Diagnosis & Therapy

A New Curriculum for Training Psychotherapists

If and when we move away from our current model of “diagnosing and treating mental disorders” and rethink what we are really offering clients to relieve their distress, it makes sense to begin to think about what a new curriculum for future mental health providers might look like. What might a core curriculum for...
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Critiques of Diagnosis

Speaking in Code

The recent publication of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) has brought several new disorders into public consciousness while eliminating some old ones. As just two examples, Disruptive Mood Dysregulation disorder is in, but Asperger’s is out. The often-overlooked irony is that when it comes to diagnostic codes—the numeric or alphanumeric...
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Current Status of Dx

Replies, Replies, to Dr. Pies

It would be a shame if Dr. Pies stops contributing to this debate. I think we’re addressing important things here, and debate between well-meaning people with different opinions is often very illuminating. That said, we shouldn’t get into ‘tit-for-tat’. But I think we should continue to talk. I completely agree with Dr. Pies’ suggestion...
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Contrarian Concepts

Globalization, Emotions, and the Problematic DSM

Although the DSM started as a manual for practitioners, the lists of symptoms associated with its diagnoses are commonly known to the general public. Through exposure to direct-to-consumer advertising, health-focused websites, and the news, just about everyone can now diagnose themselves, their friends, and their family members — if not the coworker or ex-lover...
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Current Status of Dx

Language is Important – A Reply to Ronald Pies

Dr. Ronald Pies is, characteristically, correct in pointing out that language is important. Elegant language should be used to explain and contextualize the evidence of empirical research, not to obfuscate and not to serve as an alternative to scientific analysis. So I am sorry that Dr. Pies was confused, rather than inspired, by my essay....
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Contrarian Concepts

DSM-5’s Somatic Symptom Disorder: From Medical Enigma to Psychiatric Sphinx

From there, after six days and seven nights, you arrive at Zobeide, the white city, well exposed to the moon, with streets wound about themselves as in a skein. They tell this tale of its foundation: men of various nations had an identical dream. They saw a woman running at night through an unknown...
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Alternatives to DSM & ICD

Mental Health and Control: Consideration of a Genuine Paradigm Change

There is widespread agreement in the mental health field that change is required. There is much less agreement, however, on what it is that needs to change. Some have gone so far as to call for a paradigm shift, although it’s not entirely clear what paradigm we are currently in much less which paradigm...
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