Monday, February 17, 2020


Essays by a diverse group of writers, in the United States and abroad, engaged in rethinking psychiatry. (The directory of personal stories can be found here, and initiatives here).

The Power of Storytelling

Over the years, I have heard many powerful recovery stories. I’ve also had many opportunities to share our family’s struggle with mental health challenges and our recovery journey.

Thinking about Care with Care

Weak science and exaggerated reports of discovery aren’t the special province of biological psychiatrists. We don’t really understand much about the suffering that brings people into care. We need to study the beliefs that we like as critically we study the ones we don’t.

Should Jilted Lovers Be Treated with Antidepressants?

It is refreshing that The New York Times in the space of four days has published two articles which take a critical view of...

Revising the History of the Serotonin Theory of Depression?

Did scientists recently discover that the Serotonin Theory of Depression is false? Or has this been known for decades? We investigate.

Chapter Twenty-Three: On the Locked Unit, Locked in Myself

As we made our way out of Boston and to the psychiatric hospital on the hill, I watched the ‘normal’ world— the world beyond the Plexiglas rear window of the ambulance I was strapped into— drift past me into the distance.

Bipolar Everywhere

A recent dramatic rise in diagnoses of Bipolar has been documented (Moreno, Laje et al., 2007). Bipolar used to be a relatively rare event. When working at the state hospital during the 1970s, over a 7 year period, I recall only 4 or 5 patients with a bipolar diagnosis.

More on Recovery & Liberation: Oppression & Resilience

Just a few days ago, the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, perhaps the foremost legal advocacy organization for persons with disabilities in the country, issued its “vision of community integration” for the disabled, listing the “key principles” that should be utilized to achieve that aim.

Is It All in Your Head?

In a recent NPR story, there was a discussion of the serotonin theory of depression. It was acknowledged by the scientists who were interviewed that there is no evidence of a serotonin deficiency in the brains of people who are depressed.

The Taint of Eugenics In NIMH-Funded Research Today

Recently, Thomas Insel, director of the National Institute of Mental Health, identified the “NIMH’s Top 10 Research Advances of 2011.” He wrote: “This has been a year of exciting discoveries and scientific progress . . . Here are 10 breakthroughs and events of 2011 that are changing the landscape of mental health research.”

Tsunami of Frozen Grief Found in the Clinical Work

One of the primary clinical teachings found in the pursuit of prescription drug withdrawal: we need stepping stones and a great many of them to navigate the perilous terrain.

Excellent Article on Antipsychotic Drug Harm Reduction in Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health...

Matthew Aldridge, a psychiatric nurse at London's Lambeth Hospital, just published a new article in the 2011 Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, "Addressing Non-Adherence to Antipsychotic Medication: A Harm-Reduction Approach." This is an extraordinarily well researched clinical discussion of professional medication practice.

Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care Projects

One of the incredible things I get to do is talk to researchers, people with lived experience, family members, psychiatrists, psychologists, pediatricians, therapists, social...

Psychiatry’s Grand Confession

The psychiatric profession has finally come clean and confessed on a national media outlet that there is no evidence to support the Serotonin Theory...

The Cure for Mood Disorders Is Dementia?

Perhaps the most alarming current trend in psychiatry, documented by Domino and Schwartz (2008), is the rise in prescriptions for the class of drug...

Introducing Myself

I’m an Associate Professor at the Georgia State University in the School of Social Work. Early in my career in the late 1960s and...

Get Off Prescription Drugs: Arriving at the Work

I sat in my office in the middle of Provo, Utah (home of BYU) on a scorching hot Wasatch mountain day. I was taking a brief professional hiatus...

The Importance of Being Useful

All people need to feel useful in this life.  The sense of belonging with others and being important to them is the primary need...

Letters from the Front Lines

Dear Bob-- I met a new patient today, an African American gentleman in his late 40's, a successful entrepreneur and innovator (invented and marketed his...

Recovery and Liberation: One and the Same?

You can’t have one without the other. I’ll explain as we go along. As 2011 was winding down, SAMHSA issued what it termed its “…...

Pilgrim’s Progress: From Young Madman to Old Therapist

I'll begin this chapter of my personal odyssey through madness and the vocation it created of my life as a therapist specializing in madness, with...

On Creative Maladjustment and Rethinking Psychiatry

On this day January 16 2012, we commemorate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  and as such, many thoughts are...

Diagnosing Dangers

As I wrote in my first blog, A Three Pronged Approach to Mental Health System Change, after I read Mad in America in 2002,...

Chapter Twenty-Two: To the Hospital on the Hill

Bright, white light pours into my eyes, which have opened themselves slowly.  I clench them closed again, hoping to push the light out.  For...

A Visit into the Lithuanian Mental Health System

In November of 2011 I spent two weeks in Lithuania -- a fascinating time. Some colleagues in Scandinavia connected me with a progressive psychiatrist...

Rethinking Brain Research In Psychiatry

The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, CA is one of the premier centers for brain research in the country, and so when the...

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