John Oliver on Pharmaceuticals and Doctors (funny AND damning)

This is supposed to be satire...in this instance it's pretty much straight up the truth...I actually have a hard time laughing at this stuff, but I did enjoy it. He's darn witty even if it didn't make me laugh. Too close to home is all. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

Mystical principles of healing

"The unresolved traumas in individuals and in various cultures are again bursting open. Humanity is literally crying out for new developments that enable us to work through our individual and cultural traumas. If we do not succeed in this, the traumas that have not been integrated will force us to repeat the corresponding traumatic experiences again and again. This principle applies to the further development of the world as well as to the individual journey of healing." … [click on title to read the rest]

Psychiatry ignores trauma says Dr. Bessel van der Kolk (The Body Keeps the Score)

Psychiatry Must Stop Ignoring Trauma, says Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, Yes, please, and thank you for saying so! Of course psychiatry must not just stop ignoring trauma, it must stop retraumatizing the already traumatized. It's clients. The very vulnerable people who seek help and end up being harmed further. Not only are hospitals and a lot of standard treatment horribly abusive the medications have been found to be further agents of trauma. It's also true that coercion, subtle or otherwise, is the rule in psychiatric care and that the United Nations has also declared forced treatment to be a form of torture. … [click on title to read the rest]

Kelly Brogan M.D. on psychiatric drug withdrawal

Millions of patients find themselves caught in the web of psychiatric sorcery – a spell cast, hexed, potentially for life. They are told that they have chemical imbalances. They are told that the most important thing they can do for themselves is to “take their medication”, and that they will have to do so “for life”. … [click on title to read the rest]

Restoring Balance with the Plant World

Seeing our mental health as part of a more global ecological picture where how we eat and the food we grow and buy has a direct effect not only on our mental health, but on how we can heal some of the wounds we have inflicted on our relationship with the planet. The global ecological and environmental trauma that is occurring is mirrored in the trauma that we experience in our own lives- the disconnection, the isolation, the lack of the sacred. We can help to heal ourselves in part by re-envisioning how we work with the plant kingdom, feed ourselves and live with the land. … [click on title to read the rest]

What is deeply and thoroughly understood will not repeat itself

Ibookn self-awareness there is no need for confession, for self-awareness creates the mirror in which all things are reflected without distortion. Every thought-feeling is thrown, as it were, on the screen of awareness to be observed, studied and understood; but this flow of understanding is blocked when there is condemnation or acceptance, judgment or identification. … [click on title to read the rest]

A crafty recovery: knitting as therapeutic and meditative vehicle

It's already known and accepted within the medical profession that occupied people feel less pain and depression, so that's a good start. However, the large amount of anecdotal evidence suggests that knitting has much more to offer. It isn't simply about keeping people occupied with an activity they enjoy. It's not just 'old fashioned' occupational therapy either. There's a lot more to knitting than initially meets the eye! … [click on title to read the rest]

Peace in the chaos

The peace that we’re looking for is not peace that crumbles as soon as there is difficulty or chaos. Whether we’re seeking inner peace or global peace or a combination of the two, the way to experience it is to build on the foundation of unconditional openness to all that arises. Peace isn’t an experience free of challenges, free of rough and smooth, it’s an experience that’s expansive enough to include all that arises without feeling threatened. … [click on title to read the rest]

To be hopeful in bad times…

To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

What you need to know before starting a drug for a mental health problem

Joanna Moncrieff MD outlines several questions that one might want to ask when considering whether taking a psychiatric drug makes sense or not. I think it’s very significant that she repeatedly suggests people take to the internet to get the answers. This, in my opinion, is because she knows doctors don’t generally have the answers. Well, in fact, no one has all the answers. There is far too much we simply don’t know about these drugs which is why it behooves us to know as much as possible. Beyond Meds came to be as a result of my having been gravely harmed by these medications. And I, in fact, asked these questions but was told, unequivocally, at the time, that the drugs were safe. Let’s not let that happen anymore. People are free to choose these drugs, but let it be as informed a choice as possible.

For information on psychiatric drugs from Beyond Meds see here: Psychiatric drug withdrawal and protracted withdrawal syndrome round-up

Below is Joanna Moncrieff’s outline of questions to ask.

Joanna Moncrieff

In a belated new-year blog, I thought it would be useful to set out what I think someone needs to think about if they are considering taking a drug for a mental health problem, especially if they think they might end up taking the drug for a long time. These are the questions you might want to ask your doctor if you take a ‘drug-centred’ approach to the use of drugs in mental health (http://joannamoncrieff.com/2013/11/21/models-of-drug-action/).

1. What immediate effects will the drug have?

We need to know how taking a drug for a short time is likely to affect our feelings, thoughts and behaviour. Data from animal studies and ‘human volunteer’ studies can establish how a particular drug changes ordinary behaviour, feelings and mental capacities, but unfortunately, for many sorts of drug, this sort of research remains scanty or unpublished. However, the internet provides increasing opportunities for people…

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