Original SDMB thread - Manic-depressive vs. Bipolar -- why?


The psychiatric profession's inability to isolate and define its terms, combined with the large gap between the efficacy of available treatments and the efficacy that they'd like to claim for themselves has led on more than one occasion to New Name Syndrome.

Certainly, among those diagnosed as manic dep or bipolar are people who are very glad to have the medications that are available, and there are even a few who will praise the electroshock machine for saving their lives.

Quite aside from these, politically and morally, are those (diagnosed or not) that other people would be very glad to see medicated, whether "for their own good" or because "they're driving me crazy", or a combo of the two.

Not everyone in the latter category objects to their mental and emotional state, volatile though it may be; and even among those who do are many who have tried the available treatments and prefer the condition to the therapy.

The author Kate Millett, for example, does not regard herself as having a "disease", and is among those of us who are not comfortable with statements like "they are not bad people, they are sick and they need your enlightened attitude and they need their meds".

In my case, a later diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenic sort of tended to overshadow the manic dep (attitudes towards schizzies are usually even more extreme), but my attitude towards the mental health system never changed. Personally, I strongly prefer terms like "nuts", "crazy", or "lunatic" to terms like "mental illness", "decompensated", or "disorder", because the latter terms imply a state of scientific understanding and possible treatment that the psychiatric profession does not in fact possess.

Be that as it may, to those of you who happily make use of lithium carbonate, MAO inhibitors, or whatever and who prefer to be viewed as having a treatable condition rather than as a looney, no offense intended and my best to you.

(As long as you support my right to remain untreated for each and any condition that the psychiatric profession may deem me to have).

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