The sausage-making of psychiatric care

  • Article by: CHRISTOPHER LANE
  • Updated: November 24, 2008 - 10:47 AM

The less you know about how mental health is defined, the better. Or perhaps it's the other way around.

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taffy101Nov. 24, 0810:33 AM

One can not go and see a psychiatrist and leave without a "sickness", thats how they get paid, and anybody can be stressed and anxious and apply for disability and the author is right, all citizens could be on SSI and nobody works: however parental alienation (what ever the label) is very serious, go to any family court room in the country and be informed of the parental alienation that our courts allow, parential alienation is emotional abuse on children, which is child abuse

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chemjohnsonNov. 24, 0811:27 AM

I think I have Compulsive Apple Eating Disorder or CAED. I know that it's not my fault, it may be a learned disorder, but I also think there may be a genetic predisposition. I have to eat an apple almost every day, sometimes two. Please won't someone free me from this crippling addiction!!!

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MairinNov. 24, 0812:30 PM

If one goes to see a psychiatrist, one might assume that one thinks one might have a psychiatric problem (why else would one visit a psychiatrist?); hence, it is not altogether unsurprising that one might visit a psychiatrist and leave with a diagnosis. While not all problems popularly identified as psychiatric disorders are such, the fact that our understanding of the physiological makeup of the brain, and thus of the physical and neurological bases of behavior, is constantly increasing makes it possible to identify problematic behaviors with increased accuracy. Not all such behaviors are "disorders", and not all disorders require treatment, depending on each person's circumstances; however, if one (for example) suffers from a compulsion to, say, eat apples, and if this really causes a problem in one's life, for whatever reason, and if there is in fact a biological basis for this compulsion and a treatment that works, then why should it be any sillier to seek such treatment than it is for someone with a perfectly functional nose with a bump in it to seek out a plastic surgeon? (P.S. Dear Taffy101, it's fairly obvious that you are a parent whose visitation with your children has been restricted or terminated by a family court; such limitations are not "parental alienation", and are generally undertaken to prevent child abuse, not to create it where it did not exist before.)

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ParisPeasantNov. 24, 0812:56 PM

"You are suffering from a deficiency of appropriate guilt. Forget about your mental health, forget about your own feelings, spend some time studying other people's feelings and practicing your manners in dealing with them. See if you can go a whole day talking about everything but your complicated state of mind and the manifold ways in which other people have failed to pamper you sufficiently." [Psychology Today, Dear Dr. Frank column, in answer to a woman who wants to find a "perfect relationship" with someone who "matches my level of mental health."]

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solocoNov. 24, 08 1:27 PM

Given enough time we will all have a deficiency. Currently I suffer greatly from "Deficiency of Deficit Syndrome.” Seriously, mental deficit in many cases results from the refusal to acknowledge the simplicity of God and the simplicity of his provision for us. So we search for way and means to cope with “life” in our own self-absorbed or other-absorbed ways. A definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting a different result without a real change of input. Different perversions, different drugs, different religions are not really different and are all designed to lead a person away. That is insane.

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twelveuhohonNov. 24, 08 1:34 PM

This is not a document handed down by God, nor should it ever be viewed as such. By anyone. It's a bit of professional and political consensus-building. The rules of the game, so to speak. A play book. And . . . always a work in progress. Yesterday's illness (e.g., homosexuality) is today's politcal impropriety. Today's disorder will likely be something entirely different in a subsequent revision. It's a best guess, based on data that is currently available (and soon to be obsolete) sifted through a group of different folks with personal pet theories and preferences. Far, far less perfect than any Bible!

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akmscottNov. 24, 08 2:52 PM

Ever looked at the arms of a lot of these so called mental health gurus?They look like they have been in dozens of knofe fights.Most of these people are in this profession because the were patients and believe they now understand everyone.There is no true science to it-just troubled opinions.

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usercdjNov. 24, 08 6:27 PM

People need to stop trying to find someone or something to blame their problems on. Or finding another crutch like religion (the devil made me do it, we are all sinners etc). Take some responsibility people.

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oggasoggaNov. 24, 08 8:36 PM

You keep thinking about it, it just might come true. What if I won the powerball? lol

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