Wednesday, July 15, 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).

Thinking Holistically – attempting to change the Status Quo

In our experience, using anger or name-calling isn’t usually very effective when trying to fight the “establishment” or status quo. Something we teach all...

How can parents help kids who don’t want help?

Let's not keep missing the main point of the SAMHSA stakeholder discussion We have to LISTEN to people that have opposite points of view...

The George Costanza Excuse for Medical Ghostwriting

Several months ago, two professors at the University of Pennsylvania were accused of ghostwriting. The university has now announced the results of their investigation, which is partially based on work by the great moral philosopher, George Constanza...

Autistic Acceptance and Understanding: Forging Emotional Connections

I met with a 5 year old autistic boy who was non-verbal. He came into the office and began banging his hands on the...

We are for truly informed choice; not anti-medications

I have had quite a few discussions with people who have not heard of the research on this site. Very often as soon as...

A Pharmaceutical Company That Agrees With Irving Kirsch? Wellbutrin Advertised as 10% More Effective...

Irving Kirsch (the psychologist who has argued that antidepressants offer a marginal advantage over placebos) has agreement from an unlikely source- advertisements from a pharmaceutical company, which agree completely...

Better Broadband

So many treatment colleagues have shared that prior to finding an approach that really works to turn a child’s intensity to greatness, they felt no recourse other that to look for ways to moderate the accelerating poor choices that children they worked with were making. Most relevant here is, that in retrospect, they felt that it boiled down to simply being faithful to their training, which it turns out so often is a set up to fail with difficult children.

Thinking Holistically

I am a board certified psychiatrist and a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. I mention these things only to indicate that I...

Vote NOW for solutions to emotional distress!

If you want solutions for emotional distress, vote NOW! Vote for the distress model and vote for Aunt Bertha. 1) Vote now for the distress...

The Shame Game of “Patient Responsibility”

On one hand the use of prescription drugs in mental health treatment has been compared to insulin for the diabetic. You never hear about...

Why Anti-Authoritarians are Diagnosed as Mentally Ill

(Note: Read Bruce Levine's latest post: Anti-Authoritarians and Schizophrenia: Do Rebels Who Defy Treatment Do Better? In my career as a psychologist, I have talked with...

The Emperor’s Antipsychotic Drugs

I avoid drug reps but I can not stop them from finding me through the mail. Over the past few months, I have received reprints of an article from The American Journal of Psychiatry (1), reporting on a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of lurasidone from the company that makes this drug. Since I had it in my hands, I read it. What I found was surprising. Rather than leaving me impressed by lurasidone, it left me wondering what happened with olanzapine (Zyprexa).

Chapter Twenty-Four: Off the Meds and Out of My Mind

During my first few days on the locked psychiatric unit of the hospital on the hill in early December 2008, I counted the passing...

So This Is Texas 2

Allow me to introduce myself to you... I'm a California transplant and now live and work in the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex where I...

The American Psychiatric Association’s Response to 60 Minutes: Where is the Science?

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has posted a response to the 60 minutes segment on Irving Kirsch and the placebo effect in antidepressant research. But is their response based on scientific data?

Interpreting Harrow’s 20-Year Results: Are the Drugs to Blame?

Martin Harrow has just published his 20-year outcomes data for schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders. Those who took antipsychotics regularly experienced more psychosis, more anxiety, cognitive impairment, and markedly fewer periods of "sustained recovery." Harrow asks: "Is very long-term treatment with antipsychotic medications undesirable?"

The Cause and Solution for Emotional Distress

Hi, I'm Corinna West, a psychiatric survivor.  I was very ill one time and now I'm not. That's the short story. The slightly longer...

Set Up for the Con

If biological psychiatrists have lied to us, we need to ask why, as a culture, we have been so willing to embrace those lies. Generally, we’re most apt to be conned when the con men appeal to our hopes and fears. We don’t like to admit that many people rightly fear the influence of therapy. If we want to defeat biological psychiatry, we can’t just show its lack of integrity. We have to offer alternatives that deserve trust.

Response to 60 Minutes

On February 19, 2012, Lesley Stahl’s “Treating depression: is there a placebo effect?” aired on CBS 60 Minutes. Stahl is to be commended for...

Letters from the Front Lines

Bob-- An encounter from this week: I saw a 24 year-old theater actress who was started on Lexapro nine months ago for a one-time "panic attack"...

Personal Steps toward a Revolution in Mental Health Care

My friend David Oaks, director of MindFreedom , likes to say that what is currently needed is a non-violent revolution in mental health care.  Mental...

A Road Map to Hope

In my last blog, invited readers to consider sharing their families’ recovery stories and to open to the possibility of the healing that is available when we connect with each other through this sharing. I would like to share one of these stories with all of you.

The Real Suicide Data from the TADS Study Comes to Light

Last week, Robert Gibbons reported in the Archives of General Psychiatry that fluoxetine was not found to increase the suicide risk in children compared to placebo. But if we closely examine the suicide data from the TADS trial, which at first glance seems to support Gibbons' conclusion, we find a trail of hidden data and scientific scandal.

60 Minutes, The SSRIs, and The Dirty Little Secret

Last night, 60 Minutes presented the work of Irving Kirsch, who has been researching the placebo effect in antidepressants for many years. We discuss.

Turning a Child’s Intensity to Greatness

My passion in the medication debate stems from my clinical work with families with challenging and intense children. I got to see that with 2-3 weeks - at most within 2-3 months for the most difficult children - that the very same intensity that had gone awry became the very fuel for that child's greatness.

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