Psychiatry Disrupted


On August 15, 2014, McGill-Queens University Press published Psychiatry Disrupted: Theorizing Resistance and Crafting the (R)evolution.  The work is a collection of papers by various authors, edited by Bonnie Burstow, Brenda A. LeFrançois, and Shaindl Diamond.  There is a Foreword by Paula Caplan, and a Preface by Kate Millett.

It is no secret that there is growing opposition to psychiatry.  No longer marginalized and ignored, as in former decades, anti-psychiatry writers are proclaiming psychiatry’s spurious and destructive nature in a wide range of venues.  Even the mainstream media is taking tentative steps in our direction.

But there is also a growing awareness within our movement that speaking out against psychiatry’s abuses is not enough.  Increasingly, we are hearing the question:  what can we do about it?  And in this respect, Psychiatry Disrupted is timely and welcome.  This book does indeed criticize psychiatry, but it goes beyond criticism, and addresses the crucially important question:  what can we do to stop it?

Here are the titles and authors of the fourteen chapters, with a quote from each one:

1.  Impassioned Praxis: An Introduction to Theorizing Resistance to Psychiatry, by Bonnie Burstow and Brenda LeFrançois

“Children are being massively over-drugged as a result of the complex relationships between pharmaceutical companies vested capitalist interests and child psychiatry’s subsequently entwined influence over parents, carers, and other professionals working with children (such as within social work, nursing, and education).”

2.  Becoming Perpetrator: How I came to Accept Restraining and Confining Disabled Aboriginal Children, by Chris Chapman

“And what held all the violence, care, and rationalization at the treatment centre together as sensible, but which has no secure foundation, is the myth of achieving an enduring state of normalcy, free from emotional discomfort, even in the face of violence and oppression.  The children and staff were both disciplined toward this imaginary state, parallel to one another, but distinctly.  Following restraints, we ‘debrief’ new staff to help them feel at peace with perpetrating these forms of violence; and then we ‘processed’ with the child who had just been restrained, requiring them to accept ‘full responsibility’ for having individually caused the entire situation (see Jenkins 1990).”

3.  The Withering Away of Psychiatry: An Attrition Model for Antipsychiatry, by Bonnie Burstow

“The power of psychiatry, its continual growth, its ever more tenacious entrenchment in the state is a brutal reality and not one for which we bear responsibility.  I would like to suggest, however, that antipsychiatry is also floundering because it has no model or models to guide its action.”

4.  Psychology Politics Resistance: Theoretical Practice in Manchester, by Ian Parker

“Women are expected to be as busy ministering to the needs of others in their workplace as they are at home, and the ’emotional labour’ they undertake leads to deeper and more draining forms of alienation.  Women, and the men who learn from them how to behave nicely to customers and clients at work, are thus expected to engage more fully in their work and the stage is set for more pressure and more personal breakdowns for those who are eventually unable to cope.”

5.  From Subservience to Resistance: Nursing versus Psychiatry, by Simon Adam

“Why is it that despite the obvious ethical violations psychiatry commits, nurses remain silent?  What are the institutional conditions under which this silence comes to be?”

6.  Developing Partnerships to Resist Psychiatry within Academia, by Peter Beresford and Robert Menzies

“When it comes to psychiatry and mental ‘health,’ the vision advanced by the champions of biogenetic psychiatry and new realist mental health is abidingly neoliberal.  The new discourse constructs a psychiatric subject who stands in contrast to the robust, autonomous, trustworthy, self-governing citizen of the liberal dream. This psychiatrically outcast subject is an alien, an object of sympathy, and/or derision (or simply an object), a victim of a ‘broken brain’ (Andreasen 1985), a being to be spoken and written about (but who cannot take part in the dialogue herself), and above all else, ‘a problem’ (DuBois 2005[1903]) to be risk-monitored and rehabilitated through the application of law, science, and technology.”

7.  “We Do Not Want to Be Split Up From Our Family”: Group Home Tenants Amidst Land Use Conflict, by Chava Finkler

“Language that emphasizes dependence as a prominent psychiatric survivor trait reflects an outlook based on the privilege of able-bodiedness and wealth.”

8.  Disability Divisions, Definitions, and Disablism: When Resisting Psychiatry is Oppressive, by A. J. Withers

“Another reason that psychiatrized people resist inclusion within the disability label is the view that disability is permanent.”

9.  Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and Liberation from Psychiatric Oppression, by Tina Minkowitz

“The recognition of forced and non-consensual psychiatric interventions as torture represents in itself a step towards reparation of the harm done by these acts of violence.”

10.  Deeply Engaged Relationships: Alliance between Mental Health Workers and Psychiatric Survivors in the UK, by Mick McKeown, Mark Cresswell, and Helen Spandler

“After all, the survivor movement has a noble history of its own in providing a persuasive, reasoned, and moral critique of bio-psychiatry and an equally compelling vision for change.  These kinds of discussions, debates, and alliances are happening in various contexts internationally.”

11.  Trans Jeopardy/Trans Resistance: Shaindl Diamond Interviews Ambrose Kirby, by Ambrose Kirby

“But the point is that people are still being directed to go through the hoops of psychiatrists to get access to medical transition.  And it’s clear that psychiatry is holding onto the right to classify and determine the best course of action for us.”

12.  Taking it Public: Use Art to Make Healing a Public Narrative, by Rosemary Barnes and Susan Schellenberg

“Equating emotional pain to mental illness functions to suppress other possibilities, other meanings, and other stories for naming and responding to such pain.”

13.  Feminist Resistance against the Medicalization of Humanity: Integrating Knowledge about Psychiatric Oppression and Marginalized People, by Shaindl Diamond

“As institutional psychiatry grows in power, more and more people are coming into contact with the psychiatric system and are being labeled and subjected to different types of psychiatric intervention.”

14.  Sly Normality: Between Quiescence and Revolt, by China Mills

“Pretending to be normal – mimicking – seems to emerge in the stories of those who have survived the psychiatric system as a tactic, a strategy of deception that enables some freedoms, at a cost.”

Psychiatry Disrupted is a compelling, thought-provoking volume for anyone interested in this field.  Please read and pass on.

* * * * *

This article first appeared on Philip Hickey’s website,
Behaviorism and Mental Health


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  1. “we ‘processed’ with the child who had just been restrained, requiring them to accept ‘full responsibility’ for having individually caused the entire situation”
    Wow, that’s like the most disgusting child abuse – not only you victimise children but you shame them into thinking it was their fault. It’s sickening but having my own experience I expect no better from psychiatry.

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  2. “Why is it that despite the obvious ethical violations psychiatry commits, nurses remain silent? ”
    There’s a very simple answer to that – they get fired if they speak up and won’t find another job. That happened to a whistle-blower at the hospital which abused me. Of course also the credibility of the whole story (which my personal experience suggests was likely true) was put into question together with the work ethics of this nurse (oh, the irony).

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    • And how deeply agonizing is the realization that those responsible for both abusing patients and nurses are NOT held accountable.

      Regulatory government agencies throw whistle blowers under the bus as they continue to work closely with the *abusers*– helping them over the crisis of an investigation.

      STILL— there is a great deal of gratification in upholding nursing ethics– even to the point of personal/professional loss.

      IF only more nurses experienced the rewards of advocating to the hilt for their patients– psychiatry would be is serious dire straights.

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      • Except I do think that psychiatric nurses are not that much better than an average psychiatrists. I think there is dissent in both groups but nurses who happen to fall into this category have even less chance to express it.

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        • No disagreement when you put “psychiatric’ in front of *nurse*.
          I am not alone in having stumbled into this specialty from many years of good ‘ol medical/surgical nursing– curious and concerned about kids.
          Not every nurse on a psych unit is a *psychiatric nurse*.
          Not every new nurse who chooses this as a specialty right out of school *drinks the kool aid*

          But is is always harder and worse for nurses who blow the whistle– no matter what specialty they are in– because there is no protection for them and no assurance that anything will change.

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    • Hi Ted,
      I think this book is fertile soil for the prolific outgrowth of action.

      The *psychiatry machine* is very complex from creation to perpetuation, it presents a formidable challenge that daunts any one single group or individual who dares to say it must be dismantled, destroyed.

      This book will speak authoritatively to a diverse group — enlisting more people who will commit to the cause. Then, I see the next hurdle will be to the challenge of transcending differences in order to complete the mission.

      I’d like to see a strong, unified task force who will target the pseudo science and the proof of harm violations committed by the *medical specialty* itself– a full inquisition of every practicing psychiatrist on the planet.

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      • I read the book, and I think Ted has a point here. The subtitle of the book was Theorizing Resistance And Crafting The (R)evolution. I think maybe it was a little heavy on the Theory and light on the Strategy. If doing something about psychiatry were nothing more than academic exercise, maybe, but I’m afraid it’s a little more simple than that. Strategizing the resistance might help us better craft that (r)evolution.

        I liked the book, and definitely felt it filled a need. However I also thought a few of the essays carried the book while some of them were more marginal in interest and impact. My concern is that antipsychiatry is nothing but a term for dismissal in the mainstream media at present, and I don’t think this volume in itself could be regarded as a sufficient comeback and defense to that particular challenge.

        Sinead, your words strike home with me. I would have liked to have seen a message relayed as strong as the one in your comment in Psychiatry Disturbed. I don’t think the book I read was quite the one that you describe, but if you, or someone like you, had entered your own contribution, perhaps it could have been that book.

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        • Frank,
          One finds allies in the most unlikely places– for this battle, at least– or so my experience continues to prove.

          This book was the opener for a very productive dialogue I recently had with a couple of nursing students and a psychology intern– their ‘sphere of influence’ being an academic setting where it quickly becomes apparent that some of the *real* story is being left out of the homework assignment, I then met two of their professors. All are following up with me to discuss their perspectives on the material in the reading assignment I gave them–

          I’m guessing that there is an *underground* info swapping railroad already operating at two well known universities in the Boston area. I think that when we consider how diverse an audience we have, the public, the people– the potential victims or minions of psychiatry, it is important to realize that only a small minority are hard core radicals– . Amongst the rest of our population, there are people in strategic arenas who are totally turned off to *radical* anything– and a sub group of them will validate some aspect of psychiatry from exposure to the radical anti-psychiatry platform. The title of this book is like a spoonful of honey– for the content.

          I am working on my contribution– writing-wise, that is. Meanwhile, I am gauging the readiness of an audience I hope to reach, for what I have to say– about what I have seen and the rabbit hole I jumped into, trying to make sense of the insanity of psychiatry.

          More important than the message– is the way in which it is imparted, or so I feel. I conclude this after nearly ten years of trying to engage my colleagues– or trying to talk to people who have had no real connection to psychiatry. Believe it or not, these opposite ends of a professional-minded spectrum react/respond pretty much the same way. Disbelief/disinterest. Go figure!

          Each one, teach one, is my motto !! May seem like slowest method, but ultimately most effective…

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          • There a lot about the mental health system, a heck of a lot in fact, that is completely absurd. Call it bonkers if you will. I think it helps to point some of these absolute absurdities out. We wouldn’t want anybody to miss them in other words.

            “Each one, teach one.” It’s a good motto, on the micro level, but then there’s the macro level. So yes, I believe in working on people individual by individual, but I also believe in taking action. That is, I believe in working on the general public, too. I think we can make progress on the macro level as well, and I wouldn’t ignore it.

            There was a time when all sorts of people questioned the mental health system as a matter of course. Such may not be the same situation today, given NAMI-ite proselytizing, nugenics, drug company sales campaigns, and this ‘blame violence’ on the fruitcakes politician or that, but the joke is on them. It’s not on me nor on mine. I happen to feel that people, as a rule, can be only so dense, and then something starts to give.

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  3. An action for example that maybe would wake people up: Say there was a case where the authorities again tried to do to another family what they did to the Peltier’s family where a harvard medical psychiatric hospital took away a young child from his/ her parents for the same or similar blatantly unjust reason decided by the authority of some psychiatrist . But this time a team of anonymous psych survivors and/ allies were asked by the parents to rescue their child from the authorities and with precision planning the team were able physically to return the child to the parents , parents preferring to go into hiding with the family intact then live apart . The place of hiding initiating the creation of an underground railroad from psychiatric oppression , while family and allies put our case forward in the media about the issue for at least many months or longer meanwhile having tight enough plans whereby the authorities cannot find the hiding place nor anyone involved . While the case against psychiatry is put forward starkly and internationally. And hopefully anti psychiatry demonstrations arise and the truth about psychiatry’s deadly nature and connection with pharma government pseudo science and modern medicine starts to become more hugely publicly understood and more activists created until at the very least all children are protected from psychiatric oppression. and least a total end to psychiatric coercion in any guise whatsoever.

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      • Fred,
        Re : the case of Justina Pelletier
        The potential for holding *psychiatry’s* heels to the fire was lost last January– when the focus of media shifted from the publicized letters to MA DCF and MA DPH – citing the abuse and naming the abusers, TO a political three ring circus that allowed every culpable psychiatric professional and their protectors to cool their heels and plan their Summer vacation.

        Though not publicized on this site. The author of the letter to MA Department of Public Health, former federal prosecutor, Barry Pollack has filed charges against MA Department of Children and Families–federal level, not seeking monetary compensation– in another case similar to Justina’s. The focus is the failure of DCF to uphold supreme court rulings around the protection of families that is the stated purpose of DCF. The goal is to reveal the TRUE cause for the abuse of this child and her family;:the over reach of the Child Psychiatry Dept at Boston Children’s Hospital. DCF has to be accountable now for the actions they took.

        The expected ruling will force strict guidelines for the now readily available accomplice, DCF. this could go a long way toward preventing another kidnapping by *psychiatry*.

        As cool as your underground railroad sounds– it is not likely that Justina could have been rescued from the fortress that imprisoned her —

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  4. Sinead,
    I still believe an underground railroad is necessary even in an unconnected , local, and private way even an underground of one person , one of a few people , or more . In my decades of in and out of “mental institutions” I escaped from inside of them 5 or 6 times . Always made some plan and definitely at times possible opportunity to escape appeared and I took it . Most of the time all I had was good timing ,bus fair , creative hiding ability, courage, healthy legs, love of adventure, a deep need for freedom, and the need to outsmart and laugh at them .Escaping automatically brought me peace of mind and boosted my self esteem. I was caught and brought back twice and paid a severe price. I had a friend I grew up with , he wouldn’t pick me up by car near the “hospital” but if I got far enough away he’d loan me the money to get a place to hide. After a few days they stopped looking for me. But its true my last escape was some 30 years ago. Things are much worse today for so many more people as you’ve said complex reasons and the power the enemy wields.
    I was told once by a wise man ” Men make books books don’t make men .” Even if we are a doomed population we must fight them somehow in millions of places by millions of creative methods and freedom must be taken win lose or draw .

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    • I can’t help but think of Fergus in Takin’ over the Asylum when I read about your escapes Fred.

      Well worth a watch if you have the time. It’s on youtube. Fergus took great joy in escaping for a shopping trip, and even built a hang glider and flew out of the facility at one point.

      I have had a number of discussions with patients about how to escape the clutches of Mental Health Services. It can be difficult but by no means impossible. I know here in Australia staff will put out alerts across State borders if necessary.

      Success though may encourage others to try.

      You look anything like Harry Houdini Fred? lol

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      • Anybody read or seen the movie Papillon? I imagine that if a person can escape from French Guinea or Alcatraz, a person can escape from the loony bin. During my career as a mental patient I attempted breaking out of the loony bin twice, once successfully. I walked to the highway, stuck out my thumb, and caught a ride elsewhere. I ended up going back because leaving the USA at the time was not on my agenda. The other time I managed to walk up a driveway into the waiting clutches of the local sheriff, but it’s by no means an impossible feat. Another ex-patient I talked to escaped using a credit card. The institution I escaped from in the first instance though is much more thorough than it was back then, one of those ways in which I’d say this institutions are NOT improving. I know of institutions in which people routinely do more time than I ever did, and that is disturbing.

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        • boans ,
          I’m going to watch the show you suggest , nothing like laughs to build up strength . During my second forced stay as a 16 year old under the influence of thorazine I eagerly scuffled outside to a grassy fenced in area the first time they allowed , to breath some fresh air. I guess they figured they had me under control. Soon a young lady ran past saying to me “Don’t say anything”. She grabbed an outdoor chair carried it to a corner of the 8 foot high pointed wood log fence got on the chair pulled herself over the fence and was out of there . I quickly as I could got to the corner grabbed the chair carried it back to its original place . I didn’t know anyone was going to run past me and escape . It was a sight to behold .
          Soon a muscled up” orderly “as they called them in those days (1963) came outside interrogating said he knew I’d seen someone escaping and that if I didn’t tell him how she escaped he could make it hard on me. I just played dumb which was extra easy on thorazine and said I didn’t see anyone. They couldn’t figure out how she did it and I never told them. I laughed about that for a very long time and when I think of it I still end up smiling. Houdini had his own unique look. I just like liberty justice and freedom for all. Keep lol , fred

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          • Worth a watch Fred, very stereotyped but covers a lot of the issues about the ‘system’.

            I know when I got locked up I noticed that whoever had designed the bars had made the mistake of making them in curved waves. Structurally unsound and they could be parted with a plastic chair at the right angle. So I gathered round the patients and gave a lesson in how to open them up and walk out anytime they wanted.

            Nice to know your at liberty to leave anytime you wish 🙂

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    • Fred,
      Justina was on Bader 5 at Boston Childrens Hospital.
      Even after devising a fairly well thought out plan with “insiders”– the rescue mission had to be aborted. Justina was literally locked up in a fortress– 2 new security measures were in place shortly after she was admitted — one of these involved a security guard *on the unit* 24/7; the other,with video monitoring and restrictions for accessing the 5th floor of the Bader wing– These ‘stepped up measures’ began the day after another patient who made it into a Neil Swidey, Boston Globe article was discharged from Bader,Elizabeth Wray.

      Creative methods are the only option for any realistic bombardment of Harvard Child Psychia-try. &trists. This is the mind set of my gang!”We” are a small group of dedicated folks with diversity of issues, methods and means– a multi-prong approach– and an expanding sphere of influence.

      I applaud everything you shared about Your escape adventures ! And agree with you–100%- we must fight *them* — for our FREEDOM!! To keep our own minds!!

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  5. Frank,

    Once unity is created between even a few like minded individuals, the power of their unity multiplies exponentially.

    I am not talking about “one by one”– I am talking about the meaningful exchange that happens when two or more enter into real dialogue– seeking understanding, not wanting to debate. Books like “Psychiatry Disrupted” open the way for this venue–

    Look at what happened when the Justina Pelletier story went public: I am referring to the media circus that side swiped the bus that was close to nailing the Harvard child psychiatrist’s and their infamous Bader 5. Enter the politically motivated Pat Mahoney and Matt Staver — designated ‘Pelletier family spokespeople”. The public’s response was to slam Childrens’s Hoapital- calling for defunding the WHOLE hospital, insult and intimidate “politicians’ until this turned into a partisan issue– . the *public* that went ballistic apparently had no idea how our system of government works. The knowledge deficit was almost frightening– Pat Mahoney’s battle cry:”The governor of Massachusetts has the POWER to send Justina home.” Huh? Really? Well, thousands of people bombarding his office and facebook page with demands sure thought so. How ’bout this: “The state legislature can passes bill to send Justina home.” Right. no amount of public education about the limits of the legislative branch over an OPEN court case could sway the Mahoney army from swearing that “Democrats blocked this bill because they are anti-Christian [morals and family values].” Gives me a headache–

    The comment threads on “The Blaze” and other right winged media sites were full of; “let’s start the revolution!” hype. FBI monitoring of these sights and the facebook sites that became overrun with threats and intimidation tactics actually interfered with and prolonged her release. Why? because CT Dept. of Children and Families did NOT want this case– MA DCF was trying to unload it months before it hit the news. ALL of the off topic media and public outrage did absolutely nothing to call attention to the source of the tragedy. Outraged public– yes.,some slamming psychiatry– most going after liberal government agencies that want to take kids away from religious families. Please! And whose slamming the child psychiatrist’s at BCH now? No one– Justina was whisked off to Washington D.C. to meet Michelle Bachman (sp?) and become the poster child for the “Justina Law”– which supposedly will cut off federal funding to hospitals that do research on wards of the state that poses more than minimal risk of harm.” To me, this was alot of hoopla for absolutely nothing– or maybe more harm than good *for the anti-psychiatry movement*.

    The problem with going for the big public reaction is you never know how the public will react.
    I will use an analogy to describe what I think it is a more sure fire way to get psychiatry in position to succumb to the anti psychiatry *movement*.

    I’ll liken psychiatry to a lion– which it is if you consider the power it has over our society. I’m thinking of the effects of *parasites in the lion’s belly*– as opposed to hunting and trying to capture or kill the King of beasts,– and those parasites are the next generation — the medical students choosing psychiatry as their specialty, and all of the psychology majors– the brazen youth who are questioning their *mentors* and protesting the absence of academic inquiry, debate and the absence of hard science to back of the biomedical psychiatry paradigm.

    The public outrage tactic will send more than a few to a locked mental ward. It already has!

    Psychiatry is elite society’s *safe guard* against rebel rousers. Is it not?

    I have met a few psychiatric survivors who do not want to test those waters– or jeopardize their hard earned, long overdue,completely *normal* lifestyles, yet they are active in peer support and educating those who are really trying to help someone struggling with the issues labeled, *mental illness*.

    Changing minds is a daunting undertaking — educating, as opposed to indoctrinating the public and even those in public office is not an overnight sensation. If we focus on building communities of support, then not only do we have a means for saving people, especially children from psychiatry, but we have the alternative in place when we put psychiatry *out of business*.

    This is my vision– the product of 2 decades of wracking my brain and staying in the fray–. Everyone has a unique role to play, and imo, will be the most effective within her own sphere of influence and building relationships based on trust and commitment to our children. There will definitely be a few who develop the ability to engage a wide audience and win the trust of people they never meet face to face. Bob Whitaker is one of those people. He has won more *converts* than anyone I know– within psychiatry; created lots of parasites that are perturbing the lion, psychiatry.

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  6. Changing minds is a daunting undertaking — educating, as opposed to indoctrinating the public and even those in public office is not an overnight sensation. If we focus on building communities of support, then not only do we have a means for saving people, especially children from psychiatry, but we have the alternative in place when we put psychiatry *out of business*.

    First. Education, from one end, is indoctrination, and resistance to indoctrination can gain a person a psychiatric label. Our education, in a sense, runs up against the educational system where the idea is to protect the public from future violence by labeling and drugging children in the present. Not a good plan, admittedly, but I didn’t come up with it.

    Second. Yesterday’s alternatives have a way of becoming today’s conventional treatments. “Communities of support” reeks of psychiatrization. On the one hand, you have the world at large, on the other hand, you have the world of people deemed in need of “support”, or in therapy. Such is not a way to “save children from psychiatry”. I’m not against alternatives. I wouldn’t make ending forced treatment contingent upon having them though. I don’t think any “community of supports” likely to “put psychiatry out of business”. Such “communities” are more likely to facilitate talk of “collaborating” with psychiatry and psychiatrists. End forced treatment, and abuse is no longer a state sanctioned forgone conclusion. End forced treatment, and you’ve just taken away the careers of that branch of psychiatry that would treat people against their will and wishes. With those careers done in, and psychiatric slavery out of the picture, we can start working on exposing the psychiatric fraud that remains.

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    • “Communities of support” reeks of psychiatrization.”

      Think I should have used the different language, like,communities that offer mutual support. Your own local community of good neighbors, responsible adults who know how to network and connect *neighbors* with respites, support systems that are comprised of human beings with various resources and capabilities– neighborhoods where there is a consensus on the importance of helping ALL of the kids around us– for instance… yeah, COMMUNITIES/NEIGHBORS THAT OFFER MUTUAL SUPPORT TO EACH OTHER. That’s more descriptive of what I was talking about.

      Imagine you seek out the local *psychiatric nurse* right down the street from you– wanting a *professional*assessment and referral for your out of control teenager– and the nurse is all about NOT viewing your kid as a *psych case*– OR, if you happened to live in my area, you’ll meet the *been there, done that* parents who go all out to keep other parents from finding out what a horror show a psych unit is– and so on– and so on.

      In my geographic area, there is a swat team of *anti-psychiatry* mom’s– and most were fortunate to have contact with an anti-psychiatry mental health professional at some point during their own agonizing ordeal. Maybe we were an underground railroad for preventing the need for a kid to have to figure out how to escape from a psych unit?

      Though my own kids outgrew the need to be part of the underground railroad for their peers– some 15 years ago, I am still called into action by virtue of word of mouth recommendation. Again, I am not the only resource, by any means–and over the years I have so many more options. Much easier now to connect people with people who understand what is happening, through personal experience– to connect people with easy to access information that resonates with them in a time of human crisis.

      Not to belabor the point, BUT, all thriving businesses need a market. A corrupt business depends on the ignorance of it’s market. So much of psychiatry’s BS depends on a helpless , disempowered, frightened market. Forced treatment is a prime example– even on a psych unit, it is legitimized via fear tactics employed by *ignorant* staff!!

      A confident, humanistically skilled mental health professional who repeatedly de-escalates a *patient* who is scaring the be-jeezus out of everyone else on the unit, helps the *patient* regain control WITHOUT drugs and use of or threat of FORCE, is NOT praised, nor is she viewed as a role model, a teacher . These days, SHE is a threat– like a cross to a vampire. How powerful is that, in terms of what it takes to weaken *psychiatric professionals* in 2014? One lone, calm, rational human being, threatening even the psychiatrist who just put in an order for a chemical restraint.

      BTW, Frank, I don’t equate support with therapy. Back in my day– ha ha– my youth, good friends and caring, sensible adults were all the support wild, crazy teens needed. Of course,this was before the disease, we know as *psychiatry* had become a household word.

      Why do people living in under-developed countries have better outcomes after first episode *psychosis*?

      Are we any less capable of being human beings than those who assist in the *healing* of people who don’t believe in *psychiatry*?

      You say, “end forced treatment” and psychiatry will collapse?

      I say, continue to educate and empower people to believe in their own inherent potential– and FORCE psychiatry to rely on itself- each other, for support- drug and shock each other!

      AND if critical psychiatrists become emboldened and indict the criminal element that is eventually going to take them all down, [anyway], then, the worst of *psychiatry* can form their support communities in prison.

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      • Okay. To my way of thinking “anti-psychiatry mental health professional” is an oxymoron. Personally, I’d like to see the problem person, the person in crisis, business go under. I’m not against mutual support. I am against the phoney crutch business. (The financial injury business seen as financial entitlement.) When supporting human weakness means subsidizing human weakness that kind of support merely begets more human weakness. I myself would like to see less personal crisis rather than more.

        I don’t say end forced treatment and psychiatry will collapse. I say end forced treatment and you end abuse masquerading as medicine. You also end the basis for prejudice and discrimination, so-called “stigma”. I say end forced psychiatry, and you’ve ended the worst of it. Psychiatry will continue. There will always be foolish, and gullible, people, but once you’ve gotten rid of the worst of it, the rest of it is less of a problem.

        I doubt you can count on psychiatry to just wither away. I do think though people will be in a better position to critique the whole idea once you eliminate force/assault from the equation. Voluntary mental health treatment grew out of involuntary mental health treatment. Get rid of involuntary mental health treatment, and there is less reason to voluntary mental health treatment. Put another way, first you get rid of that non-consensual psychiatry, then, and only then, can you work on getting rid of that psychiatry that would take harm for help. When the whole field is based on deception, this type of physician assisted self-injury, or rather consensual iatrogenic injury, becomes as absurd as that murder that goes by the name of physician assisted suicide.

        Should psychiatry wither away, so-called “mental health” would be the result. I think this is a point people must continue to rub into that wound the industry represents. We have an expansive industry today precisely because “mental illness” is the business of “mental health”. Were “mental health” actually the business of “mental health”, diagnosis inflation would not be such as it is today. We’re not just fighting force, we’re also fighting this system that would label and drug 1 in 5 or 1 in 4 people. We’re fighting the medicalization of non-disease in the name of social control. It’s one thing when that medicalization has been achieved against one’s will and wishes, it’s quite another when it has been done with one’s full consent and permission. This is where a triumph for psychiatry remains an abject failure in education.

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        • Frank,

          Psychiatrists are imbedded in our system of government. They enjoy this omnipotent role based on the notion that they are needed to manage a *dangerous* society.

          The two things that neededchange that are:

          1) Discredit the hell out of them– off to indictments and criminal prosecution– (calling all *critical* psychiatrists!!)
          Criminal prosecution for committing fraud that causes harm–FOR PROFIT is also imbedded in our system of government– to PROTECT us.

          2) Educate and empower people– educate is longer, harder– it is about dialogue– the socratic method? It is about engaging and supporting– not advertising and protesting.

          Actually, if not for the *indoctrinating* federally- mandated school system AND psychiatry working hand in hand– WE would not be so handicapped in terms of accessing our *civil rights*!!

          We can undo this damage– education as a self motivated pursuit has become what education looked like before *mandatory schooling*– (think about our forefathers) Today we can even transcend the socioeconomic obstacles set up over 100 years ago– by the 1% who sought to stifle our advancement and grow us into a big consumer market that would support them for generations.

          YES! WE CAN !!

          GOT COMPUTER? Library in your town? — Presto!

          Can you read?

          Can you talk about what you read?

          Can you write?–

          of indoctrination–

          NOW– you can become EDUCATED !!

          Frank, you are making this so much more complicated than it actually is…

          The REALLY hard work, YOU have already done–you survived and figured out what almost destroyed you.

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          • Don’t want to over complicate matters.

            I agree with 1) discredit the hell out of them.

            Disagree with 2). Educate and empower versus advertizing and protest. You don’t identify ‘the people’. Fair enough. As far as I’m concerned protest is a part of educating the general public (i.e. discrediting the hell out of the thought police and cronies.) Empowering is more of a double edged sword. Joining the enemy is not my idea of empowerment. I don’t see empowerment as a government paycheck. There’s more than enough corruption in the world as is. Mad pride is empowering in its own right.

            One way to improve education would be to get the mental health professionals, including psychiatrists, out of our schools.

            The really hard work is getting a system that is determined to expand (manufacture more madness) to contract (stop labeling people) instead. All the illogic in the world is not going to make the crazy rate go down. The mental health industry has a consistently rising “mental illness” rate because the mental health industry knows on which side their bread is buttered. An epidemic is only money in the bank.

            Get people OUT of the mental health system, and the “mental illness” rate goes down. There’s the challenge, but…facilities get money on the basis of the numbers of people they bring in. Do you see the contradiction and the challenge I’m alluding to here?
            It is not in their interest to lose money, and they know it. Dysfunction is big function with some people. The only real way to attack the dysfunction industry is to supplant with another function industry, as in, another function.

            What am I saying? The system is the problem, and it needs a monkey-wrench (i.e. sabotage), that is, resistance. We build a resistance movement. We work little by little, piece by piece, to bring down the monster. Destroy the system, and you haven’t got a problem. It isn’t salvageable.

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          • I know there was one point where I argued against the idea of sabotage. Perhaps it was the wrong word to use, or perhaps I’ve had a change of mind. It doesn’t matter. The problem is that the mental illness industry is bad from top to bottom. There actually might be service industries that make sense, the mental health service industry is not one of them.

            I can’t ignore the role the mental health profession plays in social control. The claim is that a lack of self-control, interpreted as “sickness”, justifies this social control mechanism. I question that claim. The mental health system is, was, and will be a way to get unwanted people (often family members ostracized by their own relatives) out of the way. I would suggest that we don’t need to imprison, segregate and torture people for being unwanted. Instead we need to find a way to accept those individuals deemed unacceptable.

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    • I imagine some of us could appropriate the campus of an old asylum, an abandoned hospital, for an act of civil disobedience. I don’t expect our numbers would be appreciable enough though to hold off law enforcement and the defense department from taking it back for very long. Actually, and more to the point, not being into violence itself, what we are probably talking about is something along the lines of a sit in on state property. Anyway, it would be something to think about doing. I really don’t think fighting our government with firearms is going to go over with many people, nor is it likely to help our cause. We would need to keep any action we conceived strictly non-violent on our part, and that rules out a real Wounded Knee or Alchatraz type of scenario.

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      • Frank and all, As you suggest civil disobedience without fire arms but getting inside an abandoned asylum or even a high profile psychiatrists office or a cooperating psychiatrists office, clearly making it known we are unarmed . Maybe outside where we can film the occupy from a distance with a long lens .Trying to negotiate demands to end coercive psychiatry and being prepared enough to have food with us including enough steel chain with us to chain ourselves together or to something with a plan to disappear the key, properly timed so when they come in to get us they have to deal with the chains and have to physically carry us off while we have statements prepared signs unfurrowed media notified and at least a lawyer for protection.A protest against being made none people , against having our human rights taken away ,demanding an end to coercive psychiatry! Do you think at least a dozen people like minded or as many as possible is the way to go. Also Sinead’s approach simultaneously going on is compatible . Both approaches are compatible . They buried my mind at Potter’s Field .Also to think about boans idea.

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        • “disappear the key”

          The Stazi had a method worthy of psychiatrists where they would chain a person up, have them swallow the key and then place a plastic bag over the persons head. They would suffocate knowing that their ability to free themselves was just out of reach.

          Need to get rid of a key in such situations? Inside a cookie and swallow it.

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        • Fred,

          Combining approaches looks like this:

          Screen play to film maker.

          Your list of ready and willing *occupiers* , including yourself- get parts in the film.

          NOT a documentary– , but, sort of a –Visionary’s Tale/Warning–??

          ART imitating life– thought provoking/inspired.

          ALL profits go into *advertising campaign* :YOU [Fred]are the chief script writer in that domain.

          David Lynch may already be working on this……

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          • Sinead,
            If Code Pink can pull off civil disobedience why can’t we ?

            As far as education check this out on
            Youtube illuminati insider speaks out “rare footage” Charlotte Iserbyt American
            (she was Secretary of Education under Pres. Reagan)

            Check out Russell Means on Infowars on Youtube there are 3 videos

            Checkout The New World Order Defined Jason Bermas Invisible Empire Part l and Part ll on YouTube

            A lot to listen to if you have the time . Well worth it. Essential to understand in my opinion . Probably you already do ?

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    • Every hospital that commits people involuntarily. Get a bunch of guys (and inform a lawyer beforehand so that you won’t get committed as well) and protest them. Maybe some folks are even willing to get arrested. If there’s no hospital where you are then any doctors office of a guy who condones such practices.

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      • Just thinking about this, I wonder if I sought refugee status as a person from a socially persecuted category in the Hutt River Province whether the UN could be forced to make a decision on whether psychiatric treatment is torture?

        If the Tax Dept can’t enforce their rules in the Province, surely State Law has got to be a problem? Mental Health Act apply?

        Another declaration of war by ‘prince Leonard’ and the Geneva Conventions would apply and snatching refugees from enemy territory and torturing them with ‘treatment’ would become an issue. This has potential to force their hand on the issue.

        Hmmm I might contact the prince and see what he thinks.

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        • I’ll bake the cookies and make the hot cocoa. ALL from scratch- using the finest, ingredients– of course.

          Start pumping Vitamin C now, guys– boost your immune systems–

          Synchronize your watches–

          And stick to the CODE !!

          Hi ho!

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        • That’s a good question. Psychiatric refugee may be actually a good idea forcing UN to take a stand and bringing attention to the issue. Not mentioning that there are plenty of folks who really don’t seem to have a better option than to run for it.

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  7. Sinead, By the way Watusi Warriors being initiated as warriors kill full grown lions single handedly with a spear and a special bow tie shaped barbed plant they shove down a lions throat when they charge open mouthed.

    I respect you as much as anyone none of us know everything but each of us has a unique contribution to make .

    As far as leaders are concerned I’ve always tended toward the Bob Dylan’s idea “don’t follow leaders watch your parking meters”

    There are severe challenges and just maybe more then one approach or even varied local approaches are called for.

    I’m not trying to make decisions for anyone else . I do believe I understand things not commonly understood by many others. We probably all do . These things may vary. But we all need to be strong in our wisdom and that hopefully continues to grow and blossoms into the most successful actions to remove the boot heel of coercive psychiatry in any guise off our necks.
    Best Wishes In Solidarity

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  8. Fred,

    Will reflect on the exchanges on Philip’s recent articles here, as I take in the final day of the MIA Film Festival.

    I witnessed and to some extent participated in media coverage of Justina Pelletier’s outrageous kidnapping and illegal imprisonment. I had to notice all of the ways in which media portrayed political slants and personal agendas that completely took the publicity off track, left me even more distrustful of main stream communicators–

    In other words, I do not trust main stream media coverage of anything meant to open the eyes of the public to horrific truths about psychiatry. It is more likely that those trying to share what absolutely needs to be known, will be discredited in some way, or shown in the sort of light that validates psychiatry–

    In Solidarity,

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