destabilized environment: the kind of coercion and exploitation of insecurities that goes on. And those who are already oppressed by poverty, minority status etc. stand to be oppressed one way or the other. Just teaching people non violence, what Jesus, Buddha and many others also taught, might be seen as something “inappropriate” to those maintaining all this “machinery.” A person who is then “justly” seen as oppressed can often learn to let go of these basic tenets of fear. Despite that there was some feeling of loss to not “make it” in the system which adds up gain and loss, victim status and perpetrator status. That’s always been the healing, the atonement that occurs beyond fear…

          • I know lots of good workers who want to change psychiatry from within. Many leave.

            I have mixed feelings about this. They were doing their best in an awful system, but changing such a system one worker at a time is probably not a very good strategy. Also, I don’t like to see my friends driven mad by working in such an inhuman system.

            I think we need to think about how to work with people who work for the system with good intentions and support them in their efforts to work on the behalf of people trapped in it.

    • Speaking as a mother who “forced”psychiatry on her son, and then spent most of my time trying to get him to no longer need psychiatry, I get impatient with the view of people who resent being forced into psychiatry. If anyone is forced, it means there is usually a major problem with the individual’s relationship with his or her environment. This can often mean the person is terrorizing others or inflicting harm on themselves. Repeat psychiatric hospitalizations are the mark of failure, not just the failure of psychiatry to treat the underlying problem, but the failure of the patient to learn better coping mechanisms. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result . It applies as much to biological psychiatry as it does to repeat patients.

      • Many people who get forced into the system against their will are trauma survivors who were traumatized by things that happened to them in their family situation by things that family members did to them. This is why biopsychiatry is so popular with many family members of people with issues; they can point to this bunch of rubbish, quackery, and flim flam tactics and say, “OH we are not the ones to blame for their problem, they have a broken brain!” This is why most people with issues and who’ve been in the system will have nothing to do with NAMI. NAMI is tied into Big Pharma and into biopsychiatry and they all get in bed together, so that family members will not have to take responsibility for the things they did which led to their “loved one” having issues. I have the distinct feeling that you really don’t get it.

        • “This is why biopsychiatry is so popular with many family members of people with issues; they can point to this bunch of rubbish, quackery, and flim flam tactics and say, “OH we are not the ones to blame for their problem, they have a broken brain!”

          This is completely correct. I would even say the moment the quack ideology of biopsychiatry was invented, the notion of the ‘bad parent’ ceased to exist in much of society.

          Bad parents can always find an ally in the shrink willing to falsely declare their son or daughter ‘brain diseased’ by fiat.

        • I have the distinct feeling you see the word “parent” and you jump to “NAMI” parent. Sorry. No. I am against NAMI and have always maintained that biopsychiatry wouldn’t have gotten as far as it has if parents hadn’t favored a damaged brain over a taking a closer look at what in the family environment is causing their child stress. It’s often not very obvious. You appear to hold a rather simplistic view of what constitutes trauma.

      • “Speaking as a mother who “forced”psychiatry on her son, and then spent most of my time trying to get him to no longer need psychiatry, I get impatient with the view of people who resent being forced into psychiatry. ”

        I get impatient with the parents who force their kids into psychiatry. Who are you to declare psychiatry ‘needed’? and furthermore to force this on those who deem it ‘needed’?

        You get impatient with people who resent being forced into psychiatry. That would be laughable if it wasn’t so terrifying.

        • Psychiatry wasn’t needed. Proper help was needed. Where was Open Dialogue or Soteria when we needed it? There are currently almost no alternatives to biological psychiatry but that doesn’t imply that having to use these current “services” means I endorse them. Let’s get real.

      • “Repeat psychiatric hospitalizations are the mark of failure, not just the failure of psychiatry to treat the underlying problem, but the failure of the patient to learn better coping mechanisms. ”

        Did you hear that everyone? it is our fault if we get locked up and forcibly drugged, because we failed to develop better ‘coping mechanisms’.

        • I’m not so sure that this is what Donna was doing. There is something very disturbing to me also by Rossa’s comments but I can’t quite put my finger on it. My brain is sometimes broken but it’s because I took the oh, so wonderful toxic drugs without asking more questions and without asking for informed consent. Anyway, I am disturbed by her remarks and have been since yesterday when I first read them. Of course, she jumped right in and made some kind of statment about me having a very simplistic understanding of trauma but I decided to let it pass since I know enough to know what trauma is without a lecture from someone elese.

      • “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result . It applies as much to biological psychiatry as it does to repeat patients.”

        The difference between “patients” and biological psychiatry is that biological psychiatry keeps doing the same thing over and over again and DOESN’T see the result of what they are doing, nor has any ability to. If they were patients this would be different. And who is terrorizing who, and a danger to whom, and inflicting harm on whom?
        The following statement shows a complete lack of knowledge as to what goes on: “If anyone is forced, it means there is usually a major problem with the individual’s relationship with his or her environment. This can often mean the person is terrorizing others or inflicting harm on themselves.” If anyone is forced it shows that there is a completely lack of interest in what helps and what doesn’t,whether the person has a problem with relationships or environment (which I think every human does) or whether they are said to be terrorizing themselves or others (something which certainly isn’t always the case at all, and most of the time is so highly exaggerated that it’s borderline slander, when someone is seen to be “Crazy” everyone is free to make up inflated stories about what they might do and act like this is most likely from the stories of people who did snap, usually from psychiatric drugs or inhuman treatments thanks to biological psychiatry). Someone with a “mental illness” is MUCH more likely to be a victim than to be violent. Inflicting human rights abuses on people is seen as a treatment and this is compared to the inability of people; whose rights have been taken away from them, their brain disabled, their trust in others ruined and their self worth decimated!?

        And “I get impatient with the view of people who resent being forced into psychiatry.”

        Wow, someone is forced into something that doesn’t help at all (and is no guarantee that they actually had a problem to begin with, except that they don’t respond well to human rights abuses); and when they resent this, one loses patience.

        What’s clear is that you never understood what was going on with your son to begin with and expect him to magically chipper up after being forced into a treatment that I’m sure was not only confusing, dehumanizing and humiliating; but he’s supposed to see as encouragement to ditch all his resentments of it and move on with his life. I don’t even really see that he’s the one that has attachment to resentments; that would take someone who doesn’t want to see what they did to someone else, despite all of the evidence to the contrary; and then still make calculations and decide to resent that it’s because he has “resentments,” and then compares him to the people who abused him.

      • It needs, at least, two to make for a relationship, like between the individual and his/her environment. Looking at the relationships between psychiatrised people and their environment, I again and again observe the environment (and that is both family and psychiatric staff) doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result, just as much as I see the psychiatrised person doing it. I like the Open Dialogue approach that locates the “illness”, understood metaphorically, in the relationship, not in the individual, and works toward having everybody in the relationship become aware of its dysfunctionalities, and eliminate them. Usually people terrorise others because they have been terrorised themselves.

      • And, I should have added, the failure of the family (parents, usually) to learn better coping mechanisms. Fortunately, or unfortunately, biological psychiatry doesn’t teach the person or the family better coping mechanisms. Like most things in life, people have to discover these things for themselves. If you want something done right, you’ve got to do it yourself. (This especially applies when it comes to our own health.)

    • I wish psychiatrists had injected humor into my life instead of injecting me against my will with toxic drugs.

      The fun and humor tends to dissipate out of life when you know you’re now a member of a group that does not even have basic human rights.

        • I find this comment rather judgmental. Donna has passion and I suspect that she has a right to be very passionate. This is what so many people who’ve never been in the system, even though they may be a family member, do not get. We have a right to be angry and passionate and it’s very difficult to express this in wahts that don’t put certain people’s hackles up. I really find it very difficult to read your comments ssometimes but I don’t jump in and do what you just did. Give people a little slack, put yourself in their shoes or in front of their computer monitor, and try to see the world from their experience.

        • Rossa, I do admire the fact that you said you learned all in your family had to learn better coping methods andthat psychiatry is the last place you will find them. You saw that your son shouldn’t be a family scapegoat when you didn’t known some harmful family dynamics might be going on and I respect that very much. Since I was aware of family systems theory, I made sure to avoid that in my own situation. So, I’m glad you could find the truth to set you ALL free!

      • Donna, how does projecting negativity into this help? My son is doing just fine, he does not feel betrayed, and we both reject biopsychiatry. You and I are fans of Robert Whitaker, I presume. So what is your problem? Why do you not adopt positive attitude that goes beyond victimhood? We’re all victims, but I don’t want to wear it on my sleeve.

        • It seems to me that all humans view the world through the lens of our own experience. I am a mother of a survivor and a survivor. I am so very aware of being reticent about saying anything at all in forums like this. Being a mother the same mistrust and disgust directed at bio-maniacs has also been directed at me, it is often directed at parents like myself. I am not so insecure that I believe I need to prove myself worthy of respect. I am also aware when I feel disrespected, mocked and put down.

          This is the second time I have commented on this thread—the first time, I was put down, and I felt disrespected, but I was not surprised, just disappointed again… My point is that this experience coupled with reading through this entire thread again means I will be less likely to post comments in the future. I don’t know every other survivor or participant—and I sure as hell do not know what every single trigger other people may have is. I am real aware of is how hyper-sensitive I am.–I know my main trigger is being invalidated, mocked, ridiculed—being treated as if I am not worthy of respect. The thing about trauma that I’ve noticed, is the more I was traumatized, the more aware I became of the things which traumatized me–

          I do not appreciate being disrespected, no one does. I am a human being, I get it—I have allowed my own anger about my experiences to be a justification for being rude to someone who does not see it like I do…Knowing myself like I do, I will probably do so again countless times before the month is out—hopefully only in my own head, because I don’t believe feeling justified is the same thing as actually BEING justified.

          What matters to me is that there is some place that those involved in any and every capacity with winning Human Rights for those with a psychiatric diagnosis, with an goal to end forced psychiatric treatment can feel safe and not be afraid they will be ridiculed or castigated because they express an opinion or share a personal experience that is not agreed with or is disapproved of…I am a trauma survivor and I am the mother of a trauma survivor–up until almost two years ago I have always said what I wanted to when I wanted. –There are two reasons this is no longer the case. The first is the events which led me to start me blog, and means that I am not as vocal as I was when dealing with ‘professionals’ I say no more than absolutely necessary and I now write the things I used to say to them. The second reason a response to the way I have been corrected, criticized or put down because of how I phrased my thoughts, feelings or experiences is disapproved of or invalidated by another survivor. I suspect this is all an indication of a need for me to develop a thicker skin. I don’t know that I have the desire to do so in order to better tolerate demeaning and disrespectful criticism, or personal attacks as a constructive or healthy way to bring about positive changes. I am real sure I do not want negative feelings about people who, like myself are wanting people with psychiatric diagnoses to be treated with dignity and respect, and to not to have psychiatric treatment forced on them– I was hoping this website may be a place where people are not called names or put down with disparaging comments because they are disagreed with—but maybe there is no such place.

          • Re-reading Becky Murphy’s first comment she refers to, I cannot see where others disrespected? looks like the doctor thanked for participating…

          • Becky,

            Most survivors here have been traumatized, so sometimes we unknowingly unleash others’ triggers without seeing it. Then the triggered person overreacts with an angry remark that may have even started with another person or post in a vicious circle.

            Anyway, I may have been one of the ones who seemed critical of you because I felt criticized by your comment because I was being constantly stalked and criticized by another poster. I realized that this trigger of my own traumatic encounter with psychiatry in the past and the ongoing attacks from the critic had caused me to overreact to another poster to defend myself against this critic.

            Anyway, recognizing this insane merrygoround of clashing egos, I went back and admitted this to the person I criticized and appologized.

            If it was my comment that upset you, I apologize to you too. I hope you comment all the more and feel safe here because as I hope the above proves, sometimes these seeming hurtful responses may have very little to do with you or what you said, but reveals more about the person making the comment. I hope you will confront people when you feel this way and give them a chance to think about if they were fair or just overreacting to a trigger or some other other reason why they seemed to unfairly criticize you. This would probably be best to do when the person has calmed down and can think more clearly.

            When people confront me, it gives me the opportunity to rethink what I said and question if it was triggered by my own painful past or some current stessor. As you admit you have been there enough to know that hurting, traumatized people can hurt people and it’s not necessarily personal or deliberate.

            It’s important to remind each other of this and I realize now that is what you were trying to do but my trigger at the time wouldn’t allow me to “hear it” until you reinforced it just now.

            Thank you for sharing and again I am sorry if you felt attacked by what I said. I am glad you shared your pain and it is a good reminder to us that we should rethink our tendency to shoot from the hip when we may be only repsponding to a trigger instead of the real human being making the comment.

  5. I have the feeling that it’s very difficult for many people in the system or who have been in the system, to really trust psychiatrists. Although “first of all, do no harm,” is supposedly something that psychiatrists vow to carry out, the reality is that many of them are doing horrible harm seven days a week to thousands of people. I keep asking myself how they reconcile this in themselves. I’ve worked alongside psychiatrists as part of the treatment team staff, and I’ve received “treatment” at the hands of three of them. I have to say that the great majority of them were and are egotistical, paternalistic, know it all, pains in the arse. I will never forget the one who diagnosed me. I’d never met him before and the day before I had my appointment I was informed that my only sister had been murdered in New York City. The man never once looked at me in the fifteen minutes he spent asking me questions; he just kept his head down and wrote on his little note pad. When he asked how I was feeling I told him terrible and when he asked why I was feeling terrible I told him of my sister’s murder. Without looking up at me he replied, “Oh, that’s interesting.” No warmth, no concern, no empathy, no feeling, just an “Oh, that’s interesting.” I now work with two psychiatrists, a man and a woman, who I know to be good and wonderful people. However, I am in a quandry as to how to feel about them because they go about drugging people with the toxic drugs five days a week and go merrily on ther way. I can’t reconcile how I feel about them as people with what I know that they do to the people in their care.

    I can only speak for myself and am making assumptions here, which is a dangerous thing to do. We have no real reasons at all to trust psychiatrists and psychiatry. It is difficult to believe that some of you really do care. I know that there really truly are some psychiatrists who do care deeply about people in their care, but who wants to make the first move to try and find out what you are like. It’s an iffy thing and people are gunshy as can be. However, we do have to struggle to take each psychiatrists on an individual basis instead of lumping everyone together in one group and stating that all are the same.

    Personally, I like your posts. It is good to see a psychiatrist, or any doctor these days, who is willing to open themselves up to the world and let everyone peer around inside. That takes guts and I admire you for doing so on this webzine, or whatever it is. It is great to see a doctor who admits to struggling to understand things in new ways, instead of sitting there proclaiming that they have all the answers to everything. Thank you for your willingness to question and struggle and then to talk about what you discover in the whole process.

  6. Dear Anonymos
    Human rights abuses? The majority of people who get committed, which is not easy,need some kind of treatment, or just a time out. People who don’t manage their mental or emotional illness put themselves and others in danger. Extreme behavior is either delt with by you, or the community has to intervine. It’s the law.

    • “Dear Anonymos
      Human rights abuses?”


      “The majority of people who get committed, which is not easy,need some kind of treatment”

      I don’t agree that people you cannot prove have brain diseases deserve to be terrorized with forced drugging.

      “or just a time out.”

      A time out? is that what you call solitary confinement, detention without charge or trial, with no due process? A time out?

      “People who don’t manage their mental or emotional illness put themselves and others in danger.”

      What makes you think there is such a thing as an emotional ‘illness’? What is it about people who eat too much and smoke too much that doesn’t have you calling for them to lose their freedoms?

      “Extreme behavior is either delt with by you, or the community has to intervine. It’s the law.”

      Extreme behavior? we have criminal laws for actions like this.

      You’ll understand that what we are talking about are human rights abuses if you’re ever on the receiving end.

      “It’s the law”. Well, lots of things that are immoral used to be the law my friend. Hopefully we can get the law changed one day so that we can have human rights.

      • At one time slavery was justified by the law, as well as segregation and apartheid. Just because “it’s the law” does not mean that it’s right. This is part of the problem with the supposed “treatment” of people with mental illness these days. You can force them to do anything you want, even though it’s abusive and against all human rights, simply because we’ve involved the law in all of this. People with psychiatric issues are the one group who have no rights and can be forced into treatment against their will. But it’s the law, so it must be okay!

          • Did you ever hear of the “Resistance” in France during WWII? Sometimes you can do some good things under cover. Once again, call me stupid for thinking that I can make a difference.

          • “What is it about your behavior that get’s the System involved? If it is not brain disease then it is your behavior, right?”

            Thoughts, not just behaviors, are what psychiatry uses as justifications to rob people of their rights. Speech, too.

            If I ever committed a behavior that harmed another, I’m prepared to face the criminal sanctions for that.

            Unwanted thoughts, unwanted speech, unwanted behavior that harms nobody, anything labeled ‘bizarre’ is a justification to force psychiatry’s drugs on people.

    • This statement is totally wrong. People lie to have others comitted all the time when one is more powerful, which is mostly men. Husbands still get their wives falsely committed and declared mentally ill if they don’t kill them instead (see book ERASED about all the wife murderers who mostly got away with it)to rob them of custody and all assets. Same with abusive parents. May I ask what planet you live on? Are you part of the “mental health” system???

      • How come male batterers or pedophiles known to cause huge risk and often death to their victims including children are allowed to roam free with no involuntary commitment or forced drugging by psychiatry? All must have heard about theat recent case where the husband murdered his wife and then blew up his children though others were warned including authorities. This happens constantly and psychiatry and the law does nothing. Answer: Mainstream psychiatry mainly preys on women, blacks, children or other minority vulnerable groups that they can exploit, overpower and abuse with impunity. Psychiatry has the same prejudices as the rest of society and more so due to its junk science DSM.

        Just for the record, I am not attacking Dr. Keys but only bring up some huge problems within the profession.

        • Peace Donna, I’m not lecturing you just reminding myself and sharing something that might help if you can relate to it, which is possible despite my “psychotic” rambling. Here’s more: There’s this legend that aboriginals could disappear into the dessert. This, I understand, happened because their culture didn’t contain fear, wasn’t based on traumatizing people in order to control behavior and create “harmony”; and so when confronted with an invader with a gun ready to shoot them, their response wasn’t fear based. They could send an energy of love to the “attacker”; their reflexes were such that they could respond to the higher self of the “attacker” without judgment, not see them as doing anything wrong in regards to where they were coming from, that they were acting from the best that they could, but simply put forth that they could not condone their behavior. The result was that there was a “disconnect” between the higher self of the “attacker” and his earthly brain. He stopped seeing the aboriginal, although they were still there. Thus the attacker walked away and spread this myth that aboriginals could disappear into the dessert. Or one might say that who a person is is beyond what one can “see”, that the mind transcends this limitation that is thought to be “objective” regarding the physical senses. This always exists, and so the connection is lost when there’s no love, because there is no connection there when this is missing, although we still remain connected beyond being separate. A Philipino healers hand (the one’s called psychic surgeons) might be able to move through all this stuff that is so “objective” and being attracted to what is causing a blockage allow his hands to be used to remove it (although who the person was was supposed to be more stable physically). Then “physical” healing takes places because it’s not physical. The same, reality is supposed to be more stable to validate the fear based control tactics which are used when people believe traumatizing others creates harmony.

      • Like the wise Nijinksy said, I’m not going to read these windy posts any more and try to riddle my way through them only to make myself nauseated. I’ve had enough of your neverending heroics and complaints against me today on behalf of biological psychiatry ‘s abuses of power!!

        • Donna, I admire you just letting it go. There’s no sense in someone who tries to defend a system which has caused a whole epidemic; as if there’s a damned if you do and damned if you don’t situation which um….. “excuses” the psychiatrists because they are trying to make a thoughtful decision (!?!?!?!?!?). These constant posts where things have been turned around beyond recognizing what they themselves are doing; and then after this acrobatic contortion is accomplished, this strange emblem still hangs there “place of healing” and because someone is “literate” they think they’re privy to what’s going on. This is more incoherent then anything the psychiatrists would label , as referred to: “psychosis” and things such as irrational-sounding beliefs, negative self-talk and reactions to trauma is a lot wider and less clear than we sometimes suppose.

          yep irrational sounding beliefs such as these drugs will heal you, negative self-talk such as these drugs will heal you, reactions to trauma such as these drugs will heal you… just fill in the blank

          attention deficit such as “these drugs will heal you.”

        • Thanks Nijinksy. Your comments have provided me with a great deal of consolation and lots of common sense when constantly attacked and oppressed by those insisting on defending the indefensible with their neverending Orwellian doublespeak and/or shifting the blame to others, which amounts to the typical Nuremburg Trial defense of ” I was only following orders,” which any decent human will see as an indefensible nondefense.

        • I know Donna. Calm down, you’re not as alone as you think. Sometimes, when you get riled up you can’t see the not so little “little” things that are there for you. I’m not lecturing you, just reminding myself not to get so riled up I can’t see straight and might lash out at anything that comes along that might help and distract me from my anger. Seriously. None of us are separate from each other. It’s hard to believe that when you let go of anger towards another then you are reinstating something human that does communicate, even when this is just in your mind, a picture of what it is to be human that you allow to be there for all people, because it is there, beyond anger, free of the limitations anger would demand exist. Again, I’m saying this to remind myself. I, like so many of us, have had it that I got completely crazy because of the paranoia of people who look at labels, who look at content (DSM epitaphs…tomb markers). So, I experienced this lack of understanding and ended up in the “ghetto” of emotional life, experienced what “psychosis” is (something a psychiatric degree will not teach anyone, you have to have been there); and now have learned to let even that go (although it was teaching me to let go of fear, rather than it was a disease). There’s also this amazing spiritual aspect to psychosis, like there is for anyone that has been abandoned by the world. It’s not as if the machinery of society created the Universe (Monsanto copyrights new genetic model for the next big bang and is selling stocks in this creating a financial bubble which won’t burst for another 20 years…)…It’s actually something else that created the Universe, and this doesn’t have the fear based tactics of control, this doesn’t bankrupt everyone with guilt (no matter who you are and what you’ve done there’s no judgment on anyone). This is still there for anyone who has experienced what kind of fear runs people’s “cognition” making it impossible for them to really invest in this fear anymore and be “normal” or adhere to “statistical based norms.” Becoming psychotic is a way of acting out how ridiculous this is. At least it was for me, when I realized how fear was making me believe I needed to think things were going on which weren’t, things which took on “psychotic” dimensions, although this term “psychotic” breaks down when you look at the symbolism of my “non reality based thoughts” closer. In their symbolism and the emotional, cognitive and intuitive connections they have with life, they are much closer to reality than anything that judges them as being unrealistic. Nor do they have any of the danger put on them. The real danger is those labeling it as “psychotic” and trying to rob a person of the ability to experience what is designed (by nature) to help them let go of fears, find a true community and see there’s something there beyond it that does heal and no longer invest in the illusions that feed what causes the societal fears that causes the riffs in society that don’t attend to people which causes the behavior that traumatized them to begin with. Something does amend everything, I discovered. There’s not big or little about it. And it has no opposite, since it is real despite being as invisible as the connections the mind makes that are labeled as being “psychotic.” Anyhow PEACEOUT! IT”S SUCH A BEAUTIFUL DAY!

        • Peace Donna, I’m not lecturing you just reminding myself and sharing something that might help if you can relate to it, which is possible despite my “psychotic” rambling. Here’s more: There’s this legend that aboriginals could disappear into the dessert. This, I understand, happened because their culture didn’t contain fear, wasn’t based on traumatizing people in order to control behavior and create “harmony”; and so when confronted with an invader with a gun ready to shoot them, their response wasn’t fear based. They could send an energy of love to the “attacker”; their reflexes were such that they could respond to the higher self of the “attacker” without judgment, not see them as doing anything wrong in regards to where they were coming from, that they were acting from the best that they could, but simply put forth that they could not condone their behavior. The result was that there was a “disconnect” between the higher self of the “attacker” and his earthly brain. He stopped seeing the aboriginal, although they were still there. Thus the attacker walked away and spread this myth that aboriginals could disappear into the dessert. Or one might say that who a person is is beyond what one can “see”, that the mind transcends this limitation that is thought to be “objective” regarding the physical senses. This always exists, and so the connection is lost when there’s no love, because there is no connection there when this is missing, although we still remain connected beyond being separate. A Philipino healers hand (the one’s called psychic surgeons) might be able to move through all this stuff that is so “objective” and being attracted to what is causing a blockage allow his hands to be used to remove it (although who the person was was supposed to be more stable physically). Then “physical” healing takes places because it’s not physical. The same, reality is supposed to be more stable to validate the fear based control tactics which are used when people believe traumatizing others creates harmony.

        • Dr. Keys,

          I agree that psychiatrists like you may not have had much say in how psychiatry was developed by the key academics, APA and other leaders. But, I have studied this history in depth and these top leaders or KOL’s as BIG PHARMA calls them are the ones who decided to force psychiatry into the medical model when they felt Freudian psychoanalysis was waning and they had too much competition from therapists in psychology, sociology, etc. Thus, Dr. Robert Spitzer and Dr. Allen Francis plotted to come up with the DSM III and IV that allowed them to treat humans like rock and insect specimens based on invented stigmas with many typical human behaviors listed in clusters to create hundreds of bogus disorders. Dr. Paula Caplan, Psychologist, in THEY SAY YOU’RE CRAZY reveals how the white old boy network in power VOTED in these so called disorders without a shred of scientific evidence that she is protesting on this site now due to the massive harm this sham medical model with its degrading stigmas causes others.

          Anyway, it was because of the huge subjectivity and lack of scientific evidence that this new model of psychiatry attracted BIG PHARMA. The APA with its powerful associates in high positions were more than happy to sell out the profession and its patients to BIG PHARMA. When one sees the impact of the likes of “Dr” Joseph Biederman, famous or infamous psychiatrist at Harvard who almost single handedly created the ADHD and child bipolar fad frauds and his selling children out for millions with Johnson & Johnson by promising positive studies in advance to them for the efficacy of antipsychotics in toddlers no less, I think it is questionable as to who corrupted whom. Think of Johnson & Johnson’s previous stellar reputation used as a textbook case for MBA students for how it dealt with the poisoned Tylenol scare with a massive recall. And now they are deliberately poisoning children with lethal psych drugs and being charged huge fines for pushing off label use to children and other fraud.

          Again, I realize that you were not one of the mostly powerful males that made these decisions for psychiatry or made all the millions of dollars from them, but you like others were forced to carry them out as part of the profession. I can see where people can be unaware of the truth at one point and wake up to the truth at another point. All of us were brainwashed to believe all the marketing spin of the psychiatry/BIG PHARMA complex that Bob Whitaker explains in his books. Dr. David Healy on his blog does a good job of exposing this for psychiatric and other drugs.

          Most people did not find out the truth until they or close loved ones were threatened with harm, which was true in my case, but it took tons of research for me to find and know the unpalatable truth.

          So, I don’t agree that BIG PHARMA made the decision for psychiatry to focus soley on its prescribing ability. The opposite is true because the key leaders saw this as giving them their special medical doctor status doing only what they could provide. This worked well for psychiatry for quite a while though the opposite was true for clients. But, as one APA president said, when you dance with the devil, you don’t always get to call the tunes or steps. So, I agree that as BIG PHARMA made more billions with their dangerous drugs as a result of colluding with psychiatry and lavishing them with money and gifts at the top especially, they gained more power over the profession, elected officials and the public.

          From what you are saying and other sources, it seems that this is proving to be a disaster for psychiatry in that now all that is wanted is the cheapest level of pill pushers for med checks which is the ultimate in reductionism of psychiatry’s original intentions. I imagine those same key leaders who created this debacle will continue to do well at the top, but it appears that they and BIG PHARMA have greatly betrayed people like you in the day to day firing lines of your profession.

          That’s why it seems to me that psychiatrists like you and Dr. Stephen Balt posting here may want to consider your own unique paths as doctors rather than allowing the same old devils of the APA and BIG PHARMA to call the tunes when it is obvious there is no honor among these thieves. It seems to me that a total rejection of psychiatry’s pretense of a medical model should be considered while pursuing a real medical/scientific model of natural/alternative holistic health remedies that would focus on a healthy mind/body/spirit and not mainstream psychiatry’s outdated focus on individual body parts or pretense thereof since neurology handles the actual physical brain. General medicine is guilty of this too, but not as bad as psychiatry since they must deal with actual tests and proof of their conditions though they have their own spin for pushing too many tests, drugs and procedures. It seems the best of both eastern and western medicine would be to combine mind and body again as is obvious with common sense and practice holistic, natural medicine dealing with both.

          Though a sole practice may not be financially feasible, if this type of alternative, holistic medicine seems like something you would enjoy, perhaps teaming up with like minded people or serving as a consultant to others in work and other organizations might be possilble. If you check it out online, many people are becoming wellness coaches and are hired by various businesses, etc.

          Anyway, though I can’t pretend that some sordid history doesn’t exist, I don’t think the victims of the perpetrators including those professionals and patients who were deceived, harmed and misled should keep forcing themselves to believe that the bare emperors are wearing any clothes now or ever were. Like those fooled by the boy who cried wolf once too often, sometimes it is best to ignore those sounding false alarms that only benefit themselves to everyone else’s great detriment. I think psychiatrists like you should abandon mainstream psychiatry’s sinking ship and pursue your role as a doctor in a way that makes you happy without being forced to sell your own soul to the devil. You might want to check out alternative psychiatrists like Dr. Hyla Cass or other specialties that appeal to you.

          This post is to try to give some positive thoughts on how the system could be improved in a positive way and meet the needs of both providers and clients without doing harm.

    • Robertr,

      As I said below, it is all too easy to get somebody committed with lies for ulterior, evil motives due to power disparities and discrimination including those in the BIG PHARMA/PSYCHIATRY pathocracy.

      You sound like a drill sargeant. You also fail to acknowledge that many have horrible reactions to SSRI’s, benzodiazopenes and neuroleptcs handed out like candy for minor ailments like insomnia, stress, anxiety and others that can result in iatrogenic bizare behavior that Dr. Peter Breggin describes in his book, MEDICATION MADNESS that could get someone committed for that or even to save their life from the poisoning like neuroleptic syndrome, etc. Of course, instead of admitting the iatrogenic harm, psychiatry blames the victim and says they really had bipolar or some other fraud stigma. See Dr. David Healy’s latest post exposing how corrupt BIG PHARMA spin doctor Mitch Daniels now turned politician came up with the evil spin that all nasty drug effects hidden by BIG PHARMA and psychiatry would be blamed on the victim’s so called mental illness like the shrinking brains from Ritalin and neuroleptics or mania and suicide/homicide caused by SSRI’s.

      You serve your masters all too well!!

      You sound like a “mental health expert” and have the BIG PHARMA/PSYCHIATRY spin down to a science to blame your victims. Those harmed directly or indirectly sure know better!

      • In Oregon there are really not many people that are forced to take drugs, many people in fact want to take psychiatric medications. Most comments on this page are emotionally charged with lots of angry buzz words and accusations. Which is not really helpful if the intent is to begin to problem solve what can be done to change the mental health system.

        • “Psychiatric medications” are just drugs. They are not real medications, medications are for true diseases with a start and finish date. Legal drugs work no better or no worse than illegal ones. The problem here is that the Government has to foot the bill for the “psychiatric medications”. They are “medications” because those in power say they are medications. It’s just a huge con game. The system will break soon enough from the cost of the skyrocketing number of disabled persons.
          Who is psychiatry helping?
          Pharma Co wasn’t happy with the percentage of the population it already had as virtual slaves. Now that psychiatric judgment is expanding, people are objecting to the new DSM and perhaps the whole system will be brought into question.

        • Donna,

          I think some psychiatrists have been caught in the “system” just as much as we “patients.”

          They went to medical school to try to help people. I know some psychiatrists who dig in their heels and go along with the “medical model” because they were in school at the wrong time in history.

          Some are JUST NOW learning about how evil drugs and ECT are, but they are so deep into it that they risk their livelihood if they go against it.

          When I brought Mad in America to my psychiatrist in 2002, I naively thought he would accept it and change his ways. He poo-pooed the book, even though I was excited about it. I stopped seeing him before Anatomy came out, which is good because I would have dropped it on his head.

          Peter Breggin was way ahead of his time, and he was a voice in the wilderness for a long time.

          I am just glad that some psychiatrists are starting to see their way out of this mainstream delusion.

          Some day we will all look back on this time of transition (which I think it is) and wonder how it ever happened. You can’t turn the Titanic around overnight. But it can be sunk, and mainstream psychiatry is headed that direction.

          I only hope it happens in my lifetime because it has caused too much suffering already.

        • Alice, I think it’s like being a sexual abuse survivor. It feels like you’ve been ruined. Like Nijinsky was (1890-1950).

          As if you have been ruined, as if you’re not going to be good enough for whatever you believe being ruined robs you of. As if you’ve been broken and never will be fixed. As if it’s the end. This is of course never is the case, because you can turn this around and give from a place where there’s no limit to how much you can give, instead of being ruined. When people share thoughts and they are truly creative there’s not limit there. When you read this, if it means anything to you and you get something out of it, that doesn’t mean that there’s any loss to me. This is different than if one gives up their last piece of bread. Here there’s no loss. I won’t go hungry because you read this and got something from it. I think that’s what forgive means. for-give. To move on in such a way in life. And I think, when you do this, you tap into what created reality, and where home is for everyone beyond time and space. A place where all these things we think we need to fight against, and change, and do battle with don’t exist. A place where the belief in the need for defenses (to fight against loss) isn’t causing all the things we are trying to fight against. Because here there isn’t any loss. And so there’s no fear of it causing all of the loss. If you can turn things around this way there’s no loss for having been “duped” either.


        • Wow Alice. Thanks! I never heard of Coleman Barks, I looked him up:

          I wasn’t trying to be poetic, it’s what A Course in Miracles taught me…..So you can see there’s something Universal there

          And since that poem (the one Barks recites on the link) is about not picking up a book but picking up an instrument. I can do two more things
          1) Explain that your mind when it’s involved with music and something aural, that it has a better perspective in regards to time. People who have motoric injuries and need to learn to walk again or such are helped immensely with music that goes with the movement they are making. This also helps with speech. It helps with things mapped out in time.

          2) Feel completely free to share with anyone of your patients or anyone interested the sound of “Nijinsky” (me) healing of “schizophrenia.” Or rather music healing me:

          (not that there isn’t music in a book)

          • God’s the composer, I suppose. Those thoughts came into my mind and I put them into the computer. Then they were printed out so I could play them on a piano. Or maybe it’s something like water that composed it. Something that soothed me so I wouldn’t crumble and fragment into many different part, after knowing I could go to the music or get “mad.”

            Note of warning. Although water may have composed this music. Do not pour water into your computer thinking it will then be able to print out music.

          • This maze here of Comments! I think this should appear as a response now to Alice’s asking me whether “Nijinsky” composed the music….. And I tried responding once and it appeared underneath everything. So, here we go again:

            God’s the composer, I suppose. Those thoughts came into my mind, I played with them and I put them into the computer. Then they were printed out so
            I could play them on a piano. Or maybe it’s something like water that composed it. Something that soothed me, gave me something to be involved with so I wouldn’t crumble and fragment into many different part, after knowing I could go to the music or get “mad.”

            Note of warning. Although water may have composed this music. Do not pour water into your computer thinking it will then be able to print out music.

        • I just left a reply that says “your comment is waiting moderation.” After that another reply did post. I’m wondering why this happened. I do find this a bid unnerving trying to figure out such things and what I possibly might have done or said wrong. Were there to many links on that post?

      • Can I say something about ECT?
        I had 28 of them when I was 19 years old. I felt giddy and goofy and forgot why I was in the hospital.

        After about six months the giddy feeling went away and the depression and the fact that I was stuck in a State hospital hit me very hard.

        Because I was under 21, my parents had signed the consent. They were told that if I didn’t have ECT, there was “nothing else that could help”, and they would release me.

        Of course I was also given drugs and all the other “therapies” that were in vogue at the time.

        I later found out that having a grand mal seizure makes a person feel pretty good afterward, as though in an altered state. But it is temporary.

        I have known people, back then, and even now who believe that ECT does wonders, and they go back for more.

        They are willing to sacrifice their mental capabilities of logic and reason, and sometimes have been TALKED INTO it for the sake of the people around them.

        I knew an elderly woman who had been shocked over 200 times. She had the kind of anxiety that caused her to wring her hands and moan. Her husband would have her shocked six times and she would be “OK” for awhile.

        That was not “functioning” in my opinion, but as long as she could wash dishes, he liked her that way.

        I was sure I had lost IQ points, I just felt stupid and didn’t care about anything.

        Since I was part of a research program, they tested my IQ four times over a year, and it was back to where it was when I first came into the hospital.

        Of course, I didn’t need ECT. But they needed research subjects. They were testing unilateral ECT at the time. So only half my brain got zapped.

        Now they use low-pulse, lower voltage AC or some nonsense. It’s still like kicking your computer to make it work.

        Every doctor I asked, “would YOU ever have ECT?” said, “No, but I don’t NEED it!” That was the most arrogant, disgusting, dehumanizing thing anyone said to me.

        It took me two years (so much for the high IQ) to figure out the right answers to “do you hear voices?’ and “are you suicidal?”

        That was 40 years ago. I truly hope that Dr. Healy doesn’t think this should take the place of brain-disabling drugs.

    • Robertr,

      SSRIs and second generation neuroleptics were approved for use on the basis of short-term studies. Scientifically speaking, their long-term efficacy and safety were unknown, so any long-term use of these drugs on people is experimental from a scientific point of view. Yet, thousands of people have been forced to take these drugs on a long term basis through the use of inpatient and outpatient commitment orders.

      Large scale, forced medical experimentation on human beings. Sounds like a human rights abuse to me.

  7. Alice:

    One of the main reasons you end up being called “a prescriber” or “an LMP” is because many of the people writing the prescriptions are not doctors. In Oregon the trend, particularly in public mental health services, is to use nurse practitioners to replace doctors. From the perspective of administrators, a nurse practitioner costs about half of the salary of a psychiatrist. In fact the role is mainly about writing prescriptions. We don’t task psychiatrists, nurse practitioners and physician assistants with doing anything other than assessment and writing prescriptions. So the name used for that role is a product of seeing medication as the primary treatment for people with mental disorders.

    And I agree that having fun at work is a good thing.

  8. Alice the people I have served for 35 years don’t want to be called patient because of the pejorative label of mental patient. You say a patient is a patient is a patient. But imagine this- “There goes Alice the dental patient” vs “There goes Alice the mental patient.” Can’t you see the difference?

    • And the reason it is a pejorative to be labeled a mental patient was helped along by psychiatry creating millions of patients against their will.

      But by far the worst crime against humanity that psychiatry committed was to smear a whole group of people as having no agency, no responsibility, no humanity. Psychiatry lied to the world and lied to the loved ones of people and told the world that people labeled so, were nothing but talking brain diseases. Psychiatry did that. Not the people themselves. Not their actions however bizarre.

      Psychiatry’s belief system perpetuated the Hollywood stereotype too.

      That is, unless the good doctor is prepared to prove my brain is diseased… (and then they fell silent).

      Crickets. Chirping.

  9. If Alice Keyes wants to be called a doctor then she should behave like one. Prescribing medications that have as little scientific backing as saying that sugar, alcohol, street drugs, chocolate, caffeine etc. make you feel better; overlooking the damage; saying this has something to do with “having fun in life,” not seeing the addictions, disabling effects, loss of life all of this has… and then ranting about wanting to be called a doctor. Then practice healing: scientifically!

    • This comment is too much of a personal attack. I despise so called biological psychiatry, despise the decision many in the psychiatric profession make to coerce people, despise the quackery and pseudoscience, but I tried to be a little more restrained in relation to the author of this blog post herself. I talked about broader systemic issues and my moral views on the choices the personnel in the system make.

      I know it is tempting to unload in a less focused way in the discussion. I know it is an emotive topic. But what you’ve gone and done there is just jeopardizing the entire thing here, if you push too hard like that, they may shut down the whole comments section on the whole webzine.

      Alice Keys is rather new here. Psychiatrists write here. People who hate psychiatry write here. Both groups read here, both groups comment here. People in between read here and write here. Alice Keys has written some good stuff, and some poor stuff. Just the other day I saw a comment where she was praising Soteria. She’s participating. She’s trying to evolve along what must be a harrowing and confronting intellectual journey for any psychiatrist.

      I really wouldn’t be writing this comment if your comment Nijinsky had just been just 20% milder, but I hope you won’t hold it against me if I point out that I read your comment thought ‘wow’, danger zone, you’re pushing too hard there.

      • That’s your choice to think my comment is a personal attack. However, I’m just pointing out facts in relationship to the term “doctor” and healing. And I’m not going to be phased to look at what’s truly going on in another manner, whether you see that as a personal attack or not. There’s nothing “mild” about overlooking the truth, in fact that’s quite harsh!

        • I just feel there are ways of strongly, very strongly speaking about things in broader terms than making it laser focused on Alice Keys herself.

          I don’t think that the writers should have carte blanche to say anything they like without facing the potential gauntlet of disapproving comments if some readers disapprove of the article.

          I just think I’ve read hundreds of comments on here in recent days and yours is the harshest couple of comments, inc. the one below…

          Bob Whitaker had to take time out of his busy schedule preparing his presentation for Philadelphia to write this piece warning against personal attacks…

          Just in the last couple of weeks, and I’d hate to think that the comments section on here might get another smackdown in the wood shed. I’d just say, there are ways of saying psychiatry isn’t real medicine without ripping particular psychiatrists to shreds. Especially ones who are making an earnest effort to bridge the gap.

          Look, there is a potential ally in everyone. You talk to them in a few years they might believe completely different things about the key moral issues of the subject.

    • A few quotes:

      “When you feel overwhelmed, out of personal resources and don’t know what to do, you want to talk to someone who has ideas about what to do next.”

      Were you ever aware, in all your happiness to be around people in a locked ward, that they didn’t have this right anymore?

      And no, I’m not looking for someone acting happy about their job, as an excuse to be put on something I don’t need.

      And “Second. The simple statement that I have a medical degree and professional title triggers angry reactions from some folks. For a few, this is not an innocuous reaction.” I’m not surprised at this lack of understanding, even when it’s someone who went to school till they were 31. It’s not about the medical degree whatsoever (no matter how happy you are about it, how hard you worked or anything else which is supposed to correlate with jealousy, resentments…whatever). It’s about what you do with your medical degree, what you practice; and that it completely doesn’t add up medically. And since “medically” doesn’t meant much anymore: scientifically in regards to healing…

      Focusing on other people’s supposed unjust or reactions and saying you are then aware of icebergs… this is quite a fantasy about the Titanic I imagine.

      Other people are more interested in reality.

      • Again, I don’t think that’s quite called for, too personal.

        We can argue broadly and non-specifically about whether an M.D is of any help with anything other than a biological determinist response to human distress, but really, I say tone it down, play the man/woman and not the ball.

        can we restrain ourselves in the comments here just 20% take it down a notch.

        • Again, I don’t see this as a personal attack, I’m simply pointing out gross inconsistencies. Those can’t be “toned” down; they are that severe. And I’m not going to argue about this anymore, or respond to a whole series of posts that aren’t about the material anymore, but about personal interpretation on how someone should express themselves.

      • After being trained as a chaplain in a huge psychiatric hospital in New Orleans, after working as a chaplain in a large medical hospital, and now working as a peer worker in a state hospital; I put all doctors on alert and not just psychiatrists. All too many doctors of all specialties act like they are God Almighty and that they are the experts about our lives. I give no respect to anyone, just because they have the letters M.D. behind their names. Each and every doctor of every specialty must prove to me that they are worthy of taking care of my precious life. Those who are honest, transparent, and genuine receive the title doctor from me, and no others. I chose to call Alice Doctor because she is willing to admit that she doesn’t know it all and is willing to struggle alongside the rest of us to find some answers to a horrible situation.

  10. When you compare being the patient at the dentist’s with being referred to as a patient by psychiatry, you’re comparing apples to oranges. Where’s the disease? Where’s the body part that doesn’t function properly in your “patients”? As mentioned in my comment to Rossa above, I like the Open Dialogue approach that sees the “illness” as located in interpersonal relationships, not in individuals. Your “patients” are relationships, not people. People who work in the field of helping others in emotional distress are, at best, “doctors” in a metaphorical sense. A medical degree matters in this field about as much as it would matter to a person in emotional distress asking for help at the crisis center where I work that I’m a classical dressage instructor, too.

    • I agree. All the practice suturing and all the nights spent head buried deep in cardiology textbooks are not going to help you one iota tell you why human beings under stress have breakdowns and sometimes escape into delusion and unwanted thoughts in the face of massive overwhelm.

      One use of a medical education I could think of off hand is to know the fatal dose of drugs so that when you order the nurses to carry out another brutal take down and forced injection you know the approximate weight of the person and not to overdose and kill them, and even then sometimes they get it wrong and kill people. But hey! what’s malpractice insurance for?

      A medical education allows you to control behavior with drugs, like a thug, and know more than a layperson about what precisely those drugs are doing to the brain you never proved disease in in the first place.

      Whereas the common date rapist simply slips a roofie into his victim’s drink and doesn’t need to know the half life of the substance and what precisely is happening in the neurochemistry of the drug action etc. The principle is the same…

      1. Person labeled mental patient is not doing what the thug wants them to do, so the thug will order nurses to do their dirty work for them and drug them.

      2. Woman at the bar is not consenting to have sex with the date rapist so the thug will drug them.

      If the thug labels the woman’s refusal of consent a ‘symptom of a brain disease’ that is not going to stand up in court as an excuse for slipping a roofie into her drink.

      But a psychiatrist can stand up in court and label refusal and noncompliance a ‘symptom of a brain disease’ and the judge will rubber stamp some more thuggish attacks against the person labeled brain diseased.

      Labeling them brain diseased, drugging them, and filling their minds full of lies and hope destroying learned helplessness, is a crime against the distressed person’s humanity so grave and dire that very few can even grasp the gravity of what is occurring in society with psychiatry meddling in so many lives.

      Society holds the date rapist in contempt, for his brutal and callous disregard for the human rights of the woman he drugs.

      Society gives Psychiatrists a Nobel Prize for the lobotomy. And life tenure for coming up with new ways to label infants Bipolar.

      • I think that the factor of people not being convenient figures large in involuntary commitments. One does not have to commit a crime or have an illness to have one’s liberty taken away. Extreme and bizarre, or even just odd and eccentric behavior is THAT disconcerting to others?? Where is the crime? I have seen so many people who could carry out the functions of their own lives in their own ways be committed because they were loud and their families or neighbors could not understand why. I am not kidding. This was the major reason for more commitments than I can count. First of all, it is inconvenient, as I said. But second, people jump from “I don’t understand” to “I am afraid” to “You are a danger to me” without any logic necessary. And last, involuntary commitment and forced treatment are the ultimate in blaming the most sensitive person in a family or social network when things are going wrong. When I can locate the problem in YOU, I do not have to look at ME.

  11. When I got out of high school, I set my sights on studying forestry. I grew up in the Texas Hill Country, and loved the outdoors – fishing, camping, all of it.

    I attended the largest forestry school in the world, in Nacogdoches, Texas – Stephen F. Austin State. There were guys there who were better at it than I was, much better.

    So I started considering law enforcement. In my sophomore year, I was the sole security guard for a major hospital – working the grave yard shift, and I got to know each of the local police officers who came into the place, along with the paramedics… I thought this would be a great career.

    As fate would have it, many people came into my life, and I went on to pursue a career working with people with disabilities….

    Now that I’m in my mid-fifties, I often wonder what it would have been like to have been a police officer… As my wife can attest, I’m still fascinated by what these guys do every day.

    The reason I bring this up, is because as I read the comments on this post, it seems like something an office must encounter every day… At four-way intersections across the country.

    Hearing what happened.
    From everyone involved.

    The one who swears someone “ran the light.”
    Another who “didn’t notice the light had changed.”
    Somone who had a baby in the back seat, and “turned around to see why she was crying.”
    A young kid on his way to “his first date.”
    A three-time drunk driver.
    The young professional who was on his way to “close a big sale.”
    The recently divorced woman with three children, who was in a huge “custody battle with her spouse.”

    And then there must be all the witnesses…
    The one who saw “the man driving recklessly.”
    The one who “heard the tires squeal.”
    Another who “saw the car plow into the side of the SUV.”
    The one who swore “he wasn’t paying attention.”

    And of course, the stories after the wreck, in hospital rooms with family members:

    You were doing so well.. You “hadn’t had a drink in two years.”
    Why did you let me take the car… “You knew I was to upset to drive.”
    “You should have known better.”
    I “had no idea the brakes were low.”
    “I was changing the station on the radio.”
    “I didn’t see her coming.”
    “Why didn’t you slow down?”
    “It’s your fault…. you should have been paying attention.”
    “I didn’t mean to hurt anyone.”
    “This all wasn’t supposed to happen, I just wanted to see my grandmother in the nursing home.”
    “I don’t know if I can ever forgive them.”
    “I don’t know if I can ever forgive myself.”

    I often wonder what my life had been like, had I heard all the stories.

    Maybe I wasn’t meant to be a police officer.
    There are a lot of stories I’ve heard along the way.
    “Four-ways” of a different sort.

    I don’t know what the answers are anymore.
    I truly don’t.


  12. I’m really starting to find these remarks — I’m not reading anymore — I’ve found abundant here and in other blogs, as if it’s anyone’s task all of a sudden to give therapy to the therapist (tone it down, make it more mild) , otherwise they see it as a personal attack; this is like people suggesting that Kandinsky should soften the lines in his paintings, that Handel should have written music that was a little less Euphoric, that Beethoven should have been more “nice”….etc.
    And this really only separates you from communicating anything on all sides! There is no gain or loss with inhibiting people’s responses; only people fragmented into incoherent statements based on gain and loss and how it will look according to gain and loss. And all there is is loss, because expression is creative; you inhibit it and all you get is loss, wagering with what you think you didn’t loose, since you believe in loss.
    And I’m not talking about any “justice.” I’m simply talking about being human and expressing yourself. In the end I feel really sorry for psychiatrists, and their inability to actually relate to what heals. Those ARE the broken souls, not the people they are treating. Any act of compassion makes a difference in such areas. And I don’t add up everything they’ve done as if it’s my personal task to add it up and expose it as evil. It means nothing because it doesn’t add up. There’s nothing there. As little as someone thinking they need to start “educating” me on how I should respond, as if the life of the whole Universe depends on this one blog.
    And it’s quite interesting for Mr. Whitaker to start saying this or that, when what I read it was because he was threatened by someone legally that was a psychiatrist. Because someone posted things that might cause legal trouble, because of what they exposed. This is something different than a whole new trend about personal attacks.

    I also think that Mr. Whitaker whould do himself a favor to actually look at more than just “psychiatric” medications as something un-medical and un-healing that occurs in medicine. What I’ve heard is that he’s quite apologetic about vaccines and other things that ALSO clearly and scientifically correlate with harm, causing mental illness and an epidemic.

  13. Well that was a million times a better piece of writing in response to the having fun at work in a locked psych ward than Alice Keys could present to us evidently.

    “door was double locked- keeping on the outside of the unit at least some of what the kid needed a break from.”

    I can only point out that in a perfectly coercive world we could give smokers a “break” from the cigarettes behind a locked door, and food addicts a break from Burger King behind locked doors. I find it offensive that only a specific subset of unwanted thoughts and behaviors are targeted for forced psychiatry while everyone else gets the liberty to make mistakes. Why pick on us?

    In a free society locking up people who have not committed a crime against others or property simply cannot be justified, no matter what small or large core of non-criminals you’d love to ‘help’ by coercing you’d like to focus on.

    In my experience, people who employ coercion in their do-gooding, tend to remember with rose colored glasses the ones they coerced who wound up ‘thankful’ and they don’t give a rip about the ones they traumatized for life. Therefore, why coerce in the first place? if you’re doing more harm than good, wrecking one group of detainees’ lives in order to craft a coterie of coerced indoctrinated admirers, why bother coercing anybody? wouldn’t it be better to let people alone? It’s the arrogance and hubris of it all that disgusts me. The arrogance that forced psychiatry is the solution to a crisis, it’s no solution, it’s like injecting cancer cells into the crisis.

    “I focused on protection from intruders,”

    What’s the closest an intruder can get to someone? break into their house? No. The closest, most intrusive intruder I know of in existence, is somebody who will assault you on the molecular level, with forced drugging.

    You sound okay. I’ll give you that. But you were part of a profession where a lot of us feel safer if you’re on strike. Maybe I’ll re-read what you wrote and think on it.

  14. Saying what one has to say, is important. This thread was an emotional read—as is the post by Dr. Keyes; thank you doctor.

    Two things, thank you anonymous for pointing out that one’s manner of delivery matters, and for your courage to call it like you see it, specifically for saying Nijinsky’s comment seemed to be a ‘personal attack’ and telling him/her it was inappropriate.

    Thank you Marian for bringing up the value of Open Dialogue the underlying premise of Open Dialogue is that is only in relationship with one another that we experience distress, crisis and psychosis and that only in relationship, can we promote healing.

    This means empathy and positive regard for others is really IMPORTANT all of the time for all of us, regardless of our own personal experiences. It is our own personal experiences which at times put each of us at risk of our perceptions becoming a justification for showing others no empathy, compassion or respect…If this has caused any of us grave harm, why would we do it to someone else?

  15. I’m still quite bewildered…. what this whole article about having fun at work; contrasted with people that have said certain things, …. although we don’t have anything but a condensed version of what they said….And then call me Doctor.

    From what I can gather, because you’ve said you were having fun in a locked ward with your patients, others are shocked, have communicated this, and according to you say that’s you’re like Hitler.
    No further statement about what goes on in these locked wards, what entails fun, or any mention of the dire straits that all of these people in a locked ward go through.
    I have no problem understanding that “oh, I had fun with the people in that concentration camp, while working there as a guard.” that this would rattle a few bars. And I don’t find the comparison to a concentration camp out of place or inappropriate. If nothing else, what goes on in a locked ward is way beyond anything that can be referred to as having fun or not, whether the patients there are voluntary or not.

    “I am, you see, a member of the group of humans called psychiatrists. When the entire group is blasted, it hits me too.”

    This is your interpretation of what others have said, others who haven’t been invited to explain their side of their statements here, at all.

    I don’t see anyone really “blasting” psychiatrists, just allusions by you to things others have said, which is already basically hearsay and quite inappropriate. Certainly, since these people aren’t here to defend themselves, given that what they said could be completely taken out of context, and they might read references to it here. Perhaps these allusions taken out of context can be seen as “blasting” as well, given the context of “psychiatric treatment and diagnosis.” And I really have nothing to do with this, except I see that I’m supposed to take on a a view point of what these people have said that is very much comparable to a sort of diagnosis, without their input, whatsoever!

    For the rest, people are trying to point out true concerns. Marion Goldstein, for example, simply pointed out the difference between what a Dentist does and a psychiatrist. To make a reference to her implying that she has no need for doctors, is inappropriate.. I’m also sure there are doctors who don’t demand that they be called doctors.

    I truly don’t really know what you are going on about. I’m not interested in untangling these little snippets you have shared of the statements of others. If you were trying to defend what you do, that certainly doesn’t help one bit…

  16. This is a difficult discussion for me, and I hope I don’t regret posting such a personal story here. I’m embarrassed that I’ve been psych-hospitalized a bunch of times over the past 23-odd years. While a few of them involved an involuntary hold, even for most of those I was a willing participant in getting myself admitted. Some of my stays I later ambivalently regretted initiating. So why do I keep doing it?

    I struggle with dysregulation in my daily life. The usual tools for grounding and calming (and I’ve been introduced to lots of them) seem to paradoxically backfire for me, so I’m mostly stuck using hypervigilance, distraction, and increasing avoidance. Those can help me cope, but they don’t help me thrive. I’m grateful that I have a decent job, decent income. But before I ever saw a psychiatrist at age 28, I was having some ongoing difficulties that clearly weren’t getting better on their own (or with my own best efforts).

    Being overwhelmed is painful, but what’s worse is not having any safe place to be when I’m overwhelmed. Being acutely suicidal can be very stressful state. I was (sometimes) grateful when I was in the hospital, because suicide was then that much harder to actually do, and I couldn’t easily leave the hospital on a whim. That it meant I didn’t need to think so much about suicide right then. I could maybe take a break for a few days from dwelling on imminent suicide. I think it would sometimes help break the metaphorical “fever”.

    Actually, locked hospitalization oftentimes wasn’t much of a “safe place to be when I’m overwhelmed”. With little privacy, and people ready to label my difficulties in suppressing my dysregulation as “doing it to get attention” or “being melodramatic”, etc., I sometimes struggled to raise my internal walls that much higher, blocking out much sense of mutual connection, to avoid shame. I don’t think that constantly trying to suppress or hide the visible signs of my dysregulation (via an increasingly avoidant life, maintaining hypervigilance, etc) is the way to learn how to master self-regulation better. But if I let others see (much degree at all of) my dysregulation, I get shamed for it.

    I have this “crazy” idea in my head, that if I could be permitted to try moving back toward the states and movements that tend to trigger the paradoxical here-and-now dysregulation, but with lots of support and help with safety in place (almost like physical therapy? or “a safe place to fail”?), I might slowly learn how to better master the dysregulation and not have to just be avoidant all the time. But the process wouldn’t be pretty. I’ve already shown I can’t consistently keep myself calm (or safe) when the dysregulation is too high. It gets hard, and crushing, trying to stay calm enough when my internal system hasn’t had much natural sense of calm for years. But does that mean that I actually want a locked hospitalization and even a padded room or area, which many of the others here would (very understandably) find abhorrent and traumatizing? Of course, the whole notion of using a hospitalization to actually do significant real healing work is pretty lost these days anyway. My whole “crazy” idea is highly impractical for a number of reasons.

    I’m angry that the years of psych meds may have contributed to the chronicity of my situation. I’m upset that all the years of psychologists, psychiatrists, and hospitals haven’t helped much, and have often hurt. But I’ve done it to myself. I can’t blame anyone else, for putting me in these situations, or for my inability to get better. I have repeatedly failed at learning better coping techniques (whether on my own, in office settings, in day hospitalization, in inpatient hospitalization). I haven’t succeeded at leaving the mental health professionals behind because, for all their faults, I have nothing better. There is no one else equipped in any way (for good or bad) to deal with me when my dysregulation gets worse.

    I write all this personal stuff because I know I can’t be the only one. But I feel almost ashamed of admitting here that I sometimes almost want a place that’s locked, that will help keep me safe even when I’m having trouble keeping myself safe, and help keep me from impulsively doing things that could jeopardize my longer-term quality of life further. (Should people who readily admit fear of the consequences of their potential actions have some means available to help them with limiting those risky actions for the time being? What should that look like?) It would probably differ in considerable ways from most current psychiatric hospitals. Whether the ways it would differ matter much to other readers of this site, or whether its similarities constitute the most egregious violations, I can’t say. But just being out there coping on my own, without any place to seek even a badly broken refuge, feels scary too.

    • Philroy,

      Thanks for sharing your journey with us.
      I would like to say, first of all, that you are an equal – to every person on this site – professionals and non-professionals alike. An equal.

      Secondly, I hope you never give up hope.
      Not ever.
      Hope is what sustains any of us.
      We are not so very different – all of us have very similar needs – for shelter, nutrition; but also for community, love, warmth, understanding, apppreciation, respect. I hope you always remember that you are worth a great deal – more than you will ever know – We all are… each of us!

      This is a list of treatment centers that I’ve found along the way (other readers may know of more, if so, please comment) –

      If you spend time on the site, you may find some links that are helpful. I hope so. It’s the only reason I put it together, to show people where to start, in hopes that they might finds some tools that help.

      My best,


        • Philroy,

          This is a poem I wrote a while back…
          I send it to you tonight –

          Heavenly Kiss


          With magnificent pattern

          Brilliant craftsmanship

          Crystal perfection

          With worth that transcends all understanding

          You were released from the heavens

          By an artist

          In a flurry you descend

          Through the clouds

          Swayed with enormous force

          You spiral across the sky

          Born to gleam

          With genius in your blueprint

          A snowflake

          Sent to impact the earth

          To crest a mountain

          For all to observe

          Or, to land softly on the cheek

          Of one who sleeps

          And awaken them to the wonders

          Of the source of your being…

          With a heavenly kiss

          – Duane Sherry

    • I don’t really know so consciously what you mean by dysregulation; but, even in the asylum, aren’t you around people that are all going through something? Perhaps, you’ll find that there are people that you can make yourself vulnerable too. Outside the asylum, if not the other way. Everyone has gone through stuff, I think. Whether they are in the asylum or not. There’s absolutely nothing to feel ashamed of or guilty about. Whatever you’ve been through or what decisions you made looking for healing.
      There are many books. I do a book which has a sort of cognitive behavioral exercises for each day of the year, it’s called A Course in Miracles. That works for me. That doesn’t mean that that would work for you. Some people really don’t like A Course in Miracles. I’m sure there’s got to be something there for you. I don’t believe anyone is ever really abandoned, not that there’s anything wrong with feeling abandoned. Maybe you’re letting go of something? Music. Reading and writing books. Painting. All these things help me. I do think it’s possible to heal. I’m just trying to say something. Bless you for sharing your story…

    • Thanks for your post. It is eloquent. You are correct; psych hospitals are often not the safest places to be. It’s a paradox. Often, the staff responses and the socalled treatment are as traumatizing as the original event or experience that initiated the emotionsl and mental anguish in the first place. thanks again for sharing.

  17. Ilove your blog so far. I found it at aek’s blog, another one I really like. I always call my health care providers (yes, I go to a clinic, too) “Doctor.” Actually, there, they’re PCPs or primary care physicians. Or Psychiatrists or what ever they are as applicable. I am called by my first name. I don’t mind it. I once met another patient of our common psychiatrist, who had since left and we talked about her. She referred to her by her first name, which was actually a beautiful name. I said “You don’t CALL her that, do you?” She said no, but she liked her name. This doc was pretty authoritarian, and I often wondered what would happen if I called her by her first name. I really liked her, anyway, though. What I do for a living garners many appellations that are not complimentary… sharks, shyster, sleaze… what have you. I’m a lawyer. I am called “Ms.” in Court, or Counselor, which is fine. However, when I first meet my clients, I do what you do – I point out that they can use my first name, and ask what I should call them. I am comfortable with first names. I find male clients are slower to use my first name, however, even if I use theirs. Interesting. I look forward to reading more about your journey and in general.

  18. it was a great relief to find such passionate responses against the pseudo science of psychiatry. Here in Canada most seem to accept whatever lies they hear and view psychiatrists as Gods. The one wish I have for all of humanity is to see the collapse of the psychiatric empire. I would love to see them charged with criminal offenses, locked up, exposed, humiliated and destroyed. Their profession serves no valid purpose. They are all Nazis. Just as Hitler fell, so should psychiatry. All we need are psychologists with a humanistic approach and naturopaths. There is not a single condition that can not be cured without toxic drugs. There is not a person out there as dangerous as a psychiatrist. The term mental illness needs to be abolished. Labelling normal reactions to trauma as an illness is proof of a sociopath. Psychiatrists are the sick ones. Save your cliches and ignorant attacks. Anyone who defends psychiatry and demonizes its victims like robert are not worth listening to. Some minds are too judgmental and small to question what they hear. When good people do nothing and believe the lies, evil (psychiatry) flourishes. And that is a great tragedy.

    • Greeney,

      Once a boy and his father were in a German concentration camp. One day, a prison guard had been very cruel and after a trying ordeal, the boy and his father were alone again. The boy started talking about all the cruel and abusive things he would like to do to that nasty prison guard. He became quite heated up and excited about getting even for all the misery he and his father had endured from this guard. After he had gone on for a while about various tortures he would like to inflict on the guard, he noticed his father was looking at him sadly.

      He said, “So, you’ve become what you hate and are just like that cruel guard?”

      The Buddha said, “When you seek revenge, dig two graves.”

      Th Buddha said, “When you are filled with hatred and revenge, it is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.”

      We are all guilty of this, but if we want psychiatry to stop what we consider hate speech in the form of stigmas and eugenics, do you think using hate speech against them makes us look credible?

      I am guilty too of letting my own anger over past abuses get the best of me at times, but I know this is like acid to our minds and souls and just destroys us over time.

      And here is one of the worst thoughts, “While you’re angry and hating another person, they’re out dancing.”

      (The last one is really shows this to be self defeating behavior).

      The truth is living well is the best “revenge” so it is critical that we refuse to allow ourselves to be destroyed by hate and vengeful thoughts because they just destroy us in the end and play right into the hands or our perceived enemies.

  19. Philroy, I just now read your earnest and evocative post. When I posted last, it was in response to much earlier posts. I am very sorry that you had to endure such an ordeal. You placed your faith in the system because you were misled by society to believe some benefit might exist in the route you took. I truly believe that a humanistic psychologist specializing in psychotherapy, but one in private practice who is not connected to other health care people, hospitals, clinics or anything else. In fact, one with a 1970s background of anti establishment thinking would be a good choice. Perhaps Behavior Modification would have been precisely what you were seeking. What you describe does not require any meds, but then, nothing – nothing justifies the use of psychiatric drugs. You did not need to have any contact with psychiatrists, hospitals, or drugs. Just a solid psychologist, psychotherapy and behavior modification. Thank you for being open. I truly wish you the very best. My regards, Greeney

  20. Since there are all these archaic references to Hitler in this thread, on both sides of the fence as long as he’s seen as denoting something evil or meant to denote something evil. What does this have to do with anything?

    Do you know that Hitler was so abused as a child that he was in a coma for three days, after being beaten by I think his step father? Do you know that he lost such respect for himself and what it is to be human that he couldn’t draw the human form, and consequently wasn’t let into art school because of this? It would have been quite different if he was seen as needing help, and that the therapy of art he would have gotten at art school was vital for him.

    When he became a politician he also was quite abused by psychiatry, in that he was pumped up to the max with meth-amphetamines called “happy pills” or something.

    There’s also an incredible amount of collusion with both English and American big business and Nazi Germany. There’s more than a bit of evidence that both these powers supported Hitler at first, because they thought that he would de-stabilize Germany. According to this theory, they were scared that if Germany had an alliance with Russia that they would become too powerful. I’m just mentioning this because it’s not such a black and white story of the evil Nazi, anymore. I could go on about what happened to German scientists after WW2.

    And I’m not condoning the holocaust or racism mentioning these things.

    To continue this vicious cycle using Hitler as a means to categorize (or in this case allegedly categorize) others or be insulted, is this really helpful?

    Hitler perhaps needed help just like everyone else. Is this really separate from what any human needs?

    • The history of Hitler and the Nazi’s is very complex with many tentacles and interwoven entities. As for psychiatry’s eugenics agenda and people’s incredulousness to it, do you think, first off, they are going to come out and say it? Of course not, that does not mean it is not going on. Secondly, what better people to essentially rid from the gene pool through brain damage and sexual dysfunction than those with broken brains (as psychiatry sees it)? I cannot think of much better candidates. Eugenics is mostly an elite philosophy emanating from families at the top like the Rockefellers who have those under them, psychiatrists and others, carry it out. A more open eugenics operation is Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood was started by a blatant racist who spoke at KKK rallies and that is why you see them in predominately black neighborhoods. Before it was taboo many prominent people were noted eugenists (as noted on the Wikipedia page) and believed, and still do believe, that this is a scientific endeavor to better humanity (sound familiar). Eugenics is all around us and psychiatrists are just the foot soldiers of the elite that believe in it.

    • People are not using Hitler when they protest against dangerous eugenics theories that were promoted by psychiatry long before Hitler and long after to the present. Germany’s Holocaust is just one of many horrible examples of what these horric unproven, unscientific theories that really cover up prejudice, racism, sexism, homophobia and the targeting of vulnerable groups to destroy in general.

      I don’t bring this up to shame Dr. Keys or to accuse her of doing this personally, but to show her that psychiatry does use lies to brainwash everyone that those they stigmatize as mentally ill have a brain disease due to their faulty genes. There is not one shred of evidence that ANY DSM stigmas is caused by any brain chemical imbalances or faulty genes since any so called studies claiming to prove this were proven fraudulent. Dr. Jay Joseph’s books, THE MISSING GENE and THe GENE ILLUSION, demonstrate that the century long search for such genes is futile since the emotional distress or trauma psychiatry stigmatizes is caused by one’s environment. He also exposes that a right wing agenda uses such eugenics to justify maintaining their grossly unjust status quo of insane power grabs and robbery of the majority of the nation’s wealth and productivity while doing all in their power to make all nations slave nations under a small number of the entrenched power elite who have hijacked our democracy and human rights.

      • Exactly Donna, it is all connected. The banking fraud, the endless wars, the police state, and the mass drugging of the US populace. I think we must understand this agenda of total takeover if we are going to effectively combat the direction psychiatry is going. Everyday i am becoming more terrified. This is no joke. It boggles my mind how people do not see this.

  21. When reading some of the comments, one gets sometimes the impression that people end up in the mental health system for no good reason at all: that nasty psychiatrists are lurching around corners and grabbing people at whim, locking them up at random, medicating them and putting them in restraints etc. Now, I am no fan of modern psychiatry either but there was a good reason why my friend’s daughter ended in the system in the first place: she thought she was an angel and was going to jump off a bridge. My own son thought that the whole police force was after him and had bugged our house etc. The problem in my friend’s case as well as mine was that once you had asked psychiatry’s help they took over in a big way and neither “the patient” nor their nearest and dearest had any say anymore. May be something needs to be done in that respect. Also, the lack of alternative places to go to is a real problem and the absolute lack of psychological and emotional support in hospital- at least where I live. Trust me, I will not ask for psychiatry’s help again- not as things stand at the moment. People get trapped in the system: “patients”, their carers and even well-meaning and enlightened psychiatrists and nursing-staff: yes, I met a few.

    • Alix, you haven’t heard stories of people being locked up at whim almost? Someone in Australia who went to an emergency room because he had a head ache after having tried marijuana for the first time ends up being listed as a dangerous psychotic (which was first a writing error, if I remember correctly). Then after being administered medications he’s allergic to, is further “diagnosed” because of the medications. And he’s been in the asylum for 12 years! Can’t get out. They won’t admit their mistake or what the medications do (and facilitate calling him a danger to himself to prevent him getting out and people finding out) Another girl had to have vaccines in order to go to school (I think she was home schooled before this), had a bad reaction to the vaccines, was put on psychiatric medications which made her worse, and when she was bing weened off of these medications with doctor’s advice, the Child Protection Agency came and removed the girl from her mother and put her in an asylum, (after a big public outcry the mother did get her daughter back). Two mothers had their children made ward of the state and assigned a guardian because they acted too distressed in a distressing situation at ER. And this was just natural distress to a physical condition. Both girls are forced on “medications” that they didn’t need, weren’t helping them and are mind altering and damaging. These are stories I hear all the time.

      And I’m sorry but, the way that psychiatry tries to fit people into “accepted” forms of thinking; the very thought that one would be an angel (which perhaps we all are) is not something they are helping society to integrate. In fact, I have no difficulty seeing that maybe this was your friend’s daughter’s way of getting into a place where there is no understanding for such thoughts. That’s just a thought mind you. I’m just trying to understand it. OR maybe she was expressing how confused such a thought becomes. I can’t say that I don’t think that psychiatry is collusion with creating such a confusing environment as to what an angel is. Anyone who hears voices (something spiritualists encourage) or sees or hears things that “don’t exist,” (like music, anything any angelic muse might be tending to)…these are all labeled as symptoms of diseases. I truly empathize with your friend’s daughter and hope she has acquired some kind of understanding of what an angel is beyond what you mentioned! A person who is emotionally distressed, hasn’t gotten the kind of cognitive help or empathy they might need, could easily say things that sound disturbing in an attempt to get the attention they were missing; and not really mean any of it but just felt like they had to act disturbed. And truly and certainly with there were places for them to go that encouraged an understanding of what was going on rather than an oppression of it as being meaningless…

      • Sorry, I wrote “In fact, I have no difficulty seeing that maybe this was your friend’s daughter’s way of getting into a place where there is no understanding for such thoughts.” This wasn’t clear. I meant that perhaps there was a sort of devil’s advocate going on here. In the asylum she might have met others like herself and learned to understand the lack of understanding. I don’t know if this makes any more sense. Sorry

        • I have heard about “a bad reaction to medication” because it is exactly why my son went psychotic and you are right when you say that the psychiatrists didn’t seem to recognise such a thing. They didn’t believe me when I told them that the medication was to blame. They thought they knew better. I didn’t know at the time that asking for help would get my son sucked into the system and that it would be very difficult to get him free again. I even thought about kidnapping him and whisking him out of the country.

          • OUCH! If I’m correct, you only have to go outside of state boundaries to avoid forced treatment. You don’t have to completely leave the country. I’ve asked somebody about this, and will let you know if this isn’t the case.

    • The real problem is the billions psychiatry made for BIG PHARMA that was used to lobby our so called elected officials who are obviously being bought out by such huge corporations and certainly no longer represent the people who elect them. George W. Bush and his father had close ties to Eli Lilly, a huge psych drug company, which is why Bush pushed for more “mental health” bogus screening from cradle to grave and pushed for BIG PHARMA’s toxic drugs to be pushed on everyone. He created the bogus FREEDOM COMMISSION ON MENTAL HEALTH to promote more psychiatric labels and forced drugging under forced treatment advocate Sally Satel.

  22. How about “partner in care?” With all due respect for the hard work and wisdom that may be behind the title (or not) attached to the caregiver’s name? At its heart, these relationships are about respect, trust and, hopefully, mutual empowerment and personal responsibility. There is a Tibetan saying, “Everything rests on the tip of intention.” Perhaps that could be our guide through these murky waters?

  23. Appears there are a lot of personal attacks going on…who’s monitoring this threat & enforcing the new comment policy anywise?…didn’t they assign a psychiatrist “because they are doctors after all” to monitor the conversation; rule from on-high what is sane & acceptable discourse, and what is obviously deranged mentally ill rambling……

    never mind…the comment policy must only apply when “certain” people are offended or when someone threatens to call their lawyer……carry on…

    As many can clearly see, mental health issues/topics tend to be deeply personal – even “Doctors” sitting on their mighty “I’m the Dr” perch react defensively & with personal vigor when their ordained authority comes under informed scrutiny.

    The hard reality is that there will be no lasting or formative enlightened change going forward without society and patients first holding psychiatry (including their practitioners) accountable for the damage they have caused and their ongoing indefensible actions…only then, maybe…& that’s just a simple maybe, the conversation can begin to move forward..

    Whitaker unfortunately in this case does have it wrong….you don’t invite the foxes (establishment psychiatry) into the hen house (reform movement); and reasonably expect they are going to come to some form positive compromise with those they have deceived & damaged….you just end up with lots of further havoc, feathers flying & more dead poultry..

  24. The reaction the comment section has had regarding the commenter “Rossa Forbes” is exactly why many parents who have been harmed by psychiatry by watching their children suffer at the hands of incompetence, drugs that don’t work or help at all, been witness to their kids being forcibly treated—remain silent in forums like these. What else would people like parents to DO when their child has an existential crisis of the mind, soul and spirit? sit back and not do anything? people ASSUME parents are all savvy and know “how psychiatry works” and that psychiatry is based on medications for care only. Do the negative commenters ripping Rossa Forbe apart understand that one cannot possibly learn how the psychiatric system works until entering it? Has anyone bothered to read Rossa Forbes’ blog? She is hardly the mother to attack here, in fact you can LEARN from her.

    I find it ironic that once again, people come out of the woodwork to attack doctors AND parents.

      • I find it ludicrous that you use the word ‘testify’, as though people being accused of being dangerousness are in a court of law with due process rights and access to an attorney.

        Wrong. This ‘testimony’ is done behind closed doors to a psychiatrist in the first instance.

        • Well, “Anonymous” it IS “testify”! sadly! In WA state they have “mental health court” and they will and DO use family members, case managers, friends and neighbors to testify UNDER OATH of the person’s behaviors to use agains them to hold them for longer than the 72 hr hold, this “court” comes with a free public attorney for the person “accused” of mental illness! and of course they are sentenced from there, placed back on the gurney or taken w the group who came there in a van–back to the psych ward, locked. Most of the clients I have seen do not have anyone there “for” their side, so they lose–meaning they get 14 to 90 days in the psych hosp by court order.

          So, you stand corrected, with all due respect. it is a public court room, with a judge, prosecution and defense attornies and witnesses….

          The court is restricted to what they will hear also–testimony on the behalf of the client usually falls on deaf ears.

          • This is called a Kangaroo Court as exposed by the great Jim Gottstein, Attorney, fighting to expose this vile pretense of justice to rob those targeted of all human rights. One wise judge said he believed those stigmatized as mentally ill should have the same rights as criminals, which of course they do not. It shows the values of psychiatry and society that they aid and abett wife/children abusers/batterers/killers (See Lundy Bancroft’s superb book, WHY DOES HE DO THAT? and THE BATTERED WOMEN’S TESTIMONY REPORT showing how abused women are routinely humilated, disrespected and destroyed by the courts along with their children). Similarly, psychiatry aids and abets pedophiles, rapists, psychopaths and other criminals and has made no move to routinely involuntarily commit and treat them for their KNOWN dangerousness and the very high likelihood they will reoffend. Rather, psychiatry and society prey on their traumazized victims with the pretense that they are the dangerous ones in a neverending Kafkaesque nightmare. They are dangerous in that they try to expose the truth about this corrupt, misogynist system. in a futile attempt to get justice and save their children.

            So much for psychiatry and the so called justice system protecting society from dangerous people when they created most if not all school and other public/private mass shooters with their deadly SSRI’s and other drugs causing suicise and violence as exposed by Dr. Peter Breggin in MEDICATION MADNESS and many other works of his and others.

          • This happens all the time in my state as well.
            Michigan… And if someone has had their ability to process what they are going through interrupted by forced medications or “treatment” then there doesn’t seem to be a thread of chance that anyone will see they need to NOT be “treated” or medicated by the people causing this imbalance. I watched a friend being committed. The police were lied to, they thought she had done things she hadn’t, I only know this because when I tried explaining that her “friends” had terrified her so much, threatening her with commitment, that she fled and they actually trespassed into her own house, called her case manager on her own phone; all this AFTER she had fled her own house, feeling completely unsafe. I found out about the lies when I had called the police to explain that she had been threatened and then her friends had trespassed into her house. At one point, before all of this, I told her friends that they needed to get out of her house, since it was clear that she didn’t want them there; their response was to act like this was some chance to lay a whole story on the police. If I called the police to tell them to tell these people to get out of a house they were trespassing in, they would explain “we’re her friend and she’s gone crazy, you need to pick her up.”So, I didn’t call the police, they apparently did ; because, when I came by later, and simply wanted to talk to her while the police were there, and was asked to leave the scene otherwise I would be interfering with an investigation and arrested: I then went home and called the police to inform them what I knew myself, and a lady police officer simply answering the emergency line (apparently hearing gossip from her desk) seemed to think she knew things my friend had been doing, which she hadn’t been doing at all. And I only found out these were lies afterwards. If someone is seen as being actively crazy, it can be free bait for all sorts of people to get alarmed and feel free to make up scenarios that never even happened: that they might hear have happened, or that might have happened in the past. This friend of mine was committed, then lit up with medications to such a degree that she was intoxicated enough to convince them she could leave. And by this time also, her Achilles tendon had been ruined. In trying to escape she had ripped it, at the “medical” institution called an asylum this was never properly looked at, although her leg was swollen up to the knee. And they held her there without treatment for it (as if it was a sprained ankle) and it was ruined for life because of this.

            So, she got out of there. Then, she probably didn’t know whether it was day or night anymore, was frantic trying to find people to hang out with, hung out with the wrong crowd that staked out her house, and she got raped. Then she was re-admitted to the asylum (and her house broken into while she was incarcerated). At the asylum they didn’t believe she had been raped. She was accused of walking around too seductively. When she couldn’t hold her urine because of the Geodon she was put on she was strapped up as if she did this on purpose. Then, they kept her in the asylum for another month or so.

            The doctor had threatened her with “if you don’t take this and this and that I won’t let you out.” She was having incredible ups and downs from this at first. Then she started sounding quite wretched and desolate and lost. And then I heard she had succeeded in committing suicide.

            Her “Friends” still would come up to me with sob stories about her. The same people who made me out to be the stupidest, weirdest disruption there was because I was pointing out exactly what they were doing that didn’t help and what would come of it, which did. And they were incredibly rude to me while they were assaulting her with a threat of commitment which they then accomplished with lies and their form of terrorism. When all this happened, I had simply been visiting with her and saw her for what she was: someone who had never had the chance to be a child, and was looking for the space to experience this.

            After she died, I heard from one of them that she had said I was the kindest person she knew, or something like that. I think because they had all been trying to convince her that I was not helpful at all, weird and disruptive; when they had decided she was getting “crazy.” She never agreed with all of that.

            They never apologized, would come up to me like some stinking wet kitchen rag full of germs and rot and hang on me with their sob stories like some kind of infection. I finally had enough of it and wrote one of them a letter telling them what they had done, how they had treated me, and that it was highly inappropriate for them to approach me the way they did, and to stop.

            And I loved this person immensely, she was one of the most real people I knew. And she still is!

          • Since I’m on my way out the door to the soup kitchen, I don’t have time and will post more later: But Alice this poor girl’s behavior was something that most people would have become alarmed about, so this goes beyond psychiatry, but their responses to her would not have been and weren’t helpful. It’s about their triggers not her behavior. And as Donna pointed out, this allows those people to have their alarm exploited and their heads filled with responses put there by the people running the whole DSM. And have the treatment be fill in the blank with whatever is making money keeping the system running, regardless of efficacy.

            She was just trying to be a child… “laughs at a scruple, believes all sham but paradise” and now I’m crying again:

            The Child’s faith is new
            by Emily Dickinson


            The Child’s faith is new—
            Whole—like His Principle—
            Wide—like the Sunrise
            On fresh Eyes—
            Never had a Doubt—
            Laughs—at a Scruple—
            Believes all sham
            But Paradise—

            Credits the World—
            Deems His Dominion
            Broadest of Sovereignties—
            And Caesar—mean—
            In the Comparison—
            Baseless Emperor—
            Ruler of Nought—
            Yet swaying all—

            Grown bye and bye
            To hold mistaken
            His pretty estimates
            Of Prickly Things
            He gains the skill
            Sorrowful—as certain—
            Men—to anticipate
            Instead of Kings—

          • Alice, I was going to tell you more about my friend, but haven’t had the quiet till now to continue. This was all so shocking! Another friend (also stuck on “medications” because of the asylums etc.): she called me up to tell me that our friend had committed suicide. and she was so sad. And to tell you the truth I immediately had the response that the psychiatrists would call “psychotic” or is this what Jesus meant when he said “let the dead take care of the dead.” I told my that she wasn’t dead, that it was her body that was dead, but this could be revived; that it was just so she could get away from the mental health system. I then took a magic wand I had (I had been reading Harry Potter books and actually liked to take sticks I found outside and make wands out of them, it’s quite easy if you break them into appropriate lengths and you can use the sidewalk as sand paper to smooth out edges); and I waved it. My friend appeared before me complete, just like a hologram, but spiritually. And now you can argue: Which part is real, that part that the physical eyes see or that part that’s the “hologram” and wasn’t destructible? So, there she was and she asked me: “How did you do that?” I just smiled at her, demurred and let my dimples do the talking. This wasn’t that easy to process mind you. I actually thought that her body would be revived, after she was legally dead. This way, the mental health system couldn’t get in the way of her healing, could prevent her from having the ability to pry herself free of the limitations and fears she both felt she needed and which were imprisoning her. This, didn’t happen. I ACTUALLY called her mother and told her mother this, and (not surprisingly) the mother didn’t at all respond to this in a way which engendered a group of spiritually active people to go pray over her daughter’s body. She told me they were going to have her daughter cremated. I mean: I even during that time found myself walking past a hospital and believed I saw a whole group of people from a Christian College there especially to be praying for my friend to be resurrected, and I thought afterwards I saw her here and there for a moment. I thought she had become part of a convent like a nun where she was free of what had gotten in her way (she actually had told me once that she liked that kind of a contemplative life the most). So, back to what’s real and what isn’t. She wasn’t dead the moment I saw her in the “hologram,” and who we are isn’t really a body. It’s even happened, if you read the books of Joan Wester Anderson, that a person whose bones are buried someplace else can appear in full form (body and everything) and help someone out. Jesus did this, and it’s happened throughout history: this has always been there, that the “blueprint,” is still available to reanimate temporarily at least, what was there and is called a body.

            A couple of years later also, an acquaintance I was talking to, who happened to be a friend to a trance medium we both know: we were talking on the phone and she “happened” to find a channeled message from my friend who had committed suicide. Our mutual medium friend had seen a notice of what happened and then she had had channeled a message. In the message (which ended up exactly where it would be found at the right moment), the pertinent message was that committing suicide HADN’T helped her deal with her depression, that it was a dead set. And it was when, one of my friends “friends” who had had her committed came up to me starting a conversation and I tried to relay the channeled message, and this person responded with “I hope that’s not true, that committing suicide didn’t help her depression.” that I had to write a letter to who were the ring leaders in this group of people who had my friend committed and tell them they needed to stop coming up to me. I mean ONE of them is even a college English professor and wrote this poem (I could share the link, but I’ll spare you; plus this is confidential): this STUPID poem “baring” the “enduring” name: the “flower-that-has-the-same-name-as-my-friend” always hangs its head. And “you don’t know why.” And then references to wanting some mythical creature to leave a propoganda trail to help. THEN says he can’t tell whether this creature with golden skin like the sun is going to burst or whether it’s um… been hijacked by “fly by night” tendencies. THEN he thinks the head of her (the blossom) looks like a pelican and he would leave it that way “if addressed.” Then he mentions there’s other version where the pelican sticks out it’s head. Where by, I suppose, the reader is left to wonder whether it gets chopped off or whether it stops “hanging.” All of this amazing menagerie made up completely after the fact…

            And now, my friend who called me in the beginning to tell me what happened, I was just visiting her a couple of days ago, and she has this reaction to drugs where she feels as if she’s projected onto something she sees. There’s a name for this, I don’t remember what it’s called. She has to keep her walls pretty much bare, so that if she starts feeling that way, she can just stare at the wall. She’s had this reaction 15 times, and is scared to go off of the medications, because she says she has that reaction as withdrawal symptom as well as when they put her on something new.

            And my friend who committed suicide, her mother: I had warned her that I thought that ,if they had her daughter committed, when she got out she would get so depressed that she would commit suicide. But no, she had all these “reasons” why this was better for her daughter. And when I talked to her after her daughters death she said something like “none of has thought this would happen.”

            After all of this, I was driving in a car with a mutual friend, and for a moment could feel this poor girl’s spirit there, and how sad she was that she wasn’t with us. But she’s actually doing well now. When she speaks to me it’s truly helpful and simple. She was always spiritual. One day, way before all of this, I was thinking about going swimming and she suddenly called me, as if we had been talking about this. She was rather taken back by this, that she had been responding to thought so easily. But all children are like that….

          • Correction: there’s one sentence that reads: “This way, the mental health system couldn’t get in the way of her healing, could prevent her from having the ability to pry herself free of the limitations and fears…” This should read: “This way, the mental health system couldn’t get in the way of her healing. could NOT prevent her from…..”

          • correction two. I wrote: “And then references to wanting some mythical creature to leave a propoganda trail to help.” This is wrong. For all I know a Zeppelin is a mythological creature, but then it turns out to be these machine that fly up in the air. Apparently the poet wanted a little zeppelin to leave a paper trail of propaganda behind to help him with his alarmed stated, that the flower’s head was hanging. This goes real well with a quip of Naomi Klein’s: Projecting the Coca Cola Logos on the moon…

    • Anonymous, you seem to have forgotten that you were upset and criticized Rossa’s unfair comments that went well beyond her personal situation of forcing psychiatry on her son when you said ALL forced psychiatry is justified and nobody has the right to complain because they deserved it due to their actions or inability to cope with their current environment. That’s why we all found Rossa’s comments offensive though I can empathize with what she went through with her son though I can’t condone it.

      • Keep track of commenters here and whom you are responding to; I am the “anonymous” with a lower case “a”, there is another one w a “capital A”.I was never “upset” with the Rossa Forbes comment as you imply in your comment above. You might get to know Rossa Forbes via the blog she writes, before you write continued judgements on her.

        • Thank you for pointing out the difference between you and the other Anonymous poster. I think I would prefer to seek out the views of someone who does not try to bully others to accept forced psychiatry because in their arrogant opinion their victims deserve it and have no right to complain just because these would be universal oppressors violated the rights of their own so called loved ones. This blanket statement by Rossa and your support of it blindly assumes that everyone’s situation is exactly the same as Rossa’s and psychiatrists and/or others forcing psychiatry on others despite tons of conflicts of interest including escaping their own personal responsibility are absolutely right in all cases. This narcissistic view and scapegoating is revolting to me and one more violation of human rights and dignity many have suffered at the hands of forced psychiatry.

        • anonymous,

          If you have been in Rossa’s situation, you need not be ashamed. Many of us have been there and all of us had to have our wakeup calls about mainstream psychiatry when personally affected directly or indirectly due to the threat of harm to loved ones.

          I certainly do not condemn a parent who’s child suffers some kind of psychotic or other breakdown emergency and due to lack of availability or knowledge about any other resources seeks help from psychiatry as the only available choice. Or the decision may be made for them by other authorities like the police or courts. This happened to some people here and elsewhere and they were not happy with the consequences of having their own and their child’s rights violated by psychiatrists or others in the system. For others it may have worked out okay by eventually finding better alternatives like Rossa.

          This is a common story and is worthy of respect and empathy. But, some parents take it further and insist on coming up with their own theories as to causes and required actions that are just as bogus as psychiatry’s and even more so that they try to force on others. So, I hope you can see that having a unique problem with your own child as a personal experience is far different than trying to make it univeral and trying to practice medicine without a license by forcing those limited views on others who have many different experiences and realities that nobody has the right to define especially concerning those of strangers.

          I know it seems like I’m tough on such parents, but I hope the above makes it clear that it is their attempts to violate others’ free will and choices that upsets people rather than how they did the best they could with their personal, unique situation with the best knowledge they had at the time.

    • anonymous,

      Please go back and read Rossa Forbes first post about forcing psychiatry on her son and then justifying it by making universal negative assumptions about every person subjected to forced psychiatry, which were totally outrageous. I addressed this on several other responses you can check out. You have greatly misinterpreted why we were upset with Rossa’s [deleted by administrator] comment [deleted by administrator].

      Knowing the history of many in this audience, she could have stated the truth in a more sensitive way. I won’t define her reality, but it appears her son had some kind of meltdown, so she felt forced to seek help from the only game in town, psychiatry. Later, she learned that psychiatry was not the best approach to her family problems of which her son was only a part since all had to learn better coping skills and not just her son. This sounds like a familiar story for which Rossa would get much empathy for trying to do the best she could for her son with the knowledge and experience she had at the time. But, instead, Rossa now claims that all forced treatment is justified for all victims regardless of their unique history, which seems to greatly conflict with her other claims. I’m still waiting for an apology from Rossa for her outrageous attacks on others here.

      • Well Donna, you’re right, considering the audience that reads here, you’d think no one would comment other than the selected few who seem to know it all. Again, I suggest educating yourself by reading Rossa’s blog instead of picking apart one or 2 comments here, she’s more on your side than you think; but then who needs sides right? after all this is the all-voices count-even-the-doctors and mothers at the open forum called Mad in America! Have fun living in this bubble!

      • Well Donna, you’re right, considering the audience that reads here, you’d think no one would comment other than the selected few who seem to know it all. Again, I suggest educating yourself by reading Rossa’s blog instead of picking apart one or 2 comments here, she’s more on your side than you think; but then who needs sides right? after all this is the all-voices count-even-the-doctors and mothers at the open forum called Mad in America!

        Have fun living in this bubble!

        • anonymous,

          Looking at these posts after the fact makes me feel bad. You are right. I overreacted because this topic triggers some of my own traumatic encounters with psychiatry trying to save my loved ones.

          So, I do apologize to both you and Rossa for that. I see from your comments below you are not a great fan of mainstream psychiatry yourself. I hope you and/or your loved ones didn’t suffer too much harm. And you are right that what’s important is that Rossa is good mother and her son is doing well. I was most impressed that Rossa found a way to improve the entire family in healing with new coping skills so her son didn’t have to play the role of perpetual scapegoat as happens in families who aren’t as enlightened as Rossa.

          Thanks for sharing. Sometimes we need to get these feelings out!

      • PS Rossa Forbes has not posted what you call “an outrageous attack on others” here. Really, stop looking for a way to pound down others. What you say about Rossa is unacceptable in my book, so maybe you should be the one to apologize.

        Her son is thriving due to have a mother than cares! How about that?

        • anonymous,

          You are more than entitled to your views and if you look at all of my comments, I tried to look at all aspects of Rossa’s comment and gave her lots of credit for all the positive, enlightened things she did once she learned more about her family dynamics.

          Perhaps it is true that I overreacted just as I think Rossa and you may have done. I just tried to send you a compassionate email because I realize this is a very difficult issue for all those affected. I repeated that I have great empathy for parents who have children in an emotional crisis and have no known alternatives of where to turn, so they seek help from psychiatry. Later, parents may be upset by loss of control with this system and if fortunate, find better options as Rossa did and apparently is what you are trying to do.

          Why don’t you be more open about your views here? That’s what I was trying to encourage you to do. I don’t pretend to have a monopoly on the truth, but many have been seriously threatened and harmed by psychiatry.

          So, now we have both expressed what bothers up and I hope you feel better.

          In keeping with your recommendation, I will check out Rossa’s blog. You may not have noticed, but I have had a critic following my every post and zapping me with all too typical accusations of what a monster I am for saying or thinking certain things. The truth is we disagree about just about everything including her support for ECT, a known brain damaging barbaric practice mostly forced on women and the elderly. I must confess that I became more defensive than I would normally be about why I was upset with Rossa’s original post being subjected to this ongoing attacks.

          So, I regret if I have upset you and you are certainly as welcome here as everyone else along with your own experience and views.

          Have a nice night.

          • anonymous,

            Do you have a link to Rossa’s blog? Another thing is that I think I may have felt somewhat more upset by Rossa’s comment because the part of it that she applied univerally did not seem like her usual views that I recalled. Oh well!

          • ECT just like someone who has suffered traumatic head injury, induces a sort of Euphoric state, because of the injury. This is because of injury, not because of any therapeutic effect. And now there’s also some hi-hifalutin reference to neuro-plasticity. When this is also a result of traumatic injury. This is like saying that upon receiving an open cut, and a scab forms to help heal this; the scab is a sign of skin healing; and when anyone has skin problems you can start assaulting them with various cuts to create scabs which heal the skin. And people are given whole series of shock treatments because this is believed to “maintain” the euphoric feeling one gets from head trauma, rather than it’s creating head trauma.

          • I read very carefully through the whole complete article and Peter Breggin doesn’t in any way mention Healy as looking for “profit.” What he mentions is that Healy is promoting the idea of ECT as healing, as rarely doing damage, as being difficult to show that it creates cognitive or memory problems beyond three months, and that it is the most effective treatment for severe depressive disorder.” He (Breggin) gives reference to where you can find evidence that contradicts all of this. Breggin nowhere makes any inference that Healy is in this for the money, he simply refutes the information Healy puts forth about ECT. The article is about whether ECT is an effective treatment and whether Healy has given accurate information as to whether it is. When someone refutes what a person says, and does it articulately, and presents evidence to back it up this does not mean he is accusing the other person of being in it for profit. When a person gives information about a treatment as dangerous as ECT, and the information is highly questionable given the research that has already been done and the statistics known; to point this out isn’t an attack on someone’s motives.

            For anyone else reading this and wondering if they have time for it: you can do a simple search of the article if you have the find command in the edit menu. Put in the word profit and it doesn’t find that word in the whole article. Neither does the article infer this or distract from the topic with inferences as to motive

          • I really wonder whether you and Donna are simply having problems because:
            1) having worked in a psych ward, you are forced to see things a certain way, you know if you respond too fervently you are going to have difficulty there, you also know how much trouble anyone there can get into when they don’t hold something back; you can’t help but take these things on. I actually can see how it would seem that Breggin was infering that Healy was only critical of anti-depressants in order to promote ECT, and this might seem going too far with judging someone’s motives. But this isn’t really the case, as it also is in reference to his inconsistent responses to scientific evidence and his criticism of the reform movement.

            2) Donna has had to step in and prevent people from having to deal with what goes on behind the closed doors you work in, so her approach is 180 degrees another direction, and equally necessary and valid. Rather than being careful, and avoiding creating the kind of controversy that can end up causing a person to be singled out in a locked ward, she has to be incisive and create controversy to prevent them from ever getting there, and so she doesn’t have the same filters in regard to responses as you do. And she’s not meant to.

            Please don’t feel I am trying to diagnose either one of you, I’m just trying to say something that might help with perspective. If this doesn’t help or you feel I’m imposing, please feel free to completely ignore what I’ve said.

          • Again, I’m also just reminding myself how to respond; and consequently telling myself not to see things as an attack; things that are half just abstract energy related to possible memories; but I know this makes me feel better: in harmony and at peace

          • In fact, the only inference to motive is that Breggin mentions is this: Healy was critical of anti-depressants and that this is backed up scientifically; but promoting ECT as an alternative and using the critic of anti-depressants to infer that ECT is effective in contrast, when there is considerable evidence that ECT also isn’t effective, this isn’t appropriate. And then for him to leave out information he couldn’t but have known, since Breggin had shared this: this becomes further questionable. And it simple doesn’t add up to criticize one things and promote the other, and be inconsistent with how you handle scientific evidence, when they are both highly questionable. If it’s not about integrity to all scientific evidence, and one thing is favored, there’s a problem here and a clear bias. And when someone does this, he is clearly trying to promote whatever his bias is toward.

            Peter Breggin says that Healy’s commitment to promoting ECT explained his rather peculiar stance against anti-depressants while being critical of those in the reform movement.

          • Saying one can make an informed decision about ECT, is perhaps something like saying that people can make an informed decision to become a member of a violent gang. This would have the same results as desensitizing a person to violence (head trauma), would make them believe that repeated “treatments” make them feel more part of things and stable; and prevent them from working out societal problem that might otherwise be challenging (why do we have gangs, why is there violence, why are people happy with disabling themselves with violence, why aren’t people able to free themselves on discipline that’s dependent on traumatizing people to “behave”)

          • anonymous,

            I am so sorry to hear about what happened to your son. I did briefly check out Rossa’s web site and it looks like it has a lot of good information on it that I would like to explore more in depth.

            I think my own traumatic experiences can cause me like others to get triggered too easily and shoot off the hip too much, which I later regret.

            I wish we had delete buttons.

            Thanks so much for sharing. I hope to hear lots more from you and Rossa.

    • Anonymous,

      You are absolutely right. Most of us had to learm about psychiatry the hard way directly or indirectly due to threats to one’s self or our loved ones. Maybe the problem is when people use the term “forced psychiatry” it triggers others’ traumatic encounters with psychiatry. Again, I’m glad you spoke up and hope you will continue to do so when you see others or yourself being hurt by those triggered into overreacting as I did. Obviously, you did the best you could as a parent and as Rossa says there aren’t many if any alternatives initially for those in crisis since the PSYCHIATRY/BIG PHARMA pathocracy hijacked the whole system with their bogus biomedical model to push lethal drugs, ECT and other barbaric tortures.

      Thanks again for sharing.

  25. Dr. Keyes you have certainly gotten a lot of feedback. I’ve tried to read all the responses but could have missed a few so please forgive if my thoughts are repetitive.
    My initial thought after reading your blog was, “Doctor of what?”
    I think you might agree that Psychiatrists are “Doctors” unlike any others in that their supposed area of specialty (study and treatment of mental disorders) is fraught with so much uncertainty and disagreement. For example, a cardiologist and a psychiatrist are both doctors but the cardiologist actually focuses on something real and tangible (the heart). She/he can see it, hear it, etc. The psychiatrist focuses on the mind and mental processes. You can’t see the mind since it’s a construct, a metaphor. How does one effectively treat a construct or a metaphor? This argument is nothing new and has been argued by Szasz and others for over 50 years.
    Some argue for the discontinuation of this specialty altogether. Let the neurologists continue their work on the brain itself and see what they come up with.
    You may want to read Whitaker’s section of how in the 70’s psychiatry as a profession saw its looming demise. They knew than that, what they were doing could be done by so many other professionals, and done more inexpensively. In an effort to survive, they brainstormed and decided the one thing they could do that no one else could was to prescribe psychiatric medications. The strategy was set and has played out these past 40 years. Being called a “prescriber” may be offensive to you, but that is exactly what your profession set out to become.
    Enjoy your posts!

  26. PS-This post is also a friendly reminder to the commenters who give accolades to doctors blogging at Mad In America, that they ARE DOCTORS first, they like to discuss change and all that, but who are you kidding? they are doctors, thus the title of THIS POST.

  27. I love history.

    Especially World War II history.
    I’ve read most every book ever written by Stephen Ambrose (who, IMO was the very best)

    And I’m familiar with Ernst Rudin and the boys of the SS; the long train rides and brutal deaths of some of the most vulnerable – the poison soaps, the starvation… all of it.

    But I have a question.
    What next?

    Where do we go from here?
    We can get online or go to the libray to learn about the autrocitiees of the Reich.
    We can say, “Never again!” on this site.
    WE can say, “Stop it! Stop it!”
    May of us have.
    Many of us continue to do so.

    But where do we go from here?
    Can we remain committed, yet open to reconciliation?

    I hope so.
    But I think the question remains to be answered.
    Time will tell, I suppose.

    I only know one thing for certain.
    The revolution has begun.
    And is is unlike any before.

    “As our case is new, we must think and act anew.”
    – Abraham Lincoln


    • Duane,

      I applaud your noble motives and thoughts, but unfortunately, psychiatric eugenics oppression, slavery and destruction of the millions they target grows every day.

      I agree that excellent alternatives need to be offered, but we pretty much know what they are in terms of good nutrition, supplements and vitamins, exercise, spirituality, good relationships, hormone balancing, stress reduction, meaningful work and other quality of life issues.

      The problem is that as long as the medical/drug model of psychiatry and even mainstream medicine in bed with BIG PHARMA/BUSINESS/GOVERNMENT is allowed to continue to hijack all the money, power and options through legal force while outlawing healthy alternatives and free choice, there isn’t a great deal of hope of changing the whole system immediately.

      However, wonderful, enlightened people like you helping to spread the word can help individuals make such positive changes in their lives one by one until the number becomes so great, it will create a new pardigm shift of medical care that all people demand for a unified healthy mind, body and spirit. Many doctors have already adopted this new paradigm having rejected the current toxic ones and their books often become best sellers because they work like Dr. Joel Furhman’s EAT TO LIVE.

  28. Abraham Lincoln also led America into the civil war where it pitted brother against brother, in one of the bloodiest wars America ever fought–over what?–standing up for what is right.

    The question is what are people willing to sacrifice for this change, and, what are doctors REALLY going to do beyond neat and tidy blog posts full of carefully thought out words.

    Words on paper mean nothing like action does.

  29. I come from a family with a long-line of military service.
    I know the cost of war.

    Lincoln needed to defeat the Confederacy, but he didn’t hate the South. In fact, he had admiration for the South in many ways, and respect for Southerners. One of his favorite songs was ‘Dixie’. And his wife had a relative who served in the Confederacy, who was invited into the White House during his service there, during the Civil War.

    I remember reading about the Civil War’s Battle of Antietam.
    The bloodiest battle in our nations’ history.
    I had the opportunity to visit the site during a business trip, and was overtaken with the solemness there.

    Re: Lincoln..
    Had he been alive after the North defeated the South, we would have seen a much less brutal Reconstruction.


  30. On the labels and the names thing: here in the UK the term, “Service User,” is very prevalent. But only in psychiatry (my friend with type 1 diabetes has never been refereed to as a diabetes service user – though technically he is).

    Some, “Service Users,” dislike the term because they feel that it implies they are, “Users,” ie like drug users or people who use others and offer nothing back.

    I dislike it because there is not much of a service and it leaves you feeling used.

    Boom boom – must restart my career as a stand up comedian, or some such job or other.

  31. David, thank you for discussing the importance of nutrition. I have always believed naturopaths can heal any psychiatric condition with natural, balancing remedies gently and safely. I also think an internist could test hormone levels and balance them with supplements. The major role of hormones is completely dismissed by psychiatry. All psychogenic drugs can and must be eliminated completely. People need to sue pharmaceutical companies and expose them…….I do not see any purpose for psychiatrists at all. They have nothing to offer. But psychologists have a great deal to offer and should no longer be delegated to such a low rank. They deserve to be top rank. The term psychiatry is also obsolete. So is the term mental illness. People in distress or any other nonderogatory term should be utilized. Psychiatrists need to leave suffering people alone and practice neurology, which is their only skill….I also would not want to see nurses prescribing even an aspirin. The nurses around here think opiates are not a controlled substance. Social workers, i trust even less.

  32. I think psychiatry will change and the change will come from within the profession. It is the only way. I have noticed already quite a few changes in our local services here in Britain and they all are going in the right direction. The young psychiatrists on the whole are so much better at listening.

    • There’s a way around using a psychiatrist, if someone wants to be listened to, why not utilize a psychotherapist, therapist or psychologist, who do not use medications as their sole treatment option? The best advice I can give is to avoid psychiatry if you do not want pills when you walk out the door as your treatment and care platform.

      Psychiatry is based on medication for treatment, simple as that. Psychiatry houses people with court ordered treatment and “sentences” in locked psych wards/hospitals, and psychiatry will never deviate from that medical model. If anyone believes all psychiatrists are going to throw away their prescription pads and “change” you are wrong.

      Listening to patients and writing prescriptions…does not make them open-minded or part of “the crowd” for change–until they give up the rx pad, and change careers, they are still the psychiatry platform most patients here are objecting to; so why not dump psychiatrists? go to talk therapy! Any doctor can write an rx for tapering meds too.

  33. Dr. Keys,

    I see you as someone who is examining her life and where to go with her experience and knowledge.
    The fact that you didn’t get all defensive about being a doctor and continue to maintain the staus quo as a prescriber is good for MiA.

    The last doctor I saw told me her successes were people who who had decided they just didn’t want to live that way any more.

    It turns out that I have been much better without therapy, and am still working on getting off the drugs. So I think that, while drugs and fear and despair are all serious, we do have that ultimate choice, but, as a patient I sort of had to be given “permission” to be someone other than a mentally ill, unhappy person.

    I was hospitalized at age eighteen for two years, shocked, drugged, fought my way out of it. Caught in the system for many years, I believed I was sick. Things haven’t gotten better, but I have, and getting out of the psychiatric machine was the best thing that ever to happened to me.

    As for the “eugenics” part of your post, I was told not to have children because they would inherit the gene for schizophrenia and “you wouldn’t want that, would you?”. Being so naive and having led a sheltered life, I didn’t understand why they pressured me to date the guys in the hospital, who were also crazy and I was afraid of them.

    I hope you will continue to post on MiA, because I think you have it right. It is nice, even fun, to watch you grow and change, and become a better doctor right in front of my computer.

  34. There are still a lot of people who believe it is genetic. Or biological, etc.

    I know a psychiatrist who got sick of being a prescriber and went back to school to study psychology.

    While I don’t think you would need to do that, she basically told people up front that she didn’t prescribe drugs. She is a compassionate human being who happens to be a doctor.

    • I have been talking with Bob today about how to handle this. I can’t watch the board every minute, nor can I always read everything that gets posted. Certainly Bob can’t. I only know about this pist becase someone emailed it to me. I am in the woods, playing frisbee golf right now, but this is important enough for my friends to wait while i respond on my phone.
      I intend to edit ad hominem attacks, rather than delete them. It will take more time, but it’s important to us to be as respectful as possible toward everyone’s contribution.
      But we will block posters who repeatedly fail to respect others. When I get home I will look at this more closely.

  35. These cannot be the pages on which interpersonal issues get worked out. These must be pages for the discussion of ideas. If anyone has issues with how they or anyone has been spoken to or about, please bring it to my attention.
    These pages are for anyone who has been affected by the “Bad Science, Bad Medicine, And the Enduring Mistreatment Of The Mentally Ill” mentioned in the title of “Mad in America.” That means all of us, including, if we are correct, psychiatrists and people who have either chosen or fought against “treatments” with less-than-fully-informed consent. If it is true that something must be corrected, it affects everyone who is touched by this issue and needs the full involvement of everyone involved with this issue. That is why civility in the process of ferreting out the injustices all of us have endured must be paramount, and grievances between this website’s participants interpersonally must be worked out as well as possible behind the scenes.
    I had thought that editing a post with the intention of leaving the thought intact while removing the ad hominem content was respectful. I understand that, for some, it is not. I hate to delete posts in their entirety. For one thing, it seems to mess up the thread. So I am left with deleting a post’s content in its entirety but leaving the name up. None of these options are ideal. So I am left to ask again that people try to be civil to each other and, if someone feels wronged, to bring their grievance to an administrator so that the many people who come to this site for information and discussion are not turned off by finding themselves party to heated conversations that they are not really a part of. I know I have stopped going to other websites for this reason, and it saddens me to think of it happening here.
    Soon, we will have forums up and running and the forums editor, Matthew, will be taking over moderation of these discussions. He will be placing a button on the comments window for flagging unacceptable content: sometimes there is simply too much happening for us to keep up with, and that will make it easier to be sure we get to unacceptable content in a timely manner.
    Meanwhile, I will spend my evening going through these posts and doing the best I can to remove the ones that seem to be personal attacks. If I miss some, I am sorry; please let me know. If I remove some and you take exception, please let me know that and hopefully we can speak about it with a problem-solving spirit.

  36. Alice,
    I just want to say thank you for dedicating your life to helping those of us who at times require the compassion and knowledge that you have during serious times of our lives. Having experienced both the bad and the good that psychiatry offers I would much prefer to have a doctor who knows that having fun is essential to life and living!

  37. I have, at the request of a poster, removed all of her posts from the website. I have also removed all posts that reference her by her full name, including replies to her posts that include her full name in the header. This is an extremely regrettable outcome as her posts were voluminous and high-quality, as were the many thoughtful responses to them. This is a real loss to the conversation here. We will be increasingly vigilant about preserving the sense of safety required for people who want to engage in this necessary dialogue.