New Events


no events posted in last week

Blog Feeds



offsite link US “Arms Control Envoy” Pressures So... Wed Sep 30, 2020 17:09 | Park Chan-Kyong

offsite link Azerbaijan Celebrated 1988 Earthquake Th... Wed Sep 30, 2020 15:46 | Aleksandr Lebed

offsite link US Military Patch Depicts Drone and Skul... Wed Sep 30, 2020 14:44 | Kristin Huang

offsite link We Are Living Under COVID Sharia Wed Sep 30, 2020 12:31 | Spiked

offsite link After It No Longer Matters the NYT Admit... Wed Sep 30, 2020 11:41 | Thomas Erdbrink

Anti-Empire >>

The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link Mission Impossible? Wed Sep 30, 2020 18:48 | amarynth
By Francis Lee for the Saker Blog The present economic/political crises is not amenable to solutions which might have been effective in the past. We seem to be fighting today?s

offsite link Moveable Feast Cafe 2020/09/30 ? Open Thread Wed Sep 30, 2020 14:30 | Herb Swanson
2020/09/30 13:30:03Welcome to the ‘Moveable Feast Cafe’. The ‘Moveable Feast’ is an open thread where readers can post wide ranging observations, articles, rants, off topic and have animate discussions of

offsite link Weekly China Newsbrief and Sitrep Wed Sep 30, 2020 14:03 | amarynth
By Godfree Roberts selected from his extensive weekly newsletter : Here Comes China Editorial Comments Before we dive into Godfree’s newsletter for this week, those that are interested in space,

offsite link Azerbaijani-Armenian War: Turkish F-16s Enter The Game. Armenia Threatens To Use Iskander Missiles Tue Sep 29, 2020 21:34 | amarynth
South Front The Armenian-Azerbaijani war continues raging in the South Caucasus. As of September 29, the Azerbaijani advance in the Nagorno-Karabakh region struck the Armenian defense and Azerbaijani forces were

offsite link China deploys Sun Tzu to prevail in the Chip War Tue Sep 29, 2020 18:26 | amarynth
by Pepe Escobar with permission – first posted at Asia Times Let?s cut to the chase: with or without a sanction juggernaut, China simply won?t be expelled from the global

The Saker >>

Public Inquiry
Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005

offsite link Sarah McInerney and political impartiality

offsite link Did RTE journalists collude against Sinn Fein? Anthony

offsite link Irish Examiner bias Anthony

offsite link RTE: Propaganda ambush of Sinn Fein Anthony

offsite link Hong Kong and democracy Anthony

Public Inquiry >>

Human Rights in Ireland
A Blog About Human Rights

offsite link Right to Water Mon Aug 03, 2020 19:13 | Human Rights

offsite link Human Rights Fri Mar 20, 2020 16:33 | Human Rights

offsite link Turkish President Calls On Greece To Comply With Human Rights on Syrian Refugee Issues Wed Mar 04, 2020 17:58 | Human Rights

offsite link US Holds China To Account For Human Rights Violations Sun Oct 13, 2019 19:12 | Human Rights

offsite link UN Human Rights Council Should Address Human Rights Crisis in Cambodia Sat Aug 31, 2019 13:41 | Human Rights

Human Rights in Ireland >>


category national | health / disability issues | opinion/analysis author Friday June 09, 2006 11:22author by Sean Crudden - imperoauthor email sean at impero dot iol dot ieauthor address Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co phone 087 9739945 Report this post to the editors

Stigma and Isolation

Mental illness and the treatment of mental illness have become conflated in the minds of lay people and professional alike. It is an astute practitioner who can distinguish the effects of treatment from the effects of illness when they look at a mental patient. In my humble opinion standard treatment contributes more to stigma and isolation of the mental patient than any underlying illness he or she may suffer from.
Sean Crudden
Sean Crudden

In the "On the Couch" feature (a regular feature) in last Tuesday’s Irish Times Dr John Owens was asked the stock question:

"What is your greatest fear?"

His reply was:

"Being really honest, it’s the psychiatrist’s couch."

As well as being an honest man Dr Owens is himself a consultant psychiatrist and chairperson of The Mental Health Commission.

Those of us who have been at the tender mercies of the mental health system - some longer than others - have truly gotten more than we bargained for at the beginning. There can be no dispute that the standard treatment for mental illness is disabling and disfiguring. This whole mirage of "recovery" which is being touted about at the moment is misleading for the only possibility of recovery within the present system is a spurious kind of recovery buttressed up by medical treatment and close supervision.

Recent research has shown a lot of goodwill towards the area of "mental health" but there is within public opinion a stubborn large remnant of fear suspicion and hatred of mental patients. A recent cross-border conference in Monaghan dealt with the theme "Stigma …. Myths and Mindset" and the overriding message coming out of the conference is that stigma is a mistake - a persistent and wrong-headed part of public opinion that can be corrected by astute public relations campaigns and advertising. The answer arising out of the conference is a "Madison Avenue" one and it is not based on any genuine consideration of why stigma exists and how far, in fact, it may be authentic.

The Young Progressive Democrats, Ógra Sinn Fein, and others have become involved in campaigns around suicide prevention, youth mental health and the area of mental health in general. I am not sure where any of them are coming from but I do not wish to patronise them or to suggest that their collective approach is disingenuous in any way. However they are naively buying into the latest deliberate selling campaign which is designed to classify psychiatry as everyone’s friend and saviour and to lead more and more gullible people into a system which, far from being perfect, can actually be dangerous. For example, it is a well-known fact that people who have been discharged from mental hospital are at a greatly increased risk of suicide in the days immediately following their discharge.

Related Link:
author by Depressed but happy due to Efexorpublication date Fri Jun 09, 2006 17:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

" For example, it is a well-known fact that people who have been discharged from mental hospital are at a greatly increased risk of suicide in the days immediately following their discharge. "

What is your point? That they should be kept in permanently?

Sean, you hate psychiatrists and the Irish Mental Health System. I am prepared to accept that you got a raw deal but that does not mean that all psychiatrists are evil. For the vast majority of psychiatric patients psychiatric care works. Isnt that something worth keeping?

Why do you want to drag everything down? Just accept that for some people medication works. Dont rage against them, dont try and prevent them getting help. Thats not going to solve your problems. But there are many people out there who would commit suicide if it wasnt for their medication.

When you have studied medicene for 12 years I'll consider you qualified to give advice on my problems. In the meantime, analyse yourself.

author by hedgehogpublication date Fri Jun 09, 2006 21:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

One of the problems with the health system regarding people suffering from depression and other related problems is that there are lots of vested interests making lots of cash out of antidepressants such as effexor (venlafaxine)(made by wyeth) , prozac(fluoxetine) (made by eli lilly) and paxil (made by good old GSK!)

These meds are widely perscribed in Ireland at the drop of a hat. They are even being marketed to address minor problems with children.

Research has been suppressed, university positions have been denied to unco-operative physicians who speak out against the pharmaceutical industries activities. make no mistake, our modern misery is big business.

There is increased risk of suicide linked with taking SSRI meds. I would advise all potential takers of antidepressants to make good use of the internet and become well informed before resorting to taking such meds.

common sense says that its all very well if you target a chemical to exactly the part of the brain where there seems to be a specific problem (assuming of course you fully understand the mechanism in the first place!!) but swallowing a pill whose contents slosh around YOUR WHOLE BRAIN will inevitably cause other unwanted or unpredicted effects in other parts of the brain you never meant to target.

For a more professional opinion (from someone who has more than 12 years of medical education !!!) on the realities of antidepressants and the related behaviour of big pharmaceutical companies I suggest you Google "dr david healy"

and by the way, the fact that someone is aligned to an educational institution for a certain length of time is no guarantee that they will provide good unbiased information. Large companies frequently recruit such people into the fold with promises of lucrative posts and research grants. Academic corporate Shills are well known animals in the fields (sic) of GM and nuclear energy and unsurprisingly, the pharmaceutical industries

here are a few random related links :,4273,435126....html

author by Sean Cruddenpublication date Sat Jun 10, 2006 12:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Dear Depressed but Happy

It may seem that I am giving advice but if I am it is not my intention. If you need advice I am certain that you have your own sources which you feel confident about. I follow professional advice myself. However there is no need to be censorious or angry when I try to discuss the mental health system and stigma in particular. Even a cursory glance through the web-sites whose links are given in the second comment to my article show that I am not alone in my scepticism. However I hope no-one is going to get alarmed or do anything sudden. I don't think any of us is going to drop dead right away.

The link I am giving with this comment is to an award-winning site dealing with the question of stigma - in the conventional way. It is a useful site to try to get to understand what establishment thinking is today on the topic of stigma.

Related Link:
© 2001-2020 Independent Media Centre Ireland. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Independent Media Centre Ireland. Disclaimer | Privacy