the mental health professionals who perpetrate against us

I think a lot about why I can’t work therapeutically with people in the mental illness system. I have found that the same traumatic dynamic comes up with some frequency outside that system too with “healers” of all stripes really…alternative doctors, energy workers, therapists of various sorts,  you name it…if they are in the healing profession they’ve hurt me and people like me. Some of us are like magnets to people’s ugliness. This is a sort of karmic phenomena for some of us and to change it we must become aware of how it works under the surface because it’s not a conscious process for anyone involved. Clinicians are the worst because they’re in a position of power and they deny that this is happening. That of course adds to the injurious nature of the dynamic.

As power dynamics will have it…when those in power deny their abuses it’s straight up oppression happening and it harms. Badly.

The problematic dynamic can arise with anyone I dare to be vulnerable with. Given healing requires one allowing ourselves to get vulnerable — this is a recipe for pain and disaster. I think most of us that have been gravely harmed by psychiatry have this dynamic going on to some extent. It’s also clear that not everyone experiences the mental illness system in this way. That has often given me pause and reason to contemplate what, exactly is going on.

I have, indeed, found deeply respectful people who can see me and hold space for that which I’ve experienced, but those folks are a rarity and I have discovered I cannot find them by searching for them. They seem to, instead, reveal themselves as this journey of healing moves forward and healing comes. In my surrender process I find that good things come if I allow rather than search. It’s a nuanced thing and it’s often a source of annoyance and pain as I learn patience.

I worked in this sick system too for many years. So I’ve seen it from both sides of the proverbial couch.

These are some tweets that arose while I was musing the victim/perpetrator axis:

Victim and perpetrator are involved in a sick dance. As a victim I meditate on my half of this dance…what am I bringing to the equation?

How do I release the burden of victim once and for all so that perpetrators no longer have any hold on me?

Vulnerability that the victim displays catches and brings out shadow shit in karmically matched perpetrators. How do we recognize and let go?

This is not about letting the perpetrator off the hook, but instead it’s about ending our own victimhood…no longer allowing it to happen at all…we can’t change them…we can become aware and thus learn to not engage at all…ideally we come to do this with neither fear nor rage in our hearts because we start to understand and see the whole dance.

Those of us with psych survivor histories (complex post traumatic stress, etc) seem to bring out shadow shit in just about all so-called mental health professionals (as well as healers of all stripes)…

so, yes, we bring out the perpetrator in people who like to fancy themselves healers…and that ain’t no pretty thing…

No, it’s really a very ugly thing since those who fancy themselves helpful do not want to see how they can harm so very badly and so they deny it with force and vigor hurting us all the more.

more could be said, but this is feeling finished for now.  More on topic here:

New on topic:  Retaining agency is not resistance to treatment…it is in fact a sign of health

See also this video which also speaks to the topic of this post:

the below video discusses the surrender process I mentioned above too. Since I’ve found I cannot seek but must instead allow.

For a multitude of ideas about how to create a life filled with safe alternatives to psychiatric drugs visit the drop-down menus at the top of this page. 

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8 thoughts on “the mental health professionals who perpetrate against us

  1. I vividly remember seeing a meditation/zen guru some years back, where I reluctantly decided to go there with a former acquaintance who was very enamored with this teacher. I don’t know what his reasons and state of mind were, but clearly he was looking for his own truth. But years later, I remember how harmful those couple of seminars were to me. And it took me a while to realize what happened, and why this backfired so much. I basically went to see a teacher I didn’t connect with and went with an acquaintance I didn’t connect with, either, and the experience for me was one of distress, which took quite a while to subside. As someone who embraced spiritual practice I wondered why. And it was pretty simple. The vibe wasn’t right and I felt like I was being dragged to see this man, instead of just saying no. I succumbed to the peer pressure instead of just politely saying “No. Not interested”.


  2. Monica, you are a beacon for reminding people to feel. The healing happens when we are able to energetically tap into the difficult emotions that often rule one’s life. And as you say, “Some of us are lucky enough to find people who know how to be with us and recognize and help us.” I want to share that I found just such a healer, whose work in “emotional liberation” draws from ancient Eastern kundalini tradition. After years of combing the landscape looking for answers, I found it in this man’s book and work: Following a nine-month on-line intensive course, I have emerged navigating mostly in calm centeredness. There will always be things that come out of left field and trigger me, but I have practices to bring me back to a place of clarity. I just can’t say enough good things about this man’s cutting edge work around emotions – and if you look at the testimonials on this site it is clear that he is being “discovered”. Thank you for your commitment to healing our deeply wounded culture.


  3. Good and thought provoking article.
    I don’t agree that a white person is inherently racist.
    And those wanting a humane mental health service, what are your alternatives?


  4. Pingback: Freeing My Heart
  5. Kia ora from New Zealand

    I have wanted to say hello and thank you for the longest time

    This particular time and this special blog, (although, the many preceding have set the foundations) helped my heart to grieve the fact that I’m soo afraid to admit that I’m deeply sad and enraged and for farr too long constipated with illusions about as you put it – healers 😥

    I think my part in this equation is my displaced shame based belief that I was a major factor adding to the overwhelming poverty and trauma filled upbringing. I was regularly blamed and told there’s lots wrong with me, made to feel responsible for loved ones happiness, and I was regularly bullied, beaten and shamed into following​ orders.

    These days, I am slowly learning not to take orders about how to take care of me. I will like to continue nurturing my belief that I can trust myself enough to learn, understand and advocate for what I need.

    Your blogs help me with a vital part of this process. To be willing to acknowledge my disillusions about my many healers. Whilst also developing the belief that I’m not as flawed and incapable as I was originally taught.

    Experiencing gaslighting was a natural state of living for me. It was only this year I learnt this term. I followed a friend’s link and cried like a baby to see the secrets articulated that clearly.

    I love that you share that many in power don’t know they’re doing it and/or retraumatising us. But that we can become aware.

    I will forgive myself for suppressing, doubting or shaming myself for my many suspicions and protests, when I felt misdiagnosed and wrongly labelled or self righteously disavowed. I will be wiser and prudent when sharing my experiences and not assume others will have the answers. I want to release belief systems that taught me it is vital to be liked and shameful to argue or be a troublemaker.

    It is liberating that your many blogs release my feelings of grief in many forms. It helps validate that my continued recovery efforts are worth the long trudge. I am a recovering addict, alcoholic and codependent and forever grateful to God and the universe that you share your many authentic healing gifts. You are a beautiful writer.

    Kia kaha (stay strong) Monica.

    Aroha nui (much love)


    Dionie-Sue Iti-Toka Ferguson St Palmerston North New Zealand


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