Monday, April 24, 2017

Comments by Mad Ann

Showing 1 of 1 comments.

  • Dan-

    First of all, thank you for doing this work and putting it out for everyone to learn from. I find your ideas amazing and believe they have the potential to save lives – I hope I live to see the day when this approach is the prevailing paradigm, and see the end of current ignorant and destructive practices. I’ve lost my life to being cast alone at a young age into the system – drugged, not hugged. I dream of nothing more or less when this kind of “treatment” is seen to be as just as barbaric as, or worse than, lobotomy.

    From my own experiences, which aren’t “psychosis”, but rooted just as deeply and have been equally destructive, I have found that being in relationship with peers reduces my tendency to have painful inner dialogues, which for me tend to be automatic negative thoughts and derogatory self-judgments.

    When I have worked with people who experience psychosis, I find that acknowledging the core of emotional truth within what psychiatrists call “delusions” is remarkably helpful. All of the people (labeled delusional) who I’ve been fortunate to work with – experienced a change in their belief systems in a reaction(or series of reactions) to events that were life threatening or highly sense-of-self threatening traumatic experiences, mostly the latter category.

    Being supportive and non-judmental and allowing people to explore their “different truth” – actually an emotional reality, not a literal one, based on real traumatic events and unexperienced feelings. I have learned “the hard way” that feelings must be experienced, not just analyzed, or they explode. For some of the people I with, that explosion led to a seismic change in their perception of some aspect of “self”, which psychiatry calls “delusional.”

    Exploring and allowing a person to enter a dialogue – with me, or anyone who listens carefully – about the emotional truth of the “delusion” reduced and, for most people, over time, eliminated their tendency to be overly focused on the disturbing idea – i.e. “delusion.” By allowing people to explore their feelings and experiences without ever challenging their perception of reality, even supporting them in the fact that there is a truth to what they had been told was “a symptom of psychosis” helped them escape obsessive monologue and grow in ways that amazed me and of which I felt honored to be a part, the lesser part, because the person did all the hard work, I was just there to encourage and be a witness to their truths.

    How would you propose helping people who have experienced very early trauma including trauma inflicted by the mother or a sibling (close in age) that compromises a person’s ability to develop and/or maintain “heart-to-heart connections”? It seems to me that many people with “psychosis” (even people who experience extreme states without “psychosis”) struggle terribly trying to develop authentic interpersonal connections, and then experience repeated rejection. How can these folks enter into dialogue – much less the “heart to heart connections” that create an environment for the healing potential in the transition from isolated monologue to dialogic relationship. I hope I have understood your model properly – in asking this question…

    Most of all, I hope that, as a community, and as a society we find ways to make this kind of help available to many people – someday, everyone.
    The power of people in the mental health professions continues to grow and the drug companies earn their highest profits from pushing psychotropic drugs – seemingly harmless, and extremely addictive in that experiences post-withdrawal can be worse than the states that prompted an initial prescription. I am very concerned for the generation who are currently children – and are being started on these psychoactive drugs at young ages with little to no research on their effects on brain development.
    What happens when 50% of our population has real chemical imbalances based on years of taking these drugs.

    So, I feel an urgency about forming practical plans to gain proof of evidence-base and start to implement this type of “non-treatment”, treatment. Please let me know if I may be of assistance. For now, I prefer to remain anonymous online. You have my permission and blessing to ask Bob for my registration information. Best of luck and keep it up…