Finally the tide is turning — drugs are on the way out

Congrats to all of us long, tireless advocates for a more sane approach to healing mental distress. There are those among us who have worked decades. I have worked years. It seems that the tide is turning. Perhaps it was Robert Whitaker’s seminal book, Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America, that acted as the most recent catalyst.

Today I found an assortment of stuff that continues to convince me that things are changing…sharing just a couple. The fact is that now that I don’t follow everything in the field on a day-to-day basis, it’s a bit easier to see that stuff is being routinely reported now that simply was not when I first started this work. The process of education is not over. It has in fact just begun. But it’s nice to stand back a bit and see that our work is changing things slowly.

Let’s keep it up in whatever way we’re called to share.

Below is a big “news” story: This of course is not breaking news among those of us who’ve been doing this work:

And more recently (updated 7/2012):

it’s been covered many times on this blog and most recently with the fine and very important work of Robert Whitaker. Here are links to studies that have been showing this fact for many years.

Even Forbes is getting on board, because the “backlash” is a fact and it’s grounded in reality…the drugs “really don’t do anything valuable” and what is worse they often dangerously harm:

Investing For A Backlash Against Psychopharmacology

Meanwhile, the drug companies themselves have been dropping or reducing research into fields that once looked promising. Daniel Cressy, writing about this in Nature last month, was mournful in tone: “Many people affected by mental illness are facing a bleak future as drug companies abandon research into the area and other providers fail to take up the slack,” he says.

My own suspicion is that his tone is misdirected. For those for whom the future is bleak, it is bleak because the critics are right, and the drugs really don’t do anything valuable, which is to say the bleakness arises because the research program has continued in a misguided direction for far too long.


What a tragedy that all of psychiatry and the mental health illness industry has done nothing towards healing anyone in all these years.

And finally from CommonHealth:

Oh yeah, I think so and let it spread, spread, spread to all the drugs used in psychopharm. That too is happening. We’re seeing it..even if it’s early and even if some of it takes a long time to die.

If you’ve not signed the petition to get Robert Whitaker’s response to Peter Kramer’s article in the NYTs do so now right here.

If you’re wondering, “What can be done if we don’t use these neurotoxic drugs??” Read this brilliant piece by Daniel Mackler who spent time in a part of Finland where the psych beds are actually empty!

That is ONE way that Daniel shares…there are many many methods people use to heal the mental distress in their lives. Read the Recovery Story section here on this blog too. The fact is there are as many paths to wellness as there are human beings. 

Poisoning the body and expecting the mind to heal is the height of insanity:

“Mind and body do not act upon each other, because they are not other, they are one.” — Will Durant

Remember psychiatric drug withdrawal can be dangerous. For information on safer withdrawal see here.

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