Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Psychiatric Hell

George McGregor

It is easy getting used to being laughed at straight to your face or behind your back. To be blatantly patronised can become more annoying than stressful.

But there is a form of patronising which is a speciality of the psychiatric profession which is a result of the world that we have come to live in. They are becoming increasingly unaware of it, even ignorant that it is a possibility. R D Laing in his book "The Politics of Experience and The Bird of Paradise" did his utmost to expose it but that was in the 60's, 1967 to be exact.

This unconscious patronising combined with an ever increasing obsession with drug treatment goes way beyond causing stress, eventually into the realms of the utmost torture of mind, spirit and even soul.

Imagine faced with a person that often comes over as quiet natured, soft spoken, self assured and confident - the picture of self control. This person these days is usually genuinely caring and concerned. But when it boils down to it hasn't much of a clue about what Mental Illness is, except a conviction that it is very likely Bio-chemical and probably genetically inherited. This is your everyday State Psychiatrist.

If you are considered to be suffering mental illness you must generally have to accept that you are ill before you can hope to get better Furthermore, until it is decided by your Psychiatrist that you are well you must accept that you are ill.

People diagnosed as Schizophrenic, Psychotic and Manic Depressive are nearly all considered to be chronically ill for life and according to the psychiatric profession, will in all probability need lifelong medication.

The Psychiatric profession, this authority which 'knows" best how to help you, has an awesome range of legal power it can quite easily enforce if it is unable to induce submission by threat or coercion when their attempts to reason with someone they consider mentally ill fail.

Estranged, alienated and all alone. It is so easy for mentally ill people to become sectioned, locked-up for indefinite periods, drugged up and as inner-turmoil bites deeper - often drugged even more. There is still in this day and age very widespread use of treatment such as ECT. People who are sectioned can be forced against their will, if necessary, to receive any treatment thought required.

Increasing frustration leads to anger, resentment and even violence. These emotions and reactions combined with intensive inner confusion and turmoil leads to increasingly inappropriate behaviour. Further evidence to Psychiatrists that the person is chronically ill.

To crown all this as such people become increasingly alienated from the psychiatric profession efforts are intensified to convince them that they will not be able to function without medication. Also they must continue to have trust, faith and respect for and in those who are doing their utmost to care for them.

Psychiatry's narrow mindedness, their obsession with drug based treatment and their illusion of one day perfecting it, is in reality spiralling the suffering of the people they so desperately believe they are helping. If there isn't a radical change in their outlook their hospitals will become unimaginable torture chambers.

I doubt very much if Franz Kafka could have ever conceived of such a scenario. After all, truth is stranger than fiction.


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