Friday, March 24, 2023

Comments by hpostpsychiatry

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  • One such example is this very slick tv commercial for Zoloft strongly suggesting that depression is caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain:

    If I remember correctly, the above advertisement was shown repeatedly during serious tv shows like World News Tonight and other supposedly credible, influential broadcasts. I certainly found the ad to be highly convincing, and I believe most other people did too.

  • (Not sure exactly where to post this re: bpdtransformation, B.A. August 30, 2015 at 6:58 pm, and 10:00 pm comments.)

    Yes, throughout my boyhood, I suffered continual emotional abuse from my extremely dysfunctional, “rageaholic” father. I now realize this has caused me to suffer life-long developmental/complex-PTSD.

    I was never provided with any of the appropriate, common sense treatments you suggest, such as psychotherapy, counseling, empathy, interpersonal and relationship skills, personal and social growth, nor simply just being pointed in the right directions.

    Most regrettably, the highly-regarded, experienced psychiatrist I saw for 20 years did virtually nothing for me listed in the proceeding paragraph. Instead, he ignored all my childhood traumas, but anesthetized, numbed, and zombified me with SSRI and benzo combinations for 18 years, finally finishing me off by adding a neuroleptic (for sleep) into the mix for and additional 2 years.

    The final result of my “psychiatric treatment” has been extremely disastrous for every aspect of my life.

  • …”Transition from adolescence into adulthood is one of the most difficult things any of us ever have to do. Unfortunately, at that age, most of us were reluctant to admit that we were experiencing any difficulty, or to ask for help. The three major tasks at that period are: selecting and launching a career, partner selection, and emancipation from parents. Many people fail disastrously in one or more of these areas.”…
    …”Consider the case of a young man who experiences a series of disastrous experiences throughout late adolescence and early adulthood: acne; ridicule from peers; ethnic discrimination; social gaffes; obesity; not being “cool”; chronic embarrassment; no sexual contacts; academic inadequacies; inability to find a job on leaving school, etc…”

    Yes, I think in addition to what you further, superbly stated regarding the above, these failed tasks and experiences may well lead to an existential crisis, a “nervous breakdown,” and/or symptoms of “schizophrenia.”

  • My condolences for your tragic loss as well.

    Very long story short: About 20 years ago, when I was in my early 30s, I sought help from a psychiatrist for anxiety, insomnia, and depression, (which I now believe was really untreated PTSD due to repeated childhood emotional abuse). I regularly visited this “physician” willingly over the next two decades, as if I were “spellbound” by his drugs.

    During the above-mentioned two decades, this prolific pill-pusher constantly foisted various combinations of Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft, Klonopin, Ativan, Ambien, Seroquel, etc., on me.

    After about 18 years of having taken the above “medications”, and while currently on a Paxil & Klonopin combo, I finally realized that these chemicals were doing much more harm than good for me, so I decided to stop.

    Despite my psychiatrist by then having almost 40 years of experience in his practice which included adults, adolescents, and children, he was ignorant of cautious tapering, dangerous discontinuation/withdrawal effects, etc. Thanks to my many days of internet research, I began my taper much slower than the hasty schedule he had told me, apparently just a guess off the top of his head.

    Unfortunately, during the middle of my taper, a series of extremely stressful real-life events befell me, which were not of my own doing and were totally beyond my control. For some inexplicable reason, I accepted my psychiatrist’s prescription to begin a daily cocktail of 40 mg Prozac, plus 1 mg of Klonopin, plus 50 mg of Seroquel (for a sleep aid).

    I took the above 3-drug cocktail for nearly 2 years–and the apparently permanent consequences on my mental and physical health, my exceedingly horrendous, monumental career and life-ruining decision making, etc., have left me devastated.

    I’m sure the first 18 years of SSRI/benzo combinations left me with many cumulative, severe adverse effects. However, I feel strongest that the 2 additional years of the Prozac, Klonopin, and particularly Seroquel combo were the most destructive of all.

  • Great article you linked to about how child abuse and ACEs (adverse childhood experiences) can cause “schizophrenia.” I believe they also cause PTSD that’s similarly misdiagnosed as anxiety and depression (and then perpetually “medicated” as well).

    Furthermore, the article was first presented over 9 years ago. Crucial information like this needs to see the light of day now, not years or decades later.

  • Transgenerational trauma is trauma that is transferred from the first generation of trauma survivors to the second and further generations of offspring of the survivors via complex post-traumatic stress disorder mechanisms….”

    Perhaps much of the time when psychiatrists claim a person’s “mental illness” is clearly hereditary (i.e., passed down through DNA/genes), the “mental illness” has actually been passed down from parental PTSD due to transgenerational trauma?

    (The above would also imply that that the person’s “mental illness” is far more environmental/emotional than biological.)

  • I’m not familiar with exposure therapy, so I won’t comment on it. What I am familiar with is negligently being prescribed SSRIs and benzos for 20 years for anxiety and depression, and worse yet, for what I now believe was in fact PTSD.

    I’m not afflicted by the more typical PTSD associated by being involved in, or witnessing, a single horrific act or catastrophe. Mine is the less recognized PTSD caused by cumulative effects of years of childhood emotional abuse. (I suppose this is more akin to a shell-shocked soldier who gradually becomes a nervous wreck after repeatedly hearing explosions, and then upon returning home, feels threatened, overwhelmed, and unable to cope with everyday life.)

    Furthermore, the mental and physical consequences of 20 years on SSRIs and benzos, whether for anxiety, depression, or PTSD, or whatever, have been devastating.

  • Just a few brief comments about your other fine article regarding “Study 329” on the use of paroxetine for adolescent depression, which you linked to above.

    “Like most medication trials, the duration was limited – in this case, the treatment phase was just 8 weeks.” That’s an absurdly short amount of time to study any drug, especially one to treat an often lengthy, reoccurring, or complex problem like depression. This ridiculous time frame should have invalidated the study from the very get-go.

    Furthermore, GlaxoSmithKline stated in court, “This ‘cutting edge,’ landmark study is the first to compare efficacy of an SSRI and a TCA with placebo in the treatment of major depression in adolescents. Paxil demonstrates REMARKABLE Efficacy and Safety in the treatment of adolescent depression.”

    In my experience, Paxil “works” by making one feel indifferent, apathetic, numb, caring less about everything, disinhibited, etc. These results, along with subtle intoxicating effects of “spellbinding” Dr. Breggin writes about, may seem to be a distraction from, or an improvement of, of one’s depression, but it is hardly a long-term solution.

  • Excellent article!

    I’ll just comment on one point the author made: “And just like any form of drug use, the repeated intake of these chemicals can alter both personality and character.”

    I’m quite certain in hindsight that, among the many other adverse effects, my numerous years on SSRI & benzo combinations greatly diminished my strongly innate feelings of sympathy, empathy, humbleness, good manners, decorum, etc., and instead made me much more uncaring, sarcastic, disdainful, and even arrogant and haughty at times.

  • ….”The greatest issue that psychiatry faces today is its failure to recognize trauma and lack of healthy childhood attachment as the etiology of most psychopathologies despite the many neuroscience research advances”….”Psychiatry is so much in the Dark Ages when it comes to understanding trauma”….

    Totally agree with the above!

    Also, the huge number and great prevalence of these so-called “false memories” seems vastly overblown to me. Victims well remember exactly what happened to them. How could they not? It’s etched into their memories and continues to haunt them as PTSD, perhaps one of the very few factual syndromes listed in the DSM.

  • As numerous educators and critics have stated, our school system remains based much upon the idea of preparing or “conditioning” students for work in factories, assembly lines, corporate office cubicles, or other subservient positions in life.

    We see the foregoing in most schools where children are still forced to sit rigidly in rows looking at the backs of the heads of others, bells ring to enforce their strictly regimented schedule, they are forbidden to speak freely for very long periods of time, they must do rote memorization of uninteresting things they feel will be of no use to them in the future, they are required to do hours of often tedious homework every night, etc…

    Obviously, countless children inherently find the above conditions to be extremely oppressive or intolerable. Vast numbers of them are then labeled ADHD and put on dangerous drugs, when it is clearly our school system that has failed them!

  • As a man whose life was ruined by numerous psychiatric drugs, merely as an outpatient with anxiety (worrying about things) and depression (sadness in my life), I can’t bear to see all these teens falling into this endless “bipolar” trap.

    Based on pharmaceutical corporation propaganda and the rampant speculation of physicians, children with psychological/emotional issues are given very dangerous drugs. Then, after the results are inevitably poor, the dosages are increased, the drugs are changed, more drugs are added, etc., all via unproven guesswork. This often goes on for years. If the child doesn’t improve, he is called a “non-responder.” If the child gets worse, it is blamed on her “incurable illness.” This needs to stop now!

  • All sorts of deeply troubling emotional distress can occur in the life of a 13-year-old. Profound physical and mental changes are taking place due to puberty… Extreme pressure to achieve, conform, to be accepted by the “in” crowd, and to appear “attractive” or even “sexy”… Physical and psychological bulling of all types can occur at school, on Facebook, etc…

    Perhaps some of the above was happening, but you didn’t realize the extent or harm of it. You mentioned you were very busy with work and that your husband was only coming home on weekends (when I image he may have remained occupied preparing lesson plans and grading papers, etc.)

    I just don’t believe psychoactive drugs are a solution for any of this, especially for a child.

  • Yes, a most prudent, logical, commonsense use for a benzodiazepine would be to prescribe it short-term and sparingly to an emotionally upset person who needs sleep and rest after weeks or months of insomnia and anxiety. This will also facilitate a therapeutic process, as you further stated.

    A most dangerous use for benzodiazepines was perpetrated against me (and countless others), in that I was prescribed a daily combo of a benzo (either Ativan or Klonopin) and an SSRI (either Prozac, Zoloft, or Paxil) for 20 years by my former psychiatrist. I can attest from first-hand experience that the aftermath of being so severely overmedicated is horrendous!

  • Psychiatrists and other physicians prescribe benzodiazepines indefinitely, as if they were dispensing cups of warm milk or camomile tea.

    Many of these “professionals” also practice polypharmacy, adding SSRIs, neuroleptics, etc., to the brew. So, in addition to not knowing what harm the benzos are really doing, they don’t know what the other psychotropics are doing, nor about the adverse synergistic effects that are also likely being produced.

  • I believe the biopsychiatrists would assure us that “David” in the case study is suffering from defective genes, a chemical imbalance, and/or brain disease for which there is no precise cure. Fortunately, they would further have us believe, there are dozens of marvelous drugs, ECT, and other effective treatments that will “stabilize” this unfortunate young man. David would then be subjected to all sorts of brain-numbing chemicals and procedures for the remainder of his life.

    However, just from my readings of MIA and a psychology 101 course I took 35 years ago, I would suggest that David was in severe emotional crisis because many of his most basic needs were not being met.

    A 21-year-old young man who has no friends, no social life, no job, dropped out of school, a history of being teased, etc., would likely feel miserable, hopeless, marginalized, defeated, irate, anxious, etc. How could he live like that? What purpose would he have to even get up in the mornings?

    As David’s abysmal situation continued, he would become more and more physically, psychologically, and emotionally exhausted and ill. The delusions, hallucinations, paranoia, and other symptoms he’s manifesting are last-ditch coping mechanisms for him to try to tolerate his wretched life.

    I think for David’s mental health to improve, his present life circumstances and future prospects need much changing for the better, starting with the alternative treatments the author suggests in the article. I believe David would stay stuck where he is or decline even further if he goes down the biopsychiatric path of lifelong drugging and other toxic treatments.

  • About 25 years ago, my friend’s step-uncle was a successful emergency room physician in Boston. At about 35 years of age, this physician had some type of “nervous breakdown” that left him depressed and unable to work. He then went down the biological/drug route of treatment.

    I further recall my friend’s step-uncle began manifesting mood swings and mania for which lithium was added to his regimen. Around this time, my friend was at Thanksgiving dinner with the physician and asked him to pass the salt. My friend told me his hand was “shaking like a leaf” as he passed the salt.

    To my knowledge, the above individual never recovered or worked again, his liver was damaged by the lithium, and he remains heavily drugged to date. He lives on a disability pension from the hospital he worked for.

  • I believe the leaders of this pack are the numerous psychiatrists who run pill mills, like the one featured in this article:

    Seems far more lucrative to write prescriptions for brain-disabling drugs all day instead of actually delving into and resolving anyone’s psychological and emotional issues via psychotherapy or counseling.

  • “There can definitely be place for the short term use of psych drugs- especially benzos- in the case of strong episodes of mania/psychosis.”

    I agree with the above regarding sort term use. If only the psychiatrists and other physicians could be this prudent, and not prescribe SSRIs, benzos, neuroleptics, etc., and combinations thereof, for months, years, and decades!

  • I realize articles like “‘I Don’t Believe in God, But I Believe in Lithium’” are published to facilitate further dialog. However, as someone whose life has been ruined by biopsychiatry, I find these pieces very tough to read. I cannot wait until the day we’re able to move beyond all of this spin.

  • Yes, what happened to this girl is tragic, and there are so many more cases like hers I’m afraid. I’ve come to believe that everyone likely panicked at her hearing voices and attempting suicide. They rashly assumed she had some sort of “incurable brain disease” that required aggressive, radical, “life-saving” treatment, when just the opposite was true.

    I’ve again lost contact with the girl’s brother, but I’ll try to get the information about the Hearing Voices Network to him or his parents. It seems it would be very helpful to her and others in her situation:

    I’ve concluded that biopsychiatry destroys lives in at least two ways. A person can either be forcibly kidnapped and incarcerated in it as many inpatients are; or, as in my case, as a voluntary outpatient, it can result from having toxic SSRIs, benzos, and neuroleptics foisted on you for routine emotional issues by legions of incompetent psychiatrists.

    Thanks again for fighting the good fight for all of us.

  • I was very glad to read you wean people off quetiapine (Seroquel) who had it prescribed for sleep. However, it’s not only family doctors who prescribe this toxin for sleep.

    While I was in the process of weaning myself from 8-9 years on a noxious Paxil & Klonopin combo, a series of very stressful life events not of my own doing and totally outside of my control befell me. My psychiatrist, who has 40 years of experience in child, adolescent, and adult psychiatry, yet knows or cares nothing about withdrawal, or psychotherapy, or counseling, prescribed 40 mg Prozac, plus 1 mg Klonopin, plus 50 mg Seroquel as a sleep aid. I took this toxic concoction for almost 2 years, and it destroyed my mental and physical health, my judgement, and my life. This does not need to continue happening to others!

  • “My niece, who recently graduated medical school described what she learned in psychiatry as ‘elicit a list of symptoms, pick any diagnosis that seems to fit, and write a prescription for any SSRI.'”
    Gee, what could possibly go wrong under that haphazard methodology!? To top it off, there is no blood test, urine test, brain scan–no objective laboratory measure to confirm anything whatsoever!

  • Articles like these on MIA remind me of a girl a I knew of, a few years my junior, who apparently fell hard into the psychiatry trap some 40 years ago. This happened when she was only 13 and still in the parochial grade school I had already graduated from.

    I had never really conversed with the girl, but I was acquainted with her brother, with whom I shared some mutual friends. All I basically remember of her is that she was strikingly pretty, and that other children often gossiped that she was “weird.”

    When this girl reached 8th grade, rumors had it that she was “hearing voices” and had tried to commit suicide. She was abruptly removed from school and basically disappeared, banished into what I now know is the underworld of mental institutions.

    Some children made callous jokes about the girl, while other children and adults spoke of her in hushed tones and whispers, as if what had happened to her was deeply shameful to her and her family. Sadly, she lost touch with the outside world and was eventually forgotten by most people.

    I found her situation to be very upsetting and occasionally pondered her fate to this day. Now, from what I continue to learn about the horrors of psychiatry, I’m having the heartbreaking feeling that this girl’s life may have been ruined–all for naught! She may have merely been going through some transitory emotionally crisis!

    Additionally, about 5 years ago, I ran into the girl’s brother on several occasions. He informed me that his sister had indeed remained institutionalized all these years (today she’s about 53 years of age). He said that her institutionalized care was very underfunded, and he and his aging parents contributed much of their own money to her.

    Furthermore, it became apparent to me, and I had also heard from others, that he (her brother) had recently developed a serious problem with hard liquor. I also learned that he had suddenly developed pancreatitis. So it’s no stretch to wonder if he has now also been misdiagnosed with some “mental illness” as they are “often genetic” and been put on a neuroleptic or other drugs which are known to cause pancreatitis.

  • It’s very comforting to know there are some professionals who are compassionate and actually do care about people’s emotional suffering!

    The prevalent attitude of contempt for those in mental distress, regarding them as malingerers and ushering them out the door so that “real patients” can be tended to fits in perfectly with medical model. Those suffering are superficially and expediently given a prescription for brain-disabling drugs instead of the psychological therapy or counseling they truly need.

  • I don’t understand how virtually all psychiatrists were, and remain, “fooled” into believing that psychotropic drugs are efficacious and don’t lead to serious harm in most patients.
    Why were these physicians not highly skeptical about pharmaceutical corporations and their glib sales reps touting pills that sound much too good to be true? Corporations are notorious for lying about all sorts of things throughout history. Just look at tobacco executives boldfaced lying to Congress in 1994!
    Can’t they see that producing lethargy, apathy, abulia, brain fog, etc., is not a viable solution for psychological issues?
    Why do they persist in prescribing powerful drugs that were given merely 4-8 week trials for 5, 10, and 20 years?

  • From the article:
    “Scott and Ava asked if I thought Adderall would help Aiden. In the spirit of providing them with all the options, I told them it probably would. Stimulants like Adderall help most children calm down and become more focused. In most cases, the effects of the medication are visible from the first day a child begins taking it.”
    repeated a 2nd time,
    “When Aiden’s parents asked me if I thought Adderall would help their son, I told them it probably would.”

    I know we need to tread cautiously, but half-truths may encourage more parents and students to start taking these drugs.

  • Just to comment about the heartbreaking story of the 12-year-old girl:

    “The next months were a cycle of psychiatric medications and diagnoses ranging from depressive disorder, mood disorder, and psychosis. Her medications included Haldol, Geodon, Abilify, Cogentin, Depakote and Risperdal.”

    I believe “Anatomy of an Epidemic” referred to this type of torture as: going for a ride on the medication-merry-go-round, or something similar. Seems it’s standard practice by psychiatrists that typically ends in disaster. Glad this girl survived.

  • There is just so much information, misinformation, disinformation, etc., out there, everywhere, that it often becomes overwhelming when trying to evaluate it all when seeking a course of action after years on toxic psych drugs.

    It does seem this micronutrient hype has certain things in common with the vitamin and supplement panaceas of our time.

    Similarly, I’m now reading all types of credible-sounding websites and articles, all reporting with great certainty that supplements and vitamins are (1) Amazingly beneficial and absolutely essential for good health (2) Of little use, basically a waste of money (3) Totally useless and often harmful. Which is it???

  • Neuroleptics and other psych drugs can interfere with one’s ability to do arithmetic, let alone the complex mathematics accomplished by John Nash. I have firsthand experience in this from having been prescribed Seroquel as a sleep aid.

  • The movie, seen and adored by countless people, along with infinite other media portrayals reinforcing and glorifying the safety and efficacy of toxic psychiatric drugs, present nearly insurmountable obstacles to overcome in spreading the truth!

  • Thanks for the link! I experienced almost exactly the same bizarre reactions to Paxil as were stated in the article, including the more subtle ones. This excellent, tabloid-style story, was first written in 2001. Yet in 2015, I see basically no research, warnings, or further revelations regarding these disturbing and apparently very common effects of the SSRI.

  • I had the urge to drink much more while taking SSRIs. When I was absurdly prescribed a cocktail of an SSRI, a neuroleptic, and a benzo, I had intense cravings for alcohol.

    On and elsewhere, there are stories about people taking psychotropics and drinking far more, sometimes to the point of incurring severe consequences.

  • Your brief comment accurately depicts the insidious, life-destroying effects and consequences that taking these toxins has resulted in for countless, anonymous victims, including myself! It’s my understanding that things usually get better, but it takes time. I’ll try to post much more on this when I’m up to it, and I hope others will please do the same.

  • On another note, I don’t understand why so many people, including the author of the article, an accomplished neurologist, state totally unproven hypothesis as fact. In this case: “Spalding had had occasional depressions, he said, for more than twenty years, and some of his physicians thought that he had a bipolar disorder. But these depressions, though severe, had yielded to talk therapy, or, sometimes, to treatment with lithium.”

    There is no proof whatsoever that these severe depressions yielded to talk therapy, or to lithium, or to anything else for that matter! So why continue to perpetuate the highly controversial lithium myth as fact?

  • There are 2 brief questions I’d like to pose regarding “The Catastrophe,” the complex and fascinating New Yorker article linked above:

    “Soon after this, Spalding was admitted to the Payne Whitney Psychiatric Clinic, on the Upper East Side. He spent four months there, and was given more than twenty shock treatments and drugs of all kinds. He responded to none of them, and, indeed, seemed to be getting worse by the day. When he emerged from Payne Whitney, his friends felt that something terrible and perhaps irreversible had happened. Kathie thought that he was ‘a broken man.'”

    How often does giving someone “shock treatments and drugs of all kinds” actually make the person better? It just seems to me that such treatments are based upon rampant guesswork and wild speculation, without any solid evidence as to their effectiveness. Furthermore, it’s been my general experience throughout life that drastic courses of action based upon such guesswork or speculation rarely, if ever, result in the desired outcomes.

    Also, the article states that general anesthesia due to surgery, of all things, seems to have had a very positive, although temporary, effect on Spalding Gray’s depression (via an interaction with his frontal lobes). Hopefully, much more research is being done on this?

  • Stories like these make it crystal clear that our “correctional” facilities are totally dysfunctional and in need of a complete overhaul. (To top it off, we see they even foist dangerous psychiatric drugs on these voiceless, vulnerable people.)

    As I stated before, nothing good will result from our punitive, vindictive (in)justice system and or abusive, dehumanizing prisons. We need to look to Norway and other countries who are much further advanced in these matters than we are.

  • So many great points in this article.

    I’d just like to add how our punitive, vindictive model of imprisoning people and torturing them with solitary confinement and other vicious abuse, serves no useful purpose whatsoever and only causes much more harm! It must be changed.

  • I’m one of the countless people whose life has been ruined by merely being a long-term psychiatric outpatient. I can’t even begin to fathom the horror and devastation suffered by those who are committed, forcibly drugged, electrocuted with ECT, and violated in so many other barbaric ways!

    Best wished to you and all the other survivors. I will try to do the little bit I’m able to help.

  • I’m currently reading, “Psyched Out: How Psychiatry Sells Mental Illness and Pushes Pills That Kill” by Kelly Patricia O’meara ($3.99 Kindle edition via Amazon). In her chapter on “Kiddie Cocaine” she refers to “Wiggling” as one of the many dubious symptoms of so-called ADHD.

  • I beg to differ because pharmaceutical corporations did heavily advertise these toxins as sharpening the mind, focus, and thinking. So naturally some people will assume they will give them a mental “boost” or “advantage.”

    You also seem to have implied that these drugs actually can give people an advantage or help them to cope. I don’t find that to be credible either, especially regarding long-term usage.

    Furthermore, “spellbinding” as explained by Dr. Peter Breggin, may keep many people taking these drugs. The users think they’re performing at an enhanced, higher level, but they’re merely “spellbound” when believing this.

  • Great article with wonderful imagery!

    “The unique and distinguishing feature of our biological adaptation is the human theater of consciousness. Our entire consciousness evolved to serve the functioning of the organism. Human consciousness is our medium through which we engage and live the human life…”

    Yes, so it’s way beyond ironic how psychiatric “medications” and ECT “work” by diminishing and destroying consciousness, the most vital aspect to our being human!

  • “A number of studies suggest that it may improve learning, vigilance, intelligence, and working memory, as well as relieve chronic pain and the symptoms of depression, fibromyalgia, Parkinson’s, and schizophrenia.”

    Sure it will.

    They just can’t resist perpetuating the pseudoscience of electrocuting people’s brains!

  • Being held accountable for one’s harmful acts is an enormous deterrent against wrongdoing. However, there are virtually no consequences for “physicians” who foist toxic, brain-damaging chemicals and ECT on vulnerable people and defenseless children! This must change!
    In 2015, with overwhelming evidence everywhere in the public domain, there is absolutely no excuse to still be prescribing Ritalin, Prozac, Risperdal, Klonopin, etc., to 8-year-olds who don’t sit still in school! If doctors faced consequences for continuing these atrocities, it would end overnight!

  • “In his model, he writes, depression is not a discrete, underlying disease that causes a wide variety of symptoms; rather, it is a “network of symptoms that have direct causal influence on each other: insomnia can cause fatigue which then triggers concentration and psychomotor problems.”

    Yes, chain-reactions of negative consequences (including emotional ones) accumulate and further harm the sufferer.