“I often have paranoid feelings towards mental health practitioners”


“I often have paranoid feelings concerning mental health practitioners even though these are the professionals who apparently are trying to help,” writes Jack Bragen in The Berkeley Daily Planet. “However, not all of this paranoia is unfounded… It is not my paranoid imagination that in some cases, mental health professionals do not perceive me as a person, but rather as a ‘subject.'” Bragen goes on to discuss some of the risks and pitfalls of psychotherapy.

“If a therapist wants to do some digging into deep emotions, how do you know they will be able to close you back up after the surgery is done?” asks Bragen. “In some therapy, it is like getting an appendectomy but leaving you in a state of having all of your organs hanging out. The flesh needs to be sewn back together and the incision needs to be closed, and not all therapists know how or are willing to do that… In fact, sometimes deep pain does get resolved, but the patient is left stripped of his or her defenses and abruptly can not function in the human environment.”

ON MENTAL ILLNESS: Paranoia Toward Psychotherapists (The Berkeley Daily Planet, October 24, 2014)


  1. When I was tapering off of my psych meds, I had these feelings regarding my psychiatrist. I feared if I said anything negative regarding withdrawal symptoms, that he would try to coerce me into going back on meds. So every time, I said I was fine even if I felt like sh-t. It shouldn’t be that way but then again, there is reality with what we call psychiatry.

    Wasn’t in therapy during withdrawal, but the therapist I had previously seen was great. No doubt in my mind that if I had still been seeing her during this time, she would have been totally supportive. Unfortunately, I just didn’t have the cognitive brainpower to start up with her again and just figured it was easier with the support of online AD withdrawal support groups to get through this process.

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  2. “I often have paranoid feelings concerning mental health practitioners”
    That is an appropriate attitude, one which can save you from a lot of trouble.

    Many people have a mistaken idea that psychologists have some deeper insight into human psyche or know things about other people that an average person doesn’t. There are even psychologists who really think that about themselves – I’ve met some and was always stunned by their obvious stupidity (they would tell me what the “knew” about me by just looking at me or talking for a few minutes that was so obviously wrong that I could do nothing else but laugh).

    In fact most of the people I know who chose this profession (with some notable exceptions) are more “crazy” than their patients and not in a good way.

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    • Mental Health professionals are probably THE most paranoid people I know. Every little thing is a symptom of something, and makes to person under observation a danger to them.

      Speaking of deeper insight B, I have a letter from our Chief Psychiatrist where he stops just short of saying mental health professionals have a set of ‘magic bones’. They can ‘see’ things us mere mortal can’t.

      The lunatics really did take over the asylum lol.

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      • Mental Health professionals are probably the most prejudiced people in the world when it comes to their clients and, therefore, you get a lot of paranoia. This is where it gets funny talking “stigma”. “Stigma” comes with the label, and where does the label come from? Why, mental health professionals, of course.

        Mental health so-called, in my opinion, is best facilitated by maintaining a distance from the presence of so-called mental health professionals, intellectually if not physically. Amazingly, some people don’t seem to get the simple fact that it makes more sense to break out of a mental health facility than it does to break into one. Madness itself is what sustains this industry.

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