By Patricia Lefave, Labelled Delusional Disorder (Paranoid) in 99, in 11 cost effective minutes.
This has been up for discussion lately defined as “Psycho-babble” - Psych survivours using the language of psychiatry. Some think it reinforces
I use the language of psychiatry all the time. I "invent" illnesses and use humour to do it.
I do this for a few reasons such as:
You can't even try to talk to people and be heard if you don't speak their "language." Psychiatrists are psychologically "deaf" to our reality as experienced from our point of view. Humour gets attention (and you know how “we” all like to “seek attention”) focused ON real issues often BECAUSE it is presented in a non threatening framework and that means the level of defense of the status quo is reduced some.
I also believe that taking the language AWAY from those who use it as the means to mock me, threaten me, or invalidate me, as a human being, weakens BOTH the language itself and the power to do harm or control with it. ALL humans ARE "delusional" which as we all know MEANS, fixed, false beliefs, which we ALL hold, at one time or another, for one reason or another. So I don't have a problem with the word
; I have a problem with HOW
the word is used, when, why and in relation to whom as defined by who, or what, criteria.
The effect that my own attitude is having locally, among the people who did this, know
who they are, know what
they did, and know that I know
it , is quite specific, as it is including the concrete details of my own "case"... which is something else I have pointed out; I am a PERSON, not a fascinating "case."
It has of course, been very long and slow, to get to this point. Locally, though, where I was psychiatrized, it has a teaching hospital and university and now there is a “guarded” public dialogue going about what I am saying and what I make “fun” of and among some psych students and others are remarks made like, “the way she says this really makes you think about it differently.”
The problem to me is not that “delusions” don't exist. It is more like some people place a very high value on their OWN delusions and use them to invalidate, control and overpower the lives of others, INCLUDING ”others” who are often far LESS “delusional” than those who hold all the power.
I also think we should have a stand-up comic division. Of course, that TOO may well be misinterpreted as it has been here as evidenced by the psychiatrized being told they should use comedy to make fun of....THEMSELVES!
Yet those doing the instructing don't seem to see any humour in that either....do they mean; those of you who “think” people are laughing at you, and mocking you, should laugh at yourselves for “thinking” that? Is this not just a tad self serving to the delusional beliefs of those issuing
the instructions? What's the deal with that?
We can talk forever, and we HAVE
been it seems, saying the same
things, over and over again. Yet if those who don't ever question their OWN
terms, can't HEAR
us, then we remain "talking to the walls," with a better chance that those walls will understand what we MEAN
than those who are sure they know better
and that what we say is essentially meaningless or just “word salad.” I like to find some new dressing to add a new “flavour” to that salad so it will appeal to those who are too used to the old ingredients to want to try a new version
This being how I see it, I often “speak their language” and I do it so that hopefully, words like “delusions” will start to mean something a little different
and those “saviours” of ours, those who see themselves
as knights in shining armour, will start to notice their armour is getting old and rusty, it's full of cracks, and rather than being the protection they thought it was, it is actually a very uncomfortable painful suit to have to wear, which is neither
protecting them nor “saving” us.
Words have power to change the world and to change minds,
for better or
for worse, and they also have the power to change the meaning
of the words themselves, depending upon HOW
we use them. It's about attitude and perspective.
In earlier days, it was “Drapetomania”
as a mental illness.
Now, as then, we need to talk about the ludicrous ideas BEHIND
the invention of the “illnesses”/”madness and not avoid the words themselves , while hoping that if we just don't say the words out loud, the ideas will just go away. They won't. They will just find a new WORD
to express them.
Ignoring them, or “taking an oppositional stance” in relation to those who define “oppositional stances” defined as abstractions, in absolute terms, AS mental illness, doesn't work. Intense focus and critical dissection of the IDEAS behind t words works much better.
Psychiatrists “hear” everything we say in the way they have been programmed to hear it. They are the programmed, the programmers and the one writing the programs used to “fix” us. Then they wonder why we use metaphors like ”talking to robots” to describe the experience with them. A statement like mine- “I have been harmed by others” can only be a “symptom” to them; not a fact. So I have to use the language of assessment to point out the fact that the means used to make that assessment is all too often not REALITY at all, since reality CANNOT be defined in absolute terms as an abstraction.
Decades ago, in a book I read on “mental illness” a case of a man, locked up for life was given as a case study showcasing the “illness.” he was asked to tell others, then learning how to identify this illness, how he perceived himself and his illness. He responded to the question by saying, “Oh I don't decide who I am; other people decide that FOR me.”
When I read it, I HEARD that as a form of brave resistance using sarcasm.
Those interpreting that in terms of disease process heard it like this:Did you hear that? He is saying that he needs other people to tell him who he is
(Of course that is actually NOT what he said. Of course their “interpretation of what he said was share only among themselves and was geared to “fit” what they had already been trained to believe they were hearing; pathology. Since the identified patient would not understand it anyway, there was of course, no further dialogue with the one who said it and no chance of ever understanding it in mutual terms.
This is still the case for all kinds of people everywhere today. For once you are labeled, or often even BEFORE that, as those determined to define your reality, LOOK for a label to define you, and then nothing you can say AFTER that is really HEARD in any way other than that as defined BY that label.
This is why I believe it is not so much the words used to define us as the IDEAS behind the words which are our REAL problem and which must be pointed out, in pedantic detail, as if we are talking to very small children or aliens (alienists) as if they had no life experience on this planet used as a reference for what we say.