Brushing Off Unhealthy Treatments

“Recovery begins with noncompliance.” This statement has been attributed to the Bath Mad Hatters. I bring this up because I’ve said something similar on occasion, and because I think it’s true. If your one aim in life is to be a model mental patient then you’re on the wrong life track, my friend.

Don’t take what I just said too literally. Some people are absolutely obsessed with the idea of being wrong, even when they’re right. Left handedness is much to be preferred over wrongness. Wrongness is usually only mistaken rightness anyway. The problem is when somebody says, “You’re wrong”, and you respond, “You’re right”. Such a response is indicative of a severe discrepancy in a person’s spinal column.

Don’t get me wrong. Some of my best friends have been mental patients. Some of those best friends are no longer with us. They took their doctors advice. I didn’t take my doctors advice, and I’m still around. I recognized my doctors advice for the nonsense that it was, and I said I’m not going to adhere (shrink-talk for comply) with his treatment plan (shrink-talk for drug taking regimen).

Had I done otherwise my doctor might have lead me down the primrose path that leads to an early gravestone. I’m not paranoid, no, that’s a “symptom”, and doctors are on the alert for “symptoms” at all times. I’m not paranoid, but I’m as shrewd as ever was Homer’s Ulysses because I realize that my very survival depends upon being wary. Medical doctors can be deceptive, and psychiatrists are deceptive as a rule.

Just because the doctor has a certificate hanging on his or her office wall that doesn’t mean he or she isn’t a doctor of balderdash. The theory that that sickness which exists only in the head is physical is nonsense. Doctors have not been completely successful at making the disorders that they treat a matter of the brain rather than a matter of the mind. It is in that zone of semantic, medical and philosophical failure that I move about freely and operate.

I haven’t had any major lack of self-control issues for some time. I can manage. I’m happy to turn my back on the whole mental health/illness system. I don’t want to contribute to a great and growing disastrous disability policy crisis. I would prefer to keep a crack of hope lodged in the hospital door so that maybe one or another of those people corralled into that system could make a determination that “mental illness” isn’t for them either. I’d like to see them escape back into the world of the living.

4 Responses

  1. You’re not “paranoid”. You’re simply skeptical.

    I was locked up in a state hospital one time. Upon admission I told them exactly what I thought. They said I had all kinds of pathological behaviors. I quickly learned that they simply wanted to hear lies so I was happy to oblige. I became the model mental patient. So “agreeable and cooperative” with the staff my old Axis report says. This went on for a couple of months. When they finally discovered that I was telling lies because I ran afoul of the law on my last week end pass, I told them what I had said in the beginning and they kicked me out. True story.

    • “Paranoid” is only one of the labels that’s been attached to me, and it’s probably not the worst.

      I’ve been in a state hospital, too, but I’ve never been “kicked out” of a state hospital. The only way I ever got out was, in the words of Sir Walter Raleigh, by “giving them the lie.” Had I not let them hear what they wanted to hear, I wouldn’t have gotten out of the hospital. If what you say is true, good for you. I imagine the situation differs from place to place, and perhaps things have improved a little since I was last incarcerated. I know the situation is still atrocious in some states, and I think that perhaps your chances of getting “kicked out” of the hospital in one of those states would be slim. I know another girl who says she was “kicked out” of the state hospital, too. In her case, I imagine that if the hospital had not wanted to “kick her out”, it wouldn’t have done so.

      Actually it wasn’t the only way I got out as I escaped, or attempted to escape, from the state hospital on two occasions. The first time I was on the loose for a few weeks until I was persuaded to go back in. On the second occasion, I walked into a driveway, and a barking dog drew the law, and I was right back in the hospital. Right back in the hospital, that is, doing 2 weeks on a closed ward for my escape attempt. I don’t think running is always such a bad idea, the problem is, if you want it to work for you, and you’ve been court commited, you need to make your way all the way up to Canada. I’m speaking of inpatient commitment here. If you’ve been outpatient commited, all you have to do is move to another state, no hassle. I worry that the government someday may enact some kind of federal mandate that would make Canada about the only viable option for an outpatient commitment, too. As that hasn’t happened yet, if I ever got outpatient commited, I’d be stepping over the statelines before I could breathe a sigh of relief.

      • Actually in all honesty, I gave them the finger as I walked out the door.

        There’s a specific diagnosis that if they were so stupid to not make it and to lock a person with it up under a civil commitment, it will eventually get him kicked out if he plays his cards right because he becomes a threat and a mockery to the good order to the place. Your friend could have very well had that diagnosis. I found out about mine several years later from records that I guess I wasn’t supposed to see. I make absolutely no apologies for it and am totally unashamed with my experiences involving coercive psychiatry.

        Love your blog. I wonder if Rod down under had his day in court or what exactly is going on with him.

  2. Thanks, BetaSheep.

    My friend was diagnosed with what is commonly referred to as a personality disorder. Now if your personality is the problem, hospitalization is not likely to be the solution. Hospitalization, after all, is not going supply you with an alternative or an attractive personality, a diagnosis of Disassociative Identity Disorder notwithstanding. I guess the staff at this hospital kind of figured that out. Now whether my friend has figured that out is another thing altogether. I don’t imagine you can force a person to change their personality against their wishes. Sometimes a change in clothes can help, but more often than not your wardrobe in the hospital is limited. There probably wasn’t a grab bag of personalities lying around her cubicle anywhere. I’ve heard acting school works wonders for some people though.

    I hope we will be hearing more from Rod again shortly.

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