|Photo by Scott Fisher|
google.com had a search query in May of 2011: "will my son's anosognosia go away" directed to my blog, my article titled, Psychiatry Has Anosognosia was listed as the #1 hit for this query.
My son has some iatrogenic damage which limits his ability to process complex information and situations unaided. I would not say anosognosia is an apt description description of how his iatrogenic injuries are manifested. The fact of the matter is, he is aware of the iatrogenic damage; and the cause of it. He tells me he is alright with it, which blows me away. He pities those who caused it, which humbles me entirely. He says he feels sorry for their morality. He remembers being more functional---he remembers things he does not want to think about. He experiences overwhelming fear and pain when he remembers...
He has a great deal of insight, and just wants to have what any adult who has never had a psychiatric diagnosis, takes for granted---He wants to be treated with respect, to make his own choices, and not be questioned as to why he should have the right to do so. He believes this is important. I want this for him too; and I know my son is right. Life has been severely complicated by the lack of honesty on the part of the professionals that we relied on to be ethical and to have integrity; professionals who betrayed our trust. My child is now a man. I believe his expectation that he deserves to be treated with respect like anyone and everyone else takes for granted, shows a great deal of insight on his part.
I find the search query, "will my son's anosognosia go away" sad on so many levels. Mostly, I think the query is symptomatic of the lack of accurate information being shared by mental health professionals with patients, family members, and the general public. This has bred skepticism and mistrust; which is not surprising. (or it shouldn't be anyway) It is a natural consequence of the failure to disclose risks about psychiatric drugs; and more it is a consequence of the harmful teratogenic drugs instead of what psychiatry claimed to be providing; e.g. effective medical treatment grounded in scientific principles known as evidence-based care.
Instead, psychiatry instituted Treatment Protocols based on flawed, biased subjective opinions; instead of deriving treatment recommendations from clinical research data. Then, psychiatry claimed to be providing Evidence-Based treatment for mental illness. This is fraud; and this fraud has been perpetrated for decades in spite of the overwhelming scientific evidence refuting treatment standards not to mention the ongoing toll of human tragedy caused by the teratogenic drugs and the inhumane social control methods used. The drugs cause a myriad of negative health effects, increasing chances for disability and early or sudden death. Given the reality of what passes for 'medicine' in bio-psychiatry, and the negative life outcomes for a significant percentage of psychiatry's patients; I am confused, and at a loss to understand why this profession still has the power, privilege and authority that it does. There are still those who are willfully blind. Thankfully, there are also those of us who not only question the bio-psychiatric paradigm; but take a stand against it.
It is my personal opinion that many people with a psychiatric diagnosis are labeled with anosognosia because they dare express an opinion which is deemed 'unacceptable' by mental health professionals; and the person is labeled, "noncompliant" or "treatment resistant" to justify the professional's abuse of authority. This is not to say that people who are experiencing extreme states or psychosis, can not temporarily lose some or all of their ability to express their understanding of what is happening to them; in terms others can readily understand. However, this loss should not be assumed to be permanent, or automatically assumed that a person lacks understanding or abilities. A person's wishes should never be effectively dismissed, because "they just don't know what's good for them" either.
Here is an excellent paper on Mentalism in the mental health treatment system: Identifying and Overcoming Metalism by Pat Risser. Thanks to Ed Knight for sharing Pat's paper with me.
Portions of this post appeared May 28., 2011 titled, "Google Search #1 will my son's anosognosia go away" this post is a slightly modified version of the original.