Psychiatric Drug Facts via :

“Most psychiatric drugs can cause withdrawal reactions, sometimes including life-threatening emotional and physical withdrawal problems… Withdrawal from psychiatric drugs should be done carefully under experienced clinical supervision.” Dr. Peter Breggin

Feb 1, 2012

I am not the jerk whisperer


This started out being a response to a comment left on my blog post titled, "Advocacy "for the mentallly ill" is actually advocacy for an agenda" and wound up being too long for a comment, and so I made it a blog post, months later, I rewrote portions of it to more clearly state my views...

It is simply incredible to me that people with a psychiatric diagnosis who are victimized by violent crime are perceived to be somehow at fault for being victimized. 

DJ Jaffe interviewed Carla Jacobs in an apparent attempt to use the murder of Kelly Thomas to further his agenda for forced treatment, and Jaffe states that, "police could always use better training in how to handle dangerous mentally ill individuals, the police are not always the villains."

It is true that police are not always the villains when a person with a psychiatric diagnosis ends up dead as a result of police contact; it is also be true that police officers may need more training to effectively interact with people with psychiatric diagnoses safely.  It shows extremely poor judgement on Jaffe's part to make these statements in relationship to Kelly Thomas' brutal murder at the hands of rogue police officers in Fullerton, California.  It seems that DJ Jaffe is attempting to minimize the horrific nature of the behavior of the police officers involved in Kelly Thomas' murder. Jaffe's interviewee, Carla Jacobs, insults one's intelligence when stating, "When it comes to treating people with the most serious mental illnesses, the police will react where California's mental health system won't." Jacob's statement implies that the brutal attack on Kelly Thomas is in some way understandable; since he was not being drugged!

The murder of Kelly Thomas is neither understandable, nor justifiable.  I find these two advocates statements minimizing and excusing  felonious conduct of police officers who victimized Kelly Thomas incomprehensible.  How can  advocacy "for the seriously mentally ill" include minimizing homicide committed by men who had sworn an oath to perform a legal duty with honor and integrity, i.e. to protect and to serve Kelly Thomas?

People who claim to be advocating for those with a psychiatric diagnosis who fail to defend the mentally ill who are victimized and who exploit tragic events to further an  agenda, are not so much advocating for "the mentally ill," as they are lobbying for a special interest agenda; specifically, an agenda to expand the number of people who are forced into psychiatric treatment. The appropriate word which describes a person who advocates for a narrow agenda, including exploiting tragic events to further the agenda, is not "advocate;" the appropriate word is lobbyist.  DJ Jaffe and Carla Jacobs are Special Interest Lobbyists who promote forced psychiatric treatment as a public policy. Jaffe and Jacobs lobby for legislation to legally mandate forced treatment on people regardless of the adverse effects or actual benefit to the individual.

Most of the training provided to police in this country is developed by Treatment Advocacy Center, the 'research' arm of NAMI, and provided by NAMI affiliates.  If it is true that police need more or different training; it is likely that who is entrusted with developing and providing the training may also need to be reconsidered.  There is a definite bias in the training provided to Law Enforcement due to an inherent Conflict of Interest: the training serves to support, and market the forced treatment agenda; the biased "information" used in the training is meant to justify forced psychiatric treatment. To exploit Kelly Thomas's murder as a means of furthering a biased forced treatment agenda dishonors his memory. I wonder, do advocates like Jaffe and Jacobs have any ability to focus solely on the needs of the people they advocate for?  Where is the outrage for people who are victimized because of their psychiatric diagnosis?  Where is the advocacy for "the seriously mentally ill" when Justice is needed for those who are victimized? Where is the desire to protect and defend the mentally ill from perpetrators who victimize them?  Nowhere to be found...   

"AOT does not require anyone to take dangerous chemicals. The only required service is case management services. Others are optional and are negotiated by patient, his lawyer, and the court. Interestin­gly, consumers in AOT retroactiv­ely overwhelmi­ngly support it;" according to DJ Jaffe.

DJ Jaffe is apparently unaware of the glaring contradictions in his statement.  The fact that people in AOT who object to taking what are dangerous drugs--which may or may not "help" them--need to have a lawyer to help them 'negotiate' with the Court,--makes it obvious that this is not a "medical diagnosis" being treated so much as it is a psychiatric diagnosis being adjudicated, and a legal sentence applied.  I am sick of people like Jaffe claiming that "Anosognosi­a (not being aware you are ill) is very common."  This diagnostic label is assigned to anyone who is not "treatment compliant;" it is a label used to denigrate, malign and slander people who have had their rights diminished due to a legal determination under a guise of  "medical necessity." In this respect, a Court determines that a person is guilty of having a "mental illness," then sentences them to psychiatric treatment which may ultimately disable and kill them.  

I am not saying that people who have been labeled with a psychiatric diagnosis can't have a lack of insight. I am saying that it is simply ludicrous to imply that the only reason people don't want to take neuroleptic and other psychotropic drugs is due to a lack insight; because they "just don't know what's good for them!"  The drugs have serious negative effects, and serious risks; so pretending that people in distress don't know what an adverse effect feels like, or know what is tolerable to them; adds insult to injury. It is apparent to me that even when in distress, a person in an extreme state can discern if they are being respected or invalidated by the manner in which they are being treated. A patient being de-voiced and being deprived of choice in this way is not due to the patient's lack of insight, it is a ploy which serves to prevent patients from being believed or even heard when they refute the forced treatment lobbyists claim that forced treatement is effective and in the best interests of people adjudicated as mentally ill. Advocates and professionals who are devotees to the bio-disease paradigm justify this use of force by claiming that virtually anyone who refuses to comply with psychiatric diagnosis and treament has anosognosia. It is a specious claim to make. All things considered, it is despicable that it is acceptable to malign and slander people; to in effect, deprive them of a means to defend and advocate for themselves by ensuring others don't listen to them because "the seriously mentally ill lack insight and don't know what's good for them." 

Some just may not be amenable to being coerced and manipulated; some may be sick of being misled and outright lied to about the diagnoses they are given and the drugs forced upon them purportedly to "medically treat" psychiatric diagnoses.  As DJ Jaffe knows, the drugs are, "dangerous chemicals," and are part and parcel to AOT. Some do not want to experience the negative effects of the drugs, the drugs can be agents of trauma for a statistically significant percentage of people who take them. Some are unwilling to subject themselves to the dishonesty: i.e. the manipulative, coercive and patriarchal manner that public mental health services are provided.  I would be willing to bet that anosognosia is rarely the reason a person refuses 'treatment.' This claim is offered in an attempt to rationalize and justify what is an unethical abuse of power and authority of mental health professionals and self proclaimed "patient advocates" who lack not only insight, but ethical integrity as well.

It is likely that the fraud, i.e. misinformation used to coerce treatment compliance, and the disrespectful manner in which people with a psychiatric diagnosis are treated may have something to do with the lack of trust many have for the mental health treatment system and for the professionals who adhere to the bio-disease paradigm of mental health "treatment."  The subterfuge and the disrespectful treatment is well-known and incredibly, socially accepted--and this is one reason some people do not "seek treatment," and/or become "non-compliant." It is also why some are determined to avoid "mental health treatment" like the plague. It is not a lack of insight on a non-compliant patient's part, given the reality of the subjective nature of psychiatric diagnoses, and the disabling and fatal risks of the teratogenic drugs used to treat psychiatric diagnoses, it is despicable to state the only reason that a person would avoid taking the drugs is because they lack insight. It is mental health professionals and so-called advocates that lack insight, since they seem to have decided to be willfully blind to the well-documented risks and seem to believe it's acceptable to medically neglect their patients with iatrogenic injuries. Drugs used in "standard psychiatric treatment" can and do benefit some people; they are not "effective treatment" in a therapeutic or healing sense biologically; while they do alter biological processes, they do not correct an identified dysfunction, or cure an identified disease. Whether a person treated with the drugs experiences positive benefits which justify the serious risks is not the criteria which determines whether or not a particular drug or combination of drugs is successful. In bio-psychiatry, "successful treatment" is synonymous with "treatment compliance," so the real world outcome for the patient is and never has been a determinant of what is considered successful treatment.

The fact that "treatment compliance" is the primary goal of "successful treatment;" rather that the real world outcome for the patient, is a clear indication that this "medical treatment" is not to primarily serve a patient's "best interest;" it is primarily used to control the patient. "Psychoeducation" is used to limit a patient's autonomy and restrict their ability to advocate for themselves; in effect, people are (de)VOICED; not "allowed" to make treatment decisions for themselves. Complaints of harm are dismissed; or attributed to the proverbial "tolerable side effects." Bio-psychiatry, i.e. psychopharmacology first, foremost for life; is not an ethical standard of medical care. Ethical medical care serves the individual patient's "best interest;" not the interests of the people who seek to control a patient. In the ethical practice of medicine, the actual effects of the medical treatment on a particular patient, i.e. the real world medical condition/outcome and the patients's perspective would be used to determine whether a person is "successfully treated."

The patient's perspective is never irrelevant, and should never be minimized or dismissed. No one but the patient can ultimately determine what adverse effects are "tolerable." It is inconceivable that anyone else can determine what a patient can and cannot tolerate; the need for the patient's perspective is implicit.  It is an abuse of power and authority to minimize or dismiss the patient's perspective; a disrespect that evinces a profound lack of regard, compassion and respect for a patient. Treatment that doesn't cure shouldn't have significant risks for causing a patient harm!

photo from FB~ Troublemakers
this post was originally published October 10, 2011 and appears here with minor alterations...

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