I hear people scared of the suicidal feelings of others–I hear a lot of “leave it to the experts–that person needs to get professional help.” Suicide scares people, so I can see why they want someone else to be responsible. But what if professional help is harm?
Forced medication, hospital abuse, and losing our freedom–institutionalization is hell. Psych hospitals are mostly prisons for we who misbehave enough to feel extremes and need something different.
If we act weird, that’s where society might put us. But who comes out of a psych hospital healed? We might be sedated, but mostly it’s a place of harm, losing our bodily autonomy, and having bad things done to us without our consent.
I love to have 20 tools in my wellness toolbox, to keep me strong enough to avoid mainstream psychiatry as much as I can! Even science knows that hospitalization for mental health does more harm than good. So why are we still told to seek it?
Why: it’s big money. Emotional authenticity, to treat people as people, and to treat mental health struggles as a valid part of the human experience, is too big a risk, for many people who have power. It’s way simpler for them, to pretend people who are crazy such as myself should lose our freedom and power. It’s way simpler for people with more power to pretend that we are Other.
But we’re not Other! Anyone can have strong feelings and need some sort of help. Luckily, there are many types of help, including preventative inter-dependence and resilience-building, like the Las Vegas Radical Mental Health Collective.
The well-being of others is a collective responsibility. We can pretend experts can do it all and do it well, but that’s just not true. Suicide is a lot to face–strong emotions and destructive impulses. I’m glad there are many ways, besides locking people up. Psychiatric imprisonment could save them short term, but long term will not help.
Thank you for doing radical mental health, speaking your truth, normalizing emotions, and being who you are. Hope you have all the options you need, when you need them.