Alternatives to DSM & ICD

The One-On-One Program: A Remarkable Alternative to the Psychiatric Drugging of Our Youth

Today, when parents express a concern about their youth’s behavior, mood or attention span to a physician, typically within a matter of minutes this expressed concern is translated into a mental illness conceptualization using the DSM.  The parents are then sent on their way, prescription in hand. For those of us who believe that...
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Pressing Issues

Mental Health or Mental Illness: A Policy Concern

In December of 2013, Congressman Timothy Murphy proposed the “Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act” (HR 3717). The bill proposes an inherent distinction between “mental health” and “mental illness”. In essence, the bill proposes broad changes to the current mental health system. According to the Huffington Post, Congressman Murphy proposes to initiate an...
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Critiques of Diagnosis

Parental Dilemnas – Diagnosis of their loved ones

“I would do anything to help my child,” is a common sentiment expressed by the vast majority of parents whenever they are at an important choice point in their child’s development. It is therefore not surprising that parents actively consider all options available to support their child’s learning and social behaviour in school, anyone...
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Proposing Alternatives

A Tale of Two Epistemologies: Part 2

Thinking, Living and Practicing in Two Worldviews Relational Epistemology informs Justice oriented Clinical Practice As may be evident from the reflections in part 1, we think, live, and practice in two worldviews or epistemologies, the “scientific” “objective Realism” paradigm and the relational perspectival paradigm. We are more familiar with the former, underlying our not...
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Current Status of Dx

A Psychological Vision of Life Beyond the Disease Model

It’s easy to become jaded about academic conferences. You fly at enormous expense across many time-zones to enjoy the dubious delights of corporate tourism – natural Edens questionably enhanced by international capitalism with a thin veneer of local colour. To justify the tawdry tourism, we see poorly-attended seminars presenting work that hasn’t (yet) managed...
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Cultural Issues

Emotions: Finding a Path through the Chaos of Current Beliefs

Understanding the realm of emotions is beset by an elemental difficulty: the meaning of words that refer to emotion are so ambiguous that we hardly know what we are talking about. Virginia Woolf stated it succinctly: “The streets of London have their map; but our passions are uncharted” (1922). Compared to maps of the...
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Critiques of Diagnosis

The War on Grief

The DSM-5, the most recent version of psychiatry’s diagnostic bible, makes it possible to classify grieving that endures beyond a rather brief span of time as a mental illness. This pathologizing of grief has ancient roots extending back at least as far as the Stoics, whose stern ascetic morality preached a perfect indifference that eschewed all passionate attachments....
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