Friday, December 2, 2022

Comments by HaroldAMaio

Showing 18 of 18 comments.

  • We expect, despite the fact that education on the issue of these illnesses (no I will not call them “mental”) falls far short of need, accuracy. Without far better education not even Ken Burns can provide that accuracy.

    First “mental illness” is not “AN” illness, were that so, then “physical illness” is “AN” illness. What it is is a questionable category. It is false rhetoric. Schizophrenia is as real an illness as pneumonia.

    Second, under no circumstances is it either moral or ethical to tell anyone, children of whatever age, included, to place in their minds, that there is a “stigma” (sic) to these illnesses. It is false rhetoric. We educate youth, not alienate them, as we have allowed ourselves to alienate and be alienated.

    Third, Mr. Insel had every opportunity to both set and achieve goals of educating the public proplerly and fully while at NIH. He did not. He still has that opportunity. He is not seizing it. Patrick Kennedy and Pete Early, also, having the public eye, and public attention, have that opportunity. They are not doing so. And those are not ad hominem arguments. They are realities.

    Will we one day turn the corner and start addressing these illnesses with the same rigor we addressed polio, TB, and are addressing cancers, heart diseases, and covid? That corner is not yet on the horizon. It is not presently in our vision medically or politically.

    Harold A Maio

    Harold A Maio

  • If I can convince you to call it a “stigma”, whom can I not convince?

    And what do you make of it when someone declines to direct that term? When someone makes the argument, as it was made above, that the reality is prejudice and discrimination. Are they amiss?

    The model I use is WWII Germany: Those millions who agreed “there is a stigma” to specific people, and that much smaller number there who did not.

    Whom would you argue was amiss? Those who conformed or those who did not?

    Harold A Maio

  • …people with mental health conditions are often at higher risk of human rights violations like discrimination, stigma, and coercive measures than the general population,” the authors write.

    Where does one turn when professionals unite their voices with those taught or teaching there is a stigma to mental illnesses?

    As a reminder: Saying there is a stigma does not make it so. Even in the terrible time of Hitler, despite seducing millions to act with him on that prejudice, there were people who declined and instead did their best to save fellow citizens’ lives.

    So, the pertinent question is, Was there a stigma to Jews, or was there a hierarchy declaring there was? They are two separate and discrete issues.

    That same issue arises today: There is a stigma, there are people who declare there is.They are two separate camps.

    —-from one authority

    “Stigma” has been used as an all-purpose term for the negative attitudes faced by people with behavioral health issues. However, increasingly reporters** are using more precise terms, such as “prejudice”, “bias”, “social exclusion”, or “discrimination”.

    ** I cannot think of when it is warranted to accommodate anyone directing a stigma, or to use less than precise language.

    Edited: …people with mental health conditions are often at higher risk of human rights violations like discrimination, prejudice, and coercive measures than the general population,

    Harold A Maio, retired mental health editor

  • —- According to some authors, the language used in psychiatry can impact … perceptions, treatment, and informed consent

    The words we use direct our actions. And inactions. They drive our prejudices. Until we thoroughly examine the words we employ, we repeat acts better overcome.

    Mental health has made little to no effort to reform its language. As a result we hobble ourselves with it.

    Harold A Maio

  • Anosognosia, the inability to recognize (deny) particular realities, occurs widely in minds.

    It is what permitted generations of minds to support segregation, gigantic mental institutions, the pretense of separate but “equal.” It permitted minds to perform lobotomies.

    Harold A Maio

  • One does not have to go far:

    —-Over the last two decades, mental health and suicide-prevention efforts have blanketed the nation, targeting young people at home and on campus with campaigns to raise awareness, combat stigma, and steer them toward treatment.

    One does not have to go far to find an author willing to comply with those who say there is a stigma to mental illnesses, please reconsider editing that prejudice into print. That it is in the author’s mind may be so, it does not have to be in yours.

    Judiciously edited:

    Over the last two decades, mental health and suicide-prevention efforts have blanketed the nation, targeting young people at home and on campus with campaigns to raise awareness, — and steer them toward treatment.

    The article was about the increase in the number of people seeking help.

    Harold A Maio

  • —-A preference for bio-genetic explanations of mental illness, as seen in many mental health professionals, is associated with increased stigma and discrimination towards those with mental health diagnoses. Conversely, a preference for psycho-social explanations is associated with reduced stigma.

    When HItler created the “reality”, the stigma of Jews, he enlisted an entire culture to support that reality. For generations the US did the same, creating the “reality”, the stigma of rape; generations adhered to it. For a briefer and terrible time, we adhered to the created “reality”, the stigma of AIDS.

    The attraction, seduction, of these created “realities” interests me.

    Harold A Maio, retired mental health editor

  • So long as we, or any of our “advocates” argue (with those who say) there is a stigma to mental health issues, that we are stigmatized, they harm. We are widely discriminated against, in policies in acts, in language itself. We face prejudice from many corners, repesent the issue honestly.

    Editors please take note. You, too, need to become aware of the harm in repeating those words.

    Harold A Maio

  • Viewing Mental Differences on a Continuum 1 Reduces 2 Stigma

    You have set an interesting linguistic trap:

    1. “Reduces” means to hold onto some.
    2. Accepting a stigma means to accommodate those taught and teaching it.

    Neither makes ethical or moral sense. Nor is there is any historical model for such an approach. No one advocated “reducing” the stigma of rape, and following WW II no one advocated “reducing” the stigma of Jews. We rejected both.

    Harold A Maio, retired mental health editor