Friday, August 14, 2020

The Effects of Practicing Psychotherapy on Therapists’ Personal Lives

A new study, published in Psychotherapy Research, explores how having a career in psychotherapy affects therapists’ personal lives.

New Book Deconstructs Ideology of Cognitive Therapy

CBT forwards a hyper-rational perspective of human suffering that complements a managerialist culture of efficiency and institutionalization in the Western world.

Victim Blaming: Childhood Trauma, Mental Illness & Diagnostic Distractions?

Why, despite the fact that the vast majority of people diagnosed with a mental illness have suffered from some form of childhood trauma, is it still so difficult to talk about? Why, despite the enormous amount of research about the impact of trauma on the brain and subsequent effect on behaviour, does there seem to be such an extraordinary refusal for the implication of this research to change attitudes towards those who are mentally ill? Why, when our program and others like it have shown people can heal from the effects of trauma, are so many people left with the self-blame and the feeling they will never get better that my colleague writes about below?

United Nations Report Calls for Revolution in Mental Health Care

In a new report, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Dr. Dainius Pūras, calls for a move away from the biomedical model and “excessive use of psychotropic medicines.”
suicide silhouette

Deadly Serious: Talking Openly About Suicide

The suicide crisis is real. The pain is real. The deaths are real. None of us can afford to stick our heads in the sand and pretend that this isn't happening. But the helplessness and confusion about what to do about it are also real. And that's why peer relationships and peer-developed modalities can be so helpful. Many of us have been there and are still alive to talk about it. We know what ways of relating gave us hope and helped us to continue on.

Study Finds Improved Functioning for ‘Schizophrenia’ Without Antipsychotics

Long-term treatment with antipsychotic drugs is currently considered the standard treatment for patients diagnosed with ‘schizophrenia.’ A new study challenges this practice, however. The...

What Does Social Justice Really Mean for Psychologists?

Without clarity and consensus around what social justice means, psychologists risk perpetuating injustices that undermine their stated mission.

Psychology Needs New Concepts and Healing Models for Racial Trauma

Contemporary empirical research explores new ways to conceptualize and heal racial trauma through anticolonial and sociohistorical lenses.

Psychologist Debunks Common Misconceptions of Maslow’s Hierarchy

Utilizing Maslow’s published books and essays, psychologist William Compton delineates common myths and attempts to respond to them.

Climate Change, Mental Health and Collective Action: An Interview with Jennifer Freeman

In an interview with MIA's Akansha Vaswani, narrative therapist Jennifer Freeman calls for a shift away from individualistic approaches to 'eco-anxiety' and toward responses that connect us all to a counter-tsunami of action for the planet.

Does Psychotherapy Reproduce or Disrupt Neoliberal Capitalism?

Researchers explore neoliberal influences on interactions in psychotherapy and question whether the radical potential of psychotherapy can counter prevailing social systems.

The ACE Survey is Unusable Data

Do the effects of trauma matter more, or a person's ACE score? I think this is unusable data that harms people when you gather it. Here's why.

Danish Study Finds Better 10-year Outcomes in Patients Off Antipsychotics

Study finds that 74% of patients with a psychotic disorder off antipsychotics at end of 10 years are in remission.

Researchers Test Harms and Benefits of Long Term Antipsychotic Use

Researchers from the City College of New York and Columbia University published a study this month testing the hypothesis that people diagnosed with schizophrenia treated long-term with antipsychotic drugs have worse outcomes than patients with no exposure to these drugs. They concluded that there is not a sufficient evidence base for the standard practice of long-term use of antipsychotic medications.

The Paradox of White Americans’ Mental Health

Are White Americans’ poor mental health outcomes caused by Whiteness?

Hearing Voices Network Launches Family & Friends Support Group

One of the HVN's fundamental principles is that "the person having these experiences is in the best position to decide or discover what they mean" and thus each person must "not try to speak for" another. The challenge for a family group will likely be for members to move past speaking about our loved ones to find or imagine the space where we ourselves are liberated.
love

Are Emotional Disorders Really Disorders of Love?

Could the whole array of psychiatric diagnostic categories, to the extent that they have any validity at all, be expressions of the failure to love and to accept love? Do successful psychotherapies really work by means of the therapist’s ability to encourage people to experience love through how positively he or she relates to them?

Study Finds Heavy Metal Music Beneficial to Mental Health

A new study highlights the role heavy metal music plays in the mental health of adolescents facing adversity.

Traditional Healing and Psychosis vs. the Promises of Modern Science

As noted in Anatomy of an Epidemic, the prognosis for someone experiencing psychosis is far better in developing countries than in industrialized countries. Robert Whitaker and others posit that this is due to the treatment models used in the developing world, as well as to debility and chronicity caused by psychiatric drugs themselves. I think it's also important to explore traditional tribal and village based models of helping people experiencing psychosis and examine why they may be effective. Do these traditional societies know something we don't?

Opening Doors in the Borderlands: An Interview with Liberation Psychologist Mary Watkins

MIA’s Micah Ingle interviews Mary Watkins about reorienting psychology toward liberation and social justice.

The History and Effectiveness of Peer Support from 18th-Century France to Today

Yale's Program for Recovery and Community Health will publish in World Psychiatry's June issue a review the history of peer support, from its roots...

From Self Care to Collective Caring

As a trauma survivor growing up in various adolescent mental health systems, I never learned any useful self-care tools or practices. I was taught that my current coping skills (self-injury, suicidal behavior, illicit drug use) were unacceptable, but not given any ideas as to what to replace them with. No one seemed to want to know much about the early childhood traumas that were driving these behaviors. Instead, I collected an assortment of diagnoses. I was told that I would be forever dependent on mediated relationships with professionals, and an ever-changing combination of pills. The message was that my troubles were chemical in nature and largely beyond my control.

An Alternative Perspective on Psychotherapy: It is Not a ‘Cure’

Kev Harding argues against conceptualizations of therapy as a ‘cure’ to an ‘illness’ and instead offers alternative approaches.

Recovery: Compromise or Liberation?

The 90s were labeled - rather optimistically - as the ‘decade of recovery.’ More recently, recovery has been placed slap bang central in mental health policy. Is supporting recovery pretty much good common sense? Or is the term being misused to pressure those suffering to behave in certain ways?

Responding to Madness With Loving Receptivity: a Practical Guide

In my last three blogs I posed the question- "If madness isn't what psychiatry says it is, then what is it?" Now I'm asking-...

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