Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Comments by Howard31

Showing 9 of 9 comments.

  • Hi Tom,

    Sorry, can’t say that I have. I have read that if there isn’t an adequate definition of “mental health”, and in dsm I can’t remember seeing one, then it’s concepts, such as, “mental illness, “mental disorder”, “psychiatric disorder” and similar are useless terms. Makes sense to me but I think that means that dsm labels are useless too, but I’m open to hearing something different.

    Best Wishes to you, too, Tom

  • I am enjoying reading Critical Psychiatry Textbook very much, but would like to confirm how many times Peter C. Gøtzsche’s works have been cited. I have seen on Google 30,000, and here it is 150,000. However any citations there are, ideally the book would be required reading for anyone working in the so-called “mental health” (aka mental illness) field. Then perhaps we could dispense with putting people into categories manufactured by u.s. psychiatrists and adopt something more reality-based, such as, the Power Threat Meaning Framework. And perhaps further down the trail we might be able to dispense altogether with “frameworks” of any kind… https://www.bps.org.uk/member-networks/division-clinical-psychology/power-threat-meaning-framework

  • There have been postings about the attached website before, but as one step toward a new paradigm, and about 180 degrees to the current bio-medical belief system, this might be of interest: the Power, Threat, Meaning Framework, which doesn’t obsess with focusing exclusively on the myth of autonomous, individuals, in isolation from their environment, others, etc. From the website, “The main aspects of the Framework are summarised in these questions, which can apply to
    individuals, families or social groups:
    ▪ ‘What has happened to you?’ (How is Power operating in your life?)
    ▪ ‘How did it affect you?’ (What kind of Threats does this pose?)
    ▪ ‘What sense did you make of it?’ (What is the Meaning of these situations and experiences to you?)
    ▪ ‘What did you have to do to survive?’ (What kinds of Threat Response are you using?)
    In addition, the two questions below help us to think about what skills and resources people might have, and how we might pull all these ideas and responses together into a personal narrative or story:
    ▪ ‘What are your strengths?’ (What access to Power resources do you have?)
    ▪ ‘What is your story?’ (How does all this fit together?)”


  • I found the article very informative and will share to the Psychologists for Social Justice Facebook page. I would like to hear any ideas about how to apply this to the racial injustice First Nation peoples experience. As horrible as racism toward people of colour is, those groups are at least part of the social/cultural structures of the u.s., and Australia where I now live (ex-u.s). But but Frist Nations peoples certainly are not part of the “great u.s. dream” (one of many reasons I left the u.s. permanently) or that of Australia, really, unless they turn their backs completely on their cultural heritage.

  • Not sure how accurate the attached is, but maybe the “right to vote” is contingent… “Laws in 39 states and Washington, D.C., allow judges to strip voting rights from people with mental disorders ranging from schizophrenia to Down syndrome who are deemed “incapacitated” or “incompetent.” Some of those states use archaic language like “idiots” or “insane persons” in their statutes.” https://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/blogs/stateline/2018/03/21/thousands-lose-right-to-vote-under-incompetence-laws

  • Why not start with confronting the idea that dsm/icd do in fact describe medical conditions and consider the possibility that the issues clients present with have a meaning beyond a simple- minded listing of what they do and look at the meaning behind so-called “symptoms”, what people are stressed. At the moment dsm/icd amounts to, “I feel depressed” and, “I feel depressed because I have depression”, and around and round it goes for any dsm/icd category. if a person wants to look at – why – they have the feelings they do and act as they do, given the quality of their life with many psychiatrists, psychologists, clinical this or that, what they are likely to receive is a ready made, off the rack response, a dsm/icd label usually accompanied with a cocktail of dangerous drugs. And, if the person is brave enough to want to follow the why and/or to look at strategies to deal with their suffering, improve their lives without being drugged, they will probably be further labeled as “resistant”, meaning they have the temerity to question the psychiatrist/GP, psychologist, “clinical social worker’s”.. interpretation of the person’s life. This might be of interest as an alternative to trying to fix an outdated and dangerous bio-medical model (but I doubt if it will ever be put into practice – no obvious money for drug companies, psychiatrists…): https://www.bps.org.uk/power-threat-meaning-framework

  • Not sure how keeping “psychiatric research” etc., is something worth supporting. u.s. psychiatrists and what they see as research (political negotiation and worse, per Paula J. Caplan, for example, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tgilBaRbulc) gave the world dsm, a recipe book for pathologizing human suffering. If one has, for example, been raped, directly experienced war, other trauma, and one is acting abnormally per dsm, seeing a psychiatrist will almost certainly begin with being given one or usually more “diagnoses” – e.g., anxiety, clinical depression, bi-polar, personality disorder, ptsd – and very often dangerous drugs are prescribed to “fix” the person’s faulty biology which couldn’t “appropriately” deal with their traumatic experiences. Strangely, psychiatric “research” and dsm has little to say about what would be “normal behaviour” for such horrific experiences because it’s always easier for psychiatrist and their supporters to blame the victim of trauma and, often, sedate them into submission. Then the “symptoms” will reduce or go away and that will be seen as a psychiatric “cure”. Applied to actual, physical medicine, a psychiatrist seeing someone with, say, a broken arm, would prescribe major mood stabilizers and/or other drugs – symptoms would subside, until they wore off, then more more drugs would be prescribed, until the person became accustomed to the bend in their arm and another cure for “psychiatry” would be racked up. Anyone here interested in alternatives to what psychiatrists and other medically minded professionals do? Try https://www.bps.org.uk/power-threat-meaning-framework