Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Tuesday, December 2, 2014
I wanted to open with a racial slur. You see, I wanted to shock you into listening. The thing is, I don't use those words. I found it repugnant to consider having them, in black and white, associated with my name forever and ever. They are words you won't hear on primetime, as the punchline on your favorite tv show, or on the evening news.
Logically, words are only signifiers. They should hold no more power than a person allows them to. But we know that isn't true. Words can define us. They can be used to restrict us, and they can shape the way we see others. Their power is long lasting and long reaching.
How often have you heard someone describe their ex as bipolar, psycho, schizo, or just crazy? Because these terms are considered socially acceptable, most people don't even notice. They news media, tv shows, movies, casual quips, political exchanges... It wasn't very long ago that racial remarks were also considered socially acceptable. I'm fact, they are the same thing... Generalizations based on misinformation that create stigma. Stigma ruins lives. It changes the way we see others, and more importantly, it changes the way we see ourselves. It creates hostility and fear and an unwillingness to seek legitimate, and the answer is so much simpler than gun control or expensive mental health bills. All you have to do is choose a different word.
Thursday, November 27, 2014
Someone asked me a little while ago why I named this blog, A High, Lonely Place. You see, very early on, psychiatrist tried to teach me that my mind was broken, that it was my enemy... but my mind has never been my enemy. In my mind, I have been to Hogwarts, down the rabbit hole to tea with the mad hatter and the March hare, solved cases with Sherlock, heard the call of the Tardis in the darkness, and alternated between saving the world and needing to be saved from it. You see, that's what it's really all about. It's what it has always been about... saving myself.
I never built hedges against the night... my mind built those for me. It created this high, lonely place, where I could see for miles, both ahead and behind me. Unlike many people who have been classified as mentally ill, I have never been afraid of being alone. I am not terrified of the sound of the voice in my head or the reflection of my life in my mind's eye. I'm safe there. I've always been safe there. It's out there with the rest of you that I falter, and that's not controlling behavior or agoraphobia, that's life experience.
Friday, November 14, 2014
- they give little thought or concern to inevitable capture or death
- they commit crime in public places
- their motive is retaliatory; based in rejection, failure, and loss of autonomy
- the offense is an effort to regain a degree of control over their lives Hickey(2009)
- 17 years old
- described as "loners" by others
- abused alcohol or drugs
- had been bullied by others in the past
- gave depressive symptoms and historical antisocial behaviors
- recently suffered a perceived failure in love or school (Turvey 2008)
1. If there is an escape path, attempt to evacuate
2. Evacuate whether others agree to or not
3. Leave your belongings behind
4. Help others escape if possible
5. Prevent others from entering the area
6. Call 911 when you are safe
1. Lock or blockade the door
2. Turn off lights and silence your cell phone
3. Try to hide behind large objects
4. Do not trap yourself or restrict your options for movement
5. Remain very quiet
FIGHT (as a last resort)
1. Improvise weapons
2. Commit to taking the shooter down, no matter what
3. Act with physical aggression
4. Attempt to incapacitate the shooter
Saturday, November 8, 2014
Monday, November 3, 2014
A behavioral or psychological syndrome or pattern that occurs in an individual
That reflects an underlying psychobiological dysfunction
The consequences of which are clinically significant distress (e.g., a painful symptom) or disability (i.e., impairment in one or more important areas of functioning)
Must not be merely an expectable response to common stressors and losses (for example, the loss of a loved one) or a culturally sanctioned response to a particular event (for example, trance states in religious rituals)
That is not primarily a result of social deviance or conflicts with society
I have some problems with this definition from the start. You see, we all have behaviors, syndromes, and patterns that occur in our psychology regardless of our mental state, but that's just so you ignore how sneaky point 2. is. There are many schools of psychology, but in American and especially with the APA, only the medical model matters because it is profitable, and the DSM is attempting to make it science. The sneaky part is in the wording:
A behavioral or psychological syndrome or pattern that occurs in an individual.
This syndrome is inside you and caused by a biological irregularity. That's what the DSM is trying to clarify. The problem is that there is no evidence to support such a claim. There are no biological tests or makers or x-rays, and your psychiatrist will continue to diagnose patients using behavioral criteria alone. They will continue to use drugs to treat these disorders, even though they aren't sure how the drug treats the disorder because they don't know what causes it anyway. What they are sure of is that, in a few years, the general public will believe beyond a shadow of a doubt that any and all disorders are biological and must be treated with medications.
In fact, the DSM V has done more advertising than it has actual defining, and what I take away from this new definition is that a mental illness is defined by the total possible profit the APA and the Pharmaceutical companies see to be made in the diagnosis.