Comments by Jo Ann Cook

Showing 13 of 13 comments.

  • Once upon a time “worried” parents did not go to a child psychiatrist or community mental health clinic to seek help for discipline or challenging behavior problems. The traditional wisdom of parents of what is normal has been replaced by the opinions of a variety of professionals, teachers, psychologists, paediatricians and psychiatrists. Today, parents are told that any challenging behaviour, not paying attention, boredom, showing off, reacting with anger or aggression is a symptom of a problem which needs an expert to deal with it.

    Schools are at the forefront of this trend. Teachers have now been trained by business leaders to harass and direct parents to mental health professionals to solve academic and discipline problems. A raft of therapeutic programs, relational therapy, mindfulness, drugs etc are advocated by the community to solve what used to be a school’s responsibility, to educate the whole child. There is never any examination by therapists of the role that the mental health industry and the educational system plays in the successes and failures of children who spend the majority of their time in school each day. The rapid expansion of this corporate culture has been aided by industry advertisements, magazine articles and promotions by government health authorities.

    Realtional therapy might help a minority of parents. But one has to acknowledge it is an outgrowth of the current exploitation of children via the children’s mental health campaign in the nineties and 2000s. There are many factors inside the family (neglect, substance abuse, trauma, unemployment) and outside the family (current manipulation of children by mental health propaganda, and a competitive schooling system) that can lead children to be unhappy. Therapy is not the answer.

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  • “In the UK diagnosis and treatment is more likely to be given to children (mainly boys) from lower social classes and is associated with higher levels of behavioural problems, whereas in the US, middle-class children (again mainly boys), particularly in areas of lower academic achievement, are more likely to be diagnosed and treated.”

    Good article but there is an absence of the role of teachers who were trained by Big Pharma in the early nineties to look at children’s school failures as diseases of the brain. We know that poor children do less well in the school system, not because they are deprived or stressed. They can learn just as well as middle class children if given the same opportunities and recognised for their different experiences. There was a multitude of international studies in the eighties which showed that poor children failed two to three times as often as their middle class peers and this was discriminatory. Efforts were made by education leaders to try to correct these inequities until Big Pharma came along and convinced our politicians that these children were failing because they were diseased.

    You state that middle class children are diagnosed more in the USA. In fact in both Canada and the USA poor children are more likely to be diagnosed as a result of school inequities. A recent USA study shows 19 per cent of poor children below the poverty line were diagnosed ADHD compared to 13 per cent of middle class children who reported to be at or above the poverty line. Note the income for many of these so called middle class children in the USA were at or above the poverty line (26200 for a family of four). Anything under 40,000 for a family of four is disadvantaged in my view.

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  • Mad in America appears to be pandering to the psychology industry who are actively promoting an array of programs to treat “mental health” problems in our youth as an antidote to drug treatments. Some may believe that non drug programs are more beneficial than treating children with psychiatric drugs.

    However, we need to be mindful that psychologists and social workers in our schools have been coopted by the psychiatric/ pharmaceutical complex to promote the false belief that twenty per cent of our students are “sick” and need “mental health” treatment. The behaviours that Scott refers to are more likely students strung out on drugs. No physical exercise or mindfulness program can fix what is tragically ailing these drugged students.

    Scott states that school psychology is systems focused. Not true. School psychologists are hired by schools to diagnose learning and behavioural problems using a DSM lens. The assessments lead to referrals to physicians for drug treatments. Students who do not make the grade in school are labelled ADHD, ODD, depressed etc and recommended for drugs. Some are told they cannot return to school unless they are medicated. Psychologists who speak against this trend are disciplined or fired by school boards.

    Parents are being told a false story by school psychologists. Instead of informing parents that drug treatments only lead to more academic failure, erratic behaviour and anxiety, they go along with the lie that these students are unwell and can benefit from physical exercise programs, mindfulness and other skills programs.

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  • It is frightening.

    Not only are professionals being bullied to label and drug our youth but school children and adolescents are being used to sell false and dangerous “treatments” for themselves and to their peers. These “mental health” programs are mandated by government agencies. It is brainwashing and governments need to be held to account, in addition to drug companies and psychiatry.

    Aldous Huxley in Brave New World wrote that a really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced ..To make them love it is the task assigned, in present day states, to ministries of propaganda, newspaper editors and school-teachers.”

    Read my latest post Drug Firms Promote False Cures to Schools.

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  • In July 2018, New York State passed a “mental health act“ mandating all students in elementary and secondary schools be taught a “mental health” curriculum.

    Most American states and provinces in Canada have for years directed teachers and support staff (social workers, psychologists) to adopt new ways of thinking about the emotional and behavioral problems of students, now called “mental health problems or disorders”. Over a five year period beginning in 2009, teachers and staff in my province of Ontario were force fed “mental health” propaganda repeatedly in weekly meetings, workshops etc. and asked to target and seek out students with suspected “mental disorders” and refer them for treatments from community services and psychiatric units in hospitals, which operated under a DSM criteria.

    Now students are being force fed “mental health” nonsense about “mental disorders” and the need for psychiatric drug treatments to become successful healthy adults. Programs such as mindfulness, Friends program, Collaborative Problem Solving, feelings awareness groups etc. are used to mask the real intent of “mental health” awareness which is to label students with “mental disorders” and promote psychiatric drugs. Students are even told their daily problems are due to faulty wiring in their brains yet no one appears to be calling out this most harmful heresy.

    This massive deception is being carried out by industry and government working together. Workers in the schools have no choice but to resign if they do not comply. .After 25 years in my school board, I could not find one other school person who was willing to challenge this abusive practice.

    Why are consumer advocates not speaking out against drugs and services being promoted to children inside our classrooms?

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  • Thank you Peter and Michael

    The approval of the Monarch eTNS is a continuation of a trend which was envisioned by Aldous Huxley in his book Brave New World. Huxley predicted a future in which science would be used by governments and corporate bodies to control its citizens, first by infant conditioning and later drugging children and adults with the aid of drugs, technology, silence about truth and presenting the positive sides of propaganda.

    Note that the mental health industry has invaded our schools with the blessing of governments and is currently brainwashing children and teens to believe they are diseased and need drugs to be happy and successful. One of the industry cheerleaders of this children’s mental health campaign reported that “We have learned that it is relatively simple to destigmatize mental health with youth”.

    The public, including our experts and educators, have gone along with this. Any naysayer has been met with silence, shunning or persecution. It is hardly surprising that Anderson Cooper objected to Marianne Williamson’s views on psychotropics and depression. I heard similar views from principals and community experts on a daily basis at special education meetings in public schools. I vividly remember a school conference of six experts, including a principal, harass the parents of a grade six student, who was not performing in class, and even though he was on Prozac for anxiety, the parents were pushed to add an ADHD drug to his regimen at this meeting. His difficulties were indeed social yet the principal described the need for a stimulant to a child who needed glasses. The parents were visibly distressed.

    Few parents want their children drugged. They are misinformed and often harassed by our community leaders. Some may be on drugs themselves, are confused and have been convinced by their doctors that the issue with their child is hereditary.

    I wonder why a post on Anderson Cooper gets more angry responses than the Stop the Abuse of Children. If we are ever going to make a dent in this tyranny, we need to recognize how dangerous our schools have become for our youth and take action against government sanctioned child abuse.

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  • Thank you Paula

    I share your concerns, particularly how MIA can inadvertently reinforce DSM diagnoses and the need to query current drug approaches. The same goes for some so-called non-drug approaches to the problems doctors prescribe drugs for.

    The market for expanding psychiatric drugs has been skillfully and deceptively crafted by psychiatry and drug companies, let alone supported by schools and governments. We are often unaware that so called non drug resources are actually promoting labels and drug treatments for children. You suggested that parents and others check out MIA parenting resources although in an earlier blog post you expressed some reservations that MIA was reinforcing labels by using DSM terminology and inadvertently was supporting diagnoses.

    You may be guilty of the same by recommending the following.

    “Barring that, Mad in America’s Parent Resources section’s Drug Information pages offer summaries of the latest science on the major classes of psychoactive drugs prescribed to children and youth. The authors of that section also discuss non-drug approaches to the problems for which doctors typically prescribe them. (Editor’s note: See links at bottom of the page.)”

    Please note, for example, that MIA states that one of the ten best non-drug approaches is the Collaborative Problem Solving approach by Ross Greene. I suggest you read the book. In chapter 9, page 176,
    the reader is told by Greene that some challenging kids need a “little extra help” to participate in Plan B, like behavior and mind-altering psychiatric medications. Greene says that some kids are so emotionally reactive, irritable, impulsive or short fused that Plan B needs to be supplemented with ADHD medications, antidepressants and even a class of the most disabling medications, antipsychotic drugs, namely, Risperdal and Abilify. Greene fails to mention that these medications can cause a number of disruptive behaviors in children, such as aggression, tantrums, mania, psychosis, hallucinations, sedation and suicidal ideations, which can lead to the very behaviors his program says it can fix.

    i have complained about this misleading approach and others before to no avail. Greene in particular has made millions selling his phony theory to parents and teachers all across America. Children are the victims. Please MIA delete this reference. It is a marketing tool to expand the use of drugs, not a non-drug approach.

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  • I agree with Dr. Caplan. i have similar concerns, particularly the information that is being given to parents in some posts and videos which reinforce false psychiatric terminology,and even recommend counselling and psychiatric medication to children for disorders which do not exist..
    Bob Whitaker supported my point of view when I wrote to him last December.
    However I still read posts that concern me. I was recently told that these posts are not necessarily the views of Mad in America. Where then do parents and survivors get accurate information?

    Jo Ann

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  • It is important to note that we are talking about ‘suffering” children and so-called OCD behaviours which are extremely rare. In all my years in the school system I came across only one boy that was diagnosed by a psychiatrist after he was put on medication. We have created an epidemic of disorders out of normal childhood behaviours. Children do not belong in therapy. Children often react to the stresses and tensions in their family and school and to treat the child alone is misplaced, ineffective and stigmatizing. See the post by Pacific Dawn on why children do not belong in therapy.

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  • I agree with Steve. The terms “OCD” like “ADHD” and “bipolar” are DSM inventions and have no scientific basis. Using them only reinforces the notion they exist, creates a self-fulfilling prophecy and is harmful to the child and parent. Parents need to be warned of the hazards of letting a teacher or doctor diagnose childhood behaviours as abnormal and requires medical or psychological treatment. Once a child is given a label, she will be subject to unacceptable risks, especially if the suggested interventions do not work. When therapy does not work, and there are always social factors at play, therapists or educators will suggest treating the child with chemicals by asserting that it will improve the child”s ability to socialize or learn. A parent’s best course of action is to avoid any professional who suggests that their child is suffering from an “attention deficit disorder” or some other vague defined conditions such as “OCD”.

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  • “Yeah, yeah, and that’s how they’ve got to children, isn’t it, with ADHD for instance? You show me a child with a diagnosis of ADHD and I’ll show you a family that needs some help of some kind. One of the problems with identifying the family as a cause or solution is that it’s seen as family blaming, and we’ve been told we mustn’t blame families. Well, that’s very well, that’s all good, but sometimes families do need some help.”

    I hope the help you will be giving families is to be upfront and tell them that the diagnosis is BS, the medication harmful and an exploitation of children and adolescents by pharmaceutical companies. Teachers are usually the first to diagnose students with ADHD because they have been extensively trained by the industry to view certain behaviors as a brain disease. This is a lie.
    It is the educational system that needs the help.. Parents do not willingly put their children on drugs. In my experience they are fearful and opposed to it but they are harassed by psychologists, social workers, teachers and doctors to medicate their children with mind altering drugs. Have you ever worked in the school system?

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  • You are right Bradford. And yes the public does not know what is going on which is why I wrote my book. I am aware of the awful tragic situations you mention. It is not my intention to minimize what is going on. On the contrary I want the public to know that the mental health campaign in their schools is not about health, it is about expanding the market for pharmaceutical products while drugging and disabling children and adolescents.
    The parents and teachers in my schools all went along with the industry line that children were suffering from mental disorders. The “stated” goal of government and psychiatry is to create positive strategies to enable children to be successful at school and have better adult outcomes. The opposite is happening.
    The media has also aided and abetted this criminal activity. The real stories of children’s experiences with psychiatric drugs needs to be told. Some of these tragic stories have been described in my book.

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