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By Daniel Mackler In June of 2012, twenty-three people came together to discuss the subject of coming off psychiatric drugs. We were psychiatric survivors, therapists, mental health consumers, family members, and activists, united by a passion for truth-telling. More than half of us had successfully come off psych drugs, including cocktails of antipsychotics and mood stabilizers. What resulted from our three-day gathering was an unforgettable meeting of the minds. This 75-minute documentary (directed by Daniel Mackler) offers a rare glimpse into the world of coming off psych drugs through the eyes of those who have done it. The film presents, among others, Will Hall, author of the world-renowned “Harm Reduction Guide to Coming Off Psychiatric Drugs,” Oryx Cohen, director at the National Empowerment Center, Laura Delano, blogger at www.madinamerica.com, and Daniel Hazen, noted psychiatric survivor and human rights activist. Although this documentary is not medical advice, it intends to offer something even better: hope. In a world where increasing numbers of people are put on psychiatric drugs every day, where more than 20 percent of Americans already take them, and where so many are told they need to stay on them for life, COMING OFF PSYCH DRUGS offers proof that another way is possible.
By Katherine Sharpe
A compelling and troubling exploration of a generation raised on antidepressants, and a book that combines expansive interviews with substantive research-based reporting, Coming of Age on Zoloft is a vitally important and immediately engrossing study of one of Americans most pressing and omnipresent issues: our growing reliance on prescription drugs. Katherine Sharpe, the former editor of Seed magazines ScienceBlogs.com, addresses the questions that millions of young men and women are struggling with. Where does my personality end and my prescription begin? Do I have a disease? Can I get better on my own? Combining stout scientific acumen with first-person experience gained through her own struggle with antidepressants, Sharpe leads the reader through a complex subject, a guide towards a clearer future for all.
Electronic version available By Patricia Deegan, PhD
"How does one work with people who are unmotivated"This curriculum, organized into eight modules, will help consumer/survivors/ex-patients, staff, families and friends to provide more effective support and compassionate understanding for those diagnosed with mental illness who appear unmotivated. Roy Starks, Director of Rehabilitation Services at Mental Health Corp. of Denver, Inc. wrote: "Both staff and members found the training materials invaluable. I have worked in the field of Psychiatric Rehabilitation for thirty years and found this training tape to be the most helpful I have ever seen...I recommend this training to anyone working in mental health." Staff of the University of Kansas School of Social Welfare comments:
- "Pat is a powerful myth-buster!"
- "These tapes really challenge and overturn conventional ways of thinking about 'unmotivated' or 'low-functioning' consumers."
- "Pat makes it so clear that their are no cookie cutter approaches, and her emphasis on relationship is so important."
- "These training materials will really be useful in working with staff who are resistant to the role changes that are needed to move the system toward a recovery orientation."
- "There is so much authenticity in this material. It is a grounded and thoughtful presentation of the life experience of real people."
By Dorothy Dundas Dorothy Dundas, a survivor of forced combined insulin coma/electroshock, psychiatric drugging, seclusion and restraint during her teenage years, has created this powerful poster from her actual hospital records
By Robert WhitakerThe timing of Robert Whitaker's Anatomy of an Epidemic, a comprehensive and highly readable history of psychiatry in the United States, couldn't be better. Salon.com Anatomy of an Epidemic offers some answers, charting controversial ground with mystery-novel pacing. TIME.com Lucid, pointed and important, Anatomy of an Epidemic should be required reading for anyone considering extended use of psychiatric medicine. Whitaker is at the height of his powers. Greg Critser, author of Generation Rx Why are so many more people disabled by mental illness than ever before? Why are those so diagnosed dying 10-25 years earlier than others? In Anatomy of an Epidemic investigative reporter Robert Whitaker cuts through flawed science, greed and outright lies to reveal that the drugs hailed as the cure for mental disorders instead worsen them over the long term. But Whitaker's investigation also offers hope for the future: solid science backs nature's way of healing our mental ills through time and human relationships. Whitaker tenderly interviews children and adults who bear witness to the ravages of mental illness, and testify to their newly found aliveness when freed from the prison of mind-numbing drugs. Daniel Dorman, M.D., Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, UCLA School of Medicine and author of Dante's Cure: A Journey Out of Madness This is the most alarming book I've read in years. The approach is neither polemical nor ideologically slanted. Relying on medical evidence and historical documentation, Whitaker builds his case like a prosecuting attorney. Carl Elliott, M.D., Ph.D., Professor, Center for Bioethics, University of Minnesota and author of Better than Well: American Medicine Meets the American Dream Anatomy of an Epidemic investigates a profoundly troubling question: do psychiatric medications increase the likelihood that people taking them, far from being helped, are more likely to become chronically ill? In making a compelling case that our current psychotropic drugs are causing as much if not more harm than good, Robert Whitaker reviews the scientific literature thoroughly, demonstrating how much of the evidence is on his side. There is nothing unorthodox here this case is solid and evidence-backed. If psychiatry wants to retain its credibility with the public, it will now have to engage with the scientific argument at the core of this cogently and elegantly written book. David Healy, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry, Cardiff University and author of The Antidepressant Era and Let Them Eat Prozac Anatomy of an Epidemic is a splendidly informed, wonderfully readable corrective to the conventional wisdom about the biological bases and biological cures for mental illness. This is itself a wise and necessary book essential reading for all those who have experienced, or care for those who have experienced, mental illness which means all of us! Robert Whitaker is a reliable, sensible, and persuasive, guide to the paradoxes and complexities of what we know about mental illness, and what we might be able to do to lessen the suffering it brings. Jay Neugeboren, author of Imagining Robert andTransforming Madness Every so often a book comes along that exposes a vast deceit. Robert Whitaker has written that sort of book. Drawing on a prodigious quantity of psychiatric literature as well as heart-rending stories of individual patients, he exposes a deeply disturbing fraud perpetrated by the drug industry and much of modern psychiatry at horrendous human and financial cost to patients, their families, and society as a whole. Scrupulously reported and written in compelling but unemotional style, this book shreds the myth woven around todays psychiatric drugs. Nils Bruzelius, former science editor for the Boston Globe and the Washington Post A devastating critique. . . . One day, we will look back at the way we think about and treat mental illness and wonder if we were all mad. Anatomy of an Epidemic should be required reading for both patients and physicians. Shannon Brownlee, senior research fellow, New America Foundation and author of Overtreated
By National Empowerment Center
A Public Health Education ProgramThis DVD uses a combination of discussion and scenarios taken from real life to illustrate the values and practice of Emotional CPR (eCPR), an exciting and innovative public health education program designed to teach people how to support others through emotional crisis/distress and into recovery.
By Daniel Mackler and Matt Morrissey
Dealing with Your Family After You've Been Diagnosed with a Psychiatric DisorderFamily conflict can wreak havoc on people diagnosed with psychiatric disorders. A Way Out of Madness offers guidance in resolving family conflict and taking control of your life. The book also includes personal accounts of family healing by people who were themselves psychiatrically diagnosed. Contributors include: Patch Adams, M.D., inspiration for Robin Williams film; Joanne Greenberg, author, I Never Promised You a Rose Garden; David Oaks, director, MindFreedom International; Will Hall, co-founder, Freedom Center.
- Click here to read a review of the book
- Sample chapter by Dorothy W. Dundas - Attachments Lost and Found (PDF, 25KB, 9 pages)
- Sample chapter by Will Hall - Life After Family
Available only electronically
By Daniel Fisher, MD, PhDThe question most often asked of Dan is: "How did you recover?" This electronic booklet includes Dan's personal experience from seclusion to empowerment, and the healing strategies he found helpful. Learn about the values Dan lives by, the strategies he found helpful in healing his "mental illness", and how to connect and harmonize with others.