The Secret to Psychiatry’s “Success,” as Revealed by a Psychiatrist


Psychiatry owes much of its recent popularity to the allure of its heavily advertised wonder drugs that cure life’s woes. But pills can’t be the main source of psychiatry’s sustained success, since as Irving Kirsch proved,1 they’re mostly placebos, and as Robert Whitaker showed,2 people who take them usually worsen over time. Yet most clients loyally defend and cling to their ‘illness’ (and its treaters). We only stick with things that work for us in some way. So this begs the question: Could psychiatry’s newly invented diseases themselves be the hot items that people are somehow being manipulated into buying?

Yes — I saw from within my field how it happened. Psychiatry used to help clients cope with painful feelings by venting about their causative issues (disappointment, interpersonal conflict, loss, etc.) in psychotherapy. As this role was usurped by cheaper social workers and psychologists, it adapted by pushing a new way to cope — by perceiving all unpleasant feelings/experiences as brain disease symptoms. Psychiatry makes this work for clients in many ways, without their even being aware of it:

Denial: When the NIMH says: “Bipolar disorder is a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood,” it’s subtly assuring that if you adopt the bipolar label, you’ll never again need to acknowledge being upset about anything that’s wrong in your life. The DSM’s depression label covertly invites you to dismiss feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or failure as symptoms, rather than face the issues or events causing them. It implies that your life would be perfect if not for your illness. ADHD labeling, by pathologizing normal childhood immaturity, conveniently authorizes busy parents to deny that kids need to be raised.

Somatization: When the APA says: “Mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of. It is a medical condition just like heart disease or diabetes,” it’s manipulatively reframing the public’s perception of ‘mental illness’ as physical, so that viewing oneself as mentally ill becomes a legitimate, respectable, socially acceptable option. To sweeten the pot, the DSM says that ‘mental illness’ causes great suffering. The message this subconsciously conveys is: If you see yourself as mentally ill, you’ll be rewarded with attention and sympathy. To make it even more adaptive, the Mayo Clinic says: “Speaking out against stigma can help instill courage in others facing similar challenges.” In effect this implies that if you adopt a mentally ill identity, you’ll get a badge of honor for bravely and heroically battling what is now referred to as “the new cancer.”

Rationalization: When WebMD says: “If your child has ADHD, don’t blame yourself. ADHD is a brain disorder,” it’s luring you in by telling you what you want to hear — that you’re excused for any mistakes you made in raising your kid. When it says: “If you have adult ADHD, it can make it hard to succeed,” it’s letting you off the hook for any failures or bad choices. Your label authorizes you to rationalize all your troubles as due to bad genes or defective brain hardwiring, and thus pre-fated and out of your control. You’ll therefore never again feel guilty or remorseful about anything.

Intellectualization: The DSM helps you detach and distance yourself from your painful feelings/issues by meticulously categorizing them and using scientific-sounding names. Psychiatry offers endless ways to aloofly avoid your feelings via technical pseudo-explanations like “neurodevelopmental,” “brain circuitry,” “chemical imbalance,” “information processing deficit,” or “symptom recurrence.”

Regression: When WebMD says: “To get better you need expert help; a team including a health care provider, therapist and psychiatrist,” it’s subliminally enticing you to turn over responsibility for coping with life or raising your kid to parent surrogates (overtly couched as healers). Whatever goes right or wrong will now be their responsibility. It’s inviting you to return to your stress-free early childhood days, when mom/dad took care of you and made everything better. Your healers may offer to medically excuse you from all adult obligations by saying “Like any physical illness, brain illness can be chronic and disabling,” as a way to manipulate you into forever clinging to your label.

Some brain disease labels, like adult ADHD, even let you behave like a kid again. WebMD offers this by saying recklessness, outbursts, not listening, impulsivity, disorganization, not doing tasks, not focusing and lateness are symptoms you suffer from. You’re thus not held accountable for them.

Schools and employers are now mandated to make things easier for psych patients (and their parents) via special privileges (accommodations). ADHD-labeled kids are put on individualized education plans that lower demands and allow cheating. They thus get high grades despite barely working or learning. Adults with documented mood disorders are harder to fire for poor performance or absences.

Thus, medicalization confers the benefits of being physically ill without having to actually be ill. Psychiatry not only tells lies to draw clients in, it then conditions them, at the unconscious level, into adopting a ‘mentally ill’ identity. It tips the scales in favor of following this life path. And by converting unpleasant, transient emotional reactions into fixed genetic defects, it guarantees that these reinforcing benefits last lifelong. It’s no surprise that it now sells disabling illnesses; chronic illness management has always been its bread and butter. But now clients are mostly voluntary and come in droves.

Robert Spitzer, the 1980 DSM chair who saved psychiatry by switching its focus to medicalizing, trained when psychodynamic ideas still prevailed in psychiatry. He then completed psychoanalytic training. So he certainly learned how psychological defense mechanisms work for people as shown above. Allen Frances, a key player in the 1980, 1987, and 1994 DSMs, was also psychoanalytically trained. So maybe they foresaw how medicalization would be such a sellable commodity. Maybe that’s why both men repented late in life that their illness-creating had led to false epidemics.3 4

In the ‘80s, my fellow trainees and I knew Spitzer had created, out of thin air, diseases that anyone can meet criteria for. We saw how excited psychiatrists were about how the DSM improved their business. And that was pre-Prozac. I’ll never forget the first time a parent joyfully told me: “I now know why my son can’t pay attention — it’s because he has ADD.” I couldn’t believe they’d pulled it off. How clever it was to turn somatization around from a disorder into an adaptive coping tool.

So psychiatry didn’t really abandon its psychodynamic insights; it just found new, subliminal ways to profitably use them. Today’s psychiatrists may be unaware that they’re master manipulators, but I think they know. It’s one of those trade secrets that everyone knows but no one talks about. But it must be brought out in the open in order to stop their parasitic sucking of the life from our culture.

Show 4 footnotes

  1. Kirsch, I. The Emperor’s New Drugs. 2010, Basic Books, New York.
  2. Whitaker, R. Anatomy of an Epidemic. 2010, Crown Publishers, New York.
  3. “The Trap: What Happened to our Dream of Freedom.” 2007 Television Documentary, BBC.
  4.  Frances, A. “Psychiatric Diagnosis Gone Wild.” April 7, 2010, Psychology Today.


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.


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  1. If you’re saying that psychiatry has become all about the buying and selling of “mental disorders” (diagnostic labels), and the drugs go along with them, I thoroughly agree. As in love and marriage, first comes the diagnosis, then comes the “treatment”. I don’t know how many people I’ve come across who had found their “salvation” in the bi-polar label as it seems the kind of label that answers everything. A life without questions, how consoling. I wouldn’t encourage this kind of fraud, but people have really gotten into this “consumer/user” thing, and the sad thing about it is, the only “cure” there, ultimately, for their humanity, is death. Should anybody want to do something about psychiatry, boycott it. Even psychiatrists can’t manage without their means of making a living, that is, preying upon the so-called vulnerable ‘suckers’ in the world at large. Standing on your own two feet, why bother when you’ve got a crutch that provides some sort of a pittance of an income, and solace. With time, what happens? The custom just grows more entrenched.

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  2. I agree. Its useful to break down the mechanisms of persuasion as you have done, Thanks.

    It rather reminds me of Jungle Book (“Trust in me”)

    Our psychiatrist said mood problems are simply the sign of an organic underlying disorder which only people like me can detect, and we even know its chemical in nature, and furthermore thats why the medication works. It was apparently most important that we realise that the problem was not psychological. You could hardly make it up.

    Its tripe designed to make you resign yourself to long term psychiatric care. I could say his/her delusion that anti-histamines solve mental problems is a delusion that flies in the face of the feeble evidence of efficacy (Cipriani, Leucht, Moncrieff, Whitaker et al), but actually I don’t think Doctors of that ilk believe in anything but persuading you to tranquilize yourself, instead of trying to help you through psychosocial interventions that really do help.

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    • Psychic psychiatrists. They’re not delusional. Using hard science they can diagnose your brain without medical equipment. They can also read minds and predict murders before they happen.

      Yes, those SSRI drugs are antihistamines. Came off mine after 23 years of taking them. Have symptoms of an autoimmune disease. Even many survivors sneer at this.

      Glad I’m off. My mind is back but my body is a wreck!

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  3. You are absolutely right, except on one point: non-medical psychotherapists have never usurped the function of psychiatrist. If psychiatrists are involved in drug trafficking, it is their responsibility, not ours.

    There is indeed a link between psychoanalysis and advertising, and this link is called: Edward Bernays. You probably know his most famous book: Propaganda. A very interesting book.

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    • Many–not ALL–therapists insist on the SMI paradigm for their clients though. If any of those have a clue they must be tormented by their consciences or not have any left–like the psychiatrists they serve.

      Hard working for one of those “Mental Wellness” community centers. Your bread and butter depends on preserving the status quo.

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      • In Carl Elliot’s book ‘White coat, black hat, adventures on the dark side of medicine’, Carl talks in depth about Bernays approach, eg getting doctors to endorse cigarettes and bacon. The approach nowadays is to target patient groups…

        “For years, the most credible authorities were physicians. That has changed, however, according to Lydia Worthington. The new authorities are just as likely to be patients. Worthington is a vice president with BuzzMetrics, a division of Nielsen, Inc., that specializes in tracking online consumer buzz. Pharmaceuticals are their largest area of growth. Worthington says that pharma companies now target opinion leaders among patient support groups in the same way that they target physicians. “In specific depression groups, there are patients who have almost as much knowledge, or more knowledge, than a medical professional, just because they are involved in this personally. And they’ve done all the research, and know everything that’s going on, and they are giving specific drug advice out,” Worthington says. “From our point of view, and now also from the pharmaceutical industry point of view, they are as important as your physician opinion leaders.” Worthington advises companies to reach out to patients who are especially influential online, such as bloggers and Twitterers. “You treat them almost the same way you’d treat a medical journalist,” she says. “They are your press.””

        Elliott, Carl. White Coat, Black Hat: Adventures on the Dark Side of Medicine (p. 129). Beacon Press. Kindle Edition.

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    • I have lately heard from an increasing number of people that their therapist diagnosed them and sent them for drugs rather than providing real therapy. I’m afraid it’s happening more and more often, and that our up and coming therapists are spending more time learning DSM diagnoses and less learning how to connect effectively with a client’s reality.

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      • Many therapists were less than helpful. They “helped” me in three ways for the most part.

        1. They kept reminding me I had an incurable brain disease. If I didn’t take the drugs that made me horribly sick, obese, and numb I would turn into Ms. Hyde and murder everyone. My duty was to take the “meds” even if they killed me slowly and painfully.
        2. They reminded me to give up all hopes of career, family, or any semblance of a happy life. They also told me to only date “bipolars” since we were so weird we could only understand each other. I had nothing in common with the guys in group, btw. Nice guys but not on my level somehow. Most just watched TV all day. Just because you share the same label does not make you soul-mates! Ugh!!
        3. When I had had enough of this I would contemplate curing my “illness” the only way I knew how. Stopping my brain and heart and other body organs entirely. They were nice enough to get me admitted to the nuthouse. Always mystified them since I had “good insight” and adhered to my “treatment.” Must need my “meds” adjusted since my soul wasn’t dead yet. 😛

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        • Such people have no business calling themselves therapists. I am very familiar with this type and have criticized their “trade” since my earliest days in the field. Eventually, I couldn’t stand being around such “services” and went into advocacy. I was fortunate that my therapist actually cared about me and knew how to be helpful. No diagnoses, no drugs, no hospitals, just good, solid questions and good listening. A vanishing breed.

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          • Psychiatry has ruined therapy for the most part. The only one I have been happy with lately is Will Hall. He offered great advice for answering back to negative self talk. Not even certified. Like that matters.

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  4. Although I’m one of those knaves who believes that many “mental” syndromes have physical origins, I have no truck with the notion of psychiatry’s confused attempts to medicalize diagnostic categories into independent entities unto themselves. To be truly medical, our shrinks would have to familiarize themselves with garden variety physical states that can create “psychiatric” diseases in order to properly treat their patients, a real challenge for students in the bottom of their med school classes, as many psychiatrists seem to be.

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  5. The psychiatrization of all unwanted emotions and behaviors has been a huge boon to the industry. Not having to bear any responsibility for ones own moral failings and mistakes is certainly enticing. I know it was for me. No matter how badly we screw up we can always say “It’s not me, it’s my illness”. This is an opioid stronger than anything Big Pharma could dream of.

    I have to wonder, however, how good of an idea it is just to dump on people that: “Guess what? It really is you, not some non-existent illness. You just suck! Oh, and you’re not a very good parent either.” I question the effectiveness of this approach to help people see the light and instigate social change.

    This also ignores the damage that psychotropic drugs, trauma and lack of emotional skill building has done to people’s ability to control their own emotions and behaviors. You raise a child on Ritalin and Zoloft never allowing them to feel no less deal with their own emotions, they’re going to be pretty messed up, and it’s not necessarily their fault. They’re going to have serious difficulty with parenting to boot.

    While I appreciate the author’s message here, and it certainly makes sense to all of us in the choir, I think our message to the uninitiated needs to be somewhat more nuanced.

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    • If someone is so unhappy they can’t get up in the morning, yelling at them won’t work. Someone at MIA got offended when I chided a friend for taking to bed, not answering his phone, and marinating in self pity though (or maybe because) he knew it would upset his family.

      Here’s the deal. This was a long term behavioral pattern. Warren was not in bed or contemplating suicide when I told him this. And he knows it upsets his family and friends when he does this.

      Is it too much to speculate that–at some level–he wants them to suffer too? Misery loves company.

      I’m no friend to Warren if I encourage him to behave selfishly. I’m friends with his cousin and sister and get angry at how he is treating them. They have gone through a month or more wondering if he was alive or dead. As have I.

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      • I think it’s very legitimate to let someone know how s/he is affecting others. I’m not sure it’s quite true to say that someone “wants to suffer.” But there are “secondary gains” that sometimes make it harder to throw off the “suffering victim” role. It can take a lot of strength to be willing to examine what you’re really doing to harm other people, especially if you have “professionals” backing you up on your inability to make any changes.

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        • Speaking from personal experience Steve, depression can be addictive.

          I have battled it since age seven. Ironically I learned my own good ways of coping. Then–at fourteen–my family was homeless for a couple months. In my new school I was bullied/sexually harassed for over two years. This threw everything out of whack.

          I always was way too sensitive. Not emotionally resilient and strong like my siblings. In college I was still scared of people. Went to a shrink who gave me anafranil. Effected me like bad acid. Ruined my life. 🙁

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    • ablewriter:

      Good points. Please read my “Psychiatry’s 12 Step Program for Producing Heroin Addicts” article (and others) to see that I fully agree with them and previously discussed them. To keep my posts brief, I keep the focus narrow for each one, and thus omit other important factors which I don’t mean to minimize. And I will keep your feedback in mind about a more nuanced approach in future posts. Thanks.


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  6. bcharris:

    An amazing “accomplishment” of modern psychiatry is that it’s been able to switch the public’s perception of “mental illness” from something that’s the exact opposite of physical illness – emotions/experiences for which, by definition, there is no organic cause and which thus cannot be “medically treated”, into a type of physical illness which thus is “treatable” by medical means. Would you consider reading some excerpts/reviews of Bernay’s book “Propaganda” to open up your mind to the possibility that you have been “successfully” manipulated?


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    • An amazing accomplishment, but not if you’re on the receiving end of such alleged diagnoses and treatments, which are actually likely to mask any real ailments you might actually have. I, myself use B3 for dysperceptions and drunkenness, so I make it my business to avoid shrinks, diagnoses and medications, particularly trash like benzos, which are certain to be high risk with my history.

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  7. Yes. Interesting. I have been pondering this very issue myself recently. One does observe that so many individuals suffering from depression or other “mental illnesses” stay on the psychiatric treadmill despite its manifest failure to help them in any way, even after years or decades of failed medication trials. They seem to resist any suggestion that they would want to try another approach. Why does it not occur to them that there might be a flaw in the system? I suspect that there is already something in the highly structured rigidity of modern life that induces a sort of passivity in many people that in turn leads to mental distress. Psychiatry further reinforces and exploits this passivity as you’ve laid out here.

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  8. psychiatry sucks….my psychiatrist knows that…
    psych drugs suck…my psychiatrist knows that…
    appts every 15 minutes suck…he knows that…
    there has been unbelievable abuse and extreme anger..
    but where has it gotten antipsychiatry…
    the frontal assault does not seem to be working..
    we still do not know the causes of mental suffering..
    the public still wants a quick fix…and they are
    getting it…

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  9. One of your best articles yet, Dr. K, and very readable.

    Haven’t read any other responses yet; Dr. K may get some criticism for implying (or others inferring) that a “mental patient identity” is a much cherished goal, or that anyone would willfully embrace it. But many people, especially in a weakened, confused, or hopeless state will instinctive clutch at any “ray of hope,” however illusory. For psychiatry to know this and take advantage of it should remain the focus of our criticism, not attacking Dr. K for even suggesting that such a dynamic exists (not that anyone has, at least not yet).

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    • SOME do, Oldhead. Szazs was aware of this. Virginia Woolf, Kay Redfield Jamison, Patty Duke, Carrie Fisher all used the “insane genius” role to their advantage.

      Most of us here didn’t. I always hated the thought that I was incurably insane and had group leaders attack me in group or sick other group members on me. They do this kind of thing in cults, btw.

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    • cris jones May 28, 2018 at 8:37 am
      Breaking News, latest treatment . No more electrocution ,chemical lobotomy etc.
      Decapitation its cheep,quick, painless relieves suffering instantly .

      But Seriously ,IF psychiatry ever went so far ,and one protested against this ,would one be called anti psychiatry?
      Please excuse the word treatment,ooopss.

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      • Yes. Involuntary euthenasia of the severely mentally ill.

        If they cry out, “No I want to live, don’t kill me please,” while being led away remember this is a symptom of anosognosia. Your loved one is so mentally ill they don’t realize how worthless their life is.

        Their “No” really means “Yes.” Humanity dictates that we end their suffering immediately.

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      • cris,
        you are worthless to them in a decapitated state. They like to achieve this in a slow manner. But I fear the country cannot support more “MI”. They might have to make their DSM thinner.
        That is indeed talked about, sustainability of the silliness.

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    • Not all folks with SMI labels are alike. One of the things I hate about these labels is they lead to prejudiced thinking. Assuming you know everything wrong with someone for some reason independent of the person. Shabby clothes, obesity, red hair, “wrong” color of skin, or “bipolar” diagnosis.

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  10. Lawrence you’ve illustrated the dangers of adopting the patient role here, it would probably regrettable if this area took too keenly to regarding this as a form of identity politics, there are already many industry supported groups where people have little in common except their ‘mental illness identities’.

    However one reason medicine won the debate over who cares for the insane, over the purveyors of moral treatment, is because Doctors can uniquely have authority to relieve us of our responsibilities when overwhelmed by illness. And many overwhelmed by extreme mental states can expect equal relief. It is robbing us of our futures by overly pessimistic prognosis, peddling dubious theories and prescribing toxic treatments which is wrong.

    And biological medical notions are far from the only such ideas, being told that your suffering from unresolved incestuous libidinal wish fulfillment is no more helpful than assertions of chemical imbalance or genetic deficiency, unfounded, unproven and untrue.

    In a month when the UN rapporteur on poverty releases a scathing report on how America treats its poor you are in danger of going from the fact of people alleged to be ‘mentally ill’ being accused of being feckless, lazy and irresponsible. Maybe neither? Maybe damaged, frightened and denied access to resources, suffering the limitations of being human in a world that doesn’t often care well for human frailties and vulnerability?

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      • That’s sad really – But maybe you misunderstand, I’m not suggesting we care for adults the same way we care for children – We might care for people wherever their at otherwise we might care not at all. What kind of care did you have in mind?

        Nevertheless it does seem strange that a society placing such a high regard on responsibility finds it easier to medicate a troubled and/or troubling child than recommend parenting classes which have a better success rate.

        And the Placebo response at 50%+ is a not unattractive ‘success’ particularly as it applies to such a disabling state as depression. In fact it seems that almost any ‘treatment’ seems to get as many positive responses as negative ones!

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      • Though there are societies where adults simply move into adult roles but continue to be cared for by the community. These societies seem to be a lot better at figuring out how to find the value in community members who don’t “fit the mold” as we in industrial societies seem to expect everyone to do.

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        • These societies (less technically “advanced” than ours) have high recovery rates for those who lose touch with reality.

          They do sometimes lock up family members in attics. But you have to be truly dangerous. The “harmless mad” can wander all over the village and people look out for them till (hopefully) they come back.

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    • A minor tangent — there’s an element of circular reasoning being applied here if I’m getting the gist of what’s being argued: if being lazy and feckless (a popular word this week) are considered to be “symptoms” of “mi,” those afflicted with this form of “mi” will be, by definition, lazy and feckless. And calling killers psychotic by definition will color everyone else so labeled as likely killers, correct? Lock ’em all up, let God sort it out.

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      • Sorry Dr K.
        I find the view of becoming an “adult and going out in the world” too simplistic. Then that is EXACTLY why psychiatry attacks children now. To get them to conform. And sadly we cannot all be psychotherapists or artists, or cops. Some of us just have to work at mac donalds, and it does not pay for rent, nor kids. SO, we are back to square one. Honestly, I do not like platitudes or ideological magical thinking about an adult proving himself to be an adult when he owns his home, has a credit card, a car, a decent paying job that allows him to enroll his kid in hockey.
        Some folks would rather not work at the jobs that can not sustain simple life, that you are allowed.
        Really everyone should be able to see that as they sit in their chairs analysing people, the job which their parents were able to afford schooling for.
        And I ask. Where do you go grab a quick coffee? To the joint where employees make minimum wage?

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  11. No Oldhead I was saying that calling people lazy, feckless and irresponsible as an alternative to calling them mentally ill might just suffer from the same base assumptions. It is an understandable response but well, appearencescan be deceiving!

    It is after all a common stigma that the unemployed and persons in poverty have to labour under. In an era of the working homeless it will come as no surprise to you that much effort is put into providing therapy for those afflicted before such considerations as actual housing.

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      • “Odd since the ones who do the least productive labor are the ruling class.”

        Like the ones inventing fake diseases to explain emotional trauma, eccentricities, and bad behaviors? Then using fake diseases to sell street drugs under respectable names calling them “meds”?

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      • A case of putting the cart before the horse maybe OldHead, certainly changes. The 40% of America’s homeless who work (another 40% are out of work merely on account of their housing lack) and just need a reasonably priced home! They might appreciate the Profesional concern often delivered with kindness and care, but the profound housing shortage in the Anglo-Saxon world won’t deliver a home. But it is very profitable for the few who own rental'(about a 1,000% raise in rent over the past couple decades heavily disadvantages even those in work).

        And changing the subject seems to be the main idea. The long term cost in health, people getting mixed up in the criminal justice system or/and suffering mental distress might prove more costly than decent stable housing. The best advice followed in places like Finland and Denmark is for housing first even for people with a period of chaotic lives or substance abuse. Well since a 1bed is got for about €500 /month in those places working people don’t enter homelessness much or at all. But the idea you need to get your head straight beforehand has proved to be wrong, providing the resources, stable housing first and then supports proves to be not only more effective in giving people stability but cheaper than long term hostel care, for the vast majority anyway.

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    • Maybe you should check out Bruce Levine’s blog. Saying the “mentally ill” must be biological defectives OR loafers is a false dilemma.

      How about, they’re not able to do much–for now–because of emotional trauma?

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  12. so true!! a whole society of parents, other adults and children not responsible for their irresponsible behaviors, laziness and poor choices… one of your very best articles. clear and concise.

    thanks for writing and please let us all know if you plan on holding any speaking engagements in the ny area.

    all the best to you for always speaking the unpopular truth!

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    • erin321:

      Thank you. I was concerned this post might provoke hostile responses from some MIA commentors. I like to think that it hasn’t because maybe it struck a chord with them. But maybe it’s just that people who disagree with my views stopped reading my posts. After all, I don’t offer any alluring/sellable products like a “better way to cope” or a path to mythical “mental wellness”. I just try to understand reality’s unavoidable struggles and the different ways people adapt to them. My sense is that people understandably often prefer fantasy, especially if society authorizes/approves it.


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      • From my perspective, last time I had what you might perceive of as a “hostile reaction” to one of your essays, I was drawing attention to you falling prey to the psychological defence mechanism of “rationalisation”. In that essay you were suggesting that people who believed themselves to be brain damaged with psychiatric drugs should simply get over themselves and stop playing into psychiatry’s hands. That is what lost you a lot of readers, I suspect. There are lots of people that read here that consider themselves to be permanently impaired by psychiatric drugging. I, for example, believe myself to be afflicted with tardive akathisia. Seems to me like my reposte has borne some fruit. Because here you are accusing everyone else of deploying all manner of defence mechanisms, including rationalisation.

        The plot thickens!

        I am predominantly ignored here. I think it would get to me if I wasn’t so used to it. It’s one of the many unfortunate consequences of being psychiatrised. But I asked you elsewhere, “How is an hallucination a coping style?” and it’s still hanging there, like the last fruit of autumn…

        Also, I have some questions and I would not like them to be seen as getting too personal. But as you have deployed some personal anecdote in this essay, now is a good time to raise an itch I need scratching.

        You write:

        “In the ‘80s, my fellow trainees and I knew Spitzer had created, out of thin air, diseases that anyone can meet criteria for. We saw how excited psychiatrists were about how the DSM improved their business. And that was pre-Prozac. I’ll never forget the first time a parent joyfully told me: “I now know why my son can’t pay attention — it’s because he has ADD.” I couldn’t believe they’d pulled it off. How clever it was to turn somatization around from a disorder into an adaptive coping tool.”

        Which begs the question: why did you go on with psychiatrising for another 32 years?

        Surely the intense deployment of psychological defence mechanisms was what carried you through?

        Honest answers might win some people back…

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        • Rassellas.redux:

          I’m sorry I didn’t respond to you before. I try to answer all questions, but some slip by me (or was it unconsciously motivated?). I am glad you analyze/question me and think for yourself; I don’t think any authority figures can be trusted. For example, isn’t it possible that those who invented new, unverified, subjective “brain diseases” like “tardive akithisias” are riding the coattails of psychiatry by similarly telling people what they want to hear and condoning regression? Isn’t it possible that they’ve also used pseudoscience to successfully manipulate many, as a way to advance their own popularity? Maybe life was just tough before psych drugs and is still tough after. In any event, a theorist’s personal motivations, and the validity of their theory, are two separate issues.

          As far as how hallucinations help people cope, first of all: Hallucinogens were very popular in the ’60s/’70s, and are still used by many to escape reality and create a better one. We all hallucinate every night, and are often disappointed upon awakening and realizing it was just a wish-fulfilling dream. Don’t we all have fantasies we daydream about? Little kids often converse with imaginary friends and toys that they “bring to life”. Couldn’t adults who have no one to talk with, cope with loneliness by also imagining companions? Since imagined experiences often involve exciting, prominent figures like the FBI, God, etc., this suggests that hallucinations can provide a way to feel important and powerful. When they’re self-denigrating, it could be done to project unacceptable thoughts about oneself onto others who now become responsible for those thoughts. If people hear voices saying to kill someone, they similarly may be projecting their unacceptable urges onto others. You never hear of command auditory hallucinations saying to do community service!

          As far as my “psychiatrising”, I never pushed “diagnoses” or “mental health” on anyone. I always refuted the medical model and suggested that psychiatry’s labels and drugs are scams. The hospital I used to work in was more of a cushy retreat for people to get away from life’s stresses for awhile, until they could get back on their feet after going through a rough time in their life. It had no emergency room or forced commitment, and drugs were used sparingly. Staff was caring and always available to talk to, and there were many recreational/creative activities. I took my clients for long walks for sessions on its beautiful grounds. In my solo practice, I offer a place for clients to cope with feelings/issues by venting to an interested listener who treats them as equals with their own individual stories to tell. We often talk while going for a walk in the trails by my office. I don’t authoritatively tell them how to live life or proclaim myself to be an expert on anything. I may offer to try to interpret a dream now and then if they want. We seem to each enjoy the experience for what it is.


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          • “I’m sorry I didn’t respond to you before. I try to answer all questions, but some slip by me (or was it unconsciously motivated?). I am glad you analyze/question me and think for yourself; I don’t think any authority figures can be trusted. For example, isn’t it possible that those who invented new, unverified, subjective “brain diseases” like “tardive akithisias” are riding the coattails of psychiatry by similarly telling people what they want to hear and condoning regression?”

            In my experience, and the experience of others, tardive akathisia is not something that any health professional is willing to diagnose; most have never heard of it, let alone been trained in how to spot it. It’s often more obvious and macabre cousin, tardive dyskinesia, is also less likely to be diagnosed. It’s generally kept institutionally hush-hush. Like you they prefer to rationalise it away, or pathologise, or anything else, a character flaw even, a slack attitude, or out and out tomfoolery, rather than a manifestation of permanent brain damage. I’ve never sought a diagnosis for tardive akathisia or dyskinesia, or any recompence or redress; I’ve put two and two together and worked it out for myself.

            As I’ve written before, as a general rule, the closer someone is to participating in the drugging, the less likely they are to see the damage, or admit to it. Some professionals have, in confidence, opened up to me about it: you were right to resist further drugging; I’ve seen what it does to people… Do you really think they’d be standing shoulder to shoulder with me if I attempted to make a fuss?

            As an aside, do you think Dr David Healy’s Side Effect project ( is a waste of time, and that problems people complain about, such as permanent sexual dysfunction, are simply them being childish and non-adapting to adult life?
            or that someone has deceived them into having problems caused dy drugs?

            I also have very mild tardive dyskinesia. I purse my lips involuntarily. It was horrifying when lip-pursing became culturally normalised by the selfie. And came as no comfort at all. But again, I expect you’d shrug your shoulders and dismiss it as attention-seeking or somesuch childish silliness. My gait is also permanently askewed. Often looks like I’m walking face-fowards into a gale-force wind. I’ve been ridiculed for this. I try and shut people up by claiming I was born with a congenital condition, curvature of the spine. Some seem appeased by this concoction and leave off. It would be better to live in less toxic world where the damages meted out to me were acknowledged for what they are.

            Again, I did not have these dyskinesia problems before the antipsychotic. But, I stress, they are relatively mild in me.

            It certainly isn’t something I want to hear or take some status from. How on earth would someone benefit from something that almost everyone refused to acknowledge?

            To be afflicted with akathisia, permanently, is crushing; it kicks in often, though not always, when I’m stressed. If I can get away from people, I can see it through. I have to kind of close myself down to contain it. If it kicks in and I can’t get away from people, I appear altogether deranged. When I first realised I had been damaged in this way, I was devastated. Because now I sometimes appear just like the stereotypical lunatic they originally claimed me as. I’m not upset that you are one of many of the camp that refuse to believe that antipsychotics can damage people in this way. You go the extra mile in your denial, and that’s what caught my eye. Your high-octane denial doesn’t upset me, because I can understand to some degree why you and others refuse it. And I don’t need you or others to accept it. I log it now as another of the many human cruelties, whether intended or not. It’s a cruel dismissal.

            What you’re suggesting is that tardive akathisia is regressive — ie a return to childish ways — and that I’ve been duped by professionals into believing that it’s a form of brain damage. Whereas in reality, in the culture in which I live, it’s taboo to talk of permanent brain damage, there is no-one so far as I know willing to diagnose it, and I haven’t sought a diagnosis for it. There isn’t anywhere to go, seemingly. So it happens, some people accept that… but, it happened to you? No, no, no. It doesn’t happen to people here, it happens to people elsewhere. It can’t possibly happen to people here, because we are here, and we dole out antipsychotics. It happens elsewhere, where other people dole out antipsychotics. You see… these defence mechanisms which you’ve been acquainting yourself with… I’ve been watching and noting them for nearly twenty years.

            Of course, I may be wrong. And it’s just a coincidence. I dont have tardive akathisia or dyskinesia. I’m just playing childish games. I have not learnt to control my emotions. The brain damage is no such thing. It’s a character-flaw. The poor gait that came after the antipsychotics was a conscious or unconscious act of defiance, or civil disobedience. I’m rebelling, and need to grow up.

            Of course, I know some people get off from taunting me. They also get off from denial. When I was being tortured by an antipsychotic, The Injector, as I came to refer to him, would grin and scoff away my protestations. I’ve forgiven him. It’s in my character to do that. And just recently, when my partner was taken into the psychiatric unit for a weekend, I discovered that The Injector’s daughter was working on the wing, and she came in to the television room, to have a gawp at me. I expect now she too is injecting people — for their own good, against their will. Following in her father’s footsteps. And she too will be away with the fairies when it comes to the subject of permanent brain damage…

            Whereas in fact, in terms of emotional control, as a consequence of being a psychiatric patient for so long, I’ve learnt to control my emotions to such a degree that these days I get accused of not having any. In fact, I was reminiscing recently and remembered that I did get offered therapy. And she came to visit me, and after a few minutes of talking — and I have realistic and understandable fears of mental health professinals — she said that she didn’t think she could help me? Why, I asked, perplexed. Because I work with emotions, and you… I need to work with emotions…

            Sometimes it can be a very lonely around people…

            When I allow my emotions with a mental health professional, I need to allow my remorse at how I’ve been permanently mangled by antipsychotics. And that is one of the several taboo conversations. And if that was allowed, and I was responded to, then it might open the doors to litigation. And I want to talk about how the system has unwittingly fed my paranoia. But again, that’s just me looking for a scapegoat and not taking personal responsibility. So what’s the effing point? There’s no treatment that can reverse all this. Nothing.

            So yes, I know all about these defence mechanisms that professionals like yourself deploy. Because of the kind of person I am, I often seek out excuses for people when they do this, perhaps more than I should, but to me it’s important not to become a bitter person, and be forgiving, and accepting of peoples’ motivations and weaknesses and flaws.

            So I have to keep schtum, and the difficult conversation isn’t permitted to happen.

            You then go on to write:

            “Isn’t it possible that they’ve also used pseudoscience to successfully manipulate many, as a way to advance their own popularity?”

            I would be interested in your pointing to where the diagnoses of tardive akathisia and tardive dyskinesia, and the others, have been compellingly refuted.

            “Maybe life was just tough before psych drugs and is still tough after. In any event, a theorist’s personal motivations, and the validity of their theory, are two separate issues.”

            I’ve re-read that a numer of times and I can’t understand you. It doesn’t run on well from what came before. I think what you are saying is, One does not have to practice what one preaches. Or, walking the walk and talking the talk are two different things and if one does one and not the other, there is no cause for critique or finger-pointing. Or words to that effect. My view is: it absolutely *is* essential that you don’t have a dirty face if you intend to pontificate upon the importanace of personal hygiene. On that and much else we’re probably going to have to agree to disagree.

            “As far as how hallucinations help people cope, first of all: Hallucinogens were very popular in the ’60s/’70s, and are still used by many to escape reality and create a better one. We all hallucinate every night, and are often disappointed upon awakening and realizing it was just a wish-fulfilling dream. Don’t we all have fantasies we daydream about? Little kids often converse with imaginary friends and toys that they “bring to life”. Couldn’t adults who have no one to talk with, cope with loneliness by also imagining companions? Since imagined experiences often involve exciting, prominent figures like the FBI, God, etc., this suggests that hallucinations can provide a way to feel important and powerful. When they’re self-denigrating, it could be done to project unacceptable thoughts about oneself onto others who now become responsible for those thoughts.”

            I’ve written much the same about dreams. Dreams being total hallucinations, ie. we are not conscious when they occur. I’ve underlined that so as to remind people that we all possess powerful mechanisms to subvert reality. Where we bifurcate is that you suggest that when this happens in waking life, it is indicative of childish thinking. And there are some influential poeple out there that have described this happening to them. For instance, Rufus May, who suggetsed it was his childish daydreaming, to transform a mundane life into a more thrilling one, that led him into psychosis. In other words, his psychosis was self-willed. I have no doubt that that happens, but it isn’t something many people can relate to. I certainly can’t. Whereas I think that whatever the unknown mechanism is that is able to construct whole realities when we sleep, that same mechanism must in some way be funtionally impaired in some people, causing them to unknowingly over-imagine waking life. It’s as good an explanation as any.

            “If people hear voices saying to kill someone, they similarly may be projecting their unacceptable urges onto others. You never hear of command auditory hallucinations saying to do community service!”

            Mother Theresa heard command hallucinations to sacrifice her life in the pursuit of helping orphans. Lots of people do have command hallucinations encouraging them to go forth in life and do good things, in a humble and quiet manner. And they go on to do just that.

            I kind of get where you are coming from. I’ve run into this kind of over-simplified thinking before. If you will, there is a school of thought in psychiatry that considers all mental illnesses to be personality disorders, and I consider your approach to fit neatly into that camp. Consequently I’m getting a better handle on your schtick. In my time as a psychiatric patient I have witnessed a number of people that would attract a label of personality disorder, or that have attracted one, deliberately mimicking the experiences and the appearance of people with schizophrenia and so on, in order that they are better treated, get access to more drugs, benefits, hospital stays and so on, and become, in time, quite skilled at it. When they finally tire of these games, they perform one final deception: the total recovery. Good for them, I say, but not so good for those they’ve been mimicking.

            “As far as my “psychiatrising”, I never pushed “diagnoses” or “mental health” on anyone. I always refuted the medical model and suggested that psychiatry’s labels and drugs are scams. The hospital I used to work in was more of a cushy retreat for people to get away from life’s stresses for awhile, until they could get back on their feet after going through a rough time in their life. It had no emergency room or forced commitment, and drugs were used sparingly. Staff was caring and always available to talk to, and there were many recreational/creative activities. I took my clients for long walks for sessions on its beautiful grounds. In my solo practice, I offer a place for clients to cope with feelings/issues by venting to an interested listener who treats them as equals with their own individual stories to tell. We often talk while going for a walk in the trails by my office. I don’t authoritatively tell them how to live life or proclaim myself to be an expert on anything. I may offer to try to interpret a dream now and then if they want. We seem to each enjoy the experience for what it is.”

            I don’t blame you. If someone offered me several hundred thousand dollars in a profession I fundamentally disagreed with, but could remain in, while rejecting all of its core principles, and its core treatments, and I could nonetheless go on as an authority figure, it’d be an understatement to suggest I’d be tempted. So fair play to you on that score. If only life allowed more people to do that. Although psychiatrists have long wiped their hands of me. I think, not in a bad way. They trust I’ll make it through, and would rather suffer than take the drugs.

            I agree that walking in nature is a great way to clear the mind. And I can appreciate why people enjoy those times with you. You have a lot to say that’s provoking of thought and self-reflection. Although it is also immature to be closed-minded, and to suggest you have an understanding of something which is almost entirely a mystery. I agree with you up to a point. A lot of peoples’ problems are characterological, and even if they aren’t, almost all of us would take some benefit from a good kick in the arse from time to time.

            But some people really do have problems of schizophrenia. They aren’t in it for the status (some fucking status!), they aren’t in it for the money (ie. poverty), and they aren’t in it as a way to make their lives more interesting, or at least, less dull, or even to escape from adult responsilities.

            Daniel Schreber is considered by many to have been the quintessential paranoid schizophrenic. He was a Judge. He had attained the top of his profession, was widely respected and considered a good and honourable man. Then psychosis fell upon him. He tries in his memoir to explain how convoluted and peculiar his experiences are. We all take our biases to a text, and find them there. You’d probably find a District Judge that believed his life to be dull and his station in life to be inadequate, and so day-dreamed himself into the lunatic asylum. I found in his book a man that was confused and bewildered by how he lost his mind, and badly wanted to return to his auspicious life.

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          • Dr, please, Dr, a bit of delicacy before you use psychodynamic expressions. It was predictable and written in the sky your comments about regression, tardive akithisias, child-like regression and like would be offensive, and dismissing to Rasselas (and most likely others here). Maybe you had intended to provoque the discussion – you succeeded – but I’m afraid your excellent article lost a lot of credibility by reverting to psycho-bable simplistic like advancing (it all comes down to the mother-child relationship, or personality explains everything or even Biology is the best explanation for all MI !).

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          • Sorry for being so abrasive, my tone could of been more courteous. O didn’t notice your post was referring to another one, I figured it was still on this subject. Of course, disease mongering is a terrible modern tragedy and anyone can be guilty for inventing new diseases. But then, I crossed so many “weird looking,walking, twitching” people in my professional as well as personal life, it seems very likely that TD is only the tip of the iceberg of an eventually long liste of permanent damage to the brain and SNS of many unfortunates. Just the fact that TD has been known for a long while and that it is still often denied says a lot about our willingness to recognize that variety of harm. So I still think it is a very delicate matter to dispute with someone that is convinced of presenting such a terrible condition. A bit like arguing with someone coming off meds that complains about brain zaps or such. Whatever, I present my sorrow for my acting out on you and send you my best regards. We are discussing very muddy water subjects and it’s easy to slip on a slippery stone, get mud on ourselves or event fall face fist in the poodle. We are only humans after all and at least, we are engaging in such challenging discussions.

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      • When describing motivation and inner strength I often give the example of two severely identically physically harmed individuals. One wallows in his injuries, in self pity. The other wants to be anything but a victim, and fights and fights to get his life back.
        Sadly, psychiatry and much of modern society like us all to be victims and blame someone or something else for our failures. It’s time to take responsibility for our actions and our lives, and know the power to heal from psychiatric harm and from nearly anything ( and I’ve been through hell) is inside of us. We must see ourselves as capable, and not beaten and beyond repair.
        Thanks again!

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        • Rasellas.redux:

          I am glad you read my article. Thank you for all your thoughtful/thought-provoking responses and insights, and for sharing your horrible experiences at the hands of my field. I in no way want to come across as excusing or minimizing the harm psychiatry has done to your life and many others’.


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      • Great comments on our survival-oriented manipulation of the other, Lawrence. And given that Doctors are trained to perform dispassionately, I wonder if you might comment on the degree of ‘projection’ involved in the medical perception of others?

        The great wisdom tradition of humanity suggests that understanding a well-phrased aphorism (short pithy comment full of meaning) is more profitable than a thousand words in a book of thoughtful ‘rationalizations.’

        And given that bipolar disorder is also known to psychiatrists as a disorder of ‘affect,’ of (which Grammarly reflexively assumes I meant ‘effect’) can you please comment on an aphorism from Alan N Schore’s book: Affect Regulation & the Origins of the Self:

        The attempt to regulate affect – to minimize unpleasant feelings and to maximize pleasant ones – is the driving force in human motivation.

        This modern-day aphorism about the nature of our human self, which I first read in 2007, after almost 30 years on the medical treadmill of gaining family & friends approval, by accepting the labeling projections of a dozen psychiatrist’s, ‘need’ to make a living, set me on the path to a more mature self-regulation.

        Giving up the medications and developing a more mature self-regulation, in line with this notion of affect-regulation, involved giving up my normal sense of thought-controlled behaviors and turning my conscious awareness inwards to feel the sensations of muscular tensions & vascular pressures which help ‘energize’ my various states of being.

        A process which also involved acquiring the latest knowledge about my nervous system, and how such knowledge is effecting a return of ancient wisdom. Please take a look at:

        Yoga Therapy and Polyvagal Theory: The Convergence of Traditional Wisdom and Contemporary Neuroscience for Self-Regulation and Resilience.

        As a footnote, I have found that ‘psychosis’ is nature’s call to mature self-differentiation, as a need to face up to the difference between subjective & objective reality. Because, as Plato suggested, I feared to see myself as nothing but words.

        My heart, my brain, my lungs, etc. Which feels like a counter-transference phenomena of the modular nature of computer construction. Yet the word brain, is not the reality of my brain, the word is simply a sign, an image identifying label, like all the words of language are, as a medium of communication.

        Will all due respect to the highly educated; words are not reality, and only experience ‘reveals’ the ‘habituated’ nature of being human.

        I really appreciate your mature reflections on the ubiquitous nature of our self-denial.


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    • jclaude:

      Firstly, what I said to Rasellas about hallucinations was a response to a question posed in a previous article, and had nothing to do with this one. This article was only about all the newly invented, increasingly spreading “brain diseases” that started with the 1980 DSM, which I referred to in the article. Second, I want to clarify that tardive dyskinesias, a clearly horrible, incapacitating neurological syndrome of involuntary movements caused by “antipsychotic” drugs (chemical lobotomizers), is not what I was discussing in my response to Rasellas. It was tardive akithisias, something which is different and not so clear, as far as what it is and if it’s truly drug-induced.

      As far as my being offensive/dismissive in my response, I see it as completely opposite. I don’t view “mentally ill” people as different from “mentally healthy” people. I see us all as struggling to find ways to deal with the same unpleasant issues/experiences and the same needs, so we can all relate to each other. We’re all in the same boat. And I think all humans cope via “psychosis” – we all avoid reality and have “delusional” beliefs. The only difference is that some ways of habitually adapting are socially accepted and others aren’t. But I don’t judge. I don’t say that some coping styles are “better” than others – To each his own, as far as I am concerned. So trying to understand people in a way that isn’t pathologizing/dehumanizing, but is instead normalizing/humanizing, isn’t doing them a disservice at all. It’s being respectful, accepting, and connecting. I hope that Rasellas saw that this was my goal, even if we disagree somewhat with each other.


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  13. Three months ago, as I was getting really irritated by my doctors refusal to consider my plan to get back to work (2 years of sick leave and a mix of positive and negative medical or psychiatric expertises), my jaw fell when she commented : “I’m afraid you still seem irritable and that makes me think you are not quite apt ti go back to your job” ! I was not irritable, I was extremely irritated by her stubbornness, her persistant insistance I fly to file bankruptcy to get rid of my debts instead of considering me able to work and pay my ton of bills. She then really jammed my jaw, commenting the following”. And as far as I’m concerned, your debts could be the proof you are actually still bipolar. Honestly, I admit, I fantasized playing the sick role and acting like a real bipolar should : go out and party every day, make sick jukes, fool around for a while and juste have a hole lot of fun. WRF, I often felt guilty and shameful for just laughing and enjoying life once in a while. The sick identity was really getting on to me. Even when feeling high energy, doing my housework, shores and cooking was suspect. So, yes, Mr. Kelmenson, psychiatric diagnosis can bee very dehumanizing, invalidating and a very perverse mindset that taints every aspect of one’s existence. Even for the person diagnosed so, imagine how peers and other outsiders “read” emotions, behaviors and other signs of the alleged sickness afterward. I sometimes feel like a freak.

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    • Jclaude I live in a new town. I explain my inability to work to friends as fibromyalgia. I really have many of the symptoms of ME. That is more believable than bipolar. No mood swings or suicidal thoughts. Just a lot of physical pain and exhaustion.

      I still worry that I will come across as crazy to people. Weird I know. Due to physical weakness I cry too easily now. Tried to hold down a part time job at the Dollar Tree but wasn’t fast enough, broke down crying, gave too much change to a customer, and couldn’t do the housework needed to pass HUD inspections.

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  14. Lawrence, For once I am glad to hear this from a psychiatrist. You forgot something. Disability. Psych diagnosis is easy to obtain. You barely have to fake anything. Just walk into the presence of a psych and tell him/her your past diagnosis, and he’s likely to believe it, whether you had that dx or not. He’ll write it in your record and now, you’re guaranteed a basic income for the next seven years, called “SSDI.”

    What a great idea for those dissatisfied with their jobs, or those who are in a field where work is scarce. Great for women who want to depend on their husbands and need an excuse to stay home. Great way to get out of the workplace if you were sexually harassed on the job, without dealing with the mess of reporting anyone. Great for artists of all types, as it’s an income instead of having to get a “day job.”

    I am guilty of the above, most of them, which is why I bring it up. I didn’t know how I would get a job as a music composer, and at my previous jobs I had been sexually harassed. Disability worked great for me, excusing me from the workplace, until I was abused in a hospital. Everything turned upside down for me after that.

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      • Thanks, Julie, for confirming how sometimes, I would suggest rarely, personal motivations to opt out from life does happen. That people do fake problems in order to access a so-called “easy life”. But please don’t tarnish those of us for whom that accustation of fraudulent motivations does not stand. It’s bad enough, it really is, living a delimited life, full of discrimination and shame and lost hope. And being subjected to misplaced moral indignation.

        Here is exampled another of psychiatry’s ways of success: rationalise away the drug-induced damages to the brain. Blame it squarely on characterological impairments. If you have never suffered the torture that is akathisia, you really are utterly clueless. When you’re pacing and full of whole-being discomfort, you’re grinned at, dismissed, poo-poohed. Please don’t join in with this; please don’t encourage the good doctor to smirk it all away.

        “I was only talking about akathisia…”

        Yes, dyskinesia is bothersome, isn’t it. So palpable and impossible, finally, to brush under the carpet.

        Please don’t encourage the good doctor to brush akathisia under the carpet. It’s just so wrong. So, so wrong.

        And yes, for some unfortunate souls, and I’m one of them, the akathisia is lifelong and incorrectable. Not as intense as when the drugs are flowing through the veins, but an additional disablement, all the same.

        And so easy to tick-box away as syndromal of… just about anything really. So easy to huff at, and brush aside.

        There was a “me” before the antipsychotics, and there was a “me” after. I had problems of mood, psychosis, sleep and so on before, and I had those problems after.

        But what I didn’t have, and had never experienced before, was akathisia. No, I don’t think I will ever experience the intensity of it and for so long again. Eleven months. Eleven long, long months and as I say, if you have never experienced severe akathisa induced by an antipsychotic medication, you are utterly clueless.

        It’s why I wrote a radio play about it. And no-one will touch that play. Because a culture of disbelief has been established by the “experts”. Although the drama of the play, as a kind of revenge-fantasy against a psychiatrist, doesn’t meet the approval of the average clueless person. It’s all in all quite a good play. It has some good dialogue. But it’s when the akathisia kicks in, and the psychiatrist is pleading for it to end, that the drama really hits home.

        But as I say. Write these toxic opinion-pieces, grin away human suffering induced by psychiatric drugs, do that until the cows come home. But there are enough of us out here, in the real world, who know. We know. We know what you are doing too. We know how people get a kick out of it. We know who you are. And if there is a God, he knows too. And one day there will perhaps be a Judgement.

        Or maybe nothing will happen. And blinkered fools will go on doing what they do. And other clueless fools will buzz around them, clueless moths around an invidious flame.

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  15. At root – all conflict is an ‘identity crisis’ and the strategies for coping, managing or ‘escaping’ conflicted reality are all forms of dissociation, denial, via the narrative ‘identity’ held AGAINST ‘exposure’ or reliving the terror/trauma that the ‘mind’ is made to limit, check, and ‘control’.
    This is not so hard to write but very ‘deep’ in terms of acceptance. It makes no sense in the ‘world’ that our mind believes and experiences as physically real. No one can accept what they are unwilling or unready to accept, but some willingness and desire opens to a process over time of incremental shifts that I might call ‘awakening responsibility’ (NOT blame) for consciousness. It can also be seen as the recognition of choice where none had been (seen) before.
    The sense of (a wrong or unsupported) choice being associated with catastrophic outcomes is ‘escaped’ by denying and limiting consciousness so as to eradicate, cast out or separate off from the hated and feared.
    And so we redefine ‘reality’ to protect a sense of denied or hidden fear from exposure as the full belief it provides our sanity and survival (or acceptable conditions under which we will maintain some degree of bearable identity).
    Regardless the agencies apparently operating as persecutor, tempter or deceiver, the proclivity to listen, and take the bait, is something we can become aware of and thus bring into the realm of choice rather than being ‘victim’ to unconscious habits that are open to manipulative intent.
    I had a go at writing to illuminate the ‘human conditioning’ that we all tend to externalise and concretise as the human condition. I don’t expect it to ‘make sense in terms of an immediate situation requiring specific needs but to stir the recognition of a capacity in life for healing that the ‘mind’ cannot imagine because it is in a sense built on keeping separated from the feared and denied misidentification and thus unable to recognize a ‘choice’ made under confusion that can now be accepted and released for a truer alignment in your being.
    The nature of being is confused with the ‘story of me’ that I have identified within and am deeply attached to. If you feel you have to block or limit your consciousness at this time, take such steps as a blameless and honourable retreat within a desire to learn how to SEE better. This means accepting that the way I am seeing NOW is not reflecting the true of me and so can be enquired into, questioned or challenged (within myself).
    At some point an awareness of the pain or futility of persisting the old ways serves the determination to see in new ways. Meanings are not ‘built in’ or hardwired to your being but have served you in some way and may run on as a default until you change your mind about your mind. In that sense there is always some ‘payoff’ for our thoughts, beliefs and actions – but often ‘unconsciously held’.

    As I see it, the mind that is struggling alone under the belief it IS alone and must somehow cope, manage or control its reality-experience alone cannot OF ITSELF release its own error – and that healing always has a relational dimension that opens to a higher level of inclusion instead of a diminishment under exclusion. An example might be the decision to learn more of the nature of a ‘stuck’ predicament in the trust that one day you may be able to help others who also suffer it. If you look at that it is indeed already free – because it has released to fixation on me-my-problem and sees self in another (even though they are as yet unmet).
    Any moment of freedom shifts the personality structure in a reintegrative alignment – but this is by no means apparent to the mind that is still defaulting back into solving the problem as it defines it in the terms it demands or ‘fails’ to achieve.
    Your life is so much more than the framing of the ‘mind’ that seems to be your own. But the ‘More of who you are’ cannot fit into the framework (old wine bottles) of fear defined thinking – which includes much painted as positive in attempt to make real rather than share in the true.
    A true ‘control’ of the mind is in aligned purpose, not coercive manipulation. Of course fear can block the recognition and acceptance of true desire – and in a sense that is the role we cast it in while gaining power at some level from a sense of victimhood. I hold love as the true power and fear as a phishing ruse by which we suffer identity theft. Giving love and protection to the mind that escaped by ‘hiding’ and hiding that it is hiding (etc) is a mis-taken identity and a way by which to deny or sacrifice the true to false ‘gods’.
    Raging at false gods is still feeding them worthship. Refocussing in the true is always a realigning in a core integrity of being that then ‘tunes us’ more clearly present with what the need is and steps in the direction of it being truly met.
    All of us can only live from where we truly are. Anything else is some kind of mind-game that hasn’t really lived – so much as run in rehearsal mode. Accepting where we are now as a ‘working model’ rather than a fatalistic or fixed ‘diagnosis’ of self-judgement (with or without ‘external agencies involved) is the result of the release – at least momentarily – of the persistence of a self-rejection seeking vindication in ‘external’ terms.
    Is this true? Or meaningful? Or helpful to anyone? In any way?
    is there a true desire or accepted purpose of opening to honesty of being, coherency of being or appreciation and gratitude for being?
    Not that life has to fit my terminology or phrasing etc – but there has to be a matching resonance.
    A true helper is also a learner. The desire to serve or facilitate healing in others is a way to recognize and accept healing in ourselves. Now I am repeating myself 😉

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    • I had it badly on Haldol and Stellazine. Aside from some minor tics only fellow psych survivors could pick up on I escaped free from the disfiguring lip smacking and grimaces I saw other folks getting at day treatment. 🙁

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      • Please, let’s calm down. I may have triggered this acrimony and I am sorry if it is the case. But, for a personal anecdote that sum’s up my thoughts, let me tel you all this. My wife who I love deeply has MS since the beginning of our romance in the early 80s. In the first manifestations of her ordeal, as a young and innocent psychologist, when seeing that she suddenly lost 90 % of her eyesight in one eye, I concluded she was a typical hysteric (conversion disorder). But, I was in love and thought at then: I’m a psychologist so I can cope with that. Then, I found out about MS, and I had a hard time coping. But, 34 years latter, we are still together and even more than ever. My concluding remark : I was a fool, instructed by my mentors to see histrionic conversion anywhere. Fad of my time. Now, I know better, but it took 15-20 years to sink into the shrink I am. I don’t want to be perfect anymore : just good enough.

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  16. Read an article in Xojane by a woman claiming to be happy over her psychiatric label of “clinical depression.” Her main reason? She felt she needed an excuse for being unhappy. What?!!!

    She still went to work. Her SSRIs didn’t make much difference. But because she had a “brain disease” she could excuse herself for not being ecstatically happy 24/7. “Please excuse Janie for not smiling today. She has a mental illness. ~Dr. Smith”

    Why does our culture think everyone has to be an upbeat, thick-skinned extrovert? Putting a guilt trip on someone for not smiling all the time can cause extreme sadness called depression. We may encourage physical diversity, yet through psychiatry’s quixotic quest for “mental health” and a “normal brain” we only allow one kind of personality. Very extroverted, conscientious, low in openness, and low in sensitivity. (I prefer that term to neurotic.)

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      • Hi Lawrence, in relation to zombies again I’m afraid, for your information I was reading about sleep. They have discovered that adolescents body clocks change to keep them awake at night and wake up later. But school starts to early and many children are thus deprived of vital sleep, particularly REM. The consequences are irritable, moodier, distractible and unfocused children – These you will recognise as ‘syptoms’ of ADHD (and also core features of fear.) We could do with resetting school start times to 10am or later to assist developing minds apparently. When the schools of Edina Minnesota changed opening time from 7:25 to 8:30 SAT scores increased from 605 to 761!

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  17. I want to be honest too. I want to speak for me and my silenced brothers and sisters. And I want to be respected for it. This is what passed through my mind:

    “You [beep] [beep].” “You clueless [beep].” “You [beep] evil [beep].”

    In dismissing the torture of akathisia, you are all of those [beep] things. It’s as plain and as simple as that. If you can look upon the torture of another human being, and either not see it, or refuse to see it, you are a [beep], clueless, evil [beep] [beep]. And that is all there is to say.

    When I was being tortured, I wanted to ring the police. Hey, I wanted to tell them, I’m being tortured. I’m being abused. I’m being driven to suicide.

    There is no-one to ring. There is no-one to appeal to. So you either kill yourself or you endure it. You endure it, and if you can, you’re a mighty person. You’re a rock. And the people that are torturing you, they stand behind the mighty power of the state, the quivering, cowardly [beep]. They stand there, behind the might of the state, and they play big. They play strong. They play mighty.

    Those cowardly [beep] [beep]. Those snivelling, quivering, pathetic [beep] [beep] [beep].

    I’m non-violent. And when I was being tortured, I wanted to retaliate. But they’d taken that away from me too. The ability to defend myself. It took all my strength just to get out of bed, sloven down the stairs, and lay down on the sofa, riddled with discomfort, unrelenting discomfort, my entire sense of being under attack. Every second of the waking day. O how I would long for sleep. Sleep!

    I am mighty. I am strong. I endured your torture. I made it through. And I am here to testify. And I live for the day that a court is called. And people will gather and make their testimony known.

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    • The heart damage from years of malnutrition played a key role too. And she took a large amount of thyroid medicine when her thyroid was normal.

      Karen Carpenter died in the 70’s before pharma-psychiatry was such an item. A lot of psychiatrists talked to folks back then.

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  18. Eugenics and psychiatry.

    Churchill to Asquith, written in December 1910, stating that “
    “The unnatural and increasingly rapid growth of the Feeble-Minded and Insane classes, coupled as it is with a steady restriction among all the thrifty, energetic and superior stocks, constitutes a national and race danger which it is impossible to exaggerate.”
    In February 1911, Churchill spoke in the House of Commons about the need to introduce compulsory labour camps for “mental defectives.” As for “tramps and wastrels,” he said, “there ought to be proper Labour Colonies where they could be sent for considerable periods and made to realize their duty to the State.”:-

    And so in 1919 we had the mental deficiency bill- the 1930 mental treatment Act- the 1959 mental health Act-the 1983 mental health Act-the 2005 mental capacity Act. And now medical killings given the ok in UK courts.

    GET The idea!!!

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    • cris jones : I guess a little bit of the ides and would appreciate you give us more of your thoughts. But I am astonished, Churchill was a bipolar (and alcoholic) if my memory is right. Ironical that he looked down on the mentally afflicted, had he known he could of eventually been sent to a boot-camp or a labour camp.

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        • There’s still no such thing as “bipolar.” There’s no such thing as “mental illness.” Psychiatry prides itself on “diagnosing” major figures in world history as if that lends legitimacy to the so-called “profession.” Churchill initially bought into some of the lies about eugenics, but he was also instrumental in defeating a despot and a regime that actually implemented eugenics. That is something to keep in mind. Furthermore, Churchill had his reservations about psychiatry and psychiatrists:

          “I am sure it would be sensible to restrict as much as possible the work of these gentleman [i.e. psychiatrists], who are capable of doing an immense amount of harm with what may very easily degenerate into charlatanry. The tightest hand should be kept over them, and they should not be allowed to quarter themselves in large numbers upon the Fighting Services at the public expense. There are no doubt easily recognisable cases which may benefit from treatment of this kind, but it is wrong to disturb large numbers of healthy, normal men and women by asking the kind of odd questions in which the psychiatrists specialise. There are quite enough hangers-on and camp followers already.” 1942 – Sir Winston Churchill

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      • Churchill did suffer fro manic depression, the black dog as he called it. And it should come as no surprise he looked down on the afflicted, he was a colonialist, first of the Liberal variety and later a Conservative when he was largely responsible for saving the world from Nazism.

        In fact about then many people who relied on a mono crop diet where afflicted with the consequences of food processing which stripped their diets of key nutrients, in the South many of the poor relying on corn as mainstay found in consuming processed corn (which has a longer shelf life) that they developed Pellagra from B3 deficiency.

        And many concerned with the scandal of Psychiatry have a contemptuous view of the afflicted, even here, right on this thread, overlooking the many obstacles, hurdles and absence of resources we face. Actually there was a guy who was very concerned, saddened and angered at the 6 false messiah locked up in a psychiatric ward because he knew he was the true second coming and they where all deluded!

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        • hi jcllaud glad to assist .
          the information i have provided is not my own,its from an official source,
          weather or not Churchill was accused of being bipolar (a name borrowed from electronics)
          or drank too much has no relation to the pscheugenic belief system,which is under-way presently
          ps who cares what churchill said for the public,and how can one have a non existent medical condition ,maybe we should ask churchills dog.

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        • “he was largely responsible for saving the world from Nazism”.

          oh dear!
          I’d say there is as much to revise about Churchill as there is for the history of psychiatry.
          Nazism was ONE face of fascism – which is the nature of international corporate cartel. The mainstream narratives are a masking over, distorting or inventing of truths that serve power interests.
          Not the place to look for sanity…

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          • Correction, change ‘look for Sanity to ‘uncover (innate) Sanity’, because looking FOR something reinforces a belief in not having it and generate a crusade (salvation promised but never delivered) to fill a sense of lack or wrong that is not true. However when I accepted that I, or at least me as I thought I was – was insane – that WAS the awakening of a true sanity rather than an adaptation to an insane world/society. But my sense of insanity was of the world, not of life itself. So I felt to have released the world’s reversal, even if the habit of it persisted in triggering me to reaction. Now I knew it was a matter of awareness and discernment as to what I gave faith to. Where we choose to give the focus of our attention IS up to us – even if we seem to give that power to special hate or love ojects.

            Insanity = not in my right mind (or thinking and belief-reaction)
            Human society has two facets; true relational communication, and masking over the true as a result of fearing truth. The masking must believe it is sane and that truth is a threat to sanity (insane). So insanity is forever warring against true communication, and Sanity wars with nothing – that’s what distinguishes Sanity from anything defined in terms of division/hate/war/struggle.
            If your heart is an altar of devotion, the ideas you accept there are given reality for you – because that is what our reality experience is – the witnessing to what we accept in our heart. Does this condemn us? No – it frees me to re-cognise choices that no longer serve me, and make a better one in terms of who I NOW accept myself to be.
            The idea of possessing ideas (identifying within them) is the opening to the experience of being possessed by – or subject to them. Experience is NOT something that is done to us or ‘just happens’ but something we set up in ways we mostly do not realize. Not least as the attempt to GET experience to fill a sense of lack (that is not the true of our being – whatever we think and perceive). Possession is also the setting up for dispossession. I invite curiosity – not blame reaction.

            #To Rachel777
            The idea of keeping what I want and getting rid of what I don’t want – as if to create some sort of perfection and escape from the mess that does not fit my ‘world’ is called judgement. To a large extent we don’t have the power or truly the will to actually act this out directly – though it leaks out all the time – but if we had the power, we may find we used it and behaved like most anyone else who is corrupted by their judgement-self being tempted with power.

            The scientific model of genetic inheritance was fitted to weaponise this sense of judgement in those who had power to influence thought and policy. ‘Get rid of undesirables’ (scapegoats) or ‘offences to one’s ideal (fantasy).

            The psyop of associating all guilt to Hitler (and Nazism) included the ‘moral outrage’ at eugenics. And so it rebranded, went underground and operates through a multitude of seemingly benign fronting organisations.
            Blind identification (worship) of system-control as rational cannot SEE or know what it does – because it only sees what its mind dictates and permits. It wont see genocide but a necessary duty to ‘save the future’ from the evils of overpopulation. And yet always to prefer ‘my genes or judgements” by denying rivals.

            I correct this in myself to seeing thoughts as generative and choose to attract, accept and act from thoughts that I feel whole (joy) in. For whatever we accept in our heart – goes forth and mutiplies. I cannot judge another but I judge myself – and who am I to presume what is or is not appropriate for another’s unfolding of their life in its timing. So I take responsibility for what is mine – and release the mad idea I can or should change ‘the world’ which is always in any case changing – even if certain core themes re-enact as if ‘the record is stuck’.

            Epigenetics is the correction of a lot of magical thinking about genes. Just as neuroplasticity corrects the notion of a hard wired brain (another version of uncorrectable sin masked in ‘science’). Fear tends to speak the first ‘definition’ as a weapon or market for a sense of lack – but love corrects to make a structure (world) through which to embrace life rather than protect a sense offalsely invested lack. Of course this is at times terrifying – but in a different CONTEXT than struggling to survive alone.

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          • Alternatively, when people stop believing they turn to anything or everything, not nothing then slowly and only rarely. Which leads to a sense of emptiness, a trembling fear, a profound terror and confusion. Even people with enemies or other adversities still get paranoid, in fact having enemies or adversity would seem to be a pre-requisite. Or as some analysts like to joke sometimes, insight and/or catharsis only lead to why we do what we do to get us into trouble. What to do about it is another story!

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        • “Moran himself leaned strongly in the direction of his patient being “by nature very apprehensive”; close associates of Churchill have disputed the idea that apprehension was a defining feature of Churchill’s temperament, although they readily concede that he was noticeably worried and anxious about some matters, especially in the buildup to important speeches in the House of Commons and elsewhere. Churchill himself all but openly acknowledged in his book Painting as a Pastime that he was prey to the “worry and mental overstrain [experienced] by persons who, over prolonged periods, have to bear exceptional responsibilities and discharge duties upon a very large scale”. The fact that he found a remedy in painting and bricklaying is a strong indicator that the condition as he defined it did not amount to ‘clinical depression’, certainly not as that term was understood during the lifetimes of himself and Lord Moran.”

          As fond as the “mental health” movement is of turning celebrated public figures, after the fact, into examples of “sufferers” who made good, I tend to think had he been caught as such in reality, his career would have been effectively kaput. So much for Churchill’s bogus bipolar.

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    • There really are sweatshops (CALLED sheltered workshops) where folks labeled SMI are put to work making seed packets for less than a dollar an hour. The owners are millionaires who get “mental health” centers to recommend these jobs as therapeutic for patients. The argument is by only earning $100 a month you can keep your benefits.

      I worked in one after graduating from college. Ugh.

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    • The popularity of Eugenics in the first half of the twentieth century is still a relatively untold scandal. It wasn’t until the NAZIs incorporated it into their final solution to the Jewish problem that Eugenics became a dirty word. After all, they borrowed their Eugenic practices from the USA, and extended them all the way from the sterilization practiced there to euthanasia and extermination.

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      • The popularity of eugenics is still manifest in the 21st century. I notice the recurrent race/iq spat has resurfaced again as it does in the popular media every 20 years or so. Pointless and nasty. And all those twin studies done or funded by professed eugenisists still have unquestioned authority in ‘research’ assuming the genetic ’causes’ of ‘mental illness’ despite there methodology, analysis and reporting having been totally critical many times going back many years.

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      • Agreed. Even in 1941, there were many supporters among American psychiatry for euthanizing the so-called “mentally ill”. Just look at the keynote address for the 1941 meeting of the American Psychiatric Association for proof. And in 1942, an anonymous editorial by two authors supported this same idea in the APA’s Journal. This isn’t that long ago, all things considered. We just didn’t refer to the “mentally ill” as “useless eaters” like they did in Germany.

        There were many people in this country who supported Hitler and his proposals when he first came to power and many well-known foundations that still exist today supported eugenics. One interesting note; when Hitler’s speeches were translated on American radio they were not accurate in stating what Hitler was saying. A friend of mine had a German American grandmother (third generation American citizen who spoke and understood German) who said that it was strange to hear Hitler screaming a lot of very scary things while the translator was not reporting any of the scary things at all. Was this the beginnings of fake news?

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      • “Jewish problem”

        Churchill was the last Western statesman that wrote or spoke publicly of the great dangers of the ‘international Jew’ – and he was speaking of organised power that drew on a broad spectrum of influence to achieve its goals by stealth.

        Soon afterwards he not only stopped saying anything like it but enacted or supported the Zionist cause – but he did – (I think it was him) insist on adding a clause to the Balfour agreement in which Palestinians were at least supposed to be give equal rights or protection – at which there was much anger.
        My sense is that he was compromised or scared off in some way.

        We live in times that love to take great offence at selected sins and then demand vengeance. The emergence of rational science proceeds apace to displace and undermine the traditional religious framework – that was of course corrupted by supporting and extending the power of the establishment. But it also held for a real relationship – both within as with our fellow beings. And despite the distortions around a core illumination, there is wisdom that rational thinking is defacto the blocking of. In part to escape and leave behind a horror – not just of what the Church became and did – but of the human condition – (I usually call this the human conditioning).
        Redefining reality in antipsychic terms makes the psych a denial shadow to be ridiculed, smeared, denied a voice, stamped out, or medically managed…

        In a sense shutting out the demons also shuts out the divine and sees both as the same threat – which teaches and is inducted as a profound distrust of psychic experience (there is no other – but concepts seem to be limiting life to a manageable trickle. But of course Life leaks through even the best defences and we can be undone from within in ways we do not expect. But we have little of a wisdom tradition or culture of support for the deeper unfolding and integration of what I simplify under ‘psychic’ emergence – or indeed psychic suppression. Instead we distantiate with terms like ‘psychological’. The language is used to separate from and protect the separation. Fear does not set out to be evil, so much as phishing an identity theft that brings on every kind of negative outcome.

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  19. “The atrocious system of poisoning by poisons so slow in their operation as to make the victim appear, to ordinary observers, as if dying from a gradual decay of nature, has been practised in all ages. […] Early in the sixteenth century the crime seems to have gradually increased, till in the seventeenth it spread over Europe like a pestilence. It was often exercised by pretended witches and sorcerers, and finally became a branch of education amongst all who laid any claim to magical and supernatural arts. In the twenty-first year of Henry VIII. an act was passed rendering it high treason. Those found guilty of it were to be boiled to death.”

    from The Slow Poisoners in Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds

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    • I read that Napoleon (and no doubt others of the same persuasion) took a small daily dose of mercury as a defence against being poisoned – in the belief the body’s defences have been prepared and raised.
      This adds another vector for the madness of the paranoid – and I say this in the knowing that people in positions of power are targets for murder.
      But the above quote applies to Pharma – for the fox huns the chicken coop.
      I also note that any crime – especially if freshly associated with outrage – becomes the false accusation by which to – for example stamp out the more feminine approaches to the healing arts and make the masculine ‘heroic’ intervention or ‘powerful’ purges official – and protected against ‘witchery’.

      The media operates another form of slow poison – it isn’t all ‘physical’

      Crappy (loveless) thinking is a slow poison.

      I prefer the idea of Sourcery as yielding to Source rather than hacking into the template with manipulative intent – regardless any good intention. A biodynamic cranial sacral approach is to approach the field of the one who seeks help, wait for permission/resonance of our fields and BE With – as a quality of connected presence that only moves to adjust or rebalance as truly moved – and in any case extends the full trust of the being to rebalance itself within the reconnected activation of its own direct communication with Source-Nature.

      Yielding illusions to truth is the last thing anyone would consider when – in one way or another – they can get identity from fighting or ‘managing’ the symptoms of a misidentification bearing ill fruit. And I don’t blame illness on the victim – but hold for the capacity of choice that is a freedom of being and not a victim.

      As for eugenics, it simply made sense to a starkly rational system-view of ‘stock health’. Those in power use it to back their version of who is ‘unworthy’ or ‘invalid’ but how many consider that they meet in others according to what they judge (label)? And where does this judgement come from but oneself. The attempt to hate others and kill them as a magical way to rid yourself of your ‘sins’ is very old and within our Template until we see it and stop doing it.

      quote//: The Greek pharmakoi, singular pharmakos, refers to victims who were ritually beaten, driven out of cities, and killed, for example, by being forced over the edge of a precipice. The word pharmakos, designating a person who is selected as a ritual victim, is related to pharmakon, which means both “remedy” and “poison,” depending on the context. In the story of the horrible miracle of Apollonius, the beggar is a pharmakos, a kind of ritual victim. Apollonius points to him as the demon causing the plague (he is the source of pollution or poison), but his lynching restores the well being of Ephesus (he becomes the remedy for the crisis). — Trans.”
      The Greek pharmakoi ~ René Girard, I See Satan Fall Like Lightning
      When I say magic, I mean that the guilt is not really got rid of, but hidden in the ‘dead’ or unconsciousness. It remains fully active as ‘shadow power’ working through ‘good intentions’ and other blind spots.
      If we temporarily need ‘magic solutions’ to allay fear, then to withhold or deny them may result in chaotic regression and an inability to learn, so in that sense – and in that living culture of realisation, shutting off symptoms can allow a period of reintegration at the level that CAN be accepted – so as to then take that ‘leading edge’ into the arena of what was previously overwhelming. But then one isn’t the same persona and doesn’t meet the same conditions.

      In a dream, all of the characters are drawn from our own mind. But none of them are ‘real’ in the sense of defining and confining who and what we are because we are also the casting manager. Recognising my ‘killer’ was within me in this way shifted everything, such that I learned (accepted) something I could not have learned otherwise. I say ‘killer’ because that was the effect I felt and an intent to push me off the planet – however in truth this an had his own perceptions, rationale and justifications. Releasing the personal investment in grievance made the actuality more obvious and a belonging (to life and planet) that simply is.

      So in that sense my intent to bring Spirit into a mad world was backwards – even if it brought a lot of joy – because I was still coming from a place of being denied and seeking validation. So what if the way I see the world is my thinking, and my thinking is a defence or attempt to vindicate itself at cost of true?

      So I can see a mad world but desist from reacting from those thoughts/perceptions and open or reach for another way to see. Because I want to see the witnesses for peace and sanity where love abides. This is not a condition in the future, but a willingness in the now. Looking straight at the ‘demons’ is the way to break the spell of hiding or running away. But once free, to look past them to what they were made to hide, is the giving of attention to what you truly recognize and resonate with in freedom. Grievance says you cant be happy until conditions are met – and seeks those conditions as IF happiness or fulfilment is thus gotten.
      That is normal for many – but it isn’t sane, no matter how many agree to engage it.

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      • @ binra

        Thanks for taking the time to reply. I had to work hard to try and understand you but the effort paid off.

        Surely the act of going to source would be “sourcing” and the person that did it would be a “sourcer”?

        People do find answers in conducting supernatural rituals or forming supernatural interpretations of their subjectivity as so long, as you suggest, these pursuits and frameworks lead ultimately to love then I have no objection. Personally I’m able to accommodate mystery, the unknown, which for me works in the sense of what might be thought of as supernatural experiences by some I think of as glitches. That somehow the dreamscape is leaking into waking life. Where we and others, even Dr Kelmenson, would agree, is that there can be something to learn from that glitch. So at least we have some common ground, even if what we would draw from such learning are miles apart.

        Although contemplating someone elses’ psychosis is like attempting to contemplate an abstract expressionist painting that you haven’t seen and which this other person has seen some time ago and they’re describing it to you verbally from memory. One day there will be quantum organic brain enhancement packs that slot into a universal port in the brain stem, and psychosis will be gameified.

        Imagine how much would be lost if Pollock’s No.5, 1948 was only available to us via a text or word of mouth. Similarly dream-recall narratives are flawed in many ways. The point about an hallucination is that something reveals itself to one person and no-one else is able to see it. They continue to not be able to see it when the person that saw it — or experienced it — attempts to describe it to them. Now they are imagining themselves into themselves driven by the imagery induced by the narrator of an hallucinatory experience.

        All that to me is what magic is, and what sorcery is. Suggestive and to some degree hypnotic. Some magic is needed to hold societies together. When the magic fails things fall apart. For some, breaking bad spells or renewing failing ones becomes the whole reason for their existence.

        I think you are bang on about the ritual cleansing through the pharmakoi.

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        • If someone has taken on the disturbances of their disturbed family, they are not the least disturbed, they are the most disturbed. It is upon relinquishing themselves through selfhood, away from the family, aka individuation, that they stand any hope of breaking those spells. Some spells, it is true, are broken simply through absence. However, as you know, a person’s presence can be strongly felt, or even felt more strongly, in their absence, and such that magic can be performed as group ritual and through spellbinding. And every sect chases its escaped pharmakoi. In their ritualised rule-set the pharmakoi is the forbidden seed and the forbidden seed-bed. It must not be let loose.

          The lifelong mark of Cain, he that took a Neanderthalis for a bride.

          Laing suggested the scapegoat/pharmakoi was the least disturbed. In others words they were the totemic conduit of a broader hope. And so a wider eye should be cast upon a social situation whenever madness is encountered. That especially in young people, there is an intentional drama, or spellbinding, . And it takes some mettle to confront it with an eye for postfreudian social dynamics. And in looking anywhere for intentionality you’ll also find conflictual postfreudian/existential/zen narratives. Pick ‘n mix. And it’s getting to the bottom of the assorted mayhem that can form a redemptive hand to guide a person away from spellbound bewilderment aka psychosis. Laing then was a magician, interpreter and inducer of waking daydreams, and in his zeal he sought out ever-greater spells to perform on people — alike Aleister Crowley’s Boleskine Bay cottage performances at Loch Ness — and so inevitably the LSD, and the gallons of whiskey, and the intensity of his confusion, and his alluring narcissism aka hypnotism. And now that London house is a sacred place. It has monks and pilgrims, and stories of the magician, whose presence fails in his absence.

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    • A great way to off a husband you disliked. Get a carton of cigarettes. Soak them for a couple hours i enough water to cover them. Add a few tablespoons of this to his coffee every morning. The beans would conceal the flavor. This really would work if he were a smoker.

      Great idea for a murder mystery. Not recommending anyone do this!

      Got the idea from Shirley Jackson.

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  20. The British citizens thanked Churchill for his part in winning the War, gladly but thankfully voted the then socialist Labour Party to win the peace, dismantling the empire, setting up the NHS, bebuilding Britain including massive house building for ex troops (exposed to The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist in the trenches) their wives and nationalising the commanding heights of the economy. Churchill accepted all this to later regain power, promising to build even more homes.

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    • Before Churchill the Empire ran a convincing experiment in behavioural genetics, they did not mean to but they did. It was called the policy of Transportation wherein many, very many people with proven behavioural difficulties, usually time inside, where transported to Australia. Did these people prove to be recidivism offenders and begat generations of ner-do-wells?
      Eh, No, case proved it would seem, but many, even great admirers of Empire still cling on beliefs in hereditary, breeding and eugenics. The good news is that they are in the minority with, for instance, some 97% of ‘patients’ believing their psychic disturbances are rooted in environmental adversities etc. Even a majority of psychiatrists give a role to such and aren’t strict bio-determinists but then strict social determinism is not viable as resources balance adversity and our agency in determining responses is a vital lever in determining ‘outcomes’.

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        • Sorry for delay in getting back to you, Jclaude. Was a bit blue. Not sure how to elaborate or if an actual study has been completed. I’m a slow typer and all that.

          But Penal colonies where established in New South Wales, Van Diemens Land and other parts of the continent now called Australia. The great majority of the settlers where thus convicts Transported, as punishment, to those Lands in the first half of the C19th. It would be a personal observation of mine that it stands to reason that if ‘offending’ behaviour was coded in the genes then this would be detectable by the behaviours of present day Australians as they would have these genes over represented in their genome. This appears not to be the case however – case closed!

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          • Under unfeeling and unjust power one does not have to be an ‘offender’ to be processed by its ‘justice’ system.
            However, if a large number were from the lower classes they would be free of a lot of the attitudes of upper class disdain and in their terms tell it like it is instead of hiding in sophistication, airs and graces – and a presumption of divine entitlement. I feel a sense of this generally in Ozzies and a corresponding inverted snobbery.
            Epigenics or indeed Family Constellation work may suggest inherited tendencies or for unhealed family conflicts to resurface in the river as it flows. Does not the child in an unselfconscious love often take on the intent and attempt to heal or make happy for sadness or loss of love to conflict? Whose issues are we ‘working out’ – and yet they are part of our fate – or if you prefer the material or pallet through which we unfold our life. I hold that what we accept and align in NOW is the key and not the past excepting it comes into our Now and calls for attention, acceptance or release. Children can be very insistent, persistent and demanding to find acceptance and attention when they feel uncertain, fearful or insecure. The WAY they do it often adds to a sense of either interrupting a joy or adding yet another demand to a sense of strain. jealousy or a reaction to the vibrational state of an unhappiness. regardless biology catching up, it is simply evident that we are energetically conditioned and yet we don’t all pick up all of whatever we are exposed to – and I feel this is because at a deeper level than the personality there is a vibrational fit that matches what we pick up and make our own or indeed make as part of our own masking armour for the ‘world’ that it brings with it.
            G’Day mate!

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      • The automated forum “checker” says I’m repeating myself, but I’m sur not. So I ty once more. OMG ! Your post seems so interesting, but truncated and hard to follow. Maybe you tried too much to be succinct. Please elaborate …

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      • That’s the story ‘we’ tell ourselves. the politician MAY be a human being with a genuine change of heart. But is also professionally employed in the art of presentation and persuasion. As he spent so much time in the mirror with oratory practice I sense he was attuned to image and effect as part of his strategy of effecting outcomes.
        I read that Brit Gov Corp – decided not to support the significant oppositions to Nazism within Germany leading up to war because the powerful German based Industrial lobby was more of a threat to Brit Gov Corp power in the longer term – and so the setting of Germany and Russia into mutual destruction was the objective.
        Another prime objective was to bring the USA into the war by any means possible.
        All of the ‘moral’ espousals are PR excepting the courage and integrity of those who actually embodied a solidarity of spirit in living through it – or dying. Germany and Europe was remodelled. As with WW1 Germany was assigned the maximal war guilt – and every and anything that could be presented and made more effective in doing this was brought to bear. This assigned the Eugenic intent specially to Hitler and nazism – while rebranding it internationally to seem to have stopped, and adopting a different tack. Where eugenics sought to cull or neuter the ‘unfit’ the new way worked the degradation of the population towards powerlessness, by engineering self-destructive habits and protective new medical discoveries. This is more the mind of management and control of sickness by degrees – like boiling a frog slowly.
        One way it works is to subvert any true service to operate instead as a form of control. All services thus become part of a network of influence that works against true relationship – while presented as a protective necessity to a growing dependence.

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  21. Bleuler ,still seen by psychiatry as a great pioneer of diagnosis .

    The eugenic sterilization of persons diagnosed with (and viewed as predisposed to) schizophrenia was advocated by Bleuler.[He argued that racial deterioration would result from the propagation of mental and physical cripples in his Textbook of Psychiatry:.

    The more severely burdened should not propagate themselves… . If we do nothing but make mental and physical cripples capable of propagating themselves, and the healthy stocks have to limit the number of their children because so much has to be done for the maintenance of others, if natural selection is generally suppressed, then unless we will get new measures our race must rapidly deteriorate.

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  22. In this article Dr. Kelmenson, (who should know better,) engages in the time-honored tradition of victim blaming. He suggests that patients adhere to their labels in order to evade personal responsibility in life.

    I became a slave to the mental health system in 1971, at age 18. In the interval years between then and their deaths, members of my family insisted that I was nothing but an irresponsible lout. They were thoroughly oblivious to the tortured realities of my life as a mental patient, and had no capability of understanding the nuances of that quagmire. They went thusly to their graves.

    Patients are never upwardly mobile or productive because the mental illness Establishment, (through the use of the invidious mechanism of stigma,) never ALLOWS them to accomplish anything, or to stand on their own two feet. This emerging and foolish, counterproductive proclivity amongst antipsychiatry activists to blame the victim, disturbs me greatly.

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    • In your case this would not apply. But for every one of us escaping or trying to escape the system there are dozens if not hundreds of people desperate for drugs and MI labels. Check the net and you’ll see. Bipolar burble, NAMI, Healthy Place, the list goes on indefinitely.

      Many of these sought out the “services” psychiatry offers and fly into hideous rages if you suggest they might be sane and deny that their shrink is a messiah and his drugs are the elixir of life. These are whom Dr. K is describing.

      “What? I’m not crazy!!! Insults like that I take from no one! Grrrr!!!”

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      • Rachel777: Thank you so much for clarifying for me what Dr. K was talking about in his original article. I understand precisely what you’re talking about. Incidentally, you both might be interested in reading my autobiography, Ex-Inmate In Exile. It’s available from Thanks, again.

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    • “patients adhere to their labels in order to evade personal responsibility in life.”
      I don’t know if this can be considered victim blaming. Maybe, but in my mind, taking total responsibility in life can be very hazardous and at times impossible to sustain. I guess it depends on one’s perspective. Be it objective and without pejorative assumptions or on moral grounds. I recall countless times i heard “critical parental or authority figures scolding and shaming weakened or vulnerable people by commanding to be “more” responsible.

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      • There’s so little positive about being labeled “severely mentally ill” that it really is tempting to act out and say, “Hey, my broken brain made me do t. Don’t blame me.”

        This only makes things worse for the one assigned the “Mad” role in the end.

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      • Jclaude If responsibility is always now, for your now experience, in recognition of choices made and freedom to make new ones then it has nothing to do with blame and shame.
        My sense is that in taking on responsibilities that are not ours, we set up to fail, and open the sense of inadequacy, self-doubt, guilt and unworthiness – etc.
        We also become trapped in a futility that effectively operates the NOT accepting of our primary responsibility – which is the accept the truth of our being – which is love – but of a different order to the manipulative substitutes for love that do not heal.
        So in a sense everyone in a world of fear and hiding is a cover story over ‘evading responsibility’ in the constructing and reinforcement of identity.
        I have seen in myself how the urge to escape a terrible sense of self-wrongness (understatement) felt need and compulsion to project it away from ‘self’ onto others and world, to life and to a past that was fixed in judgement. But because I was ware of it, I found I did not WANT to accept such a choice. That put me in a different place where victimhood came up – but I couldn’t really buy it, use it or believe it – but that doesn’t mean I did not have a lot of negative experience and conflict around it. It did mean I wanted to find some other way with it and Knew that I did Not want to be put back in the identity that has broken – and yet opened a true life even if I was too afraid to embrace and share it. I had to learn to not get in my own way.
        What else is there in life but to live what you have and grow it in a way that has a true appreciation. To give it is to have it. To believe you don’t have it is to believe you have nothing to give or a negative payload! I see most people have voices in the head called ‘thinking’ that they accept and follow as if it speaks their truth – when it speak an idea of protection for an idea of a self.
        There is of course bollox about self-worth – as if it can be added or applied. I say it is something to uncover by no longer accepting the victim-role that a negatively defined sense of self does. And leaving that open and abiding there. The attempt to make ourself in image blocks the recognition of who we know and accept ourself to be.
        True responsibility rises from freedom to be yourself and that is from no longer blaming and shaming or setting up to fail.
        The use of word-meanings is a kind of magic. So undoing the spell of a distortion redeems the true meaning beneath.
        I feel that there is a need to be with the true and integrate it before stepping out openly. False confidences play into self deceits. The need to know is not a head thing, but a heart thing that the head has to become the alignment within.
        To run ahead of ourself is to lose our support and protection. And then to be ‘taken in’ by substitutes. Nothing can substitute for your heart’s knowing or ever truly will.
        But while we listen and react to substitutes for true we see and react accordingly.
        To accept responsibility for your own choices is to restore freedom to make new choices. The blame and shame of personal and social manipulations works to block this and yet this need not be. If you truly want something, you will attract and uncover the steps to uncover it or attract it to you. But if you focus on what you do not want as if to evade or escape it, you attract it while believing you are covering it over. And so have the experience you do NOT want as if done to you.
        I see that as the jesus saying ‘resist ye not evil’. He doesn’t mean succumb to guilt and fear but rather to recognize a misalignment, withdraw support for it and seek realignment in our being – instead of our thinking or social identity.

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        • I would ask those wont to demand ‘personal responsibility’, well ‘Responsibility for what?’ Having, obviously, deliberated long and hard the answer was that they come up with nothing!

          We can only accept responsibility for that within our powers. It’s good to know our personal power, reflect on how best to exercise them and learn to counter threats and overcome adversities.

          However the leader of a health service was caught splitting hairs over this distinction. He tried arguing that just because he was responsible for running the service he should not be held to be to blame for a scandal in the running of the service,?! Y

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          • No NOT ‘demand’ and NOT ‘blame’. Reclaiming the natural responsibility of our own consciousness is release from false demands, false responsibilities and the destructive and obstructive ‘blame’.

            So in this post I invite responsibility for truly knowing and owning the meaning of the word we accept and share by using it to communicate or as a basis from which to act.

            Much of what we run on as ‘meanings’ are inherited, acquired or induced prior to the development of the capacity to consciously choose.

            Fear of being denied, rejected, and considered false or mad can find comfort under diagnosis of social recognition. But this works throughout a society of masking over such fears and is not particular to those whose capacity to keep the ‘mask’ together has diminished or become so conflicted as to open into reality confusion.

            Our personality structure can be seen in many different ways and at different levels, and is both necessary for the participation in our life in the world, and yet it is not who we are so much as the consciousness through which we experience. Identifying in the self-image is part of our development – but to become exclusively locked in is the result of trying to coerce or escape it. Who you experience yourself to be is who you think you are – where much of such thought is hidden or runs as invisible habit. Along with this is a world of insecure people trying to get self-validation by using others – ie manipulative behaviours of the unhealed healers. Yet any moment shared willingness for healing is always a mutual and shared benefit.
            But as you all know, many ‘professional’ helpers want to make you fit their model, and many seeking help want to keep their identity unchanged and make the ‘bad stuff’ go away – or get away from it asap.
            Whatever you/we choose, it is wise to stand in that choice and learn or grow or open whatever it has to give us – even if it is the recognition of a ‘mistake’. No blame – but the basis for a more aligned choice.

            Blame is a habit to notice and nip in the bud – in desire and willingness to find a less self (and other) destructive way of seeing and being. And let the hatred and the hurts beneath become an arena in which to accept and embrace that we feel what we feel, without allowing it to trigger us to harmful reaction. All feelings are the results of underlying self-definitions and there is more hatred in our heart than ‘nice people’ are willing to own or grow responsibility for – and so it gets pushed down and targeted at the feared, the ‘different’ the ‘threatening’.

            It is within your capacity to accept responsibility for your own thought at the level you are currently aware and thereby grow in awareness that aligns naturally with choosing well in terms of who you are the unfolding or discovering of. This is what I would ‘live’ to people as a recognition of worth instead of a ‘sympathy’ of confirmation as a ‘case’ or victim any other separating device.
            Only if they show willingness is there the way to invite or prompt for the recognition of cause and effect at the level of their own choices and their power to choose differently – and find support in living it.

            The way we currently frame our reality may disempower us in the futility of trying to ‘overcome’ or ‘escape’ adversity or hated and feared outcomes. While a mind is in ‘survival’ or ‘war’ mode, there is very little free attention. Fear also switches the body-mind chemistry to the ‘sympathetic nervous response’ and persistent looping of fear-chemistry undermines the balancing and regenerating parasympathetic response. Functional breakdown that can be address by breaking the ‘loop’ and restoring conditions of nutient rather than toxin. This also applies to our thinking – and the only time we ever have to make a choice is now – with who and what we have at hand. Perhaps choosing to breathe in a way that is connected and simply present as a way of re-membering ourself in the present. I just came up with that – but you can come up with anything that works to take attention from conflicted thinking, and rest in willingness of simply being. A little thing persisted in may prove greater than a heroic thing that ‘almost gets there’ – but dumps you back in a confirmation that you ‘need to get somewhere else’ and fail, are invalid, inadequate, or lack power. Into this thinking believed or indulged come fantasy ‘answers’ that reinforce the ‘victim’ while promising to protect or empower it. This is the ‘negative economy’ that runs the world of insanity un-owned.
            Note that I found owning my own insane thinking was the instant of recognizing I had choice and not a blame shame of self denying judgement. Why? Because Life was in me and I was unwilling to deny it to ‘fit into an insane world’ – yet of course I had to find a way to live with and find balance as part of ‘waking up’. It isn’t really an insane world so much as ‘insane’ or self-conflicted thinking that operates a mis-interpretive layer of identification. Just as wounds heal naturally given the conditions for healing, so is there a re-integrative movement in being that we can tune into and align in, one step at a time – as willingness allows. Perhaps we WANT our grievance – and perhaps we thus undertake a ‘journey with that in which we may come to see that we hurt ourselves and lose the joy of living this day – as our everyday – if only in the growing of the willingness to reclaim moments of a directly felt connection as part of releasing a deep sense of disconnect that is necessarily associated with a sense of split off or conflicted struggle. I say direct connection because we are already habituated to seek a substitute in outer forms and conditions that can take us further from who we are while seeming to get what we need.

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    • It helps to be emancipated from the so-called mental health system. Yes, there is, more than victim blaming, victim making, in the system, but moving on means dispensing with the “victim” role, too.

      The (mental illness establishment) system is a ridiculous waste of money, lives, and time, and we need to get rid of it.

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  23. Victimism is the use of pain, loss, wounds, grievance to get something. When we recognize this in ourself and choose not to use it, we become free of those who use it to manipulate us.
    I see sympathy as destructive in the confirming of error, sickness, or blame, but compassion as supportive in the acceptance and of what is as a basis from which to make new choices from a sense of being more truly aligned in conscious desire and a shared sense of worth. Getting ‘worth’ from sympathy is not who we innately are. You are not a role, nor a label. When confronted with experience that they cannot really BE WITH, others may seek to ‘help’ as a way to get you to play a role by which they feel better. If they really knew what they do they would be able to BE WITH as a simple honesty without masking over.
    Fear drives the mask and the defence of it at expense of recognizing the true need – for at root the need is for the love of an unconditional acceptance – and not for blame management.

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  24. I totally agree with almost everything in this essay, and people wanting documentation of the points in the essay will find the inside story of how this came to be in They Say You’re Crazy: How the World’s Most Powerful Psychiatrists Decide Who’s Normal As far as I know, I am the only person who actually served on a DSM Task Force (two of its committees under Allen Frances’ DSM-IV reign), resigned on moral, ethical, and professional grounds, then wrote about what I learned about how the DSM is put together, how science is ignored, distorted, or lied about, and how the harm it causes is concealed by the folks who publish the manual. One correction: It’s mentioned in the essay that Allen Frances has acknowledged that his edition of the DSM led to some epidemics of diagnosis, but it is crucial for people to understand that: (1) he named only three diagnostic categories that he said were the subject of epidemics; (2) he elsewhere has said repeatedly (I have the documentation if anyone wants it) that the process he oversaw of creating his DSM-IV was “scrupulously scientific,” when that is patently absurd (as I documented in the above named book); (3)in a book he wrote, he first says he is about to issue a mea culpa, then mentions the epidemics of the three categories, then says that he and his DSM colleagues could not possibly have foreseen these epidemics, and then goes on to blame for the epidemics just about everyone and every entity except himself and his colleagues; and (4) he continues to this day to talk out of both sides of his mouth about psych diagnosis, having said at one point that psych diagnosis “is bullshit,” as quoted by Gary Greenberg in an article in Wired, which Greenberg says in his Book of Woe led Frances to berate him for having quoted Frances accurately about that … and then he currently goes on to say that people who have “serious mental illnesses” are being under diagnosed and underrated. So please beware of simply citing without context his acknowledgement of a tiny number of diagnosis epidemics.

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    • I agree, Paula. As example, for decades I was hoping that Binge Eating Disorder would be recognized in the DSM and I had no clue why it wasn’t. Now, suddenly, in 2013, it was! Why? Because they had a name brand drug for it. Suddenly, we have an epidemic of BED, as I describe in my article here in MIA, The article, by the way, drew much controversy. It’s not that more than ever are binge eating. It’s that now, we are valid, bona fide diseased so now folks can go to “doctors” and not be called “fakers.” Trust me, for decades we were called by other diseases such as borderline or anxious or anything but! Now they’ll give us dangerous, expensive pills that might kill us. (If you want speed, which does indeed reduce your appetite, ask any anorexic, we’ve known about coffee for decades now. It is far safer than Vyvanse, if you’re gonna compare!) Either way, hocus pocus, diagnosis! Suddenly, we got real! Suddenly, it’s a disease, but I don’t think it means we suffer any more or less. It’s just that now you can make an appointment with a doctor for it and have a valid-sounding “mental disease.” You can get hooked on therapy even worse. Which some find “useful” I suppose.

      I suggest the following. Stop dieting! Know that binge eating is the natural, normal consequence of restrictive eating. It’s not abnormal to react that way after anorexia. It’s not a mental disease. After starvation, whether you chose to starve or not, it’s very normal to go on binges for years, even a decade before your body gets used to food being plentiful again. It does go away, and it doesn’t need therapizing, pills, nor “treatment.” In fact, too much therapy will likely sustain you in a binge eating state, since it will make you hyper-focused on the bingeing. This is why many find over-monitoring intrusive and counterproductive. Just let it gradually subside, and it will.


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    • There you go everybody :

      Allen Frances’ Paid Role in Creating Psychiatric Epidemics

      The Rothman Report referenced throughout this video can be downloaded from:

      “There Are No Rules About Psychiatric Diagnosis — And That Must End!” Paula J. Caplan, NARPA 9/4/14

      Paula’s work is very important in understanding this appauling neurotoxic fraud that has harmed and killed so many.

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      • Streetphoto and Paula, This is very true! I am so grateful for whistleblowers like Paula J Caplan who spoke out after she witnessed what amounted to corruption that affects hundreds of thousands of people to this day, as an insider while a member of the DSM committee. Her courage to continue to speak out against their two-faced nonsense is exemplary.

        I hope someday the DSM members will be brought to trial as human rights criminals (not Paula, though!). They are not serving the pubic nor serving diagnosees. They are serving the drug companies. Is the elephant too big to be seen?

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      • Thank you, streetphotobeing, for the kind words about my work. You may know that I organized the filing of 9 complaints to the APA’s Ethics Department about harm from psych diagnoses, but they dismissed them with no attention to their merits and on totally spurious, manufactured grounds. I wrote about this in madinamerica. I also wrote in madinamerica about the 5 complaints I then helped file with the Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services and got the same results. But all this provided an essential paper trail PROVING that PSYCHIATRIC DIAGNOSIS IS ENTIRELY UNREGULATED, AND THE TWO ENTITIES THAT OUGHT TO BE PROVIDING OVERSIGHT HAVE NO INTEREST IN DOING SO.

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    • Paula:

      Thank you for your response, information, and insights. I certainly did not mean to imply that Allen Frances really admitted how crucial his role was in the medicalization of Americans’ everyday lives. He had hoped to play an important role in the DSM-5 task force, so he clearly would have gladly continued to do so if given the opportunity. I am curious to hear from you whether the DSM task force members openly admitted, perhaps during informal get-togethers, that their goal was purely to find more and more ways to dupe the public into improving their fortune/power, or whether it was like I suggested in my article – that this was a trade secret that everyone knew but it was understood that you can never talk about it.


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      • Well, Lawrence, you know doctors as well as we do. Never talking means they talk in their spas and clubs. They might talk in the elevators, the halls in their huddles, thinking we patients, with no brains in our heads at all, aren’t capable of hearing what they are saying nor understanding.

        Funny, I am only now reading many of the key antipsych books, but just from spending all those years in the nuthouses, I had them pinned down simply by overhearing their shit. You know, all it takes is sticking a pair of headphones into your ears and keeping them shut off. They’ll talk, thinking you can’t hear them. Or sitting in an apparent daze in front of the tube, but really, listening to their damn chatter. Especially when the head nurse or supervisory doc walks in. Stay in the daze or pace by. You’ll hear all you need to know that’s fit to print in the best antipsych books. Guaranteed.

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      • Lawrence, I would love to know how you found out that Allen Frances had hoped to play a crucial role in DSM-5! I have always wondered whether he left that whole enterprise willingly or was turfed out…and if the latter, for what reason. Please either post more info about that here, or write to me directly.
        Also, no, no one on the DSM-IV Task Force ever admitted why they did what they did. In my book, They Say You’re Crazy, I included an entire section about their possible motives, and there is a whole chapter about the dozens of gatekeeping technique they used that I experienced directly (I am sure there are more, but these are the ones I could report having experienced myself).

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    • OMG. I am so disenchanted, sad and Mad, up here in Canada ! For years I admired Allan Frances who was one of the main critics of the DSM fallacy. But now I hear about and read another side of the story. From Ms. Caplan who I did not know (thanks to streetphotobeing), another insider who quite convincingly gives me a cold shower. I will find difficult to read futur articles by Frances without feeling he may be a fraud, a traitor and somebody I put on a pedestal for way too long. But, I’ll get over it, someday, like so many other disillusions so far.

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      • Streetphoto, read Paula’s book, which she linked to. You can find it in hard copy.

        Paula, it would be great if I could add They Say You’re Crazy to my Kindle collection. When will it get put into Kindle format, or some kind of downloadable format? When I left the country I had to leave behind some 700 books, sadly, and now I’m trying to not accumulate so many hard copy books. I don’t mind accumulating files on my kindle, though, as they are transportable. Knowledge is POWER.

        Read, you guys! Reading helps keep you out of the grip of psychiatry. Psych drugs and ECT impair your brain, impair the attention span, worsen concentration and make it hard to read for many people (even though some folks claim otherwise). Reading takes practice and you have to keep it up. If you do not read, your brain will get out of practice. If you insist on only listening to audiobooks or only watching TV and video (as they do on the wards (some wards ban books!), your brain will lose its ability to read text. If you insist on only reading short bits of text at a time, your brain will lose its ability to sit and read for long periods. But if you have patience, and work at it, you will develop a love of reading. Just try and try, and what you lost due to being out of practice will come back. And keep at it!

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        • Julie Greene, I am sorry to say I have absolutely no control over which of my books is ever put on kindle or not. In fact, there is now a different publisher distributing They Say You’re Crazy than the one who originally published it. (These publishing houses keep buying each other out.) But perhaps if people write to the current distributor — which I believe is Perseus — and request that it be put on kindle, they might listen.

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  25. Interestingly enough I would have to disagree, with the reasons why you believe psychiatry is a success. Probably because I view it as a catastrophic failure. That cannot come up with a cogent theory to explain the illnesses it creates, like depression, schizophrenia, anxiety, and drug addiction. Sill psychiatry, prescribes medications for those illness, none of which work, and some with make illness much worse. It also continues to use electroshock treatment, for those same illnesses, even though there is no reason to believe that it does anything but enrich the psychiatrists, who conduct it. If psychiatristy works its because people still believe in medicine, and this makes the psychiatrist an authority figure, whose advice has a gravitas that people want to believe in, because they believe in authority figures. The carnage of psychiatry is every where, in the lives of patients who desperately need help, but don’t get it, blame themselves for not getting well, and then become self destructive.The thousands of suicides each year, the thousands of overdose deaths on prescribed medications. But sill psychiatry, continues on as if its not responsible for any of this. All the while standing in the way of new treatments and approaches that appear promising, solely to protect its income.

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    • Perhaps it is a success, because the proponents had a different goal in mind than actually helping people. I agree that if we assume the purpose of psychiatry is to assist people in becoming more functional and dealing better with emotional distress, it is a disastrous failure. But if the actual purpose is making a lot of people rich by creating permanent “clients” who can be forced to accept “treatment” even if it doesn’t work or makes things far worse over time, and establishing power for the psychiatric profession to define what is “normal” in support of the current status quo hierarchy in society, I’d have to say it’s been a roaring success.

      People’s biggest mistake in engaging with psychiatry (and to a lesser extent, the entire medical/pharmaceutical/insurance industry) is making the assumption that helping us obtain better health is the primary objective. Receiving medical care is the third leading cause of death in the USA annually. If patient health were really the objective, this statistic would horrify the medical world and lead to massive efforts to find and eliminate the causes of these unnecessary deaths and harms. The fact that it has not led to such an outcry and effort should be enough for us to realize that their objective is something very different, that has very little to do with maintaining their clients’ health and well being.

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      • OMG :”Receiving medical care is the third leading cause of death in the USA annually” Can you back up that fatal statement ? I have doubts, especially since many go to the hospital just before or when they are about to die … You spell out a pretty terrible statistic. I almost hope you are wrong !

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        • This was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, as mainstream a journal as there is in the USA. The data is from the Institute of Medicine, one of the most trusted government organizations. Here is a link to a summary.

          Over 100,000 people are killed IN HOSPITALS by drug side effects. Many more are killed outside of the hospital.

          It is scary!

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          • It is very rare that following ‘standard of care’ results in getting in trouble for sicking or killing patients. IE: Chemo/radiation – “well we lost the patient but we got the cancer!” (ie dying of the treatment, not the cancer).
            Following cooperative modes or approaches to health that are outside the captured monopoly of sickness management is very much more likely to attract penalty – as is challenging the power structure of such a rigged systemic replacement for human relational communication. (Health freedom).

            I suspect that the two causes above ‘doctoring’ – which are heart disease and cancer are also significantly increased by ‘doctoring’.
            IE: false models for causes of either that profit from intervening in ways that harm rather than help.

            Institutions don’t publicise their ‘dirty washing’ – or else people would lose confidence and become victims to fraudsters. But fraud is systemic – and in medical terms, protected against rival or exposure by regulatory capture and corporate cartel power ($$$$$$$$$$$).

            Self-education that learns and grows together is called for. Nothing is as we were led to believe – but that is the freedom for a genuine curiosity of discovery – once the initial disturbance integrates.

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          • Juste followed your link. Really scary like you say. All we have to do now is not break a leg or an arm and stay away from infections it seems. What will I do about my recent application (yesterday in fact) in a psychiatry outpatient center ? Darn thing.

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          • I’d say practice defensive engagement. Let the doc know up front that you are consulting them for information, that you’re an intelligent person and will take on their information but will be making your own decision as to what to do, even if they don’t agree. Tell them also that you will want ALL your options, and will take their suggestions home and research them yourself. Ask them if they have any problem with any of this, and if so, you’ll be seeking a new provider.

            I never take or do ANYTHING from a doctor without doing my own research. Doctors almost killed my dad when I was 8 or 9 years old and I learned early to verify anything the medical profession claimed to know.

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          • Jclaude, I hope you see this. This is how you deal with the appointments with them. So I assume you “applied” for a potential psych or therapist. Here is what you say:

            “I’m sorry, I just got a call and my old aunt just passed away. I will have to be out of town for a few days and I’m not sure when I will be returning. I honestly do not know if I can make it to that appointment or not. Can I call you when I return?” Then, never call.

            Or, try this: “I’m sorry, I’m in a grocery store right now in a cashier line and I can’t discuss anything personal. Can I take down the number and call you?” Pretend you will, and don’t.

            Or, “I’m sorry, I just can’t get my calendar app to open right now. Can I call you right back?” Don’t call.

            Or, “I’m sorry, this is just such a terrible connection. I don’t know what is wrong with this phone but I just can’t understand you. Who did you say you were?” Hang up. Be careful and don’t sound “incompetent” or deaf or they’ll send the cops. Just make like the phone battery is dead.

            Tell them you are at work and your boss won’t let you take personal calls. Insist they call after 9pm or on Sunday.

            Tell them you’re with your dealer and have to keep it in airplane mode. Policy.


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      • Steve McC, YES! I’ve been saying that for ages. See a doctor and you are asking for trouble. You are asking for at least Appointment Addiction, dependency, and a huge waste of time.

        Recently, my brother suggested I see a dentist. I guess he doesn’t get it. With fewer years ahead of me than behind, do I want to waste hours, day after day, of precious life in a dentists’ chair, waste thousands of dollars that go where? Into his pocket! For what? For pearly whites? I want to spend the last few years or decades of life being an activist, not paying time and money (hard-earned, I must say!) to the dentist! That plus I am totally convinced that if I go to one, I will lose my precious teeth.

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  26. Paula, votre “french” est très bien. Moi, j’en profite habituellement, ici, pour pratiquer mon anglais. J’ai quand même passé la tranche de de 1 1/2 à 11 ans à Timmins, Ontario, alors je ne veux pas rouiller. La mémoire me revient plus je l’exerce. J’ai oeuvré avec les anciens combattants en 2004 (hôpital Ste-Anne de bellevue, unité de stress et blessures opérationnelles) et, à l’époque, je lisais compulsivement tout ce qui s’écrivait sur le TSPT et PTSD. Je crois vous avoir lue d’ailleurs quoique je confond probablement avec d’autres célèbres “Caplan” (dans le domaine des jeunes ou de la famille, je ne me souviens pas trop : peut-être êtes vous liés de sang ?). Toujours est-il que je vous trouve brillante, allumée et articulée. Bravo à vous. Et je vous remercie de m’avoir troublée : j’aime pas dormir …

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    • jclaude, I took so much French back in elementary school and high school that I pretty much understood what you wrote without using Google Translate. I cannot speak it in a way that a French-speaker would understand, though. It would sound like word salad. Salada de palabras. Oops, wrong language, but I am guessing you got that.

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      • So nice of you ! I’m honored. But, in french we would write “patati, patata”, or “poutine” or again just plain old “blablabla” which is international I guess. So let’s call us up one day : I’ll practice my english and you french. I try to write as much as I can but I still need to practice me talking. Funny thing is : I was once very fluent to conversing in english and lost it al,l for a couple of years. One day, while I was attending a conference I surprised my colleagues (and even myself) by talking like a real Englishman. So suddenly and spontaneously. But, I guess it was unimportant : I was probably in hypomania back then ! But so happy to recover my up to then, lost faculties … Crazy no ?

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          • I have just now understood that the “no ensalada? ,..” bit was in response to my “french fry” text. I haden’t had time to google translate all those foreign words. But I did recall my long ago Honduranian nieces laughing and calling me loco around the 1970s. So I figured out that one by myself. That’s my response to your last post. Now, I want to also respond to the one on June 21, 7 : 22 am that has no reply button to write just ender. Totally hilarious. I adore sarcasm and also all those good hints before I resume my psychological practice. And your suggestions are so spaced out. If I don’t actually want to work, I will follow them. Seem’s like a lot of fun ! But, more seriously, I actually contemplated going back on the market without renewing my licence and on a freelance “out of norms” fashion. Only one appointment per day, so as not to be rushed in any way. No records or files, home service etc. But then, a regular, well paid job came up. I do have to pay my debts so, it’s a hard choice to do but obligations command necessities (or the other way around).

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      • I found Johnny and Jane to be a super enlightening book as a person who has been traumatized by recent abuse while inpatient on a medical floor (I was over 50 years old when all that happened!). I learned that trauma is human and I wasn’t diseased. I learned that war is terrible. Human but our reactions to it are normal and we very much should be horrified by war, and we very much should be horrified by abuse in a hospital, and we should be horrified by any sort of injustice, we should be angry, even for a long, long time. Until they hear us. Until things change.

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        • I reply to you as well as to Paula. I wont read that book cause I listened to too many soldier and veteran stories back in 2004. I side-witnessed so many atrocities that I was more and more against war, and the army and even nationalism. That’s not too good when your employer is “Veterans Affairs Canada”, a very federalist organisation. When I’d be coming back home after a day of hard work, and I would space out, dissociate and recall my own traumas. So I resigned, even if the permanent job “contest” was rigged in my favor (but that’s another story). Fact is : so many soldiers complained to me that they felt more harmed by “les Forces armée du Canada” than by their initial traumas, that is was very disturbing. I even had one veteran seen compensated up tu the heights of 90 % his salary for a minor trauma, so as to shut him up to cover up very worse traumas caused by the Canadian Army ! Shit !!! That was the drop that made my glass overflew. I thought of writing my “memoirs”, but didn’t have the guts of Paula. I was way too exhausted back then.

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  27. Wonder how many raised kids on a pittance. Oh wait, we should all get those high paying jobs. Let me think on that while I stop off to get a burger. Everyone’s brain is capable of learning the same content, earn the same wages. No one should take it out on their kids if they can hardly feed them.
    As we sit in our fine offices not joining psychiatry but still holding judgement through some ideal.
    No worries, it’s not touching a nerve on a personal level, since my kids are proving to you that they are JUST fine by being part of success.

    We should not treat kids for ADHD, we should voluntarily part with our paycheques to ensure those kids get the same opportunity to engage in the good paying jobs. And then what? Who will do the low paying jobs?

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