Support Mental Health Recovery

I came across this article with the heading Support for Mental Illness. It was on the efforts of a branch of NAMI somewhere in Arkansas to achieve its objectives. This illustrates the difference between their point of view and that of certain others, including myself. I can’t support mental illness. I think it makes a lot more sense to support mental health. A person supports mental health by supporting mental health recovery.

As I have stated previously, I don’t advocate consuming mental health services. No. I advocate ceasing to consume mental health services. Mental patient is neither a necessary nor a good career path to pursue. When mental patient is pursued as a career path, other careers opportunities have a tendency to vanish into the thin air.

Now the mental health system in some places is hiring patients on as Peer Support Specialists. I don’t disapprove. I just think there should be other options open to people. There should be careers available to people who have had their lives disrupted by the psychiatric system besides that of worker within that same system. By way of analogy, why should the only decent employment available to an ex-con be that of ‘screw’?

The idea of chronicity is in large measure much of the problem. Chronicity, long term treatment, comes with a mental health system that is not working. Symptomatic of this dysfunctional mental health system is the fact that many people are not recovering, and the reason they are not recovering is because mental disorder is seen almost entirely in terms of disease.

You have to look at institutionalization to get a gist of why this is so. The institutions represent academies for learning helplessness, and symptomatic behaviors. Also one needs to look at the primary form of treatment, psychiatric drugs. In the short term, patients on these drugs may show some improvement; in the long term, drug treatment is always detrimental.

Spending money on maintaining people in psychiatric treatment is not the same as spending money on psychiatric treatments that actually work. When you look at those people who do recover, and you ask why they recover, you are beginning to get somewhere. The idea is to be somewhat discretionary when it comes to treatment practices because they are not all equal.

Advertisements

One Response

  1. Thanks for this insightful post. I happen to work as a peer advocate for a wellness center, and I agree that one of the biggest issues that I have seen in my life and in the lives of those I serve is that of learned helplessness. We do need the input of people who have recovered as to what has worked for them. While I am definitely a work in process, I believe that my life is proof that recovery is possible. Please feel free to visit my blog. I will be sharing resources for recovery from my own experience and the experiences of other who are in recovery.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: