What COVID-19 Has to Teach Us About Psychiatric Oppression

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Psychiatric oppression.
It is an airless void,
Rendering us voiceless
No matter how loud we scream.

Screaming. Yelling. Crying. Begging.
Straining to be heard.
Under the weight of a label
That instructs them not to listen.

Psychiatric oppression.
It is constriction, compression, containment.
Lock us in, hold us down, drug us up
Until we’re ready to listen…

To those who would never do as much for us.

On January 23, DJ Jaffe used his National Alliance on Serious Mental Illness Facebook page to pontificate about whether or not force has any real discernible impact for those against whom it is wielded. “I am trying to track down the study that allegedly shows people avoid care for fear of involuntary commitment. I think it is one of those mental health propagated myths that has no basis in fact,” he offered without any hint of absurdism whatsoever.

Jaffe is a well-known purveyor of the Treatment Advocacy Center’s force-laden “wisdom,” so it makes sense that he’d deny any of its downsides. He uses his apparently copious amounts of free time to relentlessly self-promote his book, appear for interviews disguised as someone far more informed than he will ever be, and sow seeds of fear against all folks diagnosed across the nation with his op-ed-writing scissor hands. (His favorite pastime? Why, slicing our rights and autonomy into bits, of course!) Jaffe’s gone so far as to recommend that a system that already speaks of us as if we were not there actually make us leave the room so as to reduce whatever tiny grains of guilt might be shouldered by the “professionals” when speaking poorly of us in our presence. He shows no signs of slowing down.

But what of the questions implicitly posed in his search: Does force in the name of treatment negatively impact those subjected to it? Does it make them avoidant of seeking help again? And underneath all that, just a bit further down: What is psychiatric oppression exactly, and how does it impact us? It’s less that these questions are difficult to answer, and more that the obviousness of the answers seems bafflingly difficult to convey to someone who’s so unable (unwilling?) to hear them.

Adults unfamiliar with confinement on any kind of locked unit generally seem unable to fathom the nearly bottomless pit of loss that is involved. This also includes—though to a lesser extent—folks who weren’t ever confined long enough to move through all the stages of grief and to the point of resignment (though that can happen awfully fast). But barely a month after Jaffe’s oblivious inquiry, COVID-19 had taken enough of a hold that pretty much the whole world was getting a taste of what it feels like to have the walls close in on you by someone else’s order. And no amount of “for your own goods” can fix how that can feel.

To be clear, psychiatric oppression is not strictly about mere confinement. No, the formula that makes it so hard to bear is made up of several other ingredients, including:

  • Loss of (at least perceived) value and function
  • Loss of social capital

Fortunately, COVID-19 has brought many people a taste of those ingredients, too.

Part 1: The Confinement

I’ve never been much of a fan of comparing the usual challenges of life in a capitalist nation as lived by often quite privileged people to the experiences of those who have been marginalized and contained against their will. I can recall a forensic training I once attended where the big “ha ha” was a comic of someone working in a cubicle comparing their life to imprisonment. Indeed, Ellen DeGeneres recently faced a pretty stern backlash for comparing her quarantine-a-la-mansion stint to jail.

Really, the comparisons to all types of incarceration abound at the moment, including institutionalization on an inpatient psychiatric unit. However, comparing a time when you’re (sort of) required to stay in your own home with all of your own belongings, readily accessible technology, all the caffeine you can drink and cigarettes (or whatever else) that you can smoke, and the ability to wear what you want, sleep when The space inside my apartment is starting to feel as heavy and dense as the space within a locked unit. Each time while locked up, it felt almost like being under water and being unable to breathe. Dense and stifling and solid and horribly grave. I can't bear having the space within my own home having this density and this gravity. - Kazimir DeWolfeyou want, eat when you want, and more to being locked in a psychiatric facility with a stranger for a roommate, a plastic-covered mattress, and jello for dessert only when they say…. is a stretch. Yet, while my inclination is likely still to want to pop someone in the mouth (in an only-in-my-imagination sort of way) if they dare assert that they know what forced incarceration is like because of the COVID quarantine, there’s something about that stretch that rings true for those of us who’ve now experienced both.

Consider the following quote:

We did a review of the psychological impact … Most reviewed studies reported negative psychological effects including post-traumatic stress symptoms, confusion, and anger. Stressors included longer … duration, fears [related to potential or diagnosed illness], frustration, boredom, inadequate supplies, inadequate information, financial loss, and stigma. Some researchers have suggested long-lasting effects.”

Without further imposed definition, the quote could easily be assumed to be speaking of incarceration on a psychiatric ward. And yet, it is instead speaking of the observed impacts of quarantine as found in a review of 3,166 different papers on the topic. In fact, one So this is not the same as solitary confinement or an isolation room. I can feel the sun. I can walk more than 5 feet before having to turn around. I can see signs of life and hear cars go by. I have entertainment and kitchen privileges. AND, this "social distancing" still reminds of being locked away. - Cindy Marty Hadgeof the included studies found that being quarantined could predict post-traumatic stress responses and alcohol abuse even three years after the event. Interestingly (but not surprisingly), the review found that people who’d been given psychiatric diagnoses were more prone to experience anger and/or anxiety months after the quarantine had ended. Of course, one has to wonder if the study was actually measuring those who’d just been diagnosed… or previously confined and thus found their initial experience of containment further compounded. And, to Jaffe’s point, the research also found that people who’d previously been quarantined (not sick, but quarantined!) showed an increase in avoidance of any setting that they associated with the cause of that experience.

Part 2: Loss of (At Least Perceived) Value and Function

Meanwhile, on April 29, Nancy Doyle published an article in Forbes magazine, “We Have Been Disabled: How the Pandemic Has Proven the Social Model of Disability.” In the article, Doyle explains:

“For those who have never heard of the social model of disability…It separates impairment from disability and focuses on the responsibility that society holds for the disablement of others. For example, if everyone was taught sign language at an early age a deaf person would no longer be [as] disadvantaged. … A few months ago, the world was suddenly plunged into a situation where physical proximity to others became a no go. In one swoop, a whole group of people were placed at an immediate disadvantage without having done anything to deserve it. If people skills and face-to-face interaction are your key skill, then your greatest professional asset is now useless to your employer. You have been devalued by forces beyond your control and the world changing in ways that don’t play to your strengths.

In other words, in a rapidly moving shift, many people who had formed their identities around their careers… who considered at least some of their value to be wrapped up in what they did for work, and in their ability to make a living and provide for their families in general… had much of that snatched at least temporarily away with no guarantee if and how it would be returned. Professional drivers. Childcare workers. Event planners. Public speakers. Salespeople. Personal trainers. Librarians. Actors in live theater. So many others. Huge numbers of them—including some who have grown accustomed to a fair amount of adoration and praise in their roles—simply aren’t needed with the world in its current state. It would be an understatement to suggest that some elements of this mirror the sorts of identity loss that occurs when someone is committed to an inpatient unit, or even simply diagnosed and told to can their dreams for family and a career. It’s just on a smaller, more individual scale.

Part 3: Social Capital

But let’s talk about the last ingredient of this three-part recipe: Loss of social capital. Social capital comes in many sizes and amounts, but many of us have at least a little bit of it. It is what sometimes helps earn us friends, and/or stay in the know. It gains us invitations to certain meetings and events. It gets us phone numbers not publicly available, and encourages some people to respond quicker, or at all to our inquiries. Perhaps, most importantly, it is what helps identify us a “credible source,” and “to be listened to” and “taken seriously” when we speak within our families, among our friends, in our neighborhoods, at our jobs, and beyond.

Unfortunately, it is that brand of social capital that also takes a dive when we move from “those in charge” to “those to be contained.” And while the dive is nowhere near as long and hard as when one is seen as having a “brain disease” (or for a host of other reasons rooted in racism, gender, disability, educational access, socioeconomic status, etc.), it’s happening right now, too. We don’t know when this will be over, and real details about what’s going to happen next are hard to come by. More of us than not are left to tune into vague updates from state officials, hoping we’ll glean something that will reveal a light at the end of the tunnel. Say-so about what comes next is well beyond most of our grasps. We feel lucky when they deign to give us a few extra scraps.

Some may be surprised to learn that this is small potatoes when compared with the loss of social capital that comes with being locked up in a psychiatric facility. There, nurses can choose to withhold information even about what psychiatric drugs someone is expected to swallow without much in the way of repercussions, and discharge dates can be a moving target left to the whims of hospital staff and subject to outside influences such as vacation schedules and weekend staffing ratios in community-based group homes. But the comparison is still apt.

I recall a presentation at a conference during which there was a dialogue about how we could get the concept of psychiatric oppression to be discussed and better understood among the general public. One person suggested that the X-Men films were the ticket. I challenged that idea because I have not found the general populace to be especially insightful when it comes to applying fictionalized (or even their own) experiences of one type of systemic oppression or hardship to another. I fear the same is true here. I don’t believe that people will easily extrapolate the emotional impact they experienced from quarantine life to the much deeper traumas and losses routinely incurred within the mental health system. But… maybe there’s hope.

Look to your disabled friends, Look to your trauma survivor friends, Look to your neurodivergent friends, Look to your suicidal friends, Look to your formerly (and currently) incarcerated friends, Look to your weird, unattractive, and unpopular friends, Not just because we might need your support, But because we've been living with isolation, loneliness, sickness, and lack of resources for much of our lives. We might have some important wisdom to share about how to handle the next few months. - Natan CohenThe answer to DJ Jaffe’s question as to whether or not forced incarceration in psychiatric facilities leads to fear of psychiatric facilities (or of reaching out for help in general) is an obvious one. It’s all the more obvious now that we’re witnessing many of the same components being forced on so many around us via quarantine. It is a large part of why so many of us who’ve previously been held against our will are feeling so uneasy right now. Yet, it is important that we find ways to use this opportunity to draw the connections in bold, impossible-to-miss lines, and turn this crisis into a learning opportunity that might actually help move psychiatric oppression out of the shadows of the unknown and into the light.

Let those of us who’ve “been there” be the teachers for now. We are perhaps some of the best equipped to show people the way through the current darkness. But once the light returns, I sincerely hope that the memories stick, and the gift of our wisdom can be repaid.

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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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167 COMMENTS

  1. “Parting with a loved one is never easy. I said goodbye to my mother recently when she went on holiday. So I know how they (Aboriginal parents having their children stolen by the State to be raised as white people) feel”.

    It’s for their own good of course. Not that the people doing the stealing were affected by any of their policies. In fact in some cases they have profited from it. And the “Sorry” had to be wrenched from their clutches? I guess empathy must be considered a ‘disease’ in some circles.

    Good article Sarah.

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    • Hi Boans,

      Ugh to that quote! I wish people were better at balance… At trying to understand how their own experiences make build understanding of others experiences, without ever thinking they can truly know or have somehow experienced the same thing. I sincerely do hope people can begin to make the connection between quarantine and what it might be like to be held against your will in a psych facility, but *never* in a “Now I know what this is like” sort of way… Moreso “If this felt this bad, imagine how much greater of a loss that would be…” It’s a stretch to expect this to happen in any reasonable way, I know, but somehow we need to find a way for people to better understand the impact of loss of power on humanity. Doesn’t sound like the person in that quote is finding that balance at all.

      In any case, thanks for your comment and for reading. 🙂

      -Sera

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      • The quote is actually from an old ‘movie’ called Babakiueria’. A look at what it would have been like if things had happened in reverse in Australia. The quote is from about 17:00 mins.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NqcFg4z6EYY&t=566s

        I’ve just woken from a nightmare pondering things, and guess your comment eases some pain in a way. Consider;

        I get tortured and kidnapped and the hospital does a cover up and ‘fuking destroys’ me. They do a good job on me leaving me homeless and totally psychologically destroyed to the point of suicide. My family gone, everything I own stolen from me, and i’m living on the streets because I dared to complain and got the proof via the FOI process.

        Even my own legal representatives stabbed me in the back by accepting fraudulent documents knowing that if they looked at the real set they would be responsible for acting on the use of torture methods, so they conspire to pervert the course of justice with the Operations Manager at the hospital. Police are despatched to retrieve the documents I have and they arrange to have me killed in an Emergency Dept, someone interferes thinking why kill me, just gaslight me to suicide and it’s all fixed. Picked up a killer in the ED in the process.

        Fast forward a couple of years. I go through the process with someone qualified to understand the legal consequences of what happened. As I am going through the documents I notice that the documents I have, and the documents sent to my legal representatives are not the same. Put two lawyers in two rooms with either set, and they would come to very different conclusions. This of course is criminal fraud changing legal narrative and then providing that to lawyers (the attached memo authorising the changes by the Clinical Director calls it “editing”). It conceals the offences of torture and kidnapping (and others). This is also not a crime committed against me, but the whole community.

        So I get to speak to some lawyers who ………. well all I can really speak about is what I know to be true at this point (one senior lawyer ensuring I receive ineffective representation from someone who was involved in the original concealment. They obviously have motive to get out of what they did, and will throw me under the bus for the person looking and noticing the crimes. Then rinse lather repeat on the pervert the course of justice. It’s clever being able to deny someone who is the vicitm of torture access to legal represntation). I have exposed an act of criminal fraud that was done in order to conceal the torture and kidnapping of a citizen, and then some really disgusting conduct to fuking destroy the victim of that torture and kidnapping. This is not in contention, and anyone who says it is can look, the proof is there. So, given the vicious attack on me what would you think the State would do? I mean check the conditions of the Convention against the use of Torture as to what they SHOULD do, assist and not continue to threaten me or my family (witnesses). And yet what ARE they doing? I can point you to at least three witnesses that have been threatened by Police to remain silent. Though a Police Siperintendent tells me in writing that they have received no complaint about police threatening witnesses so nothing to see there. Imagine, your going to go to police and complain about them threatening when you have borne witness to someone being subjected to what I have? One of them (a psychologist) said he could no longer speak to me because he was afraid for his families safety.

        Also consider that thinking the documents have been retrieved and then acting as if the matter has been covered up meant that the letter from the Chief Psychitrist denying any knowledge of the torture and kidnapping would be accpeted. Exposing that he knew of the crimes and had chosen to go along wth the fraud committed by the hospital???? Anyone want to take a look at his letter of response to the Mental Health Law Centre? You would be shocked with knowledge of what is in the real set of documents. Knew about the crimes, thought the hospital had police retrieve the documents, and went along with the fraud. FACT (or at least I can say the author of the response to the complaint went along with the fraud knowingly. I have some doubts about someone with “expert legal knowledge” writing the poison pen letter given to me, though the lawyers claim they didn’t have time to read it. Which was really fortunate because the Chief Psychiatrist doesn’t even understand the protections for “consumers, carers and the community” afforded by the very Act he is charged with administering. How bizarre. I did write to them and ask that they tell the Emperor that he had no clothes but they were busy assisting the criminals and were not interested in ensuring the person charged with protecting the public understood the law and did their duty. Best he be left to stray and leave us all exposed to torture and kidnappings.)

        The lawyers? All run away and left me to continue to be ‘fuking destroyed’. What they are obtaining for that viciousness I don’t know, but …. what I can say is that the Minister for Health is certainly doubling down on the States criminal conduct. He says my complaining is an illness despite me knowing he has access to the proof of what i’m saying. Though I’m certain he feels the need to conceal the criminal conduct to maintain the reputation of his mental health services who aren’t doing a lot of torturing, kidnapping and killing. Well, we would never really know given he is also authorising the distribution of fraudulent documents by hospitals to conceal criminality, and allowing unintended negative outcomes to do effective cover ups.

        I accept I may be insane, but why is it that when I exposed these fraudulent documents sent to the Mental Health Law Centre has everyone gone into a panic and then found it easier to fuking destroy me AGAIN for speaking the truth? (Police threatening to arrest me for having my own medical records showing I was ‘spiked’ with benzos which leads to questions as to why) I get it human rights lawyers and people with a duty to protect citizens from torture should’t be engaged in assisting in the concealment of torture but we need to understand their need for funding. If they don’t commit the crimes of perverting the course of justice and compound conceal evidence of criminal offences, their money will be cut off by the Minister.

        So me parting with my loved ones because Police and Mental Health Services don’t like the truth that they tortured and kidnapped me seems a small price for the Minister to pay. My career and home utterly destroyed and he still can’t bring himself to call a spade a spade and prefers the terms “referral” and “assessment” when he know that this is not right, unless one maintains the fraud (ie utters, further criminal conduct by the Minister). They destroy my family and even with the truth lawyers turn their backs and won’t even assist me to have my property returned so I can leave this vile country that is committing human rights abuses and concealing them with fraud, slander and convenience killings. Enjoy your free lunch Minister.

        Still, I digress, how’s the weather in your neck of the woods? lol

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    • Yeah, I hear you… it is a leap. So many people get caught up in everything else *but* the impact of the loss of power we inflict on people who are marginalized in this society. But I’m still going to hope we find a way. Thanks for reading and commenting!

      -Sera

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      • I’d like to see a town hall panel with people from the comment section. I took a risk and put it out there. It is being considered, but…

        “Then there’s the problem of figuring out whom to invite and how. The risk of insulting people is, obviously, high, and the dangers are steep. Some of us have been the objects of threats that, at times, had to be taken seriously.”

        (PSA/Note to Self: Don’t threaten people!)

        And I was right back at that danger to self and others place. You can’t hear me because I’m a monster and I’m a monster because you can’t hear me. And back at that time I won an art contest for “mental illness” but couldn’t win the prize because it wouldn’t be “ethical” if we weren’t ALL winners.  

        But I also can relate. I’ve been threatened too. I have this arrogant prejudiced side, “I don’t want anyone to get “crazy” on me either!”  And what’s worse, in my past life I was training to become a paramedic. I’ve been that person who held down another believing I was saving them. And the suicide calls left a mark that battles with the marks left by psychiatry. I’ve called the police on my own brother.

        When I tried to brainstorm a better way in an online survivor support group I was screamed at. Then meetings were held about me without me because the screaming group member felt unsafe. Wherever I go, there this bloody monster is. I felt unsafe too. The harder I tried to make it right the worse it all got. No one could explain the social rules in any predictable way. My confusion was just a fake out and the verbal shock treatment was justified and for the greater good. And in a way it was. But next time could I have one of those “trigger warnings” too, preferably before the yelling starts?

        What bugs me is that I never did get an answer to my question. “Who do I call if not 911?” Maybe that could be the Town Hall title? 🙂   

        I like the word “trigger” because I think of guns and surprise and loud noises and death. I also think of how it is my trigger to keep the safety on and if I don’t it’s my damage to repair. I’m a visual thinker. The word works for me. 

        If my only choices are a muzzle or the pound, I’d rather live in the wild. I’m not sure I can say “this hurts” gently anymore.

        So back to the point. I hid in my roommates closet to scare her when she got home. She stared into the closet, but not at me. I started knowing that I must not be the only monster in the closet and started screaming first. Then she started screaming too. By the time we got ourselves sorted it wasn’t funny anymore and the other monster was long gone and I imagine, is still laughing. 

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  2. Hi Sera and thank you.

    I might add, that some folks who are tired of work, perhaps see covid as a holiday. Yet if extended too long or it cuts into to many usual activities, or income, it becomes that burden.
    And that burden can becomes them, in need of aid possibly.

    Psych does not have a track record of being able to instill a feeling of pride, or empowerment in people, and those are mostly the root reasons of why people seek wisdom, yet turned out, the wrong source.
    That is however NOT what they “advertise”. They always advertise “HELP” is available. It is WHY people trust them. However, how is an abusive, demeaning, non authentic environment empowering?

    Covid-19 is more illuminating to the already marginalized.
    It is illuminating in the fact that the adverts continue. The adverts continue through making sure it is named something that describes it in a social manner, “social distancing”, when indeed it is “physical distancing”.
    Yes we all know that social connections are closely tied to “physically being near”, so of course the “social” will be affected.
    Yet the implications of naming it “social distancing” are that, no you cannot talk to people in proximity any longer.
    The second advert is “we are all in this together”, along with that “mental help” we can avail ourselves of.
    Those therapists we can pay for, when already strapped for cash and yet only see them on skype. Mail for bills is still going strong.

    I guess one thing is good. Perhaps there is less nearness in units. Perhaps the shrinks are scared and staying home. Perhaps there is less wrestling down victims for their useful “meds”.

    I think one thing we are learning is that in reality, these viruses have been on not such a grand scale, but there is nothing preventing a virus to threaten humanity as a species.
    Then we would all be in it together

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    • “The second advert is “we are all in this together”, along with that “mental help” we can avail ourselves of.
      Those therapists we can pay for, when already strapped for cash and yet only see them on skype.”

      We are all in this together, said the spider to the fly.

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      • ThereAreFourLights,

        I spent some time in a hotel recently which also led to my seeing commercials for the first time in quite a long time… And in the matter of about a day, I became a serious risk of smashing the TV for all those ads saying “We are in this together” in so many different ways, when that’s clearly not true for huge swaths of our communities. No less infuriating is all the money that must be going into all those ridiculous advertisements that could be going to housing, food, and so much else that could actually help in real ways. Oy. Anyway, thanks for mentioning this!

        -Sera

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    • What we are learning is that this is another virus that has been unleashed and thus represents a challenge to our immune systems, individually and collectively. But healthy immune systems are up to the challenge. If they could, viruses would laugh at the notion of themselves being wiped out or “contained.” Despite, or maybe because of this having taken a personal toll on me, I have concluded two main things: a) it is a killer virus for people in nursing homes and those in fragile health (even though they may not realize they are in fragile health), and b) for everyone else it’s like a bad flu, which sucks and can be dangerous, but has been considered par for the course all our lives.

      Rather than try to “contain” the spread via the familiar strategies, in retrospect the response should have been a) send the National Guard to guard and hermetically seal nursing homes; b) warn immune-compromised people to avoid crowds, public trans, and medical facilities; and c) carry on with life, and fund an army of holistic healers to help people learn how to build up their immunity. (Also maybe make it a capital offense to breed this shit in laboratories.)

      Incidentally, not that it’s been mentioned here, but I think EVERY WEEK as many Americans die from something as died in the Vietnam War. So we can lose that statistic, and others like it.

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      • Eh, Oldhead, I don’t really want to get into a conversation unpacking how much the media is or isn’t over blowing all this chaos. This piece doesn’t really attempt to take a stance on that, so much as a stance on how the response that is may have something to teach people about psychiatric oppression. I can at least agree that there is much to question in how the media and politicians have chosen to respond to all this in pretty much every direction, but what the truth is remains pretty obscured, I think. I can say, however, that I’m not aware of any other illness in recent history that has been killing people in institutions at the rate this one has. About a 50% transmission rate and at least 13 people dead in one of our MA psych facilities alone in the last month. I feel like some of the bigger picture stuff you’re referencing will be easier to assess a bit down the road, but I worry – as with so many things – it will remain hard to get at the full picture for a long time.

        -Sera

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        • I don’t think I even mentioned the corporate media (which include Facebook and Twitter), as I don’t even consider them as a credible source of information. Most people know by now that we’re being played, we just don’t know all the details of who we’re being played by and what the motivation is. I think even Trump knows by now that he’s been manipulated by the Fauci/Gates cabal. I know that just every holistic healer out there is outraged by what is happening.

          Why would capitalists deliberately crash their own economy? Something sinister is going on here and we need to get to the bottom of it asap.

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          • “Why would capitalists deliberately crash their own economy? Something sinister is going on here and we need to get to the bottom of it asap.”

            Is it their own economy they’re crashing? Looks to me like a radical diet to trim a bit of weight really quickly.

            Possible reason, there’s too many people on the planet and we need to justify removing many of them so that those who remain can live in relative bliss? They worked hard for it and it’s time to cash in their chips and retire to the pool area for some drinks. It’s been a hard slog at the card tables and now …… time to call security to escort us out of the building with the bags of cash. Suckers 🙂

            It’s about 3000 miles to Graceland.

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    • Thanks, Sam. You mentioned ‘less nearness’ in units. I’m not sure that’s consistently true. COVID is spreading through psychiatric facilities just like nursing homes and jails, and some hospitals are leaving up to 5 people per bedroom. Others have mostly continued holding groups with people too close together. And so on. There are reports of doctors still on the unit and refusing to wear masks. And then we mix that with the reality that many people in the psych system are more vulnerable healthwise, often *because* of the debilitating nature the “treatment” can have… Oy.

      Anyway, yes, some have regarded this all as a vacation and won’t be impacted in the same way… but there are many, many others who have felt pretty impacted, so I hope there’s something to be done with that!

      -Sera

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      • This, nor any other time is the right time to lock anyone up.
        No one gets incarcerated for an “illness”, do they?
        Perhaps some psychiatrists miss the familiarity of the environment. I would imagine
        it to be quite depressing/distressing for a psychiatrist to be thrust into an environment of “average” people? I have witnessed them in that environment 🙂 And I’m thinking the same can be said for the staffers of the “groups”.
        Perhaps the only ones that really don’t want to be there are the clients.
        At least they realize it is not the most mentally enhancing or stimulating environment.

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      • We haven’t even seen the beginning. Now you have fake “leftists” and wannabe “anarchists” leading the charge to keep everything locked down. Why the fuck would people who consider themselves “progressive” attack demonstrations by working class and small business people who don’t want to see their life’s work wiped out? This is not a “left” I want to be part of, and in fact it is not the Left at all; these are the new totalitarians. True leftists are hiding in the woodwork right now as the “woke” crowd of well-heeled elitist “progressives” try to lead us into hell.

        Btw I include those in psych institutions and prisons in the ranks of the most vulnerable, as the general treatment of inmates is guaranteed to generate plenty of “pre-existing conditions.”

        I also refuse to wear a mask except when I go into a store. There’s no science behind it. I consider it to be what many call “virtue signalling.”

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    • I don’t think Asimov was talking scifi when he wrote this book. And from memory (it was 30 years ago I read it) he pointed to virus being the most likely in wiping out the population of the planet.

      “In A Choice of Catastrophes Asimov turns his encyclopaedic mind and his distinctive pen to all the potential disasters that threaten the existence of our civilisation.

      Mr. Asimov defines five classes of Catastrophes: (1) The entire universe might so change its properties as to become uninhabitable; (2) Something might happen to the sun that would spell our doom; (3) The Earth itself might undergo the kind of convulsion that would make life impossible on it; (4) Something (perhaps man-made) might destroy human life upon the Earth; and (5) Civilization as we know it might be destroyed, interrupting the advance of technology and condemning humanity to a primitive life.

      As only he can, Mr. Asimov makes remarkably clear such complicated concepts as black holes, quasars and supernovas; explains the properties of the sun; discusses the bombardment of the Earth by meteorites and other extra-terrestrial objects; deals with the more familiar threats from volcanoes, earthquakes, continental drift and climatic change; and focuses on the awesome impact of a nuclear war.

      The author ends on the reassuring — yet stern — note that those calamities that are most imminent are those we can control. In fact, says Mr. Asimov, ‘it may well be that there is not a catastrophe of the imminent sort that is not avoidable. And certainly the chances of avoiding one increase if we stare the catastrophe boldly in the face and estimate its dangers’.”

      I see one problem being that with a mechanism to silence any inconvenient truths why would their be a need to stare the catastrophe boldly in the face, when you can make whatever you want a reality with negligence, fraud and slander? Our leaders wandering around labelling our ‘prophets’ insane, and subjecting them to ‘treatments’. “Gee I didn’t see those Huns coming, and here’s us the greatest military power the world has ever seeen”

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    • When will the collective humanity ever learn that we are NOT in it all together? The rich and powerful control us–they are not together with us.

      If the abuses of the Big Pharma State are not apparent during this time, how can we ever expect them to be seen as forms of psychiatric oppression?

      I am happy to no more be living in the Pharma State, but south of the border in Mexico’s Narco State. For many reasons, this is far superior.

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  3. I daresay Jaffe would not appreciate being locked up for days or weeks then released on a bunch of drugs that made him ill and a badge of shame that made everyone treat him like Jean Valjean at the opening of Les Miserables.

    His argument would probably be: “Of course not. But I’m not mentally ill. Pain hurts me.”

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    • Rachel777, I think you’re right about his response, unfortunately… But I’d be totally willing to fundraise for a ‘Make DJ Jaffe spend a week in a state psych facility’ campaign if I thought there was any hope of being able to carry it out.

      -Sera

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    • His argument would be much more insidious and deep. He’d lie and say that mentally ill people are biologically defective and the drugs fix this defection and therefore help them. He’s not defective so he doesn’t need to be fixed with drugs. His metaphorical allies have already convinced the populace that mental illness is caused by a chemical imbalance meaning they will accept it. That’s how they can rationalize making meth illegal because it’s so horrible while telling children they need to be high on meth all day.

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  4. “I am trying to track down the study that allegedly shows people avoid care for fear of involuntary commitment. I think it is one of those mental health propagated myths that has no basis in fact,”

    They won’t see us. Survival demands remaining invisible. A philosophical argument could be made that psychiatric survivors don’t truly exist in any meaningful way.

    Thank you, Sera. I appreciated the effort. You made some good points.

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      • “I am trying to track down the study that allegedly shows people avoid care for fear of involuntary commitment. I think it is one of those mental health propagated myths that has no basis in fact,”

        I’m trying to track down the study that shows that people avoid involuntary committment (and prefer to be shot, tazered, pepper sprayed etc in attempting to avoid it) for fear of ‘care’. I think it’s one of those facts that has no basis in the mental health propagated myths.

        Ensuring a study isn’t done does not mean there isn’t evidence available, just that denial is the preferred method of dealing with the truth. Like the ashes from the ovens at Auschwitz, it was everywhere but was not considered proof of the myth that surrounded what was going on over the fence.

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  5. Sera:

    Thank you for the great article! (I have not posted in over four years—I miss you! And Oldhead too. Oldhead, one of the clearest thinkers on MIA—not flattery, EARNED!)

    Even if your empathy is only one way (you are thinking about the suffering of others, and hoping for the same in return), I do believe this is the way to go.

    During the COVID- 19 outbreak, I immediately thought of those confined in psychiatric hospitals & group homes (I was in a group home for five years & in the psych hospitals six times—state, private & county—I am also a 2nd generation MK Ultra, or Monarch Program victim, fun!)

    but I also *immediately* thought about the prison population.

    (Kudos to Leah’s great coverage of COVID- 19 fatalities being ‘roughly double’ within psychiatric confinement vs. the prison population. Some MHS survivors with lived experience now know that psych drugs lower the immune system, and almost all on this site do!)

    I once posted that understanding issues of other communities was the way to go. It was my last post on this site over four and a half years ago, but it didn’t make it onto the board. The empathy will probably go in one direction for now, but it does not surprise me that you are the one to pave the way.

    For the last four and a half years I have been following the careers of the tech whistle blowers, journalistic whistle blowers (going back to Daniel Ellsworth),
    activist thinkers, leaders, & critics of the Deep State in every field I can keep up with.

    The trick to it has been (for me) to stick with it until I can find the relevant threads. They are there. And certainly empathy is the starting point!

    I do realize that our detractors post on here (in increasingly civil tones) to better understand our arguments in order to stay one step ahead of us.

    Yay to free speech and all that.

    However, this plays in their favor versus ours since they are better funded & have better connections than we do. They take advantage of this to run ahead of us and continue to dupe the public who are unaware of the debate.

    In other words, the APA and Big Pharma are completely aware that there is no proof that “mental illness” is a brain disorder, but they are still hoping to find a connection in the genome. Until then, they can dupe the public in thinking that the culprit organ is the brain since it “looks that way” to the observer.

    This is akin to saying the Earth is flat since it looks that way to the naked eye in the middle of the ocean with no land bearings.

    In the article “Muffled by Psychiatry,” I noticed that Steve Mc Crea defined his terms like a 5-star Philospher/General & then marched onto the bio-medical reductionist battlefield to delineate a set of behaviors as “jerkiness,” rather than as a “psychopath.”

    I can no longer use the term psychopath, not even for expediency, because that term, and others like it, have been coopted by the Guild to hog-tie anyone they dislike into forced treatment.

    And that is a slippery slope indeed. (Oldhead linked several of your articles to the above, btw)

    Let me connect the relevance of that article to yours with the quality of empathy, or lack thereof, among our detractors.

    Jerks (as opposed to psychopaths) will use the same arguments launched at them to attack their competitors! And as Oldhead pointed out, it was simply an in-house scramble for money & status. It is a common tactic of JERKS to use that type of circular thinking (although that was a circle within a circle, sigh. Are you getting dizzy yet? That is the goal)

    One psychiatrist uses the historical and well-documented abuses of psychiatry to silence another psychiatrist, or practitioner, and learned how to crystallize their arguments from posts on MIA!!!

    If psychiatry weren’t winning the battle so far, it would be funny: Jeffrey Lieberman standing onstage in a white lab coat to intimidate or impress his audience. A gem to satiric filmmaking!

    So if our detractors have no empathy, always finding new arguments and methods on how & why they have the right to drug us (I am barely staying ahead of AOT, RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW!, but I digress), we can reverse that to find new ways to be empathetic to other activist groups.

    We can take the time to understand their terminology; we can take the time to understand the current debate/s in their movements. I thought you did a great job in this article. You framed it in terms of how others may be responding to COVID- 19, & hoped for the same consideration in return.

    I have been checking in over the years, and I notice we have lost Matt, Steve Gilbert, Bonnie & Julie. I was devastated. Still am. Steve was kind enough to comfort me on that. We are a great family.

    Miss you. Love you, Sera.
    (btw, organic camu camu powder is the strongest source of plant-based vitamin C on the planet—great for improving the general immune system response on all fronts)

    ~Paige.
    (also please note Seth Farber’s essay on The Deep State and psychiatry—I first found it on MIA & Steve was helping me with that, thanks Steve! In other words, if you type in “Targeted Individual” in MIA’s search engine, the link to the essay will pop up in the old forum section)

    https://everydayconcerned.net/2016/12/12/seth-farber-ph-d-the-psychiatric-metanarrative-targeted-individuals-and-the-deep-state-a-response-to-the-new-york-times/

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    • Hi Paige,

      Thanks for all you wrote. And yes, I was *just* talking with someone about the loss of Matt in particular just a week ago. But you’re right. So many losses. Deron Drumm, too, and I’m sure so many others we’re not thinking of in this moment. And you are absolutely right about people who are incarcerated in prisons, too… Honestly, everyone who was invisible is even moreso now. 🙁

      -Sera

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    • Thanks for the shout-out and for invoking the memories of some of our martyrs; I had been working pretty closely with both Julie and Stephen up till their passing.

      Yes, I posted the links to a couple of Sera’s articles in which she correctly disparaged the attempt to attack Trump as “mentally ill,” rather than on moral or political grounds — one thing which I have always been in total agreement with.

      A lot of things are starting to happen movement-wise, so I hope you’ll stick around.

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      • oldhead:

        It is wonderful to talk to you again! Remember the forum days when it was (mostly) you, me, & Matt banging our heads against the wall trying to find a way to counter Murphy? Just to have it sneaked in under the 21st c. Cures Act? Obama’s last day or second to last day of office? Wow!

        I have been in MK Ultra land (among many, many other strange lands, Curiouser and Curiouser….). Do you, by any chance, have knowledge of The Church Committee of 1975, when the CIA was exposed for doing illegal experiments on the “mentally ill,” homeless, orphans, vets & prisoners?

        The last post I ever wrote on here was also a shout-out to you as well. I said in that post, that that was something you were probably quite knowledgeable about. Along with Daniel Ellsberg (not Ellsworth–thought I had gone through & got all of the misspellings), author of “The Pentagon Papers.”

        I also connected the post back to what is going on now, but it never got posted. About 4 1/2 years ago. Anyway, I’d love to trade emails with you. We can take this conversation “underground,” if you’d like. I’ll email Steve right away.

        Thanks for looking out for Julie & Stephen! I remember you were concerned about Julie’s dog. I remember that so well. Thank you for your kindness…hope to talk to you soon via email.
        ~Paige.

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        • oldhead:

          The essay I linked in my first comment is by Seth Farber & it is one of the most impressive pieces of journalism of 2016. I know you are a Seth Farber fan. So am I.

          I still cannot believe it’s been that long since it came out. It’s 50 pages long & worth every minute of time to read it to the end. It is about the Targeted Individual Program (which got a lot of its operational data from MK Ultra victims, first, second & third generation). The link to psychiatry is overwhelming.

          Yes, I am also a Targeted Individual (or T.I.) In other words, the data they got from me & other victims, well, they used it to turn around & torture me all over again. It started up again about eight years ago & got *really* bad just when I disappeared from this site. The real reason I disappeared.

          While you are reading. And you will love this article, oldhead (posted above). I am going to post another link to Joe Blount’s work. One of my favorite T.I.s. It’s succinct & goes into Cointelpro–another one of the intelligence community programs exposed about the same time as MK Ultra. This is very short & a beautiful piece of work.

          I have been doing Targeted Individual activism on & off for the past four years or so. Unfortunately, many T.I.s do not know the psychiatry hoax debate *at all,* but have had run-ins with psychiatry as they get labeled when they describe to people what is happening to them in the program.

          Joe Blount’s work on Cointelpro: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClFhIoY5AVzViWK8EogxklQ

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      • oldhead:

        “Why would capitalists deliberately crash their own economy? Something sinister is going on here and we need to get to the bottom of it asap.”

        Yes, we do.

        I am about smack dab in the middle of the country & can come visit you sometime in the next several months (I don’t need to crash on your couch or anything). Since…I am planning on leaving the country in the middle of 2021; I have to be out of the country when the Targeted Individual Disclosures come out. Long story.

        I am also in the middle of posting a really long message to boans (awaiting moderation) if you want to scroll down. I don’t want to take up more space than needed. I have linked any replies to my email, but M.I.A. may still have my old email for those purposes, so I’ll have to get it changed. I.e., the one Steve gave you is accurate.

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    • “One psychiatrist uses the historical and well-documented abuses of psychiatry to silence another psychiatrist, or practitioner, and learned how to crystallize their arguments from posts on MIA!!!”

      Over and over again the only thing they can prove is that they hold the power through a hierarchy system, NOT because of any other reasons.

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      • “Over and over again the only thing they can prove is that they hold the power through a hierarchy system,”

        And it fools the public every time.

        Although I *have* been having success talking to people one at a time & actually convincing them of the hoax of psychiatry. Lately, I have been put in this situation a lot. Long story. In other words, I am not the one to bring it up.

        I sum my argument up quickly, in one paragraph, and then I say, “and this conversation BORES me.”

        Activism doesn’t. Explaining the basics does.

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      • Fiachra, Sera, KateL, psmama, oldhead, & Steve:

        I just read the letters you linked as well, Fiachra.

        The Deep State has developed apps. through tech subcontractors which include the lists of people with “severe mental illnesses,” “suspected terrorist watch list” (by that I mean activists, I’m not kidding), some get on the list if they offended or want to be stalked by a wealthy, well-connected private individual, some get on the list to cover up corporate theft (the victim was robbed of their intellectual property) & some get on the list if they have had successful workman’s disability & comp. claims against their governments.

        That is not an inclusive list of victims who get on the list/s by any means. Glenn Greenwald (the author who broke the Ed Snowden story) estimates that the number of people on these lists has reached into the millions, globally.

        The information on the apps. is also shared globally, but there is a data sharing especially between the Five Eyes Countries: United States, Canada, U.K., New Zealand & Australia.

        This enables the people on any of the lists to be tracked in real time by triangulating.

        Yes, it is illegal as hell. And, again, it is global. Those of us in the 5 eyes countries (I am in the U.S., for now!) are at a distinct disadvantage since these countries have the most money to put into this A.I. panopticon infrastructure. FUN!

        Law enforcement, real estate, EMT workers, Departments of Justice employees, Community Watch Programs, Neighborhood Watch Programs & others (or subsets within, not ALL employees of such) can & do participate. Psychiatry participation is a given.

        That is why you can have a sheriff or fire department (risk reduction specialist) parked in your driveway. I am not kidding. It is called The Targeted Individual Program. And even within *that* program, the activists like to distinguish themselves from the *real* “mentally ill.”

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      • Half my face isn’t working at present an the ONLY reason I won’t go to a doctor is that I am concerned about being ‘flagged’ for ‘treatment’ by the people who don’t like the truth that I carry. Once the State is the criminals it can be difficult to trust anyone who may act in the interests of these organised criminals without even being aware of it. For example the police have me flagged for referral no matter what I attend their station for as a result of my ‘history’, you know the one created by planting a knife on me after I was spiked and collapsed?). All roads lead to Rome. Police accept instructions from doctors despite a person having documented proof of their offences. And hence the doctor simply kills them while police stay at arms length and ensure their involvement gives the appearance of lawfulness. Theres a squad of police who were treated with thalidamide that deal with doctors, the long arm of the law not so long when it comes to organised criminals in our hospitals. And AHPRA may as well be a comedy show.

        All that tax money and I can’t even go speak to a doctor as a result of the totalitarian system they have set up with MyHealth.

        So a big middle finger to anyone who says that mental health service arent obstructing the path to health. Torturing people and concealing it as ‘medicine’ tends to make people want to avoid ‘medicine’.

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        • Even worse that my partner has ended up in the ICU unit. Internal bleeding can be a real issue apparently.

          In a State where people can put drugs and other toxins into your food and it isn’t a crime the possibilities are endless. Perhaps some day the police will find that copy of the Criminal Code. I mean it was a crime when it was putting needles into strawberries but ….. thats different to putting intoxicants into people drinks to incapacitate them for public officers.

          So no point doing anything about it, just have to go with the flow and pray. Wouldn’t want to end up having proof of something the authorities don’t want to be the truth round here, you can be arrested and treated for it.

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          • My childhood friend talked me into photo documenting some of the illegal things happening to me as a Targeted Individual. I have a long way to go. It’s not my natural inclination to document abuse–it’s new, but I’ve snapped a shot of a few things going on with the Neighborhood Watch Program. My neighbors think I am a cross between Sybil & Hannibal Lector.

            You are in one of the Five Eyes Countries, Australia, right? One of my favorite TI’s is from New Zealand & says that Australia & New Zealand are even worse for TIs than the United States.

            Any method that works for killing off a TI in one of the five eyes countries, they will share with ALL the other countries with data sharing. Poisoning, running you off the road, trying to get you to commit suicide (we lose hundreds every year), disrupting your social network to try to get you homeless…and, well, they are thinking up new ways as we speak!

            They have to be sneaky about it though. If they are going to poison you, say, someone in a restaurant will get an alert on their app. that there’s a “violently mentally ill” person at booth 8. The intelligence community, then, can transfer any liability from themselves onto the stupid dupe willing to food poison you. Or poison your garden. I caught someone heading over to poison my mint plants in my back yard. I’m not kidding.

            (for the record, my only crimes are 3 speeding tickets and a smattering of broken hearts, here & there, but my handler thinks he will match me to a crime any day, cold case. Because while I was listening to Enya & studying complementary medicine during the 15 years he left me alone, my original handler–I have four handlers– was responsible for the deaths of thousand & thousands of people. One of which, I am sure, was Matt Stevenson, of M.I.A. My original handler has been with me since I was 19, at least. I am 56 tomorrow, and I know his work)

            “Handlers” is really an MK Ultra term, & I’m an MK, but the term for the abusers in the TI movement is perpetrators, or perps. I haven’t done anything with the TI movement in a year–my 4 handlers destroyed what I was trying to do, but I’M BACK!

            Here’s photo documentation of a perp trying to run TI Joe Blount off of the road. It HAS to be subtle. Very, very subtle. They cannot make it obvious. They have to have plausible deniability.

            Here goes:
            https://youtu.be/SyGxD-db73I

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          • boans:

            The Joe Blount link I posted didn’t connect. So I will use another of the same footage. This links to his YouTube page where he documents tampering with his vehicle to get him to crash his car as well.

            https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClFhIoY5AVzViWK8EogxklQ

            (btw: documenting is a great way to explain things to your friends that *do* care for you, & *do* respect you. I have clipped pictures to hardcopies of the Seth Farber essay. AND PEOPLE BELIEVE ME. The pictures are of illegal listening devices my neighbors have installed to beam right into my house. I have *crude* pictures of a Directed Energy Weapon (DEW) they propped up in their window to blast me & my husband ON Christmas Day! And if you ever do decide to take it into a court, you have the evidence ready. Expect the Disclosures of the Targeted Individual Program to come out mid 2021. BE READY!

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          • I got through Seth Farbers work you posted snowyowl. Interesting. Bit strange those flashing lights. I can think of a number of plausible explainations, though I guess thats the point your making.

            I know when I was being gaslighted by my employer I did speak to the head of the Council for Civil Liberties, who also used to be the Mayor of one of our major towns here. He had his home raided by police in relation to a series of killings of young women in his town, which has now been taken to trial. (He is not the person who was charged by the way). They had really gone to town on this guy for pointing out to the public that they did not have to provide DNA samples to police. The media were tipped off about the raid on his home, and the cameras were waiting for police to arrive to search his hime and take away his computers. He was also someone who had gathered a lot of information regading police corruption.

            I actually came across him as a result of a corrupt private investigator, who had a mention in his court case regarding his employer. He was a school psychologist and had been wrongly accused of sexual harassment, spent 9 years dragging it through the courts at a cost of about 1 million. This same private investigator (ex public officer) who the government uses to commit offences when they can’t do it themselves (it’s called contracting out) is paid for breaching procedural fairness and other bits of nasty. For example he has large vicious dog he has a habit of allowing to attack people in wheelchairs (while he videos) who have insurance claims. That sort of nice guy.

            Personally, I think much of it is just the way life is. We search for connections between objects, meanings where there are none. However, there are also those who will target individuals and then claim that the response to that targeting is paranoia. I’ve had that done to me, and I am not one to simply say “take my word for it”, the fraudulent documents and the threat to “fuking destroy” me was real. Yes they (my wife and her doctor friend) deliberately tried to push me to suicide. But get this; my wifes doctor friend had been subjected to being a targeted individual to the point that he ended up locked in a mental institution. He was good at driving me deliberately insane, knew all the moves. What he didn’t know as that he had been driven insane deliberately, and by whom. His ‘delusions’ were now confirmed as reality, he wasn’t paranoid at all. They were out to get him, and she got him real good. A sheep dip in the locked ward and he was back in business fairly quickly, getting involved in targeting others. I mean I like to think of myself as the centre of the univrse but…. to be honest I was just a bit of bait used for a stakeout. The real targeted individuals were the psychologist and her psychiatrist husband (and the doctor in the Emergency Dept as first assett obtained). I mean I can only dream of having the sort of power these people have, being able to calll police and have folk kidnapped, and then tell them to not accept documented proof of crimes while I murder someone in a hospital to cover up my wrongdoing? I can’t get away with stealing a packet of biscuits from the local supermarket, so that sort of power isn’t my field i’m afraid.

            So if they wish to drive someone insane, have them murder a whole bunch of people and then deny they had anything to do with it, poor fools in the community that let them get away with it. They really are a danger to self or others, by weaponising vulnerable individuals (who are sometimes closely watched by police and shot if they make the wrong turn). Trouble with setting people up is that it takes great skill to ensure the integrity of the test, and many of these ‘learners’ just don’t have the intelligence for it. they do have a tendency to go pear shaped.

            What I have gained in all of this is an appreciation for Gods work. The way that knife wasn’t found but yet these people went ahead with the kidnapping anyway (because they had planned it so well and weren’t going to let a mistake get in the way of that). That to me was Gid intervening and testing them. They honestly believe they weren’t being watched, and now it all works its way back around. The documents that police thought they had assisted in retrieving? If that wasn’t God at work I don’t know what was. “They will conceal truth with falsehood” and we now know who these people are.

            Insignificant that the police officer didn’t find the knife but said he did? Might be, unless he is questioned about it by someone who knows if he is lying. I, and others have no reason to lie about that, but is he a person of integrity? We could test that. And should he fail? Will we just say to him we got ya? Oh no, we will lead him well astray. Watch as his mind poisons his heart. And then we have someone to do all the dirty work none of the rest of us wants to do. And its working well, most of them are corrupt, or can be corrupted given the right circumstances. For example the psychologist (and her husband), the fear of being caught for conspiring to stupefy and commit an indictable offence namely kidnapping? Lead them to attempt to murder. Shame it was me who was ‘fuking destroyed’ in the process, but well worth it if some of you guys aren’t hurt by these people in the future. And you won’t be, we have our hooks well and truly into them now. And I guess the look in their eyes tells me they now know they are being watched, always. All that controlling behaviour gone to waste, they were really “kicking against the pricks”.

            Anyway, I digress lol. All is not as it seems. And I look forward to further revelations about the new technologies (not that i’m up on all that science stuff. I’m old school and use tried and true tools from the Book). But I’m ready. 🙂

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          • @boans

            “Personally, I think much of it is just the way life is. We search for connections between objects, meanings where there are none.”

            Good point. And that is why we will all have to wait for the disclosures before we can get any justice in the TI community. One reason, but certainly not the *only* reason I came back onto MIA, is that guess which sub-community is going to have to take the hit when the disclosures come out?

            Yes, the psych survivor movement.

            Joe Blount has better videos in terms of hard evidence. Not sure if they are good enough to get him a conviction, but the one you watched is my favorite in terms of
            videography.

            I also have hard evidence, but my pics are also probably not good enough to get a conviction, either. And I don’t think Joe has ever been in a psych ward, and I have.

            Do you see the problem? AOT for me, but not for
            any TI who has avoided Psychiatry.

            I’m going to hang onto my evidence anyway. I won’t be able to take it to court until Psychiatry is Abolished (I think it’s going to happen sooner than we think, but not as soon as we’d like), but it does convince the circle of friends I still have. The relationships my handlers haven’t destroyed.

            I can count those friends on one hand, but I have more friends than most people do. They just don’t know it yet.

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          • Good news, bad news, who knows.

            What I can say is that as the days are passing it is becoming increasingly obvious I have had a stroke. My face is paralyzed, I can’t raise my eyebrow, close my eye and have less than half my mouth working.

            To the people who are saying “Go see a doctor” I submit this. I know for a fact police have me ‘flagged’ for referral to mental health services for having the proof of being tortured and kidnapped. That was exposed some time back (see my notes in the old forums , documented as it happened). I have been threatened by the Operations Manaer of a hospital that they are going to “fuking destroy” me, and have evidence that they attempted to do just that. Our system is an all roads lead to Rome system, where I I turn up anywhere on that system I will quite possibly be ‘referred’ back to the people who have evil intent. I say this knowing that the people with a duty to respond to what was done to me have failed to perform their duty, and have in fact openly and willingly coimmitted serious criminal offences to ensure the protection of those who tortured and kidnapped me.

            Go see a doctor? Yes, my paranoia is getting in the way of that. Or as reality would have it, I simply don’t wish to provide the opportunity to frauds and slanderers to do me harm and call it medicine. A dcotor would do what they could to help ME, not the criminals operating in their midst.

            Anyway, long story short, the hope is I fall asleep and Allah sees fit to take me. I thank you all for your friendship and support over the years, even those who dislike me, I have a love for you that you will never understand. I don’t want to be liked, I want to be treated fairly.

            I will keep postiong for as long as possible, who knows I may wake from a bad dream and be back in the plave I used to live in before being ‘spiked’, tortured and kidnapped. You know, the place where me and my family paid taxes for medical services should we get sick? Which I now find so corrupted I can’t even slur to a doctor about my face not working.

            Keep at em folk.

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          • @boans:

            “What I can say is that as the days are passing it is becoming increasingly obvious I have had a stroke. My face is paralyzed, I can’t raise my eyebrow, close my eye and have less than half my mouth working.”

            I am so, so sorry. And about your partner’s health problems too. I don’t talk it about it here, but I am a Lightworker. In the Lightworking Community. At this point, with what you have just told me the only thing I can do is pray. And I *will* pray for you & your partner. I have to remember that that is A LOT! And also, all I can do. Since you are in Australia… : (

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          • Boans, my God this sounds horrible. I totally get what you are saying as I also have some crazy BS written about me that is affecting my health care services but is there someone that can go with you to the doctor or hospital? You deserve good medical care and to be treated well. I’m really hoping you will be okay.

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          • Aw Boans.
            “Good news, bad news, who knows.”
            I am crying. I’ve been trying to find some way to buy land and just be in nature for whatever time is left. Wish I could whisk you and yours away to the forests of Canada to rest. So much pain. It is rational and sane to avoid them to those of us who understand.
            I feel like I know you. I have learned so much from your posts. You’ve made my life better and safer just by sharing you. Thank you. I hope you get to post for a long time to come.

            (Nothing like running from a Grizzly to take your mind off things.)

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        • I’ll be your doc.
          I get it about not wanting to see one. Doctors don’t like to go either and that is a fact.
          Self diagnosis is usually more accurate anyway.
          Just wondering if your face has some Bell’s palsy going on? In which case, it can or I believe usually does resolve? My BIL had it but I cannot remember how long it lasted. I’m thinking it was months.
          I’m sure you’ve considered it?
          You could call up a naturopath, perhaps just to ask a Q

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          • Rosalee D:

            That’s a good idea. Have someone go with Boans to the doctor.
            I’m not thinking very clearly now….how could this work?

            (I’m an optimist. I just can’t think…)

            I mean someone to help protect him legally. His partner is also in the hospital. …hmmm…I’m always in this situation myself. I’m not sure why I can’t do better for Boans right now…

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          • Well done Sam Plover.

            My mum got Bells paulsy and half her face stopped working. I can still remember sitting with her on her birthday (Christmas Day) in the ED of our biggest hospital trying to answer questions while she was collapsing.
            It did cross my mnd and I live in hope that maybe but ….. then I think and look at it and nah, its a stroke.

            Funny but people on the internet care more than even my own family. Mind you they turned their backs on me while I was being tortured so I can’t see why they would be concerned now.

            I often think about why people do that. I mean in the scheme of things I’ve done absolutely nothing. There are people whohave done absolutely monsterous acts and we won’t allow them to be tortured, at least not without making them into “patients” first. Ask the people who run the prisons. If I have done something wrong then punish me for it. But not because you have fabricated some slander to justify your actions. Habius corpus.

            But of course what has occurred in my situation is that some tricksters managed to put one over the people at the hospital. The Community Nurse wanted to impress the ladies, and thought well, they’ve set this one up good and proper. He comes along and slanders me as a wife beater. Oh how I would like that truth tested, because it seems to me that this slander has been the basis of treating me badly, and it is simply untrue. The way that both police and the mental health workers reacted when my wife admitted attempting to plunge the knife into my chest while I was laying on the couch …. ask them. No, they don’t like the facts they were provided with, and made some other story up.

            Its even obvious on the documents as to how the story was twisted. I became my wifes nephew, my wife became me, and the nephew disappeared from the narrative.

            I went from being the ‘peacemaker’ (“Boans tried to resolve it with the family, but the family took nephews side” and then started threatening home invasion), to “has a knife for protection from an unknown source” (whatever that means and particularly interesting when one takes into consideration that the Community Nurse wasn’t informed that the police didn’t actually find the knife that had been planted. He was assuming it had and documented the fact that he knew it was planted in the first instance). Not that any of this matters, as long as someone goes to prison, and we ensure that if it’s a wrongful conviction, no one ever looks and sees what was done to obtain that conviction.

            Still, I get it.I mean these are serious criminal offences and they would get mandatory prison terms. And the crimes were committed in good faith assuming that they wouldn’t get caught, like the other times. So police assisting by perverting the course of justice to ensure they don’t get caught given all they were doing was a bit of torture and kidnapping because a psychologist got paid $200 for lying…. meh. Don’t pity me, have some pity for the people she shuffled sideways from the private clinic for ECTs. Did she ever enquire as to how they were doing, or was she more interested in when the money went into the bank? I guess we will never know, especially with police ensuring we will never know the truth as a result of their aid and abett organised criminals.

            I consider that sort of conduct absolutely predatory. Maybe its not, and I hope someone here tells me that it’s fine for a psychologist to be positioning herself where she can obtain ‘patients’ for her husband to bang over the head with electricity, and make a heap of money. She hunts and grooms the target, and once they sign on the dotted line…….bzzzzzzt, bzzzzzt. I can’t see why it would be illegal, and if her husband was a plastic surgeon maybe she could have found patients who thought themselves ugly and made referrals? So maybe they weren’t doing anything wrong by hunting in someone elses practice.

            I’m hoping my partner is released from hospital really soon. They have managed to stop the bleeding. I don’t want the cat chewing bits off me if I end up dead in here for days lol. I’ve gven it heaps of kibbles but it has this strange look on its face, like it’s sizing up my leg for a nibble.

            All of your prayers are greatfully accepted. I’m in the best of hands 🙂 Truly He knows what has been in my heart the whole time, and i’ve no doubt He is disappointed in some, and possibly angry at others. Where God is concerned I will not be punished for the wrongdoing of anyone else. Unlike here in my State who will ‘fuking destroy’ anyone who simply has the audacity to make a legitimate complaint about being assaulted (tortured and kidnapped) by thugs working for the State. Well done people, you do our Nation proud. And make Bashar al Assad look like Mahatma Ghandi.

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          • @boans

            “I’m hoping my partner is released from hospital really soon. They have managed to stop the bleeding. I don’t want the cat chewing bits off me if I end up dead in here for days lol. I’ve gven it heaps of kibbles but it has this strange look on its face, like it’s sizing up my leg for a nibble.”

            HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!! I may be a Lightworker, but I’ve got a WICKED sense of humor. I also drop the ‘F’ bomb on many an occasion & watch my fellow Lightworker’s lips twist in a lemony disapproval, well not all of them, some of them are as tough as me.

            Sometimes the F word is what’s needed to do the trick. ‘Specially when you say it real loud & forceful like, so the consonal K’ goes up the F’s (gasp!)

            HANNIBAL LECTOR KITTY….NO, DON’T DO IT!!!

            oh yeah, Hannibal Lector was a psychiatrist….”he was a garden variety Manic-Depressive…his therapy was going nowhere….”

            Hey, Hannibal Lector was at least genuine!

            Kitty, NO, don’t DO IT!

            (and yes, you and your partner are in my prayers starting when I read about your health problems…and just so I leave this on a funny note. I am CONVINCED that Prime Creator has a wicked sense of humor & speaks through the comedians, like Robin Williams. Robin Williams could do a mean skit on Hannibal Lector Kitty!)

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        • BOANS — IMPORTANT

          So I just noticed this, I’ve been offline for a couple days.

          A friend who had Bells & recovered is sure that’s what it is, otherwise after 2 days you would likely be dead, not still writing prolifically.

          This is his recovery blog which he said I could post (it already helped someone else). I’m posting this at the “other place” too so you’re sure to see it one way or the other:

          And yes I actually know a 7th Day Adventist. 🙂

          Bell’s Palsy Blog

          FIRST SYMPTOMS

          On Thursday evening, March 20, 2008 my left eye gradually felt irritated and started watering as I sat at the computer. I also had to clean my eyeglasses where my left eyebrow had apparently dropped down and brushed the middle of the lens. Those were the only symptoms I noticed on that first day- an irritated, watery eye and a smeared lens.

          WONDERING WHY

          There was no physical trauma to the face, but I had eaten quite a bit of sweet water ice throughout the day. Since diabetes is a known cause in at least a few cases of what was eventually diagnosed as Bell’s palsy, perhaps a spike in blood sugar did something, although my blood sugar has never been suspect in any other condition. There is also an accepted theory that Bells is caused by a virus. I had been getting over a hoarse cough and stuffy-runny nose that, although somewhat bothersome, never quite turned into the flu. I wondered if it was not an upper respiratory infection that I may have picked up volunteering at the animal shelter.

          AT 19 HOURS – A LITTLE ISSUE WITH AN INFLATOR STEM

          The following day was Good Friday, 2008. I stayed home and did not do very much. During the 4 p.m. hour I happened to pick up a little inflatable plastic pillow and attempted to fill it with air. The valve did not appear to be working properly, an it was more work than expected. As I blew into the inflator stem I realized that the left corner of my lips kept leaking air and that it helped if I lightly pinched my lips tighter with my fingers. I never gave the incident a thought for the next 2 and a half hours.

          AT 21-1/2 HOURS – SOMETHING IS DEFINITELY WRONG

          Shortly after 6:30 I realized that my left eye lid was not responding properly when I attempted to wink. Perhaps I felt a subtle difference in the course of regularly, involuntary blinking that made me check closer, but when I looked in the mirror the reflection confirmed that my facial movements had become asymmetrical. My eyes were no longer blinking in perfect synchronization. Indeed, I could not make them blink together.

          QUICK DECISIONS

          My immediate thoughts turned to stroke. Perhaps it was a mini-stroke, a transient ischemic attach, or maybe it was the beginning of the Big One. So, I phoned my wife, who is frequently far away from home, and informed her that I would be going to the hospital emergency room for a possible stroke. Somewhere in the same time frame, I also called my family doctor, told the answering service I was paralyzed. Not too surprisingly, I received a quick cell phone callback from the doctor, himself. I explained the symptoms, and he agreed I should proceed to the ER. I was grateful for his official referral to the hospital. After all, if you do not get a referral from your primary care physician and the insurance company decides your trip to the ER was not a real emergency, your financial liability could become financially catastrophic.

          PAUSE FOR REFLECTION

          In high school one of my friends commented that life is just one big shit sandwich and every day is another bite. Years later this was embodied in the more popular bumper sticker: Life is a bitch, then you die. For some reason, I seriously considered the validity of both of these maxims.

          AT THE ER

          By 7:20 I had parked the car and found my way to the ER clerk. Fortunately I had my Adult Basic working poor people’s insurance card and the check-in form was short. Partial Facial paralysis, I believe, is what I wrote down.

          First, a nurse brought me to a room and took vitals. Then my sister and her husband entered the room, as if by magic. My wife had called them, but did not tell them which hospital I would be at. I was glad their first guess was correct.

          Dr. K attended. She had me open and close both eyes, and then, try to wink on each side, smile, frown, pull her hands with both of mine, push away both of her hands, walk on my toes, walk on my heels.

          “It doesn’t look like a stroke. I think you have Bell’s palsy,” she said. Dr. K went on to explain that her own husband was just coming off of Bell’s palsy, taking medicines, and physical therapy, and that now he is so proud when he can simply wink at her.

          Just for good measure, Dr. K sent me to the Somatom CT scanner where they made a 16-slice X-ray study of my brain. There was nothing that looked like a stroke, but she did notice one area that was lighter in color than all the rest.

          “A specialist will need to look at that”, I was told.

          Around 10:00 I got the steroid, Predisone and some Acylavar to combat inflammation and possible viruses, respectively. After that, I was out the door and was truly astonished when I got home and discovered that the pharmacies at CVS and Pathmark were already closed. It was late at night, and I was still wide awake, running on adrenalin.

          DAY THREE

          Saturday, March 22 I was at church, as usual. My telephone prayer partner, Jason, greeted me and I told him that, after he prayed for me Friday morning, my day ended in the emergency room getting a CAT scan. The elders (who were all younger than me) were all very concerned, and they were nice enough to have a special circle of prayer for me in the church office.

          The problem was as plain as my face. I could no more wink my left eye than I could stand there and simultaneously raise both feet off the floor. You should try it sometime. No, really. That is exactly what it was like.

          My speech was sloppy because I could not work my lips. It was particularly difficult trying to pronounce any word containing the letters F or V. My lips just would not seal on the left side.

          DAYS FOUR-FIVE

          Sunday, I had a quiet, paralyzed day at home, then Monday I went to see my primary care physician, as directed.

          “I thought it sounded like Bell’s when you called on Friday,” he said.

          “But I wanted you to go to the ER, just to be sure.”

          He brought out his book and showed me that the Prednisone dosage prescribed by the hospital was all wrong. Instead of taking a 50 mg pill daily, it should have been 80 mg for 3 days, then 60 for 3 days, then 40 for 3 days, then 20 for 3 days. He said the antiviral wouldn’t do anything, but I could still take it 5 times daily for a week, as recommended at the hospital. Bottom line: for the first two days I had taken only 63% of the recommended Prednisone.

          DAYS TEN through THIRTEEN

          By the next Saturday, the tenth day, March 29, I had regained about 50% of my facial movement, perhaps thanks to the drugs, but who really knows? Each day, Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday saw improvement compared the day before.

          On Sunday and Monday in particular I experienced maybe half a dozen instances of the left eyebrow twitching rapidly, and I took this to be a good sign of returning function. The strangest symptom of all was that the inside of my left cheek had a most unusual metallic taste. Since I was getting better, I accepted that, too, as a good sign. Was it because I was absorbing Prednisone at that particular location? Was the skin releasing toxins at that site? Who knows?

          By Tuesday, eleven days after the onset of symptoms, I could close my left eye at will, but it’ was too slow and resisted closing

          Over days 10-13 there was a pattern where I felt I had perfect functioning as soon as I woke up from a restful overnight sleep, but that I tended to deteriorate a little bit throughout the day, even though each day was, admittedly, an improvement over each previous day.

          AN OUNCE OF PREVENTION

          Since most cases of Bell’s have no known cause, I thought I might as well take heed to the specific articles of diet that are said to cause disorders of the nerves. Bell’s palsy is a disorder of the seventh cranial nerve. That’s the nerve that passes through the narrow eustachian tube from the ear into the side of the face. From there, it branches out like a large complex tree all over the entire side of the face.

          The seventh-cranial nerve works only muscle, not bones, not joints, not ligaments.

          So, what is bad for nervous health? According to one Seventh-day Adventist book, Counsels On Diet And Foods, stimulating foods and spicy hot foods are bad for the nervous system. This literature includes even cinnamon as a hot spice, so I decided to go off of my favorite daily cholesterol elixir: a quarter teaspoon of cinnamon daily, in applesauce, cereal, or whatever.

          I had been eating some particularly hot vegetarian chicken wings over the previous few weeks. That, and I had a few pickles (this would be laughable to most people, but the book takes it seriously, so I will, too).

          One of the biggest breakthroughs came when I turned on the satellite dish and caught a Master of Public Health who informed the audience that aspirin binds both dietary folic acid and folate in the cells, themselves. Folic acid was only recently added (a few years ago) to the list of vitamins and nutrients that must be restored to white flour because folic acid deficiency has been proven to cause spina bifida, a particularly nasty deformity of the nervous system. So, there went my daily baby aspirin, too. No more daily aspirin, unless the risk of stroke and heart disease overtake the current risk of a Bells palsy relapse.

          Then there was the Skinny tea I got at the dollar store. It supposedly promotes weight loss through the use of weird herbs and black pepper. Black pepper? Yep, that’s on the black list, too.

          No more hot, spicy, stimulating foods! I even have to wonder about the vegetarian products that contain texturized soy or wheat proteins. One book (not Adventist) which condemns these texturized proteins is called, rather ominously, Excitotoxins, The Taste That Kills.

          I even stopped my chewable multi-vitamin multi-mineral supplement because it happens to contain aspartame, which I do not believe in. Aspartame is said to include, or decompose into, methyl alcohol, the bad stuff that can make a person go permanently blind overnight. It also breaks down into formaldehyde which preserves dead biology specimens and living tissue, equally well.

          DAY 14, WEDNESDAY, APRIL 02, 2008.

          I was already very satisfied with my recovery when I discovered a new way to test my functioning. The weak eyelid had been closing nicely for a few days now and keeping the eye well lubricated. This is arguably the very most important consideration throughout the entire course of Bells, so I shouldn’t complain. But, on this morning I found a more direct test of function that tells a more complete story for anyone.

          It goes like this. Close your eye tightly, and then use your fingertips to test the muscle strength by gently pulling against the tense eyelid muscles, top and bottom, to manually open the eyelid. In my case the good eye put up plenty of resistance, but the weak eye had practically none. Although closing somewhat properly, the real story is that the muscles are acting as though they are no more than 5 or 10 percent as strong as they should be. Naturally we know it is not really the muscles that we are talking about, but the nerve endings which supply them with contraction signals.

          DAY 15, THURSDAY, APRIL 03, 2008.

          Healing has continued steadily and I am very pleased to say that as of this evening, it would be difficult for anyone to detect a remaining trace of my palsy. The face movements may not be absolutely symmetrical, but I suspect any differences are within the normal range of variability found among the general population. It is not as easy to close the left eye, and when I wink, the left cheek does not rise quite as high as it should but, overall, I could get by this way if I had to. The lips work properly, speech is fine, the eye is staying properly lubricated. I don’t look like I have a problem. Even the blinks are coordinated. That’s saying a lot, since the left lid had consistently been lagging behind for the past two weeks whenever I tried to blink.

          [Fully recovered today.]

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  6. Hi, Sera, Thank you for a great article.

    I have a story that I’d love to share with Dr. Jaffe, not that he would listen.

    Yesterday morning I looked out my bedroom window and saw a city fire department vehicle in the parking lot of my building. On the door of the vehicle it said “Community Risk Reduction”. I didn’t then and still don’t have any idea why this vehicle was in the parking lot. There was a woman in the driver’s seat talking on the phone.

    Because of my long history of being taken to the hospital in an ambulance, accompanied by the police, who show up first, and deposited in the crisis intervention unit against my will, my brain came up with a theory about why that vehicle was there. My brain said: The police are on their way, as well as the ambulance. The woman in the community risk reduction vehicle is on the phone with them planning how they’re going to get me out of my apartment and into the ambulance without exposing themselves in the event that I have covid-19.

    I tried to convince myself otherwise. I tried to tell myself that the reasons for this vehicle to be in the parking lot had nothing to do with me and that probably soon the woman would start the car and drive away. That didn’t keep me from going into a full body PTSD response, literally shaking, standing at the window and peering through the blinds, then getting back in bed and curling up in the fetal position and trying to forget what was happening, then back to the window, for an hour. Finally I went from bed to window and saw that the car was gone. I wasn’t so much relieved as spent. The relief came later.

    Like the book says, The Body Keeps the Score, and mine had no doubt that I should be very afraid in that situation. Yes, those hospitalizations/incarcerations have left a mark. I related this story to a compassionate friend of mine who happens not to have a psych history, and she suggested that if that happened again, I could go outside and politely ask the person in the vehicle why they were there. I thought, I couldn’t do that, not in the state I was in. Maybe it’s something you have to have experienced to understand. That’s what keeps me coming back to this website – the wisdom and validation of people who get it.

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    • Thanks so much for sharing that story, KateL. Yes, I guess one of the things I wish for most is less than people fully “get it,” because that is just impossible when someone hasn’t been in it… and moreso that they get that they can’t and don’t get it. Asking you to go out and ask the people you’re desperately wanting to avoid coming to get you is kind of absurd, even if it makes some “logical” sense from the vantage point of one who already feels sure they weren’t there for you.

      That said, I *have* had some (minimal) luck using exercises that ask people to consider losses for *themselves* without first telling them that those losses would mirror incarceration in a psych facility. If there were any way to just get people to understand enough about how painful loss is for them, and how much smaller that loss is than what is experienced in a psych facility… maybe they could at least have a little more humility in that regard.

      However, often any humility found is fleeting for the sake of keeping things running… as another commenter suggested above. I continue to hang on to the fight that there must be some way, though…

      -Sera

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      • Katel, I concur with Sera.

        It seems absurd to suggest for you to check out the unfolding happenings outside.
        It actually sounds like someone practicing “psychology”, although hoping that wasn’t the case. Perhaps wanting you to feel “safer”.

        I am sorry that you felt so unsafe, and that feeling is most natural, it is just difficult to deal with the fear.

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        • Thank you, Sam. I think a lot of people, hearing a snippet of info like the story I told my friend, go into advice-giving mode. Yes, I think she probably did want me to feel safer, like I had some agency/control over my environment.

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      • Thank you for your response, Sera. Yes, accepting that people don’t get it because they can’t get it, because they haven’t been there, is painful but maybe necessary. Whenever I’ve tried to explain the loss to someone who hasn’t experienced it, any validation I get is usually couched in a “yes, but…” type of statement. “Yes, but that’s in the past…”. Not according to my nervous system.
        I didn’t realize Jaffe is not a Dr. That he’s given a platform is depressing. Not that most psychiatrists deserve a platform either.

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      • I am posting this again for Kate L & psmama, especially. I was very alarmed by your posts, Kate L & psmama. I wish I knew *then* what I know *now* when our Matt was in trouble.

        (and, Sera, this is why I am especially upset about Matt’s suicide, specifically. Matt was a Targeted Individual, I am sure of it). Again, I will link Seth Farber’s essay on Psychiatry, the Deep State, and Targeted Individuals right now–it’s 50 pages & it did take me a long time to read it, but it’s a gem of journalism. It should win awards!!)

        https://everydayconcerned.net/2016/12/12/seth-farber-ph-d-the-psychiatric-metanarrative-targeted-individuals-and-the-deep-state-a-response-to-the-new-york-times/

        The Deep State has developed apps. through tech subcontractors which include the lists of people with “severe mental illnesses,” “suspected terrorist watch list” (by that I mean activists, I’m not kidding), some get on the list if they offended or want to be stalked by a wealthy, well-connected private individual, some get on the list to cover up corporate theft (the victim was robbed of their intellectual property) & some get on the list if they have had successful workman’s disability & comp. claims against their governments.

        That is not an inclusive list of victims who get on the list/s by any means. Glenn Greenwald (the author who broke the Ed Snowden story) estimates that the number of people on these lists has reached into the millions, globally.

        The information on the apps. is also shared globally, but there is a data sharing especially between the Five Eyes Countries: United States, Canada, U.K., New Zealand & Australia.

        This enables the people on any of the lists to be tracked in real time by triangulating.

        Yes, it is illegal as hell. And, again, it is global. Those of us in the 5 eyes countries (I am in the U.S., for now!) are at a distinct disadvantage since these countries have the most money to put into this A.I. panopticon infrastructure. FUN!

        Law enforcement, real estate, EMT workers, Departments of Justice employees, Community Watch Programs, Neighborhood Watch Programs & others (or subsets within, not ALL employees of such) can & do participate. Psychiatry participation is a given.

        That is why you can have a sheriff or fire department (risk reduction specialist) parked in your driveway. I am not kidding. It is called The Targeted Individual Program. And even within *that* program, the activists like to distinguish themselves from the *real* “mentally ill.”

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    • Oh, and one other thing, KateL… DJ is definitely not a doctor. He’s really mostly just a guy with a family member who has struggled and is diagnosed, and who has a ton of time on his hands to get Op-eds published allllll over the place. In fact, looking at his website with its list of places he’s been published or interviewed is one of the most depressing things I’ve done in a while…

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    • “On the door of the vehicle it said “Community Risk Reduction””

      The one to worry about Katel is the Fast Action Response Team (FART), their services stink. 🙂

      And I heard they shut down the Sometimes Helpful Intervention Team because they weren’t sometimes helpful, just a big steaming pile

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    • KateL I felt that with every fiber of my being. I too have had those exact experiences/responses when the Sherriff in the town I live in park on my street during slow days. People try to say, “but have you done anything to make them come this time” and I think, all I did before was stop taking seroquel before because it made me want to die and they came and hauled me off. Hauled me off because I was doing better.
      I’m sorry you had to go through that the other day.

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      • Thank you, psmama. I’m sorry for what you’ve been through also – especially that it happened when you were doing better and making your own decisions about what to/what not to ingest. Like you, I know that I don’t have to have “done anything to make them come” for my nervous system to decide, “they’re coming.”

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    • I have been avoiding going to the dentist. The modern medical field of psychiatry is a the equivalent of blood letting why not dentistry? I now realize one reason why there are people who refuse life saving cancer treatments. When you have been lied to, involuntary committed, poisoned by a whole prestigious medical profession and they continue to do it to millions of people it’s difficult to feel safe and trust other people. The irony is that psychiatrists would say my paranoia is a sign of my illness. When really it’s a sign of how they abused me.

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      • I can identify with this on many levels. That is like PTS. “post traumatic syndrome”.
        When in an ER or a dentist chair, you feel vulnerable and you remember what being vulnerable to hierarchy is about.
        The dentist out of all other professions is most likely the least harmful, but I completely understand the reminders.
        And no, it is NOT “paranoia”.
        It’s just sad that a huge majority does not get the healthcare they equally qualify for.
        Psych made sure of that. Doctors are simply psychiatrists in disguise now.
        They are all psychiatrists.
        They are all sick of big pharma, of their hierarchy roles, but refuse to do anything about it. It is easier for them to just blame the patient to be faulty.

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  7. I must admit at the beginning of these measures I thought about everyone else “this is your punishment” for ignoring the plight of the traumatised and distressed, preyed upon by psychiatry, for decades. But what it really displays is people’s slavish following of medical advice. Reading Wilhelm Reich’s The Murder of Christ has really bought home to me the seriousness of the cover up of real health science and understanding. The book was written in 1950, a much darker time. Now we at least have Somatic Experiencing that is teaching Reich’s discoveries to so many without even mentioning Reich. Reich, like myself, was very outspoken. A fearless critic of societies ignoring of real cures and of rejection of responsibility. I see this whole “measures” situation as having come out of that. But as the Chinese say “Who’s to say what’s good or bad?”. I wonder if ultimately so many people have had their faith in “what the experts say” badly shaken. Good !

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    • Michael,

      I hear you. It’s really hard to know who on earth to trust now – or most of the time – as so many different interests cloud it all, and drive dishonesty, force, marginalization, and so on. That said, I think that’s a whole nother topic unto itself that doesn’t really negate that this may be a learning opportunity re: psychiatric oppression as well. Though, of course, psychiatric oppression is rooted back to many interests, dishonesty, force, marginalization, too.

      -Sera

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  8. It is acceptable to rage against psychiatry, but until we can confront Uncle Touchy or Auntie Don’t-listen-to-him-he’s-crazy AND have justice within the activist communities themselves we are only helping pave the way for the next people buyer. We must first confront our own complicity and prejudice. The ways we marginalize those we want to empower by forcing them, to earn a right to be heard with credentials, networking or self-promotion. Either we are worth hiring for our “pseudo-knowledge” too, or we aren’t. If you feel it would be beneath you to hire a survivor for survival teaching during COVID? Or not ethical to hire someone who has hired you? maybe ask yourself why. For me, direct feedback is respect. (I wish writing had tone-o-vision.)

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    • Thanks for reading and commenting, o.o. I’m not sure I’m following every sentence you wrote in this comment (the last couple of questions in particular), but I certainly agree that there’s a ton of issues in our own movement, including internalized psychiatric oppression that so many continue to spit back out onto others, as well as many other times of systemic oppression… And it seems that it is really, really hard for us to find a way out of that in said activist communities for a variety of reasons.

      -Sera

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      • I’m just tired of running into the same themes and barriers here as I fight everywhere.

        (And please know that I love your writing and the way you respond in the comment section. I feel heard when you speak. I just don’t natural put all the nice stuff in that people sometimes need. I try, but it comes off sarcastic.)

        Anyways, I can’t say what I need to say and protect those with more power who are trying to help from shame at the same time. I can’t demand better without being labeled as difficult or manipulative any more than I could with abuses within psychiatry. And though I know the two are very different, my experience has been that this movement has it’s own “acceptable” drug pushers and users who don’t mention risks and when there are side effects refuse to acknowledge them. There are money changers of all kinds here. Plus this movement has a sexual assault cover up too. And it’s who you know and how well you can schmooze and enough education to write grant proposals. Maybe I’m just jealous. Or maybe until there is restorative justice here than we are similar to psychiatry and in the worst ways. I kind of expect more from us. I’ll even go first. Lay it all bare so we can fix it.

        If those with money and power here are blind to or feel powerless against the ways they are reinforcing the prejudices that mute us… then it’s pointless, maybe even dangerous to stay. But where else could I meet people who get it like the comment section does? I’m not one to keep silent for long, but when I push for more representation of voices like mine I am met with the same “yes but… one of your kind one time did this thing that made me scared and liability and funding blah blah blah.” Or just silence, which is even more hurtful. Kind of a teary smile but never any concrete follow up. That’s what I mean by being hired by those I’ve hired. It is not a nice feeling and hard to explain exactly. You know that feeling of being good enough to volunteer but when it comes time for you to be paid everyone’s eyes get shifty and everyone suddenly has somewhere else to be? Or knowing you are the token survivor and you should be grateful we let you come at all. That’s why I want to be paid. Proof of equality, to remove the “ethics” crap. Plus it’s much easier to be professional when I am paid with more than placation. In case the world forgot… I need to eat too.

        Like a family, we just don’t talk about some things. Like a family the person who feels injured takes a further hit for pointing a finger. Like a family, if you take action to hold the rich uncle accountable you probably won’t be family for long and even if your not kicked out you’ll leave because it just hurts too much to watch everyone act like nothing is wrong. And the uncle isn’t free to make amends either because he needs to eat, and no one will speak up because the uncle is the meal ticket. So you forfeit your place and spend time creeping the bushes at family reunions, because where else is there to go? And you tell yourself it is freedom to not have to play nice anymore. And the research has proven that fasting is good for “depression”.

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      • Why OH are you asking me this question? In this way? It feels like being baited.

        You don’t know me. Without seeing your face or hearing tone, the words alone have a mean feel in my stomach. I’m not very good at interpreting intent, so maybe we could meet via zoom and you could ask me again and I could answer. There is too much misunderstanding in word alone.

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          • It would have been easier to have all the info, but thank you. I’m crap at reading between the lines. And no one is meaner then the thoughts in my head that fill the gaps. I am always interested in organizing, I do what I can, but this time the change has to start at home. And I’m not someone that others play well with or stoop to listen to. I’d get run out of town if I hadn’t already left. lol.

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      • Activism is impossible to sustain if you don’t have a safe enough corner to fight from.

        I’m not Anti-psychiatry! I am ANTI-CORRUPTION!

        Those with the least protection (money, status, family, education) are also asked to take the biggest risks while simultaneously being sold cures from every side. Does it make me angry that one retreat with Sean Blackwell is More than half of what I earn a year? (yes) Or that I have to work a day and a half for one therapy session, feldenkais, etc.? (yes) That I can’t get a loan for the education that may give me a shot because in my country disability cannot be counted as income. (yes) And when I do work, say peer support, the pay per hour is less than McDonalds without a contract or guaranteed hours leaving me still tied to disability. If I can never ever get to safety then meds or dying starts to make a lot of sense. Why should I stay conscious if there is no point? No hope?

        The painful truth is that the more marginalized I feel the more reason I give others to marginalize me. Our voices are left in the comment section in favor of professionals who can only imagine what it feels like to be so marginalized you can’t keep from screaming in frustration. And I don’t even think most people, from their place of relative comfort, realize the ways they are complicit. Please do not confuse my moral obligation to call out injustice as I see it for promoting psychiatry! And then I get thinking that maybe the professionals and allies who are afraid to give me the floor or an equal footing or a paycheck have a really valid point. If I had found an island of safety to retreat to, I’d protect it too. If I had to deal with me I’d be afraid too. I am growing more angry and aggressive the longer I fight without a break! I’m not willing to keep pretending I am grateful for a chance that never leads me closer to having my own safe corner of the world. Truth is people like me, when it’s all over, don’t come out with a little farm or a little nest egg, we end up back in a nursing home or a group home alone and drugged. We end up back where we came from. All the pats on the head aren’t going to change that. I used to fight believing that at least my death would make a difference for those still trapped inside treatment. But we aren’t winning! And the professionals with agendas are here too giving us one story while bragging to those they respect for real of the 6 figure profit they made in 7 months off clients like me. So activism is becoming torture, but Another suicide is just more proof for the world that psychiatry is needed. And I HATE THAT enough to stay alive. That’s how mean I am.

        I know you mean well OH and others. I am prickly too. I know we are fighting for the same freedoms, but please I need a little space right now to get back up from the last assault.

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        • “Activism is impossible to sustain if you don’t have a safe enough corner to fight from.”

          Then find that corner first O.O. I’ve no idea where that is for you, but I know mine came in knowing a few things. That there is a God, that I will die when He decides, not some doctor who thinks he is god in an Emergency Dept. That if I don’t let the poison that has been created in my head by others into my heart, i’m good. Don’t act out of anger, but out of justice.

          I’ve told this story before about a samurai who came home to find everything he had destroyed, his wife raped and murdered, kids dead, and his home burned to the ground. He found out who did it from the villagers and hunted the man down. They fought and he beat the man to the ground and as he went to cut his head off the man spat in his face. The samurai put his sword away and walked off. The people watching asked him “Why did you not kill him after what he did to you?” to which he replied “Because I was angry”.

          I really hope you find that place because you have something to offer the rest of us trying to bring about some justice in this unjust place.

          One other thing I heard that helped me. Don’t be asking your higher power to take you out of Hell, ask it to come into it with you. Those who witness the power of that are truly impressed.

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        • O.O.
          I think many feel as you do.

          I can guarantee you that within the oppressors themselves, there is a shitload of unhappy people.
          Sure they have some cash to soften the blow, but does it really? Nope, I know that cash don’t buy happiness.

          But it satisfies me to a great extent that those nurses dishing out meanness to clients, are not happy.
          Yep, I get shadenfreude. It gives me power.

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        • Our voices are left in the comment section in favor of professionals who can only imagine what it feels like to be so marginalized you can’t keep from screaming in frustration.

          Yes but you’re talking about MIA. MIA isn’t “the movement” or anything close.

          As for “corruption,” I would say that to be “corrupt” something first must have integrity. So with psychiatry we aren’t fighting “corruption,” but outright fraud.

          I’ll email you at some point.

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  9. The force, loss of rights, drugging, mistreatment, abuse and so on inherent in mental hospitalizations is traumatic and worsens outcomes but I think the harm is much more systemic than that. It’s not just the obvious atrocities it’s the whole thing. Isolating people in a hospital doesn’t produce benefits. It results in worsened social relationships not even counting the stigma.
    I doubt hospitalizations even truly voluntary ones do more good than harm.

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    • Berzerk,

      I’m a little unsure if I’m following what you’re meaning with the 9/11 video? In terms of my “expertise” on various experiences in the “mental health” system or with emotional distress… I’m someone who has struggled frequently with suicidal thoughts, been held in a psychiatric facility against my will, seen visions, had DCF called on me for vague worries that I’d be a danger to my kids because of sharing the experience of seeing visions in the past, etc. etc. I also have worked in different support roles, including for the last 13 years, as a part of the Western Mass Recovery Learning Community where we facilitate a number of groups related to suicide, hearing voices, and beyond, and also facilitate trainings on those and other topics. Don’t know if that helps?

      Thanks,

      Sera

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      • Sera:

        “Had DCF called on me for vague worries that I’d be a danger to my kids because of the experience of seeing visions in the past,”

        WOW! I am not a mother. But the fact that someone called DCF on you makes me so angry I do not have words (what? me with no words?).

        I am often in the odd position of having to explain how this is no longer a Democracy for *some* to the ones trying to take my civil liberties. But, again, I am not a mother. I cannot even imagine.

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      • “I’m someone who has struggled frequently with suicidal thoughts”

        Can you explain why? Why do you want to kill yourself?

        What are you trying to escape from? And how does having that attitude make you better equipped at helping others who are having difficulty coping with “reality”?

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        • Berzerk,

          Well, for what it’s worth, I want to offer that I think it’s best to be really cautious about asking those sorts of questions, especially without asking for consent first. Even people who share pieces of their story publicly aren’t obligated to entertain questions that are intrusive or feel entitled to information that person isn’t up for sharing.

          That said, I have put myself in this public forum, and am pretty comfortable talking about suicide, so I feel okay going ahead and answering.

          I have wanted to kill myself for a number of different reasons that have ranged from:

          * Wanting my emotional pain to stop (moreso, if you will, wanting my pain to ‘die’ rather than my body… which is a way of thinking about things that I’ve learned through my co-worker, Caroline, and really resonates for me)

          * Wanting the endless drudgery that requires so much of my energy and feels so pointless to be over… The waking up, the brushing my hair, the showering, the dressing, etc. … Over and over and over, often for no discernible purpose.

          * Knowing that whatever pain I’m experiencing is temporary or will shift, and that all my fears of what people are saying about me/thinking about me are probably inaccurate should I only bother to ‘reality check’ them.. But also just being tired of that emotional roller coaster, and having to live in that place of worry/anxiety so much of the time.

          * Money. Feeling like my debt will never be resolved, and will only get worse and worse, and feeling like I have no way out.

          There are other reasons, but those come the easiest at the moment. And while I can apply ‘wanting to escape’ to each of those in their way… I also want to offer that when you ask, ‘What are you trying to escape from” it feels like you’re making an assumption or applying your own lens/meaning to my experience, and of all the things you said, that made me least want to respond. For whatever that’s worth.

          As to how it makes me better equipped… Well, as Oldhead said somewhere above, I really don’t paint myself as an ‘expert’ in general (Well, he was talking about my not painting myself as an expert on non-existent things which is certainly true, but also I generally try to avoid the language of ‘expert’ in general.) But I absolutely do think having ‘been there’ is a really useful tool. It helps me think of questions to ask that might support someone to come up with their own meaning. It makes me a less threatening person to someone else who’s struggling similarly, because I also know what it’s like to have someone step in and take all my power away because I said words like “suicide.” It makes it easier for me to validate other people’s feelings of this nature because I have internal experience to draw from, as well. And while I don’t know what will work for someone else, I’ve had enough experience trying different paths that I know something about at least some of them which can also be useful.

          Hope that helps.

          -Sera

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    • Willoweed,

      Absolutely, I totally agree… As with most if not all types of systemic oppression, society tends to identify the most obvious, outrageous things and talk about stopping those (or at least hiding them better)… But the more insidious bits of oppression – especially the ones that are most effective at getting someone to internalize the oppression – can be what makes so damn hard to find one’s way back.

      -Sera

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      • We are also encouraged to group people into “those oppressive bad people” vs. “the rest of us,” rather than recognizing that all of us participate in some ways in maintaining oppressive systems. It’s easier to maintain the status quo if we can blame “those other people” for being the cause of the “bad stuff,” so we can pretend that if only we get rid of the “bad people,” the rest of us “good people” can get on with doing good. And of course, “the mentally ill” (as conveniently defined by the status quo) are often put into that scapegoat role of the “bad people” who are causing all the problems and need to be “controlled” for “their own good” or the good of society.

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        • Well, I think this is true to a point, but I think we have to also be cautious to not – say – equate the oppressive nature of the work of people in clinical roles with, say, the existence of people who get incarcerated in the system. Many of us do end being cogs in the system, and as was said in a preceding comment, much of psychiatric oppression isn’t about the obvious stuff, but the more subtle every day that many of us do somehow play a role in… But it’s not all equal exactly.

          Thanks for commenting!

          -Sera

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          • Sera & Steve:

            You both would be/and are great at helping survivors with Systemic Stockholm. The love of the captives (survivors) for their captors (in this case the MHS). It is a time to be so gentle. I was not even aware there was a critique to psychiatry out there until I was 50 years old (I am 56 now, in a few days). Certainly, all the many times I freed myself from the grip of the Deep State in my teens, 20s and 30s (that is going on again, but I can handle myself), I needed gentleness.

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        • all of us participate in some ways in maintaining oppressive systems

          Yes and no. Most people have no real power, at least as individuals. But to the extent that we vote, pay taxes and fail to actively confront the system with every waking breath I suppose we could all be considered to be “maintaining oppression.”

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          • I was talking more about perpetuating and supporting habits, ideas and institutions through our training, mostly on an unconscious level. I contrast this to the idea that somehow it’s always “those other people” who are racists, sexist, violent, abusive, etc. Naturally, there are people who are more or less aware of these tendencies and are more or less active in combatting both the internalized and external forms of oppression, such as not allowing ourselves or others to blame “the mentally ill” or black people or even gun owners as the “cause” of violence, but instead reminding everyone that violence is possible in any of us, and its more frequent emergence in our society is not caused by some external force or group of “other people,” but is actually a function of the society in which we are all participating (however voluntarily or involuntarily).

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          • “The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.” Orwell

            Guy was a paranoid idiot but….. lets get on with making America Great Again. I would suggest that until Australia ‘treats’ all the mental illness in our Indigenous communities we are going to have a constant visual reminder of our history. That needs to be denied and obliterated. We said sorry, now get over it and stop being naughty and we’ll stop putting you in prison and driving you to suicide with the hopeless situation you find yourselves in. “it’s your own fault”.

            Some power? Yep, the button on the tv remote that says “off” however limited is something lol

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      • the more insidious bits of oppression – especially the ones that are most effective at getting someone to internalize the oppression – can be what makes so damn hard to find one’s way back.

        This is why — even though lithium ended up killing her — our late comrade Julie Greene said she didn’t consider drugs to be the biggest danger of psychiatry, but the self-hatred inculcated by a psychiatric label, which is like a psychic leg iron.

        The political function of psychiatry is to trick people into seeing their reactions to oppression as something wrong with them, rather than a sign that they are humen.

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        • “The political function of psychiatry is to trick people into seeing their reactions to oppression as something wrong with them, rather than a sign that they are humen.”

          See Seligmans Dogs as to how to induce learned helplessness. To see their reactions to oppression is going to have zero effect on the outcome of what is causing their pain? Some of the human experiments that have grown out of that research have produced some interesting results. (applying the electric shocks to the heads of humans rather than the feet of canines). Now that my government has paved the way for experiments on teenagers we might actually get somewhere with it. Unethical to do it to dogs these days, but ….. we have found ways past ethics committees in my State.

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        • Yes Oldhead. Julie repeatedly told me that too.

          i started 6 mg of Stelazine in spring 1992. My life didn’t fall apart till fall of 1993 when they labeled me “Schizoaffective” which my dorm mom kicked me out over. Said I was dangerous and frightened the other girls.

          I’m not a murderer and it’s wrong for psychiatry to treat me as a violent criminal. They are punitive, not restorative in nature.

          In claiming to be merciful rather than just to violent criminals–as an excuse to treat the law abiding like dangerous criminals–the mental illness system acts in ways contrary to both. Psychiatry is neither justice nor mercy.

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    • All of mine were voluntary. The drugs kept me from thinking straight but they told me I needed them and my loopiness was all my (illness’s) fault. I kept wanting to kill myself because I believed I was an evil monster and dangerous to others so suicide was the ultimate act of self sacrifice and love. The only noble thing a monster like me could do.

      Now that I decided shrinks are full of it I’m no longer suicidal. Just angry.

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  10. Sera, thanks for another great blog!

    I was not familiar with DJ Jaffe but just watched a bit of a Ted Talk video of him. If he has a brother labelled with SMI I wonder if he had his brother forcibly treated, and if so, how his brother felt about it. Too bad he doesn’t put his energy into researching and speaking out against the harm and adverse reactions that toxic psych drugs bring about.

    To anyone who says the lock down makes them feel oppressed, isolated and fearful, well those who have been subjected to the oppression and coercion of psychiatry certainly can say ‘Welcome to my world” as what goes on in psychiatry is the ultimate lock down.

    This is a petition regarding future medical care for those in the US who may be interested:
    https://oneclickpolitics.global.ssl.fastly.net/messages/edit?promo_id=8778

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    • Hi Rosalee,

      Sorry, I missed your comment earlier! Yes, I do so wish more people who have his time and reach would invest their energies as you suggest… But alas, he seems much more invested in misunderstanding and misrepresenting… Sometimes intentionally it appears to me… Thanks for sharing the petition!

      -Sera

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  11. Sera, I’m just very glad that you are here. That you come on to post blogs. You are always so kind and considerate to respond and interact.
    Anyway, wanted to say thanks for being you, and for the interest you have in making this world a better place for people.
    I find it such a privilege, instead of hearing and reading the continuing cult of psychiatry advertising itself.
    Wish someone, could get the rights to advertise an opposing narrative, on the grounds that if opposing narratives are not allowed on TV, then we are NOT living in a country with free speech. So America cannot point to other countries in that respect.

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        • Are you asking me that, oldhead? I mean, I’m typically not a big fan of so many labels or anti’s including ‘anti-psychiatry’ as I think you know… So, I don’t know if I’d be inclined to start labeling myself ‘anti-capitalist,’ but sure, yes, capitalism is a hugely problematic driver of what is destroying the lives of so many people, and the people who deny that are typically those who are most benefiting it *or* those who’ve gotten tangled up in fantasies that somehow, some day, they’ll be able to “show everyone” by becoming one of those ones, too..

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          • You raised the issue of “capitalism.” You can’t be “a little bit” capitalist, it’s an either/or. My point is that if one is anti-capitalist it means they are essentially calling for revolution.

            Neither “anti-capitalist” NOR “anti-psychiatry” are “labels.” They describe specific ideologies.

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          • Eh, neither term is how I would choose to identify myself, oldhead. Sorry. Given that they are used to describe people, they are still labels even if labels representative of ideologies. Particularly the anti-psychiatry one doesn’t even do a good job of describing exactly what i think it truly means, and is too easily misunderstood or used as a label by which to dismiss someone. The anti-capitalist one is much clearer, but still I’m not going to slap it on my forehead. I said already what I mean… The capitalist nature of our system kills people, and necessitates the maintenance of groups that are at the bottom in order to keep others at the top, and so on and so forth. I can’t support such a mess, and I can’t really see a way for it to be different while still maintaining its central elements… So, call that what you will. 🙂

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          • Particularly the anti-psychiatry one doesn’t even do a good job of describing exactly what i think it truly means, and is too easily misunderstood or used as a label by which to dismiss someone.

            What anti-psychiatry “truly means” will be collectively clarified in the near future. However I should point out that only someone with no credibility would consider being “anti-psychiatry” a reason to “dismiss” anyone, so why should it matter? We want to appeal to intelligent people.

            The capitalist nature of our system kills people, and necessitates the maintenance of groups that are at the bottom in order to keep others at the top, and so on and so forth. I can’t support such a mess, and I can’t really see a way for it to be different while still maintaining its central elements… So, call that what you will.

            I call it you being unclear. If capitalism is deadly it needs to go, what is ambiguous there? You used the term “capitalism.” To the degree that we don’t fight it we support it, so it’s important to be clear what we mean. What are these “central elements,” and why should they be maintained if the system is a “mess”?

            P.S. Very sorry to hear you say that after all you’ve been through you don’t consider yourself anti-psychiatry. Hopefully that will change.

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  12. I suspect our Corona woes will shape up to be a boon to Mad Americans in the 2020’s, just like Rep. Tim Murphy’s disasters (legislative, political, and personal) of the 2010’s. Both the virus and its mismanagement are primed to boost public support for Mad-friendly laws and policies. Perhaps it’s callous to say, but I urge us not to let this crisis go to waste.

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  13. I’m not great at translating my thoughts into words but I’m going to try my best because this article really spoke to me. For the past couple months I couldn’t help but think about how quarantine has been a bit similar to my own (involuntary) psychiatric stay, with differences of course, and have also been annoyed with the amount of people claiming they now know what it’s like to be forcibly held against their will somewhere (usually in reference to incarceration) when like you mentioned, you have far more access to a variety of comforts and things that are not found in a true confined environment, like a psychiatric hospital, and not to mention it’s not even true confinement since people really can just leave whenever they wish (especially with restrictions being lifted in many different places). It’s incredibly frustrating as someone who is triggered by the situation at times to see people saying how bad confinement is when they don’t know what that truly means.

    Backtracking to this bit : “I am trying to track down the study that allegedly shows people avoid care for fear of involuntary commitment. I think it is one of those mental health propagated myths that has no basis in fact” Oh do I have a few colorful words in mind for this fellow but I’ll keep it clean. I was one of these people and still am. When I was 16 I was terrified to see a therapist for the first time since I was actively harming myself at the time and knew that could possibly get me put into a hospital. Fast forward two years later when I’m 18 the very thing I feared for years happened: I was involuntarily admitted to a psychiatric hospital due to suicidal thoughts (I was not planning to attempt, it was just a particularly rough mental health week). I won’t go in depth because it’s a lot and rather triggering but the stay left me with trauma that I’m still dealing with nearly three years later. And once again that left me with a fear of seeking treatment in fear that would happen again (and left me with a variety of other fears as well). I don’t feel you need a study to tell you that this is a very REAL fear people have, and that if people have this fear it should tell you something is very wrong with mental health care when sometimes people (like me) would rather try and go through it alone than try to find help for fear they would just be wounded even more.

    I could go on about other great points made in this (such as the whole section on Social Capital) but I’ll stop since I worry I have blathered on too much. Thank you for writing this, I actually cried reading this since I felt such relief knowing someone else thought the same things as me, and I hope I made some sort of sense.

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    • Itsrey,

      Thanks so much for reading and sharing. I really appreciated it, and you totally made sense. 🙂 I absolutely agree with you … this idea that we need research to demonstrate what is so obviously true is absurd… And that – in the absence of research – some are powerful and/or privileged enough to simply deny its reality is completely infuriating. I’m sorry you’ve been harmed in the ways you have, and I wish that aspect of your story wasn’t so common. Thanks again. 🙂

      -Sera

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      • Consider the difference between torture and kidnapping which are crimes against an individual, and then treatment and referral which are considered necessary to get the help a “patient” needs. The ONLY difference is one of status. One is done to a citizen and comes under the Crminal Code, the other done to a patient and comes under the Mental Health Act.

        So in my situation I was subjected to a conspiracy to stupefy and commit an indictable offence namely kidnapping, and that was concealed by planting items on me for police to find and then have them hand me over to a mental health worker (Community Nurse) who then made me into a patient because he wished to torture and kidnap me.

        And getting the documented proof of that means …… they get them back and kill you in an Emergency Dept with a ‘hot shot’ while you people sit and call me insane for complaining about the nice Community Nurse who is helping all those poor mentally ill patients.

        Don’t misunderstand me, I’m good with the State torturing and kidnapping. Theres a few police and public officials who I think we should have another word to now I know how to do this. Seriously though, it seems they are exempt from arbitrary detentions and the use of known torture methods disguised as medicine.

        It’s simply a legal loophole and it’s no wonder we hear of “patients” complaining about being tortured and kidnapped when the only difference is that the person doing the kidnapping knows they have that loophole of the law to slip through. The thingss you can do to a person if you call it medicine. As the amatuer gynocologist operating in our nite clubs who according to our police is free to spike their victims (I mean patients) with benzos because they can’t find their copy of the Criminal Code, and therefore criminals stupefying with intent to sexually assault are free to do as they wish. Anyone attending a police station to make a complaint regarding that could be arrested if they got a toxicology report to provide the proof to police. Of course this is nonsense and only being done to ensure their torturing and kidnapping of me is not acted upon. What happens whne the State IS the criminals?

        It’s very clever, any inconvenient truths or corruption by State actors being exposed gets referred to mental health and the whole community knows to keep their mouth shut. “I see they took away the Cohens today Dear, it’ll probably be the last we see of them. Nice people, oh we’ll, how was your day?”

        What has fascinated me is how they know to avoid looking at any documentation from the likes of our Chief Psychiatrist etc knowing that if they did they would then be aware of the crimes being committed. Police not even prepared to put their hands on them to ensure their fingerprints are not on them. Lest they be held to account for their dereliction of duty. I guess they become experts in tampering with evidence in the job. And of course knowing that the false narrative is the preferred narrative, looking at the truth may cause problems. So I understand why they become actively involved in the gaslighting, and well, in most cases that is effective. Unless of course the public officer is being tested, and then it’s a known offence to fail to perform your duty. Happy retirement Sgt. You were tested and failed along with others who shall remain nameless for now. Though they have been listed and He is working his way through that list. Your assitance is much appreciated Superintendent. Who better to test them than someone they think can be crushed like a gnat? Their mouths say one thing, but what is in their hearts is demonstrated when they think no one is looking.

        But oh it’s hard work throwing them into the fire. They put up so much resistance, lying, begging for mercy, just one more chance ….. honestly I’ll behave myself now. Heard it all before. Anybody got a match? If you could see their faces when they are thrown into the fire, but your protected from that horror, lest you start to enjoy seeing it. Best to not look into their eyes.

        “The horror, the horror”

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  14. Sera–

    Your article was quite insightful, but left out some important components, in my opinion.

    You said: “I’ve never been much of a fan of comparing the usual challenges of life in a capitalist nation as lived by often quite privileged people to the experiences of those who have been marginalized and contained against their will.” Why have you not done this comparison? From where I sit, capitalism is the number one cause of “mental illness.”

    The different publications over the past ten years relative to the establishment of preparations for this pandemic provide evidence of the Pharma State’s willingness to use this time to engineer its tip-toe fascism–just starting.

    It’s hard for me to see why few recognize this or the extensions from psychiatric oppression to the whole of society during this lockdown by the Pharma State.

    Eric Snowden said that when a government usurps freedoms in the name of security during a crisis, it does not relinquish these controls when the crisis ends. 911 and Homeland Security is one example.

    If people do not wake up form their illusions of protection by Big Brother, then they will suffer the consequences. I feel the time is overdue for those of privilege to self-examine and see what this means for them and the rest of us.

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    • Don,

      It feels like you’re taking what I said a bit out of context and its actual meaning. I think it’s pretty clear that what I’m saying in that excerpt you’ve pulled out is that I do not think it’s okay to act as if what are often moreso inconveniences experienced by those who hold a significant amount of privilege to the deep and systemic losses of those who do not. But also, where you appear to be going with the rest of your comment isn’t a place I’m at all willing to go in this comments section. Perhaps others will be more available to that conversation, though!

      Thanks,

      Sera

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  15. @Sera Davidow,

    It seems like most of global society (at least what they show of themselves online), and this includes even patients and the caretakers of those patients, is on the side of psychiatry. People here are dismissed or mocked as being Scientologists or anti-vaccine denialists and individual experiences (which are brutally real for the individuals experiencing them) are brushed off under the rug of “anecdotal evidence”.

    Most people use and stand-by the use of the psychiatric language of behavioural labeling, neurocrap and psychiatrists hold a massive amount of authority.

    People ask, “so you antipsychiatry guys don’t believe mental illness exists”, “what do you call it when a woman drowns her baby?”

    There are forums out there where people are required to write the list of all their “diagnoses” and all the drugs they’re on in their signatures, so that they get “support” from other members. These forums have very large populations. There are mental health chatrooms filled with patients completely reliant on mental health workers (and MH verbiage) who have a quasi-god like status in their minds. They find solutions to their problems and their problems with people around them through these quasi-gods and their language. They are akin to Kapos. It’s very pathetic to see, but also more problematic to protect yourself against.

    How do you deal with these with individuals (and they’re a majority) in real life? How should one protect oneself from such people? Is the best form of interaction to have with them, no interaction? This results in a lot of isolation and constantly living in fear (for good reason) because once you’re into psychiatry, it’s very hard to get out of it for many reasons.

    MadInAmerica is a minority place. It’s a safe space for people who want to get OUT of everything to do with psychiatry including its “doctors” and even patients/caretakers. I’m not sure anything like it even exists anywhere else.

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    • What do you call it when a woman drowns her baby?

      One calls it whatever one likes, but it is not something called “mental illness”, because then we have to call the guy something that puts electrodes on a teenagers brain and shocks it, plus gives them random chemicals, which he knows cause harm.

      So what do we call it when psychiatry kills and harms people and robs them of any semblance of life? Or when cops kill or beat someone just because they can?

      When a judge takes away a mother’s children because a shrink sided with her spouse?

      Psychiatry will NEVER EVER prevent tragedy. They create it.

      In fact it is Psychiatry and not the general public that knows that the fraud it practices. Psychiatry is educated enough to completely understand it’s pretense.

      And it is exactly lack of insight they rely on, to keep their sham going.

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    • A woman who drowns her baby used to be called a murderer. Novelists write novels. Painters paint pictures. Murderers commit murders. But people like a neat explanation to make themselves feel secure and build their egos for being “normal.”

      Saying, “A woman only drowns her baby because she is ‘bipolar,'” is a way of imposing guilt by association on a lot of law abiding citizens. This made me suicidal after my “diagnosis” since I believed my shrink that I was a monster. 🙁

      A bunch of women at church took up a petition to stop me from teaching Sunday school once they found out about my label. I obeyed my stupid shrink and got treated like a pariah.

      Relocated where no one knows my dirty secret. I’m physically damaged, so i tell people that’s my disability and why I can’t work and never had a family. Amazing how nice they are to me.

      Tapering off the drugs helped me pick up on social cues and nuances. This Covid 19 scare is making “normal” people act nutty and ruining everyone’s social skills. The great equalizer.

      I obey the law. But Covid 19 doesn’t scare me the way it does so many. I faced the idea that I was hopelessly insane from a genetic brain defect at twenty and proved the experts wrong.

      This illness doesn’t scare me as much as the threat of hopeless insanity shrinks held over my head to keep me in line. Even dying from it scares me less. At 60% infection rates and maybe 5% mortality with my autoimmune issues, I’m more apt to catch it than die from it.
      It is what it is. 🙂

      All those “normals” sure are acting “crazy and paranoid.” Violent too. Proof that sanity is all relative and no one is immune to craziness.

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    • Hi registered,

      I’m not sure how to answer your question, primarily because I don’t know quite what the answer is. You’re right. This space is still very much in the minority, and its audience is limited. The accusations, insults, and attempts to discredit are common and it doesn’t matter that they’re baseless because the people who hurl them are backed by the majority. It can be extremely frustrating.

      What I can say is that I haven’t found it helpful to try and force people out of that other paradigm… Because force is force and so much of what drives so many of us in our distress is loss of power. However, if you have the energy for it, exposure to other materials and ideas and perspectives will eventually move some folks… Almost every person I know who is here having these conversations now was once in a very different place where they too would not have balked at a diagnostic and psych drug listing in their signatures… Some of them would even have argued vehemently that it was absolutely needed… Short of blowing up what is so as to force the system’s hand (as opposed to individuals) re: change, I think that’s about all we’ve got. But it can be a very lonely spot indeed. I’m sorry I don’t have a better answer, but for what it’s worth, I have seen many people move in that way over the years.

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        • @registerdforthissite

          Also sometimes just planting a seed can be helpful. One-on-one. For instance, I talk about how much complementary medicine has changed my life, & then, just let it drop.

          At first impulse, it’s the human natural for the other person to disagree, especially if it contradicts a cherished belief. I feel that urge in myself sometimes, but I am getting better at suggesting an alternative and preventing myself from getting drawn into a prolonged debate. I hate polemics.

          It’s harder with this topic since so much is at stake. But, who knows? Maybe the person will remember what was said at a later time. Just because you won’t be there to see it, doesn’t mean there won’t be a transformation at a later time. “Kapos.” Intriguing. Never thought of it that way.

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      • I would add that asking people questions, per the Socratic method or something like it, is a better way to lead people into making observations that conflict with their own assumptions than telling them they are wrong. Most people hate being wrong. As Albus Dumbledore wisely stated, “Most people find it much easier to forgive you for being wrong than they do for being right.” Or something like that.

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        • Ah! A Harry Potter fan. I can’t tell you how much those books mean to me. Childish, I know. But some of the happiest memories of my life are associated with Harry Potter. I have read, re-read and then re-read all the books many times over. I’m almost thrice as old as I was when I read the first book. Even John Williams’ soundtrack, particularly “Leaving Hogwarts”, when I listen to it, feels like a huge balloon of happiness and comfort swelling inside.

          Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!

          Sorry, wrong forum to have a casual chat on a serious discussion. Mods, if you want to remove this comment, you can.

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    • “They are akin to Kapos.”

      https://www.madinamerica.com/2019/10/peer-specialists-mental-health-workforce/

      Interesting though brief discussion regarding this analogy in the first comment.

      I know you were asking Sera her opinion but I do think theres a lot to be said for avoiding these people, though of course should they chose to attack you, then the rules of engagment change. I think reading through your comment it would be easy to see the similarity to witch hunts. So you don’t believe in witches? What made the woman drown her baby then? And how could the witch drown the baby when it’s made from wood? lol The world seems to be regressing into a collective form of insanity, taken there by people who are benefiting from that insanity.

      And I don’t know that MiA is the escape you suggest. It is most certainly a place to obtain an education and learn methods of defending yourself from these vicious human rights abusers (one among many functions the site serves). Though it is sometimes easy to fall into the trap of believing that this ‘system’ simply needs ‘tweaking’ and that the guards shoving people into the showers at the point of a bayonette are really good people at heart and are just doing their jobs. They would sell you out in a minute, of this I have no doubt. Details available on request.

      As someone who has been subjected to known torture methods I find it easy to understand why so many ‘advocates’ fold once the mere mention of ‘coercive methods’ is mentioned. Thanks Dr Pavlov. The words of a psychologist who knew what I was saying was the truth, but was threatened by the police into silence regarding his examination of the documents I have. “I’m afraid for my family”. And that’s his justification for using ‘therapy’ for obtaining information for police regarding “who else has the documents”. He should be delisted, unlicenced, struck off, though I dare say he really wasn’t aware that people were being tortured in the locked wards, and assumed that good people would step up. he knows different now lol. Oh, and threatening his family is only considered ‘coercive’ so they didn’t even need to torture him. Handy little resource when police have someone who won’t talk willingly, exploit their trust in a therapy session. Is that ethical?

      It certainly works with defence lawyers who are acting as police informers. All perfectly legal in Australia. See HCA decision 47 of 2010 ACC v Stoddart. No spousal privilege in common law in Australia. The dominoes fall and there are no privileged communications AT ALL where coercion can not be used against the person receiving the information eg priest, doctor lawyer etc. This is why our police can say Gobbo can not happen again with certainty, they have made that conduct legal. Your right to silence may be maintained (though difficult because they are using known torture methods), but they can threaten your lawyer, doctor, priest or family member (ie use coercive methods) to obtain information. Good thing bad thing? Who knows. My belief it will destroy any and all trust we share in our community. This place leaves Ceausescu Romania looking like a holiday resort. Just don’t scratch too hard and you won’t see it.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicola_Gobbo

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  16. “I am trying to track down the study that allegedly shows people avoid care for fear of involuntary commitment. I think it is one of those mental health propagated myths that has no basis in fact,”

    What a load. That guy doesn’t need a “study” – just ask patients anonymously.
    If not avoiding therapy, we’re certainly afraid to express our feelings to anyone. I remember coming out of the hospital and thinking “Never again.” Never again will I go to someone for help. They lie. “Just check in for the night; you can leave in the morning.” Never again will I confide in family members. Never again will I tell my counselor what I’m thinking. Then when you get out of the hospital, whether voluntary or committed, there is so much catching up to do. Mail, bills, life. Everything that went to hell (sorry) while you were being held – because you are a prisoner when you check in voluntarily, too. Where (and when) I was at, they kept all patients a minimum of two weeks. No one to help when you get out.

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    • NotCrazyAfterAllTheseYears,

      I totally agree. Jaffe is basically – in my experience – someone who discredits anything and everything that hasn’t been studied. Worse, he is someone who tends to discredit anything that hasn’t been studied in the ‘double blind’ blah blah blah supposed “gold standard” of research. The problems with that are many, including that even the supposedly ‘double blind’ research gets manipulated and misrepresented with frequency, and of course… some of those types of research are inaccessible to implement (way too much money, etc.) and simply not a match for treating everyone like actual human beings. It’s super frustrating in many regards, when the answer to his question would be answered pretty unequivocally by – as you suggest – simply asking people. But then, that would not fit his agenda either. :p

      -Sera

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  17. Hello friend’s I am currently in need of assistance and suspect a psychiatric facility of abusing human rights. I have a friend on the inside. The ward has no geographical info on google maps. No call number for facilities or patients. Aventura Harbour apartments directs me to corporate or email and averts all my questions and inquiries. I can tell they are hiding something. I started a police investigation and have been told to contact the city, etc. I was wondering if someone with more expertise could help save my friend from being drugged until they aren’t who they used to be.

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    • You would have a fair idea of what is going on around here madmother13. The way our police are planting evidence on a massive scale to corrupt our court system. Scott Austic the latest in a line of people wrongly convicted.

      I was going through my documents again ready for a meeting and noticed the way the Community Nurse presented me as wishing to speak to police. He was obviously pre pairing a defence for their impending use of a known torture method. Shows his intent I believe, not that anyone will look at inconvenient truths.

      People wonder how I know these people tried to unintentionally negatively outcome me in the ED. You would have to have seen how desperate they were to have me made into a “patient” after the fact. And the Operations Manager threateneing to fuking destroy me after her ‘formal investigation’ and me explaining to her that if she did not report the matters to the CCC she was committing an offence. So they get police to assist in retrieving documents (so that the fraudulent ones making me into a “patient” could be distributed) and attempt to kill me, unfortunate for them my wifes doctor friend noticed and was waiting.

      You would think police would pick the matter up and follow through given the serious nature of the matters. Nope, double down because were so busy trying to conceal their use of torture and kidnapping that they will work with organised criminals to conceal it. Probably the reason they need to plant evidence in so many cases, because they simply don’t have time as a result of needing to conceal their own nastiness. It’s been a lot of work for them trying to find ways to arrest the victim of kidnapping and torture for having the documented proof. The amount of people who have had to be threatened quite large now as a result of them having two years to go their own ways and then not trusting each other when the matter was once again exposed. They weren’t sure who might have ‘turned’ not realising police were still working on obstructing and perverting justice. Paranoids lol

      Still, what I have noticed is the amount of people who will bow down to any god that they stand before. Police put a gun to their heads and they comply fairly easily. Everybody wants to go to heaven, but none of them wants to die lol. I’m a bit more like the Joker, a dog chasing cars who wouldn’t know what to do if he caught one.

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