I Am Not the Next Headline in Tragedy
I may be psychotic but I am not the next headline in the news. I am thoughtful and questioning. I am different and unique, but I am not violent and my life will never be anyone's tragedy. Would you like to stand with me?
Chasing that Elusive Insight
The psychiatric concept of insight rests on the assumption that the psychiatrist, designated sane, knows what’s best. But if we question that assumption and consider that the medical model of mental illness may be incorrect, then the question of which party actually possesses insight becomes less clear.
The Agonizing Nightmare of Drug-Induced Akathisia
Take every horrific feeling you’ve ever had in your life, all at once. Now, times them by 200, right in your gut. That is how akathisia pain feels. When I tell doctors I have drug-induced akathisia, and that it's incredibly painful, they do not believe me. They say my pain is a mental health issue, and they have all methodically undermined my credibility in my permanent record.
Seizures and Constant Headaches: My TMS Experience
I wanted to believe TMS could be the thing that helped my depression and changed my life. Instead, I wound up with a new diagnosis: Epilepsy.
Functional Medicine: My Path Out of Psychiatry
My blood work indicated a host of issues that had been lurking under the surface of my “psychiatric diagnoses” for years. I’d seen various mental health professionals and none had recommended these types of tests, or stopped to think about any underlying factors, aside from the well-known “serotonin myth.”
Surviving Schizophrenia: A Memoir
I was diagnosed with schizophrenia when I was just nineteen. I am forty-three now, and I have recovered – and I use the term...
Instrument of the Machine No More
Early in my social work career, I truly believed that medication and forced confinement helped heal “mental illness.” Then an abrupt awakening completely altered my worldview.
The Day I Became Schizophrenic
Schizophrenia, to me, is nothing more than a word. All it really means is that you experience psychosis on a regular enough basis that it’s a factor in your life. And that you actually do, as the word “schizophrenia” indicates, have a mind that you share with some sort of outside presence.
The Light in the Dark
Darkness began to consume my life, both literally and metaphorically. My surroundings and even my own thoughts would become distorted into something terrifying. As the nights droned on, shadows in my dorm room would contort themselves into threatening figures. The whispers continued to grow, overcoming the thoughts in my head.
I Want Change
Only two hours after we got home, Dan fearlessly told me of the suicide plan that he'd devised while in the hospital. He had all that time to think about it while nobody was listening. He'd lost his dignity, his identity and his place in society. He had lost the will to live.
Trauma Survivors Speak Out Against Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
Despite the majority of the individuals being sent to DBT having histories of severe childhood trauma, little about DBT treatment is “trauma-informed.”
What Happened When I Went Off Meds and Onto Nutrients
I remember clearly thinking, “I’m done. I’m not putting myself through this again.” I wasn’t going to settle for the side effects of a marginally better than placebo treatment again. Here is a brief look into my rollercoaster journey of recovery, returning to work, having my trauma re-triggered, finding a way through, and finally living well.
Us, Too: Sexual Violence Against People Labeled Mentally Ill
In light of the recent events and media discussions pertaining to the issue of sexual violence, we feel that it is of the utmost importance to speak out about this issue in the context of psychiatry and the treatment of those perceived as mentally ill.
Creatively Managing Voice-Hearing Through Spiritual Writing
I am a psychiatric survivor of over thirty-six years. Since my nervous breakdown in 1978, I have undergone multitudinous experiences ranging from the subtly humiliating to the horrifically debilitating at the hands of incompetent psychiatrists and psychopharmacologists who, in the name of medicine, did more harm than good.
My Story and My Fight Against Antidepressants
I’d like to share a bit about what happened to me after being placed on these medications, and how I successfully got off. Until recently, I was embarrassed to talk about my personal experiences publicly, as I’m a professional who specializes in anxiety and depression. Today, medication free, I feel better than ever before, and I am now on a mission to help my current clients get off medications, and to inform others through my writing about the dangers and pitfalls of starting antidepressants.
Involuntary Obedience: Rituals of Humiliation Disguised as ‘Care’
Like slavery took such a long time to be ‘officially’ forbidden, psychiatric hospitals will be with us for some time yet. Their masters, the doctors or administrators, no longer give beatings with their hands but with the far more treacherous chemicals that allow them to keep a good conscience and distribute what are beatings nevertheless.
Negatively Charged: ECT and the Truth I Could Never Forget
I live with the changes every day, even now, four years later. It often feels as though the shocks have rendered me one-handed, only ever capable of dealing with one thing at a time.
The Unveiling of the Truth: A Journey Into the Invisible World
It is through the experience of suffering that God educates us with the knowledge of the heart that He alone holds the key to.
Eventually I realized the drugs were safe and effective—for those prescribing them. Shrinks can never be sued for malpractice since it's "standard care" even if they kill you.
My Journey to Freedom, A Three-Part Story
I have written this story, a story of Exodus to Freedom, a thousand times. I retell it to myself late at night while I lie on my air mattress. In the mornings I may recall these amazing events while running along the beach straight into the sunrise. I walk my dog and tell the story again, hoping passers-by don’t think I’m talking to myself, lest I be called “loco.” But that has never happened. The one aim I had when coming to Uruguay has come true: Not one person here considers me crazy.
Close Encounters with Biopsychiatry
Editor's Note: The author has written her story using a different name. Here, she's explained why: "In my country, Poland, the stigma attached to the...
Psychiatry’s Failure to Acknowledge Who I Really Am
This is not how the mental health system should treat "psychotic" people. Mental health providers should treat them with compassion, empathy, respect, love and understanding. With a circle of loving and understanding people surrounding a person in crisis, I have no doubt that most "psychosis" would normalize in time.
My Mood, My Choice
With nothing left to lose, I’d reached the point at which I had to make a choice: to fight, or to give up. Though things seemed to not be going my way, I decided to take back control and make drastic changes in hopes to survive. That’s when yoga, meditation and nutrition came into my life, but first, I had to find a doctor to help me get off the medication I was currently on.
Why I Got Locked Up in the Madhouse (Twice)
I have grown a lot through my experiences, and would not have made the changes I have made, nor be the person I am today, had my madness not returned a second time. It returned because I did not pay enough attention to the wake-up call the first time around.
Informed Consent for Benzodiazepines: A Personal Account
I began to have transient moments where I would feel oddly disconnected from my environment or wake up and feel like I was coming out of my skin. I did not know it at the time, but I was experiencing interdose benzodiazepine withdrawal and it would end up leading me down a path of polypharmacy.