ABOUT THIS BLOG -- I was once a writer published the old fashioned way. I am trying to relearn that skill after 15 years of silence, exploring a topic that many are scared to explore. Seeking or being involuntary placed in mental health treatment creates a stigma for the patient -- no matter how strong or trustworthy that patient was before treatment, they are somehow deemed weak and untrustworthy. In my 30 years of psychotherapy and 15 years of silence, I've observed that should something go wrong between clinician and patient, the clinician gets the benefit of the doubt. There are advocates and organizations that are supposed to counterbalance this tendency, but I feel even they are flawed. This is a blog about my journey.

Clinical apathy, plus 'A Fragile Revolution,' 'Voices of Experience,' & 'Confessions of a non-compliant patient'

"Some men you just can't reach. So you get what we had here last week, which is the way he wants it. [...] I don't like it any more than you do [...]

You can't trust freedom
When it's not in your hands [...]
Still the wars go on as the years go by
With no love of God or human rights
'Cause all these dreams are swept aside
By bloody hands of the hypnotized [...]
What's so civil 'bout war anyway?"

- "Civil War" by Guns 'n' Roses

* * *

I was writing a post for the future, and I came up with the following four paragraphs. I think they may have more practical use being mentioned earlier than later -

I talk about the fires and violence in Huhojt. Part of me wants to reveal that in less than a decade, there was a fire next door to me in Huhojt, a fire next door to my parents' previous home in Huhojt, a fire at my father's workplace outside Huhojt, my parked car was involved in a hit and run outside Huhojt so bad it was not driveable, my grandparents found a bullet hole in their rural home an hour and a half away from Huhojt and there have been 30+ deaths in the family.

I told my clinicians about all except the hit and run. I told survivor advocates all except the fire at my father's workplace and the bullet hole at my grandparents'. Their reactions were blasé or non-exist - I guess this is what they go through on a regular basis?

And if it is indeed their 'normal' -- then I think it is worth discussing that different people have different definitions of normal. Some people are accustomed to living in more urban settings, even the ghetto - the risks are outweighed by lower cost of living and easy access to public transport. I prefer to reside someplace children can safely play in the backyard and roller/inline skate or bicycle through the neighborhood. I grew up in the college, high and middle school district of town, which also shares the same neighborhood of the clinic -- not a lot of crime happened there historically. The street crimes have spread. This is not this neighborhood's normal. Nothing from 2004 onwards has been normal. I haven't recommended anyone attend this college since my early 20s despite I had family that worked there. They've passed away too.

Since these clinicians are allegedly the epitome of behavioral competency, they must have it right. I, as the patient, am at the discretion of and am a student of their system. Hm, I jot down the notes, "these are no reason to react or over-react; these are no reason for concern." I have no formal training, but I think even an amateur would feel these notes seem more like a recipe for sociopathy.

* * *

'A Fragile Revolution: Consumers and Psychiatric Survivors Confront the Power of the Mental Health System' by Barbara Everett is available to read for free, but (1) you have to sign up for the website's service with your email, and (2) you can only view, or stream, the book for an hour at a time. It appears this site functions like a library; one can 'borrow' the book for additional time if it is 'available'. I accessed the book in two one hour intervals from 4/26-27/2022. I am new to this book streaming service. I must admit I sped-read for fear I wouldn't be able to "borrow" it again for a lengthy amount of time. For those who have the ability absorb and process detail while speed reading, I am jealous of you.

The earliest parts, perhaps even the first sentence, of this book mildly deterred me, but I am glad I kept reading. It rapidly turned into my favorite book so far. I highly recommend it. I feel this one is most applicable. I think this book is relevant for anyone, who has been wronged in what is intended to be a therapeutic mental health setting.

(I went into this book with a general understanding of the concept of 'social contract', so I include its wikilink here in case anyone is interested. If you are following my blog as a whole, please also see 'social cohesion' and 'societal collapse' in the wiki's 'see also'' section.)

This book's central discussion is power, or more specifically what the writer calls, the 'power contract'. Who does and does not have power, what's expected of who in or of the contract, what is gotten from the contract, and at what levels can the contract be violated?

While I still find many of my clinicians tactics', as well as other events, inexcusable, this book put havoc into a framework of simpler multipurpose elements -- it gave things names and those names maintain their meaning beyond the scope of this blog. I feel its notable this book highlights some of the reasons one might be skeptical of both the clinician and survivor-advocate; this is the first I've found that acknowledgement.

Another Huhojt clinician that for the purpose of this blog we'll call, Porly Ejes, must have a collection of identical temporary tattoos because their tattoo, upon fair freckled skin, is known to disappear and reappear. I don't have a problem with tattoos (or freckles) unless they are lewd, gang related or remind me of my ex, and I think I may need to credit Porly with getting me housing and other necessities, but details like moving or disappearing tattoos, or perhaps even more trivial distortions, is crazy-making, gas-lighting.

Porly's business card reads, "supportative care." I can't find an English or American-English dictionary of good repute with the word, 'supportative' in it that the dictionary does not say is obsolete. I was once attractive enough to be found at the front of the line right after the designer at a benefit runway show in the Capital. Now that I have a scar on my face, I question -- is supportive and supportative the difference between scared and scarred? Porly's also known to say, "I'll meet you half way." Halfway to what?
Unfortunately, and as my previous post alludes, since the 'I' Everett speaks about has not become a 'we' or 'us' yet, I am not qualified to comment on the later chapters.

* * *

"You are losing your mind
And it makes you sick
A sickened soul
And your world is going under
Like you never existed
In this world at all"

-- "They" by Combichrist

* * *

'Voices of Experience: Narratives of Mental Health Survivors' edited by Thurstine Basset and Theo Stickley is available for free without signing up for any service. I accessed this book for free in pdf format on April 24, 2022. I suggest downloading the version of your choice and saving it to your computer; the web host only permits 5 views per day.

I got upset about midway through Peter Gilbert's 'The Bridge of Sighs and the Bridge of Love: a Personal Pilgrimage,' p95.

Immediately preceding Disuet Auda, I had a clinician that for the purpose of this blog, we'll call Aldo Ujad. I was somewhere between staying at my parents' house and living at a homeless shelter during our first appointment. I caught Aldo in a lie. I don't remember what the lie was; I was too busy trying to not look mortified at what I felt was a blatant lack of effort to build rapport. I continued going to therapy because I had already waited through a year long waiting list.

During another appointment, I learned Aldo didn't do well with either allegories, nonverbal communication or both. (I hope they never work with the deaf or stroke survivors.)  I hadn't been able to afford certain necessities, like shoes. It was noticeably evident the soles were falling of my shoes. I said, "my shoes are talking." They asked, in all seriousness, "Are your shoes really talking to you?" "Um, no," I responded looking down at my shoes. Ok, my bad. I understand it is their job to evaluate for hallucinations amongst other things; however, the probability of a potential patient making it through a yearlong waiting list when they have hallucinations that profound is unlikely. For the sake of, what I can only surmise as a sound recording device, I switched to formal and concise language. There was no point. I arrived to our next appointment equipped with, amongst other specialized jargon, the phrase "Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs," She laughed at me. Laughed.

I nodded in a agreement to most, if not all, of Premila Trivedi's 'A Recovery Approach in Mental Health Services: Transformation, Tokenism or Tyranny?' p152.

I was amused by the wording of John Stuart Clark's 'Walking with Dinosaurs' p 174; it was a nice reprieve from recollecting my sessions with Aldo Ujad. I think everyone agrees my "psychoterrorist" was Disuet Auda, which I talked about in previous posts. At some point, I may edit an old post about Disuet and borrow this word.

"When the world gives you a raw deal
Sets you off 'til you scream, "Piss off! Screw you!"
When it talks to you like you don't belong [...]
When something's in your mitochondrial
'Cause it latched on to you, like-
Knock knock, let the devil in"

.-- "Venom" by Eminem

* * *

I found myself nodding in agreement as I read, "Confessions of a non-compliant patient" an essay by Judi Chamberlin. Unfortunately, Judi, amongst many others, is no longer amongst the living. While 2009 onwards was devastating for me, and therefore a blur, I think I remember hearing about her passing on the local television news, which is impressive because I don't watch much television.