Sunday, June 20, 2021

Comments by J

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  • It was Jay’s extraordinary luck and intuition that allowed him to live until age 74. For normies, that’s an ordinary death. But, Mad people are often killed by psychiatry in their 60’s, 50’s, and even their 40’s. Jay’s determination to live a full lifespan was already inspiring, and reading about his long career in Mad health care fills me with pride and hope. Though he should have had a little more time, I’m glad he achieved so much in his life.

  • I love it when MIA posts stories from veterans. You would think lamestream psychiatry would be less inclined to scam them, torture them, and kill them. Who would have guessed that a veteran with trouble sleeping would be treated like a “loser and a sucker”? Thank God Ms. Shea got away from psychiatry before it ruined her life forever.

  • To a normie, this story would appear to recount the most horrific sort of health care fraud. But, survivors of psychiatry know well the trajectory and fallout of mental health “treatment” that can maim a body and upend a life. I sense a collective shudder at themes of Dani’s story: how she was expected to remain “loyal” to everyone (friends, employers, quacks, etc.) but herself, a “standard” of medical progress that she couldn’t reach without subjecting herself to more and more torture, a demotion from woman to “baby” when she acted upon her intuition, which had developed from decades of life experience. Let’s hope she sues her quacks for every last cent.

  • So much “mental illness” and “learning disability” originates from dysfunctional schools. Dana, fortunately, was not thrown *too* far down the psychiatry/behavioral health #shithole . But, her schools forced her to “learn how to do school” through trial and error, which wasted years of her time; they withheld support whenever she questioned her “diagnoses”; and they held her self-worth hostage to teachers who sometimes excluded her from “mainstream” or “advanced placement” classes, despite her ability to complete those classes. This trajectory of manufactured “failure” could have wiped Dana’s life out. Her strength and determination were instrumental in salvaging most of her future. She should be very proud of herself and never lose sight of her capacity for self-protection and growth.

  • The problem of Narcoticized children is really a problem of our society’s dangerous approach to raising children: We give them only one place to be raised, only one place to learn, only one way to view their place in society.

    If any one of those abuses gave way, we’d see an end to psychiatry’s stranglehold on youth.

  • Daniel was maimed – elevated prolactin, ulcers, migraines – almost exactly as I had been, on psychiatric narcotics which had also been prescribed to me, in response to stressors I had also experienced (toxic schools, no escape, unaccountable law enforcement), and under circumstances (“Suburban Lifestyle Dream”, conscientious parents who were duped by quacks, same age) identical to mine.

    We aren’t an outrageous coincidence or two disgruntled losers who simply need “more Lithium”. Psychiatry failed us; it nearly killed us, and vocal ex-patients are a small minority of psychiatry’s abject failure.

  • Ted’s work is so important. Psychiatry survives, in part, by scamming people into viewing it as more powerful than it really is. But, logistics work against that ruse. If psychiatry can’t wreck your life in 5-10 years, it stands very little chance of EVER wrecking it, permanently. By sharing that information with his clients, Ted improves their life chances, no matter how they fare in court. We need many more advocates like him.

  • Psychiatry’s excuse for throwing unsuspecting people into iatrogenic apocalypse boils down to, “They were dysfunctional *before* I treated them!”. And, Sherry’s story exposed it as an absolute lie. Diagnoses and VERY dangerous drugs really are psychiatry’s first-response to “ordinary” stressors. The irony in Sherry’s life was what psychiatry had subjected her to, for so many years, as she maintained a state of imperiled existence that would have been viewed by any clinician as robust, “ordinary” health. She was working hard, conscientious in meeting her domestic obligations, trusting – and paying – her authority figures, and requested support while she managed her “ordinary” life, which sounded quite nice, but also demanded a LOT, perhaps an excess, of her energy and time. Psychiatry’s refusal to care for Sherry in a safe and basic way (Those quacks eschewed so many better alternatives to drugs: massage therapy, counseling, referrals to elder care services for her mother, etc..) was a direct consequence of its unconditional animus towards ANY level of individual need. That “profession” is a #shithole of hatred, recklessness, and waste.

  • This piece was one I knew I would love, and still I’m stunned by its passion, variety, and spirit of defiance toward everything Jaffe profited from and, possibly, stood for. I was one of the MANY Mad people who heard about Jaffe’s death and knew I would, for the foreseeable future, breathe more freely. Lobbyists as evil as he was come along, maybe once in a generation. Ms. Gilmore is right about the DECADES of work ahead of us to end Jaffe’s reign of terror. But, his death will make our journey to progress that much more attainable.

  • Whew! I didn’t expect to hear a hopeful answer to the question of psychiatry’s potential for redemption. Throughout this piece, psychiatry’s failure, predation, and excuses were prominent themes. They definitely should have been presented first, even if readers couldn’t help but steel themselves to answer Susanne’s question, “Will Psychiatry Ever Change”, in the negative. And, Kudos to NYT for giving her a platform. When her article was published a few months back, I read it and shared it with everyone I know. Thank goodness it made a positive difference to a few clinicians.

  • I’m glad you could wring a bit of humor from that. When I read it, I could only gasp in horror. It should be hard to believe that an author could be such a callous and brazen liar. But, indeed, Kolker is. Thank goodness he’s being called out now.

  • Hidden Valley Road is, certainly, the most overhyped, intellectually lazy, and outlandishly abusive book of the century. Kolker, apparently, hoped for his book to transcend the “misery memoir” genre, but that’s exactly where he landed. And, how could he not? All of his “facts” about “schizophrenia”, Mad life, and the Galvin family HAD to come from Lindsay and Margaret Galvin, as they were the *only* members of their family to decide who could write the “family story“, to borrow their disingenuous shorthand for Hidden Valley Road, their magnum opus of absolution for Mimi, their menace of a mother.

  • Jesus! Lisa is too much. 30 days and 30 nights of #FAKESCIENCE torture was her “punishment” for being visibly traumatized by her 17 years of sexual abuse. Her family deserved every insult, death wish, and damning criticism she could hurl at them. Same for her quacks. Instead, she focused on reform within the psychiatric establishment, as if that were a realistic goal.

    While I admire Lisa’s self-discipline and unshakeable decency, I’m sure I can’t begin to comprehend it. And, few of us possess her level of self-awareness. She knew she would not break one of the “rules” for speaking openly about Madness: Take it easy on your family, even if that means taking it hard on yourself. This obedience might keep her true to who she is – a follower of rules. But, it cuts a break to so many abusers. It’s appalling to know they’re still getting ahead on the strength of Lisa’s integrity.

  • So much torture, scam, and legal overreach for . . . “alleged” loitering?

    Good Lord! It would have been cheaper and more humane to jail her for 90 days. And, even that would have been excessive. I believe she was terrorized by psychiatry because she had the audacity to live into her seventies, while maintaining some quality of life. In first-world countries, people like her are not “supposed” to exist. She was a visible reminder of the limits on psychiatry’s power to wreck Mad lives. Her elder-lifestyle was ideal – calm, autonomous, and supportive. But, it also posed a significant liability to psychiatry. #FAKESCIENCE couldn’t afford to let a woman like her survive.

  • Well, this is an especially cruel encounter with psychiatry. That quack-fest sold its dangerous “care” to a loving and productive mom who needed help for her son, killed him, somehow, after only a few years, and then quacked mom out when she could not “adjust” to her massive and eternal loss.

    If I were her, I’d probably take a knee on those brutes.

  • During every one of my psychiatric hospitalizations, inmates were subjected to staffers’ knees on their necks. Most of their lives were spared only by the fact that assault was a means to an end for their perpetrators, whose goal was to chemically rape them, as opposed to killing them. No one should endure this brutality or ever suggest it as a palliative for the fallout of systemic racism. Even if it were “less” abusive and prejudiced than traditional incarceration (and, it’s NOT), it’s still enabling the nouveau-Jim Crow society that drives POC Mad to begin with. We need to #DefundPsychiatry right after we #DefundThePolice .

  • Should we diagnose Cheeto? Absolutely not. Psychiatry is more dangerous than he is, and it will become impossible to control, if we allow it to topple the most powerful person on earth.

    There are better ways to rid ourselves of Disaster #45, starting with this year’s election.


  • I suspect our Corona woes will shape up to be a boon to Mad Americans in the 2020’s, just like Rep. Tim Murphy’s disasters (legislative, political, and personal) of the 2010’s. Both the virus and its mismanagement are primed to boost public support for Mad-friendly laws and policies. Perhaps it’s callous to say, but I urge us not to let this crisis go to waste.

  • Rosenberg’s “relationship” to his sister was downright horrifying. He characterized her as “hopeless”, and a “burden”, and, despite her permanently marginalized status in her family, he held *her* accountable for everyone’s problems. Then he entered a profession where he could easily prey on vulnerable, hated, and death-bound strangers. There’s a reason why he created this documentary AFTER his sister died – at age 55! – from 30 years of “treatment”. Destroyed as she was by her family, he was, nonetheless, threatened by her ability to rebel against the power he exerted over her life.

  • Outstanding interview! And, this book is a treasure. That much is evident from the question posed to Segrest by her *very* triggered colleague, “Is your book ‘anti-psychiatry’?”. He just HAD to interrogate her motive for writing this book, despite her generous description (“I find psychiatrists doing both execrable and very commendable things . . . “) of psychiatry’s potential and despite her decade-plus of research on her subject matter. Anything that prompts this response from the establishment is right up my alley.

  • Right now, we’ve got a front row seat to the “decompensation” of America’s able-normative majority. #CoronaPanic has turned them into hoarding, doomsaying, reclusive, bigoted freaks. Their aggressive and irrational behavior (40 packages of toilet paper? Really?) has brought society to its knees. And, in the midst of a global pandemic, their antics are especially threatening to our health and well-being. Yet, nobody wants to put them in the cage. Not even when their burdensome choices are shown to be part of a pattern with them, one that predates the Coronavirus. So, I don’t want to hear a damn thing about the “intolerability” of Madness in its hostile state. No one should be put under a psychiatric choke-chain.

  • If the Boston Globe weren’t staffed by sanist hacks, it might actually try to do its job and force this quack to PROVE how “noncompliance” would impose ANY measurable detriment to anyone’s life outcomes. Plenty of people, some of whom read the Globe, have ditched psychiatry and resumed their lives: completed their educations, launched their careers, raised their families, found their voices. #FAKESCIENCE should not be allowed to hype its overblown and baseless “predictions” for ANY population, and particularly not one as vulnerable as ours. Whether we’re healthy (as demonstrated by the vitality of our LIVES, not our score on a BS DSM checklist) or not, quacks would sooner kill us than to deal with the inconvenience we create for them, merely by *existing*. Realistically, there are very few people whose lives are *worse* off without psychiatry. Biswas hawks his sanist “psycho killer/corpse”, because, literally, everyone else – the homeless, the hermits, the mainstreamed or semi-mainstreamed noncompliant Mad – belongs to a large and “silent” majority of psychiatric dissidents, most of whom struggle less or no more than they did “as patients”.

  • Edward Shorter, the quack whose “opinions” NYTimes included in their backhanded obit, could give a shit about Mad Rights or Mad survival. That he was allowed to pollute Bonnie’s obit made it clear to the reader whose agendas truly mattered: those of psychiatry and the NYTimes, which may, perhaps, be correctly viewed as one and the same. By denigrating a woman they couldn’t ignore, yet did not want to recognize, Mad people, those of us who own dogeared copies of Bonnie’s books and who owe our liberty to her brilliant vision, got similarly denigrated. We got smeared as crazy dupes who don’t deserve to mourn the scholar that led us to the lives we cherish. More #FAKENEWS from the “failing” New York Times.

    MIA, please let NYT know how offended we are at its hatchet job on Bonnie’s obit and request that Shorter’s quotes be removed from this final account of her life.

  • No one should dismiss the close parallels between a fundie upbringing and a quacked-our adulthood. Each form of tyranny presents the same atrocious patterns of social dysfunction – censorship, lies, a coerced surrender of personal will. Worse yet, the endgame of psychiatry is, literally, a plight of biblical proportions: physical illness of an iatrogenic nature that is painful, debilitating, and lethal. Jane’s 40 years of “treatment” dragged on without a single moment to validate its mammoth cost to her health, her safety, her happiness, and her abundant potential. If anyone else but me has ever wondered about psychiatry’s capacity for fraud, stop. After reading Jane’s story, we can state with confidence that its fraud is an infinite scourge.

  • Makes perfect sense. You recovered from a re-traumatizing relationship in your own way: through safe and wide open dialogue, restorative stillness, and, yes, a dash of Madness. Unlike a lot of Mad people, you’ve been blessed with the freedom to practice self-care throughout your life as an adult. That probably explains why your healing began immediately, and ended with zero drama. It’s the outcome we can count on, once we’re ready and able to grow without delay and without psychiatry’s burdens.

    I give thanks for this essay.

  • Yeah . . . I remember these “symptoms” of withdrawal. In addition to many of those experienced by Mr. Blumke, I also developed internal bleeding, which led me to the ER, where I immediately was threatened with involuntary commitment, if I didn’t “consent” to “go upstairs” as an inpatient. Like Mr. Blumke, I was lucky to get out of psychiatry alive. His life is a miracle, and I’m glad he’s safe and free today.

  • It’s good that you’re open about this atrocity. Most of the public has no clue that NGRI (Not Guilty By Reason of Insanity) is really just an 8th Amendment wipeout: assaulted with psychological torture, exploited as unpaid and unwilling lab subjects, and subjected to an imprisonment that is disproportionate to ANY crime, let alone one that only involved property damage. This is psychiatry at its absolute worst, and I’m sorry that it’s robbed you of so much freedom and time.

  • YES!!! You won the comments section, Noel! That’s yet another reason to dump the BS “schizophrenia” Dx. Basically, it assaults trauma survivors a second time. On top of enduring the real-world trauma that drove you Mad in the first place, you’re expected to contend with even more trauma, under the guise of “help” for your initial injustice or loss. While you’re desperate for care and totally defenseless, you’re hastily shuttled into an epic bio-scam, which depletes the last of your agency on a perp-apologists’ concept of trauma. Specifically, it dictates a “threshold” of trauma that can only be set by a network of authority structures, none of which are duty-bound to you, the survivor. Antagonize those goons, and they’ll designate you as “sick”, not “wounded” and “victimized”. If you become too “needy”, too “unruly”, or too “strident” about your rights, you’ll get quacked instead of healed. Or, perhaps, if you exist in dark or female flesh, you’ll be quacked on sight, and bypass an phony debate over how you hurt and what you need. And, your best-case scenario? The Annita special, where a quack can see value your full potential? That puts you where she is now – successful in every possible way, yet constantly forced to qualify her worth with her “Dx upgrade”. No thanks!

  • Annita, your recovery and achievements are extraordinary and much-deserved. For anyone who reads your story, the takeaway will be a new or renewed trust in the healing power of patience, respect, and purpose. Any of your readers can heal exactly as you have. They understand that we can counsel, educate, and employ *any* Mad person. Whether or not they’re in “treatment”, they’ll attempt to save their lives, in the same way that yours was saved – with loyal, reciprocal, and comprehensive support. You didn’t “need” a “better” Dx, in order to build your life. Neither does anyone else. And, I hope you’re cognizant of those facts, while you’re caring for your clients. Despite your apparent faith in the #FAKESCIENCE “schizophrenia” label, it remains a useless, biased, and hateful slur, and as potent an agent of atrocity as it was in decades past. For your client’s sake, if not for your own, please don’t ever forget that.

  • Woooh! This woman’s biggest problem wasn’t even #FAKESCIENCE . It was those Munchausen parents, who used psychiatry as a means to “parent” Jennifer forever. They, clearly, resented their duty to respect her as an adult, and offer her the sort of support that one provides an adult: domestic care (caring for grandkids, cooking meals, pep talks for overwhelmed spouses, etc.) and strategies (tips on setting schedules, fending off unreasonable demands, etc.) for balancing their day job, their family, and their lofty professional goals. So, whenever Jennifer’s life became a life-sucking trap, they quacked her out of it, instead of helping her stay in it, and fix it up. Jennifer need to quit psychiatry, for sure. But, in order to achieve that, she’ll probably have to quit her parents, too. Were it not their possessiveness, she’d easily have ditched psychiatry a decade ago.

  • Yeeesh! Women were treated like POWs in this family! Psychiatry or not, they had NO chance to live well. Somehow, I suspect that psychiatry was, primarily, a legal means of battering these women, as opposed to a clumsy and brutal tool for disciplining them. For the men in this family, a slow-motion homicide by #FAKESCIENCE had been a handy replacement for a quick and unlawful homicide by assault.

  • You were NEVER “worthless”, Graciela. Not at your “sickest”. Not at your most pathologized. Not ever. And, those “opportunities”? All an illusion. I’ve enjoyed years off the psychiatric narcotics, and my liberty has allowed me to finally grasp the truth about potential: It’s NOT a bitter, and, inevitably, futile fight between you and the world. If *anyone* is waiting, fighting, obeying, and learning, and STILL falling further and further behind, they’re NOT “failing”. Rather, they’re BEING FAILED, MISERABLY! Even the biggest self-saboteur will pull back before they put themselves in the gutter. The instinct to survive is universal and unstoppable. And, it’s especially potent among victimized people, such as those who’ve been tortured by #FAKESCIENCE . For now and forever, LOOK AROUND when you’re plummeting into the abyss. Odds are, you’ll see a loud and prowling mob of sick f*cks. And, at your age, you’re bound to quickly recognize their lying, brutish, and manipulative antics. Despite the massive cost of your experience, it’s, nonetheless, a gift, at this point. Use it. When whack-jobs start to invade your life, run FROM them, not TO them. No psychiatry. No toxic family members. No dead-end schools or jobs. Restructure your life to lock them all out of it. Then, make your next move. No matter what you’ve been told or what your fears are, you CAN stay away from the #FAKESCIENCE clown world. Except for psychiatry’s “true believers”, there is NO ONE “too sick” or “too undeserving” of an un-quacked life. So, get it, hold onto it, and don’t let it go.

  • Well, I suppose I’ll start my comment with a judgy aside: “Special occasions” are packed with petty pressures. They DO NOT mix with booze!!! My special occasions have been substance-free for years. If you *really* want to let the good times roll, don’t jeopardize them with poison. Most of your guests are people you see infrequently. On any given day, they’ll carry burdens that you’ll never see and never try to fix. So, don’t force them to “moderate” their consumption of your “treats”. Celebrations can not accommodate the testing of human limits. They’re meant to be joyful events, not scrutinizing ones. To acquire the former, you’ll have to ditch the latter.

    And Ms. Wildhood was right – Mom and Pop set this mess in motion long ago. Honestly, it seems like Sis sat on too much resentment for way too long. If she’d been raised to speak when she was hurting, she wouldn’t have tried, in vain, to drown her feelings. A better family would have encouraged her to speak by herself, for herself, regardless of the outcome. By the age of 24, one should not still feel compelled to undercut their efforts to manage their relationships. Megan’s sister MUST find a way to break that habit. Otherwise, she’s doomed to lose her marriage, along with everything else in her life.

    The same can be said for Megan. She also paid the price for that boozed-fueled engagement dinner. When people get invited to parties, they expect to be welcomed or asked to leave. They shouldn’t expect any less than that, even if they’re feuding with the host. As resentful as Megan’s sister was, you really have to wonder if she ever wanted Megan at her dinner. I wouldn’t put it past Mom and Pop to guilt-trip Megan’s sister into adding Megan’s name to the guest list. The drama totem is high in this family, and those two clowns are at the top of it. Megan may not be owed an apology from her sister and brother, but she’s probably owed one from her parents. Their antics were outrageous and deeply hurtful, and they shouldn’t be repeated. Neither sister deserves to go through this again.

  • Hey, all. I got quacked in high school, too. Only, by then, the public schools were defacto “brokers” for our friendly neighborhood pill mills. By the time I quit high school, I was already butchered by #FAKESCIENCE .

    Fortunately, I escaped psychiatry, in much the same way that Starr did. School and work were essential to my post-psychiatry life. But, first, I spent YEARS on my trial-and-error efforts to de-quack. I had to. The psychiatric narcotics had weakened and destabilized my body. My plans had to go on hold, until my body was able to pursue them.

  • Actually, Manuela, your desired system of care would be INCREDIBLY productive. You hit the ice pick on the head, when you said, “We have more bean counters than we have beans.”. There would be PLENTY of time and resources, if we only trimmed the fat of #FAKESCIENCE . That racket is rife with fraud and force. And, those are guaranteed wastes, no matter the context.

  • Once again, we see how absolutely evil psychiatry is. Through neglect and force, it has wrecked Anja’s life. She would have been fine, if psychiatry had done its job – put a reasonable, prompt, and thorough plan in place for her. Instead, it neglected her, until she couldn’t be ignored by ANYONE. Then psychiatry caged her, as it knew it would do from the start. Every moment of Anja’s caging was premeditated and preventable.

  • Well, there it is – mom and dad must not be narcoticized, despite their obvious shortcomings. But, their kiddos? Drug them early, shut them up, and never think twice about gambling with their futures. That double-standard is the sick moral calculus of #FAKESCIENCE psychiatry.

    I remember how affirming it felt for me to live with as much freedom as the average 70 year old. By then, I’d logged about 7 months off the psychiatric narcotics. There I was, twenty-something years old, and happy to live as though my life were almost over. Yet, it was a ‘YUGE improvement, compared to my years in “treatment”. My unwanted intimacy with death was my existential breaking point with #FAKESCIENCE . It was the moment when I’d reached a long-term resolve to bail on that lethal fraud. My prior “noncompliance” was driven by short-term needs – my appearance, a temp job, a diploma. But, years of psychiatry had taken their toll, and slowly exacted a long-term cost to my life. And, so, I quit psychiatry only then, once I’d borne the heaviest of burdens.

  • Don’t blame yourself, George. You got duped by the #FAKESCIENCE , as millions of people have been. People shouldn’t pay an unbearable price for trusting the so-called “experts”. They alone deserve to be blamed for the death of your daughter. I extend my deepest condolences to you and everyone who loved her.

  • The caging process is nearly as unbearable as the “care” you’re subjected to, once you’re locked-down. To have all your liberty erased by a lie is a deep and inexcusable injustice. It’s so easy to perpetrate that terror, and virtually impossible to escape it. An abuse of power is at least comprehensible and, possibly, vulnerable to counteragression. But, outright fraud is an ambush, not the start of a fight. Extreme retribution is the only hope to rectify it.

  • See, this is the difference between a COMPETENT caregiver and a total quack. Chaya consistently and carefully balances her needs with the needs of those she’s helping. A quack, on the other hand, will immediately sink to aggressive means of dodging even the slightest inconvenience. If there was a professional like Chaya in every town, psychiatry would never rise again.

  • Christ! Ekaterina is doing more time for Madness than most folks do for a f*ck*ng DWI!!! Adherents of #FAKESCIENCE are “threatened” by ALL identities which are self-made or self-selected. It was easy for the quacks to pounce on Ekaterina’s bond with Anne Frank. Most people know who she was, and would, obviously, prefer to detach from her wretched existence. But, really, Ekaterina’s quacks have, essentially, forbade her from preserving any life or sense of self. She could describe her identity in a manner that sounds “normal”, or openly aspire to “normal” adult goals, and she would STILL get quacked by those abusive psychiatrists. When psychiatry saw that I wouldn’t quit school, wouldn’t quit work, and wouldn’t really “accept” my so-called “illness”, it went f*ck*ng nuclear on me, just as Ekaterina’s quacks did to her. So, she’s absolutely right. There is no room for psychiatry in any *real* life. And, psychiatry will not spare you any shred of personal integrity. To keep anything of yours, anything at all, you have to bail on the #FAKESCIENCE forever.

  • To fuel this momentum of liberty, the Mad ex-patient will need to secure a safe and sustainable role within society. It’s, primarily, a game of defense, regardless of the person’s pre-psychiatry status. #FAKESCIENCE is meant to be a form of social homicide, like being convicted of a major felony, or getting #MeTooed . So, when a Mad person starts their post-psychiatry life, they’re bucking a universal fear – of the undead. Whether they thrive without psychiatry or not, they’ll be aggressed upon, simply for trying. The public has no desire or ability to cope with a “corpse” (i.e. YOU). That’s why it tries again to bury you, and why it grabs a new kill-bag. This one holds the less-potent substitutes for psychiatric terrorism: unattainable “benchmarks” of “recovery”, homogenized narratives on ANY Mad-related issue, and reckless demands that we “sink or swim”, should we ever seek help away from psychiatry. Sera’s observations are painfully, frighteningly accurate. ”Muh hipster sanism” is Mad oppression and Mad genocide, Act II.

  • For Mad people who wish to self-actualize, perhaps for the very first time, the disengagement stage is probably the most important. To speak plainly, I’ll call that stage “The End”. It’s the stage when you’re physically, if not emotionally, unable to “comply” with #FAKESCIENCE . It took me years to construct even one clear thought for my life-changing journey to me. And, it began when I, literally, repelled – not rebelled – from psychiatry.

  • You’re absolutely right. That IS a win. We see a film about a real human being who got murdered by psychiatry – the very system which was so flagrantly touted as “helpful” in an American court of law. Hell, I’ll watch this movie, if only for its painful, yet glorious moment when #FAKESCIENCE gets exposed as a barbarous scam that kills you long before you’ll ever expect it to!

  • This is so true. Quacks could always predict my plans, recognize what my dreams were, and, initially, convince me to confide in them. Shamefully, I’d gotten to the point where I’d begun to call them “mom” by mistake. These are the reasons why it took me so long to leave them. Spend enough time around folks with no boundaries, and you’ll start to believe that you can’t have them either.

  • Whatever your views are of Laren’s wild youth (drugs, debt, premarital sex, elaborate vacations, etc.), there is no disputing one obvious fact: It should NOT have ended with psychiatric assault and torture. Plenty of people have pushed their lives to the limit, and society has let them alone to learn and enjoy and atone for their choices. Laren deserved that freedom, as well. Especially since he didn’t go wild on his own. None of Laren’s desires would have materialized, if not for the insane greed of his creditors. Had quacks not stuffed him full of poison, Laren’s mind would have been sharp enough to notice his need to de-escalate his lifestyle. It’s also deeply traumatizing for ANYONE – let alone a young man – to suffer a de facto loss of parental rights. Laren’s behavior was caused by all the vipers in his life, not by a so-called “chemical imbalance”. He was the last person to mess up, but the ONLY one to ever pay for his decisions. On top of that, Laren’s punishment FAR outweighed the scope of his humdrum blunders (Remember, we’re a nation of people whose appetites are big, in every way, for everything.) And, the long-term benefit from his “treatment”? Zilch. For these reasons, Laren’s judgments of psychiatry have always been correct. Its sole purpose IS to cripple and disempower society’s “undesirables”. Good on him for rejecting that #FAKESCIENCE and moving forward with his life.

  • Lord, this was stunning! And it hits so close to home for me. A “wide open hold” is, basically, what my family did for me. They never stopped me from preparing for my suicide: buying a gun, keeping it at home, leaving me alone to use it, etc. But, they never accelerated my race to the grave. My family told me they loved me, and that I could lead a good life. They told me to just try a little longer to live, that I deserved to live, and that life could become safe for me again. I’m still alive because of their love for me AND their respect for my liberty. Sera’s right. There is NEVER a good time to criminalize suicide.

    We must also do a MUCH better job of condemning the #1 precipitant of suicide – TOXIC FAMILIES!!! The vast majority of people DO NOT “commit suicide”. That is, they don’t assess their lives, identity some intractable, intolerable problem, see NO ONE who caused or hyped it, and, then, decide to rest forever. Instead, the typical suicide results from at least one lengthy period of abuse, neglect, manipulation, and COMPLETE disempowerment. And, intimate relationships are ground zero for that constellation of atrocity. If cops should be called on anyone, they should be called on the Munchausens and domestic abusers. Cage enough of them, and there will be fewer suicides. Believe it! Hell, it’s about the only way to quickly, easily, and permanently achieve a ‘YUGE reduction in death-by-despair. But, do we have the balls to even propose that? No way! We’re ALL stained with the blood of suicide. Until we get tough on perps, our humanity will continue to drown in that filth.

  • You’re right about all of this, Noel. Psychiatry’s cruelty and quackery are salient, once more, in its latest perpetration of crimes against humanity. This time, #FAKESCIENCE has targeted youth who are undocumented immigrants. In American society, we’ll valorize ”muh rights”, yet STILL tolerate a large number of abuses, any one of which could singlehandedly wreck this country. Our Overton window is pretty much wide open. To close any amount of it, people normally endure years of oppression, and, still, more years in a hard fight for justice. They must perpetually spearhead their own progress. By contrast, undocumented youth got their kidnappinngs outlawed in two short months. Without confronting psychiatry at all, these kids have cut it off at the knees. Parented kids are FAR less likely to get quacked than unparented kids – even if they’re “symptomatic”. I’m immensely proud of our nation’s undocumented immigrant youth, and I urge us all to LEARN from them. If they can secure de facto protection from psychiatry, there’s no reason why we can’t.

  • Thank God you’re free and safe today. What I liked most about this piece was how it underscored the true goal of pro-force psychiatry: creating lifelong “patients”. Most people aren’t aware that a caging is a caging is a caging. When you’re released from a snake pit, you’re debilitated, displaced, and stigmatized, just like a felon who has been released from prison. Pro-force psychiatry would prefer to NEVER free a single detainee, but it can’t do that. So, it elects, instead, to torture and disenfranchise you, as a short-term investment in your long-term “compliance” and misery. People, if you can, RUN from the goon squad.

  • God, that book sounds frightening! While, I’m sure it’s well-researched and well-written, it is also a tale of suicide-by-quack. I got suckered into the #FAKESCIENCE . No doubt, that’s how many of us became “patients”. But, Ms. Slater knows that psychiatry is a death sentence. Though her upbringing had surely hurt her chances of escaping psychiatry, she had amassed enough resources to do just that. As Julie pointed out, she has an education, a career, a home, and a partner. For anyone, those supports are significant. And, compared to most Mad people, she’s immensely privileged. I quit psychiatry with FAR fewer resources than Slater has. Really, her book is a testament to psychiatry’s power to brainwash. Despite everything Slater has achieved, her quacks have convinced her that she’s still unworthy of life. I’m terrified for her and enraged, as always, at psychiatry. Anytime someone scolds me to “stop romanticizing ‘noncompliance’”, I will refer them, to Slater’s book and/or obituary.

  • Brilliant, Eric. Just brilliant. I’ve been saying this for years: Everyone’s life and thoughts have meaning. And there are no “incomprehensible” Mad people. Just a lot of interpersonal laziness among the able-normative members of society. Top notch article, brah!

  • Christ, it’s a miracle that you’re even still alive. And, then you’ve beaten ALL of the odds by pursuing and attaining a productive, healthy, and free life. I sure hope you’re in a position to tell the truth: Munchausens like your mom are lethal and very, VERY sick themselves. They hate their kids, yet are too ashamed and fearful to torture them on their own. So, they use psychiatry as a means of outsourcing the child abuse. Not only is this way easier, it’s also more effective. The law sets a few limits on parents who abuse their children, but virtually none on quacks who abuse children, at the behest of those parents. Right now, the Munchausen/quack duo is FAR above the law. You’re a hero for building justice for others, despite having had none for yourself. I hope you continue to live a happy, safe life.

  • “Recall bias”? Boy, that’s rich! People suffer substantial and enduring “side effects” (i.e. debilitating iatrogenic illness) from psychiatric narcotics. For f*ck’s sake, there’s NOTHING to “recall”. Thanks to the #FAKESCIENCE, you are imprisoned in an ugly, uncomfortable, dangerous body 24/7!

  • Wonderful! People don’t know and/or don’t care about the snowball effect of rejection. You, literally, began a large part of your healing in an instant. And, the interpersonal support you received was pretty basic. Had your surroundings been halfway decent when you were younger, you could have just lived your life, rather than endure years of pain to get there. Congratulations on your new, authentic, autonomous life.

  • What is the point of psychosis? Well, my theory is this: Our world is ruled by a tiny block of people, who dictate a set of norms which “bigly” accommodate their MAMMOTH dysfunctions. You and I are not among those people. And, so we get tortured with psychiatry, unless we get off the grid BEFORE our “leaders” deplete us. Extreme states are really that simple. Bodies MUST NOT withstand any and all social decay. Nor can societies charge into that decay, unobstructed by the people they’ve destroyed. Psychosis is part of the debt we ALL pay to egotism, intolerance, and sloth. Hassling you was a futile attempt to duck that debt. If you won’t solve a problem, nuke the people who call it out. That’s social engineering 101.

  • “. . . and I was researching bipolar treatment facilities instead of hanging out with my family on the beach.”

    That sounds like me on a family vacation in 2001. I was in bed, semi-unconscious from my Zoloft, and not at the theatre watching the Blue Man Group. These quacks WANT us dominated by their lies and poison at all times. There is ZERO foundation to their “science”, which is why the quacks confine your life to “treatment” and “illness”. They can’t afford to let your life expand beyond that vise. For, if it does, you will probably learn how to TRULY feel well again. The real world tends to work that way, as it has VERY little tolerance for parasitic, shyster quacks. More life = less #FAKESCIENCE.

  • Sandra, it’s not self-pity to feel annihilated whenever you’re CENSORED! We all need a voice in the world. Plus, the world SHOULD hear everything you have to say. If Mad people can’t speak, then our lives are the territory of every quack and sanist. So many of us have lost enough already. We must not also lose our very existences.

  • Lord! This is a #FAKESCIENCE nightmare! Anyone who’s consumed this garbage can vouch for its “side effects” of aggression, which is often exacerbated by guilt over feeling so much anger. That seems to be what happened with Mr. Carmichael. Quacks poisoned him with narcotics that were KNOWN to cause homicidal ideation. And they did that without Mr. Carmichael’s knowledge or consent. So, when the shit hit the fan, he blamed himself instead of his quacks – yet another manipulation that was SOLELY a consequence of medical malpractice. Only, this one sealed horrible fates for Mr. Carmichael and his son. Man, I’m incredibly sorry for your loss and I’m thrilled that you’re uncaged and speaking out against psychiatry’s crimes. You’re a good man and you deserve a safe, happy, and loving future. Best of luck to you, sir.

  • Actually, that poison turns you violent through design AND through habit.

    Psychiatric narcotics are loaded with toxic chemicals that suppress the body’s natural response to EVERY feeling, including anger. When the dope wears off, AS ALL DOPE WILL, your body will explode with emotion. That’s what happens whenever you rob a body of what it needs. Rob it of sleep and you get narcolepsy. Rob it of a place to expel waste, and you get incontinence. Rob it of rest, and you collapse. These quacks KNOW they’re disrupting healthy human processes, and they KNOW that disruption is psychiatric torture. It disgusts and infuriates me whenever the media enables their biosiege on Mad people.

    And we weren’t told WHY this guy felt angry. For all we know, he had GOOD reasons for feeling that way. I know I did. Suppressing ALL anger is what quacks strive for. They’re aware that you’ll reject their #FAKESCIENCE, if you ever assert your RIGHT to feel anger and ACT on it. So, they try manipulate you out of the survival-focused instinct to resist injustices in your life. Not surprisingly, that manufactured passivity always backfires. People’s default mode is peace, but they’ll only exist there, quid pro quo. Oppress them in that default mode, and they’ll retaliate. I mean, what are their other options? More abuse or death? No thanks! Treat a person like an object, and you turn them into a weapon. That’s a law of human nature. Flout it at your own risk.

  • Psychiatry is threatened by any ideology that bests its ability to guide people. Because religions are thousands of years old and *PROTECTED BY OUR CONSTITUTION*, they are especially threatening to the quacks. My grandmother was a person of very strong faith, just like you are. No doubt, she would be a target of psychiatry, if she were alive today. Ironically, as much as psychiatry hates religion, it always metes out damning punishments to anyone who defects from society’s mainstream. And some would call that those punishments harsh, by biblical proportions.

  • Sorry for red-pilling, but here it is: If Sera isn’t allowed to effectuate significant, lasting REFORM in psychiatry, then psychiatry cannot be salvaged, and must be ABOLISHED. In my experience, Sera is one of the smartest, most dedicated, most flexible, and most personable Mad activists. Compared to anyone, she’s a stand-up person. Compared to Munchausens and quacks, she’s a saint! It should surprise no one that these complaints were thrown at Sera by people who aren’t Mad. Every. Single. One. And, since these are the very same people who HATE working closely with Mad people, they’re OBLIGATED to step aside and let Sera take charge. These quacks can’t have it both ways. They can’t refuse to serve people, and then undercut the person who will. I realize that’s one of the quack’s schizophrenogenic antics, but it’s intolerable, unprofessional, and catastrophic to Mad people. It MUST stop. If it doesn’t, then folks like Sera need the legal authority to completely break out of the #FAKESCIENCE , and care for the public in their own way. Enough is enough.

  • Unbelievable! Usually, in any circumstance, one honest person is a huge blessing. But, psychiatry casts you as a crank for not toeing the party line about neurotoxins. Of course, the people who matter most – psychiatry’s VICTIMS – know you’re right. Humans were NEVER meant to chemically alter moods, core beliefs, and strategic cognitions. And ANYONE is endangered, when they consume a class of drugs that purport to “program” them. Thank you for your life-saving candor, Dr. Breggin. #justsaynotopsychiatricnarcotics

  • “Pleading for acceptance”? Oh, boy. I agree with your views on detaching from #FAKESCIENCE , but it’s reasonable for Missy/Skylar to seek acceptance from a “profession” that, ostensibly, wants to help her/him. While it’s futile to expect REAL support from #FAKESCIENCE , that expectation is NOT at all “pitiful”. #FAKENEWS informs people’s initial commitment to psychiatry: It is “safe”. It is a carefully and extensively studied field of medicine. It is selfless. It is effective. Most people realize that psychiatry is #FAKESCIENCE *after* it fucks them over. Missy/Skylar is exiting psychiatry the way many of us have – driven out by numerous betrayals of blind trust. She/He is a victim of health care fraud, not a needy tool.

  • You’re right, of course. And that’s, obviously, what should matter most. Sadly, though, it does not. Accountability is a crummy marketing gimmick and it’s, literally, reviled in pathogenic families. I welcomed that message as a reassuring hard-line against childhood-robbing #FAKESCIENCE . But, the public bitterly resents your demanding advice, regardless of its safety and effectiveness. Let’s face it – you’re correct, but still a killjoy. Psychiatry is a handy tool for discarding willful children, and it’s PR is actually turning parents into Munchausens. It won’t be squashed by anything shy of a #FAKESCIENCE revolt.

  • MRS. BATES LIVES!!!! Psychiatry will try and convince you otherwise, but Janet Maile knows better, as do many of you. DO NOT let psychiatry keep you under the yoke of a Munchausen!

  • This man’s story should be posted to the NAMI website, so people could see what a CARING father thinks of #killerquacks . I am so, so sorry for your loss, man. Thank God your daughter had you in her life. Because of you, your daughter’s life wasn’t a total hell.

  • Cool it, would you? There have always been *A FEW* good psychiatrists, even in psychiatry’s lobotomy-and-insulin coma days. For as long as she could, Dr. Wood attempted to reform psychiatry from the inside. Almost NOBODY attempts to do that. Her efforts took a lot of faith, compassion, and courage. She’s EARNED our congratulations and support.

  • I’m suggesting REAL plans and REAL resources – honest information about the MANY limitations and risks of lamestream psychiatry; support for education, employment, and housing; public acceptance of extreme states. Psychiatry is costly and wasteful, no less than it is useless and lethal. Money AND lives would be saved with MUCH less of it or, perhaps, none of it at all.

  • Sexual deprivation is painful, dangerous, and NOT a “less onerous” form of torture. While I was on the psychiatric narcotics, I had suffered with it for years. Inability to climax had made me suicidal, enraged, and physically violent. But, fortunately, those effects weren’t permanent. My libido returned when I quit the narcotics and let myself enjoy it again. Never underestimate the catastrophe of forced impotence.

  • If psychiatry’s end game is to hype its abuse #fakescience as a “privileged risk and controversy”, then, yes, it really DOES need to go. Mad people aren’t a quack’s ladder to the elite. We won’t bear ANY costs of a quack’s “risks”. And psychiatric torture is unquestionably and totally EVIL. To psychiatry, I say NO, NO, NO!

  • Christina and Rudy, you both have my deepest sympathies. What you went through was not even #fakescience. It was simply TORTURE.

    My quacks needed only their prescription pad to perpetrate sexual violence. Their narcotics caused me to suffer numerous debilitating “side effects”, including “sexual dysfunction”. For years, I was poisoned to the point where I couldn’t reach an orgasm. By destroying that function, my quacks had greatly reduced my quality of life. And it took me over a year to build up the courage to ask my quacks for help. When I did, they just laughed in my face and told me to “cope”. Of the MANY, MANY abuses that repelled me from psychiatry, that one is still the hardest one to talk about. Fortunately, though, it DID compel me to decisively bail on psychiatry. And after months of abstinence from the psychiatric narcotics, my sex drive had returned. I am very, VERY glad that I’ve put myself ahead of psychiatry. #MeToo #JustSayNo

  • The “borderline” label is #fakescience , without a doubt. People won’t stay healthy when their relatives/friends/classmates/sweethearts are making them feel totally defective. Like all psychiatric diagnonsense, it’s a way to torture the VICTIMS of abusive relationships. It’s EVIL to make someone feel so worthless. It’s GASLIGHTING to pathologize their strong reactions to that abuse. And it’s brutally controlling to rate a person’s “sanity” by their tolerance for masochistic “inclusion”. But, the quacks won’t let Mad people know any of that. Fragging our perps is an economic, social, and existential threat to them, no matter how “successfully” we do it. By ANY means, – lies, #fakescience, eugenicide – our perps will dodge that threat. Emily, you are NOT a “borderline”. You’re a smart, capable, loving, fun woman. People, DON’T SURRENDER TO THE SANISTS, MUNCHAUSENS, AND QUACKS. You aren’t “borderline”. You’ve just gotten thugged out by the closet whack-jobs in your life. And we NEED to stop taking the fall for them. NEVER accept an label that weakens, isolates, and manipulates you!

  • Kat, you are NOT “needy”. “Love quotas” and “care quotas” are two of psychiatry’s cruelest and most pathogenic games. That quack-pit is loaded with people who’ve been sickened from a lack of human warmth. It’s inexcusable and horrifying to abnormalize their needs for warmth, when you’re aware that they’ve had little, if any, of it in their 20, 30, 40, or 50 years of life. You deserve to be deeply and honorably loved and cared for, and I would do exactly that, if I were your clinician. Tight hugs to you!

  • ”Illification” is exactly right! But, I DON’T think that scam is a runaway train. Truths – pathogenic families cause “mental illness”, ANYBODY can change, and we owe NOTHING to psychiatry – DO set people free. In this country, childhood is legally dominated by families. What we need to do is give people chances for growth from day 1 of adulthood. It’s never too late for a real life.

  • “If today’s your last day, leave the (goal) card blank.”

    That says it all. Release, not captivity, is when your REAL goals – not your “realistic” goals – begin, yet psychiatry didn’t give a fuck about them. Fortunately, it sounds like you have a lot of goals today. Good on you for not letting psychiatry kill them all.

  • Honest and interesting article and comments! But, to me, I think our first step to winning is NOT to get “played”, in the first place. We can’t become psychiatrized, let alone stay psychiatrized, unless we’re willing to seek approval, guidance, permission, and love from our abusers. Somehow, each of us must become staunchly rejecting of our families’ and society’s destrictivity and pathogenesis.

  • Thank you, Ms. Jimenez, for busting a very common, but disingenuous, myth – namely, that of a “voluntary” patient who receives and retains their rights. The pro-force psychiatry crowd warns Mad people to, “Relax, so you won’t get hurt”, so to speak. It claims that we’ll be “treated” well, have more of our rights protected, and “recover” much faster, if we simply “choose” to get “help”. WELL, NONE OF THAT HAPPENS! Mad people face danger in psychiatry, no matter how they enter it. And, Ms. Jimenez had to learn that lesson the hard way, because her quacks wouldn’t tell her what her rights were. This article was informative, yet relatable. You’ll make a fine attorney, Ms. Jimenez.

  • Uh-oh! We have a troll, here! Quacks can ABSOLUTELY cause people to self-censor, and that manipulative gag CAN sicken them!!! Psychiatry KNOWS that self-expression is an escape hatch from its totalitarian #fakescience. It attributes people’s “problems” to their “broken brains”, while claiming that “a good patient is a silent patient”. And psychiatry’s victims buy into that manipulation, due to its covert melding of obedience and health. If that woman had spoken, maybe someone would have heard her and VALUED her words. Then, psychiatry’s curse on her would be broken . . . Now, why do I think you don’t want that?

  • Whatever, rasselas. Madness is a RESPONSE to AND A REBELLION against traumatizing circumstances, which are often caused by evil and pathogenic PEOPLE. That’s the truth, and Matt would still be here, thriving in his life, if his quacks had not brainwashed him out of reality.

  • Damn it, that’s EXACTLY what Michael Cornwall was talking about. Even from a bit of a distance, even after a degree and a job and a new chance to reach out to the world, psychiatry’s noose around his neck had never fully lifted off. Those quacks got what they wanted – now he’ll NEVER enjoy a life away from them. They perpetrated homicide-by-indoctrination. Matt, if you can hear us, your life WAS worth more than your quack’s hate and lies. We’ll always miss you dearly and treasure your razor-sharp beat down of psychiatry!!!!

  • Patrick, I think you’re missing part of the reason why Mad people object to the (over) credentializing of our health supports. Pay-to-play peer work would be hurt many of us, no matter what its context. Even if these “exams” were free and not graded, even if the “hours of intense work” were highly paid, and even if some Mad people “chose” to standardize these hoops, they would still face a backlash from many Mad people. Most of what’s taught about Madness is #fakescholarship and #fakescience. That BS “education” will certainly attempt to place harmful on restrictions the scope of peer work. You call it a “supplement” to “medical care”, but many people can and DO need peers to *replace* clinicians. Some of them will die, if their peers are barred from working in the health care system. And it’s quite ominous to “extreme vet” people who want to and *should be* working ENTIRELY for – and under the direction of – the people they’re caring for. I’m fine with a “qualifying” process to become a peer worker, but that process must be set up by the service users – their REAL employers.

  • An abusive childhood followed by an abusive marriage followed by an abusive psychiatric system, which was only an offshoot of the abusive family. Nobody, I repeat NOBODY, could live under that and remain healthy. POWs get treated better than Frances did. Like most of us on MIA, she was deprived of the most basic tools for survival – love, freedom, honesty, SLEEP – and then pathologized when she could not function without them. Had Frances been left to her own devices as a young woman, she would not have faced ANY trouble that matched or exceeded the hell of psychiatry. Frances, this was an excellent article. YOU are clever too, and I’m thrilled that you’re loosening psychiatry’s death-grip on your life.

  • This article was heartbreaking and horrifying. I had no idea that Carter went through so much trauma and psychiatric assault. Not surprisingly, the mainstream #fakenews had never published any articles like this one. In light of these new facts, I think Carter’s “verdict” was a miscarriage of justice. It will protect society as a whole, since future cases will use this ruling as a guide for sentencing REAL perps. But, it wasn’t fair to Ms. Carter. Her quacks are the people who should have been caged for several decades. Thanks for writing the ONE honest article about Michelle Carter, Dr. Breggin.

  • “. . . we didn’t have what he needed to live?” BULLSHIT! We didn’t GIVE him what he needed to live. When I “looked around” at his life, I saw a father who said he “couldn’t live as a ‘diminished’ person”, a YouTube channel full of voyeuristic sycophants, and a pile of toxic psychiatric narcotics. There was NO reason why we had to turn that into his life. Apparently, his distress began during childhood. His abusive parents got him labeled as OCD, and that started him down the path to psychiatric Armageddon. More psychiatry made his life worse, not better. Suicide was NOT his “choice” and it was NOT inevitable. His executioners were the only people who got what they wanted from this.

  • Lately I’ve felt distracted, though, I think I could more accurately be described as divided. Now, I’m able to think and move through my competing desires and goals, and the liberation that affords me is life-saving to me, in every moment of every day. The guidance of personal voices is a threat to psychiatry and to mainstream life, in general. As I labor to care for the balance which sustains my well-being, I am dreadfully aware of society’s depth of loathing for my independence. Thank you, Eric, for sharing the truths that many of us live through and live by, in resolve and compulsory silence.

  • Good for you. Mainstream psychiatry REALLY doesn’t want anyone to feel better. Quacks dare to look at your progress and equate your “non-compliance” with your “illness”. THAT’S sick! Under ANY circumstances, it is grossly entitled and possessive to demand eternal and non-negotiable control over someone else’s life. But, it’s a far increased violation, when it’s perpetrated by a professional on a person who came to them for help. Enjoy your liberation from mainstream psychiatry, and always remember why you had to reject it.

  • God! More of Torrey’s premature ejaculations over pro-force psychiatry!!! McCance-Katz WILL NOT singlehandedly force-psychiatrize us! For one thing, her sanist agendas are well-known and much-hated in the survivor community. Psychiatry oppresses best on uninformed targets, which means that McCance-Katz, if appointed, would face immediate and massive obstruction at every turn – just like Cheeto. Also, survivors like Paolo have long and close relationships with the people they support. Those people won’t tolerate McCance-Katz, in large part, because of her sick plot to sever their deepest human connections. And, finally, a majority of survivors have led lives that were once as turbulent as Paolo’s was. Only a whack-job like McCance-Katz could expect to gut their hard-earned security, which took them YEARS to build. Of course, we need to call our members of congress, and protest her appointment. But, regardless of who becomes the new Asst. Sec., we need to keep faith in our ability to protect our rights. Cheeto or no Cheeto, our liberty is ours for life.

  • Psychiatric patients die 25 years before everyone else. 25 years before Mad people who reject psychiatry. Let that number sink in. Does it sound stupid to you? Because it doesn’t sound stupid to me! – 25 years is not a mistake or an accident. Remember, psychiatry doesn’t “save” any lives because Madness is NOT an “illness”, and certainly not any condition that endangers one’s life. Nope. The quacks are robbing us of that much time, because it’s the maximum that they can rob, without outing themselves as cold-blooded killers. Psychiatry is SINISTER, not stupid.

  • Jesus! That asshole Jeffrey Lieberman gets to run amok on Mad lives, yet Sara gets railroaded out of Mad health care? Maybe psychiatry WOULDN’T have an anti-movement, if it wasn’t so hostile and destructive to its lunatic fringe. A clinician like Sara would have been a godsend in my darkest hours. It’s almost unbelievable that psychiatry has “screened out” a person who would NEVER ruin Mad lives. Almost.

  • Why is policy not changing? Psychiatry’s goal is to annihilate its victims. It’s narcotics are a strong first step toward that goal. But, healthy bodies DO fight off psychiatry’s poison. And, if they’re young, those bodies can fight for years – a bad situation for psychiatry. The more time it takes for psychiatry to annihilate, the less likely it ever will. It’s a mammoth job to break the rhythms of nature. Whoever wants a shot at it must go full-throttle.

  • This bot is the devil. But the good news is that ALL of its failures can be forever branded onto its brand, an unavoidable consequence of its arrogant move into the self-service health care sector. Had Freed hawked this piece of shit in a PRIVATE venue, – like a pharmacy, gym, or clinic – he could have easily concealed its destruction. But, no. Instead, he just HAD to maximize his profits, and turn his little brainchild loose on a desperate and unsuspecting population. This article may be the first one to condemn Freed’s exploitation of Mad people and underprivileged people, in general. For all of our sakes, I sure hope it won’t be the last. Kudos, Sera, for holding Danny Freed accountable.

  • Praise Jesus for this!!! We need our own space in higher education SOOOO much! Deinstitutionalization relied heavily upon the scholars who outed psychiatry’s human rights violations and pseudoscience. And to revolutionize or abolish psychiatry (either outcome is fine with me), we’ll need more than a Mad Renaissance every few decades. So many of our problems would be resolved with our own degree programs and, eventually, a Mad health licensure. Just think – with those tools, we’d be able to assert ourselves with the public and NOT become victimized by censorship or “anti-science” stereotypes. No more being accused of closet Scientology. No more marginalization of our work. No more “studies” that don’t examine our needs and our lives. No more Mad people being railroaded into psychiatry’s medical model, simply because they aren’t exposed to any of its SAFE AND EFFECTIVE alternatives. Thank you, Dr. Burstow, for bringing us closer to a safer and fairer society!

  • There’s no need to defend yourself. I wasn’t trying to insult you. Why, I can’t remember, but I was writing about your story from the perspective of the quacks. Believe me, that’s odd for me. I can’t recall another time when I’ve done that. But, I did – and still do – feel respect for your humanity and empowered by the way you recognized how to start TRULY living. You are absolutely right – a turtle would have been cheaper AND safer than psychiatry.

  • The arrogance of Lieberman & company is enough to make me pull my hair out! (And, as an EX-patient of psychiatry, I can do that and NOT get caged or raped with a needle!) Their latest self-regulatory PR stunt further solidifies the public’s negative perceptions of psychiatry, ALL of which are well-founded and GENUINELY researched. No other profession can LITERALLY shove its own version of its “success” down the throats of those people who, supposedly, “need” it. Of course, one reason they can do that is because psychiatry’s targets are, invariably, the “deplorables” of society. But, those people who aren’t “deplorables” can and do resent “professionals” who flaunt their offensive entitlement to “work” under the LOWEST possible bar of accountability. As a result, the majority of people STILL harbor a disrespect and distrust of psychiatry, despite its excellence at preserving their able-normative privilege. Call it “perp guilt” or “rage against the elites”, but mass “acceptance” of psychiatry IS NOT PROTECTING IT FROM ITS VICTIMS. The complicit public IS biting the hand that feeds it, in tiny, soft, steady nibbles.

  • This “judge” is selfish and spineless! Physical mobility and bodily autonomy are THE two most vital human rights, after the right to life itself. It’s a brutal abuse of power to gut the rights of any law-abiding citizen. But, it’s beyond the pale to gut such important rights from a citizen who *thought* they’d be secure, if they *VOLUNTEERED* for treatment. Ironically, though, it’s this very fear-mongering which might just be your exit from the psychiatric terrorism at U of M.

    In Michigan, the pro-force psychiatry laws were recently made MUCH more draconian. Before this year, a “targeted individual” had to have “anosognosia” (more on this, in a bit) AND a proven history of “harm to one’s self or others”. But as of February 2017, Mad people “qualify” for forced-drugging, if a quack supposes that they “could” harm themselves or someone else in the near future – a standard that applies to virtually anybody. Since neither you nor your petitioners can prove a negative, your petitioners are going to hit heavy on your “anosognosia” and the scary stereotypes of “noncompliant” Mad people. Likewise, your defense will also take a two-pronged approach: discrediting the quack’s “science” and fear-mongering their fear-mongering.

  • “The problem here is that it seems so clean, so logical. Just as suicide is not pretty, it cannot be reduced down to a series of answers to the question of why. Nor can it be explained by a linear combination of solely external factors. Life is not binary and it is full of uncertainties and adversities.”

    In those four sentences, you’ve presented the community ethos that killed “Hannah” and thousands of other real people of all ages, every single year. Spotting limits on the validity of the esoteric is one of your jobs as a clinician. Today, you have miserably failed at it. Many things in life really ARE very, very simple. If it were extraordinarily complicated to merely LIVE, our species would have killed itself off before now. When you cut through all the PC bullshit, the truth is STILL there on Netflix for all to see: Hannah was killed by the power players in her life (boys, parents, quacks, bullies) who had sapped her will to live and, thus, CHOSE to become her executioners.

    Suicide is not supposed to be “pretty”. That’s the one moment in life, when YOU ARE DONE WITH TRYING TO APPEASE THE PEOPLE WHOSE APPRAISAL OF BEAUTY IS DESTRUCTIVE AND LETHAL. In “Hannah’s” case, suicide met only two vital needs: 1) to leave a world that would never again be humane and 2) to bring her perpetrators to justice. On top of attracting a MASSIVE mainstream audience, 13RW has now become a part of both the Mad Rights canon and the Women’s Rights canon. “Hannah’s” seized her vindication in death, but she’s got it now, and it’s here to stay. So, needless to say, her suicide was a monumental success. Most of us will never be that fortunate.

    Until now, suicide was accompanied by the HIGH likelihood that one’s story would be buried along with them. Their notes would be thrown out, and their last conversations would be concealed by their executioners, soon to forgotten. But, from here on out, the dead will speak among us for all time – in sound and living color, no matter where in the world we go. In times past, we couldn’t know why people committed suicide BECAUSE THEIR EXECUTIONERS GAGGED THEM FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE. By insisting that “Hannah’s” suicide is incomprehensible, you’re clinging “bitterly” to either one of two fallacies: 1) audio tapes are “inaccessible” (To who? Cave dwellers?) or 2) “Hannah” was “too sick” to understand and condemn the people who slaughtered her. So, which is it? I’m guessing #2.

  • These quacks just invented a “disorder”, because that means of punishing and controlling a child serves two important needs for their abusers: 1) it guarantees an income for useless adults who would otherwise be pimping and pushing 2) it shields evil parents from being held to account for hating and severely torturing their children. The fact is that psychiatry is the cheapest, fastest, and least disruptive way to preserve the social pecking order in society. Too many people would rather rob (Psychiatry usually cuts people’s earning power by almost 100%.), maim (After years of abstinence from the psychiatric narcotics, I STILL do not have complete function of all my organs.) and kill (Narcoticized people die 25 years earlier than the general population.) than to protect children, at the expense of their parents, if need be.

  • Good God! These clowns conned Vlado out of his time and his money. And, at the end of this fraudulent malpractice, they did no more than he could have done, had he been permitted to LEGALLY “self-medicate”. Folks in the Mad community are often forced to drug themselves to the limit, in order to secure consistent sleep and protect themselves from being court-ordered to “treatment” (i.e. caged, brainwashed, poisoned, and raped with needles and/or electrodes). For instance, Linda Gray Sexton wrote about her experience with “calculated narcoticizing” in her memoir, Half in Love. Compared to a healing bath, this self-care option is pathogenic and barbarous. And over the long-term, what we need to do is criminalize EVERY Mad health care protocol that isn’t 100% safe. But, until then, Vlado has set an excellent example of how to psychiatrize, while assuming the least possible risk of harm. Way to go, Vlado!

  • You’re right, David Oaks. And the injustice has already begun. The mainstream “media” is pushing HARD for McCance Katz’s appointment to the new Assistant Secretary position. Mad people have written comments to those articles, which oppose it. All of those comments were deleted within 18 hours of being posted on those webpages. Censorship antics are a pro-force psychiatry mainstay. We defied those antics during the long fight to stop the “Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act”. Now, we need to defy them again. Our freedom still depends on our voice. TGMIA. It’s, literally, a lifesaver to have at least one forum that won’t delete the victims of pro-force psychiatry.

  • Terrific article, Sera. But, the elephant in the room is this: whatever MHA’s past might have been, it is now “led” by the alt-light sect of the NAMI and TAC crowd. These Mommy and Daddy Munchausens DO NOT want their sons and daughters to enjoy ANY real relationships. Despite these freaks’ hysterical and ludicrous claims, even *they* do not believe that “mental illness” is “just like diabetes or dementia”. If they did, then they’d have NO FEAR of letting their Mad family members ditch the quacks, connect with loving people, and, in that way, begin to focus on their own dreams and goals. Honestly, psychiatry would not be able to pathologize Mad people WITHOUT keeping us isolated, shunned, endangered, and completely demoralized. We could be more openly Mad than we’ve ever been, and STILL retain our liberties, so long as large numbers of us were not expendable. Good jobs, friends, and partners are the three fastest pathways out of that state, so it’s no surprise to see peers “credentialized” out of a paraprofessional system that provided all three. It’s fine to weep, but we must also fight. Mad people’s “treatment compliance” CANNOT be secured by impoverishing us or by estranging us from our closest allies.

  • Fantastic article, Dr. Cornwall. Just one minor problem – compassion, loyalty and hope all require COURAGE. That cuts out most of society and almost all of psychiatry. The quack-fest of psychiatry thrives because it makes us TERRIFIED to live in a society where people are valued (or devalued), based on their ability to feel and share pain, rather than on their power to repress or inflict pain. As the child of a veteran, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this article. Really, all of your articles have filled me with a wonder and relief. It’s a real comfort to know that military service and extreme states can end with a long, deeply meaningful, and highly productive career in the helping profession. After all that you’ve been through, living a full, calm life makes you a champion. Good for you!

  • You’re right. Misery not only loved company, it NEEDED company. Psychiatry was killing her, and sister think, by then, she knew it. I guess she didn’t want to die alone, and she was willing to kill another person, in order to avoid that dismal fate. Humanity dies every day, at the hands of mainstream and pro-force psychiatry.

  • Jesus, I think we’re sort of missing the boat, here. To me, the situation is this: Mad people are the stop-gap on our society’s exalted, but egregious “values”: conditional love, “vulture” capitalism, eugenics, human expendability, and die-hard uniformity/conformity. The current social order leaves NO room for ANYONE to have a halfway decent life, outside of those strictures. According to psychiatry, it must cram Mad people into “treatment”, so that it may “provide” us with “safe” and reasonably “happy” lives. But they know, before we do, that society’s status hierarchy is very much jeopardized by safe and happy Mad people. In that life, we’ll reflect on our psychiatrization, only to resist and, ultimately, reject it. (What TAC/NAMI so brazenly refer to as, “I’m feeling well, so I don’t need medication anymore.”.) Most of us know someone who feels they’ve been a “success story” of mainstream psychiatry (or some component of it). And, yet, even those people will easily and openly credit their success to numerous other lifestyle factors – a good marriage, a job they enjoy, abstinence from the most torturous forms of “treatment”, etc. That’s why psychiatry quickly shuts its patients up, soon after it requests their “perspective” on their “treatment”. Even if that “treatment” spanned years or decades, psychiatry still evades an extended and *public* dialogue with its current or former patients. Healthy(ier) patients are inevitably the ones whose lives weren’t “consumed” by psychiatry, and that deplorable “basket” of pseudoscience WILL NOT quit stealing the credit for those health gains. Psychiatry MUST minimize the serious risk of being outed as a fraud of medicine, and low patient improvement rates are its best chance possible for “making it quack”. Therefore, the majority of Mad people must be miserable and very, very sick, for as long as they’re “compliant” or noncompliant with psychiatric “treatment”. Quacks much prefer the Amy Bleuels to the Ronda Richardsons. Apart from rigidly segregating the Mad “throwaways”, there is nothing else to be “gained” by psychologically or physically coercing us into psychiatric “treatment”.

  • Heh! I got news for those perps who nearly sucked the life out of Chris – as time goes on, he’s going to get stronger, and louder, and happier, and better organized. He WILL be a threat to you! You’ve robbed him of twenty years, but he still has at least twenty more to invest in your demise and his own best life. LIVE IN FEAR, QUACKS!!!!

  • Thank God your family stepped off the torture train. What a lucky relief for you! Most schizophrenogenic families won’t ever change. And, I do realize that families get gamed by the quacks, as well. Mine sure did. When psychiatry is the only game in town, folks are usually forced to play AND forced to pay.

  • Ruder than robbing your relative of safety, dignity, and their college graduation? I think not. That grotesque trifecta is NOT deserving of polite disagreement. My hat goes off to Emily. Unless that family made and sustained some MAJOR improvements, there’s no way I’d have given it a second chance.

  • So, Emily’s kidnapped, caged, and chemically raped the night before she’s set to be honored by her university. How convenient. I smell a schizophrenogenic family, here. The idea of a Mad winner was intolerable to at least one principal member of the Cutler family. Their frantic act of cruelty was SO obviously aimed at blocking Emily’s transcendence from the “patient” role. And it’s absolutely pathogenic to sink to that cruelty in such an obvious manner. Rolling that shit out the night before Emily’s college graduation?!? Give me a fucking break!

    I’m glad to hear that Emily has more allies in her family, now. She’s going to need them, because she’s correct – coming out causes negative outcomes 100% of the time. While it’s difficult to deal with those consequences at all, it’s virtually impossible to deal with hem alone. Thank God, Emily doesn’t have to do that.

  • I know this isn’t on-topic, but I have to say, FAIL to whatever school railroaded you out. You write and reason remarkably well. If you weren’t Mad, those nutty professors would be tripping over themselves to grab the credit for your brilliance. That degree mill definitely gets an F for human rights and academic freedom. Damn!

  • There is ALWAYS a way out of psychiatry. There is ALWAYS a way out, no matter what you’ve been through, what you’ve done, or what your quacks tell you to expect for your future. Jenna, if you ever get a chance to do so, I strongly suggest that you speak to some legislators about your transition into and out of psychiatry. You write so clearly and passionately, which is partly why your story is so enlightening to read. And, I imagine that it would seem even more enlightening to our nation’s leaders, nearly all of whom have never seen the wreckage of psychiatry’s false promises of benevolent, “scientific”, and effective care. Bless you, Jenna, for never giving up on yourself and for devoting part of your new life to the well-being of Mad people. Enjoy your new lease on life!

  • Hehe, you know, Danny, you’re taking it easy on NAMI. The gorgons who founded that hate group knew EXACTLY what they were doing. Their goal was to create a psychiatric system that was powerful enough to last forever, so that their “loved ones” would be imprisoned in it for life, and never, EVER recover. I’m sure you’ve noticed that NAMI, Active Minds, TAC, etc. are all focused on *treatment compliance*, rather than outcomes. As you’ve written, the medical model of psychiatry produces shit outcomes, whereas the social model of psychiatry is a big (and “bigly” ignored) success. And advocates of that pseudoscience WILL NOT recognize the benefits of quitting or limiting mainstream psychiatric “treatment”. They know that if they do, they’ll soon be forced to field the next logical question: “Could a good environment prevent “mental illness”, if a bad environment caused “mental illness”?”. So, we’ll likely fail at most of our efforts to change the quacks and the schizophrenogenic families. Whether any of those “advocates” change, your article is valuable. It’s preserving Mad people’s receptivity to GENUINE support and REPUTABLE clinicians. Thank you so much for writing it!

  • This article was excellent! It’s themes – iatrogenic psychiatric illness, the family dynamics etiology of psychiatric “illness”, and the self-determination of Mad people – are the platforms of this website. Kudos to you for sharing your uplifting story with Mad In America. I, too, was a “slow learner” when it came to psychiatry. By giving that “profession” countless “second chances”, I nearly “compromised” myself to death. To this day, I don’t know why I thought I owed psychiatry so much, when it took nearly everything I needed and loved. Ms. Garson, you are totally right to impose some limits on psychiatry’s demands for respect and authority.

  • Psychiatrists can’t control their patient’s lives, if their dogmas are forced to compete with their patient’s belief systems. Be they religious, spiritual, moral, or what have you, they MUST brainwash you out of them, if their goal is to trap you in psychiatry for life.

  • Sounds like that facility was VERY aware that it was responsible for your coworker’s suicide. And they knew nobody else would care about that woman except you. I guess they were trying to bump you off too, so that all the evidence of their lethal abusiveness would be buried. You did everything society tells disabled people to do: you got married, you sought the care of “medical professionals”, you went to school, you worked, you obeyed the law. Those duties took far more out of you than they take out of the less-burdened majority of people. Yet, you did them anyway. In return, you WERE entitled to live in total dignity. Thank God you’re finally MUCH closer to that now. Bless you, Katie.

  • Damn, this was an eye-opener. It’s been one of my life’s dreams to infiltrate the psychiatric system, and then join my fellow Madfolk in the joyful labor of burning it down. But, now I’m having second thoughts. Or, at the very least, I’m rethinking how I’ll plan for that goal. The way psychiatry treated you – as a “patient”, then as a “consumer”, and, finally, as a “prosumer” – was disgusting. But, one of the “problems” seemed to be that you weren’t given sufficient information and resources to pick ANY of the locks of psychiatry’s labyrinthine gatekeeping jungle. I’m sure it means very little now, but psychiatry might not have “consumed” you, if you A) had not been alone as a “prosumer”, save for a few “prosumers” that were hired SOLELY to burnout and, thus, promote future policies of job discrimination B) had access to an income outside of the psychiatric system or C) had a mentor who advised you not to “come out” as Mad until AFTER you’ve toppled enough quacks. This was a true story of EPIC institutional discrimination, in the very industry that holds a LITERAL death-grip on the power to “help” Mad people. I hope it’s widely read and taken VERY seriously as a compelling example of why we need to de-guild or abolish psychiatry. Obviously, there are high-level, seasoned clinicians who would NEVER have mistreated Katie or any other Mad people. But, there clearly aren’t enough of them to stop psychiatry’s wide-scale destruction of “prosumer’s” personal and professional lives. Perhaps both Mad *and* able-normative clinicians would thrive and produce in a psychiatric system that was stripped of ALL its guild-perks.

  • With the character of “Chloe”, “The Fosters” crossed the not-so-fine-line between fiction and lies. Many of us on MIA have REAL firsthand experience with the plot-lines that are constantly being dumped on her and “The Foster’s” other Mad characters. Basically, what’s happening is that “Rita” is making “Chloe” “sick”. For years, “Rita” alternated between emotionally neglecting and completely neglecting her daughter. That was a baby-step into neglecting her daughter completely, and occasionally erupting in outbursts of physical violence against her (but only when she “has it coming”). As if ANYTHING could rationalize this pathogenesis, “The Fosters” chose to write it all off as the inevitable consequence of “Chloe’s” refusal to get “treatment”. Just like in real life, the identified patient is given only one “option” for care and human contact – an abomination of “medicine” and “science” that will forever stop them from becoming honest, autonomous, loved, healthy, and understood human beings. And even that “option” isn’t a priority for “Rita” until AFTER “Chloe” grovels for her help, when she finally makes a “serious” suicide attempt. My guess is that “Rita’s” and “Chloe’s” relationship will continue to mirror the relationship between Rosie and Chelsea, their real-life counterparts. If Rosie can’t control Chelsea and nobody commits to reparenting her, we’ll see her pseudo-fictional alter, “Chloe”, march arrogantly to either death or suicide. But since we haven’t heard much out of Chelsea lately, I suspect that Rosie has her trapped in amber somewhere, and “The Fosters” will script a TAC-approved “recovery” for “Chloe”. Stay tuned!

  • Yeah. The narcotics are toxic. That message can’t be said often enough, and people will HEAR IT when a doctor says it. You’re right, though, when say call BS on “responding inappropriately to trauma”. We don’t call people “inappropriate” when physical assault breaks their bones. So, why should we call people “inappropriate” when a psychological, assault breaks their desire or ability to live in a toxic “consensus reality”? Looks like this piece needs some heavy-duty editing! But, otherwise, it’s right-on.

  • “There is nothing governmental agencies have to contribute to the resolution of people’s personal or emotional issues.”

    Apart from funding for our EXITS from psychiatry – housing, home health care, education, etc., you’re absolutely right.

  • That hellhole wants to keep their *prisoners* sick. In the 20th century, the quacks could keep you locked up, even if your “illness” was virtually gone. Now, they can’t do that, so they have to make you sicker than you’d ever have been as a free human being. Then, the judge has “no choice” but to cage you forever. This isn’t medicine. It’s psychiatric terrorism. Git-mo is about the only place worse than that gulag.

  • Well, thanks a lot psychiatry! You’ve just burned out another one of your VERY FEW winners. Dr. Wood, 35 years is a long time to spend on a population that’s being brutalized and underserved by the very colleagues you’ve needed and trusted. Enjoy your ascent from the cuckoo’s nest, and THANK YOU FOR BEING ONE OF THE GOOD GUYS!

  • Fran, had I not been so terrified of forced-psychiatry, I would have done exactly what you did. Every psychiatrist I’ve ever had has been as dangerous as any drug dealer. Your story is, yet, more proof that “out-of-control, ‘mentally ill'” are created by psychiatry. Here, psychiatry did its damage by neglecting your needs and then saddling you with a MASSIVE amount of self-blame for the inevitable consequences of their neglect. Maybe you’ve heard this already, but I’m going to say it again: You are NOT responsible for the sanism of your friends and loved ones, and YOU’VE DONE NOTHING TO DESERVE THE CRUELTY OF PRO-FORCE PSYCHIATRY. Basically, Mad people have to hibernate when they’re angry and using alcohol, food, etc. to cope with the psyche-shattering problems that get exacerbated by psychiatry and sanism. That is a self-defense strategy which should be taught to EVERYONE, so we’re all equipped to use it, in the event of our Madness. If psychiatry did nothing else, it should have, at least, done that. But, psychiatry doesn’t want to shore up anybody’s “safe spaces”. This pit of pseudoscience would empty out mighty quick, if it COULDN’T impose Draconian punishments on people who’ve exhibited “difficult” behaviors.

  • I like how you pointed out that psychiatric survivors are often pressured to say something positive about psychiatry whenever we talk about how it brutalized us. Once we’re unchained from the hospital bed, we’re chained once more by the obligation to “bright-side” our psychiatric torture. When psychiatrists can no longer tell us that we’re “wrong” (forgetful, ignorant, “delusional”, fill in the speech-gag) to oppose their “work”, they try to shut down the psychiatric torture conversation by guilt-tripping us into inventing some good PR about psychiatry. But I’m done with chains of all kinds. Psychiatry is getting NO MORE OF MY TIME and NO MORE CONTROL over my perception of the realities I must live with. Ms. Nesset, you’ve reaffirmed my conviction to take MYSELF as seriously as I had once taken psychiatry. Thank you! This was an early Christmas present!

  • It’s rare for Mad people to have both the opportunity and the confidence to say PUBLICLY that they’ve recovered, largely because they have worked incredibly, incredibly hard. Caleb, your future is bright and secure, so long as you hold fast to your “insight” into your vast contributions to your health and professional successes. Don’t let anybody try to fool you into thinking that you have an “incurable, lifelong brain disease” that may only be in “remission” for no apparent reason.

  • One less person trapped in the psychiatric system . . .and one more crack in psychiatry’s glass ceiling. Thank God Ms. Kettler got out of psychiatry before it damaged her life over the long-term. I only wish I had the skill to hack into the APA’s and NAMI’s websites and post this article on all of those sites’ webpages! LOL! Moni’s arricle is just that good!!! By explaining how excessive stress can bust the psyches of even the most capable people, it PROVES that Madness is socially created. Bless you for sharing your story with us, Moni.

  • And this triumph of healing and humanity is denigrated as “new-agey” “pop psychology” by the cold and toxic mainstream psychiatric system. Mr. Cornwall, thanks for working to provide your clients with the care that WE ALL desperately need, yet aren’t allowed to speak about, ask for, or obtain.

  • My father felt the same way about psychiatric drugs for children — or anyone else. When the quacks approached him with their pharmaceutical “solution” to my “behavior problems”, his three word response to them was “NEVER, NEVER, NEVER”. But, then he died and I got drugged. I can only wonder about how much more I’d have in life today, had I NEVER started taking psychiatric drugs. Mr. Guttman, you’ve saved your daughter’s future and, possibly, her life. You are her hero, whether your family admits it or not.

  • Mr. Whitaker, you’ve saved my life and the lives of millions of other Mad people with your accessible, reliable, and empathic writing. These quacks are just envious because you’re talented, you’ve enjoyed a long and prestigious career, and you’re SO much beloved by the public. DON’T BELIEVE THEIR LIES ABOUT YOU!

  • To PsychiatricHydra:

    Hey, I agree that this article doesn’t really take a hard-line against psychiatry. But, nutrition-based remedies for Madness are STILL a big improvement from the torturous and iatrogenic pseudoscience that currently passes for “psychiatric treatment”. Give Dr. Brogan a break!

  • I truly believe that what’s left of the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act WILL be defeated. While there IS an accurate and widespread public perception of psychiatry as abusive, mercenary, inept, and NOT SCIENTIFIC in the slightest, the proponents and sponsors of the HFMHCA have two other insurmountable obstacles as well – 1) the MASSIVE rejection of this bill from Mad people and various other groups and 2) the PR liabilities they’ve shouldered from their foolish choice to recruit the “families of the ‘mentally ill'” as this bill’s foot-soldiers. Rep. Tim Murphy has MAJORLY underestimated how vigorously Mad people would fight his bill and how long we would invest ourselves and our resources into defeating it. In the comments sections of every newspaper article I’ve read that had promoted the HFMHCA, there were ALWAYS at least two or three Mad people who staunchly rejected this bill AND psychiatry. Nor did they pussy-foot around their “threats” to defend their 4th, 13th, and 2nd Amendment rights. Ditto (minus the “threats”) for TV and radio shows where viewers/listeners could call in to discuss the HFMHCA. Now, Mad resistance to this bill would certainly have been enough to sink the HFMHCA singlehandedly, but our family members’ self-interested and sensationalized support for this bill was a critical component of the success we’ve had in watering-down, delaying, and – I hope – crushing the HFMHCA. Mad people’s family members had agitated for this bill’s passage with the ONLY interpersonal skills they’re capable of using – fear-mongering, lies, doomsaying, and guilt. And unlike other grassroots public health campaigns, where entire families would “stand up and be counted”, the family members of Mad people have almost always campaigned for the HFMHCA *without* US – the family members whose “rights” they were, supposedly, trying to secure. In numerous instances, Mad people’s family members just flat-out refuse to share their media spots with Mad people. But on the RARE occasions when they DO, they’ll fight bitterly with them, while SIMULTANEOUSLY insisting that their campaigning for the HFMHCA is the best way – if not the only way – for “family members” to get their Mad “loved ones” the “care” they “need”. Years of these (the HFMHCA has been kicked around Congress for nearly four years) system-gaming shenanigans have provided the public a fresh and much-needed reminder of how pathologically selfish, manipulative, and unloving the families of Mad people can often be. The HFMHCA’s NAMI-mommy army was finally humbled for good in March, when #ManInTree went viral. Though it’s still too early to celebrate the HFMHCA’s annihilation, I do feel cautiously hopeful that we’ll witness that outcome within the next several weeks, and AMAZINGLY proud of myself and everyone else who has so worked to hard to stop this bill from becoming law. Thank you, Dr. Hickey, for keeping the pressure on Mad people to see the defeat of this bill through to the very end.

  • To “givemeyourking”:

    Drug withdrawal caused this man’s violence. Not drug non-compliance. People routinely commit crimes when they’re quitting crack or heroin. Nobody ever claims that those folks should avoid becoming “violent” by staying on their “street drugs”. Mr. Bertino was in the exact same circumstance as millions of other people who never get railroaded into psychiatry. What distinguishes him from his free contemporaries are the type of drugs he was hooked on and the type of predators who got him hooked. “Junk” versus scripts and “docs” versus “dealers”. Same shit, different labels. That’s all.

  • Outrageous! I’ll tell you what, Washington State, since money is the only reason you’re locking Mr. Bertino up, why not make a trade? Round up all the quacks that poisoned Mr. Bertino during his formative years, pump them full of their own “medicine”, and then, RIGHTFULLY, call *that* justice. You are locking up a SANE man whose “insanity” and “heinous crimes” were BOTH iatrogenic. THAT IS ILLEGAL! Google “Corey Baadsgaard” to read about another person who “offended” under the influence of psychiatric narcotics.

    Mr. Bertino, stay true to yourself. You are NOT a monster, a meme for pro-force psychiatry fanatics, or a criminal. You are an honest, brave, and self-responsible man. Not only that, but psychiatry’s victimization of you (It HAS battered, cruelly and unusually punished you, wrongfully imprisioned you, and defrauded you.) has FAR outweighed the consequences of your psych-drug-fueled “crimes”.

    Mad in America, please do ALL that you can to release Mr. Bertino from his psychiatric bondage. I, for one, will do anything I can to aid your efforts to help set him free. Thank you SO MUCH for providing Mr. Bertino a open and friendly place to tell his story. The only thing I ask is that you delete this man’s personally identifying information. Mad in America’s series of first-person accounts by NGRI inmates is revolutionizing news, science, and criminal justice. This website is on a hot-run to its first Pulitzer and, eventually, millions of people will read these articles. But before then, these inmate’s captor-quacks might just kill them off to try and stop their inevitable outing. These inmates’ lives are resting in the hands of this website’s very talented editors. You MUST protect them.

  • Congratulations to you, Naas! I KNOW how much effort, time, risk, and “failure” it takes to quit psychiatric drugs. It’s not only a strenuous physical journey, it’s an uphill battle emotionally as well. I’ve got nine years “clean” this September. And, even at my most miserable, I do feel SIGNIFICANTLY better off the drugs than I did on them. The achievements in life that I’m most proud of are all the simple human growth activities which I, like most people, had taken always for granted. My comfortable, stable body is an even greater source of joy because I KNOW that I’m here and strong today in spite of EVERY POSSIBLE OBSTACLE. I too had no clinical support during my amateur cessation from psychiatric narcotics. But thanks to my family, who didn’t want me jacked up on poison either, I managed to quit it all and reverse much of the damage it directly and indirectly caused. Speaking as someone who’s a bit farther down the drug-free road, Nass, trust me, YOU WILL NEVER, EVER REGRET A LIFE WITHOUT CHEMICAL TOXICITY.

  • I am so inspired by the “Black Lives Matter” movement. During all of the twentieth century, even the most idealistic people were convinced that movements for social change could never be centered around “vague desires” like “mattering”. But BLM has proven that wrong! And Mr. Hall is right – it IS making a lot of Mad people defy the “impossibility” of unloading our injustices and encumbrances (forced-treatment, drugs, the pathologization of our extreme states, the credibility of our pathogenic families, anti-Mad fear mongering — “The Desperate and the Dead”, anyone?). Just look at what we’re achieving with our efforts to defeat the “Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act”. I’ll bet Rep. Tim Murphy never thought he’d STILL be failing at that awful bill after three long years. Thank you, Mr. Hall, for reminding us how powerful we can be when we view ourselves and treat each other as citizens of the world.

  • Your welcome. And I didn’t mean to say that *you* were shaming him. Right now, one of his big problems seems to be the thousands of internet trolls who are shaming him by watching and commenting to his unflattering videos. They’re sucking him into their craze for sleaze “news” and he’s become so humiliated and dejected by them, that he’s lumping all of his critics into one over-inclusive category of “enemies”. The majority of unwarranted criticisms of him are draining all of the energy he needs for addressing the criticisms of his behavior which DO merit his attention. What to do, what to do.

  • What a powerful and relevant article! I love how MIA stays on top of what’s “now”. Mr. Campbell, I’ve noticed that you aren’t using “the activist’s” name. Perhaps that’s for the best. But, as it turns out, this man has written a Facebook post that (supposedly) gave the back-story of his racist outburst. I don’t know him and I wasn’t on that subway, so I can’t say for sure that his Facebook post was honest. But then, I read his “rebuttal” to this article where he’d told Lauren Tenney that he “won’t be ‘made an example of'” and that he hoped that she’d “get what she deserved one day”. Maybe he just has a really low tolerance for social media shaming, and that’s why he’s still more focused on his own reputation than he is on how he hurt that passenger on the subway. I don’t know. But I hope that, somehow, we DO find out what’s really important to him. If he still wants to stand beside us and labor for liberty and justice, then we have to know what kind of man he really is.

  • This article was a masterpiece. And that’s very, very bad news for Mr. Douglas. Psychiatric clinicians reel in hysteria whenever they’re confronted with smart, strong, male, Black, and vengeful psychiatric patients/inmates. MIA, you’ve reached a new standard of excellence with this piece. I have only one request: remove Mr. Douglas’s name, photo, and all other identifying information from this article and the comments. This man’s captors are lazy, but not *too* lazy to troll the Internet and find what Mr. Douglas has written here. If those evil quacks see this article, they’ll NEVER set Mr. Douglas free and, I fear, they will hasten his murder-by-psychiatry. Time is of the essence.

    And to Mr. Douglas: YOU ARE A MAN! However, you must not *act* like a man until you are a FREE man.

    1) Don’t say “no” whenever your captors ask/tell you to do something that offends your dignity, but doesn’t hurt your body. You MUST promptly and subserviently do EVERY degrading thing they want you to do. It’s your only way to your hour of deliverance.

    2) If your captors do ask/tell you do do something that hurts your body, DON’T over-react or under-react. Don’t ask any questions about their latest perpetration of psychiatric torture. Don’t try to negotiate your way out of it. And don’t waste any of your precious effort on appealing to your captor’s nonexistent shreds of humanity by begging them for mercy. Even at this critical juncture, DO NOT TELL YOUR CAPTORS NO! Similarly, you must not cry or express any feelings of terror or resignation. Nor should your demonstrate any cognizance of the fact that you’re trapped or doomed. Tell your quacks that you’re scared of treatment, but feeling hopeful about its prospects for helping to “manage your symptoms” ONLY IF THEY ASK YOU how you feel about the “next stage in your treatment”.

    3) Don’t give ANYONE the benefit of the doubt. Unless you KNOW you can trust a person, DON’T.

    4) Stay physically active when nobody’s looking.

    5) Keep your mind sharp. Remember – even memorize – biographically-ordered chunks of time in your life, no matter how pointless they might seem. Write, do math problems, and work on maintaining ANY marketable skills that you’ve acquired before you got locked up. Talk if there’s ANYBODY who is safe for you to talk to.

    6) If you’re a man of faith, pray. God will ALWAYS be more powerful than psychiatry. He will strike down that basket of sin, even if you never do. Religion can be an excellent way for people to restore or strengthen their sense of justice.

    Prayers for you, Mr, Douglas. To MIA, “You Call This Help?” is the best article you’ve published so far this year.

  • For all of psychiatry’s rhetoric of “treating” and “curing” “mental illness”, they really only guarantee one thing – you’ll be fried-up and drugged-up, or else you’ll be locked up. “Functional” or “dysfunctional”, “healthy” or unhealthy, happy, miserable, or numb, YOU WILL BE “TREATED” BECAUSE THEY WANT TO CONTROL YOU! Psychiatry is the ONLY branch of medicine (using the word *very* loosely, people) that has NO goals *other than* administering (TOXIC) drugs and other “treatments”. I, for one am grateful as can be for Mr. Whitaker’s “dogged” refusal to let the public live and die in ignorance. He’s saved FAR many more lives than the sickening and lethal racket of psychiatry!

  • To “Path”

    Pathological environments damage the body. That’s where the “biological” part comes in. Toxic stress in the form of bad parenting, unemployment, divorce, crime, etc. is dangerous IN THE EXACT SAME WAYS and produces the EXACT SAME CONSEQUENCES as a near-fatal beating, for example.

    Many of us here on Mad in America have drank some or all of psychiatry’s medical-model kool-aid. It sounds like you might be one of those people, so I’ll leave you with a few words of genuinely friendly advice – PURGE THE POISON OF PRO-PSYCHIATRY PROPAGANDA FROM YOUR MIND. By the time that shit begins to hurt you, it will already be WAY too late for you to avoid its big-time problems. You’re obviously quite hopeful that a bad environment is not powerful enough to cause “bipolar”/”borderline personality disorder”/”schizophrenia”/etc., but “hope is not a plan”. And the price you may pay for your misplaced hope could be WAY to high for you to bear. Invest in your life, don’t gamble it away.

  • Psychiatry really is cutting off its nose to spite its face. Despite its current and seemingly unstoppable trend of driving Mad people into the so-called “anti-psychiatry” movement, it STILL runs out the clinicians who WOULD actually help us when no one else will. (Read Chaya Grossberg’s recent blog, “A Decade of Searching fort he Needle in the Haystack”.) That’s how you know that psychiatry, by and large, has no social or medical value whatsoever. What other industry or field of medicine could blow up the careers of its most talented and devoted workers? If only Mr. Rock had been in MY life before psychiatry nearly wrecked it for good.

  • The people on this comments page have raised many valid questions about and possible objections to this article. Since I share these questions and possible objections, I’d like to see this documentary for myself and find out if my fears and doubts about this work program are valid. I’m going to donate to this documentary’s Kickstarter account and, hopefully, in time, we’ll all get the facts about the Fageda Cooperative. Maybe we’ll all be pleasantly surprised by it once we see it in action. Who knows.

  • David, you warm our hearts and fire our bellies with your joyful spirit and sterling instincts of all that is realistic and just. So many people (including me) have more advantages than we truly appreciate, and, yet, we still cop a shitty attitude most of the time. I’m both buoyed and put to shame by your ability to bring amusement and information to total strangers at such a stressful time in your life. Good luck on your operation tomorrow! I’ll be praying for you.

  • To oldhead,

    “Do you volunteer to symbolize “society” for some equally confused and violent person?”

    Here, you are claiming that I’m choosing to substitute for and/or speak for people who are (a) as “confused” as they are “violent” (b) as “confused” and “violent” as I supposedly am or (c) some of a and b. My reading comprehension is just fine and dandy. It’s your intellect that needs a tune-up. To do that, you need to crawl out of your ego-cave and start interacting with people in a more reciprocal and civil manner. Most forms of intelligence are cultivated through productive social interactions, and perhaps those social interactions could sharpen the mind and strengthen the moral backbone of even the most basest of simpletons, such as yourself. I really wish you the best of luck in, one day, completing this elementary stage of human development.

  • To oldhead,

    First of all, I’m not violent. Fortunately, I’ve had the opportunity to both give and receive a lot of unconditional love throughout my life. Not the case for all of these mass shooters, which was my whole point – the point you keep on missing over and over again. Read the article “Excluded from Humanity: The dehumanizing effects of social ostracism” in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. Neglect is a form of aggression too, and words are as deadly is bullets. You will NEVER be able to escape those two truths, no matter how well you *think* you are at living as an island.

    Society is you, me, the people you know, the people you don’t know, the people you don’t want to know, and the people you (here’s more of your precious entitlement again) “shouldn’t have to know”. We are all part of society, despite the fact that people like you are good at tricking yourselves into believing we aren’t. Weak and greedy people like you may push some members of our society waaaay over to its remote and narrow margins, but you’ll never push those scapegoats out of our society altogether. These realities of life answer all the questions you’ve asked and could have answered yourself, if you had really tried to nudge yourself out of MEEEEE-mode. Society is created by and composed of every human being, both dead and alive. So, yes, wife abuse (and husband abuse, child abuse, cyber abuse {of which you are a perpetrator}, etc.) IS striking back at society. Every one of those victims/wannabe victims/forgotten victims/ignored victims are here in our society to stay, whether you want them around or not! And *SOCIETY* does NOT belong in quotes. There is no human achievement or failure more REAL than the societies we’ve built and destroyed over the last several dozen millennia. No society or member of society is a “symbol” for anything or anyone else. “In-groups” of societies always “symbolize” their social outcasts as “lone wolves” whenever they know that they’re too lazy to get smart about public safety and must, therefore, settle for the semantically reduced odds of reaping what they’ve sown, in lieu of putting forth the MASSIVE effort to raise a literal and sustainable level of societal harmony. People like Omar Mateen are firmly ensconced in and evenly dispersed throughout our unstable and callous society. So, trust me, they don’t require any “symbol” in order to represent themselves. Those “confused and violent” people are perceptive enough to figure out how society REALLY works and brave enough to *show* you how society REALLY works. A person like you, oldhead, who needs to take sociology and political science lessons from killers is, no doubt, the REAL criminal. You are NOT a society unto yourself. None of us are. Grow up and start treating everyone as though you can’t kick them to the curb, because the truth is that, in most instances, YOU CAN’T!!!!

  • Hey, Dr. Cornwall. Great article and many thanks to you for being in the children’s and the family’s corner, rather than just another bitch of Big Pharma. I have just one quibble with your excellent article – your assumption that all/most/a large minority of these parents actually do love their “brain diseased” children. Have you ever been on one of those blogs for “parents of ‘mentally ill’ children”? Those blogs are open social-media-sewers of eugenics and self-pity. And the quacks who “treat” these children often refer their parents to those websites in order to “provide them with an outlet” for their “dark, but understandable” feelings about the “abuse” that they’ve “suffered” at the hands of their “impossible-to-love” children. Divorce between parents and their children needs to become a reality in this country. That, for sure, would drive a stake through the gut of bio-bio-bio psychiatry.

  • So, oldhead, people who are shunned, shut-up, and slandered by everyone they know “lose their right” to strike back at a society that turns away in complacency from their humanity-corroding plight? I don’t think so. Human beings are not expendable, and it’s the recklessness and carelessness of such an INCOHERENT mindset which started a landslide of violence that has culminated (thus far) in America’s bloodiest mass shooting EVER. It is human expendability – more than guns, “mental illness”, misogyny, or anything else – which is responsible for our increasingly dangerous world. Read the New York Times article, “Thinking Against Violence”, by Natasha Lennard and Brad Evans.

  • What happened, oldhead, is that you TOTALLY (deliberately?) misunderstood what I was saying. “Bipolar” does not “indicate an acceptance of the designation as something real”. I have NO acceptance for that – or any other – psychiatric designation. None, zero, zip. “Bipolar” was the sanist slur that was flung on camera by Mateen’s slandering, bigoted, drama-queen ex-wife. I used the word “bipolar” ONLY to give you and our fellow commenters an example of how Mateen was a VICTIM of abuse *before* he was an infamous perpetrator of mass murder.

    Obviously, being Mad doesn’t give anybody a license to abuse others or themselves. But when Mad people are abusive to others or to themselves, their Madness should NEVER be exploited by *anybody* as the *sole* explanation for their destructive and/or offensive actions. In this instance, we know for sure that Omar Mateen’s family did not accept him (Mateen had to hide both his addiction and his sexual orientation from his family.), listen to him (They pathologized Mateen’s distress over their treatment of him as “bipolar”.), or respect the pace at which he was able to grow into manhood (They pushed Mateen and his ex-wife into marrying each other LONG before either of them were prepared to marry ANYONE.). Those actions are violent *even* when the people who perpetrate them are unaware that their brutal antics are pushing their victims into Madness and homicide. I DO NOT BUY the flimsy perpetrator-apologism of assuming and believing that whichever perps who sit atop the Totem of violence just “did the best they knew how to do”. Even if people shouldn’t be punished for their ignorance, they should still be blamed for the destruction that their ignorance has wrought upon society. The hopeless inaccuracy of post-mortem psychiatric “diagnoses” is yet another reason why America’s “court of public opinion” should quit scapegoating Mateen’s “severe mental illness” for his crime. By all accounts, Mateen led a self-sufficient and unremarkable life. Though he seemed to have been completely alone in the world (Based on the news reports, he’d had no friends, nasty coworkers, and a rotten family – all factors that MAJORLY contributed to his killing spree.), he did graduate community college, fully support himself through his long-time employment as a security guard, and maintain the apartment he lived in entirely by himself. Mateen’s employers demanded him and all of their other employees to take routine background checks and psychiatric exams. During the nine years that Mateen had worked in the security industry, he had never failed a single background check or psychiatric exam. Similarly, Mateen had never been under the “care” of any psychiatric clinicians. Usually, Mad people’s health, academic, social, legal, and occupational histories aren’t nearly as presentable as Mateen’s was. Our refusal to make the specious “success” = “health” argument DOES NOT absolve us from scrutinizing the premises that (a) Mateen was “severely mentally ill” and (b) that his “illness” led him to kill 49 people. Even the people who *do* (and, to repeat myself, I DON’T) believe in psychiatry won’t label anyone as “mentally ill” until AFTER they’ve exhibited more social, occupational, academic, legal, or domestic “dysfunction” than Mateen did, prior to his deadly rampage. So, it’s ridiculous for you to troll my comment history and negatively compare my current comments to my past comments. I AM right. Free Madness and Free Mad people ARE being oppressed whenever anybody – even you – decides to pigeonhole folks like Mateen into the “psycho killer” trope. Whatever Madness that Mateen may have been living with had, clearly, been a mere subtext in the totality of his life, and only a CONSEQUENCE of his horrible familial and professional environments. There’s no chance for any of the key players in Mateen’s life to EVER outrun the boomerang of culpability they’ll rightfully endure whenever public speculation lands on the role – if any – that Mateen’s supposed “bipolar disorder” may have had in the murders he committed. Oldhead, you really ought to get more focused on stopping the SPREAD of violence, rather than the public’s cogent UNPACKING of it. I’m glad the moderators deleted your vicious comment to me. It was unnecessarily aggressive and, like your latest comment, COMPLETELY out of step with what’s *really* going on.

  • Mateen’s ex-wife looked and sounded more “unstable” than Omar himself did! At least Omar didn’t try to play the victim when he was ranting about “killing n*****s” and mimicking the planes that flew into the World Trade Center. Calling “bipolar” people “abusers” is a hysterical and grossly dishonest way for sanists to manipulate the health care and legal systems into criminalizing Free Madness. Call me crazy, but I suspect that Mr. Mateen was groomed into becoming a killer by family members, coworkers, etc. who had, foolishly, decided to rest easy in their lives away from him AFTER they had treated him/made him feel like “toxic” waste.

    p.s. Google “toxic families” and see how many webpages, books, etc. refer to Mad family members as the locus of the family’s toxicity.

  • “You’re lucky you weren’t perceived as a black male.” I SO heard that, Mr. McCrea. When dealing with Black males, psychiatry won’t usually shit around with a thoughtful and pseudo-benevolent period of control-by-advice/empty promises/concern trolling/etc. The psychiatric system pretty much just skips straight to its thug jobs on their Black male patients. And they don’t get “respectfully” brutalized like Hannibal Lecter was in “Silence of the Lambs”, either. They just get treated like apes or like the dinos in “Jurassic Park”.

  • “When white people see me as black it is usually because they are trying to pick a fight with me over something they saw on Fox News”.

    I laughed out loud when I read that! It is SO true and so hilarious precisely *because* it’s true. The “Borderline Personality Disorder” diagnosis is second only to “Antisocial Personality Disorder” as THE most toxic psychiatric label that a Mad person can get. People who are labeled with BPD are so hated, I think, because, as a whole, they’re able to “play the games” of our sanist society for a while, even though they’re sometimes very Mad. Racial profiling in psychiatry is just one of the many ways it oppresses its victims. All psychiatric labels are as unscientific as they are unhelpful, and their industrious exploitation of every existing form of bigotry ensures that they’ll always have an excellent chance of becoming even more daft and counterproductive constructs.

  • You go, woman! I wish I had felt that level of entitlement to my body when I younger. Maybe then I could have tried to stop my psychiatric clinicians from lying to me, poisioning me, locking me up, and standing in the way of my dreams.

  • Psychiatrists sure aren’t playing God, but I wouldn’t discount the possibility that they’ve been visited by Satan. They may be possessed by Him and acting under his direction when they’re torturing and exterminating Mad people for money.

  • Ms. Chance’s parents were psychiatric terrorists. Her father checked out of her life and her mother both served AND drank the psychiatry kool-aid. This story should be turned into a public health ad campaign about the hazards of psychiatry, the “troubled-teen” industry, and pathogenic parents. It should also be used as proof that even the “sickest” and most unwanted people can live free, productive, and happy lives.

  • Wow, madmom! That’s extraordinary! I was one of those people who thought the Occupy movement just died out when the economy improved and a number of those Occupy protesters went back to work. The reforms they launched are exactly what Mad people need. It’s such a relief to know that Mad people may not have to “abolish” psychiatry in order to protect themselves from it. If these reforms become ubiquitous, they’ll be highly successful at imposing clear, strong, and permanent limits on psychiatry’s power to decimate Mad people.

  • I think Mad people’s so-called “delusions of grandeur” held in greater contempt by the public than are any of our other extreme states. Not threatening or unintelligible, this extreme state is, nonetheless, cruelty belittled and savagely pathologized. In general, people in our society are allowed only two methods for acquiring and assuming important and powerful social statuses – family pedigree and brute force or pedigree. Linda broke that rule when she tried to command more respect and recognition from people by moving them with the force of her electric personality. Apart from Ms. Hill and her partner, everyone punished her severely for being an “uppity” Mad woman.

    Like me, Linda was plagued by only two insurmountable forces, neither of which had anything to do with biology. The first of those forces was the natural and VERY prosocial need for human beings to tell other human beings about their dreams and plans for creating social justice in our world. An absence of a “co-traveler” and the intrusive, violent presence of a rabidly sanist community was the second force.

    Ms. Hill, God bless you for writing about the personal and interpersonal value of expressed ideas that are highly abstracted and completely intolerant towards every societal gatekeeping structure.

  • The purpose of this story was NOT to encourage Mad people to deprive themselves of sleep and drive to the Big Apple. Rather, this story provided us with a warning about the dangers of a psychiatric system that relies, firstly and only, upon the most expensive, time consuming, and rights-robbing methods of delivering Mad health care services to the public.

  • To “randall” – All this man needed was 1 dose of Ativan. He could easily have gotten that if he’d had access to a psychiatric system that WORKS. No gynecologist would give women hysterectomies for their menstrual cramps, if they could effectively resolve their patient’s discomfort with Midol. So, why should psychiatrists have the power to lock Mad people up for days, weeks, or months instead of giving them a few pills to help them sleep? It’s this kind of psychiatric OVERKILL that turns part-time psychiatric patients into full-time psychiatric patients.

  • Liza Long is about one step removed from a Munchausen mother. Assuming that her son even has a “mental illness”, she may – *may* – not be partially or totally to blame for it. (Her ex-husband sounds just as bad as she does.) But she is absolutely enjoying the power-trips and attention-trips that “parenting a brain-damaged child” has sent her on. Dr. Gold, you’re right about our toxic culture. The Liza Longs of America are not self-made or a product of *only* the Big Pharma propaganda machine. Lots of factors spawn these Mama Ratcheds, not the least of which is the glorification of “MEEEEE”! Hehe!

  • I think you’re right, Dr. Hickey. “New Anti-Drug Program Teaches Teens to Resist Psychiatry’s Constant Pressure To Use Psychiatric Drugs.” – October 6, 2015. I wish these people had been conducting their assemblies in my schools when I was young. Our acceptance (we have never and will never embrace this institution) of psychiatry in this country is like a bad never-ending to “Life of Pi”. The American people are Pi, psychiatry is “Richard Parker”, and this “clerical error” is eating US instead of the people (abusive and neglectful parents, employers, members of the clergy, etc.) who usually are our first enemies in life. Thanks for telling it like it is, Doc.

  • During the years I took psychiatric drugs, I too experienced an unstoppable need to watch “ultra-violence”. Clockwork Orange was one of my staples, as you may have just guessed. Though I made no conscious decision to stimulate my drug-numbed mind and body this way, I gravitated towards this form of self-demedication and latched onto it for dear life. My body “kept score”. It was smarter than I had the capacity to be, dumbed as I was from my daily “cocktails” of brain-damaging psychiatric narcotics. Before I finally quit taking psychiatric medications, my autonomic nervous system saved itself and the rest of me from my psychiatrists.

  • How sweet and simple. A competent psychiatric clinician would have advised her to do something like this on year 1. But finding one of them (assuming you’re looking for them outside of a “Mad in America”-type community) is as hopeless as expecting to be rescued on the highway by a caring couple. The vast majority of psychiatric clinicians who read this piece won’t congratulate Mrs. Hoblit for devoting her limited physical and emotional resources to saving the life of a dying, displaced animal. None of them will acknowledge the compassion, perseverance, inquisitiveness, or love Mrs. Hoblit was capable of, even at her most ill. Instead, those clinicians will berate Mrs. Hoblit for “self-medicating” with the turtle and for “making her husband to play doctor”. Hell, I bet they’ll even berate Mr. Hoblit for “enabling” his “manipulative” patient-wife. Because this story is emblematic of caregiving at its finest, I am confident that, in time, the majority of psychiatric clinicians will add Mr. and Mrs. Hoblit’s brave acts of generosity to their roster of feel-good anecdotes of “low-functioning ‘mentally ill’ people” and “beleaguered spouses of ‘mentally ill’ people”. However those psychiatric clinicians spin this beautiful story, they’re going to equate the Hoblits with whomever put “several shades of nail polish” on their turtle.

  • Oh, thank God I still have time to protest psychiatry’s latest deregulation scheme to expand their economic, legal, social, and physical domination of Mad people. I could kick myself for having waited till the last minute on this. Props to you, Ms. Tenney, for giving us slackers our one last chance to defeat this evil scheme.

  • The manipulation and deceit that this Ms. Parham’s bosses and colleagues put her through went far beyond just “railroading” her out of her career. Those people shit on their Hippocratic Oaths by dragging Ms. Parham through a 12-month-plus Kafka-esque re-licensing process that was intended ONLY to exhaust her resources for fighting her dismissal from her job, shame her for being Mad, and stop her from attorney from arguing that she’d not received due process before getting dismissed. That ordeal would make ANYBODY ill. Ms. Parham’s right to keep her job and her right to be cared fo as well as she’d been caring for others were both trampled by clinicians who misjudge Madness and Mad people as threats because they’re not willing to reject and fear the bigotry, among other things, that help to create it. Ms. Parham, as both a clinician and a Mad person, probably knows how much she’s missed by her patients. I, for one, am deeply saddened and angered that one of the few clinicians I’d feel safe with is no longer practicing medicine, and that the “clinicians” who’ve ousted her are still getting highly paid and respected for destroying Mad people’s health and livelihoods.

  • Dr. Steingard, your testimony was superb. Mad people can’t often count on being protected by their psychiatrists from abuses in the mental health care system. I was blown away by how you focused not only on the health-endangering aspects of forced-treatment, but also on the injustice of this form of medical abuse and the anger that Mad people feel over having to endure or risk enduring it. Thank you SO MUCH for having our backs!

  • When I was a child in the late 1980’s, I was diagnosed as autistic. Back then, many doctors still believed that autism was caused by refrigerator parents. The doctor’s prescription for me was speech and play therapy. My parents were prescribed sound, non-shaming, non-accusatory advice on how to better encourage me to express myself. Within 4 years, I no longer met the diagnostic criteria for autism. Though psychiatry later came close to foiling my second chance for a happy life, this common-sense approach to educating and caring for children DID prevent me from being seriously and permanently hurt by my clinicians during the earliest years of my life. It terrifies me to watch autistic children being cruelly and endlessly pathologized by cash-crazed doctors who don’t know what they’re doing, don’t intend to deal with the long-term consequences of their reckless actions, and don’t have the cojones to look bad, inept, or overworked parents in the eyes and say “Children this age learn most of what they know about the world from whomever is or should be caring for them. As his/her parents, your absence and/or presence in your child/children’s lives has been a top contributor to the environments that your child/children have accurately judged as being too unbearable for them to live in. I want to help you change these environments so that your child/children don’t lose the will to live.” Thank you, Dr. Holzman, for bringing autistic people into Mad in America’s ongoing discussion about the pathologization of humanity.

  • Yesterday, I doubled my monthly donation to MIA. If I could afford to, I’d have increased it tenfold. Mr. Whitaker, your writing and your creation of this website have immeasurably improved the lives of (at least) thousands and thousands of Mad people. Speaking for myself, your work has given me hope, an REAL, not a psychiatrized, identity, and information on how to exercise my rights as a citizen. I can’t thank you enough for what you’ve done and what you’re doing and planning to do. You’re my hero. Bless you.

  • Mr. Pfaff, the reason that your thousands and thousands of readers have instantaneously and vehemently praised your article is because YOU TOLD THE SCARY AND UNDENIABLE FACTS about the excruciating ravages (not side-effects) of these almost-unbelievably dangerous psychiatric narcotics. Your readers have NO option of minimizing the hellish life you led because your psychiatrists prescribed you these drugs, nor do your readers have any way to let your psychiatrists off the hook for blaming their criminally unprofessional conduct on you. It isn’t often that Mad people close off EVERY excuse that psychiatry and the “families of the mentally ill” have for why they want to or “should” go Mengele on us. Even some of the most ardent psychiatric survivors water-down their testimonies of resistance with a few perpetrator-apologist “technicalities” and “countervailing interests”. But not you. Enjoy your opportunity to raise your voice, Mr. Pfaff. You earned it and your Mad brothers and sisters who cannot yet access their after-psychiatry lives need to draw hope and and truth from your howl of protest. Good on you, Man.

  • Yessss!! Another stake through the heart of the psychiatric drug cartel! The next edition of Mad in America should be printed with a cover that reads “Still Saving Lives After All These Years”. Mr. Whitaker, you were robbed of the 1999 Pulitzer. Taking on corporate greed, sanism, and scientific fraud all in one book is the sort of gift to humanity that only a small handful of people, every century or so, will bestow upon us. Thank you for swinging the ax of truth at the poisonous trees in the forest of psychiatry!

  • I’m so sorry for your loss. A just society would have tried and convicted those quacks with fraud, theft, and murder. Of course, the kicker to that terrifying and heartbreaking story is that psychiatry will pathologize the grief and rage you feel over being robbed of a child by your doctors. More drugs, more shocks, more straight jackets, more brainwashing, and more slander for you, dear woman. There’s more I want to write, but I know that the rest of what I have to say will get deleted. It’s probably for the best, though. The pro-force psychiatry cult is probably keeping tabs on this website, the one place on the Internet where a Mad person can write freely, for the most part, and not be deleted, blocked, or called a Scientologist – all of which have happened to me on almost every other website.

    Dr. Berezin, my mom didn’t believe an Md. would reject the bio-only and bio-dominant myths of Madness. Rejecting these myths publicly, directly to Mad people, and with so much empathy for us are special accomplishments that very, very few of your peers will ever attempt. This website has saved my soul. Here, I have learned that my body belongs to me, not to psychiatry and that my inner space is no place to fear, apologize for, or keep quarantined from the world. Mad in America is the only forum that educates people about scientific reasons for why most of psychiatry is fraudulent, dehumanizing, and life-endangering pseudoscience. History will remember this website as being the first, the most successful, and the most respected source of public health information on Madness.

  • I can understand not wanting to invest your time on the hack factory that is the NY Times, but the “low-information” public might read this survey and so might the politicians who will vote on HR 2646. I hope you’ll reconsider your decision not to write a comment that opposes the conflation of public health and law emforcement initiatives. The freedom, equality, and safety of Mad people may depend on your words.

  • I’m so, so glad I’m no longer a child, teen, or young adult. Psychiatry endangered Mad youth when I was young, but it’s youth oriented propaganda didn’t exist back then. This meant that a child like me could escape psychiatry’s dishonset and hateful diatribes on the supposed inhumanity of Mad people as soon as they stepped out of the clinic. Today, Mad people, and especially Mad youth, are being crushed beneath the tread of misinformed, fabricated, fear-mongering and Mad-exterminationist propaganda as it charges into the high brow of popular culture. The old-time movie monsters such as Norman Bates and Michael Myers were goonishly sanist, but they weren’t modeled after real people or explicitly portrayed as dangerous people to love and the movies they were in didn’t have a “mission” to “educate” the public on “serious mental illness”. Propaganda like “The Mermaid” is such a menace to art and social justice because, unlike the horror movies of the 20th century, its monsters can be devilish instead of goonish and its purpose is to satisfy people’s wish to be indoctrinated into sanist ideologies instead of their voyeuristic impulses. We need another Ken Keysey to counteract this sanist hate-speech that’s being passed off as “art” and “public service”.

  • I meant to say *EXCLUDING pro-force psychiatry. Maybe psychiatry that is pro-choice can be reformed, but we must not waste our time trying to domesticate the rabid animal of pro-force psychiatry. That beast must be put down and incinerated before it kills again.

    What do you think about therapies like attachment therapy, compassion focused therapy, and minimally clinical therapies like equestrian, horticulture, and biblio-therapies?

  • So true. The “scientific advances” of psychiatry’s pharmaceutical quackery all aim to make their patients’ agile enough to teeter on the brink death for longer and longer periods of time. Psychiatrists usually want to keep you sick, not make you well.

  • I can hardly believe that I’m about to make a (very) conditional plea for reforms to psychiatry*, but here it goes. Psychiatry would be good for Mad people if it were run by people like Mr. O’Hanlon. The people on this comments page are unhappy with the torture that psychiatry has inflicted upon them, but, so far, nobody has raised a single objection to Mr. O’Hanlon’s proposed solutions to psychiatry’s MAJOR problems. We don’t have to turn away from psychiatry’s goodness in order to vanquish its evil. Let’s support Mr. O’Hanlon and take over the neighborhood.

    * pro-force psychiatry ( (1) psychiatry that a legislative or judicial body forces or “encourages” a person to obey (2) psychiatry that a person must “comply” with in order obtain basic resources and rights such as custody of their children, housing, and professional education

  • Ah, friends. If our society weren’t so sanist, the majority of Mad people would have them and psychiatry would go the way of the dinosaur. And people are really missing out on all that we have to offer. Most Mad people are more loving, forgiving, joyous, and, yes, more responsible than the people who’ve thrown us away. Not many other people appreciate the value of having people by your side when life gets hard.

  • Omg. There are just no limits to Rep. Murphy’s phobia of dissent from the people he supposedly cares about. It looks like I’ve been banned from Rep. Murphy’s Facebook page. Mad people are already being erased! Our most forceful opposition to this bill may not materialize unless it becomes law, but we can’t remain silent. I would suggest that people speak out against this bill on every forum that won’t silence them. A good place to start would be the Facebook page “Mental Illness Policy”.

  • Well, my comment got deleted but you can type “Congressman Tim Murphy PA-18 Facebook” into Google to get this sanist’s Facebook page. I’m going to try again to post a comment. I’ll be going by the name “Pat Jones”, so you can watch for my comment if you’re interested in my thoughts and Rep. Murphy’s response to them. We’ll see what happens to my comment this time.

  • This article was written almost three years ago now, and all of Mr. Risser’s observations about the Lanza family’s emotional neglect and abuse of Adam have been confirmed by every news report and investigation conducted by law enforcement that have been released to the public during this period of time. If the facts about Adam’s history of being victimized by his family had been publicized with the same fanfare as the facts about Adam’s deadly rampage, the villains of the Newtown story would have been Mr. and Mrs. Lanza and we would be on the brink of criminalizing bad parenting right now instead of “serious mental illness”.

  • You know what, Pat? Over the weekend, I tried posting a comment on Rep. Tim Murphy’s Facebook page and within 8 hours, it got deleted. We don’t live in a democracy. We live in a psychocracy. I’ve been wracking my “diseased” (Ha!) brain trying to think of some way to break down the stone wall of censorship that has created an illusion of mass support for this inhumane piece of legislation. If anybody has any ideas for how we can do this, it’s time to roll them out.

  • Laing had a lot of faults. He was an alcoholic, a diva, and he couldn’t operationalize a mental health system to save his life. But he was also a social revolutionary, a prodigious theoretician, and a prophet of the Mad. Even now, mainstream and pro-force psychiatry still feel threatened by the power of Laing’s work to help create in Mad people an understanding of what their Madness is and does, a sense of pride in their own self-expression, and a conviction that they are VERY deserving of the primally healing relationships that Mr. Thompson has so eloquently written about. Too often, even the most liberal psychoanalysts either caricaturize or shun R.D. Laing’s work. Mr. Thompson’s brilliant article showcases his own diverse talents and honors Laing’s masterpieces by carefully and creatively meshing the probity of his explanatory concepts with his beautiful depictions of the mundane, savage, and reserructive moments that Mad people lived through in institutional and post-institutional settings. This article is a gift and Mr. Thompson’s new book is officially on my to-read list.

  • You’re right, J Doe. Words matter. I’ve referred to myself in the comments section of your last article as having lived with an “addiction” to psychiatric drugs. Fortunately, another commenter gently reminded me to correct myself. Mad people’s habit of self-stigmatization fuels our habit of trusting clinicians who have proven themselves to be unable or unwilling to, at least, be honest with us about the dangers of psychiatric “care”.

  • MIA, whoever chose to publish Dr. Radcliffe’s article deserves a pat on the back. This is the first article I’ve read about a jaded clinician’s voluntary, unpretentious, and mutedly accusatory exit from their career in the field of health care. I don’t doubt that Dr. Radcliffe was a top-notch nurse, but shit happens and sometimes people just have to admit that they can no longer deal with it and still provide people with the care they deserve. Thank you, Mr. Radcliffe, for telling us about what psychiatry is like from the perspective of an ex-clinician who bowed out of medicine before they turned bitter, as opposed to after, which, as we all know, is the far more common scenario.

  • As a person who has lived experience of long-term addiction to and abstinence from psychiatric drugs, I can say with confidence that you are truly a survivor of psychiatry. In 1999, psychiatry sold me on their drugs and for three years straight, they turned my body into a chemical waste heap. Starting in 2002, I began a five year process of quitting all psychiatric medications. Before I got to the one-year-clean (yes, my body was, literally, filthy with these poisonous drugs) milestone, I had nine relapses which either preceded or followed inpatient psychiatric hospitalizations. All of my attempts at breaking my addiction to these drugs were started, failed, and completed without any medical assistance. I knew that no clinician would help me stop these drugs and that I could be petitioned for court-ordered treatment if anyone knew about my “medication noncompliance”. This was the hardest time of my life and it was all the fault of psychiatry, yet no psychiatric clinician ever tried to help fix or compensate me for the problems their “profession” was putting me through. To endure this and then relive it in detail on the Internet is beyond brave. I am in awe of your indomitable self-worth and your genuine concern for the health and safety of Mad people.

  • Good grief! This bozo’s genteel evasion of recovery-based services and Mad people who are journeying through their own recoveries is a large part of why the general public and the Mad community distrusts psychiatry! Overdramatizing the limitations Mad people have and pompously charting out the course of Mad lives as being fraught with continued hospitalizations, loneliness, and lack of purpose are clinical failures all by themselves. But this quack expresses these lies, vitriol, and junk science in the most dodgy ways he can. Corinna, you’ve done more to inspire Mad people such as myself than these bigots and peddlers of pseudoscience ever will. Taking these folks to task in public and without reticence was the right thing to do, even if they never read this blog post. Good for you!

  • To Sera 11/8/2015 8:14 pm

    “I’m not asking people to be perfect. . .”

    Spot on again, Sera. Such a “John Henryist” response to the mud-slinging tactics of our adversaries will only cause them to further raise the level of “health” or “social assimilation” that Mad people must reach before we can be deemed by these sanity police as worthy of public toleration. No matter how much we achieve against such staggering odds, we’ll never be “adjusted” enough for the most hard core sanists. Mad people may need to be beyond reproach, but it’s a virtual certainty that we’ll make mistakes in our public and private lives because we can’t – and shouldn’t – ever be finished with our growth as activists and as people. Mistakes are the richest source of life lessons to learn from.

  • You are absolutely correct about how the individuals who become fame whores hurt the Mad rights movement and all of the other civil rights movements. R.D. Laing could have had a much better chance at reforming psychiatry if he hadn’t turned into a diva. Mad rights activists can’t afford to succumb to ANY vices. There are many, many people (Rep. Tim Murphy, Dr. Jeffrey Lieberman, Susan Inman, etc.) who will sniff out our human frailties, exaggerate them, and then sink our civil rights movements by assassinating our characters because they can’t refute us on the issues. They can’t play clean, so we can’t play dirty. We must be beyond reproach.

  • To chrisreed 11/3/2015 1:01 pm

    “. . . I feel that my sense of hopelessness upon being released from the psych ward was a product of societally induced stigma.”

    I know exactly what you mean. It frightens me now to remember feeling empty and almost heartbroken when I had completed an almost two-month long inpatient and partial hospitalization program. Now, I have nightmares about running away from the psychiatric hospital. I liken this horrific experience with psychiatry to a battered woman who misses her husband when he cheats on her, but revels in her liberty and self-respect when he divorces her and finds a new “bitch” to beat on.

  • When I entered the mental health system, Dr. Berezin’s approach to treating people’s extreme states was the standard of professional care that I had expected to receive from the clinicians who had promised to sensitively and competently address my own extreme states. I really wish I had known back then that most Mad people will be destroyed by the mental “health” system long, long before they ever come close to finding a doctor who wants to use psychiatry to help them heal from their pathologenic families, schools, workplaces, etc. and who has no plans or repressed urges to dehumanize Mad people, their needs, and their autobiographies by tapping into psychiatry’s vast capacity for evil. Dr. Berezin, history will be much kinder to doctors like you than it will to your pill-pushing, bio-reductionist counterparts. Your devotion to the health of Mad people and to the science of psychiatry is an act of integrity and love for Madkind that restores and replenishes Mad people’s hope for a life which can be longer and fuller because of the knowledge, skills, and services they receive from doctors like you.

  • To Ms. Altman,

    So you think that Mad people are “indulging” when they live in their extreme states as they process the trauma and victimization that made these states essential for the preservation of their lives? Ms. Altman, you’ve hit a new low. Framing extreme states as “symptoms” of “mental illness”, I suppose, that ruin Mad people’s lives unless they are “treated” by the drugs, shock treatments, and psychiatric incarcerations that have a 300-year long track record of utter failure is patently and inexcusably sanist. As for the friends, families, coworkers, and employers of Mad people, I believe they need to think about how they would want to be supported by the people they’ve emotionally or financially invested in if disability or Madness ever becomes their new way of living. Intolerance is what ruins Mad people’s lives, not their extreme states. I know. I’m a Mad person and I can vouch for our ability to sustain relationships that are safe and happy for us and our able-normative friends, coworkers, employers, and family members. All that the significant others of Mad people need to do is obey the golden rule. TREAT OTHERS THE WAY YOU WANT TO BE TREATED.

  • Are you serious? You’re singing the praises of Dr. Seager? That bozo is vying to be the next E. Fuller Torrey. He is pro-force, pro-biomedical model, anti-rights, and anti-sociomedical model. He is NOT an advocate for Mad people or our supporters. The people Dr. Seager cares about are sanists, the “families of the mentally ill”, Big Pharma, and the politicians who quell the fears and anxieties of the masses by promising them that all the ills of society will be eliminated once Mad people are drugged and incarcerated. Why in the world would you speak so highly of his violent schemes?

  • Healthy and happy people assume responsibilities after, not before, they decide when they’re going to hand these responsibilities over to the people who are, or should be, the next people to deal with these worries and this unfinished business. Your use of the word “blame” suggests that you don’t believe “some people” have the right to do this, or else that they aren’t using this right wisely. Maybe they’re not, but there are way too many laypeople and mental health professionals who believe that Mad people shouldn’t be able to place limits on the responsibilities they encumber themselves with, just like everyone else does. I don’t mean to suggest that *you* are one such mental health professional, but please try to remember to give all people, not “some people” the interpersonal responsibility talk prior to giving them the personal responsibility talk.

  • Corinna, you are so brave. I’m not sure if I would have the balls to reenter the mental ILLNESS system for help, knowing that I’d have to dodge all of the dangers of this corrupt and primitive system. Somehow, though, you’re doing it and it’s helping you along with all of the people you’ve shared your story with. Your drive and sense of – dare I say it – entitlement to make psychiatry serve YOU and not the other way around boggles my mind. It’s often hard to talk about these things, even privately, so I’m incredibly impressed by your gracious gesture of candor that might perhaps be costing you some of your privacy. More Mad people, me included, might benefit themselves by becoming more outspoken about what our Mad Health needs and challenges are.

    As Mad people well know, the biographical significance of any tragedy, exercise of human volition, or act of God (or destiny/luck/universe/etc.) can be ransacked by psychiatric clinicians who see no need to learn how to live within unsightly, puzzling, incomplete, and obtrusive life circumstances or around any people they can blame for these circumstances. Laing said that the only pain that can’t be beared is the pain that we try and run from. Psychiatric clinicians, maybe in part due to a reaction formation against one of psychiatry’s most reviled geniuses, blow off this pearl of wisdom. After birth and death, there is no state of being more human than Madness. All of the familial, social, cultural, economic, and political roots of Mad people’s extreme states are shared by every person on Earth. Though everybody won’t be equally vulnerable to each of these biographical influences, it’s not possible for anyone to make themselves invulnerable to all of these influences through prayer, wealth, power, psychiatry, or anything else. The psychiatric clinicians who have sought to make themselves the only people that can name reality have usually employed the pseudoscience of psychiatry to stand in for a humble acknowledgement of what really caused the pain they feel and the pain they feel over their fear of future pain. Identifying the source of one’s suffering is a person’s first step towards loosening its chokehold on their life. Since Mad people’s wannabe arbiters of reality haven’t even gotten this far in maintaining their own psychological hygeine, we’re already one step ahead of our clinicians by the time they begin “treating” us. These emotionally, spiritually, and cognitively underdeveloped psychiatric clinicians mishandle this professional embarrassment by pulling the Mad people they treat down to their level. By using psychiatry to replace the life story of Madness with the “case history” of “mental illness”, psychiatric clinicians can brainwash Mad people into becoming as broken as they are. Without a point of reference for our Madness that is anchored in the time and space of the interactive world we live in, Mad people won’t ever heal because our brainwashing into the medical-model of “mental illness” will leave us with no words with which we can retrieve or rebuild our individual and relational selves. This “doctored” ruin of Mad lives is the fail-safe way for our psychiatric clinicians to avoid being the only people in the “therapeutic” relationship who collapse during their lifelong flight from the pain that makes us Mad and off to a nonexistent biographical wasteland of pseudo-sanity. What losers they are. Too often, Mad people just have no fucking clue that our “treatment” is a crutch for the sickest people who disguise themselves as the healthiest.

  • To humanbeing 9/21/15 at 4:30 pm

    You’re right. Most psychiatrists don’t do that. With my last psychiatrist, I had to struggle constantly with him to respect my VERY thoughtful choice to stay off of medication. He was the only psychiatrist out of the many I had sought care from over the preceding 12 years who had grudgingly *let* me control what goes into my body and what stays out of it. Needless to say, my misguided decision to expend all of this energy on keeping my psychiatrist from poisoning me to death eventually backfired on me. By the time I started feeling anxious, frightened, and depressed again, I had already blown my limited resources for self-preservation on his sorry ass. That was when I left psychiatry in my rear-view and tried to gut out the negative aspects of my extreme states on my own, which is where I’m at in my life today. Peer support and talk-based psychiatry could be the cornerstones of mental health care, but Mad people and our allies are going to probably have to lean on these “angels of death” before that can happen.

  • To humanbeing 9/21/2015 at 3:29 pm

    Actually, I’ve come across a few first-person stories of psychiatry’s successes. The Western Massachusetts Recovery Learning Center looks promising. Susan Weinreich’s story in the book “Far from the Tree” and Catherine Penney’s and Joanne Greenberg’s stories in the documentary “Take These Broken Wings” are some examples of these successes. The catch is, psychiatry will probably have to be blown up and rebuilt, almost from the ground up, in order to make these the typical experiences that Mad people have when they seek help with living through their extreme states.

  • To uprising 9/21/2015 at 1:57 pm

    I think “the good” is, at the present time, still a fuzzy and hesitant place in our hearts that sees the day of deliverance which remains invisible to the concrete realities of our lives, but is clearly sensed by the people who look hard enough for it within this IS. Eric Coates wrote an article this week about “seeing” a community college in the dilapidated ruins of abandoned buildings on the state hospital grounds. He also wrote about “seeing” the doors of the closets in his hospital room that were removed for the “patient’s safety”. I have had dreams about walking into the “special schools” of my teenage years and “seeing” the people there living bountiful domestic, academic, and professional lives. This dream felt indistinguishable from the IS, despite the fact that none of these things have, to this day, ever taken place there. Faith is the lifeblood of progress. We mustn’t let the sanists anywhere, not even the ones on this website, drain it from our souls.

  • I’ll be the first to admit that I was once a global warming skeptic. I was one of the many people who laughed at Al Gore when he made his award-winning documentary “An Inconvenient Truth”. Ten years later, I was no longer laughing when the floods in the Midwest got so heavy that my car nearly floated off the Interstate. The public’s tendency to equate “easy” with “safe” is one of the common threads between denial of climate change and denial of the social model of Madness. Cars are easy, so we assume that they’re safe. Pills are easy, so we assume that they’re safe. Somehow, people need to become brave enough to equate social responsibility with safety. That’s going to be necessary for the world to stop raping the planet by depleting its resources and butchering Mad people by drugging, electrocuting, and brainwashing us.

  • So this is supposed to be a love story about a pathologically dysfunctional couple who was, “tragically”, very much in love but also very much to blame for each other’s “need” to be incarcerated in psychiatric hospitals because they were too “brain diseased” for a life as husband and wife in the real world. Dr. Hoffman could have written an account of Pierre’s and Shelley’s years of being alternately dominated and neglected by our society which centered this two-pronged approach to their annihilation around the family members, clinicians, etc. that chose to make themselves the biggest impediments to Pierre’s and Shelley’s efforts to realize their dreams of escaping pro-force psychiatry, marrying each other, and raising a family. This forum would not have attempted to stop Dr. Hoffman from trying, at long last, to give Pierre and Shelley a voice, but instead of doing that, he sloughed off psychiatry’s violation of Pierre’s and Shelley’s rights to a spousal relationship, reproductive freedom, custody of their children, freedom from wrongful imprisonment, bodily autonomy, a home in the community, and the health gains that people accumulate when they lead independent and active lives. Dr. Hoffman has shrewdly manufactured his melodramatic account of Pierre’s and Shelley’s plundered romance and lives by thinly veiling his paternalistic message with a pitiful and phony show of grief over the very real poignancy of Pierre’s and Shelley’s futile fight for life and love. In short, Dr. Hoffman extols the virtues of psychiatry’s choice to revoke, for Pierre’s and Shelley’s own good, of course, almost all of their human and civil rights, his reasoning being that this man and woman weren’t human enough to do anything, either together or apart, other than “play house” for a few years. No mention is made in this piece of why there weren’t home health care or child care supports available to this couple. By default, then, all of the blame for what became of Pierre and Shelley is foisted onto their “illnesses” even though their formal and informal caregivers had only a shallow and fleeting interest in the quality of their lives. Psychiatry’s victimization of Pierre and Shelley has been renewed by Dr. Hoffman’s piece in Mad in America this week.

    This was the worst article that I’ve ever read on Mad in America. I would expect this from just about any other website, but I didn’t think I’d ever read a piece like this here. Ms. Altman’s article this week wasn’t much better than this one. Mad in America has given the world its first free Mad News source that integrates the viewpoints of EVERY sector of the Mad community. I donate money every month to this website and it is still my favorite website. It’s revolutionized my life for the better. I don’t expect it to be all things to all people, but I hope you’ll continue to keep it a welcoming and an informative place for Mad people who need an online community that emboldens them to make themselves healthy and happy.

  • 4 fucking months as a psychiatric inmate and goodness knows how many more on psychiatric probation? There’s no way that Mr. Coates was or is “disabled” enough or “dangerous” enough to merit all of that. I just hope that the state is too lazy to troll the Internet and read these comments. Right now, freedom speech is a serious liability for this man. If Mr. Coates works the system and doesn’t let the system work him, he may be able to get away from this persecution within a year or so. Keep your head up Mr. Coates, but not too high, eh. You don’t want the pro-force psychiatry goons to label you as “grandiose”.

  • Now *this* is how to use psychiatric medication – on YOUR own terms. No tricks, no lies, and no heavy-duty interminable pill-popping. Corinna isn’t “managing” some imaginary “brain disease” called schizophrenia/bipolar/borderline personality/etc. She is softening the physical and emotional blows of a serious injury for which she is receiving appropriate care. Psychiatry is NOT replacing real solutions for the problems which were caused by a fall that nearly cost Corrina her life. Her humility, flexibility, and initiative to create a strong support system that includes psychiatry, but not to the exclusion of a wide variety of other formal and informal treatments, is an inspiration to me.

  • Dr. Brogan’s defense of public safety and the scientific method are examples of the Hippocratic Oath in action. If patients could take for granted that their doctors will assist them in taking care of their basic needs, we could dispassionately read Dr. Brogan’s article and not give a second thought to the liberties we enjoy that are secured for us by clinicians like Dr. Brogan who commit their professional, and sometimes also their personal lives, to policing psychiatry. But since patients can’t just expect that their doctors will be proactively honest instead of reactively or reluctantly honest, we have to commend Dr. Brogan for helping to make medicine safe for people who either can’t or don’t want to use medical science to feed their greed-and-power trips. Dr. Brogan, we treasure your intelligence, your courage and, your unconditional obedience to the rules for the study and practice of medicine.

  • To oldhead 9/19/2015 3:04 pm

    You know, maybe it was a Freudian slip. I meant to say “speak out AGAINST”. That just goes to show how deeply disturbed this article makes me feel and how unsure I am about what good-hearted clinicians should do to maneuver the sanist psychiatric system that oppresses Mad people.

  • This is an excellent point and it’s one that I think Ms. Altman should have addressed in her article. The days that Mary spent on the ward weren’t the biggest decimation of her liberty. The psych drugs were. That poison will disable and silence her long after her days, weeks, or months on the ward are up. Even if – and this is a BIG if – involuntary treatment was necessary, it should only have been limited to hospitalization and, perhaps, a *very* low dose of medication. Unfortunately for Ms. Altman, she could not control whether or not Mary was force-drugged. The choice to pump this vulnerable woman full of toxic chemicals was made by her Gobbelsian psychiatrist, whoever he or she was. That monster is who we should all be railing against.

  • To B 9/18/2015 6:40 pm

    I TOTALLY understand your anger. If I’m ever AOT’d, I think I’ll probably be among the millions of people who kill themselves within a year of their discharge from the my “care”. The stakes are life and death, AOT or no AOT. Ms. Altman, though, is different from the majority of psychiatric drones that destroy Mad people’s lives with “coercive compassion”. She seems to want to help develop safe, individualized, and force-free mental health programs. I would imagine that she is one of many people working in the pro-force psychiatric systems who would gladly implement healthy, holistic, and effective alternatives to the abusive and counterproductive psychiatric policies and programs that Mad people hate. Mad people need to be giving Ms. Altman’s feelings and experiences the respect they deserve and we need to keep in mind that clinicians take on huge professional obstacles for themselves when they speak out on behalf of the systemic abuse and neglect of Mad people by pro-force and mainstream psychiatry. What Ms. Altman does for us is immensely important and it’s not an easy thing for her to do, so please try to hate the game and not the players.

  • To ManintheMoon 9/3/2015 12:28 pm

    Dude, give it a rest!! You may not be “trying” to be mean, but you *are* being mean, and you know it. Dr. Burstow is on our side. Psychiatric clinicians who fight for Mad rights are as rare as they are precious and gifted. The power to abolish psychiatry as it exists today rests with those people like Dr. Burstow who can earn a dollar by making mental health care safe, humane, and healing. If pro-choice psychiatry is profitable, pro-force psychiatry will meet its long-awaited destruction.

  • To acidpop5 9/8/15 9:21 pm

    That was a frightening account of psychiatry’s underpublicized dark side and unfortunately, it’s thoroughly believable. This is, literally, armed robbery. Instead of using a knife or a toy gun, they use the petition for court ordered “treatment”. Industries, not people should have been the targets for the tough-on-crime laws we passed in the 80’s 90’s and early 00’s. Guild privilege is the only difference between an unemployed parolee who mugs a housewife at gunpoint and a psychiatrist who threatens to AOT her unless she stays bombed on his benzodiazepines all day.

    One explanation for this criminal act of medical malpractice is that certain psychiatric clinicians feel hooked on the greedy feelings of self-satisfaction they give themselves by choosing to mooch off of a profession where they will be handsomely paid by disadvantaged people even if they fail miserably at the jobs they’re licensed by the state to perform and even if their failures cripple and kill the trusting and vulnerable people who desperately need competent care. Most of these money-nuts quacks don’t give a damn if you ingest their poison or not. They just don’t want you to throw them off of the bio-torture gravy train, so they’re often willing to overlook your non-compliance with treatment as long as you never refuse to keep their pockets lined with blood money. For most Mad people, their bodily autonomy and all of the freedoms they derive from it are well worth $300 a month.

    The less mercenary, but more life-threatening, reason for this hold-up is that many crap clinicians enter psychiatry after they’ve devoted years of their lives to rigorous and ongoing regimens of self-indoctrination into pop and formal psychiatry, through which they become proficient at colonizing Mad minds and lives. Clinicians of this sort are the truly dangerous ones. They want much more from you than money. Psychiatry is, quite possibly, the only thing these quacks believe in and they approach their “work” with a missionary zeal. Threats to sick the law on non-compliant patients and grim, but unfounded, predictions of what their futures will be if they set limits on treatment or quit it altogether are two of the most common ways that these extremist psychiatric clinicians try to scare people into following their orders. Though both of these scare tactics have been proven to worsen the “prognoses” of our so-called “illnesses”, this causal relationship between “offensive medicine” and poor health is condemned as psychiatric heresy by the fanatic clinicians who employ these tactics. Clinicians whose belief in psychiatry is saturated with a fervor that has burned out their logic hold as the indisputable truth two complementary assumptions. The first assumption is that psychiatry is incapable of creating or exacerbating any of their patient’s suffering. The second and blatantly macabre assumption is that Mad people are more valuable in death than they are in an un-psychiatrized lives. These foolish assumptions are bound by the same meta-cognition that all dogmas use to intertwine faith with action – valorization of conformity to a prescribed set of rules for living rather than the ends that are achieved by this surrender of free will. Mad people can, conceivably, exhibit as many or more “symptoms” of mental “illness” in treatment as they do out of treatment, but the “treated” Mad person is judged by their despotic clinicians as more “mature”, “grateful”, and “intelligent” than the equally “sick” non-compliant Mad person because they are “active” in their own “recovery” whereas the Mad person who eschews psychiatry is rebuked for lacking “drive” and demonized for throwing away the only path to recovery that is acknowledged by this radical sect of psychiatry.

    The social stigma that psychiatric clinicians feel so victimized by is 100% their fault. Their unwillingness to own up to that is extremely discouraging to Mad people who want to work with them in reforming psychiatry, not against them. Some Mad people might become reticent to form partnerships with psychiatric clinicians when they carefully think about the social and medical consequences that all Mad people will bear from psychiatric clinicians whose party line is that their science and ethics are on par with those of every other branch of medicine.

  • encephalopathycauses-smi 9/8/15 12:41 pm

    So Pete’s whole family is in on the pro-force psychiatry racket and they threaten to disown Kevin unless he poisons himself on psychiatric narcotics? These people are monsters. They need to be very grateful that even some of the fiercest critics of their pro-force psychiatry campaigning don’t know those things about them. If Kevin dies as a result of chemical toxicity, his family should be charged with 1st degree murder.

  • I’m glad that so many people defended HVN on the Facebook comments to Ms. Inman’s article. Let’s hope she’s been reading them.

    Bio-only and bio-dominant models of psychiatry insist, to the contradiction of every study and all of the real-world evidence, that Susan Inman’s daughter is “suffering” from a mental “illness” that is caused by a biological dysfunction which is most likely located somewhere inside her brain. Were this “medical” model not being strongly, incessantly, and creatively discredited by a wide variety of reputable laypeople and professionals, we could easily tolerate the conspicuous absence of Ms. Inman’s daughter from the discussion of what psychiatry is doing, could do, and should be doing. Under the “medical” model, her criticisms of psychiatry, her ideas about what she needs from psychiatry, and her appreciation of certain aspects of psychiatry could all be dismissed as untrustworthy. If Susan Inman’s daughter challenged what her family or clinicians said or did, they would tell her that she’s needy, paranoid, dramatic, and self-pitying because her “broken” brain can’t help but look a gift horse in the mouth. Should Ms. Inman’s daughter approve of the way she’s being treated by her family and clinicians, they would attribute this concordance with “sane” people to a deferential posture that Ms. Inman’s daughter assumes out of impotent resignation to the indignity of being forced to “retire” her self-determination because her brain is “broken”. This psychiatric double-bind cannot be tested and theories that cannot be tested hold no scientific value whatsoever. It’s time for Susan Inman to take off the tinfoil hat and quit trying to spin torture into treatment.

    Fortunately for Ms. Inman’s daughter and for Mad people as a whole, EVERY voice matters because bio-only and bio-dominant theories of psychiatry are nothing more than medical urban legends.
    Believing Susan Inman’s accounts of her daughter’s extreme states before her daughter confirms the veracity of these accounts is both morally and intellectually indefensible. Susan Inman is claiming that the Inman family and the psychiatric clinicians they’ve hired to “treat” her daughter’s “serious mental illness” are the people who are primarily responsible for her daughter’s “return to sanity”. Susan Inman’s memoir about her daughter’s “recovery” from “serious mental illness” was published in 2010. If Ms. Inman’s daughter has been “healthy/healthier” for at least the last five years, then she should be in good enough shape by now to verify the claims that her mother has made about how greatly she’s benefited from the social, medical, and legal effects of being “cared for” by her family, the bio-only/bio-dominant psychiatric clinicians, and by their collaborators who work in the civil and criminal law enforcement systems. By what means can Ms. Inman’s daughter truly feel connected to people who are given permission by psychiatry to treat her in whatever way they see fit, thanks to a pseudoscientific ideology of psychiatry that blames “bad brains” for mental “illness” instead of bad people? How has the health of Ms. Inman’s daughter improved by clinicians who purport to “treat” abnormalities of biology that nobody has discovered yet and which might not even exist? Now that Ms. Inman’s daughter has been labeled as “suffering from anosognosia” (i.e. a person’s rejection of their bullshit psychiatric diagnosis), her legal right to protect herself and her property from being controlled by her family, clinicians, etc. has been revoked because a “diagnosis” of “anosognosia” is viewed under the law as proof that you lack the cognitive skills to make your own decisions. By contrast, Ms. Inman’s daughter is also considered to be legally incapable of exercising unilateral power over her own life even if she obeys her family and clinicians without fail. Did Ms. Inman’s daughter really complete some process of emotional adjustment that enabled her to become satisfied with or even inured to the theft of her full citizenship by this grossly manipulative deprivation of her liberty? The fact that Susan Inman’s daughter hasn’t publicly answered any of these questions by now is probably a HUGE sign that she has been and still is dreadfully unhappy and/or sick, despite what her mother has been telling the public. Susan Inman may very well be damaging her daughter and duping the public. Until we hear Susan’s daughter agree with her mother’s recollections and opinions, we need to assume that we’re being scammed by Susan Inman’s showboating of the success that she claims her daughter is enjoying, ostensibly, because she “complies” with her mother’s wishes and with the quacks her mother pays to make those wishes come true.

    Almost everyone who agitates for the “medical” model of psychiatry and for the pro-force mental “health” laws that it rationalizes are sanists who act out their rabid prejudice against Mad people by neglecting and abusing their Mad family members, friends, and patients. I’m sure that Susan Inman is a member of this “immoral majority”, but the part of Susan Inman’s so-called “mental health advocacy” that really gives me the creeps is how she uses her daughter as a mythical testimonial of the advantages that Mad people supposedly stand to gain from the clinician-centered and family-centered goals of the pro-force mental “health” laws and the bio-only, bio-dominant psychiatric systems. If Mad people were listening to this sales pitch for a return to mid-20th century psychiatry directly from Ms. Inman’s daughter, we could and, in my opinion, should seriously listen to whatever she had to say. Solidarity with our Mad sister, if nothing else, would compel us to honor her experience with psychiatry, however different it may be from our own. Unfortunately for us and, most of all, for Ms. Inman’s daughter, the rights-scarce and deficit-focused denomination of psychiatry appears not to be producing positive outcomes for her that can be observed by anyone who isn’t a player on “Team Inman”. From what anyone outside of this “Team” can determine, Susan Inman’s daughter leads a good life in the ink and paper of her mother’s writings and nowhere else. Whether or not Ms. Inman’s daughter leads a good life in real space is a mystery of modern psychiatry! My fear is that Susan Inman is silencing her daughter and keeping her out of sight while she slowly maims or murders her through a torture-for-profit psychiatric system that helps “well” family members wage biological warfare against their Mad family members. This has not been a good year for adult sons and daughters of NAMI-mommies. Zac Pogliano and Natalie Fuller have both bitten the dust this year. Not even Mad in America has written an article about their deaths, both of which were caused by the evils of psychiatry that so enrage and sadden us. I wouldn’t be shocked if Susan Inman’s daughter met an “untimely” death while she was receiving “quality care” from her family and their hired goons. I really think that Susan Inman would rather see her daughter dead or a vegetable than to see her live a Mad life that’s overflowing with purpose and love.

  • I think the most powerful way to silence Pete Earley would be for his son Kevin to vehemently and publicly reject his dad’s pro-force psychiatry campaigning and quit the “treatment plans” that his dad has been “encouraging” him to remain compliant with. The public would be a lot less reluctant to support people’s right to freedom of choice in how they address their extreme states if they could easily access information about the gamut of consequences that ANYONE can face in their lives when they seek out or are pushed into the mainstream and pro-force psychiatric systems. The discomfort that may be evoked in some people when they hear that sinister, but truthful narrative could be eased considerably if we were to conclude it by showing these skeptical and curious people who have opened their minds to our message how healthy, productive, and joyful this freedom of choice can be for the large majority of psychiatric consumers and survivors. Mad in America should reach out to Mad people who are involved in NAMI and MHA as well as Mad people who aren’t involved in either of those groups but who have friends or family members that use these groups’ influence and information to curtail the Mad person’s rights.

  • This documentary looks great! I can’t wait to watch it. Mr. Oaks, you are such a positive role model and advocate for Mad people. We greatly appreciate your intelligence, kindness, and trailblazing spirit. You’ve opened the door to a better way of life for so many people who’ve fallen (or who’ve been pushed) into the nearly inescapable hellholes of mainstream and pro-force psychiatry. I can’t identify very much with most of the people I admire, but I can identify with you. Thank you so, so much for giving people like me an example to follow for building some much-needed creative maladjustment into our own lives.

  • Mr. N’s story is a shining example of why avoiding the trap of overpathologizing Mad people’s extreme states is so important to the restoration of our health and the preservation of our futures. He has exited his extreme states as a smarter, stronger, and more spiritual man than he was before he became “sick”. Tim may well have become a psychiatric zombie if had he not been cared for by a compassionate group of people who gave him the freedom and support to feel his feelings, learn from them, and eventually create tangible improvements in his life with the lessons his madness had taught him. Going against the psychiatric status-quo took real grit and ingenuity. Mr. N should be very proud of himself for taking his life into his own hands even though he was mentally, socially, and financially hanging on by his fingertips.

  • I believe that psychiatry would be a safe, healing, and medically sound field of medicine today if deinstitutionalization had not been hampered by pill-pushing psychiatrists who wouldn’t stand up to the so-called “families of the mentally ill” groups and community mental health models that attempted to replicate long-stay hospitals (i.e. sheltered workshops, congregate housing, forced drugging, etc.). If only Mad people had had enough time to establish themselves as full and free citizens before we got pummeled by sanism 2.0. For the last 35 years, Mad people have been living through our Jim Crow era. I hope with all of my heart that I’ll live to see this era end.

  • “The only thing normal is madness itself.”

    Genius. Simple genius. The first step on the road to becoming a self-hating Mad person is a feeling and, in most instances, a reality of painful and permanent exile from the so-called “civilized” world. A Mad person who regains or develops confidence in both their worthiness to and ability to judge for themselves where their ideas and the ideas of others fall on the continuum of reality has excelled at developing an unconditional respect for and knowledge of their status as a human among humans.

    For neurotypical people, this way of being in the world is usually foreclosed to them by the sanism that they perpetrate almost as much against themselves as they do against Mad people. That, however, is the price they pay for grasping at a quick fixes to life’s most trying crises. Thank goodness we don’t have the choice to try and alienate ourselves from the inconvenient parts of life in a futile attempt to give ourselves some inner peace.

  • A sick society, indeed. Mad people are so often denied a piece of their humanity because the sanist able-normative majority psychiatrizes us by refusing to honor who we are PRIOR to and ABOVE our “patient” and “patient-based” selves. Human beings have spent thousands of years evolving to become the species we are today by creating, maintaining, and changing social relationships that keep us alive, breeding, and thriving. The sanist population of the able-normative majority disrupts and often terminates Mad people’s ability and opportunity to build and keep these relationships. How could Mad people possibly exist in a world which insists upon our compulsory devolution to a less-advanced form of humanity and not suffer biological repercussions from this savagery?

  • Mr. Morasse, Mad people are standing beside you. When your bio-psychiatric peers are forced to close their practices because all of their clients have “voted with their feet” and ran away from their sanism and pseudoscience, they’ll find all of their “dropouts” with clinicians like you. If I had had access to a psychologist like you when I was a teen, I would have cut my quacks loose faster than you could banter “brain disease”.

  • I can’t wait to read this book! It’s wonderful to finally read an ACCURATE story of fiction about the Mad Experience. ECT was one bullet I managed to dodge before I gave “the finger” to psychiatry and fled its pseudoscience and path to utter destruction. For that, I will forever be grateful.

  • “I don’t believe in God. . .” is, tied with the Washington Post’s piece on Alison Hymes, the mainstream media’s best article on Mad Rights and Mad Health in the year 2015.

    It’s evident now that Ms. Lowe’s psychiatrist had no desire to ever set Jamie free from the deadly and dehumanizing control of mainstream and pro-force psychiatry. Embarking upon a lifestyle of abstinence from psychiatric drugs and psychiatric brainwashing is risky, time-consuming, and labor intensive for even the mildest forms of mental illness. But for people such as Ms. Lowe or myself who live with what are now considered to be serious mental illnesses, a clinician’s ambivalent or lukewarm commitment to our emancipation from mainstream and pro-force psychiatry will do nothing more than make us needlessly suffer and expose them as the quacks they really are. If Ms. Lowe’s circumstances were similar to my own, she would not even have had a long shot at breaking her physical and emotional dependency on psychiatric drugs and psychiatric brainwashing without a YEARS-LONG period of rehabilitation that consisted of live-in housekeeping and home health care, a hiatus from demanding professional and social obligations, rehospitalizations to manage the relapses, and CFT (compassion focused therapy). This doctor behaved negligently and maliciously by withholding these services from a patient whom they agreed to assist in leaving the mental health system and by failing to inform them of the potential for negative outcomes during a termination of treatment which would be almost entirely unsupervised and unsupported. Understandably, the trauma of those negative outcomes had sapped Ms. Lowe of the energy she needed to act upon her dormant instincts of self-preservation and begin to question both her doctor’s motives for abdicating his responsibilities to her and her friends’, family members’, employers’, and neighbors’ reasons for making her feel “menacing” and “unbearable”. Exhausted and stripped of hope and self-worth, Ms. Lowe was compelled to resign herself to a lifetime of pharmaceutical roulette and unstable, inauthentic relationships with herself and with the people who remain invested in her as long as she conforms to the norms of our sanist world. This was the only possible result from the unprofessional, deceitful, malicious, and reckless choices that Ms. Lowe’s doctor made regarding her care, and I doubt that he would ever want her living any other way.

    Unfortunately for the lay reader of this article, they are not likely to glean that from this propaganda which subtly but fervently advocates for able-normative supremacy and for the sanist mental health care policies it spawns, the two of which had torpedoed Ms. Lowe’s recovery from her mental and iatrogenic illnesses. A person who has not yet had the opportunity to learn the truth about recovery from mental illness will be fooled into thinking that a Mad person’s “recovery” is the 15 to 20 year window of time that precedes their early death from the psychiatric drugs they consume to aid their efforts at masquerading as an able-normative person. This masquerade, as Ms. Lowe makes perfectly clear in her op-ed, is played by the Mad person in order to make their appearance, speech, behavior, and needs palatable to the able-normative majority. Though the costs that Mad people incur as they endeavor to appease a sanist world are social marginalization, self-alienation, a weakened body, and premature death, this article will lead the lay reader to rationalize these affronts to human dignity as the punishment meted out by God-like psychiatrists to Mad people for being “menacing” and “unbearable” genetically deformed scourges. Ms. Lowe’s readers will deduce this from her op-ed just as she herself deduced this from the people who inculcated her own hatred for herself so many years ago.

    The apparently stigmatizing effect of this message on Mad people, at first glance, seems amplified by the fact that it was written by a Mad woman. Upon closer analysis, however, one can recognize and appreciate its power to debunk the sanist attitudes that have and are continuing to ruin and snuff out the lives of so many Mad people, her life not excluded. Ms. Lowe has written, to date, the best first-person account of internalized sanism that I have ever read. Far from being a mere cautionary tale of the Mad person’s tragic fate in the mental “health” systems and the greater society, Ms. Lowe’s account accomplishes the very difficult task of rejecting a stigma which is still ruling and may someday end her life. Perhaps without even realizing it, her story is an example of the proverbial gun which this world aims at the hearts of Mad people – destroy yourself or we will do it for you. In one sense this is a “Sophie’s Choice” because no matter who pulls the trigger, the Mad person will never keep their life. Viewed through the eyes of a woman who, at some level, is probably aware that she’s staging a last-stand rebellion against a world which will not let her live, the former “Choice” means so much more than that. It says, without a shadow of a doubt, that there is nothing worth fighting to live for in this world that turns Mad people into beggars, guinea pigs, clowns, or inmates. Life, in this world, is valuable enough to live for, but not to the bitter end. By making her “Choice”, Ms. Lowe scoops the self-hatred out from inside the recesses of her soul and then flings it back out into the world from where it originated. Sometimes people can’t save their lives and must settle instead for saving their power to leave a scar on the world that’s killing them off.

    Jamie Lowe’s complex and intimate account of her struggle with mental illness and her defiance of sanism speaks the thoughts that many Mad people can’t or are afraid to express. Her contribution to the Mad Pride Movement is truly a blessing.

  • Somebody give this man a Pulitzer! This article is beyond brilliant. To answer the question “can madness save the world”, we need only open our minds and our hearts to the deep and frighteningly honest understanding of life expressed by Mad people druing our extreme states.

  • I’m “boiling over” with anger too and I’m very, very afraid of what will become of us all if this bill becomes law. Not only will Mad people be forced to make a “Sophie’s Choice” between neglect or psychiatric abuse, but the entire democratic process will be severely undermined by the precedent that this mockery of legislative deliberation will set. The only target of pro-force psychiatry who was allowed to testify in one of these hearings was not allowed to mount a formidable protest of this bill. The leaders of both NAMI and MHA have made no attempt to stop the members of these groups who advocate for a pro-force psychiatric system from silencing opposition to this bill from the members who advocate for a pro-choice system. To the best of my knowledge, Mad in America hasn’t been given an opportunity to fight, formidably or otherwise, for a mental health care bill that doesn’t turn us into wards of the state. People are not really citizens when their elected officials can stop them from speaking on their own behalf or appointing somebody else to represent them. A government that enfeebles one segment of the people who create it cannot be trusted to act justly towards anyone else. This consequence will be the worst and final danger of Rep. Murphy’s “Jim Crow” laws for Mad people.

  • Thank you so much for writing this. If I had known these things when I was growing up, my life today would be healthier and more joyful than is. Biological psychiatry is endangering Mad Youth. Somehow, we need to stop it before we lose another generation to suicide, incarceration, and death from the so-called “treatments” administered by clinicians who feel it is at once their privilege, their right, and their duty to exterminate us.

  • Financial “independence” is considered by the neurotypical master class to be the most important, if not the only, barometer of recovery from mental illness. Without jobs and independence from public assistance, Mad people are forced to gain societal acceptance based primarily on who we are rather than on what we can do. Such faith in the tolerance and empathy of our fellow citizens would be a good thing for everybody if we lived in a world that could measure the worth of Mad lives by the quality of our companionship, the style of our creativity, or on our unique ability to live in contradiction to the individualistic, materialistic status quo. These scab jobs in the mental health field will be a persistent and pernicious temptation for Mad people who don’t want to or can’t afford to keep their eyes on the prize and work on building that tolerant, empathetic world.

  • Hey, people. I can understand how my previous comment could be read as a zealous indictment of Mad people’s “well” family members. This was not my intention at all, so I truly do apologize to anyone whom I have offended. I was raised very well by one Mad family member and one “well” family member, so I lay the responsibility for my own victimization at the feet of our public schools and, of course, pro-force psychiatry. Because the Murphy bill is called “The Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act”, and because many of us will be abused more by our “loved ones” than anybody else in our lives, I wrote about the brand of barbarism that exists within abusive families. The sources and manifestations of our trauma are potentially infinite. The variations of human evil and cowardice which must, for the sanctity of human life, be restrained by us wounded mad are uncountable. The ability to destroy life is proportional to the hubris of our imaginations.

  • Herpes! Ha! If I had to choose between herpes and psychiatric “treatment”, I’d gladly take my chances with the herpes. Laws such as these, in which abusive families are granted unchecked legal authority to make their pathological dynamics the de facto law of the land, are going to become silent but deadly forces of evil in this country if Mad people choose not to unite in revolt of them. The inalienable right of individuals to control the territory of their minds and bodies is a human need that is indispensable to our spiritual and psychological vitality. Families of Mad people often spend years violating this right and the “Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act” aims to ensure their continued accruement of the benefits they receive from our status as second-class citizens without having to invest any time or effort in oppressing us. This Act, should it become law, would also make the diagnosis of a “mental illness” and the social enforcement of this diagnosis indistinguishable from the processes that are used to criminalize people for felonies and misdemeanors. Anybody who isn’t sick before being trapped in their family’s web of oppression will qualify for any number of “diagnoses” after they get brainwashed, butchered, and banished from a life outside of the cult that is psychiatry.

  • What manner of forced treatment do I want? The kind that allows me to skin my captors alive as soon as they drop their guard. Pro-force psychiatry is a “battle” that its proponents will lose. This is not the 19th or 20th century. If we go down, we’re going to take our perpetrators down with us.

    Wanna call me “dangerously mentally ill” for my candor and rage? Go ahead, if it makes you feel less threatened by my ability and willingness to, literally, fight for Mad rights. Just don’t expect to use that label in order to keep me chained to a bed and chemically lobotomized with Risperdal. Psychiatrists are NOT above the law. Medical and economic freedoms are guaranteed to every consumer in a capitalist economy and to every citizen in a democracy. A baker can’t force dieters to buy their doughnuts. A hairdresser can’t force models and actors to shave their hair off. A high end department store can’t force environmentalists to buy their fur coats. Mad people, as well, can’t be forced to endure onerous, ineffective, irreversible, and dangerous “medical” procedures.

    The trauma suffered by a victim of pro-force psychiatric treatment or pro-force psychiatric assault is not a “delusion” or a “hypersensitivity” to “necessary medical treatment”. Mental health clinicians are usually guaranteed to succeed in exonerating themselves from public accountability for caregiver abuse on the precept that “mental patients” cannot possibly be traumatized by a hostile environment. All of our problems are either blamed on us or bright-sided as a way we can “contribute” to our own “recovery”. Even in so-called biological psychiatry, the thoughts, choices, and personality traits of the Mad person are always identified as the areas of pathology which necessitate medical intervention. This pseudoscientific theory asserts that our “immaturity” and our “badness” force other people to dehumanize us. A Mad person’s investment in a life of “sanity” is measured by their ability and perceived willingness to subsist on a ration of humanity that shrinks slowly over time. Should we object to this victim-blaming, we’ll be promptly “treated” for our “projections” until we profess our agreement with these lies and behave in harmony with them by punishing ourselves with obedience to our victimizers. The state of our health will never improve to a level that allows us to be validated by society and feel whole within ourselves in a psychiatric system that satisfies the clinician’s desire to police Mad minds, but not the Mad person’s need to heal from trauma.

  • Psychiatry just gets more and more terrifying all the time. I think that we need to remind the public that the medical industry and the former family members of Mad people are the only winners in this inhumane plot to imprison unwanted people in the mental “health” system. Another thing we really should try to accomplish is creating a sort of Underground Railroad for fugitives of pro-force psychiatry. At the rate this country’s going, a growing number of Mad people may have to go off the grid, at least for brief periods of time, in order to retain the small amount of liberty they still have.