Sometimes I think of myself as an Old-Timer, but maybe that term has seen better days. In Alcoholics Anonymous the term is used to describe an older and hopefully wiser longtime member who might be called upon to guide the newcomers. Although I am a new arrival to what we might call the Movement, I spent many years as a psychiatric slave, a total of 33 to be exact. I shyly approached my first outpatient therapist at age 23 in the summer of 1981, telling her I had trouble with my eating. Since no one seemed to know what to do with me, I got tossed around, and was given one wrong diagnosis after another, and more wrong advice than I care to remember for the next few decades. I begrudgingly went to my last psychiatry appointment with an NP in September 2013. In between I endured over 50 incarcerations. A number of these involved “sectioning,” that is, being hauled away from my home by ambulance against my will under orders of a mental health professional who told the EMTs that I was either “dangerous” or “possibly dangerous” or “I guess she’s dangerous” or “please go get her again before she writes another word.”
For the most part, I was praised for my high degree of compliance. I was often called upon to be Queen Guinea Pig for that reason. I did this in hopes that something might cure my eating disorder, but for sure, these drugs were never given for that purpose, since the fools I saw rarely took me seriously. I sampled the latest drugs, including Clozaril. When Clozaril made me pee in my underwear I got to try out Ditropan and found it worked. Finally, that often-praised larger-than-life vein in my right arm quit on the phlebotomists, so they had to ruin the vein in my left arm after that, too. A few months on Risperdal made my periods stop. It tends to do that. The doctors couldn’t figure out why, so they blew thousands of dollars on an MRI of my pituitary, checking for a tumor. Why didn’t they realize the obvious?
I was so good at monitoring what I thought were “symptoms of mental illness.” After ECT I blew about $20 at Staples and invested in four different types of graph paper and fancy erasable art crayons to produce multi-featured “mood graphs” charting my normal fluctuating moods. My use of contrasting color earned me the label “bipolar.” I was such a good patient. My doctor, a resident of highest order, examined my erratic tendencies, reflective of normal patient life and declared me hopelessly female. I was so amazed at his level of genius. Later, I sat with my boyfriend Joe and we laughed together over the incident.
Joe said, “Dr. B looks like a preppie with that bow tie. Ask him. I dare you, Jules. Ask next time you see him. Ask if he went to prep school. Bet he did.”
“How do you know?”
Joe had that twinkle in his eye. “I know,” he said. “It takes one to know one.”
“Of course,” he said. “Ask. You’ll see.”
Next time I saw Dr. B I asked. Joe was right. He was so often right.
I wondered how long it would take these genius doctors to figure out what I had come to them for in the first place, some few decades ago back in 1981, my eating disorder. They seemed to have forgotten all about that in the shuffle. They gave me 600mgs of Seroquel. I gained a lot of weight, and I said I was “depressed” over it, so they raised the dose to 900. My weight went up another 50 pounds. I weighed nearly 200 pounds so finally I guess they noticed me. Was I big enough finally to make an impression? My doctors said it couldn’t possibly be the drug. “It doesn’t do that,” they insisted, but then finally agreed to take me off of it. A few years later I was skinny. That’s when they finally noticed I had an eating disorder. Now? Isn’t it too late for this?
I got marched off to “eating disorders care,” which makes me laugh now, since I’d been complaining of ED all along, and now, someone finally decided to notice, some 30 years too late. Most of the other patients were teens. I helped them with their knitting, rescuing dropped stitches, so they decided I was “okay for a granny.”
Then, I suddenly realized something. Not only did I realize that “care” was completely inhumane. It wasn’t just that. Mental health “care” had always disappointed me terribly. By comparison, when I was a music student at the University of Massachusetts and Bennington College, I was academically challenged by the finest music faculty in the industry. I learned all the instruments of the orchestra and learned to write for all of them. I could hear intervals like a whiz, and write down anything I heard on paper instantly. I used to listen to my LP records late and night and transcribed many of them into piano scores, either two or four hands. I had many notebooks of transcriptions, done in secret, just because I could do it. That’s called “music dictation,” considered a rare skill. In music schools they made kids do years of ear training to learn to do that, but I could do it spontaneously. Now, computers transcribe for jazz musicians, writing note for note their lengthy babbling of late-night improvisation. To me, writing music was playing with sound combinations and experimenting endlessly to find what worked. Sometimes it felt like I was struggling with a Rubik’s cube or Sudoku puzzle, because once the sounds jived, it was like my whole world had snapped into place. The Moment of Truth came when I presented my works to the faculty. Often, I had to re-do my pieces over and over until everyone was pleased.
Performing was a joy to me. I grew out of stage fright early on. To this day I can stand in front of a large audience and read a piece of writing I have created and I do not feel fear or nervousness. I attribute this to having many music performing jobs that paid money. The incentive to continue performing for audiences and get paid to do it kept me on my toes.
From the beginning, mental health care was dull and boring by comparison. I was never challenged the same way I was in music school. I didn’t create the same way. I was never pushed to work to my fullest capacity. In fact, I had forgotten what that was, and had forgotten about the intellect I possessed.
I remember sitting in offices with one mental health professional after another and asking myself, “Is this all there is?”
In fact, it was Dr. B who said to me one day that I was smart enough that I didn’t really need a psychiatrist. “If the law allowed it, patients like you could pick your meds out of a vending machine,” he said.
I wonder to this day if he was joking. Drug addicts who essentially do not use the number of “middlemen” that psych patients use, eliminating the non-science of diagnosis, the rather nonstimulating and rhetorical “group,” or “therapy,” and the need for standing in line at the pharmacy and insurance coverage and all the arguments over payments via taxpayers, these druggies that society abhors completely cut to the quick. They don’t have to play those mental patient games. They just buy the drugs. While their decisions may or may not be intelligent or wise, they aren’t any more idiotic than the decisions made by psychiatrists, and I admit, us patients. Addiction most likely arises more out of prescribed drugs than street drugs. And not all drugs obtained illegally are illegal to possess, though the law may require a prescription or that a person has to be a certain age.
After over three decades of psychiatry, which never demanded that I really use my brain, never challenged me, and never appreciated what I could do, I wondered if I still could think critically the way I could as a young student. Now, finally, without the drain of constant psychiatric monitoring, I finally have the chance to test that out.
The one thing that I do that by all means the institutions aimed to stop was my writing. I recall much of what happened to me during all those years that I was enslaved to them. Not only that, but I possess the skills, patience, and wherewithal to write it all down. I can’t say I’m making my doctors very happy now.
I highly doubt my early therapists and psychiatrists even knew I was going to remember the things they said to me, word for word, nor ever publish these nasty little lines of dialogue, nor expose the things I saw while institutionalized. Nor did they realize that we patients have the right to do so, within certain limits of the law. If they didn’t want me to write such inflammatory stuff, then they should not have treated us so badly. However, they did, so I feel obligated to my fellow patients to tell the truth.
In the medical world, the more middlemen you are dealing with, the more communication breaks down. Whenever information is passed from person to person, it gets distorted. Here’s a simple example that regularly happens to me: I say “diabetes insipidus.” Invariably, the nurse writes down “diabetes” and next thing you know, the next nurse comes in obsessed over my blood sugar because someone forgot “insipidus.” Never mind how often my name is misspelled, information is recorded completely incorrectly, the words “severe” are inserted when I didn’t say that, or the time frame that I dictate to one healthcare personnel is completely skewed when she records what I have said.
I came to realize that when you’re a patient, you’re playing a game. It’s so unnecessary. Most of us know ourselves so much better than our doctors do. We’re smart and we know what’s wrong. We don’t need some dude in an office to tell us. If you are totally convinced that the chemical route will cure you, why not go out and buy drugs directly? Why bother with the appointment, doctor, diagnosis, prescription, insurance, approval, and pharmacy method when it’s so costly, time-consuming, and you so often end up on the wrong drugs, or even incarcerated in a hospital? Do we really need psychiatrists when a vending machine will do?
Your neighborhood pusher might not dress in a lab coat and might not have such a posh office, but will he do any worse by you? Sure, there are risks, but when you consider the risks that we all took and all the regrets we now have for seeing a psychiatrist or even a therapist, and the years that psychiatry stole from our lives, that guy on the street corner does not look so menacing. By the way, if he wears a bow tie and looks like a preppie, come talk to me. We can joke about it later.
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.
oh man. Another satisfied customer out of Mental Health, Inc. I’ve been there, too. I was punished for getting too many “good” pills. Apparently, “middle class losers” don’t “deserve” amphetamines, benzodiazepines, etc. Its straterra and zoloft all the way, baby. Who knew?
I’m glad you’re outta there. I’m glad you got into school and moved on. I’m kinda sorta doing the same thing myself, now. At the ripe old age of 32, I’m finishing an undergraduate degree. People–former “patients”–like you provide hope for people like me. I was regarded as “uppity” and such, so the experts put me through it. I only recently genuinely recovered from all that excellent “treatment,” and now I find that reality hits: what are you gonna do now?
As for drugs from vending machines…if only. I think they’re fairly certain we’d all go for the golden oldies (uppers, downers, etc.), leaving all those Miracle Meds–you know, the ones for “serious conditions”–in the machine.
Anyway…thanks again. I’m stuck in Mental Health, Inc. for a while yet, planning on a more or less graceful, hopefully very quiet (maybe even silent) exit, hopefully sooner rather than later. Its funny…now, my “genteel” family is behind me, so I get treated better. That’s great. Its also…a bit too late for all that, honestly. I can’t un-see the truth about psychiatry and friends.
I’ve rambled…thanks, yet again, for sharing your experiences and your progress forward, out of labels, out of Mental Health, Inc., out of the “patient” role. I find your writing helpful and your story inspiring.
Aw, thanks. I keep remembering the advice of Pat Risser. “No contact.” I think he was right. Don’t even dip your feet in. If you look back, only do so in order to crack a good joke now and then. Hindsight blesses us with the ability to laugh over our mistakes since we can’t erase them.
My experience started 3 years ago when I had eating issues. For ages I was not eating much and my mum contacted the crisis team who sent round a couple of bastard drug pushers who did nothing except push drugs and because I declined the drugs and wanted to do natural methods soon enough a group of about 6 people arrived, told me a bunch of illogical reasons why I would be better off in hospital (I told them why all the reasons meant I would be better as an outpatient) they abducted me, imprisoned me for months, drugged me, I ran away, and this story has repeated itself about 5 times since then.
My eating issues are worse than ever and everythings worse.
When I arrived at the living catacomb security door blockaded chamber or hospital as other people keep trying to call it which drags me into calling it that sometimes, the first time, they told me after about 0 minutes of convo “I think something else is going on with you, I think you have a chemical imbalance in the brain” etc. I could not believe the bullshit I as hearing.
And it continues to amaze me that despite not only not helping, but making your situation WORSE, at no time does even one of them stop and say, “Wow, it doesn’t really seem like our treatment plan is working. What else could we try instead?” It’s beyond infuriating!
Thanks for sharing your story – I hope you’ve escaped!
Yeah, Patrick, it’s because they don’t like saying they are clueless, or that they are not the right ones for the job. Bringing a person with eating struggles to a therapist or psychiatrist is like bringing a bicycle to a car dealership. They should send you across the street to the bike shop, but instead, they lie and repeatedly try to give you a carburetor, or an oil filter. Then, when they notice their cures aren’t working, they pump more gas into your bike and wonder why it won’t run.
More like bringing a submarine to a dairy farm for repairs. Though a dairy farm would be highly preferable to a psych ward as “treatment” for “insanity,” IMHO.
As we feminists used to say, A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle.” So I guess that’s about how much I need a shrink right now. Just for joke material.
Hey Julie, I always look forward to reading your work. Ever noticed with street dealers how they have in many cases tried the ‘product’ themselves and can speak from personal experience? Ever had a doctor do the same thing?
And the other thing I note about street dealers is there is no need for fancy diagnosis, there seems to be a shared experience of the world treating some people like crap.
But the Mad Mullahs of Medicine are taking it to the extreme. Works for some I guess.
Hope your doing well.
Boans, that’s a good point. Many street dealers have at least tried the products they are selling. They say that you should do that if you are going to be a convincing sales person. You will need to convince the customer that you regularly use the product, that you own one, or your spouse uses it, or you use it on your kids and trust it, or better yet, wouldn’t leave home without it. What psychiatrist would tell his or her patient he wouldn’t come in and treat patients without his daily dose of Zyprexa? If such a shrink has been on the stuff for years, he probably can no longer fit through his office doorway….(And they know this.)
lol at psych not getting through the door. I’ve often wondered if mental health interventions might work better if they spoke to the person about their drug of choice and why that has in the past worked for them, but is not working at the moment. I know a lot of the guys I met in the hospital wouldn’t have needed to be chained and fought with to attend the hospital had they been offered a joint and a chat on the grass in the sunshine, and discuss what the issue really is? Instead they ‘muddy the waters’ with unknown drugs (to the person) and chain and restrain and violate, humiliate in ways that are only understood when you have experienced it.
Guess thinking such things is what makes me nutz lol
Yeah, Boans, I remember I had to beg for drugs because they said eating disorders were a trivial complaint, and that you couldn’t die of it. I remember one shrink refused me an outpatient visit, over and over. I had read a book about some studies saying that maybe eating problems weren’t just as simple as “willpower.” However, since he considered me a waste of his time. First he simply canceled our appointment, then he said he refused to see me unless I took three hours of psych tests (I can’t recall who paid for that) and then, he canceled the next appointment, and then told my therapist that I wasn’t worth seeing. That therapist got laid off and the next one was an antisemite I couldn’t seem to get rid of. I finally resorted to showing up at the ER. They told me I had to see the antisemite again but I told them to go screw. Oh and he violated my confidentiality and called my parents, too, at around midnight.
The funny thing is, if they didn’t want me writing about all that, they shouldn’t have done it.
…. and the absolute dumbest thing that happened to me was that in order to have me speak to a psychiatrist, my wife, therapist and a Community Nurse felt the need to trick police into believing I was a knife wielding mental patient by drugging me with benzos and dropping a knife in my pocket to get a police referral. If the psychiatrist had of come and knocked on my door, I would have been dressed and ready and paid for his lunch at the Hyatt. The things people will do to get you drugs you don’t want, for an illness you don’t have huh lol
Your neighborhood pusher might not dress in a lab coat and might not have such a posh office, but will he do any worse by you?
My neighborhood dealers sold me weed, acid, mushrooms and even cocaine during my late teens and 20s . Nothing bad ever happened except some bad ass parties and fun times especially with the mushrooms.
I complained of insomnia and a doctor gave me Serzone, Xanax then Clonopin , Adderal , Dexadrine, Remeron , Zyprexa lots of others and that crap and turned 8 years of my life into a drug dependency drug induced mental illness nightmare.
Hmm.. My main issue with culinary mushrooms is that they seem to be expensive. Cat, can you pull some strings for me? Come over for for some soup, but leave out the Serzone, please.
You were having trouble sleeping, so the doctor eventually prescribed amphetamines? Your dealer knew better than that. The dealers of my acquaintance would burst into hysterical laughter if you told them that and you’d have to try and keep them from rolling on the floor if you wanted them to explain themselves.
Nothing docs do is fueled by desire to help you get well, anyway. Only they’;l tell you they know better than patients do. I’ll never forget when I brought my scripts to the pharmacy and the smart tech told me “This makes no sense!”
Yes, that whole psychiatric industry should be shut down.
But psychotherapy is still based on the same premises. As it is just talk I don’t think we should try to outlaw it. But we should force the government to stop issuing licenses. That does not protect anybody, it just legitimates it, and makes it okay for people to use on their kids.
What we need is political and legal activism, and ways people can get involved and come to see why they find themselves so alienated in this world.
I can’t say the therapists were any smarter. They were just as clueless. From what I recall, most were either completely grasping at straws and refused to admit it, or they were control freaks. Often both. Very few were the type of therapist that stuck to their word, that is, did therapy that had a beginning, middle, and end. And really ended it with the patient cured. In my opinion therapy should not go on and on for lengthy periods nor get a person hooked or dependent, nor isolate that person within the therapy.
In 1981 therapy took me out of my usual functioning environment, music school, where I was doing exceptionally well, and put me in a treatment ghetto, and to me, that was the worst possible abuse. They did that before giving me a single pill.
My colleagues were shocked and so was my family. However, at my college there was a turnover of faculty and the students I knew were all gone after a few years. It didn’t take long before I was forgotten. Many alums were. After that the only time I heard from my college were those periodic calls to ask for donations.
Julie, I cannot imagine a world without you, your writing and, your truth–all of it exquisite. Thank you for being you.
Aw, thanks. Thanks to the absence of babysitting in my life I can be myself, finally. I am laughing over how much they praised me for “compliance.” Geez. In junior high my friend told me, “Julie, you’re so smart, but you gotta realize you are also very naive.”
I am looking forward to purchasing the book you’re writing.
Thanks, that’s so nice of you to say. I’m having loads of fun with it.
“Do we really need psychiatrists when a vending machine will do?”
This is something I’ve seriously proposed in the past. Dealing with the asinine, money-grubbing shrink causes me more stress than anything useful. At least with the poison pills themselves I know what’s going to happen for good or ill, but there is no limit to the damage bad doctors and therapists can do.
Some of the poisons are slightly useful but at much, much lower doses than are ever given by shrinks. None of these should be forced. In many countries, medical power is much lower due to the nonexistence of the Power of the Prescription. For instance, in many South American countries and many countries in Europe, most pills can be purchased without any doctor’s blessing. Only a few are “scheduled.” I believe in the Netherlands many drugs deemed illegal in most parts of the world are legal. In many parts of the world the entire idea of SAFETY is not determined by the State, but by INDIVIDUAL informed choice, or by parents for their children. Shall I cross the street? Look both ways, the state is not your mother. Likewise, ensure that your kids are safe around busy streets. In USA, the state takes over, assuming parenthood, and I don’t think that’s right. I don’t think “doctor” should act like parent, and I don’t think the government should, either. Most parents are far more competent than doctors are willing to admit. When parents are not good parents, we need stronger neighborhoods and stronger friends, coworkers, extended family, church etc, on a smaller scale than is usually done, instead of institutionalization of the kids, which is a crime.
Something ironic I have experienced in the MI industry is that the Mental Illness System keeps warning me about how controlling my parents are and telling me to break away from them. How? By letting the MI crazy-makers take over my life.
Thanks, but I’ll pass!
Precisely! This is one of their formulas. It must be your bad mother. “We are the better parents.” Highlighted, of course, by “group” being run by one male and one female therapist. The Better Parents we’re all supposed to worship. Next thing you know they are running our lives. stealing us away from everything we knew. People say they don’t know us anymore, or miss who we used to be, since therapy stole us away. I’ve seen therapy break up marriages this way. Therapy making spouses into strangers. And they repeat how good it is for us, praising us using a rewards system, that carrot dangled in front of us, treatment forever.
“…but there is no limit to the damage bad doctors and therapists can do.”
I agree, it’s primarily a people problem, and it’s insidious. I think that’s what makes this all so sticky, and practically unresolvable. There is no regulation in these 1-1 meetings. And I’ve seen therapists wield power in a group like nobody’s business, gaslighting all the way. Even suggesting that, perhaps, they are not being sensitive to others garners defensiveness and retaliation. I’ve seen this repeatedly in social service groups. Keeps everyone in their “proper place”–that is, stuck. Business is good, therefore, and power is secure.
One of the funniest moments, looking back, happened around 1982. Yes, in a group. We were sitting around in one of those larger meetings and a “client” posed the question, “What is the difference between staff and clients?”
Ron answered this one. Now you have to realize when an authority speaks, people really listened up. So here was the Voice of God saying, “The only difference between staff and clients is that the staff have their act together and the clients don’t.”
Oh my god, the clients acted like this was the Word from High and nothing could touch that. I am so amazed at how untrue that statement was. The staff themselves were so, so screwed up! They didn’t have their lives together at all. They were no more “secure” than the clients.
The difference was plain as day. The staff were paid. The clients paid via taxpayers. Actually my parents got suckered into paying tons of money for that program, sadly. Another difference was that the staff had office keys. Clients didn’t. Staff tended to have access to anyone’s records and didn’t keep confidentiality too well. Clients tended to keep secrets a little better. In the end, there were casualties, of course. I didn’t see too many get better except for those that walked out completely and rejected the nonsense they had taught us.
You were right about the differences. The clients were paying and the staff was collecting.
They used to say that in hospitals and prisons you can tell by the dangling keys. Only now they have those magnetic strips.
A friend of mine escaped by walking out, pretending she was a resident. No keys, doc? No problem, we can use mine……
Yep. That’s the problem. Without making us wear neon colored overalls or something there is no way to tell the “normals” from the rest of us. Some of them can get fat too.
Well, the TD is a dead giveaway. Back in the day, we all had pimples and the shakes from lithium. That plus many of us walk around “supervised” like we’re kindergarten kids, and some, sadly, are even encouraged to carry those tell-tale stuffed animals around with them. Almost always it’s a dead giveaway of therapy abuse. Or a patient’s diagnosis changes every few years according to the shrink is. Is the elephant in the room big enough yet? Or do we need to fatten it up with Zyprexa, too, till it drops dead on the naked emperor’s doorstep?
Rather…”according to who the shrink is….”
~~~Psychological Distress~~~ is almost always a response to conflict and injustice. Peter Breggin explains something like this in “Beyond Conflict”. But facing it implies a commitment to doing something about it. And this is why Psychotherapy and Recovery are just more abuse.
I don’t know why I am not fond of the term “distress” but I choose not to use the various euphemisms that sometimes the Peer movement has used to tone down when they really mean to say “mental illness” but want to be nice about it. That bugs the heck out of me. I look back on my years as mental patient and I call it either mental patient (which is what it was) or maybe Medical Commodity. I don’t validate “illness” either. People do behave badly sometimes. I am deeply embarrassed by some of my past bad behavior and some of it amuses me now, since it happened long ago. I’ve tried to apologize.
I’m looking forward to your book! Your perspective is badly needed today. Mental health care today is….crazy. I don’t understand how many unprofessional psych docs and therapists can be so emotionally detached and dumb…when their job is dealing with emotions! Excuse me chemical imbalance. I’m not experiencing emotions, just chemicals! Don’t mind me! I want there to be somewhere where I can give a review of a doc and they get reprimanded if needed. Theyre getting reckless and lazy without feedback and monitoring to make sure that they’re ethical.
I am amazed that in other professions, such as computer repair or auto mechanics, one mechanic can say, “Hey, Dave down the street put the wrong part in your car!” and he can then replace your wrong part with the correct one. Maybe he might say, “Too bad Dave cut corners like that, I’ve heard similar complaints from other customers, too!” This happens with home repairs all the time. Your plumber comes and tells you the last guy did a bad job. Does this ever happen in medicine? No! Even if the new doctor (or therapist) KNOWS the last one harmed terribly, they refuse to admit it! This is so consistent and across the board. For instance, we’re finding that neuros will admit to ECT damages but will refuse to admit that the damage could possibly be caused by ECT, even if it means they make completely contradictory statements. As I said in my article the bone damages from Risperdal were noted and then, covered up. They will continue to back each other, never admitting a DOCTOR or HOSPITAL could possibly do harm. So if you ever tell them you were harmed, you are called paranoid by default.
I believe that insisting that they are right about everything and ignoring client feedback will be the downfall of the mental health field. That level of denial and dismissiveness always comes back to haunt. They are supposed to be “service providers,” but the service has proven to be rather terrible for a long time, according to most reviews.
Usually, that means a business is about to fail. So what on earth is keeping this particular industry alive, despite all the scathing reviews, which it obviously deserves, based on the plethora of stories we hear now?
Unfortunately, we’ve got the plethora of blind worshipers. I suspect they’ll all either come over to our side or drown in the Kool Aid they are being handed. I say this knowing I was Queen Blind Worshiper. Praised for my high level of Compliance. Go to the Head of the Class….Geez, I should have gone there and dropped off a bag of dog poop. I always believed in recycling stuff.
When people are desperate for help and relief from suffering, judgment can be way off. The field takes advantage and feeds off of this, which is why I call it vampiristic.
Same with me, I was compliant because I trusted them and thought I was being helped, why else would I take these services? Whereas it turned out to be I was being pushed into addiction and seriously gaslighted along the way, eroding my health tremendously over the long term, rather than helping me to find my way to clarity, balance, and well-being.
Let’s hope others can hear us and will wake up before going down the rabbit hole of psychiatry and a lifetime of psychotherapy.
Ditto. I’m developing a new theory I call the Customer Service model. Based on keeping its customers coming back. You get the idea. Pleasing them, keeping them very very happy and satisfied,, but God forbid, don’t cure them or they won’t come back.
That would be a perfect stand-up routine, Julie! I’m sure you could write some brilliantly satirical dialogue between client and clinician that would ring completely true and shed light on what goes down behind closed doors.
Eh, it wouldn’t even have to be made up. Fact is stranger than fiction, especially in this case.
Alex, my very first stand-up comedy was based on “Family therapy,” and yes, it was taken right out of Real Life. About word for word, except I had to pause to let the audience laugh. From what I recall I used a compound, generic character for the therapist and, I was me and…Oh, never mind, I was all the characters! It was one of the most hilarious things I ever did, and I would recommend it to anyone. It is a great alternative to a huge lawsuit. Laugh last.
Just on your comparison about tradespeople and the work of others Julie. What I have found most disturbing and humorous at the same time is the levels of criminality enabled once a person has the legal status of “patient”.
Drugging without knowledge, no problem, kidnapping, nope not a crime, aggravated assault, no worries, criminal fraud with documents, too easy Clinical Directors says okay, and then their is the unintended negative outcomes which one hopes may someday be discussed along with the euthanasia debate (convenience killings for doctors who, once the motive for wanting the person negative outcomed becomes apparent is concealed). I don’t want to go to prison for kidnapping because we made it look like the person was a patient to enable our crimes so they are a danger to ME as a doctor lol.
The levels of perversion of language to make this all possible is hilarious at times. ‘Compassionate convenience killings’ sanctioned by the State.
Yeah boans, I laugh because fairly recently a person told me (this person was only a vague acquaintance, not a friend) that he couldn’t possibly associate with me for HIS SAFETY given that I was “untreated mentally ill.” Wow I kept wondering which one of us was the danger! I realized how important it was for ME to stay away from this person, to avoid on all costs. If he perceived me to be a danger, well, then maybe he needs to deal with HIS anxiety and I need to RUN away from his dangerous feelings. I mean, after all, people like that could “blow” any minute and call the MH cops. Although acting like a nut as he was I wonder if they’d just haul him in and not bother with lil ole me and my harmless dog. Neighbor turning in neighbor in the days of the Police State……