Monday, August 10, 2020

Comments by Belinda

Showing 203 of 203 comments.

  • Everyone has there own views of everything. There are many things in the anti psychiatry movement I do not like. If you want to hate me for that, do that. I am very CRITICAL of psychiatry, which is a very big difference. My views are more aligned to those of critical psychiatry, and I doubt you even know what it is.

    To claim I know nothing of the anti psychiatry movement would be a joke, considering I was a member of it and left it. I found no more assistance from it, than I did from the mental health system. And in fact I got abused by many people in it. The fact that it loves abusing people as much as the traditional mental health system, was not something I could accept, and nor do I believe anyone should.

    I have my own personal story and experiences. Everyone else has theirs.

    If you need to hate and denigrate me then do that. But fact is you know nothing about me or my story. Nor do you show any ability to consider anyone else’s viewpoint.

    Ted is not the universal leader of the antipsychiatry movement and has never been elected by them. Yet you claim that HE ALONE determines that it is and what it is not. He claims they are not against all psychiatrist’s. Yet the post I responded to, perhaps you should read it, said that claiming that some psychiatrists were good was underminding the anti psychiatrist movement. So which is it, can the anti psychiatry movement even decide. This is what I came across more than a decade ago. People claim to be it, yet cannot even decide what it is.

    As I stated I was a PAID member of the antipsychiatry movement for MANY years, I did not LEAVE it for no reason. In fact I left for similar reasons as I left the mental health system. Do not claim you know anything about me, when you know nothing at all.

    Perhaps you should do your research on the differences between critical psychiatry and anti psychiatry. You claim to be an expert on them.

  • There is such a thing as Critical Psychiatry. It was started by psychiatrists that do not like the system and see the damage it has done. Equally they also acknowledge that there are people who are in profound states of emotional distress for want of a better way of describing it and that these people need help.

    Anti psychiatry claims that there is no such thing as emotional distress, no one ever needs help and if we just got rid of the whole thing, everything would be ok. Which is simply not true. From the dawn of time there have been people who did require assistance, who could not manage alone. The DSM lists intellectual disability. Are we to say that no such thing exists, that everyone has the same intellectual capacity as everyone else and none of them require support. I know people with profound autism, and they cannot live without 24/7 support. Again that is in the DSM. Equally I know people who have diagnosed themselves with autism, who require no support and have no trouble functioning in society, and claim that autism never disables anyone.

    I do not know that frances has quite reached the level of critical psychiatry but he is heading there. Critical psychiatry does not claim to be and never will claim to be anti psychiatry. It is anti diagnosing normal emotional reactions, ie grief, but it also very much about trying to find ways of supporting people who truly do experience profound states of emotional distress and of course supporting them in ways that assist them to heal and be part of life, rather than destroying them and making them worse. It does this by critically analysing research and seeing what the research evidence says, which is very much what Whitaker does.

  • Could not agree more if I tried. I know a 3 year old diagnosed last month, the SOLE thing the child did, was not share with other children. 3 year olds don’t share, it is not in their nature to know how to share. We send them to preschool to learn that. He has no problems with language or with non verbal communication. Does all age appropriate social behaviours. But quite simply he is acting like a 3 year old, so now he has autism, I guess everyone in the world has autism then!

    One of the hallmarks of autism is that they do not copy or notice other people, they do not read people. Yet the latest is girls are not being diagnosed because they copy to much and their autism, is looking and copying the other girls to fit in, which goes completely against, anything a person with autism is able to do. Parents complaining that when the girls are finally diagnosed in the teenage years, they do not want to go to social skills training and instead just want to play and hang out with their friends, because they are in denial about their autism?!! How does the child have friends if they have autism?

    The other thing I really hate is the parent blaming that is now going on for parents who are on the more severe end of the spectrum. If they just believed in the child as I did the child would not have those problems. But their child never had them to begin with.

    Adults who suddenly discover in their 30’s they have autism, yet no one ever knew anything was wrong, they are working full time, married, raising children, wide circle of friends around them. And they suddenly become expert on the whole spectrum.

    I am well aware of adults who were diagnosed with aspergers when it first came out, who had been diagnosed with over 30 different conditions, changing because they never fit, since they had normal language development, although took things literally, didn’t read people, spoke in an odd manner they were not diagnosed with autism, because they were not rain man. But these were never normal people for want of a better word. They had never functioned, they had never had friends, never coped in the world. Which is completely different to what we see today.

    The diagnosis rate of autism has been SOLELY at the milder end of the spectrum, and each new increase is based on widening that criteria.

  • Thank you Eve, glad to see one psychiatrist has finally come to understand their profession, and it cannot be easy to do what you are doing.

    My first contact with a psychiatrist was 16 years ago. At the time I was told they were committed to getting to know me and offer me therapy. Truth is I did see them every fortnight for an hour for many years. I was diagnosed with PTSD as a result of child abuse. At the time I was homeless, no one considered this relevant to anything. I had been placed on antidepressents by my GP (I’m Australian), 6 months prior to seeing the psychiatrist. At the end of the 90 minute assessment I had the dosage of the anti depressant doubled, to the maximum and was also given an antipsychotic (olazipine) just to make things worse). My weight more than doubled in 3 months. I was placed on disability pension, where I remain today. I was told she used medications sparingly, and only short term, while therapy was beginning. Yet 10 years later I was kicked out, as I was beginning to question the now 5 medications I was on, and why I was now only being seen for 30 minutes every 6 weeks, instead of the hour a week I had been promised and which never occured. No information on the medications I was on, was offered to my GP’s, which they were legally required to do, and I was not given any prescriptions. I was forced literally cold turkey off 5 medications, I tapered as best I could. I did have 3 months supply of the antipsychotic, which did help as it was the most painful to get off.

    No one ever helped me to find long term stable safe housing, no one offered to put in place other supports to help me. At best I was referred to a person who came around to ask if I was taking my medications, which since I was voluntarily on them, was even more stupid to begin with. No one ever talked to each other they didn’t see the need, that would only occur if they thought I was not taking my medications. How anyone could think that what was occurring was therapeutic is beyond me. How do you not even make sure a person has a safe place to sleep that night. Yet our government now has teams of nurses that go and find people on the street, forcibly inject them with long acting antipsychotics to ensure they are getting their medication. People consider that progress, I shake my head in disbelief.

    I am and have been medication free for 5 years, I still have side effects, have never lost the weight, and have still never worked. I never got better, I only got worse and I am yet to see anyone who gets better from the mental health system. I finally found myself stable long term safe housing 2.5 years ago. That was more therapeutic for me than anything else has ever been.

  • I think that assumes that people are going to consider what other countries are doing and that doctors are actually going to have the time to investigate what other countries are doing and how and where drugs are approved, etc. We know the number one consideration of doctors in prescribing any medication is the last drug company to turn up on their door step, what pen they are writing in, etc, which is why the drug companies leave them all of this stuff. Doctors do not at present consider what is best, they do what the drug companies told them. Having to keep up to date with medical research is already something they struggle with, are they really going to have the time to investigate what other countries are doing.

    Equally what does the average person do, quite simply they trust the doctor, they do not go out and do research and question this stuff, they assume doctors know best. How do you pull it all apart. While I would be quite happy to get rid of psychiatric drugs, does not mean they never have a role in other real diseases and conditions, equally does not mean they are not overused in those things as well.

    Also have to question what the word safe means. I do believe that chemotherapy for cancer has been overused at times, and I hate it being used when the person is in the final stages of terminal cancer, when it has no role and quality of life should be the issue. Equally I have had family members go into remission as a result of it, does not mean it was pleasant while undergoing the treatment. Would I consider such side effects appropriate for anything else, no. Although psychiatry does not consider any side effects as bad as they consider the underlying fictional disease a thousand times worse.

    Given the level of off label prescribing that already goes on, I think that really says it all. They already know it is not approved for use, but are happy to prescribe it anyway. I would also ad, that off label prescribing is more and more common throughout the world. I am not from the US, I live in a country with a social health system. The social health system will not fund off label prescriptions, yet the outrage here is that they are not covered, and I know that is happening in most other countries with social health care as well. People believe that off label prescribing is ok, because if it is used for one thing, must be ok for other things as well.

  • While I totally respect what you are saying and trying to do, equally I see someone who cannot comprehend the reality of developmental trauma, and how that impacts on a developing brain, nor how disturbed attachment disorders can really be.

    Young children cannot process trauma the way an adult might. They are trying to work out how they can avoid the next rape, the next bashing or the like. Problem is doing that at a very young age, does not go well. Bruce Perry talks about these children’s brains being incubated in terror. The child as a teenager is walking across the school ground, someone shrugs their shoulders, some 10 feet away, the child runs over and bashes them, completely unprovoked. but for the child, not – they saw someone when they were 2 shrugging their shoulders before they raped or bashed them, now every time someone does it they step in to stop it first. They do not comprehend an evil person doing that. They do not comprehend it happening in one place. Nor do they comprehend that the shrugging of the shoulders probably had nothing to do with it. These kids have hyper vigilance to such an extreme level they are almost having a heart attach, given how high the blood pressure is, with the level of flight or fight response they constantly live in.

    I know families in the UK who have taken in the most profoundly attachment disordered 8 year old imaginable. For the first 3 years, someone had to be actively awake next to him 24/7. for the first 18 months there was no school capable of tolerating him. For a period of 12 months, they had to have paid staff in the house at all times to assist with containing him, when he became so out of control, no one could ever be alone with him. He was not medicated. They were working with therapists trained by Dan Huges in attachment disorders and Bruce Perrry in terms of acute trauma. There was a team around the child. Doesn’t mean it was as simple as loving him, or only short term, and he was 8. Try putting a teenager who is bigger and has more baggage and it is even more problematic. 4 years after placement, in a family trained to support his needs and therapeutic support, the mother is driving him in the car, she realises that she has forgotten to the take the meat out of the freezer for dinner, the next thing she knows the child has undone the seatbelt and is trying to get out of the car. She pulls over, no easy feat on a 6 lane freeway. He cowers saying do not hit me, do not hit me. Finally she says, why would I do that, response, the look you just gave it means you will hit me, that is what my mum used to do. 6 years after being removed from the birth family, 4 years in the most therapeutic family possible and his hypervigilance is still that high. They took him in as a long term foster placement, agreeing to keep him until he was 18, and longer, which occurred. Things improved, but he will always be one incredibly emotionally unstable person, who will always need people around him to care for him. They consider him part of their family, other children consider him as a brother, but love alone is and never was enough, nor was the most therapeutic environment imaginable. He improved out of sight from what he was, but not to the point that people believe is possible.

    Theraputic care in the child protection stems from when love is not enough. We used to have the belief that if we just got them into loving adoptive homes all would be fine. Reality is 99.99% of the population are not capable of caring for most of the most profoundly disturbed children in the system, even with extensive supports in place. Personally I question how anyone does it. These kids brains are incubated in terror they have never known anything else it is not the same as some veteran going to war, which you can understand. People cannot and do not understand their inability to love or form attachments, it is not simply about someone being there for them, even with that it still does not happen. These children can be stabilised and make significant gains in therapeutic environments, but most will have lifelong attachment disorders and always remain on edge. The mental health system, even when it acknowledges trauma is completely unprepared for the level of disturbance these kids show and face.

    I have read the books of the family care foundation and also own their DVD and while I think it is great, it is completely not going to work for someone as profoundly traumatised as most of those exiting the child protection system – and most of that trauma was caused by their original families of origin, not the system itself, although the system hardly helps it. Much of the problem stems from children being left in families in the guise of not over removing children and then by the time they are removed, they are a thousand times more disturbed than they should have been. It is a double edge sword.

    In terms of medications, something as simple as clonidine, a blood pressure medication, which is incredibly safe, can make a world of difference by reducing the fight or flight response inside of them, something antipsychotics and antidepressants do not do.

  • Brilliantly said. Also true that courts and governments decide if children get to be adopted. Children can and do experience love and belonging in foster homes. In Australia many children remain in care as that is the only place they can access trauma informed therapy services and if the foster families take them on permanent care or adoption orders they loose access to that, which is what is holding the child together.

  • I’m in Australia and while all children are required to have full trauma therapeutic assessments done within 6 weeks of entering care along the lines of those done by Bruce Perry, they are also required to have a mental health assessment by a psychiatrist with no training in trauma within 2 weeks of entering care. It is very much the idea, that we need to make sure we do not miss anything!! All kids entering care have to have full medical, dental, eye and other assessments on entering care, and mental health is included in that. Yes the therapeutic trauma stuff is there as well and is now compulsory, but does not override the mental health, and none of the kids are ever given a PTSD diagnosis, even though that is what is should be. They are usually placed on anti-depressants, which are not even approved for use in anyone under the age of 18 and anti-psychotics, again without any evidence to support their use. From my reading of Bruce Perry’s work, ADHD drugs can help to reduce the level of hyper vigilance, and so if any medication is going to help it would be that one, but they are very rarely offered it. While the kids are getting now trauma informed care of good quality, it is all mixed in with so much harmful stuff that you wonder how many of them can truly gain from it. If they are so doped up they cannot cope with anything at all. There is also a push from many places to stop doing much of what is being done and to instead focus on cognitive approaches which are supposedly more evidenced based and of course simply focus on telling the child not to think this or that, when many of them due to poor language and other issues are very delayed in cognitive development anyway. The push is now to focus on improvement of that at the expense of trauma informed care!!

  • I know child protection got involved in JW refusing blood transfusions for their own children, when the child would have died without them. They were court ordered to allow the child to have them. Doctors cannot force someone to have something unless the person is unable to do so. If the person is unconscious, then a blood transfusion would be given. If the person is needing surgery and the surgery would involve a blood transfusion, then they can absolutely refuse it and in turn die as a result of it. What is often done these days is to arrange for them to donate their own blood, to have that kept and use that or to use blood of relatives if that is their choosing. The parents of the child I know who were forced to have the child have one, were thankful for what happened but were tied between wanting to follow their own religion and knowing what was needed for their child. They were glad the decision was taken out of their hands.

    I do not deny that the case in question above was more about quality of life, but again the question is one in which what rights to parents have. No one would say an 8 or 9 year old child can make a fully informed decision, if they even have a basic understanding of what is going on. They do not even know what death is to any real degree, and often believe the person will come back. Children are not property owned by parents. Hence when children cannot make their own decisions, and parents go against general community standards the courts intervene. The same is true for those with disabilities. While we might grant guardianship to someone else, often a parent, that does not give them the right to make all decisions, and they can have the rights they do have removed at any time. Not saying the decision made is right, it is a moral one and not one everyone will agree with.

    I do not disagree with anything you say in relation to mental health. Fact is no one questions the diagnosis as made, regardless of the evidence that is there. Regardless of what one thinks of the DSM, fact is in the vast majority of cases I have seen there is not even evidence presented that the people meet the criteria as written in the DSM. They just say the person has x condition, say schizophrenia, why, because I say so. Compare that to a friends child who was recently diagnosed with autism. I’m well aware that not all autism diagnoses are done this well, but this is the example and a true one. The child was put through a battery of tests, as well the child was observed in the clinic, at home and in child care, on separate occasions, by a paediatrician, psychologist and speech therapist. in all, over 9 visits were had, no top of the testing and each of the professionals, in the assessment report detailed how the child was displaying each of the criteria in each setting, as well as what tests were showing. Yet what I have seen time and time again in mental health is someone says they have this, because I don’t like what they are doing or a family member told me, so it must be true, the person is then locked up and forcibly drugged and worse against their will. While I do not like the DSM, fact is they do not even use it as it is written.

    I have heard of cases where the danger to themselves is that they might embarrass themselves, we all have the ability to do that every day.

    No one would deny a violent offender access to a lawyer, we do at times restrain people while they see lawyers to protect the lawyer, but here the person who declares you unwell, the psychiatrist, with no evidence to back up their claim can also refuse you access to a lawyer and can also refuse you access to your own hearing. Again violent offenders, will be securely restrained, but still have the right to be present at the hearing.

    I also question why we need special hearings, if the person is so acutely psychotic, so acutely violent, it would be obvious to the average person and so why not take them to court and have a court make those decisions.

    of course none of this takes away from the fact that even if they are acutely psychotic and violent, the so called treatment they will be given is not going to help them, but I think you get the idea.

    I know people who hanged themselves in psych wards in the last few years, when I questioned why it was allowed to happen, when for over 30 years all prion cells have been required to be suicide proof, I was told they were not criminals and should not be treated as such. The person was forcibly locked up as she was suicidal, they defend that right, but then defend the right for them to kill themselves while locked up, as they cannot remove all of their freedoms!!

  • Boans that is a child, not an adult. Adults can legally refuse treatment and decide to die, parents do not have the legal right to kill their own children. Adults can make a decision not to have a simple blood transfusion because of religious beliefs, they do not have the right to kill their own children, on the same basis.

    Similarly parents do not have the right to forcibly sterilise their child, if they have a severe disability, a court order must be obtained and that is incredibly hard to get and if many have their ways that will be removed and it will be completely illegal.

    If parents have the legal right to kill their own children, does that mean we allow them to kill them, because they behave badly, because they do not believe anyone else can care for them, etc. Where do the rights of children start and the rights of parents end.

    It should be noted that in the case above the doctors did not get everything they wanted, they wanted radiotherapy as well, but the level of evidence to support it was not high enough in the thoughts of the judge.

  • Truth is you do not even need to ask the kids themselves most of the time, parents are more than willing to tell you the information, including the level of neglect they are responsible for, as most of the time they honestly see nothing wrong with what they are doing.

    Bruce Perry, is a child psychiatrist, who works in childhood trauma and has published some amazing books, he is not anti psychiatry, but definitely critical of it. He likens the DSM to trying to diagnose a computer problem by listening to the sounds it makes!

    His first child psychiatric patient was a 7 year old girl who had been sexually abused by a neighbour and was then found doing the same thing to other children at school. He knew nothing about sexual abuse. He said it was hard to know who was more nervous, the girl or him. He took her into the room, and sat her down and then sat down. She got up, walked across and went and sat on his lap. He thought how cute. Then oh, no. The girl was trying to undo his pants and the like. He immediately got her off, sat her on the floor colouring in, fixed himself up and then coloured in with her for the rest of the session. Immediately afterward he want to get advice from a fully trained psychiatrist, knowing he was out of his depth. Questions, what are the symptoms, not interested in what had occurred, symptoms, not concentrating in class, disrupting, others, etc. Told it sounds like she has ADD, go and look up pharmacological treatments for it and we can talk about it next week. He was shocked. While he knew he knew nothing, he really did not think that Ritalin was quite going to help a child who had been sexually abused and was acting out the behaviour!!!

    He has had kids that were being raised in dog cages literally, how was it found out, by asking the parents. The parents had no concerns about what they were doing, in some cases had intellectual disabilities and did not know any better. No one had bothered to ask how the child was living, or anything about the child, let alone go and see the house and what was happening.

    The mental health system has a complete inability to see anything other than symptoms of what it considers to be brain diseases, yet they still have no idea of what they are or even if they exist. The do not consider people to be human’s, yet then say people need to have human compassion!

  • Success here is termed the number of people who turn up to a mental health clinician. Given the publically funded nature of own health service very easy to know who uses what. The government introduced a policy of GP’s being able to refer people to psychologists, previously the only thing our public health system paid for was medical doctors, medical tests ordered by them and optometrists. Initially it covered up to 18 sessions per year, then it was reduced down to 10, the reason being over 70% of people only accessed one session, which proved how effective they could be!! On the one hand I see hundreds of people going off to psychologists who do not need them, and reducing that is not bad, equally I see people who have gone through really traumatic events and really do need support and are not really being given it.

    The Australian government built a whole heap of youth mental health services, there is no evidence of people getting better, just the numbers of people who attended at least once, many of whom never went back again, and others who would have been better if they never did.

    As you have said it is very easy to be ‘successful’ when you define what success means, and within Australia it has come to mean people who go to see someone, or diagnose themselves, regardless of the outcomes of that supposed treatment. If I thought the clinical trial data was bad, it has been taken to a whole different level.

    Also interesting how common it has now become, it was only 10 years ago, seen as something that 25% of the population would experience in their lifetime, now 25% will experience it every 12 months and everyone will at least once in their lifetime!

    I think what angers me more about the mental health first aid is that it is called that. It is now run by standard first aid groups, like red cross and the like!! If they called it mental health education, or the like I would not like it, but it would at least be a more honest description of what it is, although I guess you would not get as many people doing the course then would you!!

  • FIrst Aid is for general first aid, about what to do before medical help arrives. I see a person in need of assistance, I call emergency services, and it is about what do I do between calling emergency services and emergency services arriving.

    Mental Health First Aid to my understanding was started in my own country of Australia, at least 10 years ago. I am truly sorry it has been taken overseas, although pleased to know it only goes for 7 hours. Our courses continue to go for 20+ hours, over 3-4 days. Our courses teach nothing but the DSM criteria for the conditions and the pharmaceutical treatments for them, because they are chemically imbalances in the brain!! While Australia bands drug companies from advertising directly to the public, the names of medications are mentioned in this course, minus the side effects of course. ECT also often gets a mentioned. The testing is on being able to diagnose the person and know what medications they need. The only useful thing said, although I questioned whether it is of any use is that if you see a person in acute distress, assumed to be acutely psychotic or suicidal you should apparently call emergency services, something the average person would already have done anyway.

    They claim the success of the course is that on average 60 -70% of people who participate in the course, take themselves to the doctor after realising they have anxiety or depression. Yet before the course they were working full time, raising a family, socialising with friends, etc., etc., without issues!!

    The government here will even fund people doing the course and employers training all staff in in, which is not of any use really, because then they wonder why the whole population becomes mentally ill, when we are doing first aid, and then they all suddenly need disability pension and cannot work anymore!

    There is absolutely NOTHING first aid about the course, and the most useful thing to teach people in how to be around people in acute distress is de-escalation training, yet no such thing is taught and it is still not taught to anyone working in our mental health services.

  • The amount of medication used in children, especially those with Autism to control behaviour never ceases to amaze me and it is now the norm. Even heard of peadiatricans given parents a script for Ritalin when the diagnosis is handed over, even when the parent has not had any concerns with behaviour, just his lack of talking and not interacting with others. The parent was told the kid would need to be on it for life. Then the other day I got this:
    Our 6yr old son was prescribed Lovan (Prozac) 20mg today by his pediatrician. His already on 2.5mg of risperdal, 72mg Concerta and 10-20mg of Ritalin in morning. .5 of Risperdal and 10mil of melatonin at night.

    Risperidone is used so often as a self aid it is beyond me. Handed out as though it is candy. Well actually it seems to be seen as safer than candy, and all because no one can be bothered teaching a child HOW to go to sleep. Children need to learn how to settle themselves to sleep, as they are going to wake up during the night and cannot get themselves back to sleep if they do not know how to. They need to be put to bed AWAKE, but these days, we have kids falling asleep on the couch in front of the telly and being lifted to bed, then they wake up in the middle of the night, as everyone does but do not know how to get back to sleep, because their body only knows how to sleep in front of the TV. Equally you have parents who pat the child to sleep, and again, not a problem, providing you intend to sit by the bed all night and pat them back to sleep when they wake up, but it doesn’t happen. Most parents these days know nothing about basic child development and have never babysat, or even touched a baby prior to the one they give birth to, and most do not have extended family around to give them advice or even if they are they dismiss it as not relevant and out of touch with current parenting. Peadiatricans are not giving parents advice about how to teach the child to go to sleep, and even GP’s are handing out Resperidone when parents go complaining about their 18 month old not being able to sleep, saying it will teach the child to sleep.
    The medication does not have the desired effect, they become agitated as a result and all sorts of other problems develop, which are all side effects of the med’s, but never seen that way and then the poor kid just ends up on one med, after another med, after another med and it gets to the point that no one knows what the presenting problem was in the first place. Even when they are offered good therapeutic support, in terms of autism, best practice is speech therapy, occupational therapy and psychology, all three working together, the child is so doped up they have no hope of gaining from any of it, and the parents are so tried from the child still being so agitated and out of control that they are not able to listen to anything anyone says.
    I would estimate that by the age of 10, over 80% of those with a diagnosis of ASD are on some sort of psychotropic medication.
    The fact that 99% of parents of children with autism do not understand the difference between temper tantrums and meltdowns does not help either. They either see everything as a temper tantrum and want to control it all and punish the child, or they excuse everything as a meltdown and then wonder why the child’s behaviour gets more and more out of control. Equally so much of therapy done with children with autism is to make them look normal, so even just standing still and flapping arms, without touching or annoying anyone will result in some cases with the child being pulled to the ground and restrained and then they wonder why the child reacts to them.

  • Been thinking about why they would not release Garth to Jock to work with, they believe that he needs inpatient care and Jock cannot offer that. Reality is there are times when Garth becomes acutely violent, why he ended up back in hospital again and the question is how to contain him at those times, is what I believe is behind all of this. They also believe firmly in biological psychiatry, which the mental health system here agrees completely with.

    One thing that is of interest to me though is why they are still keeping him at Upton House. it is only supposed to be for short stays, my understanding of the mental health system in Victoria is acute inpatient units of which Upton House is one, is only supposed to keep them for up to 60 days, if they are deemed to still need inpatient care after that they are supposed to be transferred to Secure Extended Care Units. I want to understand why they are so obsessed with keeping him in the unit he is in. The system is not going to be much different anywhere, as it is all based on biological psychiatry, but still question why have made no attempt to have him put where their own guidelines state he should be.

  • It is much easier for them to force him to take medication, he is already under an involuntary treatment order and under that they can force any medications onto him at all. They are not required to go back to the tribunal every few weeks to get permission for medication, as they do for ECT. It was also what struck me when I first saw the 7:30 report late last year, how are they saying he needs it because he refuses medication, he has no legal right to refuse medication, the involuntary treatment order takes that right away.

    As for this not being about winning, I think it is about winning, winning an ideological debate that medical psychiatry can cure these conditions, no matter how bad they are, and that we know best. They are going to give in to someone to said on national television that those things were not needed, I just talk to them instead!!

    In terms of the media, have Richard Baker and Nick McKenzie said no? Or have they made too many waves recently and needing to remain quiet for a while?

    In terms of experiments nothing would surprise me. Given that ones that initially prompted Robert Whitakers work in 1998, of removing people from their just like insulin for diabetes, anti psychotics, putting them on LSD and the like to deliberately heighten their psychosis, then I do not think ethics actually ever happens in mental health research.

    What also amazes me is the continuing argument and it was one said at the beginning of the 4 corners program was that ECT was having a come back. Not completely true. In Australia and especially in Victoria, but in other countries, it is decreasing rapidly. It is next to impossible to be forced to have ECT in New Zealand. In 2013, only 66 people were involuntarily given ECT and only 253 in total in the whole country (both voluntary and involuntary) were given ECT.

  • About 5 years ago Channel 10’s The Project, did a story on the Hearing Voices Network. They were going to show stories of people who through this had been able to reduce and in one case even stop medication. It was changed, as they sought advice from Patrick McGorry, and so instead they interviewed Patrick McGorry, talked about the importance of staying on medication for life and for some people, their psychiatrist might approve of them using this group as a form of peer support, but it would be dangerous to do anything without your psychiatrists full support as they are best to advise on what sort of peer support you need, whether you are well enough and far enough along the recovery journey to be able to benefit from it!!! Personally I am still trying to work out how recovery fits into a life long brain disease that you can never recover from!

  • Within Australia, those on forced treatment orders, it is the norm. Within Australia we have a public health system. Only the public system can forcibly treat someone. Only those on very high incomes, over say $100,000 is likely to able to afford full private psychiatric care, but even then the treats are simple, you either agree with what we want or we send you down the road to the local public hospital, which will force it onto you.

    Getting people to question the need for this treatment in the first place is the hard part, as you well know. I think on the whole Australian’s think pretty similarly and do not question the status quo, they believe in the brain disease myth. Difference within the US, there are at least groups, however small and powerless in many cases that really do question it, and who are getting together and trying to do something different. And some things are being set up, to give people other options for getting treatment if they think they need it.

  • Forced drgugging means forced injections every 2 weeks, long acting, no one trusts anyone to take medications. On top of that they also have forced blood tests every 2 weeks, the week in between to make sure they have not conned the person who was supposed to be doing the forced drugging, not to drug them up!!

    Our laws allow people to be bought back and forcibly treated from any state in Australia and even from New Zealand. Mental health treatment laws override all other laws.

    There was a famous true case of Cornelia Rau, a permanent resident, who was held is both prision and immigration detention centres for a period of 10 months, because she refused to tell anyone who she was, to escape the forced drugging. Most ironical of all was that during that period, she told fellow prisioners my real name is not the one I am using here, but if they find out who I am I will be taken back to a psychiatric ward and everyone incarcerated got why she chose prison over that. During that period she was seen as strange and assessed by as many as 10 different psychiatrists, none could find anything wrong with her, perhaps a personality disorder, just very strange behaviour. She had periods of dissociation and refused to talk about her childhood and from what everyone says never has. That says some very deep trauma. Her family finally found out where she was, gave them copies of medical records saying she had escaped a psychiatric ward and was schizophrenic and immediately she was forcibly medicated on that diagnosis, and back in hospital. She now lives under not just forced treatment orders, but also guardianship orders, controlling her every move. I should add, we do not on the whole put people with quite profound intellectual disabilities on guardianship orders here, and even people with the assessed capacity of a 2 year old are rarely placed on guardianship orders, yet we do place those with a so called mental illness on them all the time. Every saw Cornelia’s response to running away and being in prison as a sign of her profound illness, apparently no sane person would choose to be in prison over a hospital, where doctors made them better!! At one stage in immigration detention, she was being hosed down with garden hoses, rather than allowed into showers by the guards, still she refused to tell them who she really was, for fear of what would really happen to her. She was regularly held in solitary confinement. This is the sanitised version of it: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornelia_Rau

  • Two legal cases are already taking place in relation to this case. They were formally issued the papers for being sued by them in December, it could take years before the case is even heard, that is assuming Garth is even still alive by then. There are also court orders which were also lodged in December seeking an injunction to stop the ECT treatments from going ahead, again it is yet to even be heard and no date has even been set for the case to be heard. Again one has to hope that he will even be alive by the time it gets to court. Australia as a whole is not a country in which we just sue people because we do not like things, we expect our laws to protect us, and numerous other cases of mental health negligence have been ruled in the favour of he health system on the basis that they had a treatment resistant mental illness and the service was doing all they could do.

  • The only way I have seen anyone get out of the mental health system in Australia, is to firstly agree to everything they say, agree you have a chemical imbalance and need these drugs, etc, etc. Do that for about 10 years and then begin to access a private psychiatrist to assist in this brain disease you have. They finally release the order, then you have to find your own way of trying to get off the medications, because I’m yet to know of anyone who would assist the persons.

    The average length of forced community treatment orders in Victoria is 20 years, from my understanding the only reason they are not longer is because people die from the so called treatment they are receiving.

  • As a Victorian I want to thank John Read for doing all he can.

    I also want to add some further information that may help others, especially in relation to our laws. Victoria has the most draconian mental health laws in the world, and the new mental health law only came into effect on the 1st of July 2014. It is less than 2 years old.

    Under the old law, psychiatrists could give ANY treatment at all, they deemed appropriate for the first 8 weeks and no appeals or questions were possible. After that 8 weeks they only had to prove that you could not give informed consent, usually on the basis that you refused what they wanted to do, apparently no sane person would ever refuse such treatment, and they could continue to do as they wanted to do. Changes in about 2010 I think required them to provide a treatment plan to the tribunal, but at most the tribunal could ask that they review the treatment plan. I remember a case in 2013, in which the tribunal ordered the review the treatment plan on the basis that the side effect profile was so horrific that it would be kinder for the person to be euthanized than to be kept alive like that. The tribunal still agreed to the forced order!! The chief psychiatrist now has the legal right to override forced treatment decisions, but to date has never done so, as is evidenced in this case. In the previous act, the psychiatrist determined if the person was allowed to attend the hearing, if the person was allowed to have a lawyer or anyone else attend the hearing. Some of those things have been improved, they now have to prove capacity, although as we all know that is such a biased thing. If he needs to be restrained I question why he cannot at least be restrained in the room in which this pathetic hearing is taking place, not that I agree with it anyway, but prisoners are not prevented from going to court on the basis that they are too dangerous, we restrain them instead.

    I actually suspect much more is going on in this case at a political level. Under the old laws psychiatrists could give as much forced ECT for the first 8 weeks as they wanted to and afterwards the same if the person was on a forced order. No one could question ECT. When the new laws were being drafted there were massive fights against requiring consent for ECT and psychiatrists claiming it is in an emergency treatment and can save lives. Victoria has ECT rates at least 10 times higher than anywhere else in Australia and Australia has about the highest rates in the world. At that time it was never given other than on Monday’s and Friday’s. There was a classic true case in NSW in which the law says a person can be given a number of treatments without a tribunal hearing on a emergency basis. The person was admitted on Monday afternoon, the psychiatrist detrmined that ECT was essential to save his life on an emergency basis. But as it is only done on Monday and Friday mornings, it did not happen that day. The tribunal met at the hospital on the Wednesday, but as it was an emergency order they did not need to hear his case. Friday came it was a good Friday a public holiday so no ECT was carried out. Monday came and it was Easter Monday a public holiday, so again no ECT given. On the Wednesday the tribunal again met at the hospital, but his case did not need to go to the hearing, because it was approved on the grounds of it being a life threatening emergency treatment. On the Friday, almost 2 weeks after he was initially admitted he had his first forced lifesaving emergency ECT treatment.

    Success was obtained in the Victorian law to argue that ECT is not given as an emergency treatment and it is not necessary to keep someone alive, it is not CPR!! I would question how someone can be a doctor if they cannot keep someone alive without putting electricity through their brains. Hence they now require a tribunal order in order to give it without consent, although that is hardly a difficult process. But given how regularly it is being given here, given the times of day it is being given, after the hearings, etc., I feel they are trying to use this to get laws changed to say it is used in an emergency, which is crap.

    There were a few parents that questioned the new laws requiring a tribunal order to give it to someone under the age of 18, completely ignoring the fact that mental health laws override all other laws in Australia and parents have no legal rights when it comes to mental health treatment. The psychiatrist determines it all, if the parent does not agree they simply force it onto the child. Having a tribunal order was a step in the right direction. Some tried to say it should not be allowed to be given to certain ages, including those under the age of 12, but psychiatrists convinced them it can save lives in that age group, on the rare cases it is given!!

    No one in Australia questions anything at all. I have fought to get Robert Whitakers books in my local library and a few other local libraries, but the mental health advocacy groups, only advocate for more treatment, not questioning any of it. Most of the time they work on the basis of helping people to understand how ill they are and why they need this treatment.

    I know someone who was forced to take 5 times the maximum recommended dose of Olanzapine. It was only when she almost died by pure chance when outside of a psychiatric hospital, and was taken to a standard emergency department that it was picked up. She was placed in the care of someone training to be a psychiatrist who immediately withdrew her from all medications cold turkey (not great, but essential in this case), her response by then having been on this dosage for years was to fight it as she believed it would make her unwell.

    All official government information here, continues to talk about these diseases being chemical imbalances in the brain and that myth is still believed and still actively promoted. All information inside medication packs, say it is a chemical imbalance in the brain and it corrects the chemical imbalance. Pharmaceutical companies are not allowed to directly advertise to the public, there are positives to that, but equally no one questions the influence they have over the profession. Doctors and other groups are not legally required to declare any conflicts of interest or where they get money from. The peak mental health groups are getting billions of dollars from drug companies, but are not legally required to declare any of it. The top psychiatrists are on the payroll for drug companies, but again are not required to declare any of it.

    I do not know of anyone who believes that Garth is dangerous, they just firmly believe that he is incredibly sick and the doctors are trying their best to fix him, with a disease that is not responding well to treatment, a bit like cancer that doesn’t respond to chemotherapy is how it has been described to me by others. People here accept those with a mental illness, but they also firmly believe that they have a lifelong brain disease, which is proven to be a chemical imbalance in the brain, and which unfortunately we do not always have effective treatments for!!

    I remember reading a submission to a government enquiry by the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists in 2000 in which they described seclusion as an essential treatment modality!!

    In relation to seclusion guidelines state a person must now be given a bucket to toilet in unless it is clinically indicated not to!! Advocates are trying to get toilets put into seclusion rooms!!

  • Does Autism exist, yes, I also work with those with Autism, equally though it is also a condition that is now being extended and extended. Anyone who is shy is now being diagnosed with autism. Does it benefit them, NO. Go to silicone valley, 99% of the adults there would qualify for a diagnosis of autism, do they have it no, do they need it, no. What you see instead are incredibly happy people, doing what they love, surrounded by people who also do what they love and who they have a lot in common with.

    I do not read much of the adults in this article as having autism, and I also do not see any special autism treatments being provided. What has happened instead is that they have been most importantly removed from psychiatric medications, and then given basic human supports, which would have helped anyone with any label. Lets get someone to take them to a doctor to look after physical health problems – common sense really, but not done in the mental health system. Instead they put them on 18 different medications and then wonder why they cannot speak. It is not considered wrong to have an adult they consider correctly diagnosed with the condition wrong to be so doped up that they can’t speak, just if they suddenly decide it is the wrong diagnosis.

    Anything that does not have a blood test or something else to label it is in the DSM, autism does not have a physical diagnosis and given how wide it is now being diagnosed, then one questions what part of it belongs in the DSM.

    There is also a massive growth in children with language problems, due to parents simply not speaking to them. Children today hear on average less than 50% of the words their parents heard as children. In order to learn to speak, one has to hear language. we have parents who put children in front of the TV within days of birth and the babies become dazed by the bright lights and sounds. They don’t cry so parents keep doing it. In order to learn the two and fro of conversation, babies, babble, when they stop, parents speak to them, when the parent stops the baby babbles again. Children learn communication long before they can speak, but they do not learn that stuck in front of TV’s, iPad’s and the like. While a child might learn to speak from listening to the TV they hear language, they do not learn the two and fro of communication, as they do not have a break in between. They often repeat what is said. It takes an incredibly skilled clinician to see the difference between poor child development that good quality parenting advice and speech therapy can assist with and those with true autism who need something completely different. Give them the wrong support and they do not gain. Equally we have hundreds of children with learning disabilities, who again are being labelled as autism, instead of being given the support they really need. No one gains from being given a diagnosis they do not have. The latest fad is to diagnose everyone with autism. Sometimes that is warranted and helps, other times it packs a label on them they do not need. It is OK to be different and OK to need support with some things.

  • Since when was the mental health system designed to be therapeutic? Clearly these people have no concept of the lived experience of those that do access the mental health system. Everyone I have ever communicated with who has experienced both mental health and criminal justice systems will choose the criminal justice system ay day of the week.

    That does not mean the criminal justice system could not be doing a better job, but the attitude that if people got better access to medications, they would be better is not of any use at all, and is usually what makes things worse.

    I have massive problems with solitary conferment, but I fail too see why there is so much push to have it removed from the criminal justice system, yet it is defined as therapeutic treatment when carried out in the mental health system. The mental health system uses solitary conferment more than any other.

    As for why we have increasing numbers that would be because we are labelling everyone and then drugging them up with toxic substances that only make them worse. They blame a lack of treatment for these problems, when in most cases it is the treatment that is causing the problems.

  • The so called ADHD is also in 99% of cases acute hyper vigilance, a symptom of PTSD due to the abuse and trauma they have suffered, and which the child protection system only compounds. But yes, when the med’s do not do what we want and they experience side effects we just add in another chemical cocktail to the mix. The numbers of kids on multiple medications is beyond me.

    The first thing Paediatricians do in most cases when they diagnose young children with Autism is to put them on anti psychotics, some as young as 18 months of age. Many have not even displayed any behavioural problems, they are withdrawn and non responsive, but we place them on anti-psychotics to prevent them developing behavioural problems!! Then we wonder why they appear to become more and more intellectually and cognitively disabled!!

  • Common sense would say it was the drugs and not the illness, depression makes someone not want to get out of bed, they are unable to plan things out, find it hard to even eat, let alone shower or do anything else. Yet when someone plans a murder we then say it was caused by depression??!! It is physiologically impossible for someone to have the symptoms of the so called illness caused depression and to murder someone, because they two are complete opposites of each other.

    I do believe that the guy had a lot of stuff going on for him, but the solution of the so called medical system to not look at what was really happening, to give him medications, which are linked to both homicidal and suicidal behaviour and to keep them a position of authority over so many lives on the basis of confidentiality is beyond me. Not something I will ever understand. The faith in these so called medications is completely beyond me.

  • It never ceases to amaze me as to what qualifies as scientific research anymore. If a child presented this for a school science project they would fail, but these people are paid millions of dollars, have it published and the whole world stands up and listens to what they say.

    Is there actually any criteria for having something published in a medical journal anymore??

  • And despite the fact that children are being drugged at younger and younger ages, literally as soon as they come out of the womb, all that has happened is that rates of depression and everything else has gotten worse. The solution is not to stop and say what is happening when the more we drug and the earlier we drug, the more people get sick and sicker, but instead to just keep doing it earlier and earlier and now we plan on drugging them before they are even conceived, just to make sure they do not have one second even remotely alive without drugs. At the same time the government wonders why we have such huge issues with illicit drugs. When people are taught from even before birth that you cannot live for a second without a drug and the medical profession cannot find one that is a miracle cure for you, people will go and search for one elsewhere.

    Why has it become a criminal offence to feel human emotions??

  • Interesting thing about REAL doctors. While I cannot speak for the US I know within Australia they are having trouble getting anyone to take on psychiatric training, most medical graduates are saying, that they are not sure that all mental illnesses are real and they do not have any treatments that work. They would prefer to work in palliative care, where they can at least alleviate a persons pain in the last few days and weeks of life. They say psychiatry doesn’t do that! All medical students are now required to do compulsory rotations in psychiatric wards during their degree, it only makes them less likely to enter the profession. The same is also happening to nurses. They are all required to do 2 placements in psychiatric wards, and again none of them want to work in it, saying it is not real nursing. The ones that are going into it are the ones we least need in it, as they would not be able to give the most basic compassion to anyone and nor are they capable of even basic listening skills. Having said that real doctors will not speak up against them, they are in more cases than not, too scared to. BUT they are not referring people to the local psych wards, instead doing all they can to refer them to psychologists or even attempting to treat them themselves with medication, as they think they are going to do them less harm. People say it is because the local psych wards are full, but if you talk to GP’s it is a very different story, they don’t refer them, because they do not trust them. They usually have one or two in private practise they will refer to as a last resort, but not the local fully government funded services. I’m not saying I agree with what anyone is doing, and I do not believe in psychiatry in its present form or in fact any form it has existed in. I do however believe that human distress can be incredibly real and profoundly distressing and their are people who truly do want and need help, just at present they do not receive anything at all, other than abuse, which results in brain damage, regardless of which of their arsenal they choose to use.

    And while I would agree that psychiatrists are not practising medicine, fact is governments in every country in the world, believe they are, and in fact give them special pieces of legislation so they can have special privilege’s that no other doctor is given. All other doctors have to get informed consent and/or that of a family member if the person is truly unable to give it, ie, they are unconscious. Or there are court order guardians in place, but in psychiatry no such laws exist. In fact in most places mental health laws over ride guardianship laws, so even if someone has a guardian appointed by a court, they still cannot make mental health treatment decisions for someone!! Why would they need such legislation if what they were doing was so ethical and evidenced based?

  • The illogicalness of so many laws never cease to amaze me, and of course how politician’s of all sorts talk about people. Of course laws are only as good as those that implement them and when they are given free rain to do as they want and interpret them as they see fit, then nothing can change. Can’t have stronger outpatient laws than we already have here, our Community Treatment Orders usually last for 25 years and the only reason they end is because the person has died from side effects of forced treatments!!! We have more people on CTO’s than anywhere else in the world, it has not changed one thing at all about anything, but everyone wants them. It has also not even stopped the revolving door, even though over 99% of CTO’s require forced injections, as one cannot trust them swallowing the pills!! But even then they still do not stay well, and they say it is because they were not taking their meds? How did they not take them, when it was forced up their up arse, did they put a needle in later and pull out what was just forced into their arse? Everyone who is now readmitted to a psych ward is given a blood test and in 99.999% of cases they were fully complaint with medication at the time of admission, but they still cannot accept that they have become unwell for anything other than not taking their meds!! There is no research, even pathetic research, which supports CTO’s, but everywhere wants them, believing it will work,

    The Whitlam administration ended some 40 years, at which time I was only an infant!! I did however study it in depth when I was at university. It never ceases to amaze me how little those that were voting adults at the time know of anything that occurred, but even I still have much to thank for what he achieved, even though every government since has tried to take it away, they have never fully succeeded.

  • boans, I’m in Victoria, and while I do not agree with the 14 year old bit, fact is it is the strongest bit of legislation against ECT in Australia and at present it can be given at any age. In 2008, it was given to a number of 2 year olds in VIC!! Within VIC it is routinely given to adolescents, although hopefully with our new laws that might drop down slowly. We had over 100 teenagers under the age of 18 given it last year, one as young as 11. Those things are not happening in other states, but then again, VIC has ECT given at 1o times the rate of any other state!!

    Of course one cannot forget the true case from NSW. A woman was admitted involuntarily on a Monday afternoon. ECT was approved by the treating psychiatrist as an emergency treatment. On Wednesday the mental health board met at the hospital, but as it was an emergency treatment, they did not need to get their consent for the 12 sessions that were planned. She had of course not had her first treatment yet! On Friday, they could not give it to her, as it was good Friday, as a public holiday. Monday came, and being Easter Monday it was also a public holiday and so the emergency treatment again did not go ahead!! The mental health board again met at the hospital on the Wednesday, but as it was an approved “emergency” treatment, they did not need to give approval for it. On Friday morning, almost 2 weeks after she was admitted and after 2 mental health tribunal hearings, at which approval was not sought, because it was an emergency treatment, she had her first of 12 sessions!!! Still trying to find the emergency in that!

    I’m also struggling to comprehend how they can still be allowing psychosurgery to take place and can in fact lower the age from the present 18 to 16! But within VIC we do about 25 labotomonies or psychosurgery’s every year, and they see that as something to be proud of.

    Forced treatment is justified as a risk to self is viewed as the person might say something they later regret, and so they would be risking their reputation!!!

    What amazes me about Australia is that within the rest of the world I see some consumer groups trying to change things, but within Australia, no such thing, they just endorse the status quo. The one in VIC approves of involuntary ECT without a tribunal order, as it apparently saves lives, and is a very safe and effective treatment, with very few if any side effects and they are only of short term duration anyway!! How on earth can anyone believe that killing of brain cells is harmless and good for someone and does no long term damage!

  • Sinead, ECT can be done on one side of the brain only and in those cases usually has less memory loss. It is also the level of the current used. They can give you very minor shocks to massive shocks. They will claim that in today’s safe treatments, we do not need to strap people down, as they are not shocked enough for that, but in many instances they still do. If people are not supposedly responding as they want, they up the amount electricity being put through the brain, like the up the dosages of drugs given.

    And like anything, everyone will be affected differently. I took Zoloft and never experienced any side effects, that so many others have, yet I took other drugs and experienced the most horrendous side effects possible.

    I consistently had all the side effects dismissed was contantly told how much better I was doing by anyone in contact with me, yet truth was, when I look back, I was loosing functional ability and I have never regained it. I still have long time side effects from medications I voluntary took, and I too at one stage would have stood up, even while having the most horrendous of side effects, because I was led to believe that they were minor in comparison to what things were like before. People say what they believe, people want to believe doctors and do not want to think of the damage that they cause. The other big reality is that many people are in absolutely desperate of situations and would honestly consent to anything at all, and any change is likely to be an improvement, of course what they fail to understand is that any changes that do occur happen because one naturally goes throughs ups and downs in life.

    The other reality is that some people do not want memories and actually wan them wiped out, due to torture they suffered elsewhere, others view any feelings as bad and not being able to feel anything and being permanently numb as a good thing. for the simple fact that no one every taught them to cope with feelings.

    There are and continue to be satisfied customers of labotomies in those places where it is practised and families who continue to rave about the positive outcomes. Families who claim that someone is so much better, when they are so drugged up they cannot walk, let alone feed themselves. Families who do want a zombie, who lies there, does not interact or communicate. It is abuse, but when defined as a mental health treatment, perfectly legal.

  • Thanks for telling the truth about informed consent. Fact is 99.9% of abuses and damage in psychiatry will continue, even without forced treatment orders. No one had to force me to take anything, I did so because I truly believed that I had a chemical imbalance and that these drugs were like insulin for diabetes.

    I would further add, that I am from Australia, labotomonies or psychiatric surgery as it is now named are showing a massive comeback. Even being considered for inclusion in involuntary treatment legislation, since they are considered so effective!! The most ironical thing about it all is that in order to be able to have such a procedure, the person must be so profoundly mentally ill that they are at risk of death without the procedure, ALL other treatments, must have been tried and failed and the icing on the cake, the person must give fully informed consent. How on earth can anyone that is supposedly that profoundly mentally ill possibly give informed consent, let alone how can anyone with the bullshit they are told.

    ECT is also on steady rise here, especially voluntary, but also on an involuntary nature, helped by a recent TV documentary, filming the most humane ECT imaginable and the person saying it saved their lives. From talking to psychiatric nurses, what was shown is not what happens at all, it all depends on how much electricity they put into the person, but of course that was not told. And it was also said to be a life saving treatment. It is effectively given the same status as CPR here, which is even more pathetic. It can be given in an emergency without consent, or a court order, as it can save lives!! Of course ECT is never given as an emergency treatment, it is only given on Monday and Friday mornings and not on public holidays. If a doctor is not capable of keeping someone alive without putting electricity through their brain they should not be allowed to practise medicine!!

  • Brilliantly said. They are and never have been anti anything, but I absolutely love the reference to hitting someone over the head, it is exactly the sort of thing psychiatry would try. After all they claim that frying someone’s brain with electricity is a medical treatment. They further claim that courts should not be allowed to limit its use especially in emergencies!! How anyone ever becomes a doctor and then believes this crap is absolutely beyond me. And they claim where the sick ones!!

  • The other reality is that even if the same brain damage was present, fact remains that at least the rest of the body will still be alive and functioning if they are not on the drugs. The medications/drugs cause damage to every body system, very convient to focus only on one and not the others.

    It also does not suprise me that he is only making some changes. Like Mathew I think it is simply too huge a leap to move to the direction of just how much damage these drugs have caused to people and the damage that they themselves have done over the years they have been practising and all of them would have had some involvement with involuntary treatment as well.

    I also find the concept of informed consent ironical. I do not believe that anyone can give informed consent to take these drugs, as doing so would involve knowing the real side effects, that no disease actually exists, and that their is no evidence that they would do anything for you and would infact only harm and likely kill you. No one would truly give informed consent for such treatment. Rates of forced treatment are decreasing while the rates of prescribing are increasing for the simple fact that people believe they have a brain disease and that these drugs, labelled as medications can fix it. Most people don’t need to be forced. And while I am all for getting rid of forced treatment, fact remains it would do nothing to change the mental health system or the treatments dished out to most people, and nor would it change societies strange views on such things.

  • Fear does not have to mean having a knife held ones throat. To say that a man raping a young child is not traumatic for that child is simply stupid. Sure in child sexual abuse such physical threats are not usually present, but the abuse itself, even if not full on penetration is incredibly traumatising for a victim. The age of the child has a great deal to do with it. As does the relationship with the perpetrator, the response of those around them, etc, etc. Response is incredibly important. Children need to be allowed to believed and protected, they need to have some understanding of what happened and for many young children, that involves just trying to understand why adults do those things with each other, as they don’t eve have a concept of what sex is. The way the court system responds is also crucially important and the idea that children do not need Closed Circuit Television to testify with is beyond me. Children do not belong in court rooms and the sooner that is understood the better.

  • You are so correct in what you have said here. Humans grow when we treat them as humans, and above all else simply love them and let them grow. No one deserves to be treated as psychiatrists treat people. If I treated my dog as psychiatry has treated me I would be charged with a criminal offence and locked in prison. But they do it with full legal backing and then have the nerve to call it “medical treatment”!!!!

    Psychiatry causes as you say 99.9% of the symptoms that people experience, and they sure as hell do not help anyone. The only people I know who claim otherwise are those who have been brainwashed to believe it, and unfortunately it is more and more people every day. They believe that they would get significanlty worse if it was not for those toxic substances they take. They also focus on the one percent of them that has improved, which is what psychiatrists have told them about. They become puppets being pulled on a string by whichever psychiatrists is treating them at the time, and of course each time they get put on a new drug it is going to have magical outcomes, which if they are lucky last for a few weeks, before they are back to where they were before, needing higher and higher dosages and more and more drugs, eventually adding in ECT, locked wards, etc, etc. How so many people can believe in it is beyond me. You do not diagnose a brain disease sitting four feet away from someone with a pen and paper, but that is how all of these conditions are diagnosed. Asking for a real biological test to be done to prove you have it, is taken as a sign that you are iller than they origionally thought!!

  • Not directed to me, but needing to comment anyway. Freud did largely come up with his theories based on pressure, but that also shows just how self centred he was. I certainly know of people who gave up trying to go public with things due to pressure put on them, that did not mean they changed the whole thing and came up with something to support the status quo even more. Freud could very easily have just gone away into the shadows and done his work with clients alone. He was more interested in being the centre of attention and having everyone worhsip him, so when the pressure become too much he changed his whole tack and blamed the victim.

    Incest does and always has existed, and I think it would be niave to say it will never not exist. It is also stupid to say that it does not harm people. In a criminal justice sense there are real issues with charging people and sending them to prison and giving them life long restrictions on the basis of some very old memories, that one cannot prove.

    But research has shown that people do forgot those things. One the best pieces ever done to confirm this was by Williams and Williams. They went back through hospital medical records and interviewed adult women who had been bought to hospital as children because of CONFIRMED sexual assualt. They did not tell them WHY they were being contacted, just that they were doing research on adults who had been hospitalised as children, and what they remembered about it, what had gone on in there lives since, etc. Over half of the women did not remember, or if they did they did not tell the interviewer, BUT they also denied ever having been in hospital and MOST of those that did not remmeber did talk in great detail about domestic voilence and adult rapes they had experienced since. It seemed strange to say that they would be happy to talk about domestic voilence and adult rape, but not childhood abuse, unless of course they really did not remember.

    The people who claim that repressed memories are false have done research showing children movies of disney characters and then after it they ask them questions about something that happened in the start of it, and whether mini mouse of mickey mouse did it. As they did not all get it right they say that repressed memories do not exist. That research might prove that people do not always get the person right, it does not say the crime did not exist.

    Having said that research of that nature has been done with two different groups, those with confirmed histories of sexual abuse and those without. Those with confirmed histories were more likely to accurately remember characters who were voilent or aggressive in movies that those that weren’t. Possibly because that is what they live.

    No ethical therapist should ever be working with someone to recover memories, you simply work with them on the day to day issues they bring to the therapy. Hypnosis is also contradicted with such people. One does not ask a person who has supposedly been voilently attacked to submit to being out of control with someone they don’t know. One of the cornerstones of any ethical therapy with such people is allowing them to maintain control of the therapy process, as they lost that control during the abuse/assulat. Hypnosis takes that control away and makes them vulnerable, which is not conducive to healing. People who are vulnerable are also much more likely to agree with anything being said to them, just to please the person, and try to keep themselves safe. People heal and recover at there own time and rate and need to be supported to do that, not forced to do it on someone else’s timeline.

    As said previously in a criminal justice sense there are issues, but in terms of people deciding to seek therapy or support and moving on for themselves, there is no issue, providing ethical therapists are working with them.

  • If only someone in Australia could have some commen sense to see this. Instead we now not only screen for depression, but anxiety has been added in as well. And of course everyone feels anxious about something at some time in there lives and apparently ALL of it is bad and ALL needs preventive treatment to ensure that it does not go on to become a real disease!!

  • I totally agree in relation to human suffering being rule and the fake science being the problem that has become a quasi religion. But I question whether it is just about force. Can anyone seriously make an informed decision about psychiatric treatment. People assume that if it is performed by doctors, that if it is paid for by governments or via health insurance of any sort it must be an acceptable and evidenced based practise. No health insurance whether government or privately funded funds astrology or homeopathic treatment, that I am aware of anywhere in the world. People are free to use it, but they do so of paying for it themselves.

    Health Insurance, regardless of how it is provided funds insulin and test strips and the like for diabetics. It is believed that insulin treats diabetes and no one questions that. Likewise health insuracne funds these toxic pills labelled as anti everything and people assume on that basis that just like insulin for diabetes being funded it must be evidenced based.

    No one can possibly do all there own research for every medical condition. If one is lying in a hospital bed barely alive after a heart attack, they can hardly do there own research and make a fully informed decision about what treatments to recieve or not to recieve. One does have to trust professionals at some stage.

    And trusting professionals comes in all sorts of areas. Yesterday I had a new stove put in, as the other one had died. I had to trust that an electricion had installed it properly, because I am not an electrican. Yes, i made sure they were a licensed electrician and checked that not via them, but via the licensing register, but after that i do have to trust them. People similarly put there trust in doctors, because the fact is we all get sick at some stage and all require some sort of assistance. We trust that if someone is a licensced doctor they know what they are doing. And yes to some degree we can question those things, but there are times when we can’t. As a society we employ ambulance officers and we assume that they will be able to safely transport someone to hosptial, because we do not see it as appropriate to leave someone to rot and die on the side of the road.

    No one can do everything, we all need help and assistance at some stage in our lives and we have professions to be experts in certain things and to assist us with those things. The problem is that psychiatry has become a profession that is promoted by government as real doctors, they are licensed as doctors and health insurance of any sort funds treatment by them. That is done on the belief that they are treating some real diseases. Problem is no one can make an informed decision to recieve treatment for something that does not exist. Does human suffering exist, sure, but one cannot treat it as though it is a disease.

    When psychaitry is not treated as a medical specility, when it is not funded by health insurance, and not promoted as anything by anyone. Then and only then will people be able to make an informed decision about whether they want to use it or not.

  • Very true Stephen Gillbert, but they would not be doctors if they did not have biological diseases to treat and physical treatments to treat the diseases with!! I think this search for a biological cause is as much about them needing to be seen as real doctors, as it is about believing it. I think many of them do know that nothing will ever be found, but to admit that will admit that they are not real doctors and they will never do that!!

    The fact remains that if there was any biology in madness it would have been found long ago. From the dawn of time they have been chopping open the brains of people who were supposedly mad, and they never found anything. Only when they started loading people full of toxic drugs did they suddenly begin to find things, things that are never found before people are drugged to the eyeballs and changes that occur in line with the dosage and the length of time on the drugs. Yet they still claim the drugs do no damage and instead treat some fictional disese.

  • Brilliantly said Steve.

    No one can ever have what psychiatry labels as a normal brain, and MOST of the changes identified, have bee in people on medications, and it is the medications causing the problems. There has never been aything found in a child with ADHD that was not purely accountable for with medication, take them off the medication or test them for everything under the sun before medication and nothing at all is found.

    Cortisol is not bad. We all need certain levels of it to survive. Stress is an essential part of life, and I for one would not wish my life to never have any in it. Sure in excessive amounts it can become tiring, but there are very simple environmental and natural ways of achieving that, and toxic brain drugs and electricity in the brain are not and never will be some of them.

    Stress is a part of life. I have had more than my share of it. I was raised in a pedophile ring, I know what bad stress is. But to say that I should do away with the day to day stresses of life, that make me human is stupid. If I can’t cope with a bus running 5 minutes late, getting wet when it rains, because I left my umbrulla at home, having to go back to the grocery store because I forgot to buy something, I hardly think some toxic pill that has as its primary side effect, suicidal thoughts and feelings is going to help me.

    Psychiatry cannot even define what it is they are trying to achieve. They say that stress is bad, but life is stress. What do they propose, we euthaise the whole population. And of course if we need to alleviate stress, then getting rid of there barbaric treatments and side effects, the court orders that treat us like criminals for experiencing normal human emotions and labelling us as defective for life on the basis that we cry for 2 weeks after loosing a partner of 50 years is more stressful than the day to day life stresses they say we cannot cope with!!!

    Nothing in psychiatry helps anyone, they do however make the lives of everyone they come into contact with signficantly worse.

  • Thankyou for sharing such a beautiful story and for not forgetting your friend Susan, and for honouring her.

    What I love most I think is that you are able to acknowledge the absues that still go on today. What I hear all the time is that the system is so so so much better. Nothing could be further from the truth, especially in my state of Australia, with the highest rates of forced treatment anywhere in the world. We have over a 1,000 people die in psychiatric care in my state alone each year, of unnatural, unexpected and unexplainable causes. We have no rights to question ECT, or any forced treatment order. The only thing we can question is the label of being mentally ill, but the onus is on us to prove to a panel of psychiatrists, not a court, that we are sane, not for them to prove that we are insane. Very very few people make it out of the system alive, most die on forced orders.

    Yet I keep being told the medications are so much better – which is totally not the case. That ECT is now done in more effective and less harmful ways – no way of putting electricity through someone’s brain that is not harmful. Seclusion is now at a record high here. Standard practise is to strip people naked first. And our seclusion rooms are bare concreted, if we are lucky we are given a bucket to toilet in, but clinical practise guidelines state they are not required to do that if it is not clinically indicated!!!! People are kept there for days and weeks and in some cases months on end. They are NEVER allowed out for one second. No interaction, no nothing, and they call that treatment.

    To some small levels some of the most barbaric things you went through have changed, but for the most part it has not. What has changed is the laws that very tightly regulate who is allowed in, friends and family must in most circumstances be supervised at all times and are only allowed in visitor rooms, not the wards themselves. Families are now being actively discouraged from visiting, being told it makes the condition worse and does not allow the person to begin to take responsibility for their own illness. Wanting to do the right thing, most families stop visiting, in many cases making things even worse. Very very few people have the courage to speak up and question what is happening. The vast majority believe that doctor knows best, that these are evidence based medications for medical conditions, etc, etc. I unfortunatley was one of those people at one period of time. I look back now and wonder how I could ever have been so naive, but it does not suprise me given what we are told, and how much society knows it. And of course even more so in the country that I live in, with what we hear and are told.

  • I still have not quite worked out what biomarkers they are actually looking for. In order to find a biomarker for something that something actually has to exist. They have found biomarkers for other things, because they knew exactly what it was they were trying to find a biomarker for. Ie, they knew exactly what Down Syndrome was and so could very easily find a biomarker and what happens in the condition.

    Since they still cannot agree on what any of these bogus disorders are, how do they propose to find biomarkers for it. I mean the ones they are currently searching for will be totally invalidated come the 1st of July, when the DSM 5 comes out with new criteria for everything. The disorders they are seeeking biomarkers for at present, will not exist on the 1st of July. They might have some bogus condition with the same name, but the criteria for being diagnosed with it, will have changed, so people will have to be relabled with something totally different in many cases, so the biomarkers will surely have also changed!???

    Still trying to work out how these idiots made it out of kindergarten, let alone became doctors and scientists with university degrees!!

  • I wish the six weeks of treatment with a family doctor was a joke, but it is actually something I see all the time. MOST of the “Peer Support” Workers, employed by our hospitals, even our long term hosptial services are people who have had nothing more than a 6 week prescription of prozac from a GP. Apparently they know exactly what these people are going through and can be good peer support workers. Of course these are people who had no problem with the drugs they were prescribed, and have no problem with forced treatment orders, they are after all there to protect people from themselves, and if they had just taken the pills for the few weeks that the GP put them on to begin with, they would not be in the position they are in today!! While I cannot ever see the day when the system will employ people who do not worship the ground they walk on, they could at least employ people who have had some experience of the system, as someone who has spent a few weeks on some low dose of prozac does not know what it is like to be chained in concrete cells, sedated for days on end, with drugs that make you want to die, more than anything else in the world. I have met one or two who say, it was horrible at the time, and they need to find nicer ways of doing things, but it was for my own good. I don’t like them, but at least they acknowledge the brutality of it all, and say there must be better ways of doing things.

    I guess that is also why I have no respect for any of this stuff, it has been taken over by a system here, that is hell bent on making sure recovery and peer support, is what they define it as, ie, taking pills for life, and people who have taken a pill to tell that to you!!

    We then have the others who say, these laws are important, they save us from crazy people, but I was not crazy and I never hurt anyone and never would, why was I locked up overnight, and even worse locked up with them!! Or my GP prescribed me these pills and did not tell me how bad the side effects would be. How are they allowed to do that. The reality is that people do see a human rights abuse in the fact that a family doctor did not tell them of the side effects of medications to the level that they would not have taken them. Then there are times when doctors have not done a bad job of listing side effects, but the person was so convinced they would cure them that they took them and of course they did no such thing, and the side effects were much worse than they imagined, even if the doctor had tried to tell them. But they do consider themselves having survived the system, and they do consider what they went through as abusive. None of them can comprehend the gravity of the situation that people locked up face on a daily basis, and the level of the coctails they are prescribed.

  • Before I was on disability I was on unemployment benefits, which I have the ability to get in my country. But that required me to be doing some form of voluntary work or training or the like – for up to 8 hours per week, spread over the whole week. Hardly arduous on anyone. It’s less than 2 hours per day!!

    One person I know who was profoundly traumatised and affected by her lengthy forced hosptialisation and forced ECT, did that in an animal shelter, just petting cats!!! She felt dogs would be too much for her, as she would need to walk them, etc. She started with cats, just giving them some loving attention for a few hours a week, and if anything it was the best thing she could ever have done. She did that alone for 8 months, before slowly beginning to do some other things in the shelter, and then going back to study, finding work, etc. It took a number of years, she had a safety net of unemployment benefits, PROVIDING she did her mutual obligation, which was her 8 hours a week of voluntary work, and she was given an exemption from looking for work for the time being.

    I was told I was being placed on disability, which is pretty much how it happens here, although if I really wanted to, I could have fought it, which would have been difficult and time consuming, and not what I needed.

  • Jonah, thankyou for such a truthful and accurate description. Like you I am very much against the insaniety defence or any defence. I find it more so when one considers that forced treatment laws are wrong. People argue against forced treatment and in the same sentence question why they were ever committed of a crime as they were insane at the time. If one is so insane as to not know what they were doing, then I would figure that they are very good grounds for forced treatment.

    It is also the conditions it happens for. As someone who dissocaited with excessively high levels, to the point of being diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder, the one thing that is seen as central in the therapy of such people is them accepting full responsiblity for ALL aspects of themselves. It is not considered acceptable from most of those in that section to allow someone to say, but another part of me did it. One cannot move on and heal if they continue to not take responsiblity for there actions. We had to always be responsible for what every bit of us did.

    And of course where is the PROOF that one was insane. Where is the proof that one was simply hearing a voice telling them to do something. Where is the proof that the drug made them do it. Where is the proof that an underlying brain disaes made them do it.

    I would never say there is never a case of dimished capacity, but its abuse is beyond me. We now have a situation in Australia were 98% of people bought before courts are on the finding of guilt, immediatley given psychiatric evaluations, and then they discover they have depression!! Gees if I had just found out that I was going to spend time in prision I think I might be a bit sad too!! But no it is always used as a way to get a lighter sentence. We even have people who have murdered people after searching them out, claim they were provocated into doing it, as they really just wanted to talk, even though a order was in place preventing them from being within 500 metres of them, but there defence is accepted, and naturally with the woman being dead, she can’t argue anything.

  • Francesa I could not agree more in relation to what you say about disability benefits.

    I am on them and continue to be on them. For me I seriously believe they have not helped, but have in fact hindered my ability to move on. Before them I was having some casual work and thriving. I had some relationships with people at work, and they were important, since I had no family. I wouldn’t call them friends, but they were moving in that direction.

    I have begged and pleaded for assistance to look for work in Australia to move me off disablity and every time I am assessed as being in denail about the severity of my disability and illness. And of course since I am not on medication, then I cannot access assistance as I am a risk to others for my noncomplaince. That is the case even with letters from a doctor supporting me, and proof of being very successsfully medication free for over 15 months!!

    I will find a way off them eventually, but one finds it ironical when the system works so hard to keep me on them.

  • David I hear what you say, except even in countries with social health care systems and social security for everyone who doesn’t want to work, they still have massively rising rates of mental illness, and of acute and life long disability.

    What one needs to do is to find new ways of supporting those in acute emotional distress. Our current medical models don’t work. From Australia what I see is a continuing pulling down of communities and society, and an increasing reliance on the medical model to cure everything. Feel upset about anything at all, you immediatley have a life long brain disease.

    What I see in Australia is people striving and searching for that label, and believing that if they ever do anything at all, they will become infinaltey worse.

    I remember very well a link to a newspaper article about new research about how really highly successful people, who did experience ongoing and contiuing acute psychosis, (aka, scizophrenia). The best medicine was found to be no medication, no doctors, no therapy, no disability, but instead very high presssure jobs. With a high pressure job they were not able to spend time listening to the voices and simply had to focus on the task at hand. The same is true for all conditions. Doing nothing and hiding oneself away from the world, does not help those who are depressed, living life is the best medicine one can have.

    When we talk about the need for these things for those in distress, we are denying the very real research that shows that these benefits actually make people sicker and don’t allow them to get better. Being active and a part of life is the best medicine anyone can have. Yet so many are still encouraging victim hood by telling people it is bad for them, to ever work again, or they at least need to have made a full recovery first, etc. I see those arguments even made by commentators on here.

    I would just like someone to tell me excatly what it is that I need to do to have recovered?? I’m told its an individual process and decision, yet when I say I have recovered, I’m told I’m in denial!!!

  • Everything is much more effective when it is still on patent and billions of dollars can be made with it. I think the amazing thing is that people are stupid enough to believe it!!! ALL the evidence says that long acting injections have worse side effects, and are less tolerated! But of course if you create some very creative studies you can find whatever you want, and even if you don’t find it, doesn’t mean you can’t tell it to people!!

  • For the recond McGorry does not actaully recommend low dose, but one would not know that by how he talks. What he recommends is the MAXIMUM recommended dose of the TGA/FDA. Which in Victoria’s system of forced drugging is low in comparison to the average doses that people are put on. But they are not low dose in comparison to what is used in other countries, or the general understanding of it, around the world. It is Victoria’s defintion of low dose, which is maximum recommended dose. And when that does not work, one just add’s another medication to the mix, the more the merrier!!!

  • McGorry does not believe one should wait if the person is psychotic. In fact in those cases, one should be forced onto neurolptics the second they show a real sign of psychosis.

    I think you need to look at what McGorry actaully means by Ultra High Risk. The definition is beyond me and any sane person.

    If one has ever been having a conversation with someone and wanted to say something, but could not find the exact word they wanted to say, they do instead come up with another word, so the other person can fully understand what they wanted to say, and the message was very clear, but that not knowing the exact word at the exact time – which EVERYONE has experienced, is seen as a person being at Ultra High Risk of Psychosis. Young people who experience depression, and that is everyone who sits formal final year of high school exams that are the sole determing factor of entering furhter education, are also at Ultra High Risk. Put simply being human is being at Ultra High Risk. The fact that anyone could even consider placing such people on antipsychotics is beyond me.

    McGorry has publically expressed his disgust at the APA refusing to accept Psychosis Risk Syndrome in the DSM 5 and has stated that Australia will not be held back in treating these people who are in urgent need of treatment, just because the rest of the world is willing to allow them to become chronically unwell.

    The sad part is the Australian government has now embarked on compulsory mental health screening of 3 year old children and are publically funding massive psychosis risk treatment programs throughout the country. And yes, the PRIMARY treatment being offered in these centres is drugs, drugs and more drugs. Children as young as 12 are being put on them, while still living at home with parents and the parents are not even being told. The kids are discouraged from telling the parents, saying they are not likely to understand about the brain disease that you are experiencing!!

    McGorry has been critised in the media for wanting to drug up kids who show no signs of psychosis, ie those that HE classifies as Ultra High Risk. He has now reluctantly agreed that drugging them does not reduce the risk!!

    PLEASE understand that Ultra High Risk is not someone who is displaying ANY symptoms of psychosis. It is simply a young person, who according to McGorry MIGHT in the future, and the fact is anyone might in the future.

    McGorry does not and never will suggust waiting before iniating Neuroleptic treatment in those who have actually EVER shown any real symptoms of psychosis. Those people need to be drugged up for LIFE, no questions asked. He truly believes that these drugs have antipsychotic properties in them. But then again when you are paid a couple of million a year in drug company money personally and more for your research efforts, is it any wonder that you say such things. And one cannot forget that they must be the lastest edition to the drugs on the market, as the newer ones apparently have significantly less side effects, are tolerted at very high levels, even in very high doses, and are also more effective overall!!!

    McGorry is Australia’s Torrey and it so nice to see that someone else can see him for that!!! Most of the population here worships the ground he walks on, and politicans and media are the worst examples of it.

    Ultra High Risk is not psychotic, and NEVER will be.

  • This is common sense really. The belief if CTO’s is the same belief about people needing to be kept on med’s for life. The belief is that if people take med’s they will stay as well as they can be.

    In order for that to be the case, one would first need to have evidence that the medications actually do what they say they do, and to date we have no such evidence. A six week medical trail is not and never will be evidence that these drugs keep people well. Even the FDA and every other drug regulation agency in the world has said there is no evidence of the pills keeping people well.

    If the drugs don’t keep people well, then why on earth would forcing them to take them, keep them well??? That is the part that really does not add up to me.

    The WHOLE reason people believe in these laws is because they believe the drugs will keep people well, but we all know that is not the case.

    Forcing someone to have some form of psychological therapy is not going to work either. One cannot force someone to participate in CBT. Sure you can force them to sit in the room, but that is about the end of it. You cannot force a person to listen to you, if they choose to ignore you while next to you, they will. You cannot force them to speak to you, well not without torturing them. And if mental health treatment is now going to involve CIA torture tactics, then I think they are going to an even lower level.

    Force does not work, never has, and never will. Having said that it is also unfortunately becoming a largely unneeded situation anyway, as the fact is compliance is now at an all time high, even in places with no or minimal forced treatment. The community today believes more than ever in fictional brain diseases and pills that cure them. With that belief at an all time high, complaince is also at an all time high.

    There was a study I read, which I will try to find, that says that one would have to forcibly treat some 25,000 people to prevent ONE murder, hardly an ethical situation.

    The fact remains though that while the community believes in fictional brain diseases and so called pills to cure it, then they will support CTO’s, as the arguments for them, are that no sane person would ever refuse such treatment. Problem with that is that no sane person would ever consent to non evidenced based treatment and when they don’t have the evidence to say the drugs work, then how can someone consent to taking them. CTO’s are medical experiments, as there is NO evidence that the pills they are required to take will keep them well for a period of a year, the length of the orders. How can they be required to participate in medical experimentation?? And even if one wanted to say they needed some other treatment, again, provide the evidence that 12 months of such treatment is likely to keep them well?

    Why would forcing people to participate in medical experimentation keep them well?? How can a CTO be anything else, when there is no evidence that the drugs they are forced to take keep will keep them well, as a six week medical trail is not proof that they will work for 12 months.

  • Marian what you have said about the not understanding the experiences causing distress is so true. While I have not experienced hallucinations, my emotional reactions to things, labelled as symptoms of mental illness, where distressing because I did not understand them.

    I would also say that the systems response to the symptoms we are displaying is also a massive problem. One is usually locked up, heavily drugged on medications that cause horrendous side effects, are told they have a life long brain disease and will never recover. They are also forbidden from talking about what is happening for them, and instead told they are just useless thoughts and beliefs and need to be ignored. These things cause as much if not more distress than the most distressing of symptoms can ever cause.

    That does not mean that many of these symptoms cannot be incredibly terrifying, but I know for myself, that when I was able to view my experiences as normal reactions to horrifying experiences I coped much better than when I thought I had an out of control life long brain disease. When I was able to communicate the thoughts and feelings I was experiencing and not just have them pushed aside, I also coped significantly better and was able to move past them. I could not move past them, when I was told I just had to think differently or was drugged up so I could not express them.

  • larmac, I feel for you in relation to loosing your son, but am also incredibly amazed that a parent can have the common sense to see that the system killed him, and not some fictional underlying brain disease, which is so what the system tries to make out. Unfortunately your son is one of way too many who die at the hands of a system that is supposedly set up to protect us. Like many of us, he voluntarily entered a system he believed was going to help and heal him, and that instead tortured and ultimately killed him. I often wonder how it was that I made it out of the system alive. I do know that I was only half the person I was when I entered and in many ways I felt as though I had been killed.

  • Brilliantly said Emily. MIA keeps me sane, and while I do at times try to live a life away from it, when the world seems insane around me, when I hear too much crap in the media about these life saving pills, I come back here for some saniety!!!

  • Well said Ana.

    Antidepressents have you have so clearly said “don’t work”. They are not approved for use in children and adolescents, not just because they cause such a high rate of suicide, but because even drug companies can’t create carefully designed studies, to even have ONE study that shows people get better.

    It is well known that if they were required to prove that on average these drugs work for adults, NONE of them would be on the market. They are only approved for short term use and only in profoundly depressed people, the ONLY thing they test for. Even then they have to put EVERYONE on placebo for a month first to wipe out those that naturally recover. One does not put everyone with cancer on placebo before trialling a new chemotherapy agent, to see which ones naturally recover, so why do it with depression. They do it because if they did not the placebo rate would be too high and there would be absolutely no chance of getting any drug approved for anything.

    One cannot design a medication to treat something that does not exist. One actually has to know what you want the medication to do, before you can desgin a substance to treat it. In order to develop antibiotics one first had to know what bacteria was and to put it into a test tube, then and only then could they put in different substances to see which killed it. One cannot put feeling sad in a test tube, one cannot even define what feeling happy means. Even in clinical trials, they did not even use patient self reports to decide if the drugs were working or not. They decided that patient self reports were not reliable. How do they diagnose them – on the basis of patient self reports, but they will not use the same self reports to decide if the drugs work??

    Everyone, even when feeling really down experiences some things that are not totally bad, that could be as simple as eating a nice meal or the like. Sure one requires much more when they are really down, but they still experience somethings that are not totally bad. Antidepresents numb the person. When a person is really down feeling number is not all bad, BUT it comes at a cost, feeling numb means you cannot experience a few things, like a nice meal or a funny movie, as good as they are now numb. They numbness, numbs, and that is everything, including the good things. Therefore the person gets more depressed, the dosage is increased, and the cycle starts again. Then they add on another drug, and another one, then they fry the brain with electricity, cut it open and remove parts of it, and it keeps going on and on and on. People don’t get better, they get worse, as no one has actaully looked at WHY they were feeling down to begin with!!

    Anyone that has read Whitakers work, or actually knows the history of treatment for depression, knows that it used to be an incredibly rare condition. In 1980 the standard advice was to do nothing. They had found that antidepressents did not help, psychotherapy did not help, ECT did not help, long term. The best thing one could do is to push through it, because sitting at home doing nothing only gave them things to dwell on and made them worse. MOST people had a single episode for a few months and recovered totaly without treatment to never ever relapse again. Then media advertising came in and made out prozac to be something that not only made a person not sad, but it made them better than well. They made out depression as a brain disease, that needed life long medication. Suddenly for the first time in history we had people who became disabled for life by this condition and the best treatments in the world were not helping. They were so bad, they could no longer work and now require disability benefits for life, they are now incurable. How can a drug that makes people better than well, create a situation in which for the first time in history we have people become permanetly disabled by feeling sad??

    And these people want to put more people on these drugs, at earlier intervals and for life. How is that going to help anyone. They cannot even provide ONE scienfitic study that says the drugs keep people well. ALL the research is on a 6 week medical trials. If you want people on them for life, need to provide at least one study of a year or longer duration. Problem is ALL such studies have shown people get worse, not better. But they still promote it.

    And yes what about all the other side effects. It was the other side effects that made me want to give up on life. I was not that bad, but I was told by doctors that my life was not worth living if I was not on them. When the side effects, every single one them became too overwhelming then I decided I couldn’t cope. The drug itself did not do that, the piles of side effects, and being told life would be even worse without them, made me want to give up. But they are not testing for that. I would add, I know of thousands of people who felt the way I did. But they want to believe that the drug itself does it, not other things going on and above all else they want to believe that these drugs can cure a fictional brain disease. As others have said, this test will increase the numbers on the drugs, and the rate of sucide, not lower it.

  • The primary reason for the rising rates lies in nothing more than overdiagnosis. The vast majority of that diagnosis has been in Aspergers for people who are simply shy and nothing else. Since when has shyness been a brain disease. Well everything is to psychiatry – I’m waiting for breathing to become a brain disease, but when it comes to the community at large nothing suprises me. Any child who throws a temper tamptrum due to never having been told no at any time in there life is labelled as Autistic. Children who have pacifiers stuck in there mouths, as parents never take them from them, are labelled as autistic when there speech is delayed, as they can’t speak they have plastic permanently in there mouths. Teenagers who move from remote communities to massive inner city schools and are overwhelmed on the first day are diagnosed as Autistic. Children who have no consistent caregiving and have major attachment issues are labelled as Autistic. The average child now experiences less than one hour a day of quality time with there parents. The average family dog gets more. Then we wonder they children have problems. Everything is Autism today.

    I agree fully that SSRI’s and a million other things all contribute to a child’s development. Of course if a mother is taking SSRI’s they are usually doped up and hence less attentive to the child to begin with and while not abusive, children in that situation require more nurturing contact with parents. Much easier to believe that Autism is a real brain disease than to admit that we are now labelling everything as Autism, much the same as we label any sad feeling as depression.

    Lets also not forget the research that shows that parents who massage there babies every day have significantly lower levels of Autism, even when other risk factors are accounted for, and for those that are diagnosed, they show much better prospects for living fuller and healthier lives, and not being as locked into the behaviour. But this does not fit with brain disease theories, so we can’t let is have any role.

  • It is not that psychiatrists do not know the risks, they simply CHOOSE to ignore them. They believe that the fictional brain disease they diagnose us with are far more dangerous and life threatening than any medication could ever be for anyone, including a devloping baby. They choose to ignore the black box suicide risk of SSRI’s for children and adolescents. It is not about not knowing it is about not caring and believing as they are educated to believe that the so called underlying brain disease is much more damagaging. It is the only way they can forcibly medicate people who are dying from the drug side effects.

  • Why do I continue to get so cynical when I read stuff like this:

    “Evidence-based practices include assertive community treatment (ACT), cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for psychosis, cognitive remediation, family psychoeducation, illness self-management training, social skills training, and supported employment. Promising practices include cognitive adaptive therapy, CBT for posttraumatic stress disorder, first-episode psychosis intervention, healthy lifestyle interventions, integrated treatment for co-occurring disorders, interventions targeting older individuals, peer support services, physical disease management, prodromal stage intervention, social cognition training, supported education, and supported housing.”

    ACT – forced drugging in the community!!
    CBT for Psychosis – telling someone the voices are not real and they should not listen to them. First and foremost you are never ever allowed to talk about the voices, you are banned from doing it. It is about telling you that wanting to talk about them or listening to them is wrong.
    Cognitive Remediation – teaching someone how to think about everything. Sorry, but thoughts are based on experiences and thinking should not be a crime. Acting on some thoughts sure is a crime. But the thoughts themselves are not. Where does it begin and end
    Family Psychoeducation – educating the family about the importance of the person taking medication every day for the rest of there lives for a fictional brain disease
    Illness self management training – teaching the individual about the importance of taking medication every day for the rest of there lives for a fictional brain disease.
    Social skills training – teaching them to say hello and goodbye. Perhaps if they were not so doped up on medication they would be able to participate in social activities. No evidence that they luck skills, evidence that they loose them due to being so doped up they can barely move or the brain damage the drugs cause them. No training is going to be of any real use in those situations. But of course they learn to be polite to nurses and doctors when being forcibly drugged, so they consider that a positive!!
    Supported Employment – they are so defective with this fictional brain disease that we can’t possibly give them a job in the real world, so we give them a job in a sheltered workshop and we expect them to get down on there hands and knees and say thankyou, and yes on average they get paid 50 cents an hour!!

    I wont continue with the analysis of the treatments and interventions showing promise, the so called evidenced ones are bad enough. It is the same old crap and shows just how much the psychiatric profession has hyjacked the word recovery or psychosocial and taken it on in a very different way to what we want and above all need. None of these things help people to heel, they all keep people as eternal victims of a system that is hell bent on killing them. What they do is to keep them more managable while in the system, and means they need less forced treatment orders as they can get complaince in a million other ways.

  • Do people take cocaine and heronine and other illicit drugs, sure they do. BUT they do not do so with taxpayer dollars, fully funded by the government and prescribed by a doctor as a treatment for a fictional condition. People take those drugs knowing full well the dangers involved in taking them. We have classes in schools to teach children about the dangers of such drugs. Yet in the same schools we teach them about the so called benefits of taking prescribed drugs to treat fictional diseases.

    Do I know people who agree to drugs on the basis that it will prevent forced treatment sure. Did I at one stage do so myself, sure. But only for as long as was necessary to get the relevent authorities away from me, so that I could truly decide to remove myself from them – which had to be without any assistance from anyone at all, and that is not an easy task for anyone. I also know of many people who have failed trying to do what I did and who slipped back into a full on psychotic state, if that is the right word to use.

    The simple fact is no one makes an informed decision to take any form of psychotropic drug, because they are handed out by the government, funded by the government and endorsed by the government, under the guise of medical treatment. No one hands out cocaine as a form of medical treatment, or heroine as form of medical treatment. In fact we go to huge lengths to stop people from taking them, have sniffer dogs and other technologies to stop people from bringing them into the country. People are also charged with not only taking them, but especially with selling and distributing them to others. Some countries even sentence such people to death, and all countries put people in prision for many many years. Why are doctors not put in prison for suggesting people take a substance no better than them?? Sure one could argue that they should be put in prison for forcing someone to take them, but a court of law makes that decision, so they are not doing it in isolation. And how was it that you were able to make a decision that taking these drugs was so bad for you, when you consider it perfectly acceptable for them to be deemed medical treatments for 99.9% of the population??

    I am a person who generally follows the advice of doctors. I am not a doctor and I do need to respect the training that they have. There are many medical conditions I have for which I take medication, which not only helps, but substantially improves my quality of life. Difference is they are diagnosed with real diagnositic tests. They are not something I can diagnose myself or decide for myself whether I do or do not need medication. Like billions of other people I was led to believe that psychiatrists were real doctors who had real medical treatments. My concern is over them pretending to be someone they are not. It is also my concern that taxes are used to poision and kill BILLIONS of people in my own country. Sure we have a few thousand on forced orders, and a few thousand who might take them for fear of forced orders. But as I stated above that does not account for 99.9% of people in ANY country, including Europe who very very very willingly take these drugs, under the guise of medication, paid for by the government and prescribed by doctors. The same doctors do not prescibe cocaine or heroine and nor would they ever suggest a person took such a substance. If you believe that doctors should be prescribing cocaine and heroine and we should stop trying to restrict there use and instead promote them, the same as we do these psychotropic drugs, then fine, but as I said, I do not. I believe that psychotropic medications, which are drugs should be no more legal than cocaine or heroine. It is beyond me how anyone can endorse the use of ANY such drug.

    I have made my points very clear. People are entitled to there own views, but I will never ever respect anyone who endorses the promotion and sale of any drug, and I believe that psychotropic medications are drugs. I will not be responding or reading anything in relation to this thread anymore.

  • I have no inention of lowing myself to Torrey or anyone else’s standards. I detest him, like I detest others, but I have morals and dont plan on lowering myself, by trying to somehow justify it as saying but they started it. Two wrongs do not make a right. Does that mean that if someone starts shooting a gun at anyone, then I can do the same thing, because they started it?? They have no science to back up what they state, which we have. They are offended, because we now have the science that Whitaker has put together so wonderfully, and which I have personally gone and read many of the research for.

  • I have STATED VERY PUBLICALLY AND ON THIS THREAD that I opposed to FORCED TREATMENT LAWS of ALL varieties. Please stop saying that I am saying something I am not saying.

    My beliefs is that NO ONE makes an informed decision to take these drugs for the simple fact that they can’t. No one can make an informed decision about something, when they are lied to about having a fictional brain disease and that these drugs treat that brain disease. The chemical imbalance myth has largely been debunked, but we still have genetic biological brain diseases. It is the drugs, marketed as medications that I am opposed to, for EVERYONE, not just the elderly or the children. I do not know of any adult that has seriously made a fully informed decision, because they have ALL done so on the basis of seriously believing they have a defective brain. MOST people on this site who have used these drugs did so very willingly at first, believing that they would help them. I suggest you all go back and read Laura’s story, she was not forced to take these drugs, she did so on the belief that she had a brain disease. Her parents supported that by believing the same thing.

    Repealing AOT laws would do very very little, as very very few people are affected by them. I live in Victoria, Australia, and we have the highest rates of forced treatment anywhere in the world, yet they are only less than one percent of our treatment population. I do not know of anyone who takes drugs on the threat of forced orders. EVERYONE I know takes these drugs, because they believe they have a bogus brain disease and that these drugs are treating the brain disease. AOT laws in the US are almost non existant. I am not saying they are right, anymore than any form of forced treatment laws are right. What I am saying is that at present 1 in 5 people in the US is on one of these drugs, and less than one in a million is being forced via law to take them. Sure children might be one of every 200 of those, sure you might have one in a thousand taking them due to fear of forced treatment, but that is only going to touch the surface of those on these drugs.

    I was forced to take these drugs as a child. I know full well what the affects of them are. I have also suffered the affects of forced treatment orders that are allowed in my state in my country on the basis of refusing treatment. One does not have to prove you are a danger to self or others, in our laws no sane person would ever refuse these drugs and so refusing entitles one to a forced order, that is decided by a panel of psychiatrists, not a judge in a court of law. And no we do not get legal representation.

    My real concern is based on the TRILLIONS of people worldwide who willingly take these drugs on the belief that they have a genetic brain disease and that these drugs treat that condition better than insulin for diabetes.

    I HATE and DETEST forced treatment orders, children being forced to take them, the elderly being forced to take them. But I cannot deny the facts that they are only the tip of the iceberg in terms of who is taking them, and I don’t want to help a few, I want to get these drugs out of existence. NO ONE can make an informed decision to take these drugs, EVER, and I cannot comprehend anyone who says they choose to take them, so whats the problem. They don’t choose, they do so on the basis of what doctors have told them, and we are all bought up to believe that doctors are right.

    I would also add that in recent years I have come across multiple adolescents, 15, 16 and 17 who have choosen to take these drugs, whose parents tried to stop them for years from taking them and who believe they should have the right to take such medications for medical conditions they have. I even know of 12 year olds who are angry that parents can decide not to allow them to take these medications!! WHY because they believe what they hear from doctors and the media, and that is in a country that does not allow direct to consumer advertising of these drugs. What they get are the media saying that feeling sad is a brain disease and that we have medications to fix it, just go and see a GP and you will never feel sad ever again.

    Until we change a public perception that we have medications which we all know kill you eventually, to cure a fictional brain disease then no real dent will be made in the billions of people taking these drugs, as the fact is most are fully consenting adults, many of whom are members of this site. And how do we determine when adolescents or the elderly can consnet to taking these drugs, if you support them on the basis of consent.

    Civil and human rights victories are won on the basis of PROVING that what is being done is wrong. Not on the basis of someone saying I don’t like this. FACT: AOT laws are passed and endorsed on the basis that BILLIONS of people WILLINGLY take these drugs and cannot comprehend anyone who won’t.

    Australia has forcibly given blood transfusions to children of Jevoh’s Witnesses via court orders when parents would not consent. The court determined that while adults had a right to kill themselves they did not have a right to kill there children. Parents were offered the chance to give the child their own blood or that of other relatives, so it was a not a strangers, but it made no difference to them. I can say that in ALL cases bar one the parents have thanked us, saying they wanted to do the right thing, but religion would not allow it. This way they could keep the religion and still do the right thing by the child!!! They would want the laws any other way.

    Adults with cognitive impairments are forced to recieve medical treatment on the basis that they are not able to make informed decisions about the treatment offered to them, in the same way as parents act as decision makers for children. There are definately cases of adults labelled as mentally ill, that are under guardianship orders on the basis that they are not able to make informed decisions. While I do feel that guardianship orders are issued too freely in all countries, the fact remains a person in a coma cannot make an informed decision and loved ones do need to step in and make decisions for them, if they do not have advanced health directives in place, which most people do not. This is not about an advanced mental health directive, this is about an advanced directive for everything, what do you want your family to do if you have a spinal injury, stroke, heart attack or the like?? You cannot make a decision on those things while lying unconcious on the side of a road, or do you not want ambulances to take you to hosptial and to instead leave you there to rot, as you have not given informed consent for it?? Fact is people are given forced treatment, in many many instances without even knowing it. Any ambulance that picks up an unconcious person is forcibly treating them and detaining them, since they did not agree to the ambulance removing them from the side of the road and transporting them to hospital!! Perahps they made an informed decision to lie on the side of the road to rot. While there is no doubt that forced mental health treatment is a totally different kettle of fish, not least because they are not treating any real condition or disease or have any real medical treatments for it, fact is people are forcibly treated at times, every day of the year in ALL countries in the world.

  • Totally agree with Richard, the reasons people smoke is solely about the side effects of the drugs they are forced to take. We also know for instance that it is much higher among those on antipsychotics, than not on them. We also know that nicotine stops much the drug going to the brain and people can need to be on massively reduced doses when not smoking. Blood tests can show how much of the drug is being absorbed by the body and those levels will be dramatically different if the person is not smoking. But try to get a psychiatrist to lower the medication because they quit. Many take it up, solely to deal with side effects. I know one person who stopped when A psychiatrist finally agreed to dramatically lower the dose of the drug that she was on. She was bascially weaned off cigarettes at the same time as the drug.

    I’m in Australia and we have the largest restrictions anywhere in the world on where people can and can’t smoke. One can no longer smoke within 10 metres of a bus stop, within 10 metres of the grounds of the hospital, you cannot smoke in a car that has children under the age of 18 in it, and yes parents are fined thousands of dollars if they are found to be smoking in their own car with their own children. We now have plain labelled packaging on all types of smokes, so labels from the companies are not allowed (they fought it all the way to the full bench of our high court and lost). The only thing on packets is massive pictures of body parts half dead from smoking related causes, and large details of the damage caused. Small print on the top of the packets allows one to know what brand and type of smoke it is. ALL types are taxed at excessively high rates and it is increasing all the time. Those I know who smoke do so by largely not eating, not paying rent, etc. They choose to smoke than having a place to live, food to eat, etc. And they do so in the vast majority of cases to deal with medication side effects. ALL mental health services have massive quit programs in place they are lucky to have anyone successfully quit. People are going to huge lengths to get to cigarettes while in hospital, including offering all sorts of sexual favours on the basis of a smoke. Forced treatment orders are largely not needed they just refuse to give them there smokes if they do not comply, and they will do anything at all. And the simple fact is they NEED the smokes to deal with side effects. Getting rid of the drugs they force on people, which they call medications is the first step, but dramatically lowering the doses would also be a massive step in the right direction and would result in many people able to at least reduce the levels they are smoking at.

  • I NEVER once said that I agreed with forced psychiatry. If someone is saying I have then I challenge them to quote the relevent part.

    What I said was that the WHOLE reson we have it is because 99.9% of the population believes in the chemical imbalance brain disease model and that we have drugs to fix it.

    99.9% of the population is willing to go to the deninist. 99.9% of the population is willing to fly. And for the record MILLIONS of people throughout the world get treatment from psychiatrists for these fears and are prescribed drugs for them. Something I totally disagree with. I think there are much more appropriate ways of dealing with fears.

    Those on this site are the rarity and if someone believes that thinking psychiatry is crazy is the norm, then I would challenge them to provide proof of that. We are all labelled as those crazy antipsychiatry people. And yeah I proud to be antipsyhiatry, but that hardly makes me crazy. It is actually one of the first signs of saneness that exists, as no sane person could truly believe in psychiatry.

    What has been threatening to mainstream psychaitry and the population as a whole about Robert Whitaker is that he does not get into the question of forced treatment, instead he challenges the beliefs on which it is all based, and that hurts them more than anything, as without the brain disease model, they have no grounds for doing what they do.

    Judges do not grant orders to lock people just because the law says they can. They do so, because they seriously believe that these people have brain diseases, that we have medications more effective than insulin for diabetes for treating it, and that no sane person would ever refuse it. Many many judges have had sons and daughters locked up, and requested that they be locked up, because they need treatment and we all know that these drugs treat the disese!! Parents making these requests are not doing so on the basis of being abusive, or bad or mean, they do so on the basis of love as they seriously want the best for there loved ones, and what the doctor says they agree to. They simply worship the ground doctors walk on and 99.9% of the population do that.

    Mindfreedom has existed for over 25 years with very little success of anything at all. Massive changes and questions have occured since Anatomy of an Epidemic was published, but it never once questioned forced treatment, rather it simply questions the false assumptions of brain disease on which it is published. Psychaitrists are beginning to question what they are doing, something they did not do, when people were jumping up and down saying this is wrong I have rights. They simply labelled them insane. Robert Whitaker has changed that as they now have no grounds on which to label us insane.

    I don’t blame anyone for wanting to get rid of forced treatment, I just am not willing to waste huge amounts of my time on it, as to me the best way to get rid of it, is to simply challenge the grounds on which it is based which is the brain disease model. Robert Whitaker is changing the way psychiatrists practice and is challenging them to think outside the square, and that to me is going to be much more effective than me jumping up and down saying I don’t like what you did to me. People have been doing that for decades with no changes, changes have taken place with Anatomy was published, and some psychiatrists have even joined this site and are really challegning themselves in how they practise and what they believe, and for me personally those are the things that are going to have the best long term outcomes.

    The Hearing Voices Movement is having more sway here and more people are joining it, and for me that is something to actively encourage. I don’t think it goes far enough, but anything is better than nothing. It also is not based on saying don’t do this, it is about saying people can and do recover, and do so without med’s. Prove recovery and people will have less need for forced orders. The whole ground on which they are based is that people cannot get better and need these drugs for life. Show them that people can get better and not be what they fear of psychotic madmen and we begin to get them to think of something else.

    The simple fact is that believing in psychiattry is not just a small offshoot of society, as it is with other things, it is in fact the norm. When something is the norm, then laws are allowed for it. When something is abnormal, then laws do not exist for it. People do not believe in something solely because of laws, they do so because of what they are told about it, and in terms of psychiatry they are told a bogus story about brain diseases and life saving medications.

  • While I agree that coercion is bad and wrong for me it is not going to solve half the problems we have. I know of thousands of people who very very willingly take treatments, in fact they complain when said psychiatrist will not up the dose of medication and search high and low for one that will. They actively search out doctors who will prescribe higher and higher doses, larger drug coctails, and give them more ECT. No one searches out that stuff on the basis of forced treatment laws.

    I know all about forced treatments and yes I became a complaint patient on the basis that it was my fastest way out. BUT I never ASKED for more, never searched for psychiatrists outside the system to give me higher doses, I simply did what I had to do to get out. I am however a rarity.

    I’m in Australia and we have a public or government funded health system. We also have a very large private health system. Over 50% of the population has private health insurance. Forced treatment is only in public health facilites and ALL private psychiatric hospitals must have unlocked doors at all times, the same as any standard hospital facility. The growth in the private psychiatric system is huge, especially in regards to inpatient admissions. There are whole facebook and other internet groups set up to discuss how to get a doctor to prescribe higher doses, and more drug coctails. People don’t join those groups to get out of a forced treatment order, they do so because they seriously believe that they have a brain disease and that these drugs, which they call medications will save them. To them the higher the dosage the more chance it has of working. If it is not working, then to them, you simply need a higher dose, or add another drug to the coctail they are already on.

    I hate forced treatment laws and would love to see them removed, but I do not for one second believe it would do anything at all to change the current status quo of psychiatry. The whole world believes in the brain disease and that we have drugs to treat these disorders. People are actively going to see GP’s and then psychiatrists to get these drugs, and people are angry when GP’s will not prescribe drugs and instead refer them to a psychologist or the like, as we all know that these drugs cure these diseases just like insulin for diabetes.

  • Psychotherapy has done more harm to me, than medications, which I had horrible side effects from, some of which I have not recovered from, even after having been off them for over a year. Most of the time drugs numbed me to oblivion. The lasting horrors of psychotherapy will live with me for life.

    I have been with some of the top therapists of ALL types of therapy, you name it I experienced it, and NONE of them helped me and all of them harmed me. The latest catch cry of CBT solving everything is as useless as the drugs. When I was told I could get over being raised in a pedophile ring, by simply thinking as the therapist told me, I really knew it was not going to work. But hey it was my thoughts that were causing the problem, and what caused those thoughts is totally irrelevant. I just need to think what the therapist tells me to think, because there thoughts are right!!! Then you get the psychoanlyists who insist on you lying on a couch and telling all your problems, which they interpret as resistence. Be on a bus that has an accident and end up in hosptial, it is your resisting therapy, you unconciously arranged the bus crash as you wanted to avoid therapy and getting better!!! But of course when I don’t get better from these therapies, it is all me and not the therapies, or the therapists providing the therapy.

    Many countries do not have these restrictions from therapy, yet there is no evidence that people are getting better in our countries!!!

  • Another great post and a very accurate one at that. I remember sitting in a psychology lecture on twin stuides years ago and questioning this raised together, means everything is genetic, to be told, it has to, it can’t possibly be anything else, as the environment is always the same.

    It simply did not add up for me, as I had two friends who were identical twins, and while they were raised together, there were way too many differences in there environments to say they were the same. They were in different classes at school for one. Even if in the same class, one would be sitting in one seat, another in another seat. They lived with a severly disabled sibling. The one with the bedroom right near that sibling had more impact from that sibling. And while the parents did at one stage change the rooms over regularly for that reason, they felt it was the wrong thing to do long term. And these are just the most logical ones. One could go on and on about all the small tiny differences that occured in there lives, even though they were reared in the same house by the same parents.

  • I think one of the assumptions being made here is the only reason people will commit suicide is if they are on these drugs. Fact is that is not the case. I personally know of 15 young people who have killed themsleves, NONE of them were on ANY sort of psychotropic medication. I also know of a child psychiatrist who did not prescribe medications, as they felt that therapy was better. But after loosing 6 clients in one year, she started prescribing them to some, with parents well informed of the side effects, told to monitor the child more, more regular appointments, etc, etc. She has lost no client since.

    Sure these drugs do raise the chances of suicide, but that risk is in the scheme of things, very very minor. At most less than 5% of people taking these drugs would be at risk of such a thing. What happens for the other 95% who have no such issues. 95% will be shown to have no risks, take the drugs and many will still kill themselves. People have been told then via a DNA test that they are now 100% safe to take and everyone will believe that.

    This company is doing this, because they believe totally that these drugs save lives and that we need to actively promote and encourage there use. They do acknowledge that a very small percentage of people react to them. So for them it is quite simple, we can remove that very very small percent of people from them, and then actively promote and encourage the use of these drugs as a first line treatment for everyone else, without any questions at all, as they make people better than well.

    Problem is there is NO evidence that these drugs work any better than placebo. Better off just giving everyone a suger pill, than shoving toxic substances down there throats. The aim of this company is to get the other 95% of the population who do not react to them, onto these drugs, but there is no evidence at all that that will reduce the suicide toll, if anything it will increase it, becasue a pill cannot stop people from wanting to die. Unless you address the underlying reasons why someone wants to die, nothing will change. A drug cannot do that, despite what this company might want to believe. There WHOLE purpose of developing this test is to get MORE people onto these drugs, not less. Simple really, just take a really small percentage off them, which is estimated to be less than 2% and then we can put everyone else on them, and convince them via DNA tests that they are 100% effective.

    I cannot see how this test will do anything to really reduce the numbers of people them. 99% of people will be given a test and then told by a doctor that we now know for 100% certainty that they are safe for them to take. Hence everyone will take them. Sure the other 1% or so might be directed to talk therapy first, but for that small percentage, it really is not going to make any difference at all. If anything it will increase complaince and the length of time people take the drugs. Doctors always tell people who complain of side effects it is a part of your illness getting worse, not the medication. Now they have done a DNA test which siad it was safe for them to take. Hence they have even more reason to increase th dosage, write multidrug coctails and the like. Has anyone considered what the multidrug coctails do when they all interact with each other.

    Are suicide rates and rates of depression increasing, sure they are, because we have a society convinced that these are brain diseases that can be very effectively treated with a pill. Sure we have a very small percentage of people who have killed themsleves while on the drug, but most people show no such issues. No problem taking a very small percentage of people off the drugs, when we can get the rest of the population on higher doses and multidrug coctails, thanks to DNA tests, that supposedly prove they are safe to take.

    NO ONE is depressed for no reason, no one commits suicide for no reason, until people are willing to address those reasons, nothing will change. Convincing the population that 99% of people will not be adversly affected by something is going to increase its use, not decrease, from my way of looking at things, while they continue to believe that these are brain diseases and that we have drugs to treat it.

  • John I totally agree. If anything this test will only encourage even more use. And it will give psychiatry what they have always wanted, a biological test. Now they can it simply and have a justification for putting people on toxic coctails that do absolutely nothing other than destoy lives.

    I was never and nor are most people ever suicidal or homicial on these and other drugs. We are also never ever helped by them. Instead I lost over 15 years of my life in drug induced fogg, which is the whole purpose of these drugs to simply sedate someone. I still experienced many other horrible side effects and especailly withdrawl effects.

    These tests may help to save one in a million from dying and I’m not saying that is bad, but it is not going to do anything at all to help the billions of people whose lives are destroyed by these drugs, it is not going to do anything to reduce the growing levels of disabiltiy caused by these drugs, etc. What it will do is to promote the use of these drugs even more than is already happening, by saying we now have biological proof they are safe and effective and that you will respond to them!!

    When people are spending thousands of dollars on such tests they are not going to be able to afford other treatments, or in my case our government would not fund other treatments, when a simple DNA test can give them the drug to cure them!!

    I believe wholeheartedly psychaitrists will love the test, it will simply legitimise the cult they are the leaders of.

  • What happened with Heroin was that they simply found another drug to replace it. SSRI’s have already largely been replaced by SNRI’s and they now claim they are 100% safe and not related to suicidality!! Of course they always have the triclics or the ones before that. And very very easy to just create some other wonder pill, look how easy it was to market Prozac.

    While the community believes that feeling said is a brain disease, and that we have medications to cure it, they will keep taking these drugs. This test could well do the absolute opposite, people will be even more convinced it is safe and effective and take it even more readily. Afterall, we now have genetic tests to support its use.

    Problem is one cannot develop a drug to cure something that does not exist. In order to develop antibiotics one first had to put bacteria into a test tube, and then find a substance to kill it. One cannot and nor will they ever be able to put feeling sad into a test tube. Spending billions of dollars trying to promote the use of these drugs by claiming there are genetic evidence to prove they are not toxic to some people, is not going to help people to face the real issues, instead it will simply encouarge a much more widespread use.

    I also believe that are many many more things than simply genetics that predict how someone will respond to said medications. The level of depression they feel would be the first on my list. Suicidality is not something one can measure it is a very personal experience, despite what many may believe. And there will never ever be a drug that can cure it. I also do not believe that suicide and depression are related, and I am not alone in that. David Webbs work details that in much more detail. He was acutely suicidal and had numerous very seious attempts, he was never depressed though.

  • Richard, from my experience that is already happening. People here are routinely told that only SSRI’s are a suicide risk that SNRI’s are not only a more superior medication, but also pose no suicide risk!! They are also told that antipsychotics will improve the drugs antidepressent response, which is how they get people hocked on them as well!!!

  • I’m in Australia and given our medical system I just cannot see that happening. First and foremost no such test would ever be allowed to be advertised here, just like no one medication can be advertised here.

    We have no legal right to know the person blood transfusions have come from. We do know that all dontated blood has basic tests done on it, but that is public knowledge, not something one has to ask for. We also know that people are voluntarily asked to dislcose other information, but most of that is not tested for. What we do know is that no one on any form of psychotropic medication is prevented from dontating blood, and one would have to guess that those coctails are being passed onto many unsuspecting people. No country would be willing to remove a potential 10% of blood donors on the basis of them being on psychotropic medications.

    I also don’t believe that they really care about the suicide factor enough to actually offer the test, let alone actively encourage and support its use.

    It also does not answer the question of what a doctor is supposed to do with someone while awaiting the results of such a test. It will at a minimum take a few days for the results to come back. That is assuming the person even goes to the clinic to have the blood withdrawn immediately. What happens in those few days – doctors will be sued for not doing anything, which is why they are so happy to prescribe them so early now, so they can’t be sued for not doing anything. Do you seriously believe that people are going to be happy to be told that sorry, nothing I can do, have to do a few blood tests first, you will need to the collection centre to have the blood withdrawn – which is exactly what happens here with ALL blood samples taken in the community, and the results will be forwarded to me in a few days time. You really need to give them at least a week to be sure, so I can see you next week and we can discuss then what we should do – just don’t kill yourself between now and then??

    We are always required to allow at least a week for results to come back on any test ordered by any doctor in the community, after we have had the test done. There is no way at all doctors will wait a week before putting someone on these drugs. It would be way, way, way too risky to do so.

    I would also add that doctors really do not care about being sue, it is the medical insurers who care, but they just as concerned, if not more concerned about being sued for not doing something. The vast majority of them sued in terms of mental health are for not doing things early enough. Now you propose to ask them to do absolutely nothing for EVERYONE for AT LEAST a WEEK.

    I personally do not believe I will ever see every doctor never prescribe any form of antidepressent until someone has had the required blood tests and the results have come back in. If anything I can imagine doctors being struck off the medical board for not intervening. No medical board is going to kick them off because they decided to treat while awaiting the outcome of the test results. What happens in that period of time.

    I will also add, that to my knowledge how blood tests are done in Australia is not to my knowledge any different to anywhere else in the world. Even in hospitals they take time for them to come back. No one will ever consider such tests are life threateningly urgent and so they will be placed in line with everything else. Do you seriously believe that you will be able to convince doctors and the public that no one should be placed on any medications ever without the results of these tests being known, even if it means a week or more of awaiting those results. What do you want to be done during that period of time, or do we just ask them not to kill themselves??

    I hate these drugs and do not believe they help anyone, but a test alone is going to do nothing, when nothing else is offered by the system, and the only thing a person has is to be told to wait until the results come back and then what, sorry can’t take them you might be adversly affected by them, nothing I can do.

    Most people if offered something else, will not keep taking them, as the side effects are so horrible. They keep taking them, as they have nothing else. Money does not grow on trees, asking for the health system to fund this, means nothing else is funded, and so it becomes even harder to get support of any meaning.

  • While I cannot and do not wish to speak for Stephen or anyone else, I have come across this myself. At least once a month I come across someone who cannot understand why THEY are being treated this way, but they always say “I understand why the system is there, for those crazy people who are at risk to themselves or others, but I’m not one of them”.

    People believe totally that the system is there to protect them from these crazy people. They believe that psychiatrists are nice and caring people and any force is done as a last resort and only when absolutely neccessary for the safety of someone. They also believe that those who recieve the force deserve it. I did for a long time and I am now incredibly ashamed of it. But I also know it was indoctrinated into me. Like I believed that if I was a complaint patient and communicated with them about what I was thinking and feeling they could work with me to make me better. I tried for YEARS to be a good patient. It didn’t work. Eventuall I had to face reality. And reality as I see it today is that even if someone is so acutely ill as to be voilent and out of control, does that mean that voilence is the right way to respond to it. Treat people with respect and they will have a much better chance of responding with respect back again. Treat people how you wish to be treated. Something I gained from Daniel Macklers Healing Homes DVD when a therapist said they largely just sit with people who are acutely psychotic and listen to anything they say, no questioning, no telling them they are crazy, just being there. Reason they gave: “I think that if I was in that state that is how I would want to be treated”. If I was in that state I would not want to be manhandled to the floor, drugged and locked in a concrete cell, chained to bed in my own urine and feaces, sort of ironcial that anyone can seriously believe that is being nice and theraputic to someone!! Mass murders are allowed to live in better conditions!!!

    Put simply I believed, I think in part because I needed to believe that these people were recievnig medical treatments in the most theraputic way possible with the least amount of force, and that everything was done with their best interests at heart. It took a great deal of sole searching to really know that was not the case, and to really believe just how harmful and toxic the system was. I wanted to believe that they could help me, as much as I wanted to believe that these people deserved to be treated this way. Of course I was also very much lead to believe that their verbal recollections of their experiences are largely part of their psychosis and not real. I now know oherwise. If anything they are only tell half the story as they are so numbed by the drugs and ECT that they can barely tell the truth.

    I now wonder what if anything has changed in psychiatry over the decades. We said that these people needed to be chained and kept in dungens for their own and others safety. Is what we do now really any different? We said that any treatments they described as torturess, were for normal people, but not for those with diseased brains or blood plasma, do we not do the same now. Restricting the right of psychiatrists to do these things is deying people access to evidenced based medical treatments that only they can understand. Do we not do the same now. Any sane person would consent to all and any of these treatments, including spinning chairs, burning, drowning therapy, etc. and the same is said today. Are the side of these drugs really any less toxic and the behavioural interventions used really any less abusive, than much of what was done in the past. Anesethics and muscle relaxants in ECT way well have made it less traumatic at the time of the treatment, but it has also resulted in them using more electricity and subsequently causing more long term and permanent damage to the brain? Is it really any better to do that, and is that not traumatising in and of itself.

    Facing reality about the truth of the mental health system, which really is a cult is an incredibly difficult thing and it still amazes me that Whitaker as an outsider was able to do so. It also never amazes me that so many in it and not able to do so. But that is the power or cults. You believe what you have to, to survive. And who could believe that a whole medical profession, legalised by so called civil and human rights based societies could legally endorse and encourage such practises. How is it that students studying in these professions are not only able to watch people being treated this way, but to actually treat people that way themselves. I have seen some of the most compassionate and supportive medical nurses, enter psychiatry and become mean and vindictive within a matter of months, believing that everything they now did was theraputically necessary and good for people!! One cannot enter another ward in a hospital they work in and see people being treated this way and not try and find a reason for it. The reason they are given from people they respect is that it is theraputic and they need it. It is way too hard to believe otherwise, so they don’t. The same is true for anyone who starts out as a complaint patient. Much easier to blame the patients and there treatment resistent brain diseases than to acknowledge that what we do is harmful. And of course why would a medical and nursing profession endorse such practises, along with legal systems, etc. They need to believ and so they do.

  • Primal Fear Response is not an indisputable fact. If it was, it would be accepted by all. It is YOUR belief, and nothing else, and does as much harm to people as psychaitry does. Pscyhologists are great at making out that they are the good guys, because they do not dish out toxic medications. My experience and that of most people I know was the psychologists were the most evil and hurtful group. You name the therapy I have experienced it. At least the drugs psychiatrists prescribed, just numbed me to oblivion, they could not cause irrepreable psychological damage. My body can and is recovering from the brain damaging touture of the drugs dished out to me as medications. But I for one do not believe I will ever recover from the decades of torture dished out to me by psychologists, in any of their flash theories. Everyone of them, claimed that the therapies I had used in the past were harmful, but there’s was good and would cure me. You name it I experienced it, and dispute your wish to claim they are helpful for everyone, fact is they are not.

    Your pet theory MIGHT help SOME people, but to claim as you do that you can cure every single bit of emotional distress in a matter of weeks, with your pet therapy, shows just how niave you are. Humans are complex are we are allowed to be complex. Some of us are quite happy being complex and quite happy having periods of sadness. But of course you have money to make on telling people that feeling sad ever is bad and you can CURE us in a few short weeks. Someone dies, don’t worry, you can cure them. Someone diagnosed with incurrable cancer, don’t worry you can cure them. Someone raped and tortured to ways you cannot even comprehend, don’t worry you can cure them. Someone has their whole family murdered in front of them, don’t worry you can cure tham. And you can do so in a matter of weeks and with the exact same treatment for all of them. But of course it is my primal fear that causes me not to believe what you say. I’ll live quite happily with my primal fear and face reality about lifes difficulties.

  • I really respect where you are coming from, but I don’t trust it, and I would never ever trust doctors. They know very well the side effects, but have ALWAYS, and continue to this day to tell me they are incredibly rare, that sucide has been taken way out of perspective, and that less than one in a million people experience any side effects. Of course it also depends on doctors offering the blood test.

    The DSM already requires ALL possible medical and environmental causes to be ruled out before diagnosing any of these conditions, yet no one has ever been offered any tests previously. Doctors do not do blood tests presently to ensure that nutritional and toxin levels are normal and that no other disease exists, before handing out drugs. I know of a woman who recently died from a brain tumor, which was found 7 years after she took herself to the doctor, in relation to signs of it. Instead she was given forced ECT, forced medication, forced hospitalisation and the like. A simple brain scan would have saved her life, as it could very easily have been removed, it started in a non important area of the brain, that was very easy to get to. Blood tests would also have shown up something being amiss. But doctors don’t do any of that stuff now, why would they bother doing a test in relation to side effects, when they barely believe in them to begin with. On top of that, how long will it take for the results of those tests to come back and what is the doctor going to do in the meantime. At presnt they drug them at the earliest opportunity. And I believe that even if they offered the test, they would still dish out the prescription first, give you a test slip to go and have the blood test and ask you to come back in a week with the results, but the person could already be dead, after a week on the drugs. I do not believe for one second that a doctor would wait for the results to come back and I also cannot see for one second why they would see these are results that need to be done urgently. Nothing is urgent about minising the risks of these drugs, and I for one would never believe that it would be.

    It is standard practice in human anesethics to have blood tests first to ensure that the best anesethic is used for the patient. It is also standard and has been for decades to have people on drips to have stablise blood pressure. Such things are now beginning to be offered in veterniary practice, which is good, but they are elective. Many people still consider them as some luxury that is not necessary. Human medicine consider such things unnecessary luxury’s when it comes to mental health treatment, and I don’t believe that will change.

    I understand the wish to get people to use these drugs more wisely, but I personally do not believe this will work. People believe these drugs are harmless and that they make you feel better than good and doctors believe that. The vast majority of antidepressents and growing numbers of antipsychotics are prescribed by GP’s in a 15 minute consulation, without them knowing anything about the drugs, or even worse the person. They have been pushed in this direction more by psychiatrists than drug companies. They used to refer to psychiatrists, psychiatrists have done huge amounts of education to say that is not necessary, these are incredibly safe and effective drugs. Psychiatrists are aware that these drugs are not approved for children, GP’s are not, but they are being pushed to prescribe them at younger and younger ages. The problem is the system and the whole practice of it. A blood test being available will not change anything, as it relies on it being done and people waiting for the results to come back before prescribing, which would never happen. It also requires people believing in side effects.

  • Brilliantly said, common sense says what you have just summed up. One could not pass a high school science subject doing the research they do, but they claim it as some sort of miracle and lifesaving research!!??

    How they ever made it through medical school is beyond me. How they even managed to get the marks to enter medical school is beyond me, given the research they now produce.

    Two plus two equals four is clearly something they just have not mastered yet!!

  • How can one discuss something that does not actually exist. The last I knew an illness was a physical thing that was diagnosed with medical tests. They diagnose us sitting four feet away from us with a pen and paper, and then wonder why we don’t believe them. Why can they not see that they are part of the problem. Feeling sad is not a life long brain disease, never has been. Being bored in school is not a life long brain disease, and never will be, etc, etc, etc. Actually allowing people to FEEL normal human emotions without labelling them as life long brain diseases is the first step. For those that do have problems then one needs to help them to recover and work through those problems, not just sedate them drugs.

  • People are scared to admit what the real dangers of any of these drugs are. I have had thousands of people claim that the only reason antidepressents are linked to suicide, is because they work so brilliantly and so fast that the person does not have time to adjust to not being depressed anymore!!! They claim that side effects are only an issue in people who do not have the underlying condition, as in those with the said conditions, ANY side effects will be mild in comparision to the underlying disease.

    I also don’t think the parents in this case are willing to consider the dangers that these drugs cause to anyone who takes them. Why should there son have been so badly affected, when the media says they are brilliantly – must have been a wrong diagnosis. Better to blame that than the admit the real problems.

    Of course one has to question what an accurate diagnosis is. One can hardly accurately diagnose something that does not exist. The same is said of antipsychotics, antidepressents, etc, etc. They do not cause problems for those with the underlying condition.

    When problems develop that cannot be ignored they simply change the diagnosis and said the previous one was wrong!! You don’t see real doctors doing that. I mean if chemotherapy does not work in treating cancer, one does not say, hey sorry we got it wrong, they don’t have cancer, they have diabetes instead!!

    When we prove that we have recovered and don’t require maintenacne medication they say that we never had the underlying condition in the first place. Yet they were the ones who stood in front of a judge and said that we would die without this treatment?!!! How do they manage to get things so so wrong. Seeing the truth is just too hard for most people!!

  • This bit of the article just really summed it up well:

    “Dr. Parker met with Richard alone. The doctor noted depression, anxiety and suicidal ideas.

    Dr. Parker wrote three 30-day prescriptions: Clonidine (a sleep aid), Venlafaxine (an antidepressant) and Adderall, 60 milligrams a day.

    In an interview last November, Dr. Parker said he did not recall the details of Richard’s case but reviewed his notes and tried to recreate his mind-set during that appointment. He said he must have trusted Richard’s assertions that medication was not an issue, and must have figured that his parents were just philosophically anti-medication. Dr. Parker recalled that he had been reassured by Richard’s intelligent discussions of the ins and outs of stimulants and his desire to pursue medicine himself.

    “He was smart and he was quick and he had A’s and B’s and wanted to go to medical school — and he had all the deportment of a guy that had the potential to do that,” Dr. Parker said. “He didn’t seem like he was a drug person at all, but rather a person that was misunderstood, really desirous of becoming a physician.”

    According to the doctors assessment he was suicidal, depressed
    and anxious and he was prescribe THREE different medications, yet they felt that he would make a good doctor??? How is someone who is suicidal supposed to be a doctor?? Let alone one who is so depressed and anxious that they require psychiatric treatment. I guess one should add that the person was also very psychotic and addicted to drugs as well, but they did not even consider that. Still trying to work out why he prescribed the Adderal for depression, anxiety and suicidal ideation??? Since when is that a standard treatment for those so called conditions which the doctor diagnosed?!!

    Is it any wonder that we have a problem with doctors prescribing these drugs, when half of them are probably already taking them themselves, and they consider side effects proof of another brain disease!!

  • When I was a child I told people I saw snakes and spiders. What I was really describing was a penis. I was raised in a pedophile ring. And no these are not memories that have been planted in my head. The people involved have been charged on the basis of them videoing everything they did to me. Are you still saying that I had scizophrenia???

    But the issue here is not whether or not Jani was abused, it is what is currently being done to her. Or are you saying it is good that she in a COCTAIL of antipsychotics, NONE of which are FDA approved? If these COCTIALS are so essential for the treatment of her disease, as you call it, then why are you yourself not on these in your eye’s essential and lifesaving drugs.

    TRUTH: NUMEROUS different treatments have been suggested to the parents, even by the current providers. Even offered in conjunction with her current drug coctail. They have REFUSED ALL OF THEM. If what they are doing is so good and so effective then WHY is Jani not getting better. WHY are the other kids not getting better??

    FACT: The Hearing Voices movement have had huge successes in treating similar children, WITHOUT labelling it as abuse. WHY are YOU so opposed to anything other than drugging these kids to the point of sedation, especially when you yourself refuse to take the drugs even though according to you, you have the exact same condition.

    HOW are these drugs GOOD for developing bodies, since they manage to kill adults. How many more children have to DIE from these drug coctails before anyone will consider anything else. Other things have been offered to these parents, most of it in conjunction with the current drug coctails and they refused saying it was proven that she had a brain diseas and that these drugs were treating the chemical imbalance. That is not asking for help. Help has been offered, and they have rejected it. Fact is nothing they are doing is helping the poor child, and it will not be long before she dies of this drug coctail, and according to you, that is because people are not doing enough to look for the scizophrenia gene!! They have been looking for DECADES. If there was a gene it would have been found by now. Even if there is some physical thing that alone is not going to help. There is NO disease or condition in which medication alone can help something. Even type 1 – genetic based diabetes requires careful dietry monitoring as insulin is in food and other things in food will impact on how the insulin is used by the body, etc. The idea that you just do a blood test and shove in an injection of insulin is so so so wrong and does not work. It is what causes it to get so out of control and for the person to get sicker. NO ONE will ever be able to prove that schizophrenia is just like diabetes, although you clearly believe that it is. Even so do you seriously believe that it would become the first disease in the world to be treated by a pill alone??

    The simple fact is that regardless of what is causing Jani to be as she is, the current drug coctail is not treating her, and it is doing a great deal of harm to her. EVERYONE would agree with that. I have yet to know of any psychiatrist who does not claim that these drugs have multiple and life threatening side effects. They are not meant for young children. The parents have been offered many other treatments, and have refused each and every one of them. We do have many many things that could help her. IF as you say these drugs are so essentail for her to keep her well, then why are you not on them????

  • Brilliantly said. Nothing could be done while the child was with the parents. In fact all the evidence already shows that anyway. The ONLY time Jani has been calm is when she is hospitalised, and her parents are not there. When they visit all the problems start again, but people still claim she has a biological brain disease.

    You could not have been more clear about what NAMI has done. Legalised child abuse, not long after society finally recognised the damage that it did. 100 years ago parents owned children and could do as they wish to them, in many cases even killing them. Over time we have finally admitted the damage that is done, by ALL types of abuse, then along comes psychaitry and legalises it all again, by labelling all such children with brain diseases and drugging them to sedation.

  • How can someone be asked to take treatment for an illness that does not exist. And how can one develop a treatment for something, when they do not know what it is that they even want to treat. The drugs they want people to take are not even approved by the FEA for that use. They want people on these drugs to keep them well. But NO medication is approved by the FDA for maintenance, which is exactly what this is. They are approved on the basis of so called symptom relief for short term crisis use, on the basis of 6 week clinical trials. Still trying to understand why they expect the law to force people to participate in medical experimentation. There is no way this is anything but that. While I question the qasi science of the studies the FDA has approved, fact is they are sitll only for short term use. Simply ask them to have these medications approved for maintenance treatment and they would not have a leg to stand on. And don’t think they have not tried. They tried for DECADES to get these drugs approved for that. In the end they just gave up and instead focused on convincing the public that these drugs “keep people well”!!!

    It never ceases to amaze me how people can define forced treatment as something humane and caring. There is a team in Australia who forcibly treats people living on the streets!! They go and find them walking the streets, pushes them into a car and then gives them an injection in their arse with long acting antipsychotics. Apparently that is something we should be proud of. At an absolute minimum one would think the poor people deserve to have a roof over their heads and food to eat!! I am yet to speak to anyone who has an issue with what is being done to them. No one even considers it unethical to treat them without providing them with food and shelter!!

  • Stephen what you have described is very accurate. There is a politican in Australia, who was a former teacher, who is trying to get rid of the ADHD diagnosis. Shame he wont do it for everything else, but he is concerned with some things in the current system.

    One thing he has said is this. When he was being a poor teacher every child in the class had ADHD as they were bored. When he was being an average teacher sure some kids were difficult, but when he was being a brilliant teacher no child in the class had ADHD as it was it job to ensure they remained focused and on task. Teachers have led go of that job and now expect psychiatrists and drugs to do it for them. A bit like therapists have stopped doing there job of helping people work through things and now expect drugs to do it for them.

    Amazing how instead of keeping children occupied and challenged and asking them to think for themselves we label them with fictional brain diseases and drug them.

  • THere is NO evidence anywhere in the world for a chemical imbalance. If one existed they would be able to measure it by now.

    In order to develop antibiotics one had to first know what bacteria was. They then had to put bacteria into a test tube and then find other substances to kill it.

    One cannot put feeling sad, hearing voices, or the like into a test tube. We cannot even take brain scans to prove such things exist. There is NO biological test, and hence NO biological treatment can exist. One cannot treat an underlying chemical imbalance if one does not exist. And one sure as hell cannot come up with a treatment for something if the something they are wanting to treat does not exist.

    The experiences of these conditions are very real. Some people choose to take medication and that is there right. What is not right is claiming they treat a fictional disease when they don’t and even worse is forcing the treatment onto someone. Jani is very clear in not wanting them. At an absolute minimum something else should be tried. I don’t know that anyone is classifying taking a holiday as a treatment, that setting some goals is a treatment. There are very real things, mainly talking therapies that have been proven to work. And there is EVIDENCE that they have not been tried. The family has rejected everything other than medication and they searched it out. It should also be added that NO medications are approved for use in anyone under the age of 13. Hence she is being forced onto experimental drug contails. There is no evidence that anyone should be on multiple drugs, let alone a young child. She is on doses higher than those given to many adults. How is a young child expected to function on those doses??

  • A brilliant article Jacqui and very true.

    I have watched and read this case with horror for many years and my views will never change.

    Jani’s parents were initally referred to local mental health services who wanted to try therapy, they refused it and deliberately searched out a clinic that would diagnose schizophrenia and medicate her as much as necessary!!!

    I know of numerous trauma therapists that have been concerned about this case from the beginning. Jani has always been well in hospital, has refused to see her parents and has only ever been voilent to them!!! That raises red flags. One of her primary delusions/hallucinations is seeing spiders and snakes, where there are none. This is incredibly common in children who have been orally raped at a young age. They cannot verbalise what was or is being done to them with words as they cannot explain it. This does not mean the parents were involved. It could well have been someone else caring for the child. It may not be the case at all.

    It could well be that the father started beating the child when she started acting out due to abuse from someone else. It could be him, it could well not be. No one will ever know. But since when is hitting or starving a child a form of treatment for anything at all, it isn’t.

    What is very very true is that nothing except medication has been tried. No one is willing to consider that the child might be able to be something else. The child herself has been interviewed on multiple occasions and has always said the medications do nothing to stop the things she sees and she does not want to take them. She was saying that at the age of 6.

    Drugging a child to the point of sedation does not and never will treat any underlying condition. What it does do is cause irreversable side effects and ensure that no other healing can take place. Since nothing else is being considered or even contemplated that will never happen.

    The parents are hell bent on proving the child has a genetic biological brain disease and will not under any circumstances consider anything else. Given how much failure has been seen by that belief, one would think it would be time to consider something else. I have known parents who took this route, but when it became obvious it wasn’t working they become open to something else. In this case the parents have instead used it to argue just how strong a genetic biological brain disease she has.

    Even if by the millionth of a chance something genetic could be found, that alone is not going to fix Jani. There is NO condition in the world in which medication alone is going to fix it. Why should this fictional disease be any different. Even if they could prove schizoprhenia existed, why should it be the only disease or condition in the world currable by simply taking a pill. Our need as a soceity to believe that a pill can fix every ill is beyond me. EVERYTHING requires massive lifestlye changes. EVERYTHING requires something else. And in this case the evidence is very clear that what is being done is incredibly damaging and of no theraputic benefit.

  • To some degree I agree with you, Autism is massively overdiagnosed. And one good thing I can say about the upcoming DSM 5 is that the daignosis of Autism will be being reined in slightly. It is expected that only 25% of those diagnosed with Aspergers will meet the new diagnosis. But of course they have social communication disorder instead to take it over!!!

    Thousands of children have been very poorly diagnosed, for little to no reason.

    BUT I was a profoundly Autistic child, when daignosed some 35 years ago at the age of 3. I did not make any real sounds until I was 8, and have only in the last 10 years been able to communicate at a normal level. I did not read at all until I was 15. I now have university degrees. I still have problems that could easily be defined as Autism. But I have recovered to a huge level. I know of many many people like me. The problem is not what these people can achieve, but the way we respond to them as children. The behavioural treatments force children further inside, rather than assisting them. And for many children they are akin to child abuse, just legalised as they are labelled as autistic, much in the same way as mass drugging is legalised if you are labelled as schizophrenic.

    I don’t believe that one can ‘cure’ autism. I do believe there are parts of me that will always be severly autistic. But I have made a huge recovery and thousands of others have also. The current view of it though and the push for behavioural treatments does nothing to help those people. This does not take away from the fact that Autism, and especially Asperger’s is the latest fad diagnosis for anything that is not perfectly normal. Since no child is normal, that is bascially everyone!!!

  • In relation to voilent electronic games. About 15 years ago I was attempting to buy a computer game for a 10 year old for christmas. I ended up giving up as I could not find anything that was not voilent. We had some great educational games for preschool aged children. Some for children up the age of 7 or 8. But after that it was all killing and nothing else. I would not buy that for anyone, to me it just incites violence. The parents would not have allowed her to have it anyway. Wasn’t that part of the way they say the 9/11 Highjackers learnt how to fly, via video cames. Do games alone do this, no, but they do desentise us to voilence. We do not need any desentisation.

    People labelled as mentally ill are suffering from emotional distress. At such times they naturally withdraw from people, I know I did and I know that everyone I have ever communicated with who has experienced the same did. We do anything to keep us occupied. Young people have been bought up on electronic media and games, they can play it on there own. What other games do you propose they play, solitare all day long?

    The medications do not treat any illness, and hence do not help. They remain isolated and hence keep doing anything. We do nothing to address the underlying issues, all that happens is they are stigmatised and move further and further into themselves. They need something to do all day, and electronic games provide that. And voilent ones are all they have. Sure there are some facebook game type things now, but many parents are regulating internet access to keep them safe from adults wanting to harm them, and think that if games are sold they must be OK. The government would not allow the sale of these things if they were going to do anything bad.

    The US miltary has hired computer programs to write games, that are now sold to general public. They make ALL people in training play these games as it desentises them and they are more likely to shoot more people. The miltary would not be doing it if it didnt’ work. Games make shooting acceptable. A problem ALL forces faced in the first and second world war was soldiers refusing to shoot. The reason hitler bought in gas chambers was becasue the staff could not cope with shooting. Soldiers refused to battle on christmas day and were threatened for doing so. They were often reprimanded and quite severly for not shooting enough. The germanss drugged the soldiers. ALL allied forces, including the US did at times have senior staff hold guns to the soldiers head to make them shoot. All countries face issues with getting miltary personal to be happy to kill people. Fact is most people find it abhorrent.

    People often say that remove guns and it will only be replaced by knives, yes and no. Firstly people find it much much harder to kill with a knife. They can shoot from a distance, with a knife, you literally have to touch them, not just look at them. A knife takes much longer, requires more phsyical effort and above all else cannot shoot 100 people a minute, like some of thes assult rifles.

    Psychiatric drugs numb people. Sure that makes it easier to do things one would normally have some level of self control over. BUT, that alone is not going to be enough. If you are so horrified by voilence you will not go anywhere near it, numbing you will not help. It did not help hitler. He first numbed the soldiers, then he set up the gas chambers, as having them numbed was not enough for them to kill innocent people, including children. A drug might mean that a person instead of bashing someone, shoots them. If a person would never ever lay a finger on someone, it will not make them shoot them. It can heighten the level of someone, by numbing them somewhat, but it is not going to cause someone who is so horrified by voilence to commit the ultimate violent act.

    Our schools and child care centres, no longer allow children to play voilent games. They are not allowed to pretend play, even with fingers that they are going to hurt you. Such games are out, and will be stopped immediately. There are hundreds of thousands of games children can play, they do not need to pretend to kill or harm each other.

    While our mental health services are horrible and yes, no one will listen to you, school teachers will, shcool counsellors will. Kids and especially teenagers have someone to turn to, who will listen, and offer an open ear. There is a massive push to stamp out bullying and huge programs are being put in place to deal with it. While I understand people not talking to psychiatrists or the mental health system. I do not understand young people not talking to parents (in most cases – clearly some are abusive and that is not a solution) or in particular school teachers, counsellors or the like. There are youth workers to support them, etc. Some mental health systems are attempting to move in, but schools are still being human, and in particular teachers are being human, and listening as they always have. It is a part of the job description for all teachers. Are there cases they refer on that I don’t like, sure, but they still remain there for them, willing to listen at any time. And no psychiatrists will not listen to teachers saying they are geting worse, they are the experts and teachers know nothing.

  • Love the response Sinead, agree totally.

    mjk, here we have a school tourched and burnt to the ground every couple of years – ALL out of school hours. Those responsible are usually caught and they all did it to get back at the school for what they feel was done to them. They did not enter with automatic assult rifles with enough ammunition to kill the whole school was present and kill kids and point blank range multiple times.

    This is not about saying we do not need to look at why, but it is also acknowledging that someone does not do what Adam did for some small reason like feeling lonely?? What you have identified are a whole lot of very valid things that can and do go wrong. But millions of children experience those things, often to profound levels and do not turn out like Adam. To say that one of them was enough to set off acts like his is beyond me. There is NO evidence that he was seeking help. There is evidence that people were trying to reach out to him.

    Of the recent school shooting, I suspect the child in custody was angry at the victim, and deliberately wanted to hurt him. One should be asking WHY he felt the only way to deal with teh issues he had with that child was by shooting him?? Was he being bullied, and his solution to be bullied is to shoot the person?? What is it about the adults around him, that he did not trus them to thelp him and instead decided to shoot the person.

    If Adam was feeling any number of things as you claim, why was his solution to those problems to go into an elemtary school of all places and kill everyone in it??

    Shooting is not a normal response to anything. Something has to be going massvily wrong to believe that shooting to cure the problem. What sort of society teaches children that the solution to ALL problems is to just shoot people?? Is that what these children have been taught?? The things listed, occur in ALL countries, but those countries do not have them shooting each other to death, in huge numbers, and they certianly do not have them happening in schools. I have never heard of any schools having security or metal detactors except in the US. Those things are not the reasons they are not happening on other countries.

  • Children are on average diagnosed with Autism at the age of 2, over 98% are PROVEN to have shown signs from BIRTH. To say that our conditions are caused by these medications is beyond me. Tell me any newborn infant being drugged with antipsychotics??? And the FACT is MOST parents were not on these drugs during pregnancy.

    Psych rights movement is not about saying that medications CAUSED these conditions. I had and still have PTSD, it was not CAUSED by psychiatric medications, it was caused by trauma?? Common sense says that. Medications did not help. There is a big difference to saying that medications have done nothing to help, to saying they caused irreversial side effects, and that in effect they made things worse to saying they were the SOLE cause of ALL mental distress.

    FACT: MOST people voluntarily enter psychiatric care and begin to voluntarily take these medications believing they will help. When they don’t they stop taking them and end up forced. They did not ENTER psychiatric care and were not placed on drugs on the basis of being perfectly happy, well adjusted people. Perfectly happy, well adjusted people do not seek help for emotional or mental distress.

    Please provide the EVIDENCE that the SOLE cause of PTDS is toxic chemicals?? Are you seriously saying that NO ONE is ever hurt by being exposed to extreme forms of trauma, that EVERY SINGLE PERSON on the planet would laugh it off if they were eating organic food and not taking any possible toxic substance and only breathing in perfeclty clean air?? Children in such places are raped, and guess what they are traumatised by it. How is that possible, when NOTHING can cause mental or emotional distress except for toxic substances.

    You clearly do not fully understand Neurodiversity. If you don’t understand something you cannot criticise it. If you claim to be an expert on something such as Neurodiveristy, then be prepared to back up EVERYTHING you are claiming about it.

  • I have gone whole months without anyone speaking to me, without any access to the internet, I did not have family I had no one. I did not and have not become a mass murderer?? Being lonely does not cause someone to go and kill a school full of children. I am all for helping people who are lonely, but to some how say that if someone has someone say hello them, you can cure every problem they have ever had is beyond me.

    What do you want to do, send around teams of people to every home to make sure that no one has a day without someone saying hello to them? How is that going to cure mass murder?? What happened to calling lifeline? Lifeline is not just about wanting to die, it is simply about not being able to cope. Adam had a mother who loved him and an extended family. Millions of us do not have that. Adam had a thousand times more than millions of other people. The millions of people starving in refugee camps don’t go and commit mass murder, because they don’t like the lot of life that was handed to them.

    I cannot and will not understand anyone who justifies and says that people should have a LEGAL RIGHT to commit mass murder, and that they should not face any criminal sanctions at all. If that is not what you are saying, then what is it. You said criminal sanctions are wrong for mass murder?? What do you want to do, legalise it?? Do you want to legalise pedophila as well?? And yes there are thousands of people who claim that pedophiles are just loving children and should not be prevented from having normal human feelings. Forget about the billions of children who are irrepreparedly harmed by them. We need to feel sorry for them and condem the victim for having the courage to speak out and to try and put an end to the torment they suffer.

    Why don’t you advertise and find people who are willing to be the victims of mass murders then they can keep carrying out what they want to do, and only those who support them will be harmed. Sounds fair to me.

    There is nothing normal about wanting to commit mass murder. As for how to prevent it, try looking at what caused them to become this way in the first place. But according to you they are just displaying normal human emotions and they should be legally allowed to feel and express those emotions like anyone else.

    I do not know why I am even bothering to write this post. I will not be coming back here. When someone defends the rights of mass murders to be free to continue doing as they are doing, that they should not face criminal charges for it, and that they are simply normal human beings it is beyond me.

    Perhaps you need to consider why the rest of the world does not face these problems in anywhere near the same level as the US?? Perhaps the best way to prevent it is to look at what the rest of the world is doing and what the US is not. But then again when you believe in it, I guess you would not want to do that.

  • People only know what they want to know. If they do not want to know it they will not know it. Very few psychaitrists have any training at all in any form of therapy, and so any research related to it, is not going to be read by them.

    They do admit that they only have short term studies, but then say that it would be a waste of money to do them for longer as it would stop people from getting the treatment they need. They consider is acceptable in some circumstances to withhold a drug from someone for the 6 week clinical trial, but they consider anything longer than that medical negligence!!!

    For many it is way to scary to admit what is right in front of you. And of course these have not been publised in the major journals, as they would not usually publish them, as it would threaten the drug sponsership they recieve.

  • The only good thing that can come from that is the fact that they are now being honest and admitting that all they are doing is offering symptom relief, IF they are offering anything at all. Of course they ignore the fact that the side effects are usually much much worse than the initial symptoms ever were. But admitting you are not treating a brain disease and are instead offering symptomatic relief is a slight sign of honesty, if one can classify anything psychiatrists do as honest. Of course there is the opposite side to this and that is that since they are now just medicating symptoms they now have justified reasons in there own eyes at least for putting people on multi drug coctails. But for me a psychiatrist admitting they are not treating a brain disease and are instead simply offering symptomatic relief is them admitting the brain disease really is not working out.

  • Anyone can do research about anything at all. The question is not whether someone has done some quack study showing something, but rather the methodology used. This is what Robert Whitaker has done really well. He knows science and he knows how to question research. It is why for the first time what the survivor communtiy has known finally has something to go on.

    When I was at university I was shown just what some quack researh could be. Frued’s Pensis Envy Theory was being studied. The belief that women want to have a pensis. In fact Freud went so far as to say that the whole reason women had pubic hair was to hide the fact that they did not have a pensis. That does not explain why men also have it. A feminist response to that could be to say that the reason men have hair on their chests is to hide that they do not have breasts. But this study was determined to prove it was real. So they got a whole lot of univeristy students to sit a test, each was given a pencil and the paper. The answers were written on the question paper, so there was no paper to take away. They were not told to take the pencil, not told to leave it. 60% of females took the pencil, 35% of males took it. To the researchers the pencil was a pensis substitute and that was why so many females took it. That is not real science.

    The first publicised research on vaccine and autism was related to the MMR. One study was done, and he concluded that the MMR causes Autism. The community by and large accepted it. NO ONE read the actual study, no one questioned the methodology. Immunisation rates in some countries dropped to less than 40%. The Autism community STRONGLY advised parents against vaccinating there children with any further vaccinations, and to not vaccinate any other children. Then someone analysed the research methodolgy and that was not from the immunisation community. The methology was flawed, was not at all what the results showed and could not be replicated.

    Rates of DEATH for the diseases covered from these vaccinations increased in all countries, and vaccination levels remained low. Did governments step in and try to do something sure they did. If you have any real evidence to prove that vaccinations do not prevent disease or death or I would love to see it, but I will also be very sceptical of it.

    I do believe that vaccines should be started later, if for on reason than side effects will be lessened. I also believe they should be spaced out more. But I do and would always FULLY vaccinate any children I had, and I will continue to vaccinate myself. I do not believe that vaccination causes autism, because I have never ever read any REAL research that could even be considered to show a causual relationship, let alone saying it is the sole cause, which you have stated. I have also never ever come across any research to show that 99.9% of autism is regression, yet you claim it is a PROVEN fact. A proven fact that NO ONE sees. Sorry but if it was as obvious as you say, parents would be saying that.

    Children with autism are very very rarely medicated here with psychotropic medications. It is simply non existant. Does not mean it never happens, but it is incredibly rare. ALL of the Autism service providers do not know of any cases. Specialist autism teachers that do the Individual Educational Plans of ALL children with Autism, come across one case in ever few thousand children. I do not know of ANY parent with a child with Autism who has taken antidepressents. Sure thousands do, but these ones haven’t. Parents are not conned into believing the child’s symptoms did not exist before birth. Child Health Nurse visits and developmental assessments done EVERY MONTH prove it. There were concerns about these children’s development from the start. They were getting therapy from long before they recieved a daignosis, as they clearly had developmental delays and that is all that is required for early intervention therapy. If I am to seriously believe you we have a whole country who is claiming a normally developing child has developmental delays of more than 2 standard deviations below the norm, and that thousands of therapists are treating these children, when they have absolutely no problems at all?? Sorry but the arguement simply does not add up. And whole populations are based on it.

    So what will the effects of the APA’s definiton of Autism be??? Research says it will lower the rates, but you claim to have reserch to show it will continue to increase?? How?? Where is that research and how is the research to show that changing the diagnosis and making it tighter not right??

  • If you really want to try and understand how these people turn out this way, read Bruce Perry’s book Born for Love: Why Empathy is Essential and Endagnered”. Another good book would be Lefkowitz, Our Guys: The Glen Ridge Rape and the Secret Life of the Perfect Suburb”. Bruce Perry’s first book “They Boy who was raised as a dog” is also an essential read.

    I do not believe that these people are born evil, but equally I do not believe that simply removing psychiatric drugs will immediatley rid the world of all voilence, mass murder or the like. To seriously believe as many many people on this site do, that simply banning psychiatric drugs will ensure that NO crime is ever committed in the US again is beyond me and most people. And of course then there are the people who believe that simply feeding them organic foods will cure them Evil ways as well. No one can cure these people and allow them to safely live in the community, but one can do much to prevent the things that largely contribue to the development of these personalities from ending up that way, IF we raise them right from birth. There certainly is some evidence that people can get a genectic predispostiion to voilence, but what they with that is what matters.

    It is much much easier to say remove psychiatric drugs, than it is to look at the real issues that cause a person to have absolutely no empathy at all. It is no different to those people who claim that we need to forcibly treat all people so labelled as mentally ill. It appears as though you are doing something without looking at the real problems. Looking at these people as adults is going to do next to nothing if you do nothing at all about how they were raised to begin with. And that is not just about what parents do it is also about what the school system does, the community of the school and the wider community in which they live.

    No one thing is going to stop this stuff happening. Yet everyone wants a quick fix. We do know that we are born with all the brain cells we will ever have, but they bascially don’t work as they are not connected up. 90% of those connections occur by the 3rd birthday. What happens in those first 3 years largely determines what will happen for the person for the rest of life. Small changes can be made, but they will never be easy or natural. A bit like learning a forign langauge, learn it by the end of elemtary school and you will do well, do so after that and you will always speak it with an accent. If children are not taught the necessary social and emotional skills needed for life by the 3rd birthday they will always struggle with them for life. Things can be done to assist, but it will still be a struggle. Sure we need to assist them as best we can, but above all else we need to do what we can to ensure that we don’t have to help so many people, preferrably none at all. But of course these are much deeper issues. Do I think that there is a massive overuse of psychiatric drugs, yes, do I think that some people labelled as mentally ill can act strangely and out of control yes, do I think the guns in the US need to be controlled, hell yes. But I also believe that those things are only the very very tip of the iceberg and will do very little. May reduce the numbers at each shooting, slow them down a bit, but not really change anything at all. But it is much much easier to come up with some very very simplistic response. It means that we don’t have to look deeper at the society that we live in and the way that we are raising our children and looking after each other in general.

  • Sinead I can totally understand where you are coming from. from the otherside of the world, it is incomprehensible for me to understand what is happening with gun and other voilence in the US. I live in a country in which our police officers do not wear bullet proof vests and were only issued them as an optional item 12 months ago. Our police are not issued guns. They have access to them, but they remain at police stations. The biggest issue we have in training our police is that they must learn how to shoot a gun and it takes them hours to even get over the concept of holding a gun. 98% of our police officers will never direct a gun at anyone, and 99.9% of police officers will never shoot a gun. to think of guns being used in elemtary schools is beyond me. To have a suggestion made, that teachers should be issued wtih guns to protect young children, just made me shutter.

    We still regularly talk about 9/11 here, and I would think that in many parts of the US it is still raw. To have this added onto it is beyond me. And I do totally agree that these people are pure evil. How they have become that way is beyond me. I think it is much easier for people to simply not think about what was done and to instead come up with some really simplistic responses. He was crazy, he must have had an untreated mental illness, how else could he have done it. I don’t understand it, so blame it on maddness. Others who then say the drugs made him do it. But BILLIONS of people take those drugs and 99.999% of them would never ever consider any such thing. To say that the drugs alone could cause such a thing is beyond me. Gun control. To some degree I would agree that restricting some level of access to guns would help the situation, but that alone is not going to stop these people. It might lower the numbers of people hurt and that is not in any sense a bad things, but much much more is going on here and there is no simple answer. These people are pure Evil with a captial E. This one more than most, since he shoot first graders. I agree totally with your words, what was possibly going through his mind to consider such an attack. This was not a spur of the moment thing, none of these things have been. It was very carefully planned, and he had the resources to do the whole school, an ELEMTARY school of all places, with 5 year olds, the ones he did shoot were 6?? Who can do that? That is not a human being. In my opinion you cannot possibly feel sorry for Adam Lanza. There is no way at all that a real human being can do what he did.

    I agree totally with the decision not to tell the children. They do not need to fear going to school. Children should feel safe at school, they cannot possibly learn if they do not. They cannot possibly learn to have empathy if they do not feel safe, and Adam Lanza clearly did not have empathy. Empathy is essential and is becoming an incredily engadered species, which is scary. No one will ever be able to comprehend what was going through Adam Lanza’s mind any suggestion that they did or will is total crap. No human being can comprehend EVIL.

    I cannot possibly begin to comprehend the grief that you are going through. I don’t think you can possibly have time to recover from one of these things before the next seems to occur, but this one is beyond them all for me. I know that each of these things shakes us here for weeks even though we are on the other side of the world. I cannot begin to comprehend what must be happening in the US.

  • You seem to know very little to nothing about Autism and you also seem to think you have the ability to diagnose me. I said and I will say it again I was diagnosed 35 (yes that is THRITY FIVE) YEARS ago. I was diagnosed in 1976 at the age of 2 (yes, I was a TWO year old). Aspergers did not exist, high functioning Autism did not exist, full blown classical autism existed. If you do not believe this do some research and above all else simply look at old editions of the DSM. Aspergers did not exist until 1989. It is since it was introduced that diagnosistic numbers exploded. On top of that changes were also made to the diagnostic criteria of Autism. But of course you are not capable of looking or even considering what happened in the past. According to you a person that has full blown classical autism, must be retarded. I was labelled retarded and many other things. I did not speak until I was 9 and had no meaningful speech until I was 14. I did not read until I was 16. I still struggle with verbal communication. Just because I found a way to communicate with words in writing, does not mean I do not continue to meet the diagnostic criteria for classical autism. Fact is I do.

    The APA is changing the diagnostic criteria for Autism and removing Asperger’s. Most of the Autism community are up in arms as many people will no longer meet the diagnostic criteria. In the area that I live no one will diagnose asperger’s anymore and suprise suprise diagnostic rates are decreasing rapidly. But according to you this is not possible. The increase as been in classical full blown rain man type autism yet you cannot produce ONE scientific research article to support that.

    I work with a parent group of children diagnosed with full blown classical autism. There are over 100 families. ALL children displayed signs of Autism from birth, and there are video’s to support it. I guess they are just all freaks of nature and the only 100 children on the whole planet who have shown signs of autism since birth.

    You also fail to take account of vaccinations in other countries. The vaccinations and vaccination schedules of the US are not those of the rest of the world. Some countries do not start vaccinations until the age of 2, yet they are still getting an increase in diagnosis, and an increase at a young age? How is it possible if the children have even had any vaccinations yet.

    Belive it or not the US is not the whole world. But I guess it must be the rest of the world that has these problems and in the US ALL autism is caused by vaccinations, just like ALL murders in the US are caused by psychiatric drugs. Yet EVERY other country in the world has these drugs and don’t have mass murders. I live in one of them!!

    I was court ordered to take medication for many years. I know forced treatment better than most. I had no right to a court hearing, does not exist here. Psychiatrists have total rights. If they say you are mad, you are mad, it is as simple as that, no right to a second opinion, no right to see a judge, no judge even knows it has occured. No one needs to know, the psychiatrist said and that is that.

  • There is a BIG difference to saying that drugs contribute to someone’s actions and saying they were the SOLE and ONLY reason they did it. Your statements were that the ONLY reason and the SOLE reason ANY of these people have committed crimes was because of the drugs.

    I am also willing to bet a trillion dollars that these people DID have histories of voilence. One of them had raped nurmous girls at school, one in class with teachers watching who said “boys will be boys”. He was a top football player and these things have to be expected. In EACH and EVERYONE of these cases there were concerns about these people’s behaviour very very early on. In the case of the rape, reports of voilence had been going on since the kid started preschool. Parents were rich and powerful. With the rape they could no longer ignore it, so they got off the criminal charges, by saying he was mentally ill and the solution offered was to shove him on medications. I do not, never had and never will say that the drugs may have had some impact on his behaviour. But to say that he was perfectly normal healthy well functioning person does not add up. It does not add up for any of them. Psychaitrists may be very quick to prescribe pills and to hand them out like candy, and parents are very quick to take children to them. But psychiatrists do not treat people who are perfectly healthy, well functioning individuals without any issues at all. They would not have been sent to them in the first place. The problems might have been minor and made worse, but there was something there.

    It is very easy to blame the drugs. It is very easy to blame guns. It is very easy to blame social problems. It is very easy to blame anything. It is much much much harder to look at the combination of ALL of these things in combination. Taking away one will not solve the problem. Psychotropic medications have been around for 60 years, these murders are recent. They are also not occuring in other countries, despite the growing use of these drugs in EVERY country in the world.

    If you do not want to know the truth about these shooters you will not know it. It is very easy to simply listen to and read all the drugs made me do it arguments and to pretend that nothing else existed. Problem is there were many many variables in EVERY one of these cases. A drug alone cannot and never will cause a perfectly healthy person to go off the planet like that.

    Lets consider the father who murdered his children. He planned the whole thing out, without ANY issues at all. How is that possible on the drugs. He entered the hotel and paid for a room without any issues being noticed by anyone. He ordered room service. He was on the medications for 2 MONTHS before this. He NEVER reported ANY side effects. Said he never experienced any. Then for a matter of seconds he claims that he managed to enter such an acute psychotic state that he had no idea of what had happened. He was not even there. He murdered his children in cold blood. IMMEDIATELY after the murder, within SECONDS, he was completely 100% cured of the psychosis and he has NEVER EVER experienced it since, even though he was kept on medications in prison???? Drugs have side effects, i personally experienced thousands of them, but like that, no that is something that has never ever in the whole of history been seen anywhere before or since. Side effects are onoing, not sudden.

  • There certainly are people looking at the role of nutrition and environmental toxins in relation to psychaitric problems, including psychosis. There are even psychiatrists that primarily practice in this area, although they are very few and far between. It is usually called Orthomolecular Psychiatry. They will do full tests, not just blood tests, but hair samples, and many other things as well to see what is happening in the body. This is the Wikepedia piece about it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orthomolecular_psychiatry

    It certainly works well for some people, generally about 50% show massive improvements. That others don’t means psychiatrists as a whole reject it. Problem is there own treatments cannot do as much as this group does. At a minimum thsese tests should be done on everyone before they consider any drugs or anything else.
    http://www.hriptc.org/index.php

    It would also be very very true that no one asked him why he wanted to die. The same thing happened to me and everyone I know. I do not personally know of anyone who has attempted or contemplated sucide and who has ever been asked why. They believe it is a brain disease that makes us think such things, and that nothing else is of any relevance. Everyone I know of had very valid reasons for wanting to die, and pretending that those things do not exist is not going to change anything.

    Mindfreedom could also possibly link you in with some alternative resources.

  • As someone who was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 2, over 35 years ago, and I had never been vacinnated until the age of 6, I find it ironical when people say my autism was caused by vaccinations, vaccinations of whom. My mother and father had never been vaccinated, so don’t try saying it was passed onto them. i also showed symptoms from birth.

    98% of the growth in diagnosis of autism is not classical autism. Ever feel lonely, you must have autism, have any form of language delay, you must have autism, have any behavioural problems it must be autism. When I was at university some 20 years ago the fad diagnosis for ALL children with ADHD. It is now quite rare for children to be diagnosed with it. Diagnosis rates have halfed, and for every decrease in that diagnosis, there has been an increase in the diagnosis of autism. They simply move from one fad diagnosis to another.

    As for language delays, in order to learn to speak one has to hear language, the more language and that means REAL language one hears the more rapid development of speech they experience. Children now hear half of what they heard some 50 years and about a quarter of what they heard 20 years ago. WHY, because we now shove them front of the TV and expect the TV to babysit them. Television does not provide language role models. Children need to hear people, especially parents talking to them. Some children make it through unscathed, others do not. And of course there is the now inability of parents to discipline children. Children used to have limits set, no longer the case, then they wonder why the children become so out of control. Setting limits does not have to mean corporal punishment, but it does mean that limits have to be put in place and consequences for those actions. I don’t think that parents deliberately do a bad job, they do what they are led to believe is best.

    I do believe that SOME children, may have adverse reactions to vaccinations that may cause autistic like symptoms. I also do believe that our toxic chemicals in the environment can also play havoc. But the fact remains that hundreds of thousands of perfectly healthy children are also exposed to them and never suffer any such issues. There are and always have been people diagnosed with autism, in very undeveloped countries, and throughout history. How do you explain those people’s diagnosis if it is all caused by vaccinations and toxic chemicals.

    Is Autism even the same thing. There are over 16,000 different diagnostic possiblities, to say that over 16,000 different symptom presentations are the same disease is a bit beyond me. To blame everything on toxins and nothing on social factors is also beyond me. The most effective therapies are not ABA (which is child abuse and nothing else) it is relationship based therapies, which largely focus on accepting the child for who they are. Join the child in there world and they are much more likely to join you in your world.

    Despite all that, i personally do not like the lable of autism anymore than I like the labels given to me from psychiatrists for any number of different so called mental illnesses, they are made up diseases, and Autism is no difference. Do I continue to show those symptoms, do I continue to have huge problems, sure, but that is simply what makes me the unique individual that I am. I don’t need a label, or to be made normal, I am quite happy being the non normal person that I am. I don’t see that I am so defective that I need to be fixed or that someone needs to find a reason to blame for me being who I am. What happened to celebrating difference.

    Changing the diagnostic criteria so that more people fit the diagnosis, does not mean that some massive environmental toxin has taken over the world. Since when is not being the most extroverted person on the planet a crime. What happened to simply being allowed to be introverted. What happened to allowing people to be who they are.

    I personally do have a problem with the levels of toxin the environment and I do do reasonable amounts to reduce my exposure to them, I use natural body and household cleaning products, buy organic food when possible, etc, reduce cell phone usage, and only use conventional medicine as a last resort.

    I know someone with a diagnosis of Autism who had it there whole life and was finally diagnosed with Coeliacs disease at the age of 25. Within 6 months of removing wheat from there diet ALL symptoms and issues associated with the Autism had dissappeared, they made rapid and massive gains in speech, etc. Yet I can assure you removing wheat from the diet of everyone so diagnosed, has not had any impact on anyone else. She has had vaccinations since with no reactions, uses multiple chemicals with no issues, for her it was gluten and nothing else. What affects one person does not necessarily affect everyone else.

    Over 98% of children diagnosed with autism have shown signs since birth, they did not have normal development. Pregnant women have less toxic exposure today than in decades gone by. Why do the 2 percent who show symptoms later, not show them earlier, why do they react to vaccinations and others not. Why do the vast majority of people who take psychiatric drugs not become mass murders if the drugs cause it. Over a billion people take these drugs worldwide, not even one percentage become voilent. I do not believe these drugs are harmless, equally though I do not believe they turn everyone who takes them into mass murders. I do believe these drugs are inheriently toxic and are not the safe and effective substances we are led to believe, but to say that ALL mass murders are caused by these drugs and nothing else has any impact at all is not something I would ever agree with. To say they contributed is one thing, to say that these drugs are so brilliant that they enable people to focus to extreme levels so they can plan out mass murders over months, order in huge amounts of guns, amunition, etc. is beyond me. Over 90% of people on these drugs can barely lift there head off the pillow, yet these people, were so highly fucntioning it was beyond belief, and is beyond anything in the side effect profiles of the drugs. What we do know is that these were all very carefully planned and carried out attacks, you and others say the drugs caused the planning, and that is where the drugs made me do it, does not add up to me. Drugs like these do not enable or force anyone to plan to that level. And of course why only those few people, why only in the US, etc, etc. There was a mass shooting of over 75 people in Norway a few years ago, the guy who committed the crime had NEVER EVER taken any psychiatric drugs. How is that possible, when it is impossible to commit mass murder without being on these drugs?? Or is it just that no American can commit mass murder without being on these drugs. Was Osama Bin Landen also on them?? Were all the 9/11 terrorists also on them??

  • Agree totally. You are so needed here and so nice to see someone is really doing some research to dispell the myths. I remember studying twin studies when I was studying Psychology at uni and at most they only ever found 50% of identical twins with the same condition. Given that they share identical genes it is impossible to say it is gentic. Given that identical twins always share more environmental factors in common it also did not add up for me. When someone started telling me that PTSD was genetic, then I became even more sceptical!!

    There need to find a pill to cure everything is simply beyond me. There is no medical condition I am aware of where one can simply take a pill and be cured. There are always massive lifestyle changes that need to be made.

    I have a friend in her 50’s who was diagnosed with type 1 – insulin dependent diabetes as an infant. Sure she will always require insulin as her body is not capable of producing it. But foods do have very small amounts of insulin in them and so she has to calculate the amount of protein and carbohydrate in every food she eats, as that will determine what amount of insulin she needs. She needs to eat at set times, and have quite a set lifestlye, in terms of exercising at the same times to help control her blood sugars. It allows her to be in control of it. It is not and never will be simply about measuring her insulin level and topping it up via injections. Everything she does impacts on that level, and she needs to ensure it is increasing at a safe rate and not going too low, etc. She could test herself ever 10 minutes and keep giving herself insulin injections. None of that would enable her to live a healthier life, as it is doing nothing to take into account what her body is naturally doing.

    How on earth they can possibly claim that a condition which has no gene attached to it – they know what ALL genes are now if they were going to find it, it would have been found by now, is beyond me. Even if they find a medication that can help, which they clearly do not have at the moment, all they have are agents to sedate, it will not take away the need for a combination of other things to be involved. There will always be huge environmental changes that can be made to assist people with any condition and that is more for these fictional conditions than for anything else, but it does exist for everything else. How can human suffering and emotional distress possibly be caused by faulty genes. If anything it would be faulty not to experience these emotions.

    Sorry for getting so off topic, I look forward to reading more.

  • Some of us have been more abused by CBT than by medications. You seem to think that CBT is a perfectly harmless treatment, and you clearly show very little awareness of your own theraputic limitations by stating what you do. Anyone that is so obsessed with one thing, ie CBT to believe that it can cure everything and that nothing else is needed is no better than anyone else. In my world CBT would be outlawed long before medication. Open your eyes to the dangers and limitations of your own pet therapy and then you might truly be able to help people.

  • Very brilliantly written. The real problem is that the term recovery has been highjacked by the system. It has come to mean being medication complaint and understanding hte limitations caused by your fictional brain disease. Ask ANY professional about lowering dosages of medication – not going off, just lowering the dose and the immediate response is: “you do want to recover don’t you, you won’t be able to do that if you do not stay on this medication for life. You need to understand that you have a life long biological chemical imbalance in the brain and will need to take medication for life, just like someone with diabetes takes insulin”. Recovery to them means being allowed to live supervised outside of a hosptial. It means having some control over the food you eat. It means being allowed to work in sheltered workshops, etc. Problem is 99% of the consumer movement does not argue against it. When I say that is not recover, I am told that recover needs to be possible and while I might be able to live without medication, 99.9% of people will never be able to do so and we need to allow those people to believe that they can have some level of recover as well. And they would believe what they are saying to me, they are hand picked to work in the system, because they support the status quo, all the while shoving in the word recover in every sentence they speak and all over all the materials they produce.

  • One has to be able to define what recovery means first, and it usually means being medication complaint and understanding the limitations of your illness. Once you have done those things you are allowed to have some semblance of a life.

    When I discussed lowering, not withdrawing just lowering dosages of medication the immediate response from EVERYONE was “you do want to be able to keep recovering don’t you”. One cannot recover without being on medication for life. One cannot recover without acknowledging that they have a life long brain disease. Sorry but saying I have some fictional life long brain disease and will need to take mind numbing drugs for life is not and never has been recovery.

  • I know someone who was complaining of headaches, they said it was part of her disease, for years, and just keep increasing the medication!! Finally a new doctor came on and ordered a brain scan. She was in the final stages of a brain tumor that if found early would have easily have been able to be removed. I don’t expect her to live more than a few weeks now.

    I also know of similar stories in relation to restraints. Never ceases to amaze me the length they need to go to restrain someone. Yet when the police do the same things to someone they have labelled they criticise the police and tell them they should not be using such force and should respect the “illness” that they have. If they, the supposed experts are not willing to talk to anyone, why should they expect anyone else to. Of course if they simply treated the person like a human being they would not require any such thing. But I guess to do that, one would have to consider that they actually are a human being.

  • Such an accurate description of withdrawl from psychiatric drugs. Walking had long been something I enjoyed, and when that stopped I did for a long while believe it was my illness and more medication would cure it. When I found the strength to question the medication, sleeping 22 hours a day and barely being alive the other two was not helping me, then the treats started. Slowly I weaned myself and the last year where I have been totally free from these drugs has been amazing. The places I walk to has increased, more so as I am simply so alive now that I have nothing else to do. I believed the illness meant I could not work – fact is the medication sedated me so much that I could not keep my eyes open. I live on 7-8 hours now and am fully awake and rested. Broken sleep no longer bothers me and on really hot days I get up at first light to take my dog on long walks, as much for me as for her. Having a dog to walk with, just makes it all so much more enjoyable.

  • Great to see you on here David.

    While I have had this discussion with you before, and I agree that feeling suicidal is not a mental illness, I think one has to understand that the whole concept of mental illness has changed over recent years. The slightest feelings of sadness are now see as an incurable brain disease and a mental illness. Sure mental illness used to mean psychosis, or profound unremitting depression, but with the obsession with early intervention, especially in Australi, which means we treat everyone before they even show any of the behaviours that they classify as symptoms, everything is a mental illness, and that includes the slightest feelings of sadness, loneliness, etc, all of which we all experience at some stage or another, well maybe not our pat, but one wonders what if anything he actually feels.

  • I really admire your strength for continuing to do as you are doing. I do respect what you are saying, and I also respect that the people you are talking about do not yet see it as a problem. Given all that you have been trained and taught over decades it would be incredibly difficult to do as you are doing, and it would continue to go against everything the community expects of you. I can also imagine that families want a very quick fix, and that would make it even more difficult, as they have been led to believe by the media that a quick fix is possible, that a simple pill can fix these problems.

  • I thought psychiatrists were able to predict dangerousness. It is because of there predictive powers that they are given the legislative powers that they have. Society believes in their predictive powess.

    How is it that the psychiatrists who were treating all of these school shooters were not able to predict what was happening to them?? How could they have diagnosed them wrong?? Most of them were not on antipsychotics, just antidepressents. How could they not have known the person they were treating was psychotic?? I mean they do not require the person they are treating to tell them anything, they can predict these things, well that is what we are told.

    Instead of looking at untreated people, perhaps they should be questioning how the treaters got it so wrong????

    And if I am to take it seriously it also means that EVERY single mass murder in the world that has ever been committed has been done by someone with schizophrenia. It means that ALL criminals are mentally ill and all can be cured or at least controlled by these medications. How is it that people on these medications can do such things, are they not being treated???

    ALL of these perpetrators had theraputic doses of medication’s in their systems. It is not that they were not taking medications prescribed for them. They were taking them exactly as prescribed. ALL had sought and was recieving treatment. For all intents and purposes they were fully complaint and help seeking. Yet they blame them for not seeking and accepting treatment for a non existent brain disease????

  • Brilliant reply, wish I could word things this good!!!

    I love those so called recovery services, all they did was to tell me that I needed to recover from forced medication side effects. They were going to teach me to cook and clean, because they noticed I wasn’t!! When you are sleeping 22 hours a day and can barely move the other two hours, is it any wonder you don’t do anything!!?? But it was my fictional brain disease that caused me to do these things, the medications were just treating it!!! Amazing how I have recovered ALL functional abilities now that I am off medication!!! Yet even suggest lowering the dose of medication and so called recovery services tell you how dangerous that is, that you don’t understand the seriousness of your condition that you will die without them, etc. These were services who believed in my ability to live outside the hospital, not to do anything else. I certainly was not able to recovery to the point of a cure, no that was just wishful thinking. And of course can’t forget about there need to teach me how to “think properly”. Because I didn’t think like them I was defective with thinking and needed CBT classes to teach me how to think!!!

    The only people who need to recover, to think properly or the like is the mental health system itself!! I do worry sometimes (not!!) about how they are going to cope when they discover how wrong they were. Who is going to be there to help them. Maybe they can take some coctails of drugs to help them with it. That would be a very good use for them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • I have gained from you being here, in particular learning that there are psychiatrists that really do care about the people they are assisting and the wider industry in which they work. Thankyou for being so open.

    I do however have to comment on people not wanting help. I do not believe that people truly do not want help. They just fear what is being offered and in most cases that fear would be very grounded. Many of them would already have experienced some of the system in some way, even if just via school counsellors and most of those experiences have not been positive. In most cases the not wanting help, is about the most rational thing about them. It is grounded in very real and justified fears if they have had any contact at all with the system before.

    I also liken it to a a child learning to walk. You cannot make a child walk, and despite all the millions of things we do to try to make them walk earlier they all fail, and they continue to walk at about the same age. We just have to wait and be patient and let them develop at their own rate. It is the same here. People will be ready when they are ready. The most important thing is to be there for them, so that when they are ready to interact with you, you are there. Many have also experienced some form of violence, and for those it takes them much longer to trust someone.

    I will always be eternally grateful to a psychologist I saw some 25 years ago, who saw me, every week, for over 6 months before I would even tell her my full name, let alone give her a phone number, address or the like. Such things would not be allowed today where one has to complete a whole intake form before they would consider even making an appointment. Her response was to see that I needed the service more than most due to my fears. Her ability to be with me, and wait for me, was what enabled me to make the changes that I needed to make. Unfortunately I only saw her for 2.5 years and ended up in the menatl health system not long after that. Now the mental health system is all that exists.

  • I would agree with that. BUT we do know the parts of the brain involved in learning. We do know that the ONLY way to truly recover from trauma is to develop new experiences. If one has experienced every male they have ever have contact with raping them, telling them men don’t always rape will not work. They actually have to have experiences with men who do not rape for them to learn that. People learn from experience, and there beliefs are based on those experiences. Sitting four feet away from someone and telling them they are wrong does not work. Giving them new positive appropriate theraputic experiences does work. Want to teach someone that not everyone who brushes past them is going to hurt them, use massage. Sitting four feet away from them and telling them it, or telling them to think positively about it, will not do anything at all, which is why CBT fails so dismally in trauma. What we do know is that the parts of the brain invovled in memory and in particular in forming new memories are also parts that are blocked by antidepressents. People cannot form new memories, when the parts of the brain that are used for that purpose are being blocked. This is something that is known and many have said before. But when it comes to humans they blame something else, which brain scans can show what is really happening and there is work being done on PTSD with brain scans and the like, which does show what is really happening in the brain. One does not however scan brains every day, due to the risks involved – radiation in those amounts is not good for people, yet rats can show in daily amounts, what the brain scans of people are also showing.

  • It also shows that they do no assessment of people before they treat them. What symptoms was this innocent man showing. How was it that the person who was so in need of this treatment, could be mistaken for the average person??? If this is not an indiciation of just how stupid the system is I don’t know what is. I thought people were supposed to be hospitalised as a last resort, and only when they are acutely ill, and of course to only be on forced treatment orders as a total and utter last resort, but here they can mistake such an accutely and out of control person who needs to be both forcibly treated and locked up with the average person walking the street.

  • Totally accurate, it is also assumed that it is perfectly acceptable for those labelled as mentally ill to be treated this way. Does not matter if they have such side effects, only matters if they have the wrong person. They continue to believe that these fictional diseases are worse than any side effects of medication, often even when the medication has killed them – they then say, well they are better off dead, than living with xyz condition!! Yet most of these symptoms are created by them!!

  • Nice to see some work in this area finally happening. It is assumed that anyone with PTSD, must have depression and they are all doped up on antidepressents. Since they need a drug to cure everything they have to find something for PTSD too, which many claim is a purely biological and genetic condition, it just is sparked by a tramatic experience!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Although I fear they will simply start to drug them with something stronger, like antipsychotics, which is already happening way too often and that will be even worse.

  • A very well written piece and one that I agree with totally. As an outsider, it never ceases to amaze me that in the US it is easier to buy a gun than a loaf of bread. From what is being presented overseas, there are more gun shops in the US than grocery stores!! And of course as soon as any mass shooting happens the response from the population is to all go out and buy more guns. After any mass shooting gun sales increase in massive amounts. When such things happen in other countries, we question our police forces, and what they were doing, why they did not respond sooner, etc.

    Of course what is forgotten in all of this is that one does not have to take away the right to own guns, all they have to do is to take away the right to own certain types of guns. That is exactly what was done in Australia. In 1996 we had a mass shooting at a major tourist destination with over 30 people killed. We had had 4 mass shootings in the 4 years before that. Gun groups here, while not having the power of the NRA were all saying not us, bad people, not bad guns, but when the priminister sat down and met with them in person they realised they were not looking at getting rid of guns that 99.9% of them used in gun ranges for sports or hunting or the like. We also did not simply expect to get rid of them. We offered everyone compensation for ALL guns they wanted to hand back, even if they were still going to legal and even if they were illegal at the time. We tighened security for ALL goods coming into the country, to stop them from coming in. Hundreds of thousands of guns were handed in, and compensation was paid for each and everyone of them. Don’t just say give the guns back, pay them to give them back. ALL taxes were increased to pay for it. Children even handed in toy guns and there were cases of police officers pulling $5 notes out of there own pockets to give to children for it!! Schools and child care centres no longer allowed toy guns or any other such thing. That was the primary change that we made, to simply change the TYPE of guns allowed. After that we made changes to licensing that were Australia wide, instead of previous state based systems, we made changes to the laws regarding the keeping of guns, how many could be owned, etc. And they continue to change.

    There was a very slight increase in knife crime, BUT a person cannot kill a hundred people in a minute with a knife. It is much easier to disarm them, a person is much more likely to survive the attack.

    Just like the US and other countries we do have increasing rates of people on all sorts of psychotropic’s, and yes those people do become agitated, but they do not go out and shoot, by and large they kick things or punch people. Not much chance of killing a hundred people like that!!!

    I do not believe that one thing alone has caused the problems that are happening in the US. But the fact is the US has more guns per head of population than any other country, it is the only place whose solution to gun voilence is to go and buy more guns and to put them in the hands of more and more and more people, all of whom have no ability or idea of how to control and use the weapon that they have purchased. It is also the only place in which a person can legally own such high powered guns, with add ons that allow even more bullets to come out, faster and the like.

    One can keep the right to own a gun if they simply limit the types of guns. The types of guns used in these attacks are not something one uses at a riffle range, they are not something one goes hunting with, they are not something one uses for sports or the like. These guns were invented for one purpose and one purpose only and that is mass murder. If americans are going to claim it is there right to own a gun for the express purpose of mass murder, then they can hardly complain when others do the same.

    As an outsider I will never understand the gun culture of the US. It is beyond me how since that shooting, gun sales can have gone up and that thousands of people are now buying people guns as christmas presents. After our mass shootings, gun sales decreased and many gun owners, were the most supportive of the changes that were made, and were instrumental in the laws being changed.

  • But what help can one give someone if there is nothing wrong with them. Feeling sad has become a permenant life long brain disease, that needs to be treated!! We ALL feel sad at regular periods and we used to be allowed to work through them on our own, with family and friends. That is now incredily dangerous, in fact if I am believe the industry it is more dangerous than trying to treat cancer without a doctors assistance.

    There is a point to having assistance out there for people who really want it and might benefit from it, it is totally different to tell the whole world that they have a fictional life long brain diesase that they can cure, and that they will never ever be sad ever again. Yet that is exactly what the current system does. Very few people in the current system ever needed to be there. Most have become disabled by the system, which continues to make them worse, and that is ALL aspects of the system, therapy is just as toxic as medications are.

  • Yes, but when it comes from Patrick McGorry one has to question what is really means. He is the person in charge of Australia’s whole mental health system and has been publically adamant that antipsychotics can prevent psychosis.

    The people in this study, where labelled as being “at risk” of psychosis, not because they had ever shown any such symptoms of psychosis. At risk can mean for instance that if you have EVER been having a coversation with someone and were not able to find the exact word you were looking for, you still got the message across and found another word to use instead. But the fact that you could not think of the exact word at that times, menas you are at ULTRA high risk of developing psychosis!!!!!!

    After communtiy outrage here, mainly from the medical community, who says that these drugs should not be used on people who are not ill, he is now saying that perhaps people with these at risk symptoms, which is in effect the WHOLE population, we don’t need to place them antipsychotics. The fact that he would even consider doing a trail with such people,a nd having some of them on antipsychotics for that trail says something in itself.

    He is quite adamant that the SOLE cause of people deteriorating is that we do not interfene early enough and that we must ensure that people are forcibly medicated the SECOND they show any form of real psychosis. Waiting even one day can mean that they will die of this processive brain disease. Accorind to McGorry, antipsychotics, slow the progressive nature of schizophrenia, so people are able to function for longer.

    On one hand this is good, he has now decided that perhaps the whole population does not need to be on these medications, but this is not looking at anyone who has been diagnosed with a disorder, becuase they showed real symptoms.

    One of his primary purposes for interveing with this group is to ensure that they understand the importance of taking medication the second they show real symptoms of psychosis, so they do a great deal of psycho eduction and anyone who says thankyou for it, and thanks them for the information and says they understand it now, is seen as being better!!! NO ONE in any study has actually shown in decrease in the ultra high risk symptoms!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    And of course he already had most of them on antidepressents, which rather than possibly causing the psychosis in some of the people, would be acting as a preventative measure in the ones hwo did not get it!!!!!

    You cannot predict who will get psychosis and the signs and symptoms they are looking for are evident in everyone at some moment in time. We are all at risk of psychoiss, although the only ones with true psychosis, which is incredibly false beliefs and those psychiatrists and mental health professionals who believe in this crap!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Such a wonderfully written and very accurate piece that I can relate to totally. I have been free of mind altering substances for almost 12 months, but my body is still recovering and will be for some time yet. It was an incredibly agonising withdrawl, though I used benzo’s in small doses, at the peak times to help cope with the acute withdrawl of the antipsychotics, which were the most toxic to get off.

    As for my identity, I wonder if I will ever get that back. I am still seen by many as a former mental patient and I fear I will hold that label for life. The power they have over you never ceases to amaze me.

    I think I was finally able to see the truth, when after loosing a psychiatrist, psychologist and peer worker in the one week, and not coping well, the GP told me it was my underlying brain disease coming back and the stress of it had nothing to do with it!! I have never set foot back inside any place to get mental health treatment since and I have terminated the relationship with the GP. The new one would like to know my medical history, but I personally don’t think they have anything they need to know about me!! I don’t think I will ever trust any doctor again, they are all too happy to prescribe these pills for any condition at all, to label everything as being in your head, and to simply refer you off to psychaitry for more drugging. The worst is the forced treatment in the community. I have never understood how someone can be ‘sane’ enough to live in the community, but not sane enough to decide what toxic substances they want to put in there body. Sane enough to sign legal contracts, work, pay pills, taxes, etc, but not sane enough to decide what to put in there own bodies. Mind you it really is not needed that much, 99.9% of the population willingly swallow the pills in total belief of all that they are told

  • Thankyou for so accurately describing my life and that of so many people like me.

    Yet what does the system do? It continues to tell me I have a chemical imbalance in the brain and that ALL of my problems are caused by it. At most I am taught how to do things, no one looks at why I don’t do things.

    I still cannot hold a knife without dissocating, but no, that is my chemical imbalance in the brain, not my abuse, and so they drug me up and then teach me how to hold a knife and how to cut up a piece of fruit!!! Then I am labelled as non complaint for not doing it, when I dissociate yet again.

    And of course the labels that are handed to you to refusing to have any contact with your abusers!!!

    Much easier to label someone as schizophrenic when they acuse someone of sexually abusing them, than to possibly consider that the crime actually occured.

    Even when they admit you have PTSD, they then go on about the need to treat the biological aspects of the disease first, as there is no point in treating anything else, until the biological aspects have been treated first – and this is when they are treating you for PTSD!!!

    And they say I’m insane!!!!??????

  • The average life expectancy of those on these drugs is now about 45. That would be the reason to study this group, to see if they really are benefiting them!!?? Since they kill most of them before this age, then I think that means the side effects were starting befor then!!! Metabolic issues do start immediately, they just take time to become lethal!!

    I love how it has become too unethical to have a placebo group!!!

  • I agree with what you have said there. While I certainly believe that the side effects have always outweighted any benefits in anyone I have known, psychaitrists continue to say otherwise.

    First and foremost many of them believe that psychosis is a fate worse than death, that it is a degenerative neurological condition that will simply continue to get worse, and that the drugs halt that progression and allow people to remain at the current level of functioning. It keeps them stable, is the bullshit they give.

    They also use that as the argument for needing to predict who will become psychotic, so that we can put them on the drugs early, so they never become unwell and the drugs can maintain the level of functioning they currently have!!!

    According to psychiatrists nothing in the world can ever be as bad as psychosis. While the side effects might be life threatening and horrible they will never be as bad as the underlying disease state.

    Well these are the arguments being made by Australian Psychiatrists. It is beyond me where the thinking comes from, but it is there. Maybe some antipsychotics could help them to get over it??????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Alan Frances is not anti diagnosis, he does however acknowledge that it has gone too far. That is not bad, but he still believes that MOST diagnoses are very valid and accruate and do no harm to people. He is concerned about the diagnosis of people with conditions that verge on normal, ie, Psychosis Risk Syndrome, but he does not disagree with schizophrenia or feel that it would be wrongly diagnosed.

  • First Aid is supposed to be about keeping someone alive, until medical help arrives. Hence the argument that Mental Health First Aid can do the same. Problem is it does no such thing.

    The BIGGEST success of the program is that over 50% of people who attend the course, go to a doctor and get a prescription for drugs themsevles, usually for anxiety or depression that they did not know they have!!! How that can be seen as something good is beyond me. How that is “first aid” is beyond me.

    The ONLY thing the course does is to teach people how to diagnose these conditions, which has nothing to do with a lay person, and that we have these fantastic medications that are more effective than insulin for diabetes to treat them. Medication, medication, medication is the push.

    The ONLY thing that could be slightly first aid related is saying that in an acute crisis, you should call emergency services!! They specificaly state that if you see someone about to jump of a building you should call emergency services, which in the US is 911. If a person needs to go to a 20 hour course to learn that something is wrong with them!!

    What do people REALLY need to know. How do I respond to someone who is acutely psychotic, acutely suicidal, etc. Yes the person has called emergency services, as they are out of there depth and cannot cope, but what do they do in the meantime. If a person is unconcious you do not just call emergency services, you check for breathing and do CPR if needed. If a person is bleeding profusly you put pressure on the wound. This course does not teach a person what to do in such a situation. At most it says to try and stay calm. Again, nothing more than common sense. If you need to tell someone that they should call emergency services or try not to aggravate someone who is acutely unwell then you really do need psychiatric treatment.

    First Aid courses generally do not teach you how to diagnose heart disease, diabetes, or the like. What you are taught to do is to keep someone stable and until professional help arrives.
    IF this course is truly about being first aid, then it would acknowledge that lay persons do not need to know how to diagnose and treat conditions, that all they need to know is how to keep someone safe and calm until professional help arrives.

    BUT of course since the so called professionals treating these fictional brain diseases cannot keep calm themselves, and since the only thing they are interested in is diagnosing the whole population so they can drug everyone, then they are not doing anything first aid related.

    A more accurate label for this course would be basic mental health education. It is nothing more than that. It is education about a disease based model of mental health. There is nothing first aid about it.

    As an Australian it does not suprise me that Australians invented it. We are at the forefront of early and pre-emptive diagnosis. We now have compulsory mental heatlh checks for all 3 year olds, by general nurses and GP’s. And we are setting up psychosis risk syndrome clinics all across the countries, at massive costs to the taxpayer. Because we seriously believe that you can predict who will develop psychosis. Even the American Psychiatric Association has rejected it, saying it is simply not possible at present. But apparently Australia is going to prove them wrong.

    Australia’s mental health system is something to be ashamed of and mental health first aid is one example of that. One can only hope that the rest of our system is not picked up by the US, and elsewhere.

  • As a fellow Victorian I am well aware of the effects of the black saturday bush fire and did have friends directly affected. The work being done by them and that continues to go on is brilliant.

    BUT that work is not supported by those who support or promote mental health first aid. Mental Health first aid is the most shameful thing that was ever invented and I am ashamed to see it now being directed to the rest of the world.

    PLEASE do not confuse disaster recovery with Mental Health Fist Aid. They are two totally different things. One we do well the other is something to be incredibly ashamed off.

  • Very well said. But of course they still tell us that we are ill and will be for life. They tell us that we cannot do anything and will require this medication for life. Then they wonder, WHY we become depressed?? At least they have given some logical answers to questions. But I’m sure the solution is simply handing everyone diagnosed with schizophrenia, antidepressents, that is the standard treatment in Australia. I notice that they don’t go into that, just say that this may explain why in some cases!!!

  • Classic response of not my problem. No one is responsible because someone else should have been.

    The social worker was not trained, so is not responible, as the psychiatrist should have been supervising. The psychiatrists are not responsible, as they are only required to be involved if adverse events are found.

    The supervisors are not responsible, as they cannot know what everyone is doing every second of every day.

    And to some degree that is true. BUT of course one must only practice within there training and they must be held accountable for taking reasonable precautions to protect people. Doctors in hospitals do not supervise everthing a nurse does all the time, but they do need to do somethign to try and make sure that patients are being treated appropriately, according to the instructions they give. They must also visit the patient regularly to monitor side effects themselves and not simply leave it all up to nurses. This case is however, worse as Social workers have no training in medication, and yet they had no problem at all putting her in this role. She is responsible for practising at levels she is not trained to do. And of course those that PAID her to be in that role are also definately responsible for allowing her to be in that role. Above all else, when it comes to the LEVELS of errors made, here, one needs to be held responsible and acountable. And of course if one wants the profession to be respected, then they need to hold them to account. Can’t be much more shameful than to be a social worker at the moment. One wonders how many social workers are truly happy with the outcome here. Is that how they want to be seen??

  • If only things were that great and that simple. Of course it is much much easier for a person to not ask WHY. It is much easier to just blame the child, or blame the person and tell them to stop being defective.

    I was sexually abused as a child. I was constantly referred to psychologists and other therapists as they could not understand my behaviour. They never once tried to find out why I was acting as I was, as it was totally and utterly irrelevant. I was living a pedophile ring and therapists like you claim to be able to fix my problems, WHILE I remained living in the pedophile ring?? If you asked WHY then you might have found out why and been able to remove me from it.

    Then came the supposed help I got when I left. I was referred to recovery oriented services, as I needed to learn to cook and clean. Again why I did not do those things had nothing to do with anything. It was all just a part of my chemical imbalance in the brain.

    Why not consider it from my perspective. I had been cut and threatened with knives, so dissociated at the site of them. I had had my hands burnt on stoves and so dissocaited at the site of one. I had a vacuum shoved up my vagina and for some reason could not cope with them either. But no one asked why. Even when told WHY they told me it had nothing to do with anything. My issues were all caused by a defective brain. The solution was to teach me where the ‘on’ button was on the vacuum, when I run outside, dissocaited and was not able to respond, after the 6th session, they threw me out of the service, as I was treatment resistent.

    When someone bothered to listen to my story, make me safe, and slowly allow me to explore those things for myself, I began to recover. I could not however recover without someone acknowledging the WHY.

    To say that one does not need to know why is just incomprehensible. Of course it is much much eaiser to just blame the child, than admit the realities of the live the chilren are living and what adults are doing to them. Blaming a child is much easier than admitting the crimes adults commit against children. Dwelling on the past does not help anyone, but not knowing what is causing the problems does not help either. That does not mean using the past as an excuse for the present, but it does mean that one cannot help someone, without knowing the origins of the behaviour. But of course, it is much easier to blame the child, than to admit what adults do to them.

    How does living in a pedophile ring, not affect a child. How does it not matter what is happening to the child??

  • Vanessa they do not believe they are only doing half the job. They believe that there is scientific research to prove that these people need to be on these drugs for life, just like insulin for diabetes. No one studies how to withdrawl a person from insulin, so why bother learning how to withdrawl from these substances.

    Problem is they have nothing to support what they say, but what they think and believe is why they are teaching what they are.

  • I tried abrupt withdrawl, become a thousand times worse, ended up locked up and on forced treatment orders. Would be nice if I could legally be given the support to withdrawl abruptly, fact is I couldn’t. Hence when I was finally free legally I tapered over a period of 16 months, because if I ever become ill again while trying to go off drugs I would have been on forced treatment for life. It was hell, I hated it, although I can also say, that each time the medication dosage lowered, I become more and more alive.

    Every persons experience of withdrawl is different, every persons experience of being on drugs is different, as is the combination of the coctails they were on. I was on 5 when I tapered. Try going off 5 drugs cold turkey and tell me you do not need any form of support for that. Simply would not be possible. I did not choose to be on them. Drug addicts are offered specialised detox centres and yes, if I was lucky enough to be offered a detox centre, then sure I could have survived, fact is I wasn’t. I was instead taken in handcuffs by the police to the local psych ward, locked in seclusion and manhandled by security gaurds, while they forcibly treated me. According to you, I chose every bit of that. I hope you have some evidence to support your statement I choose that!???

    MOST people I have come across have had many tries at withdrawling and many of them ended up locked up as a result of an abrupt withdrawl, which is why they decided to go slowly when they were finally free.

    Haven’t said that, I also agree with Will there are times when abrupt is necessary to save a persons life. I know someone who the psychiatrist admits is dying on the medications they are on. They are locked up and it is all being forcibly admintistered. There solution is to taper them from the medication, before deciding on another one!!!!! Given that this person is in hospital, it is clearly OK to abruptly withdrawl her, but they are not doing that, even though they have admitted it is necessary.

  • In order to truly help someone to stop dissociating to exteme levels one has to understand WHY they were dissociating to begin with. What you wanted to achieve was symptom reduction, just the same as one sedates someone with antipsychotics. It does nothing at all to help a person over the longer term.

    Most of the most respected people in the trauma field do not agree with hypnosis. It asks a person who has usually suffered profound trauma at the hands of another person to allow a person they barely know and have little reason to trust to control them. That is not healthy for anyone in that situation. They need to learn to trust people at there own time in there own way. Trust is something that cannot be forced onto someone. Hyponosis makes it much easier to rape or otherwise abuse someone. A person who is that vulnerable should not be placed in that situation.

    As for self hypnosis. A person who is truly in a dissociative would not be capable of such a thing. We do unerstand enough about the biology of trauma to know how people react to things. When they enter these states they are entering very primative states, which is much like a very young infant. They have no self control and no ability to calm themselves down. When a person is in an acute trauma they cannot do such a thing. The work of Bruce Perry at the Child Trauma Academy is the best example of that. If you have not read his work, you should. His first book the Boy who was raised as a dog is as much an essential reading for anyone in the menatal health field as is Whittakers work.

    Of course the most clear sign of anything should have been that she continued to get well in hosptial. Ie, remove her from the family and she recovers, put her back into the family and she falls apart again. but then again, psychiatry is not capable of considering those things.

    I do however agree that psychiatrists only ever see what they want to see. The fact that you can have 10 psychiatrists examine the same person and all come up with totally different diagnosises, says it all. If they do by pure chance diagnose the same, you can be 100% certain that they would treat it differently!!

  • I really admire your courage with being open on this site and I am thankful to know that other psychiatrists are also questioning.

    I do also believe that Torrey has very little scientific understanding, but he can’t understand that. Put simply anyone who disagrees with him is labelled as anti-scientific, even though he has no science to back up what he says.

  • The difference between Bob and Torrey is that Bob has the science and the research on his side, Torrey has none. The fact that you believe in these drugs and have not read Bob’s work, means that you are simply not able to comprehend what this is all about.

    Bob is more than willing to take criticism. Problem is NONE has ever been factual. The ONLY criticism is that we know this stuff works, because we say it does. NO ONE has the right to tell someone to take medications that have NO scientific basis to them. You believe in these drugs and promote there use, because you are too scared to read the truth and find out what is really going on. Much easier to support those who employ you and to tell the people you supposedly support that they need these drugs to keep them well, even though EVERY bit of scientific research says the absolute opposite.

    If a doctor or anyone else tells me I need to take medications they better be prepared to back it up with scientific research. Even the FDA does not approve of ANY of these medications as maitanence treatments, although you actively promote them.

    Bob has no problem with any court case and is more than willing to debate anyone in the media or elsewhere. Problem is none of the others are willing to turn up. Only have to consider how the supreme court has ruled that forced treatment in the community is illegal, as NO ONE could provide ONE scientific study to support its use. Sure they could bring in the top psychiatrists from all over the world, but they could not produce ONE study to support what they were proposing. Yet we have many that show that these drugs don’t work and people get well when off them.

    Bring on the court case, bring on the public debate. Bob would love it for it would get this information out there even more. He has science on his side. Something that psychiatry and you do not have.

  • And we know and have proof that trauma does cause massive changes to the brain. http://childtrauma.org/images/stories/Articles/mindbrain.pdf

    Something that their drugs are not doing to do anything at all to help. But of course admitting that people experience traumatic events is not something they want to admit. Much easier to blame them and tell them it doesn’t affect them.

    And of course if a genetic boilogical disease existed, it would have been wiped out by now. First they sterialised thousands of people, millions of others died from neglect and now they are killed by medication side effects and of course the drugs also prevent people from having sex anyway.

    A brain disease would have been found by now and if it did exist, it would also prove that psychiatrists are not necessary and that it belongs with neurologists.

  • No one says that these drugs cannot cause such responses. BUT in these cases such things did not happen. These people were in FULL and TOTAL control right up to the second before the offence took place and the second it ended, they were also in FULL and TOTAL control. Fact is NO DRUG or MEDICATON or ANYTHING ELSE, allows a person to be in full control for days and weeks on end, and only loose control for 2 seconds. The case you presented the person was in a psychotic state, that was not a psychotic state for 2 seconds, it was a psychotic state for DAYS on end. There is NOTHING in ANY of the cases presented here, or in 99.9% of the cases in which this is used as an excuse.

    Please explain how anyone can experience a drug induced psychotic state that lasts for a total of 2 seconds, from a substance that they have consumed daily for weeks, and months, and was last consumed over 12 hours before the offence took place.

    Drug induced psychosis does not last for 2 seconds. It lasts the WHOLE the time the person is ON the substances. HOW was it that these people which you claim are ALL innocent, were not in a psychosis at ANY time except for the 2 seconds in which the crime took place. How could it have resolved itself 100% by the time the offence was over, yet they had absolutely no idea at all of what went on at the time of the attack.

    You and others like you keep saying that DRUG induced psychosis can last for less than 2 seconds, and can occur at any time after a substance is taken. PLEASE provide some evidence of such claims. And also please provide a psychiatrist or anyone else that would be willing to seriously claim that a person can have absolutely no side effects from a medication for days, weeks and months. They can be in total and utter full control of ALL that they are doing, and then suddenly without any new substance entering there body they can loose ALL control and have absolutely no idea at all of what is going on, but the second the offence is committed, they immediatley regain FULL 100% control again. You claim there is PLENTY of evidence to support such situations. So the question is, provide the evidence to support it.

    What you are doing is linking to things in relation to drug induced psychosis. That is NOT and NEVER has been something that lasts for 2 seconds. Hence you must be claiming that these cases are caused by something else. What else has caused these things. Or how has a new form of drug induced psychosis occured. Does that mean that I can induce a substance and 20 years later commit a crime and say the drug I took 20 years before caused it. WHEN does the drug I took stop being responsible for the actions of someone. Since the time of ingestion has nothing at all to do with how a person fucntions or acts.

  • For those saying the drugs did it, the underlying issue you need to be able to explain is this: How is any drug or substance able to cause a person to be able to function at a much higher level for days, weeks and months on end and without any issues at all for them or those around them and then suddenly without any warming at all the substance, without any additional levels of it, or it take in any different ways causes them to loose all control for a total of 2 seconds. At the end of that 2 seconds they immediately regain 100% control of everything and are able to function once again, at normal or above normal levels??

    That is one amazing substance and all I can say is that I would love to see the science justifying how a substance can do that to someone.

    Agitation is a common side effect, difference is those that experience it, experience it ALL the time. Suicial thoughts are also a very common side effect, but again those that experience them, experienece them ALL the time. These drugs can make people out of control, difference is they are out of sinc, ALL the time. They are not in perfect control for weeks and months and then loose 2 seconds and then in perfect control again.

  • Any country that allows people to be forcibly treated in the basis of some behavioural traits is not just. One cannot lock someone in prison, just because they do not like how they are acting. The person must have done something that hurt someone first, they are then innocent until proven guilty and a judge and more often than not a jury is involved in the decision.

    They talk about treating people that lack capacity, but what does capacity mean? If I agree with everything they say, I am deemed to have capacity, if I do not I lack capacity?

    People in a coma cannot make informed decisions, very young children/infants cannot make informed decisions. That does not allow a doctor to just do as they like to them. No, they are required to get informed consent from there next of kin, family or the like. If necessary courts will appoint a a Guardian for them. Of course there are issues with this and most families will agree with anything a doctor says, but it is still very very different to what happens in mental health. It would always be safe for a loved one to make decisions for someone, rather than a so called doctor who has met them very briefly. Having said that though I know that what psychiatrists dished out to me was nothing compared to what my family would have and did do.

    One has to question WHY they need to use seclusion, and both mechanical and chemical restraints, if there drugs treat the conditions just like insulin for diabetes!! After all one does not require any such thing to treat a diabetic. Once the insulin is given they are normal within half a second!!! If these drugs balance the chemicals in the brains, why do they take so long to work, why do they not work for so many people.

  • I could not have said it better myself Steven. I admire people who have the courage to question the status quo and who can see that what they have been told is not helping. Doctors need to work in partnership with people and without it trust cannot and will not develop.

    Unforuntatley I have seen way too many Torrey’s in my lifetime and then they wonder why we don’t want anything to do with them.

  • Totally agree with that. The psychiatric profession largely ignored Mad In America when it was released in 2000. Not totally, but they did not get massivley up in arms about it. Since the release of AOE, the opposite could not be more true. Some have had the courage to question their current practices and consider whether it is really helping people. Others have just started attacking people for even questioning the research. If they had the research to back up what they did, this would not exist. There would be no need for the books that have been written, etc. Fact is they have no research and they know very very well that what is written in the absolute truth. But the truth threatens everything about them, it threatens there livelihoods, and everything they have believed in. Most medical students refuse to enter psychiatry as they do not consider it a real science – they can see through the bullshit from the beginning. How the rest of them make it through medical school and beyond is showing just how bad our medical educational practices are in the world. That any of them can seriously believe that one can develop a treatment for something that does not even exist is beyond me. How can an educated person do that.

    Totally agree that everytime I read something attacking this site, or Whitakers work I know that we are on the right track as it scares them and they have nothing to back up what they are saying.

  • I am not saying that one should commit suicide, if they have committed murder. And of course it is very very common for people to become remorseful when on death row. People will do anything when they face their own death. They are also very good at telling people who they believe can help them.

    I personally do not believe in the death penality and am proud to live in a country that does not have it. We have very few people sentenced to life imprisionment, the vast majority of our murders are given release dates, be they in 20 or 30 years time, although most will also be on parole for life and hence under some level of supervision.

    There is however a big difference between not feeling that you should in any way be punished for the most voilent and horrendous act, and committing sucide. To say that you can say, hey guess what I killed 100 people and I don’t give a shit and I don’t think I should in any way, shape or form be held accountable for ANY of those actions is a far far cry from normal behaviour.

    While it is true that people are usually prescribed these drugs they have also been on them usually for weeks, months. In ALL the cases I am aware of NONE of them have EVER gone back to a doctor to complain about side effects or the like. When I was prescribed antidepressents and I felt like shit and was ready to kill myself, I was on the phone to doctors and demanding appointments every single day. If I had thoughts of voilence against others, that is not something I would “happily” live with and not give the slightest bit of concern about. The other reality is the affect the drugs had no me was ALL the time, not for 2 seconds, which is what is being claimed in ALL of these cases. I hear but they had immediate remorse afterward? HOW?? How can they have been so outt control for one second and so in total control the next second because of some toxic substance. That is what is not adding up. People rarely if ever commit serious crimes without some level of alcohol or drugs in there system, but the fact is they were out it for a period of time. They do not claim the alcohol only affected them for 2 seconds, the PCP only affected them for 2 seconds, and yet that is exactly what is being said here. They were in total and utter control of everything that was going on around them right up the second of the crime, including the planning of it, and of course they were also in total control the second after the crime? That is not and never has been a side effect of these drugs.

    These drugs can and do cause aggitation. Difference is it is a CONSTANT feeling, not a one second feeling, which is what is being claimed in EACH and EVERYONE of these cases.

  • Having said that there lives are longer and better, as families cannot afford the medications, and they do not have forced community treatment. Hence once out they are not medicated. The sense of community they have and not the individulistic nature of the american society, also gives them a community in which they are supported for who they are, and which helps enormously in them recovering.

  • A risk to themselves and others, and how on earth do they determine that. A person holding a gun is deemed OK by the police as they did not shoot you, but the psychiatrist can say anything about a person without any evidence at all and they are suddenly a danger to themselves and others. And of course a danger to oneself is refusing to take medication, so it defeats the whole purpose of the laws.

    Chinese dissidents are drugged with heavy tranquilizers, which is why they have no money for anything else. They spend too much on conrolling everyone and giving them brain altering treatments!!!

  • Duane, it is true that these drugs can cause SOME people to go out of there mind. BUT this is where it ends.

    Out of your mind, means exactly that. It does not mean that you are in 100% full control of each and everyone of your actions for months leading up the crime, including the planning of the attack, and that you are in total 100% control of your actions the second after the attact and for eternity there after. Yet this is what you claim.

    In EVERY SINGLE ONE of the crimes in which people are saying the “drugs made me do it”, they were in total 100% control of EVERYTHING, INCLUDING PLANNING THE ATTACKS!!!! Sorry but if someone is so far out of there mind that they have no control of there actions it is very obvious to EVERYONE around them, and no one would say anything else.

    If I am to believe you and others like you, then these drugs do as wonderful a job as the pharmacuetical companies claim. They calm people down, so they can concentrate like never before. They can plan out the most initmate details of anything at all, in ways that were simply not possible before the attacts. Except you claim that the ONLY things they are capable of planning and mass murder?? Doesn’t quite make sense, and doesn’t add up. They spend months and often YEARS planning these attacks, they order in supplies, they organise the location, they organise the events surrounding it, right down to the very last second. How can a person “out of there mind” do things along those lines. Fact is they can’t.

    These drugs can push someone over the edge, difference is these people were not pushed over the edge. EVRYONE of these crimes was VERY VERY CAREFULLY PLANNED. That is not someone out of there minds. That is someone in full and total control of everything going on around them.

    And of course the response of these people afterward does not show remorse. Someone who is truly remorseful cannot live with what they have done. These people instead ask for get out of jail free cards!! Any real human being would be killing themselves.

    Why don’t you look at the statistics for train drivers who kill someone who jumps in front of the moving train. Over half of them never work again, over 10% kill themselves because they cannot live with what they have done. Are they responsible for not being able to stop 100 tonnes of steel sliding along steel?? No human being would say they are, but they feel guilty.

    As a child I had a friend whose mother never drove. She was infact scared of getting in any car at all, and rarely if ever walked outside. I never understood why, until I was a teenager. Just after my friend was born, her mother was driving when a 2 year old run out from between 2 parked cars and my friends one run over and killed the child. NO ONE blamed the woman. There were hundreds of witnesses, including the child’s parents who had the common sense to say it was our fault for allowing our child out there, she was not at fault. No amount of counselling or anything else could help her. She would never allow herself to drive again. She blamed herself decades later and could not live with herself and nothing could make her see differently. The parents of the child who died a few years later even offered to pay therapy costs for her, such was there distraught over the way she was coping. It did nothing. Fact is she felt guilty and she placed herself in her own prison for life.

    One half decent psychiatrist I knew, had for a number of years worked in forensic psychiatry. They started believing that the high doses of medications, and the cominations of them (she happily prescribed them alone and in low doses!!) had contributed to them committing these crimes. She really wanted to help them. What she got was something very differently. The ONLY remorse shown by any was in court and/or to the police. They were not willing to take any responsibility for any actions at all. She did in the thousands of people she saw and assessed come across two who were drug affected, but by a illicit drugs and prescribed medications, a lethal comination. They were so psychotic as to have no concept of anything at all. They could not even find a toilet and could not feed themselves. They did not medicate them, but rather withdrew them and allowed them to sobar up. When they came aware of what they had done they became so acutely suicidal that nothing could persuade them otherwise. They had to restrain them and/or keep them in isolation and under at least 2 on one supervision (as one person was never enough to watch them) at all times for over 3 years. 10 different therapists of all manner of persusians could not change there views. In the end they removed the controls, knowing they would kill themselves as what they were doing was murdering them while they were alive.

    The simple fact is NO real human being can go out and commit murder and then say ” guess what I murdered 100 people, but I don’t give a rats arse about it”. Yet that is what this man and others who say the “drugs made me do it” are saying. If they were truly remorseful they simply what not be able to live with what they have done. There is no way at all I could live knowing that I had murdered someone. I would want to die and I do not for one second believe that anything at all would ever change that. I would never ever for one second want to be alive knowing I had killed another human being. I would punish myself for life. These people could not care less, and yet ALL of the attacks were very very carefully planned right down to the millisecond. That is not the actions of someone outta there mind. Outta your mind does not enable you to plan your actions. And if planning to such amazing lengths is what these drugs do, then you are giving them reason to prescrib them more, after all they would do a great deal to improve school performance, work focus and the like.

  • I could only dream of a court in Australia having that much insight!! Ours are quite content to forcibly drug those only deemed to be “at risk” of developing psychosis. In fact our legislation states that having the capacity to consent and refusing to give consent is reason for forced treatment!! They believe that no sane person would ever refuse to any form of psychiatric treatment, including ECT.

  • Agreed totally. If it was not for MIA, I would totally feel that way. Yet to find anyone in Australia who actually questions any of this stuff at all.

    Here they say that medications are only responsible for about 5% of the health problems that these people face. Diabetes is caused by the person, heart disease is caused by the person, etc, etc. The fact that the average dosage of drugs here is 2 times the maximum recommended limit that the drug companies themselves advocate, has nothing to do with anything. Side effects do not really exist and are ALWAYS incredibly mild in comparison to the underlying “disease”. And of course we have the forced treatment of those at risk of psychosis, which is anything at all!!! There are many people who are opposed to treating those at risk with antipsychotics, which is a massive start in the right direction.

  • The one thing that always amazed me when I read Mad in America and has been obvious in my own lifetime anyway, is that psychiatrist have ALWAYS claimed that anyon who does not like their treatments, which they later admit were tortorous, cruel, etc, were all signs of Anosognosia. They claimed that people who did not want ECT without an anesethic were suffering from Anosognosia, as it would not affect them at all. They claimed that those who did not want drowning therapy, spin therapy, blistering, burning, insulin coma, etc were all signs of the underlying brain disease talking, and proof of Anosognosia!! In my lifetime they have claimed that those that did not want first generation drugs were suffering from it, but they now claim to be able to cure it with second generation drugs!!!! It is now OK to not want to take first generation, they now admit that those drugs were bad, wrong, caused side effects, etc. Yet any half decent research says that first generation are slightly more tolerable than second generation, but that is totally irrelevant, not wanting second generation is a sign of anosognosia, but not wanting first generation is just a part of the side effect profile of the drugs!!!

    Still trying to work out why any of these treatments ever had to be removed since they ALL managed to cure the disease and they all had no adverse affects and anything the patients complained about were simply part of their brain disease!! If they were ethical based treatments, why does psychiatry ty and distance themselves from them, and why NOW say they were wrong??

    How can anyone design a drug to treat a condition that does not exist?? In order to develop antibiotics one first had to know what Bacteria was. They had to be able to put bacteria into a test tube and then and only then could they put in different substances to find one that killed it. Since one cannot put schizophrenia into a test tube, in fact there is no way of diagnosising it at all as we do not even know what it is, or whether it is even one condition, or actually a condition at all, one cannot develop a drug to treat it. Sedating one and shutting down the whole body is not treating a condition, it is simply creating a whole different set of problems.

  • Torrey believes that ANYONE who has ever recovered was wrongly diagnosed. With a profession that can get the diagnosis as wrong as he does, given the amounts of people who do recover, then one wonders how they can possibly expect us to believe anything else they say. Surely if the diagnosis was as wrong as they claim, I mean surely 25 years after one has recovered, should be proof enough that one has recovered they still refuse to change the medical records, but they still insist that they diagnosis was wrong?? If it is wrong then why not change it??

  • It needs to be understood that the person with the HIGHEST level of Anosognosia is E Fuller Torry himself. Afterall he believes without any shadow of a doubt that Schizophrenia is a 100% biological based brain disease. He is a trained doctor and psychiatrist and yet has NO medical evidence at all to justify what he says. IF a doctor or anyone else wants me to believe that I have some medical condition they better be prepared to back it up with medical evidence. NO ONE can diagnose a brain disease sitting four feet away from someone with a pen and paper. And no REAL doctor would claim to be able to do so. Yet that is exactly what Torrey says.

    IF what is said on this site is so threatening, then why not simply refute what we say with REAL scientific research. PROVE the brain disease, come up with boilogical based tests, and then he can say that these are brain diseases. The fact remains that centuries of research have proved no such diseases exist. The most intricate of brain scans show no differences until AFTER a person is medicated. That is not diagnostic proof. NO other medical profession treats a person for something they have no proof exists. Instead they perform REAL tests and then and only then do they propose to offer treatments. They also acknowledge that sometimes the treatments are worse than the condition itself and that only the person concerned has the ability to decide whether the benefits outweight the negatives.

    Sedating someone to the point of unconciousness does not take away the psychotic symptoms, it just stops them from being in front of the persons face. The person is so sedated they are unable to function at all. They cannot walk down the street, they cannot do anything at all except sleep all day and all night. May as well give someone a lethal injection if that is what you want a person to live like.

    How is it that psychiatrists and other mental health professioanls claim to be able to know what is and what is not true in a persons beliefs. How do you know that a person’s beliefs truly are false. I mean lets not forget that psychiatrists believed at one stage that a black who did not want to be a slave was mentally ill as they would ALL want to be slaves, it would be impossible for them to not want to be.

    When do they plan on medicating children for believing in Santa Clause, when they cannot prove that he is real. When does something become a mental illness. When is something allowable to be believed and something not allowed to be believed. Why are psychiatrists, such as Torrey allowed to believe that a condition called schizophrenia is a proven brain disease without any evidence at all to back it up?? Why is he the thought police, allowed to decide what a person can and cannot think about.

    As for the woman in the park, has anyone ever thought of WHY she ended up there. 99.9% of people who are eventually diagnosed with schizophrenia seek help, BEFORE it is forced onto them. When they reject the help that is offered it is all explained as a part of there diseased brain. BUT they DID seek help. They did and I would dare to say in all cases do seriously want help, they just do not want what is being provided. There is a massive difference between not wanting help and not wanting what is being done to you. Again lets not forget where Anosognosia first was invented by psychiatry. They said that a person who did not want to be span at thousands of times a minute was not aware of what was needed. People who did not like drowing therapy did not know what needed. People who did not like being burned, having blisters raised on the sculp, etc, it was ALWAYS the brain disease talking. Again when patients did not want ECT without an anesethic it was the disease talking, when they did not want insulin coma therapy, labotomy, etc, etc, it was ALWAYS the disease talking. ALL of these things cured these diseases, so why not still do them. Psychiatry now claims to be better and more informed and more scientific, but they use the EXACT same excuses as were used decades ago. Do psychaitrists of today, seriously believe that anesethic is not necessary for ECT, as the brain diseases of these people make it unncessary?? Do they seriously believe that drowing therapy is ethical, that burning people, locking them in cages, whipping them, blistering them, etc is all perfectly ethical and legal and has no negative effects on the person. If the person has the exact same beliefs about treatments today as they had 100 years ago, then why is today’s treatments so acceptable of those ones of the past are ones they do not wish to be associated with.

    Above all where is the evidence that these drugs will cure this woman’s so called delusional beliefs 100% and that the side effects will only be mild??

    Treat people as human beings and they will go back when they need help again. Treat them like animals and they will respond like animals, not difficult to comprehend, just common sense.

  • Misdiagnosis is a common scenario. E fuller the one who advocates community treatment orders and the like and says it is all a brain disease as decided the Joanne Greenberg the woman who wrote I never promised you a rose garden was actually wrongly diagnosed and that was the whole reason she was able to recover, as no one with scizophrenia is ever able to recover!!!

    You don’t find real doctors doing such a thing. When a person with terminal cancer recovers they don’t say, actually you never had really bad cancer. They just call it a miracle. At least they admit they had no idea of how it happened. Psychiatrists on the other hand wont admit to miracle cures of schizophrenia, no it was just a mistake. Given the amount of mistakes they make, one questions how they are legally allowed to force treatment onto anyone!!

  • In Australia ALL of our police recieve so called special training to help such people. It is the most pathetic thing possible and has only made things a thousand times worse. The training is along these lines. It is important for them to understand that some people have brain diseases that are caused by chemical imbalances in the brain. We do have medications to treat them that are MORE effective than insulin for diabetes but their brain disease means that they do not understand the need for them to take this medication each and every day for the rest of their lives!! Add to that they are then trained in how to diagnose someone!! They are trained in the primary diagnoses if Depression, Bipolar, Schizophrenia, Borderline Persoanality Disorder, Anxiety, etc. And then they start to diagnsoe every second person that walks down the street, they even start to diagnose each other. Mental health professionals call this a good thing. It even has been known to make some of them realise they need antidepressents to treat their own symptoms of mild depression or anxiety and that will apparently make them ‘better’ police!! Given that the side effects of these medications are aggitation and suicide, I hardly think that is good for a police officer to be on!!! But no one in Australia will acknowledge any of the side effects. We do not even acknowledge the risk to teenagers and we hand them out like candy!!! Police are the ambulances of choice when transporting someone to a psych ward. With public outcry about that they now forcibly anethitise people so they can be taken in for an assessment interview!!! At least in the police car they did not have more drugs forced into them!!!

    The simple fact is police should be trained to talk to ALL people first. Aggression does not help anyone. Two wrongs do not make a right. Just because someone has been aggressive does not mean that we should respond to aggression, when we can safely contain them without it. No one will ever know why someone has reacted as they are and we need to always take the benefit of the doubt. If someone is holding a knife, they can in 99% of cases be talked into putting it down. May take time but it can happen. Why should a person be killed or seriously injured, just because they are holding a knife. Screaming at someone rarely creates cooperation, unless they are fully functioning law obiding citizens to begin with. Hostage situations are the classic example. They bring in trained negotators. Why not have them at all times??

    By all means extend the training of negotators and that will not be a bad thing. But this is about training them in mental health and one can only guess what that means. We know who will do the training!! And simply having the police begin to cart everyone off to psych wards does not help either.

    Our psychiatric wards here, now have more security guards than clinical staff. Clinical staff will not talk to anyone and will not listen. Classic example. A person was hearing voices telling them that people were going to kill them. Rather than go and ask them what was going on, the next thing they knew they saw six security guards and a nurse with a hyperdermice needle running towards them. They were manhandled to the ground, stripped naked, injected and shoved into a seclusion room. Fact is clinical mental health staff cannot talk to those who are unwell, so why do they criticise the police when they are not able to do it!! Perhaps they should start training themsevles before they start expecting the rest of the population to do something that they themselves cannot do.

    treat people as you yourself would want to be treated. When you make out that people are dangerous to other people and not capable of making decisions people respond in an aggressive way. It is also why ALL the antistigma campagins have not worked and have instead worked to INCREASE stigma. If you told them that they are simply having a hard time at the moment, people relate and are sympathetic. Tell them they have a brain disease that makes them dangerous and they also respond, but not how you want them to.

  • They day they begin to acknowledge this stuff will be a day I could only hope to experience. What amazes me is the the prescribing information they are required to give to doctors does actually list 99% of this stuff, as side effects, but they still ignore it all.

    And of course even if they have the courage to admit it, they do say, “but the underlying disease was so so so much worse”. At least I was alive when I had the problems that bought me to them. I can’t say I was fully alive when I left them!!!

  • While ALL psych drugs are hard to wean off and all SSRI’s are hard to wean off, Effexor is one of the worst. You may want to try moving her to another one, Prozac or Zoloft, come to mind. They have longer half lives and so seem to be slightly easier to come off. Not easy in any sense of the word, but in most cases the best of the bad bunch.

    Anything that comes in a tablet form is going to be easier to get off, as you can half, and I have even cut into quarters the minimum dose tablet.

    Another thing to try is to lower the dosage every second day and then the day in between take the same dose as you are currently on. It lowers it slower than it happening all at once. One day they get a lower dose, but then before anything major can happen in the body, they get the same dose the next day.

    Any lowering of the dosage is a good step and is good for ones health. Any dosage reduction will be better for surgery. Of course it would be a great if one was not on any at all, but the lower they are, the better they will be.

    Some have also found using some benzo’s for a few days to cope with withdrawl symptoms helpful. Benzo’s are addictive, and they at least admit to that, but in low doses for 2-3 days not going to cause any major addiction.

    There are of course many other things you can do to improve the success of surgery. Increasing exercise levels to ensure one is as fit as they can be will help – but don’t overdo it and damage yourself in the process. And of course doing all you can to improve diet and to eat as healthy as possible is also important.

  • Yet another article to tell us of the risks of SSRI’s. Problem is that I keep being told that those problems are solved by placing people on SNRI’s. The second generation of blockbuster antidepressents is not going to solve these problems, if anything the SNRI’s are more toxic and have more side effects, just like we now know about the second generation of antipsychotics. Why do people continue to believe that they can find happiness in a pill!!!

  • Common sense says they are toxic to every single cell in the body!! Any drug that is designed to shut down the whole brain, cannot be expected to not shut down the rest of the body, and the fact is they are designed to shut down the whole brain, that is exactly what they wanted to achieve, turning people into puppets!!

    How doctors are not able to work that out is beyond me!!! They are supposed to be the most highly educted on the workings on the body, yet here I am having failed 10th grade science and I can work it out!!! Mind you I think the only reason I failed was because I was so doped up on medication that I was not able to read the books or to do the experiments, as I kept dropping things!!!

  • You hit the nail on the head and I was going to suggest the same thing, a list of organs or body parts not affected, but as you say, probably not possible!!!

    Yet they still call these safe and effective drugs and claim that the disease is worse than the medications!!??!! Still trying to work out how something that is not even a disease can be worse than medications that shut down every organ in the body.

    What also amazes me is that other branches of medicine don’t consider any of this. The amount of people I know with supposedly unexplained physical problems, having every test imaginable, as well as treatments, and they just cannot work out why it is happening. They are ALL on psychotropic medications, but no one considers the links!! I guess though when every single person you see is on these medications, along with about half the population, then it would be pretty hard to consider such a thing!! And I guess half of them are probably on them too!!

  • Given the role Patrick McGorry has played in these guidelines nothing should be suprising. For those that do not know who this guy is, just be thankful your governments are not following his lead. The Australian Government worships the ground he walks on, is spending BILLIONS of dollars to set up these early intervention services to treat those supposedly “at risk” of psychosis, before it even begins and this does include with antipsychotics. MOST other proponents in the early intervention field in the rest of the world are very cautious of the idea that you can predict psychosis, but not Patrick McGorry. He claims that if you have ever had a time when you could not think of the exact word you wanted to say, even if you could get your meaning and message across that you are at ultra high risk of psychosis and should be forced to take antipsychotics for life. He places child abuse victims in CBT, so they can learn that their beliefs about being abused were just figments of there imagation, and all they need to do is the think exactly how the therapist thinks and all will be perfectly fine. CBT is based on the premise that everything is caused by faulty thinking. That the therapist is an expert at knowing everything a person should be thinking and that the person needs to think exactly as the therapist tells them. It is so beyond belief as to be stupid. It is used extensively to help people to understand the chemical imbalance in the brain they have and why they need to take these medications for life. A person’s thinking is related to their experiences, if you want a person to think differently you need to give them different experiences. If you want a child who has been raped to believe that not all men will hurt them, you need to give them positive and safe experiences with men. It is not going to happen by telling them that they are wrong to think as they do. Thinking is not wrong, it is simply what it is.

    CBT is very acceptable, it is as close to the diseased brain model you can get. Just say the person has diseased thinking and it is all OK. Other therapies require you to look at what is going on for someone, but they don’t wnat to do that, much easier to just tell them they are defective. When CBT works the therapist has not done true CBT. CBT done by manuals as it should be, has excessively high drop out rates, as most people experience it as traumatic and abusive.

    Like others I also have a problem with this idea that we can somewhere prevent a non existant condition from taking hold. Even if you could prevent psychosis, one would first have to know what psychosis is. Since they do not know what psychosis is, that is simply not possible. We also know that ALL research that shows changes in the brain has been done on those on medications. NO research ANYWHERE in the world has ever shown any changes or differences in those that were not medicated. But like everything they see schizophrenia as something that is resembling medication side effects. They need them medicated early as otherwise none will ever get schizophrenia as the symptoms are based on those on medications!!

    And of course we see the ties these people have to drug companies. The evidence is that first generation antipsychotics are slightly more tolerable, but they continue to argue that the new ones, that are still on patent have less side effects. Again there is NO evidence of this. All the evidence is the absolute opposite. Drug them up and get paid big bucks from drug companies is all that they care about. How they can seriously believe that these drugs can help anyone is beyond me.

    Of course what they fail to recognise is that any benefits are based purely on them using lower doses of medications. The higher the dosages the more disabled the person becomes. And they claim this is due to early intervention, it is in fact due to the fact that they are not even psychotic yet!! How much does it take to sedate someone that is not even in full psychosis??

    They did initially claim that with early intervention the people would be discharged from services and just recieve medications from GP’s for life, after about 18 months in the service. They are now finding they need a minimum of 5 years and of course that a whole range of other services must also be provided. We already know that if you never give them antipsychotics to begin with people will be free from services in the 18 months, but they are not willing to look at what is happening with Open Diaglouge in Western Lapland, Finland. Soteria did not require 5 years and of course no medications were required.

    WHY are they not able to see past their own eyes??

  • I only wish the Australian government would realise what this research is showing. They are currenlty rolling out massive early psychosis centres around the country, at a cost of billions of dollars, all to prevent psychosis. And of course drugs are a part of that treatment. This video clip, shows what they classify as someone at risk of psychosis. If that is not 99.9% of the population I do not know what is. What is even scarier is that MOST mental health professionals seriously fully support this role out and the diagnosis. There is outrage that the American Psychiatric Association has declared publically that it will not be in the DSM5. But they have also said that it will not stop them from treating the disease, as they know that it works, and we supposedly can’t wait for the rest of the world to catch up!!!
    http://speedupsitstill.com/patrick-mcgorrys-ultra-high-risk-psychosis-theory-fails-common-sense-test

  • But of course the biological zealouts are still convinced that biomarkers are going to create “cures” for all mental illnesses!! First they need to know what it is that they want a biomarker for and then of course they would need to know what it is that needs to be fixed. And even then the chances of anything are non existant. Fact is you cannot find a cure for something that does not exist. How many more decades do people need to suffer before they will reconsider the stories they tell.

    Whitakers words in Mad in America “the day will come when people will look back at our current medicines for schizophrenia and the stories we tell to patients about their abnormal brain chemistry, and they will shake their heads in utter disbelief”.

    One could only wish that day could come sooner rather than later, as I fear it will never come in my lifetime. WHEN will these people have common sense?

  • The comments I can totally agree with. The ones saying I have a “proven” chemical imbalance in the brain!! I have a genetic problem!! Wonder what sorts of tests were done for those things. And of course they have ALL had to have medications changed – as they stopped working!! They are also happy to link them to insulin for diabetes!! insulin does not stop working for diabetes, so why do these drugs stop working for people??

    It is overall quite a good article and given what you have said about it, even more so.

    I do however disagree with the idea that CBT will solve everything. Personally I have found CBT to be so abusive as to be beyond belief, and I am not alone in this. Telling someone to simply think differently is not that simple. A person thinks what they have experienced. If you want a change a persons thoughts you have to change the experiences and they can rarely do that themselves. Those that benefit from CBT have not had any real problems as they simply needed someone to get them out of a rut and not deal with real issues. Well that is my experience anyway.

    CBT is very tightly connected with our blame the individual. Instead of faulty biology it is faulty thoghts and the person can simply fix it all.

  • Sure there are cases of schools demanding it, sure there are cases of child protection involvement, but the vast majority are not forced. The simple fact is MOST people voluntarily take these drugs, and I was one of those people. I was forced onto them by parents, who ASKED and BEGGED for them, not who were forced to give them to me. They went doctor shopping until they found doctors to drug me, not needed these days, all doctors are happy to hand them out like candy. Individual cases of force, yes, but the simple fact is the vast majority is not forced.

    The whole reason the community has no problem is because the vast majority of people agree with these drugs and have no problem with them. MOST people voluntarily see psychiatrists and take psychiatric medications. Less than 1% of people are on involuntary orders, and sure another couple of percent want take them to avoid those orders, but the simple fact is MOST people do voluntarily take those drugs, they believe in the fictional brain disese story, and the drugs that can cure the chemical imbalance.

  • I think in many cases people just don’t care. They have been led to believe that psychiatrists are able to predict dangerous and that these people have proven brain based diseases, that can be treated with medication. They believe that any “sane” person would consent to such treatment, much like one would consent to a blood transfusion, antibiotics or the like. They believe in false science, and they believe the lies. They don’t care what certain power groups say, as they believe that these people are a danger, and that all of societies ills are caused by these people.

    Having said that, I also do not believe that getting rid of forced treatment would do much to change the lives of the vast majority of people. One in 5 children is now medicated, all very very voluntarily by parents. Parents go and search out this stuff, long before teachers ask for it. People believe that these pills can cure everything and they are fully functional when they begin to take them. Are there people who take them to appear to be complaint to not have the worst of involuntary care shoved on to them, absolutely, but I think you underestimate just what percentage of psychiatric patients would continue with the status quo even if forced treatment was removed.

    You also have to understand what the lies psychiatry have told have done to those who have been at the hands of them. They become like you and me and really angry about them, or they go the opposite and honeslty do believe that everything that was done for their own good, and say thankyou for forced treatment and stand up and defend it at every opportunity. It is very easy for those promoting forced treatment to have these people stand up, say that we were never mentally ill to begin with and were wrongly diagnosed, etc, etc.

    It is very easy to change the diagnoses too. A very well known and outspoken person for benefits of forced treatment, claims that Joanna Greenberg (author of i never promised you a rose garden) who made a full recovery from schizophrenia, claims that she was never mentally ill, never had schizophrenia and so the idea that she recovered without medication is of no relevance, as she was never ill to begin with. Such a thing would apparently not happen today, as we have better diagnosistic systems today!!!!! From my reading and watching documentaries from her, etc, she was very psychotic.

  • They are highjacking what recovery is. They say you can recover, like a person with diabetes, you must be on medications for life, and you can only live a sheltered life surrounded by mental health professionals, with jobs chosen by us, etc, etc. That is not true recovery.

    The survivor movement came up with recovery, they have highjacked it to ensure that they can pretend to be listening to us and doing what we want.

    They do the same thing with supposed peer support. They choose the people who will tell you that you have a life long brain disease like them and can have some semblance of a life and they call them peers. Get the right people in those positions and you can give us what we demand and yet nothing of any real substance occurs.

  • Once again a brilliant piece that has me thinking more about what was inflicted on me and how glad I am to also be free. Also about how to challenge society to question what is being said to them as some gosbel thruth, without the slightest bit of science behind it.

  • As someone from Australia it is amazing to watch what we want to happen here, being debated overseas. The problem here is that we are not allowed to know what drug companies spend money on and the maximum they can be fined is a mere $50,000 per drug. Our $ values are about equal with the US $!! Just trying to allow the community to even have the right to know how drug companies pay doctors and community organisations would be a start for us, but I wonder, when we will still have off label prescribing.

    Like many countries we have a public health system and so all of our medications are subsidised by the government. Technically we are supposed to have two levels of checks for medications. In order for them to be allowed into Australia, they must first be approved by the Theraputic Goods Administration – our FDA. They approve them for age groups and conditions. Then if they reach a higher level of approval and there is proof the medication will be of benefit to the community they can be approved for use on the PBS (Pharmacueitcal Benefits Scheme). This is usually a really good thing and for most conditions it works great. You can usually take medications involved in medical trials, but you must be part of that trial or you must pay the full cost of the medication, and paying the full cost, means you know they are not approved for use. Except we have a loophole. ANY psychotropic medications are available under the PBS for anyone at all. We have infants under 12 months taking antidepressents and thousands of toddlers on antipsychotics. Almost every coroner in the country has demanded that nursing homes not be allowed to prescribe antipsychotics to those with dementia. The government has defended the right of these drugs to be used off label in that way and are denying families the right to make those decisions themselves.

    While I want and we need for truth of what drug companies are doing here, and we need bigger fines I can also see from this that that alone will not be enough. We must stop the off labeling prescribing that is happening through the public health system and at taxpayer expenses. Although I do at times wonder how much it would change. The amount of people now taking and paying millions of dollars for off label prescriptions if huge, and private health insurance is now footing the bill for it, so most people assume if they are willing to pay it must be OK.

    The fact remains though that throughout the world psychiatry is working hand in hand with drug companies and fines, even big ones make no difference at all to what they are doing. While it is questionable as to what most of these drugs do for conditions that are on label, to pay for someone to take them off label is even more pathetic.

    I do however wonder if psychiatry will simply solve the problem of no government funding of off label prescribing by simply changing the diagnoses they give people, since they manage to give them out at the whim of a hat anyway. I and many others in Australia have already had that happen. I for over 10 years had a psychiatrist ring up and tell the authorities that I had schizophrenia, she said it was necessary as while the research proved that these drugs worked for PTSD they did not understand the research and would not fund them. It is so so so common here, and I can imagine the same would happen in the US. It is not as though they have any proof that we do or do not have said condition. When they fail to be allowed to prescribe it off label, simply change the diagnosis, it works wonders for drug companies and psychiatrists, just not for the individuals concerned.

  • I love what you have just written here Steve. We do need to create alternatives, as above all else in order to get rid of what currently exists, we have to have something else to put in its place, and we have to prove that it works, and the fact is, it does. The evidence shows that basic humane care is thousands of times better than what they do. Heck doing nothing is a billion times better than what they do.

    But this post is also really true. We need to ensure that what we are asking for is not taken over by the system. We talked about recovery, so they took that word and turned it into “you can live in the community IF you take these drugs for life!”. We talked about peer support, so they hand pick the who they approve to supply such support and it ends up being an extension of what they do. We have to stop them hyjacking what we know works, and not allow it to be watered down.

  • That I can agree with totally. The hardest thing I have had to do is to try to explain to people on forced treatment orders that the only way they will get off is by being complaint, thanking them for what they are doing, etc, etc, as they consider that having insight and being complaint and once you have those things the forced order can go and then you can choose what you want to do. Unfortunately getting off the orders, the only thing to do is to appear to be complaint. As someone has very wisely stated, one has to be non complaint in thought, long before they can be non complaint in actions.

  • You can’t design a drug to treat something if you do not know what it is that you want to treat. What is psychosis?? Is it a disease of some sort?? In order to develop antibiotics, one first had to know what bacteria was. They had to be able to put bacteria into a test tube and then they could put in different substances until they could find something to kill it. One cannot put feeling sad, hearing voices or the like into a test tube. There are no brain scans or blood tests or anything else that can be done. The deepest of deepest brain scans and most intensive of blood analysis cannot find anything at all. Yet we are continually told that these are diseases and that we will find “better” medications to treat them. Can’t treat something that does not exist. At present ALL the medications simply numb you in different ways, all by shutting down half the body organs. Numbing a person to point of them not functioning is not a form of treatment for any disease. At most it is symptomatic relief, but I personally doubt that when it comes to these drugs.

  • You must be doing something wrong to only have 13.4% of the american population as mentally ill!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    In Australia we have a minimum of 20% of the population supposedlby needing treatment at any one moment in time (or so they tell the government and anyone who will listen!) and a lifetime prevelance rate of 50% of the population. Yep, they claim that 50% of the population will experience a mental illness at some stage, mainly anxiety and depression, which must be treated very early, otherwise they can never recover!! Most mental illnesses cannot be recovered from, well not without liftime maintaince medication!! Some mild cases of depression and anxiety, if they are treated early enough, ie, before a person is depressed, then they might be able to recover!!!!

    As you have so rightly put it is all about making money and no one makes money from people getting well. And this is not just drug companies, it is anyone in the whole mental health industry, including social services, psychologists, etc, etc.

  • Jeffrey C I totally agree with you. I have read so many different things, but I have NEVER ever come across anyone with the depth and breadth of knowledge that Whitaker has.

    I also have a problem with how Breggin practises. He refuses to see anyone for less than $500 per hour and you either pay or go without. He will not even refer anyone to anything else. His books will tell you how bad the drugs are, they do not suggest ways of trying to get off them. I personally know of people who have died from the drugs 6 months after contacting Breggin, as he told them where to go, as they did not have the money. If he is serious about spreading his message he would be doing so in some other ways, then ones which will simply line his own pocket. He could for instance say, I will see one or two patients at a time for lower fees. He can make a living from the rest of them and still asssist some of those that need help and can’t afford it. There are many things that can be done, but he does not do them.

    I also do not see Breggin going out and trying to find out other ways of doing things. He has his one pet therapy, but is not willing to consdider what if this does not work for someone. Nothing works for everyone. The more alterantives that can be bought into place he better we are able to meet people’s needs.

  • I can guarantee you they were not representative of their country, one could say that you being there as someone from the US was not representative of mainstream US psychiatry!!! Just nice to know that at least one person from Australia is actually thinking about this stuff, and taking it seriously enough to spend the time and money listening and learning about it

  • Thanks for yet another description of this trip. It sounds like it really stretched the thinking for all involved and that is great.

    One thing I would disagree with is research. If we are going to get the biological zealouts to take this stuff seriously then unfortunately the only way I can see it being done is with randomised control trials. Pathetic in a way, as it is as though they do them in any ethical manner or have any real research to back up what they do.

    And for the record it is Tasmania, with an S not a Z. And it is a full state of Australia and I as an Australian would love for you to mention Australia. One of the best things I have read is that there was 1 person from Australia. Given the way the government is directing funding here and the amount of money and publicity being given to treating those at risk of psychosis with antipsychotics, nice to know that someone in the mental health system here is gain enough to question the status quo. We are also about to embark on compulsory mental health screening for all 3 year olds, and parents will be fined for not having the child checked. Nice to know we have a human in the field in Australia. maybe I just need to move to Tasmania now!!!

  • And even when you put this stuff right in front of their eye’s they still go on about how biased the research design for that study was and that they know for fact that second generation are a thousand times better!!

    And of course they have pin up boys as I like to refer to a former next door neighbour. He was put on haldal at the age of 19 when he suffered a psychotic break. At excessively high doses in which he was incontinent and could not walk or talk. He simply lay in bed all day every day. 4 weeks later they deemed him as cured and released him from hospital to return to a 60 hour a week job, no tapering of medications, just cold turkey withdrawl. When he could not cope and who could, they then had “proof” that he had schizophrenia and he would need to be on medication for life!! Sad part is that him and his family have believed it for 40 odd years. He was put back on the excessively high dose of haldal and released to his family. Where he layed on plastic on the couch, day in day out. They had to spoon feed him. The best they could hope for was a better treatment and Resperidone did that. He was one of the first in Australia to be prescribed it. He was put on a very low dose and magically recovered the ability to walk, talk, etc. He does now have heart disease, diabetes, and a mirade of other health problems, but he apparently would not be alive without his Resperidone!! I have handed him copies of the World Health Organisation research about Schizophrenia outcomes in third world countries to be told they are biased researchers and in it for the money. The ONLY people who can be trusted in the research of this stuff is drug companies. I asked if they are biased by money, to which he responded no. It would appear as though the drugs have caused him to become brain dead. But then again the whole family has done the same thing.

    Unfortunately some people will simply believe anything at all. They NEED to believe that these things are brain diseases is I think the only way to describe it.

  • What amazes me is that they blame everything a parent does on the child. IF the child is like this, they should be asking WHAT the parents are doing to cause this? But it is much easier to blame the child. And then they claim to be able to “treat” the child?? How do you treat the child, when the parents are the ones who need the help.

    A case that has recently been in my local paper. A child is 4 years old. The parents split two years ago, but still cannot even say hell to each other. They supposedly have shared custody. They each have her 3.5 days per week. They have both taken the other parent to court claiming the clothes they send the child to child care in are inappropriate!! They both take the child straight to the doctor to be weighted immediatley after they pick her up from child care, to ensure the other parent is feeding the child properly. Both parents have caused so many problems with staff at the child care centre, that they are now no longer allowed to pick her up from her room and are to wait in the office with the manager. They have been expelled from 3 child care centre’s already. The child has NEVER been a problem, well except that she barely talks or interacts with anyone. The parents are both blaming the other saying the child is mentally ill because of the other parent!! The court is considering terminating the parental rights of one parent, just to try and give the child a chance at life. They have no real way of assessing one parent over the other, but clearly the child cannot live with the parents doing what they are to her. Will be interesting to see what decisions the court makes. At least the judges have shown some common sense and are blaming each parent equally and keeps telling them to grow up. They have been ordered to mediation a thousand times.

    Yet in the US the parents would have no such problem and instead the child would be labelled and put into treatment. One only fears where Australia is going to head, given that we keep copying the US. But who can blame the child, when the parents act as they are. The children are showing more maturity than the parents. Mind you if the child was acting out because of what the parents were doing, they would already have been labelled and medicated. If the court does not do something soon, she will also be labelled and medicated once she gets to school.

  • I think BOTH approaches have to be done simultaniously. The simple fact is the whole reason psychiatry is a religion is because the community believes in it. Very few people actually experience forced treatment in comparison to those who voluntarily accept it. And I was one who voluntaried for many many years before it was forced onto me. And then it was brief and I agreed again. I had nothing else to believe. The few things I heard that questioned it were blamed on underlying brain diseases. You could outlaw forced psychiatry today, 99.9% of people would still be on medications and still be in hospitals and the like. It might mean that people are treated slightly more humanely, rather than force the drugs into you via an injection they would simply con you into them, but the results would be the same.

    Until people are taught to critical examine the truth about psychiatry and what we know. Until people are given real and valuable alternatives, that are standard and not rare and isolated instances, until people are given real options to address their emotional pain and suffering from a variety of different perspectives, nothing will change.

    And even getting rid of psychiatrists would do very little. We know that MOST psychotropic medications are not prescribed by psychiatrists at all, and the rest of the community and ALL other doctors are more than happy to support those people, and more than happy to keep piling on the pills.

    for some that have been on med’s on decades, the withdrawl effects, no matter how low the taper, may simply not be possible, or it may take a decade or more to taper people off. We have to acknowledge these people.

    I feel that one of the primary reasons people say they have done well with drugs is that they have never been offered anything else and that we all go through periods of being well and so it is very easy to say the drugs created that period fo wellness and will fix me again. How often do we hear the drug stopped workings, so I need to find another one!!! If they knew the reality of psychosis or anything else it is that they go in waves and ALL people experience periods of wellness and periods of unwellness. But they need to believe the drug did it and the media convinces them of that – even in countries without any direct to consumer drug company adverising.

  • Could not agree more. I was forcibly put on olazipine the next appointment was in a months time. Yep you can really monitor side effects, one month after you put a person on a medication by force. If I did not take it I faced automatic imprisonment. I was on it for PTSD, just to add to more insults!!!

    I gained 50 kg (at least 100 pounds) in that month. I had previously weighed only 65 kg!! I was now at 115kg, and had gone up 8 clothing sizes.

    When I complained about side effects, the social worker monitoring it all was with them, seeing the psychiatrist, and she had seen me every week and had known me for over 3 years in which my weight had never changed.

    The response, I can’t see any weight that you have put on and your clothes still fit you OK, so what is the problem??

    They then increased the dose, as I was clearly experiencing some paranoia and the medication could help with that.

    I have NEVER in 15 years since EVER told any doctor that I did not like a said medication or that I had any side effects. I knew full well it would only mean I would be kept on them and have the dosage increased.

    I have been free of all med’s for 9 months. And while I have lost 20 kg, I have a long long way to go. I gained a lot more after that initial jump.

    I do not know if they seriously believed what they were saying to me, but my medical notes of the time that I have recently obtained under FOI really makes me believe they seriously had not seen such a massive weight gain of almost double my weight, as they simply did not want to see it.

    If they seriously believed that telling me I had not gained any weight was going to convince me of it, it is beyond comprehension. How can anyone who doubles there weight within 2 months and go ups 10 clothes sizes, not think they have gained weight?? I would really have to be delusional not to think that.

  • I really admire you being so open to what to most in the US and in fact the whole psychiatrict establishment worldwide as a radical and dangerous alternative. Not only have you been open to it, but you have gone out of your way to try and understand it as much as possible, and spent many thousands of dollars, and much time, doing so.

    From personal experience I do not believe that people crave professional support when they can have freely given support from loved ones. It is when people do not have freely given supports or not to a level to assist them at a given moment in time that they need professional support.

    We all rely on professionals at some stage. We use teachers at schools, we use nurses and doctors in hosptials for physical diseases. We use accountants, electricians, etc, etc. No one can do everything themselves. Those with disabilities rely on at times quite high levels of professional support, as families are never able to do everything for everyone.

    When people have had loving attuned caregivers as children they often assume that everyone has what they have. They are the ones who are able to make and have a great deal of high quality friendships. And most still have close family around them. When a person does not have that, they are alone. A person cannot give love if they have never experienced it. Most people experience it as babies, but when they don’t they have lifelong problems in terms of relationships with other people. These people can be helped, but it does take time and they do need teams of professionals to step in at times to assist them to create those relationships. They need those professionals to walk beside them, to believe in them, and to give them unconditional positive regard. It is from having people believe in you that you begin to be able to believe in yourself.

    Bruce Perry, has written two amazing books very much on that sort of thing “They Boy who was raised as a dog and other stories from a child psychiatrists notebook” and “Born for love: why empathy is endagered”. I cannot recommend them highly enough. From his work what has become very obvious is it does not matter how much therapy or even if any therapy of type of therapy is given to children who have suffered profound trama. It the healing relationships with supportive and nurturning caregivers attuned to the child’s needs who are able to heal the child. The more of those relationships and the higher the quality of them, the better the outcomes will be.

    One thing I have gained from watching Mackler’s Healing homes DVD is the creating of real freely given relationships and it really does seem to be that that heals, although the families are not able to do it alone, they need support and back up. Much of the work that Bruce Perry’s team and those affilated with them now do is to work primarily with the families and staff caring for the children in supporting them, rather than with the children themselves. That is not to say that therapy has no role, but that in isolation it will do nothing. If those around the person do not know to support them and be with them, during the process it will not be of much use.

  • I disagree that people “want” to be in hospital, but one has to be honest about what supports are available in the community. IF people had supports in the community they would not want to be in hospital.

    Many people in these situations have no family and no friends. The ONLY people who treat them are mental health professionals. Suffer a nightmare at 3 am due to the profound child abuse you suffer and you are on your own. That does not occur in hospital.

    The belief that people can live totally alone and isolated is something I will never understand. I would also love for ANY mental health professional to provide some evidence saying it is healthy for anyone to never have anyone knowing if they are even alive or dead. The simple fact is MOST of these people could kill themselves at home and they would not be found until they failed to turn up for some compulsory medication assessment. And you call that high quality community based care?? These people WANT help, what they don’t want is isolation, but that is what is offered by the system?

    If these people want family, and don’t have one, how is that bad?? If you had no living being who even knew if you were alive or dead, how happy would you be?? Create supports outside of hospital and the problems will not exist.

    And no don’t tell people to just go and make friends. In order to make friends one has to have the social and emotional skills to be able to do so. It is time mental health professionals began to study the most basic things about social and emotional development. One cannot make friends if they do not have the internal resources to be part of a friendship, and/or if they do not have the social skills to learn how to do so. Most of those skills are learned as children without much thought, but if you are abused and beaten and neglected you don’t learn those skills, you don’t learn anything at all. And then when the system finally steps in and supposedly makes you safe they kick you out onto the street and tell you to fix yourself. Then the mental health system comes in and tells you the abuse had nothing to do with it, it is a a brain disease.

    In Open Diaglouge from all I have read they are more than happy to put in round the clock nurses to keep someone safe, rather than lock them in hospital. People do better in their home and we know that. Better to bring the support to them, rather than expect us to come to them. From my understanding the outpatient clinics are rarely if ever used, as they primarily meet in a person’s home. Hospital is only when people are an immenient risk to other people, well that is my understanding of it.

    We lock people up because they are not well, and of course we blame them for not being well, but the ONLY thing we offer them is medication, medication and more medication. And then when they become unwell we question why?? Yet there is NO evidence ANYWHERE in the world that these medications keep people well. It never ceases to amaze me how mental health professionals can question how people come back to hospital, when you have not offered them ANY form of therapy or treatment at all. Drugging a person out on medications that are not proven to do anything is not treatment, never has been and never will be. Start providing some REAL treatment and people WILL begin to get better. If they get better at present it is through pure luck and nothing else.

  • The anti stigma campaign INCREASED stigma, as the public has been led to believe that ALL of these problems are caused by people not being on there med’s. They blame us, as if we just took our medications, just like a diabetic takes insulin then we would have no problems. Problem is 99% of people readmitted were fully complaint at the time of admittance?? How can a person being complaint with medication relapse on drugs that cure a person??!! The fact is the stigma is created by the lies told about the drugs and nothing more. The lies allow them to blame us for not taking med’s and so there is no compassion, there can’t be, as they believe there is a cure and we just refuse to accept it.

  • The first thing one should be asking is HOW did it take them until 2012 to acknowledge such a thing. Anyone with common sense knows the truth. The fact that they can’t acknowledge it is beyond me.

    While there is no doubt a great deal of acknowledgement of trauma in many speres of society it is not that simple to get help and support for it. Most programs for victims are being taken up by mental health services and many people are forced onto medication as well.

    I suffered decades of the most horrendous abuse and was supposedly correctly labelled with PTSD, yet all I got was prescriptions for dozens of medications, extra diagnoses, and if I was supposedly lucky very strict Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which said the abuse did not matter and it was simply my thoughts that were at fault. It never seemed to occur to them that a persons thoughts are based on there experiences and in order to think differently one has to have some experiences on which to base it. If I had suffered trauma as an adult I guess I could put it into perspective. Suffer it as a child at the hands of your parents, be told by priests that saying bad things about you will send you to hell and you end up believing that you are bad and evil. What else can one believe when they have never ever for one second experienced anything else.

    The mental health system didn’t help me, but no other system or support existed. At most I could get six sessions of counselling through rape crisis centres and nothing else. Homeless services required me to be assessed by mental health professionals who conviently found something wrong with everyone they diagnosed.

    Equally though I do not believe I could have gained from therapy then or now. The fact is I am too scared to be alone with someone in a room, and I always have been. I never coped in group housing as I had a person in the room next door. My fears of people run very deep and therapy is not that simple. It assumes I am capeable of forming a relationship with someone, and for me personally at present I am not and I never have been. I was lucky enough 10 years to get the top trauma therapist in my county to agree to work with me for free. She discontinued this after 10 years as I was still not responding at all to therapy. I don’t blame her for that and I don’t put the whole blame on the mental health system for a decade of abuse before I got to see her. My trauma was deep and the fact is I still fear people. I am better, I can walk down the street now, but I am not able to be close to people. Two years ago I began having massages with a massage therapist who used to a child protection social worker. She got the trauma and still does. While it took a good 18 months I am now able to take off most of my clothes and have a full massage of most appropriate parts of the body. We are still after 2 years doing desesitistion on some parts, some parts which would noramally be massaged are still not being touched. But I have come a long way and gained more from that than anything else. It is a long slow, painful process. But there is no one therapy that can help victims of child abuse, and of course we need much much more than therapy, but we never get it.

    As for the priest, I’d want to know why he had not at least made anonymous reports to child protection. One does not have to give a name in any country in the world that I am aware of to call child protection. How many times if any did he actually call them. All well and fine for priests to say it is confidential. Doesn’t mean you can’t use your moral ethics to make an un-named phone call. Of course one has to hope that child protection will help, but from all those I know who have been in the system it was always better in recent years than the abuse they were taken from. In decades gone by when children were removed very easily for very little reason and very limited to no checks done on the carers, things were different, but today, I’m yet to know of a child wrongly removed, well that is from the children’s perspective, not the parents!!

  • Laura, thank you for having the courage to tell such a courageous story.

    Like you my life also changed when I read Anatomy of an Epidemic. I was however unable to obtain any help or support for me to wean myself of the med’s, and in fact lost all the support I had ever had. I spent a long time wondering if I had made the right decision and there are times when I still think that. I totally understand people who do not do it. In many cases I do not think it is because they do not know the truth, but rather because of what they will lose if they do. It is also incredibly hard to wean off med’s when you are on high dosages and cannot get lower dosage tablets prescribed.

    I entered the mental health system some 20 years ago, when I left the most abusive home possible. Rather than consider that my problems were due to decades of abuse, they instead labelled me with brain based diseases. I should add my main diagnosis was actually PTSD, but the treatment of choice was cocktails of medication. I was told that PTSD was caused by an underlying genetic condition, and the stress was just the icing on the cake!! But of course once you have one diagnosis, another has to come along too, and in the end I had over 20 diagnoses, and most of them ALL at the same time!!

    Any therapy I was offered was very strict Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which said I had to ignore my past and just think properly. Problem was one can only think what they have experienced, and I had nothing to think positively about. I was homeless, and the only way I had a place to even sleep was in mental health group homes.

    When I finally managed to find my own accommodation I had no one in my life. I had left my whole life, to leave the abuse and no is safe to be in contact with. My name has had to be changed. I also have a total distrust of people, due primarily to the abuse and then the subsequent systems abuse, which simply reinforced everything I had experienced as a child.

    When I raised the prospect of going off medication, in fact I raised the prospect of lowering the doses, not going off; I thought lowering was safer, I was told I would lose all support. I had workers who visited me regularly, who helped with many things. There were drop in centres I could attend, etc. I had a psychiatrist, psychologist and family doctor. The ONLY people who even knew I was alive were the professionals who treated me. And I lost them all. I tried to hide the fact that I was going off the med’s, but my physical changes, weight loss (the gain caused my Olanzapine) and my being awake, was not able to be hidden. In the end I was kicked out from all of them. Even the family doctor refused to have anything to do with me. I have been banned from every drop in centre in my state, as I could communicate with other people!!

    On the one hand I know that going off the med’s was the best thing I ever did, but equally there are times when I question it. If I had family support or even friends it would be different. If I lived in a country that had survivor groups it might be possible. I have no such thing. And of course I still have the lifetime legacy of the abuse I suffer. But now that I am alone and of course awake I am finding other things. I now have a massage every week, instead of therapy or medication!! And that has been the most healing thing I ever did. I struggled with it at first and had to push myself to go, but I now long for it, and plan my week around it. I am doing voluntary work, looking for paid work and planning on going back to school. I am even beginning to establish relationships with some people at the place I do voluntary work.

    I think on the one hand the belief that these drugs will work is huge. But there is also a large group of people who have nothing but the system and losing that is simply way too scary. I have communicated with many of them online. They know the truth, but the fear of the loss is too great. We do not develop these problems for no reason and many of us ended up in the system due to abuse. We went looking for help and only got more abuse. And then they wonder why we didn’t want to live.

    While my story is very different I relate very strongly with some things you write about. The doctors telling me I can’t do anything and to not have hopes or goals. Then telling me I was silly for wanting to die??!! Those things have never quite made sense to me. How it is they cannot comprehend that they make us want to die is beyond me. I was constantly told I had a really bad case and was many times told I was treatment resistant. Not aware of anyone who is not treatment resistant? Can’t treat something that does not exist!! Still trying to work out how a drug that supposedly stopped voices in the head (antipsychotics) can supposedly treat almost every other condition that exists!! And of course the wonderful team meetings in which a bunch of so called experts talk about me, without me, and then tell me what I need to do, to fix myself.

    Diagnosis for me is a double edge sword. I certainly do not agree with the basis of it and know full well it does not exist. Equally though I long for something to explain the pain and trauma that I have been through, although I know better than anyone that a word labelling me as defective can’t do that. In fact no word can do that. At present though I require the diagnosis in order to get government benefits and without it, I would be dead. Sad the levels a person has to go to, in order to eat.