We believe it is not. All our experience using Re-evaluation Counseling with former and current “mental patients” has shown that they discharge and re-evaluate like everyone else. Further, the phenomena that lead to diagnoses of “mental illness” can’t be seen under a microscope or identified by a blood test. The genetic theory of “mental illness” is scientifically unproven, even though it is a main justification for the use of psychiatric drugs.
Mental Health Liberation
Psychiatric drugs don’t cure anything, and they can create lots of damage, physical and emotional. For example, various psychiatric drugs can cause lethargy, weight gain, brain damage, and tardive dyskinesia (an irreversible disease affecting control of movement), to name a few things. Additionally, these drugs inhibit discharge and re-evaluation.
In the “mental health” system, “mental health” professionals diagnose their “patients” as having one or more of a list of recognized “mental illnesses.” We believe, by contrast, that each individual’s struggles are defined by their life experiences and cannot be categorized without devaluing the uniqueness of that individual’s situation. Using a diagnosis keeps the “mental health” worker from considering information unique to that individual that does not fit with the diagnosis and therefore limits their ability to understand and assist a client.
“Mental health” liberation means freeing our minds from believing in the concepts of “mental illness” and “mental health.” It means knowing that any struggles that we have are rooted not in an “illness” or “genetic disorder,” but in distress patterns that result from hurts we have experienced but have not yet had the opportunity to discharge.
We accept no limits to human functioning, no definition of “normal” or “good mental health.” We have reason to think that humanity’s best functioning adults have achieved only a part of the potential inherent in every newly conceived human. We assume that people do malfunction in various ways, and that some people function better overall than others, but the overall functioning of even those who function best would improve if their distresses were eliminated.
We do not think that some people are “mentally ill” and others are not. Our understanding is that all people in our society accumulate hurts that affect how we live our lives and interact with others. Some people are diagnosed as “mentally ill” because their hurts cause them to exhibit behaviors that their society deems to be unacceptable. In our experience, anyone who is listened to well and supported to discharge the hurtful experiences from their past will be able to change any behaviors they decide to change.