Tuesday, May 02, 2006

There Are Rewards For Agreement:

Not So For The Dissident

by Patricia Lefave, Labelled D.D.(P)

A few years ago I read an article about a dedicated woman, a Canadian Mental Health Association Provincial Board member, who received their National Distinguished Service Award. She has also volunteered for them, and for Homewood Health Centre, and had been President of a district office of the Canadian Mental Health Association.
Like me, she wants everyone to talk about "mental illness," and she says it's the least understood "illness". I agree with her about that too. But, that's where my agreement ends.

This woman seems very nice, sincere, and passionate in her beliefs. I have no doubt that her intentions are honest and high minded. I would probably even like her personally; if only I wasn't one of the people she was determined to " help ". It is for that reason she also scares the hell out of me.

In fact, she, and many well meaning people just like her, scare me more than the overtly aggressive. Why ? Because, she is SO sincere about what she believes, that people will listen to her when she says, ( and I'm quoting here ) "Mental illness is present from birth. "

With that reinforcement of the " disease " premise, the mental health establishment will now define even more of our "reality " FOR us, from cradle to grave. Anyone who dares to reject the diagnosis of the "experts", will simply have his/her "denial" and "resistance" assessed as " symptoms." This I believe is part of Psychiatry's collective Tautological Argument Disorder. ( as I named it in my article, The Psychiatric Tautology: Our Collective Nightmare")

This is why we "nuts "are horrified when we suddenly understand the nature of the " help " we are about to receive, by the grace of many truly good, well intentioned people just like her. They are enthusiastically supporting the Psychiatric Faith, in gaining unquestioned power and control, over virtually everyone. This they do, while repeating to us, over and over, the mental illness mantra, "It's for your own good! "

No real evidence is necessary, none accepted, ( even when we can prove our own claims ) and no dissenting opinions tolerated. It can now take only ten, cost-effective minutes to label someone inherently defective. I know, because I was, for telling the truth. Once labelled, you may retain that label for life, (even if it is later removed or changed) and no one will have much interest in hearing anything you say, as " real " after that.

This honoured woman is absolutely right when she says, " We are all vulnerable." We are all vulnerable to being told we have a mental illness, bubbling up from within our defective selves. We are also all vulnerable, to having no possible way to escape the diagnosis, or the total control, over our minds and lives, that comes with it.

The total invalidation of my very real, and denied, experience is proof of that. No one has "allowed" my proof to get in the way of The Faith. Instead, it has been suppressed, and I have been invalidated by those who handed me the label. Sometimes, that is done now, by pointing out that I have a label, and therefore should not be given consideration in regard to what I say.

As much as I am certain that this woman is a fine person, with great intentions, I do not want her generous "help". You see, I know what my personal Road To Hell has been paved with. She cannot, and does not, speak for me. I do not require an "interpreter" to speak on my behalf.

Of course, I am the dissenting opinion, in the current minority, which is routinely suppressed , in order to maintain the status quo. Still, I persist in speaking for myself. That's actually healthy, not unhealthy. There is no hidden meaning in what I say. All you need to do to understand what this "nut" means, is accept it at face value. There is no "interpretation " needed. There never was.
It's really not complicated at all.


Anonymous said...

Excellent Pat! You are very insightful. Thanks for sharing, Denise

flawedplan said...

I liked that post too, I just found the blog. Scary heavy stuff, we need to get our voices out there, affirm and support one another's experience, especially when different from our own. Good work!

Anonymous said...

Pat , Homewood sounds like some kinda nightmare movie . The psych monsters will get into everything
we own , everywhere .
You have more nerve than I, for speaking loudly against the system.
Always an inspiration and a hero.
Thanks always Pat .

Patricia, L. said...

I don't consider Homewood to be any more of a nightmare than any other psychiatric hospital, in fact, it is LESS of a nightmare than many.The problem is not that it is so different but rather that it is so common. Bad behaviour of employees all too often gets covered up and the results of that are ignored by most of the people.This could happen to ANYONE. That is why I have taken this public stand.It has to stop. Pat L.