Transformational healing in mental health. Let it be the norm.

It’s impossible to communicate hope if one is pessimistic. And this is the foundational problem with the mental health system and most mental health providers within that structure. Most do not know what is possible in terms of transformative healing and cannot help but perpetuate their pessimistic ignorance…it’s not even their fault. It simply is what is. (and I might add we are all guilty of this at one time or another because it’s part of being human…none of us know the full extent of what is possible in any given situation)

That said it lies among those of us who have experience with seeing people find profound healing to help others understand what might be possible so that chronicity among those labeled mentally ill doesn’t have to remain the norm. … [click on title to read post]

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]

Finding the Gifts Within Madness

by Ron Unger
When people are seeing the world really different than we do, it’s often reassuring to think that there must be something wrong with them – because if they are completely wrong, or ill, then we don’t have to rethink our own sense of reality, we can instead be confident about that own understandings encompass all that we need to know. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

From Self Care to Collective Caring

As a trauma survivor growing up in various adolescent mental health systems, I learned that my current coping skills (self-injury, suicidal behavior, illicit drug use) were unacceptable, but not given any ideas as to what to replace them with. No one seemed to want to know much about the early childhood traumas that were driving these behaviors. Instead, I collected an assortment of diagnoses. I was told that I would be forever dependent on mediated relationships with professionals, and an ever-changing combination of pills. The message was that my troubles were chemical in nature and largely beyond my control. Care would always be something I would have to accept from others, not to perform for myself. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

A Story of Brilliance and Madness

The Icarus Project, a community based organization focused on radical mental health support, is developing a free toolkit, Mad Maps, to help empower those currently unable to secure appropriate services in our existing mental health system. It is a resource for those wanting to create not only their own paths to well-being, but also to help chart pathways for those who seek to transform the world in which we live. … [click on title to read the rest]

We have internal guidance

When we learn to trust ourselves then we know when and if we should proceed with a helping relationship. This is what needs to be taught as soon as someone begins to seek help. Really it should be taught from the minute we’re born, but instead we generally are taught to stop listening to ourselves as our parents too were conditioned that way. …

The Mental (Illness) system and thoughts on alternatives: a collection

I can’t call the current system of care a “mental health system” when it’s so clearly one that generates, encourages and sustains mental illness. And so I’ve often referred to it as a mental illness system. Here I’m underscoring that as it’s important that we make big changes if we want to help not only the most vulnerable people in our society, but also society itself. We create one another. None of this happens in a vacuum.