Alternatives 2012

I was invited to give a Keynote Address at the 2012 Alternatives Conference in Portland Oregon, a federally funded annual SAMHSA conference that brings together more than 1000 peer specialists, advocates, policy makers, and people in mental health recovery to learn about and discuss new directions for mental health services. I created a survey for input on my talk and below are the results (add your input to the survey here: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/YMH9B28) :
  

What are 10 innovations, projects, policies, or practices that every mental health agency should implement to TRULY promote mental health recovery — and human liberation?

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They should be replaced and go out of business.

9/11/2012 12:18 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1 stop using threats to submit patients. 2 address police brutality and death by police? 3 mental health advance directives for all patients when starting care 4 freedom of speech in hospitals 5 stop drug washouts 6 PTSD from childhood sexual abuse, why wont Providence Portland let their patients talk about this?? (freedom of speech and freedom of grief in hospitals) 7 ban hospitals build respite 8 community education or outreach about what’s avail 9 alt treatments (why is everyone on methadone while people are getting off meth and heroin in 3 days with ibiogaine treatments? Why is Obama admin going after med marijuana community in such a harsh way?) 10 stop saying mental illness is like diabetes and must be treated as such and that “bipolar” is being used in a derogatory way in the workplace and in public..

8/24/2012 6:35 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Why professionals should want clients to investigate the MEANING of extreme states/hallucinations/psychosis, how this can be therapeutic when directed by the client themselves, how this can be part of recovery. Why professionals should not be so fearful of psychosis and symptoms and want to get rid of them right away… unless the client is clear that they, themselves want to get rid of the symptoms right away.

8/4/2012 12:12 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. chi gong and/or tai chi as supplemental 2. an open HVN group…. imagine numerous agencies having such! 3. a lending library full of supportive books, including ALL and ANY of the many books written BY survivors, and about surviving psychiatry, and institutions (and all the works mentioned in Agnes’s Jacket!! 4. peer art groups (slightly different than art “therapy”) … and art shows of client work, and other art, everywhere… 5. plants in every office and halls and everywhere 6. peer facilitated groups, and peer/client “lectures” and panels with and also FOR the “other” kind of professionals 7. complete CHOICE and solid education about CHOICE re: medications (would include your book on getting OFF…) 8. newsletters made up primarily of peer articles, suggestions, references, poetry, personal stories… 9. ongoing panels for discussion of alternative approaches… historical and newly developing… 10. book study of Agnes’s Jacket!

7/26/2012 6:07 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

TRUE informed, meaningful consent, part of which means being informed that drugs do not treat any underlying biological issue and are dangerous. But even further, I think part of true informed consent would be informing people that the theory that they have a mental illness at all is one that can never be proven nor disproven.

7/24/2012 12:18 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

offer homeopathy medicine, educate staff in residential/foster/hospital settings about individual success stories of recovery- staff need hope also !! offer a plan for how someone diagnosed can actually obtain alternatives to prescription drugs , and find a way to define those that must have meds and those who don’t

7/20/2012 10:40 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. All residential programs need to address the current atrocious handling of releases and the transition back into the community. “Release” from a residential program is a critical point in time for a person’s recovery. Current practices that entail a “treatment plan” are a farce, totally unrealistic, and allow the agencies to “blame the patient” when, not unexpectedly, they often fail. Agencies must devote personnel and resources to direct community work to ensure that the necessary community resources are present and effectively engaged for this transition to be negotiated successfully. This cannot be reasonably be expected without meaningful integration into the community by the recovering person. This is a big order because it runs counter to the still prevailing notion that the locus of so-called “mental illness” is internal to the person and, once “fixed”, the person is then “ready” and should be able to “take care of themselves” upon release. Wrong!! 2. We need to invest in the research and demonstration development of the Soteria type projects that were unfortunately terminated back in the ’70s when the “medical model” folks took over the “mental health” field.

7/19/2012 1:33 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Trauma-informed care. Dialectical behavior therapy and mindfulness skills (especially for women who self-harm and/or have been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder).. Dietary and nutritional counseling on food allergies and gluten-free/GAPS diet. Art therapy in a variety of disciplines/modalities. Body-focused therapies like Hakomi, massage, somatic experiencing. Gender and sexual orientation sensitivity training for workers. Open Dialogue/Hearing Voices approach for voice-hearers. Sandra Bloom’s Sanctuary Model implemented in inpatient settings to reduce violence, seclusion, and restraint and create a respectful, non-retraumatizing experience for patients. Peer wellness specialists. Support for people who are parenting with a mental illness.

7/19/2012 12:02 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Massachusetts is obsessed with “risk” to providers, but NOT to us! Any people with diagnosed ‘mental’ conditions are four times more at risk for violence than those not so diagnosed. Yet, where are our laws that are named for our victims, where is our press with pathos inducing stories? Where are our panic buttons when our staff rape, beat, or just practice daily microagressions? Just? The Recovery movement, especially peer facilitators, peer educators, peer advocates and peer ‘specialist’ must voice the link, the life giving link, to recovery, forged by human rights. Until we stand up, fully, nothing is going to change. Speak out about so-called ‘sitgma’ especially as it relates to ‘personality disorders’. What claptrap, and yet do incredibly damaging! out about the increasingly known health consequences not only of much over prescribed psych meds,but how prejudice and discrimination makcoe us more medically vulnerable! Speak out about the realities that we are the least employed of any group of people with disabilities. Speak out about self determination!! Speak out for those of us who are aging, as they are the majority of people served in community mental health services. What does ‘recovery’ mean for us? What efforts is SAMSHA making to ensure that we are not “leveled” into nursing homes. that we too can “age in place.” Speak to the issue of having people in the LGBTQqIi community who receive services from homophobic providers and who live in fear, who have gone back in the closet as a result of this! Spake to the nation wide shame that direct care AND social workers, mh counselors, and rehab counselors make so very little.

7/18/2012 2:43 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Greater access to choices and treatment for low-income consumers. Create a model community health program in which alternative treatment providers, including somatic providers pledge an hour every week (donate their time pro bono) to a low-income individual who has been labeled with severe, persistent ‘mental illness in recovery. Receive a state tax break in return. Create an integrated system of care in whi Creating safe residential communities for our children where they can heal their broken hearts without being damaged, restrained, humiliated, forcibly medicated, and stigmatized. Train attorney’s, judges, and probation officers, and doctors to evaluate risk differently. Probation officers and PSRB has too much discretion over our children’s lives. Ignorant people should not have the power to order harmful treatment as a part of a person’s conditional release from jail or the hospital. Create access to healthy, locally grown, organic food for low-income consumers and hospitalized individuals. Revitalize the diet/nutrition of people in POSH and OSH Salem/Pendleton. Address the lies that lie at the foundation of our mental health system.My husband was told by a licensed social worker—an employee of Sacred Heart hospital where my daughter was committed after a particularly bad episode: “Your daughter will always be this way. She will have to come to terms with her disease like people with diabetes and take psychiatric medication for life” She made my husband cry. How can I forgive this ignorant mental health worker? She needs more help than my daughter, me, and my husband combined.

7/17/2012 7:36 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Peer Delivered Support Services-Oregon AMH

7/17/2012 11:43 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1) Soterias in every state, of course! 2) Peer-run overnight crisis alternatives 3) Publically-funded withdrawal facilities for individuals wishing to come off psych drugs 4) Housing First approach 5) Open Dialogue-ish responsiveness to crisis 6) Services not dependent on subscribing to a label; Medicaid changes to support this 7) Publically-funded research into alternatives 8) The Naturopathic viewpoint; information about gut health; thorough testing for food intolerances, etc. (voluntary of course!) 9) Any publically-funded mental health services that provides food (such as peer centers) should have real food 10) Years ago, I heard about a project in five states that gave people receiving mental health services the option of taking cash instead of services (with the one restriction that they meet somewhat regularly with a budget counselor). I don’t know how it turned out, but sure sounded promising! 11) 24-hour streaming of Madness Radio in all mental health offices

7/15/2012 7:46 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

LANGUAGE CHANGE CHOICE OF DRUGS OR NO DRUGS CHOICE OF THERAPIES!!! (from Art therapy, Dance, to Psychedelics like Iboga, LSD, Ashwaganhda, etc.) EDUCATION about HISTORY of PEERS and HUMAN OPPRESSION DIVERSE definitions of “RECOVERY”

7/15/2012 5:25 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Creating the space to be heard and that means also that the Mental Health Agency employees needs to listen to themselves as their own self in this present moment along with memorial trauma of their own lives. For the Agency to Advocate to this larger picture of collaboration with all people in all of the specific roles and identities especially those that have power politically and finacially. To truely deal with Mental health the people at the top have to recognize they are contributing to Mental Illness by holding themselves above it all and being uneffected. To commit to a healthier Nation we must all address we are in this together. One day a year we as a counry. Meet your neighbor and have a meal together. As A Policy almost all businesses would shut down similar to Christmas Day.

7/13/2012 6:55 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. Peer run respites, 2. care for the Whole person, integrate health, body, mind and spirit 3. Shared decision making in psychiatrist/ client relationship

7/13/2012 1:22 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. No drug money! Before we can create a healthy relationship with drugs in our culture, we must escape the influence of the industry that produces them 2. Horizontal Structures! Before there can be any understanding of so-called “mental health”, we must have political health and organizational health. Creating agencies of change means doing away with models that have not worked (i.e. the corporate model, pyramidal system) and create or revisit ones that have worked, such as consensus-based decision-making communities that are cooperative and BOLD. No more Executive Directors! 3. A concrete plan to make the agency obsolete with a time frame and the goal for every “professional” in the agency to work towards the demise of their position in the company. However, for those agencies that make themselves obsolete and can prove this, each worker from the organization should be guaranteed grants to start up their own organization(s). Power to the people! 4. The creation of “Consumer” or more to my liking “People” Advisory Boards for every organization as is required by law for many programs but is consistently ignored by these same programs. Every organization should have in place one of these advisory boards (please see “City-Wide Mental Health Project”). 5. A commitment to the Earth – that the agency recognizes the earth as the provider of all health and that without its sustenance, there is no health. From this commitment, mindful policies and practices will follow It’s getting late and I’m tired but I will send the next 5 suggestions at a later date…

7/10/2012 7:27 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1.We should be re-thinking Mental Health thru a human rights lens: that what we currently term ‘mental illness’ has both its cause and its remedy in human rights – that the former results from insults to one’s humanity that lead to disconnection from the human community, the remedy for which is a society that actively reaches out and seeks to restore connection with the person whose trust in the human community has been violated 2. We should be thinking about peer support from an community development perspective versus integrating with provider networks – a leading voice for this perspective is Intentional Peer Support by Shery Mead 3. We should be actively challenging the Detrimental debilitating influence of Big Pharma and conventional medication-saturated psychiatry, actively investing in identifying and researching potential alternatives and providing people with options and support for accessing and implementing alternatives to pyschiatric medication usage in response to mental distress and extreme states 4. David Webb’s book – thinking about suicide – the idea that our voices and our experience should be the prominently voice of ‘expertise’ in any solutions society seeks to discover 5. Hearing Voices network – ditto 6. CPRD – convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, including a growing international concensus that forced treatment of any kind is a human rights violation 7. Tina Minkowitz’s work in supported decision-making as a challenge to conventional wisdom that allows peopel to be declared “incompetent” and have their decision-making powers overtaken by “substitute” decision-makers

7/8/2012 6:36 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

I think that looking at access to health care as a human right is a policy that is important for Will to address.

7/8/2012 2:15 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

I don’t believe that the unprecedented success of Open Dialogue should be discounted. The statistics don’t lie; the statistics prove that Open Dialogue is a radically better therapy program than our standard medical model of treating mental distress. The success of Open Dialogue is based on social support that is truly supportive. It reduces the radical difference of power between therapist and the distressed; this promotes addressing real life problems that cause mental distress. This should be affirming for an audience of peer specialists who are typically far better able to truly empathize with emotional suffering. True empathy promotes a valuable therapeutic connection. I plan to be at the conference and look forward to hearing you speak. Best wishes, Steve Spiegel

7/7/2012 5:00 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. The very important notion that all who experience mental illness and the families who experience a beloved one with mental illness that he/she is not their lable. Can’t ever forget this because it’s important. We tend to forget this so it must be repeated over and again and again…

7/6/2012 10:26 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1 – peer leadership – without that, what’s the point? 2 – co-working,co-production, co-learning – we need to set aside our differences and work together 1 and 2 may seem to conflict, but until people accept a possibility of peer leadership, can there be true co-production or will it always be tokenistic?

7/6/2012 4:04 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

– Open Dialougue – Collaborative Pathways – increased numbers of peer specialists in all aspects of treatment

7/6/2012 5:30 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Please discuss the importance of Honesty vs scripted / prescribed ideas. Honesty is the main ingredient in promoting mental health. “Transparency” is called for in the world of Politics; Honesty is called for in the world of Mental Health.

7/4/2012 12:34 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Hi Will Hall, my name is W___. My brother was diagnosed with SZ when I was 13. I totally embraced biomedical model because it was a big step forward from mother blame although I knew it was not the solution. I also had a psychotic episode when I was 33. I survived my care my brohter did not. He is chronically ill, brain damaged from shock treatment and has severe insulin dependent diabetes from his antipsychotics. I have been in this game a long time. I am pushing the Joshua Tree Project in Canada. I am on my own for the most part. I believe what is required to move us forward in a more focused knowledge skill strategy acquisition. I believe we need to create an Altered States Research Recovery and Learning Lab. People have no skill and there is no real research evidence to begin fighting with. We need to create that. I used to teach a seminar called Altered States Communications. Thank Will for his work. We are all out here feeling hopeless and discouraged most of the time.

7/4/2012 11:11 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

We need to begin replicating Loren Moshers Soteria work. Offering Med free treatment to first break sufferers in studies run side by side with normal medication protocal treatment. Have an ER or other referral source randomly send patients suffering first time psychotic symptoms to a regular hospital ward and meds or a Soteria like setting and no meds. Look at longer term outcomes. Second, Open Dialogue work needs to get implemented in at least a couple communities in this country. Promotiion of Hearing Voices on a wide scale in the USA. No reason that HV groups should not be as common as Alcoholics Anonymous–well maybe not quite that wide spread. There are more people with alcohol problems then Voice hearers I think. We need to educate professionals who are resistant to HV approach out of unfounded fears. Speak about statement made in new book Rethinking Madness by Paris Williams, I believe on bottom of page 47 or 48 that the research when viewed honestly supports that treatment without meds should be offered as the ethical first choice. It is in a 1 line footnote but in my opinion is a revolutionary statement.

7/4/2012 4:52 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. Open dialogue practices and peer support, such as that accessible through Hearing Voices Networks and Empowerment Initiatives. 2. Trieste-style access to work through participation in socially cooperative businesses.

7/3/2012 4:36 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Glad you’re asking. I am working on a book about the participation of nurses in the drugging of our nation’s hospitalized mentally ill patients. They are, after all, the ones who are charged with the responsibility of assessing and administering the powerful antipsychotics, and not a one of them has looked beyond the medical model to question a psychiatrist’s order. There are four million nurses in this country, and every one of them needs to awaken to the crisis of damaging side-effects from psychotropic medicaton. Everyone is looking at the doctors who are prescribing, but what about the responsibility that nurses have to advocate for their patients? And what about the fact that reporting adverse drug events is VOLUNTARY? I worked in psych units–at Magnet designated hospitals–for over 10 years and despite that my patients were drooling, shaking, diabetic, increasingly manic and depressed, falling on their faces, brain-fogged and hypertensive, NEVER was one report ever made to the FDA about the side effects. And these adverse drug event reports are voluntary? I say, WAKE UP THE NURSING PROFESSION!!!

7/3/2012 3:19 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Not being in recovery makes it dificult, but rather than drugs, ir seems some could use safe homes, shadows, or buddies to help individuals make it through tough times.

7/3/2012 10:53 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. Quit promoting the chemical imbalance theory. 2. Promote true and honest informed consent to treatment, incluging drugs. 3. Make available alternative treatments other than toxic drugs. 4. Emphasize the importance of hope. 5. Promote and support recovery in every way possible. Quit telling people they will always be sick. 6. Quit labeling people with diagnoses, especially the quack diagnoses. 7. Do away with the DSM. 8. Promote education on tapering off the toxic drugs 9. Stop forced treatment. 10. Promote making human connections and the return to talk therapy.

7/3/2012 9:23 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

– Conduct a series of independent, government funded research trials into the drug efficacy v. placebo; and the long term effects of psychiatric drug use. This “debate” needs to be settled once and for all. – Treat your patients as human beings, not walking labels. – Genuine ethical standards. The current approach which allows clinicians to outright lie to patients (re: chemical imbalance) is not reconcilable with informed consent. – If you’re going to lock people up involuntarily, then they should at least offer some treatment beyond just medication and finger painting! – The notion of involuntary hospitalisation should be an option of last resort, and if the patient has alternative, less restrictive alternatives, then they should be able to do that. – Recognition within Psychiatry that a Psych ward isn’t a therapeutic environment for everyone. – Banning of ghost written medical journal articles.

7/2/2012 1:51 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. Encourage people to apply the teachings offered by VISIONS, Inc. about target/non-target identities regarding how to communicate effectively across difference in order to create more humane, responsive, supportive institutions as well as interactions on the interpersonal level. 2. Utilize the human variation perspective as posited by Kay Schriner in her article called “Disability and Institutional Change” to inspire people to work to create and sustain more responsive policies and practices that foster humane, inclusive working environments that benefit all people, regardless of what issues they personally experience. 3. Understand the notion of stereotype threat as discussed in Whistling Vivaldi by Claude Steele and the damage that is daily inflicted on people with mental health diagnoses related to the fear of stigmatization. Counsel people experiencing stereotype threat regarding their rights and help them restore a sense of well-being and humanity through responsive institutional practices. 4. Similarly, consider how the concept of “microagressions”, as discussed in “Racial Microagressions in Everyday Life” by Derald Sue also applies to people with mental health diagnoses and how society and the medical community, especially, continually inflict harm whether consciously or unconsciously through dehumanizing language and institutional practices. 5. Underscore the importance of peer-led support groups that are non-hierarchical and that utilize a radically democratic, inclusive, and confidential framework, such as Wildflowers in Los Angeles. 6. Incorporate the possibility of a spiritual framework for understanding non-ordinary states of consciousness, i.e., the works of Michael Cornwall and John Perry as part of the recovery and integration process. 7. Apply Bobbie Haro’s Cycle of Liberation to working for justice and equity related to any form of modern oppression, including that which is experienced by people with mental health diagnoses.

7/2/2012 12:01 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

The livlihood of people who work in mental health agencies is dependent on the existence of mental illness or mental distress, no matter what it is called. If these agencies truly wanted to promote mental health recovery in the greatest number of people, they would empower the clients to find their own ways to recover, even if the methods are at odds with officially sanctioned projects, policies or practices. These agencies should resist official sanctioning of said projects, policies or practices because as soon as these become part of their Bible, they become part of the problem. These agencies should not fall back on what the “research” says, they should resist the urge to tell people that there is no evidence for whatever it is that the person thinks will help make them better. Safe bets are yoga, meditation, art, music, reading great psychiatric literature and poetry of liberation, plenty of nature walks and gardening. Problematic is group therapy (we are not all alike!) Obviously, medication is a no-no, with the possible exception of very short term use during acute episodes. I suspect that the vast majority of “mental patients” get to the point they are at because they have no sense of self. Reconstructing a self takes years. Good therapists are worth their weight in gold, but it’s got to be one on one.

7/2/2012 8:20 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Here’s my list of 10 programs: http://corinnawest.com/10-model-programs-to-create-complete-mental-health-recovery/ Also, I should have added Shery Mead’s IPS to this list. But I think social entrepreneurship is becoming a more important approach. I think all of those above programs have limited impact because no one is looking at it from a business perpective and no one has a clue how to scale up peer support. Even the Brass Tacs Peer Scaleup grant had no criteria at all for business scale up.

7/2/2012 5:22 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Exercise as therapy Spiritual groups Job Counselling Inform Prescription drug users of all side effects as a legal requirement Allow presription drug users to choose to take meds in every case abandon forced drugging and ect – violation of human rights encourage “patient” support groups with patients as moderators Encourage patients to learn from those that recovered -by bringing them together Request that psyc doctors recieve better education on non drug therapy Stop using labels and look for humanistic approach to suffering rather than quasi science

7/1/2012 6:24 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. We must learn to impact standards of care- so many worthwhile projects face major barriers due to lack of reimbursements (both private & public) and/ or liability issues. (what WE should do!) 2. Peer-RUN services that are autonomous from the service delivery system yet work with them, not “adjunct to”. 3. ALL service delivery whether mh, sud or even corrections should be trauma-informed, actually, I would say MUST BE. It really is the only way the integration under the ACA will really work, unless we all end up in mega-state hospitals or prison. 4. While I would vote for med-free service delivery, I know THAT’S never going to happen, but medication optimization, other services first before meds, (like Open Dialogue) and keeping med use to lowest therapeutically beneficial doses plus with an eye to short term use would be great. 5. Peer-DELIVERED services within the service delivery system, with equitable pay scales & chances for advancement. 6. The service delivery system could go a LONG way to helping society as a whole value all types of diversity, including cognitive & neural. They could start by treating patients & clients with respect & by valuing their lived experience. 7. All policy tables should include “consumers” (in the broader sense of the word) and other stakeholders, not just state employees, professional policy-makers & providers, as is often the case.And with proper supports. NASMHPD wrote a nice paper on this a LONG time ago, 1983, I think, that has adequate guidelines. (actually in our current state contracts with the behavioral managed care companies, although they ignore it completely) 8. I like a strong emphasis on creative & spiritual interventions, another reason I LOVE TIC. Reimbursable. 9. Funding should be blended (not braided) like the Milwaukee Wraparound model, so there are no silo’d funding streams that create barriers to services. Emphasis on comprehensive, IMMEDIATE social supports with the expectation of future citizenship. 10. SSA needs a complete redesign, from having to wait years to access benefits (should be SAME DAY) to the treacherous disincentives for getting off entitlement benefits, and again, with the expectation of future emancipation, but tailored to the individual. .

7/1/2012 6:08 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

My mental health consultancy wrote about 20 points for our local service provider. They ignored just about all of them. Here are ten of them. 1 Set up a 24 hour non-medical sanctuary for people with enduring mental distress 2 Set up an overnight phone line with trained counsellors for long term service users 3 Offer medication free options to all service users 4 Make sure all services inform service users of the full range of effects of medication before they decide to take them so they can make informed decisions about taking them 5 Set up a psychiatric medication withdrawal service 6 The use of psychiatric medication for conduct disorders in children needs to be investigated and alternatives provided 7 Start some kind of forum for GPs on non-medical ways of helping people facing mental distress 8 Initiate short courses on therapy and counselling for psychosis aimed at statutory and voluntary sector providers of talking therapies 9 Make ‘forming trusting relationships’ between staff and among service users and between service users as the core of all work. This may need to be in service contracts and monitored. 10 Create services which are relevant to the large number of survivors of child sexual assault and family violence amongst those who experience the extremes of mental distress. This may partly be appropriate talking therapies, but also mean that most service providers need to be comfortable talking about these issues and dealing with them appropriately, not just referring on to another service, even if their role is not to provide intense and ongoing support.

7/1/2012 3:48 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

This is from Corinna West’s post http://www.madinamerica.com/2012/05/3-minutes-to-create-medication-optimization-for-the-whole-us/ Medicate with lowest effective dose, disseminate safe tapering plan Patient safety should be the paramount goal in any medication optimization plan. Dosages should be adjusted to the lowest effective dose for an individual, which may be much lower than those set by pharmaceutical companies in clinical trials. (I would add: Medicate only when non-drug interventions fail. Never medicate in situational depression, grief, or other situational distress; rather, work to ameliorate the situation instead of exposing the individual to drug risks.) Every patient should be afforded the opportunity to safely discontinue medication upon remission, lack of efficacy, or should adverse effects outweigh benefits. Please consider this excellent plan developed by a coalition of patient advocates and adopted in Ashland, Ohio http://www.mentalhealthexcellence.org/Portals/2/Foundation%20Documents/Medication_optimization_in_the_service_of_recovery.pdf As “taper very gradually” is interpreted variously, I would add a recommendation of a 10% taper each month for 2 months. Increase speed of taper if no withdrawal symptoms in the first 2 months or if they last only a few days. Lower the amount of decrement (e.g. 5%) if withdrawal symptoms appear at 10% decrements in the first month or two. All withdrawal symptoms are potentially serious. Taking the more conservative route slowing the rate of reduction reduces risk to the patient’s nervous system. Some individuals may be so sensitive to dosage reductions they can tolerate only decrements of a fraction of a milligram per month or longer. Utilize tablet-splitting, liquid preparations, and compounded medications to supply customized daily dosage. (The 2-month trial taper is because sometimes it takes some weeks for withdrawal symptoms to show up, and if they do, slowing the taper will reduce neurological damage to the patient.)

7/1/2012 12:51 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

meditation, mediation, listening, non-violent communication, mindfulness, acceptance, honesty, non-judgemental stance, health care alternatives, Traditional Chinese Medicine

7/1/2012 12:38 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. Trauma Informed Care Principles. Being familiar with the Adverse Childhood Effects (ACE) study will go a long way in “re-shaping” how people characterize (think about) the behaviors/emotions they’re seeing/hearing. 2. Medication Optimazation Prinicples. You were there, so no need to expound. 3. SAMHSA’s Recovery Principles 4. Peer Services should be available in all communities. BRIDGES, WRAP, etc. should be available. Peer services have to be viewed as a true alternative to “traditional” services not an adjunct. 5. Case Rate/Per Member Per Month flexible funding versus fee-for-service models which promote illness not recovery and wellness. 6. Reconceptualization of what Diagnosis is and to what extent it should be used. I’m Ok using just one DSM diagnosis, “Adjustment Disorder with Mixed Disturbance of Emotions and Conduct” This diagnosis covers all the challenges we face in living life. Seems sufficient to me. 7. Similar to med-opt. Long term use of psych meds should be prohibited in light of the preponderance of evidence of their negative physical effects and negative effects on recovery. 8. Supported Employment programs should be a mainstay in both peer and professional services. Recovery HAS to include meaningful activity. For many competitive employment is that. 9. Motivational Interviewing approaches are respectful and should be widespread. 10. Integrated Mental Health and Substance Use services for those struggling with both these issues.

7/1/2012 12:16 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Dear Will, The testimony of your life is far and away the most important thing you bring as a keynote speaker. People in the Mental Health industry want to believe that psychopharmaceuticals relieve suffering and promote wellness and functionality. They have every job security and profit motive to believe that. I believe anyone that is in emotional distress feels a fair amount of shame for getting to a place of unmanagability. I believe that person needs to be reminded of their dignity. Um, it should be obvious that there is no quick fix to human behaviorial problems. My “bipolar” recovery consisted of getting off of the drugs and learning the 12 steps of AA. I sometimes wonder why I didn’t become an alcoholic instead of psych drug addict and if there is any true difference. Anyways, I could never support a peer specialist model that allows those peers to take drugs and spout the wonders of drug treatment. I admire you a lot for wanting to help others find meaning in their “madness” and promoting self-determination for a vulnerable and mishandled group of people. Thank you for creating the Freedom Center and Madness Radio, aren’t those the real alternatives out there?

7/1/2012 11:33 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Therapy that is based upon the assumption that all emotional distress involves the phenomenon of shame , and shame arises out of family, local and social relationship experiences. The idea that the reason many therapies do not work (which justifies drugging) is because shame, if unacknowledged, creates a shame spiral. That is, shame is at work within the therapeutic relationship itself, if the therapy does not pull shame into the light as the center of the work process. Shame is at the core of relationships. Trauma results in shame, or is an experience of shame. Social division, stigma, class, etc. revolve around shame. Forced treatment, imposing discrediting diagnosis, and side effects of forced treatment all exacerate shame. The alternative treatments that work (i.e. treating schizophrenia as a family disease) involve working at the level of relationships, thus involve issues of shame. Shame illuminating therapy bring it all together, what biopsychiatry denies. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy does not acknowledge or deal with shame, but rather encourages patient to control their thoughts and suppress shame, to mimic the supposed benefits of drugs. Our social structure uses shame for social control purposes. Thus shame awareness involves both liberation from the mental health system, but also seeing how the mental health system operates to deny social trauma in the larger system of social control.

7/1/2012 8:31 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 2. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 3. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 4. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 5. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 6. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 7. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 8. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 9. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging. 10. Stop raping our brains with forced drugging.

7/1/2012 7:18 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Psych med withdrawal program should be at the top of the list. It is disgraceful that people still can’t rely on medical professionals to safely get off these meds. For more information, see http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/index

7/1/2012 7:10 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Skateboarding!! Additionally, we need meet-ups/support groups lead by trained peer facilitators to support people who have made a decision to reduce or come off of psychiatric medications. It’s a lonely and sometimes painful process which the mental health system is not equipt to address. They need us!

7/1/2012 6:42 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Greetings Wi££ ~ May you be at peace , sending much love and peace your way. Great idea to ask us < what is important . Best. Regards. As. A£ways .. Remain. EVO£utionary 1) Practice of Intentiona£ Peer Support created by Shery Mead 2) On going Intervoice information must be imp£emented in an assertive manner in the. United. States to reach mainstream Systems ( e.g. Schoo£s , Media ) 3) Direct. Action. Advocacy How ~. Why ~ To Do It Workshop Se’ve£ppm ent 4) Spiritual£ity and. Madness Se’ve£op. A. Forum Speakers .. Artists.. Poets.. Interactive. In. Structure On going in £oca£ Communities 5) Documentaries Of. The. £Ives We. Rea££y. Do. Have .. Enjoy and are. Mad£y. Proud. About 6) Your. Commitment to. Inform. Us of the resu£TS and. Fina£. Outcome of this survey. 7) Thank. Yourse£f < Roe

7/1/2012 6:25 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Trialogue (Open dialogue between service users, carers, and professionals) http://tallatrialogue.blogspot.com/ http://www.trialogue.co/ https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tallaght-Trialogue-Group/322433011118244?sk=info Hearing Voices Groups Advanced Directives Right of advocacy Abolition of state coercion to achieve “therapeutic” goals Prosecution against psychiatrists for crimes contrary to the hippocratic oath and patient welfare, human rights, reputation, etc.

7/1/2012 6:19 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

“…(Robert)Whitaker’s warning Some of the most unsettling and influential condemnation is found in the book by Robert Whitaker.7 Mr Whitaker has little quarrel with the appropriate short-term use of psychiatric medication, but he does have major concerns about long-term use and related issues in psychiatry. Read the book but try to avoid reactive denial, because what he says may feel threatening to your self-esteem, ideals, and career. Following are some of Whitaker’s key themes: • Psychiatric disability has increased concomitantly with the increase in psychotropic prescriptions • Long-term medications may be unnecessary for many patients, including subgroups of patients who have schizophrenia, and in some cases, drugs may make the illness worse • Withdrawal symptoms may be worse than previously thought, especially when medications are suddenly stopped • Medications may cause a chemical imbalance in the brain rather than correcting a chemical imbalance • Psychiatric thought leaders have been unduly influenced by large incentives from pharmaceutical companies, and these relationships have not been adequately disclosed • Premature or inaccurate diagnosis can lead to medication treatments that can precipitate a more severe disorder (eg, mistaking ADHD or unipolar depression for bipolar disorder)”~Psychiatric Times article A GOOD STRATEGY TO REDUCE THE STIGMA OF “MENTAL ILLNESS”: -Reject the labels of psychiatry and their DSM(Diagnostic and Statical Manual of Mental Illness), and assert your right to REFUSE treatment as well as receive it. -Don’t accept any physical/medical treatment that hasn’t been preceded by a demonstrable underlying physical trigger or cause (in YOUR body, not a theoretical body) that the treatment targets, not a theoretical physical condition based only on dubious, often marketing-oriented “junk” science intended to promote the use of drugs or shock (ECT). -IT IS THE PSYCHIATRIC LABELS THAT TEND TO STIGMATIZE PEOPLE, NOT THE SYMPTOMS ASSOCIATED WITH THEM, and tend to justify psychiatric treatment and it’s mental health monopoly of drugs and shock treatment. The symptoms of these so called “illnesses” or “disorders” are human problems with emotion, perception, thought, memory, and life experiences that are very real, but are not typically “diagnosed” on the basis of ANY underlying physical conditions. -The labeling process in typical psychiatric diagnosis is not a medical diagnosis involving an evaluation and discovery of underlying physical conditions, it allows a bio-medical monopoly on human problems, and continued unethical and unjust profits for the medical and pharmaceutical establishment. Don’t allow yourself/others to be labeled in this manner. -Psychiatrists frequently “demonize” these “illnesses” by suggesting that persons “diagnosed” are a danger, or threat to themselves and/or others, and that these “illnesses” are incurable, justifying continued treatment (typically a drug oriented form). This IS the stigma that tends to result in the conclusion (of those “diagnosed”, and others who know the person has been “diagnosed”) that people “diagnosed” don’t get better and are “permanently” disabled. -AND, unfortunately long term psychiatric patients subjected to their physical treatments often do become very physically ill and disabled as the result of the treatment, not as the result of the fictitious “mental illness”, as those promoting psychiatric treatment typically suggest. -Insist on and seek alternatives to the monopoly of psychiatry’s bio-medical model and treatments, and DSM oriented system of so called “diagnosis. (no copyright, Like · · Share…)

7/1/2012 5:57 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

They are addressed in this vision – http://discoverandrecover.wordpress.com/mental-health-freedom-and-recovery-act/ Duane

6/30/2012 10:15 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

therapy – not case management – therapy . . . creative, innovative, unfolding therapy. . . . currently cannot think of nine other things, but repeatedly I see this aspect of the work missing. People cycling round and round in mainstream Mental health services . . never getting to know themselves, their stories, their journey,their worlds and how it all might have a direction they never get to look at . .

6/30/2012 6:04 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

occupy mindfulness

6/29/2012 7:21 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–         

 

What else should Will include in his Keynote?

 

Discus the power of psychiatry and talk about what we can do to take it away.

9/11/2012 12:18 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

I think the absolute emphasis should be on quality of life for the person in distress. In order for that to happen people would need to be taken much more seriously. It is a slap in the face that people are only offered drugs. Insurances don’t cover anything else. So nothing else is available to most people. If drugs one to twenty-two didn’t do anything for you, you just get put on drug twenty-three. That’s not quality of life oriented care. That’s rather like making experiments on guinea pigs. With diagnosis people get often taken away their whole lives. People don’t get employed (even when not actively “symptomatic”, just rumours are sufficient.) People lose custody for their kids. And everybody is like OF COURSE they do. I don’t think – as you do – that the mental health system has any chance to develop into something better. Whatever institutions provide will be a one-size-fits-all thing as that is all that institutions can do and what they have been designed for. We get misled being told that mental illness was taken seriously as a medical condition. That’s not the case. The general behaviour of hospital staff is “Do not dare to fuck with me!” as if distress was a behavioural choice and could just be overcome by more self-control. There are no examples where people get told that broken legs could be overcome with self-control. At least not by medicine. Even with alternative approaches all the power remains with the medical staff. And that’s wrong. As I see it, nobody has any really convincing answers of where madness comes from and how to deal with it. So there should be a lot more patient choice. With an emphasis on quality of life by all means. With an emphasis on quality of contact in interaction. And a lot of humility concerning things that nobody really has any convincing answers to.

9/6/2012 2:13 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

OH, more service men and women are now dying at higher rates by suicide on US soil than in battle. Veterans are losing their benifits b/c of mental health problems and their suicide rate is climbing at 20 plus percent a year, however PTSD from childhood sex abuse is not really being supported as much as new vets…

8/24/2012 6:35 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

ideas and suggestions for bringing MORE of the info to the US, ….. awareness of how and why so many in the US are simply un-aware, or down right antagonistic in hearing of alternative approaches… numerous ways to work with that struggle…. …. some ideas/information about bridging the seeming gap between the “world” of severe trauma, and the HVN movement….. the GAP that seems to exist between those who advocate for survivors of abuse, and those who advocate for survivors of psychiatry….. historically, and much of the literature, the two “worlds” do not overlap as much as they certainly could…… why is there not MORE sharing of research and information and ideas??? beside the idea that possibly AL/mostL people “experience voices” at some point in their life, place the notion that, quite liekely, ALL/most people “are multiple” or “experience multiplicity” in one way or another, and perhaps professionals and other survivors as well can learn a great deal about mapping their systems” …. the need to change the language used…. even the way we understand HEALING… is it a once-for -all acheivement? or a life-long process, wherein BEING with the process IS the sign of healing…

7/26/2012 6:07 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

I think it is crucial that we encourage people not to identify with their labels. It is crucial that we not affirm these labels, because if we do then no matter how “radical” we want to be, we are already hooked in to the system, the need to appeal to the authorities on such labels, the semiotic logic by which my emotions are always already connected to drugs (e.g. if my understanding of my emotion is that I’m depressed, even if I don’t yet think of it as “clinical depression” or even pathological emotion, my emotion is already connected in to “anti-depressants” semiotically) etc. We need to stop saying “I’m depressed” or “I’m anxious” or “I’m paranoid” and open up space to conceive of our emotions and thoughts in new ways.

7/24/2012 12:18 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

make sure you talk about the great work you do and how also how 3rd world and other countries deal differently with mental illness than USA and gleen for their experiences how to improve treatment

7/20/2012 10:40 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Articulate the compelling case for a psycho-social conception of the personal and social problems that sometimes call for or demand a helping response or intervention by others, both individually and socially. Challenge the current “mental illness” conception. Note how recent advances in neuroscience, while very significant, fall far, far short of application in this context, of what is required to justify a preponderantly biomedical conception of these problems and the current, highly financially successful, market-driven, almost exclusively pharmacuetical “treatment” response to them. If rocket science had been at the comparable stage of current neuroscience when we first launched ourselves to the moon, we wouldn’t have come close to getting there! In contrast, our psychosocial knowledge, while still very limited, is, relative to the task at hand, much more advanced than neuroscience.

7/19/2012 1:33 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Definitely talk about your previous experience at Alternatives and the current paradigm shift. Would also love to hear an update on how implementing Open Dialogue in the US is going!

7/19/2012 12:02 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Cultural competency in the peer movement, as in the second wave of feminism, elitist and racist, does not exist. Two years ago I attended a Healing Ceremony at Alternatives put on by Navajo peoples from Shiprock/Four Corners I believe. They told of having sent 22 people to Peer Specialist training and having only one pass! They were so upset by this that they took the time to write their own culturally appropriate peer recovery training. WIthout comment, the powers that be (whomever administers and controls the Peer Specialist training) sent it back! Disgusting. Is the we can do is to replicate the colonialist models of our masters? What does recovery mean or look like to our elders? To our Deaf? To our multiply disabled sisters and brothers? I believe about 65% of us fit this category.

7/18/2012 2:43 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Young Adult Male suicide risks – In Oregon (2010) Male suicide rate, 20-24 years old was 22.6 per 100,000 Being male is a co-occuring disorder Community Risk and Protective factors-know your positives and negatives. Stigma Busters-Ways to Break the Mental Health Stigma

7/17/2012 11:43 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Give ’em hell, Will!

7/15/2012 7:46 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

PART OF HIS STORY… WHAT THERAPIES HE USES WHAT WORKED FOR HIM

7/15/2012 5:25 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Will say something around competency as it informs practice and not only evidence based, but emerging practices that are peer, cultural, and spiritual in nature.

7/8/2012 2:15 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

To address the cost of medication and possible strategies for reducing the cost of “necessary” medications.

7/6/2012 10:26 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

funding – how to deliver at a time of austerity

7/6/2012 4:04 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

– info that recovery is real – focus on hope

7/6/2012 5:30 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

How about pictures or video of someone when they are healthy and then after a couple of decades of medication and mental health care with the tagline ‘We can do better’ Gods speed

7/4/2012 11:11 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

That there is room in the Recovery movement for varied opinions but that at this point we need to be willing to be honest that there is no proof that mental illness has i biological basis that is truly treatable. Be bold but inclusive in your approach. We need to build bridges which is sometimes tricky.

7/4/2012 4:52 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Anyone at risk of involvement in the system presently called Health Care that is really Illness Maintenance should be aware of and constantly keep up with the biggest risks of iatrogenic adverse events. Do not take anything from big Pharma without understanding that the fine print and possible side effects are serious. Carefully log how each person, as an individual, responds.

7/3/2012 4:36 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Emphasize the fact that the Survivor movement is here to stay and we are only getting stronger. We will not back down nor go away nor will we be compliant.

7/3/2012 9:23 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Ask them for a public announcement via mainstream TV or news, that actually that whole chemical imbalance thing, was just a ‘useful metaphor’ after all…The degree of (successful) misinformation out there is terrifying, and if it was replicated in a part of real medicine, they would do something. Example, if 90% of type 2 diabetics believed their condition was caused by “evil spirits” (as promoted relentlessly on TV ads, by uh, Witch Doctors) wouldn’t Endocrinologists do something to clarify this incorrect belief? 🙂

7/2/2012 1:51 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

A clear condemnation of the potentially damaging effects of labels that are used to pathologize and stigmatize people’s experiences that includes an explanation of how those labels, themselves, often hinder the recovery process during and after challenging episodes as they serve to portray certain behaviors or experiences as a fixed part of a person’s permanent identity rather than embracing the truth of them as being part of a much more dynamic process of constant evolution and change. Thank you for doing this speech and for engaging in this radically democratic preparation process!! Please let me know if you would like to brainstorm about any of these ideas further or if you would like additional explanations of anything I wrote or information about my sources: arianewhite@yahoo.com. Warmly, Ariane

7/2/2012 12:01 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

I’m sure you’ll cover all the bases without needing more input.

7/2/2012 8:20 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Don’t just tell the Whitaker story about meds and med withdrawal. Go a step further – how can we connect as a movement? What national organization will organize and lead our 3 segments of the recovery movement: people who want to fix the system, people who want to make the system illegal, and people who want to build a new system – entrepreneurs? If all 3 sectors worked together it would be much more powerful. Also, if meds don’t work, what then? We don’t have a big, national, scalable answer which is why no one listens to us really.How do we social messaging to share the real story about emotional distress? How do we handle trauma issues of so many of our advocates so we don’t sound mean or petulant when we speak with a public voice?

7/2/2012 5:22 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Expose big pharmacy again and cost to society and taxpayers Raise issue of human rights abuse with forced drugging and hospitalization Dsm is a political and nonscience based completely subjective work that is orwellian in its quest for social control

7/1/2012 6:24 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Hi, Will! This is Amy in Colorado, SO glad you are doing this this year. I would just add that the ACA is the largest health-policy change EVER in the USA & will make the Community Services Act look like a crackerjack prize. 15 states, and Colorado is one, are opting for several early initiatives, such as integration (MH & SUD! SCAREEEE!) Everyone should be watching these 15 states and we should all be speaking with one another. No doubt we will have some spectacular fails that others may learn from. I plan on posting here & there that I want to connect these 15 states at Alt so that we can begin a dialogue. THANK YOU FOR CROWD SOURCING! You are so cool!

7/1/2012 6:08 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Mental illness does not exist, these are psycho/social problems. People in mental distress need social support, not medical intervention. There are many forms of social support but all share the same underlying ideas of being on someone’s side, trying to understand them and encouraging them to face their problems as well as providing basic stuff like housing. A proper service for people facing extreme mental distress would feed back the causes of extreme mental distress, such as child sexual assault, family violence, poverty, debt, racism and homophobia into other services at a policy level. The drug companies are more interested in profit than people. While some may say this could lead us to a critique of capitalism and solidarity with the Occupy movement and some say it is just an unfortunate accident that this is true in “mental health,” it needs to be addressed if the state is really going to help people.

7/1/2012 3:48 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

For heaven’s sake, please keep hammering the importance of safe tapering off psychiatric medications! Too many doctors are complacent or ignorant about withdrawal symptoms. People are being grievously injured needlessly. The medical literature has been far too sanguine about withdrawal symptoms. Doctors cannot distinguish mild withdrawal symptoms from severe withdrawal symptoms. All mental health agencies should put forward specific guidelines to safe tapering — such as “10% taper each month for 2 months. Increase speed of taper if no withdrawal symptoms in the first 2 months or if they last only a few days. Lower the amount of decrement (e.g. 5%) if withdrawal symptoms appear at 10% decrements in the first month or two. All withdrawal symptoms are potentially serious. Taking the more conservative route slowing the rate of reduction reduces risk to the patient’s nervous system. Some individuals may be so sensitive to dosage reductions they can tolerate only decrements of a fraction of a milligram per month or longer. Utilize tablet-splitting, liquid preparations, and compounded medications to supply customized daily dosage.”

7/1/2012 12:51 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Honestly, so much can be said, but there are so many options out there. I am mostly looking at finding ways through, and TCM is one of my strongest treatment methodologies right now. And it’s keeping me out of the hospital, along side with meditation. My GP isn’t really helping a whole lot. I’m kind of on my own.

7/1/2012 12:38 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

I hope this goes well for you. Any questions, drop me a line. David C Ross, MA LPCC dross@ashlandmhrb.org

7/1/2012 12:16 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Please remind people that suffering is not always such a bad thing. Suffering has dignity and meaning and a place in human life. No one can erradicate emotional suffering from their own or another’s life. Please promote tolerance for emotional suffering!

7/1/2012 11:33 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Thank Robert Whitaker for his hard work, talk about his website. The benefits of socially-based body movement, yoga, dance, drumming, meditation and creative expression. (all of which counter shame and the self-isolating associated with shame) Psychotherapy should be seen as a collaborative dialogue between people of equal dignity, worth and credibility. End the power relationship of diagnosis. All diagnosis is reduction and coercive (an act of authority). Diagnosis prevents dialogue. Every patient should expect to grow through mental crisis and emerge with even more capacity than they had before. No one should allow any doctor to shrink his fullest aspirations, to shrink her soul. Ultimately these crisis are spiritual. Another concern I have is about how some patients embrace the diagnosis of bipolar as an organic disease because it is associated with creativity and art. I think it’s very counter productive, and I don’t really appreciate the concept of “madness” because while promoting the romance of the artist, it actually discredits creative non-conformity as being irrational or insane.

7/1/2012 8:31 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Opposition to forced drugging and forced labeling.

7/1/2012 7:18 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Losing our ideas of what “well” necessarily looks like.

7/1/2012 6:42 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Why you fee£ it was important To take the opportunity to be the Keynote. Speaker.. What is burning inside you ~ that you want to share with the masses!

7/1/2012 6:25 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Carers by default are part of the problem, not part of the answer. We need innovations to help address this, to educate carers about recovery and how not to be manipulated by the system.

7/1/2012 6:19 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Necessary changes in mental health laws which violate human, civil, constitutional rights and liberties. How to make such changes.

7/1/2012 5:57 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Freedom. Freedom to say, “No” to the current system. Freedom to say, “Yes” to non-drug options that offer hope – http://discoverandrecover.wordpress.com/mental-health-freedom-and-recovery-act/ Duane

6/30/2012 10:15 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

himself, and his never ending and valuable insights and knowledge . . .

6/30/2012 6:04 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

“Occupy mindfulness” is a start for the conversation about “respect” in the client/survivor movement. “Occupy our behavior” engages the question of social responsibility. Will can speak for the Vision of “occupy mindfulness” and he can touch in places on how we can occupy our behavior and challenge the integrity of the “behavior management” system as it now stands. ABO “Andrew Behavior Object”

6/29/2012 7:21 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

you travel a lot – tell us what’s going on in mental health in other countries

6/29/2012 9:18 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Be as awesome as usual. I always learn something from Will, and am inspired by his willingness to think outside the box – even outside the “peer” box.

6/28/2012 6:56 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Will needs to try to embrace the multiplicity of populations who will hopefully be at Alternatives. We need to embrace one another’s diversity of philosophy, experience, recovery, priorities and visions. We have so much to learn from one another. But because of our vast diversity, we as a movement run a real risk of trying to figure out the “right” way to do recovery or the “right” way to do a peer center or whatever. In my state we have run into this and it is just sad. There is so much more that unites us than divides us. It is so critical that this is part of your message, Will, because as we begin to feel some influence and power, some of us want to claim a corner on what “integrity” means, or what “recovery” means or even what “dialogue” means and from there comes divisiveness and from there it just all falls into disarray and confusion. We’re at that particular place right now in my state and though I know it’s just a stage and it will pass, it’s discouraging for me, because I feel such a passion for the work and I just don’t have time to be fighting with my colleagues, and I know others will take advantage of our lack of unity!!! I know that this kind of thing has happened in other fledgling social movements and they have gotten through it. So maybe it’s just necessary growing pains. But it is painful. What can we learn from some of the more mature social movements who have moved beyond where we are? Maybe what I’m saying doesn’t make much sense but if you want to talk more about it, my name is Jo (female) and my number is 978-687-4288 x124 EST during normal business hours. Peace and kudos for you to reaching out to the people before such an important address!! I don’t know if I would have the courage to do so! I myself am hoping to be in OR but am still up in the air.

6/28/2012 2:06 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

appreciation that times are changing very fast, that the understandings are changing, that pharma has been deceptive, that the research has been deceptive, and that we need to regroup and that can feel frightening, untethered ….

6/28/2012 11:06 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

1) The importance of using natural approaches: naturopathic care and acupuncture; and using these first before going for heavily sedating meds that may or may not work, and often cause additional problems. 2) The most important part of getting better from emotional/mental health issues involves relationships with providers and peers that help the person feel less alone, more normal than they thought they were, and gives them hope that things can resolve in a good way. We need to fund these therapeutic relationships instead of focusing exclusively on meds as the answer. Otherwise, people who are already marginalized feel more and more lonely, have fewer resources to solve their problems, and need more and more meds to numb their pain. This is costly and ineffective, results in us losing people rather than helping them, and everyone pays a lot for lousy care for people who are vulnerable and cannot fight very well for better care. Everyone needs to experience effective relationships with people to heal. WE need to fund effective healing, and that involves effective therapy and relationship-building in general. 3) Please mention the Scandinavian model and research about early family intervention for psychosis that totally alleviates symptoms in most cases, and quickly. Then, CALCULATE THE AVERAGE FINANCIAL SAVINGS THIS WOULD NET WITH ONE SPMI CLIENT, then 10 clients, then 100 clients, then the estimated number of SPMI clients in Oregon and the overall savings! Talk money. Ultimately, this is the US, and that is all that seem to matter to our government ultimately. Make it concrete and financial. 4) Give whoever is in charge of the meeting a Whittaker book (the doctor’s book you have coming to present at your meetings often). Suggest they read it and pass it on in their circle so they read from a doctor what you are telling them once again. They say in sales it takes 3-7 times! Thanks, Will.

6/28/2012 10:37 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

emotionalCPR in every community,taught by peers to the rest of the community, literally based on using our lived experience of recovery to teach the rest of society to connect to, emPower, and revitalize their center through connecting with others vital center

6/28/2012 9:57 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Not sure at the moment, but thank you for asking for ideas.

6/28/2012 9:35 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

I saw that movie with charlton heston i can’t remember but it was where the food source was solent green and at the end they were saying it was the people or at twighligt zone where earthlings were taken to a new world and at the end some one says that book is a cook book of us. We are endanger of the chemical companies having all of us.w I would real stress us working togeather to Promote Health and Wellness and to look at our history and how we have managed to come this far without a national organization. Speak to Health Care Affordable act what is left at that time.

6/28/2012 5:04 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Opportunities to grow in the work place…and value lived experiences!

6/28/2012 12:57 AM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

His own story of recovery/liberation.

6/27/2012 8:38 PM ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–