Professional denial is a form of retraumatization

Anyway — any mental health professional that doesn’t recognize that the mental health system is rife with potential abuse and harm is dangerous to those who’ve already been harmed and to many who may yet be harmed. There are many folks in the system at this point that actually do understand the reality. Times are, indeed, changing. I see lots of reason to hope. I have many friends who are working in and out of the system as knowledgable and competent professionals. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

When Psychiatry Retraumatizes

by Laura K. Kerr — Before I became a psychotherapist, I often wrote, lectured, and blogged about damaging aspects of psychiatry. I am more hopeful now — not about psychiatry improving, but about truly helpful mental healthcare for people who might otherwise be labeled “chronically” mentally ill and forever take medications to tranquillize their internal demons. Since I began combining Sensorimotor Psychotherapy with CG Jung’s growth-focused theory of human nature, I have witnessed meaningful, lasting change happen without medications. I have also heard others talk about improved outcomes (both providers and clients) when trauma becomes the focus of care and joined with faith in lasting transformation.

But hope can be blinding (although it sure feels good). The following poem by Franz Wright, from his collection Wheeling Motel, reminds me the problem with psychiatry goes beyond pushing dubious drugs. … [click on title to read more]

The imaginary line between “spiritual emergence” and “psychosis”

That’s right the line between psychosis and spiritual emergence does not exist. There is no line, there is only spectrum of manifestation and none of it is better or worse. It simply is what is arising in that individual at the moment they are met and unfortunately diagnosed.  It can change any time too. These mental/spiritual states are not stagnant and often times they’re even responses to the ineptness of the so-called professional experts we find ourselves with. …

Mindfulness / Meditation and Complex Trauma: The Rewards and the Risks

What media hype and those selling mindfulness don’t tell you is that mindfulness is a process that can radically transform you, and it’s not always safe, nor is it easy or straightforward. We make it safer by being aware of the risks and learning to listen to our own bodies about when it is or isn’t okay for us. No one else actually knows.

almost a year since almost dying. what is up?

I’m approaching the one year anniversary date of the second brain injury that almost killed me. I entered the ICU on December 25th of last year. I was unconscious for several days and then when I woke up I had lost virtually all my memory. Conveniently and fortunately I remembered Paul, my partner, but so confused, I also thought he was one of the MDs in the hospital. So, yeah, it’s been a long haul to where I am now. …

The biggest issue we face: #WorldMentalHealthDay

The biggest problem in mental health treatment is the idea that anybody need be treated at all. What people really need is a safe space to be who and what they are. Once people are in a safe place they simply need to be supported in trusting their own process. …