ADHD:  The Hoax Unravels

May 10, 2016

At the risk of stating the obvious, ADHD is not an illness.  Rather, it is an unreliable and disempowering label for a loose collection of arbitrarily chosen and vaguely defined behaviors.  ADHD has been avidly promoted as an illness by pharma-psychiatry for the purpose of selling stimulant drugs.  In which endeavor, they have been phenomenally successful, […]

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Drugging Toddlers for Inattention, Impulsivity, and Hyperactivity

May 22, 2014

On May 16, the New York Times ran an article titled Thousands of Toddlers Are Medicated for A.D.H.D., Report Finds, Raising Worries, by Alan Schwarz.  Here is the opening sentence: “More than 10,000 American toddlers 2 or 3 years old are being medicated for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder outside established pediatric guidelines, according to data presented […]

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Social Services and Psychiatry

May 9, 2014

The controversy surrounding Justina Pelletier and her family has expanded its scope in recent months, and has now become a general public scrutiny of Massachusetts’s Department of Children and Families. On April 29, State Governor Deval Patrick gave a press conference in which he announced the resignation of DCF Commissioner Olga Roche. I think there’s […]

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Justina Pelletier: The Debate Continues

April 15, 2014

On April 1, 2014, Slate published an online article titled Mitochondrial Disease or Medical Child Abuse?  The author is Brian Palmer.  Slate is a daily, general interest web magazine, founded in 1996, that provides “analysis and commentary about politics, news, business, technology and culture,” and is a subsidiary of the Washington Post.  Brian Palmer is […]

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Justina Pelletier and Boston Children’s Hospital

March 6, 2014

Justina Pelletier is the 15-year-old girl who is at the center of a dispute between her parents and the Psychiatry Department at Boston Children’s Hospital. Justina, who lived with her parents in Connecticut, had been diagnosed with mitochondrial disease, a rare and debilitating illness, and had been receiving treatment for this from Mark Korson, MD, […]

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The Problem of Blame

January 29, 2014

On January 27, I posted Maternal Attachment in Infancy and Adult Mental Health.  In this article I reviewed a longitudinal study by Fan et al.  The main finding of the study was: “Infants who experience unsupportive maternal behavior at 8 months have an increased risk for developing psychological sequelae later in life.” In my article, […]

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Maternal Attachment in Infancy and Adult Mental Health

January 27, 2014

There’s an interesting article by Angela Fan et al, in Comprehensive Psychiatry, October 28, 2013.  It’s titled Association between maternal behavior in infancy and adult mental health: A 30-year prospective study.  The data for this investigation were gathered as part of a wider longitudinal study. PROCEDURE Participants in the study were 1,752 babies born between […]

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The Living-With-Parents Blues

August 29, 2013

Despite the general rise in economic indicators over the past year or two, there are still many young adults who, for economic reasons, have had to move back in with their parents.  A proportion of these people become depressed. Depression is the normal human reaction to loss, disappointment, or a general sense of unfulfillment.  Viewed […]

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Parental Influences

August 27, 2013

If we’re happy to take some of the credit for our children’s successes, we should also accept a share of the responsibility when they don’t do so well. In the late 70’s, I met an elderly gentleman in a social context.  I’ll call him James.  He was in his early 80’s. We got to talking, […]

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More on Postpartum Depression

April 26, 2013

I recently wrote a post on postpartum depression which has generated a certain amount of negative comment.  For this reason, I thought it might be helpful to clarify some points. DEFINITION AND EXPLANATIONS The DSM makes no mention of postpartum depression as such.  The closest it comes is major depressive disorder with postpartum onset.  In […]

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Postpartum Depression Not an Illness

April 24, 2013

BACKGROUND The primary purpose of the bio-psychiatric-pharma faction is to expand turf and sell more drugs.  This is a multi-faceted endeavor, one component of which is disease mongering.  This consists of using marketing techniques to persuade large numbers of people that they have an illness which needs to be treated with drugs. With regards to […]

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Internet Addiction: A Bad Habit, Not An Illness

April 23, 2013

The DSM-5 drafting committee considered including Internet addiction in the upcoming revision, but eventually backed off, at least for now.  Apparently they decided to put it in the category “requiring further study.”  So it’ll be in DSM-6. Meanwhile, people are being given the “diagnosis” anyway – and of course, the “treatment.” AN ILLUSTRATIVE CASE I’m […]

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In DSM-5, A-D-H-D Still Spells Misbehavior

April 4, 2013

It is a central theme of this website that there are no mental illnesses/disorders, and that the psychiatric medicalization of ordinary human problems is arbitrary, spurious, and destructive. The widespread acceptance of ADHD as a mental illness/chemical imbalance has no scientific underpinning, but rather is based on marketing and promotion.  The ADHD “diagnosis” is particularly […]

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Psychiatric “Diagnoses” for Children

March 26, 2013

Today, courtesy of Monica, I came across an article by Marilyn Wedge, PhD.  It’s called Six Problems with Psychiatric Diagnosis for Children.   You can read it here. Here are some quotes: “Psychiatric diagnoses contained in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders are not classified by causes like genuine medical diseases.” “Perhaps worst of […]

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Mental Health and the Schools

March 6, 2013

When I was about eleven or twelve, I had reasonably good social skills with my peers, but I was shy and awkward with adults. Our neighbor, Mrs. F., was a very pleasant lady who loved to spend time in her front yard with her flowers.  Often, as I came up the walk to our door, […]

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Play Therapy

February 26, 2013

I came across an interesting article Psychiatric Medication or Play Therapy? by Bob Fiddaman, a New Zealand writer. The article compares the efficacy and dangers of play therapy vs. pharmaceutical products for children with various problems. Here are some quotes:  “…play therapy outcome studies support the efficacy of this intervention with children suffering from various […]

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Mandatory Mental Health Screenings for Schoolchildren

February 7, 2013

A regular commenter to this website has drawn my attention to a bill that has been proposed in the Connecticut state legislature.  The bill would require public school and homeschooled children to be assessed by mental health practitioners at grades 6, 8, 10, and 12. The bill, sponsored by Senator Toni Harp and Representative Toni […]

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Parenting and Psychiatry

April 24, 2012

About a week ago an article appeared on the ‘net concerning an attempt by parents to ban ice cream vendors from a playground in Brooklyn, New York.  The piece was reprinted in the New York Post.  Apparently some of the parents are upset because the arrival of the vendors stimulates requests for ice cream from […]

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Sexual Disorders are Not Illnesses (Part 2)

July 21, 2010

In my last post I described frotteurism, which the APA lists as one of their mental disorders/illnesses. The central theme of this blog is that there are no mental illnesses – that mental illnesses are essentially psychiatrists’ ways of conceptualizing ordinary human problems for the purposes of consolidating turf and legitimizing the use of drugs […]

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Conduct Disorder and Oppositional Defiant Disorder

April 17, 2009

CONDUCT DISORDER The essential feature of Conduct Disorder, according to the APA, is a “repetitive and persistent pattern” of rule breaking or activity which violates other people’s basic rights. The manual identifies four broad categories of behavior under this heading: aggression; destruction of property; theft or deceitfulness; and serious violation of rules. DSM goes on […]

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How Can They Just Invent Illnesses?

March 25, 2009

The notion of a professional group such as the APA sitting in their councils and committees inventing illnesses for themselves to treat seems so preposterous that a measure of disbelief on the part of the reader is understandable.  In its historical context, however, the development is not so surprising.  The original 1952 DSM was very […]

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