By Jeffrey Craig

Once, for a brief time, there was an outrage over child drugging, in particular the use of child protective services and the schools in forcing or coercing this drugging on children.

I remember reading the horror story of Vincent Booth, who was taken away from his mother in the early 2000s when she refused to drug him with the Ritalin the school demanded he take for his “ADHD.” Vincent’s mother, Diane, tried to use the Americans with Disabilities Act to force his school to make accommodations, but had to kidnap her child from a psychiatric clinic after…


by Yaakov Ophir, PhD & Yaffa Shir-Raz, PhD

“The numbers make it look like an epidemic. Well, it’s not. It’s preposterous. This is a concoction to justify the giving out of medication at unprecedented and unjustifiable levels.” ( New York Times, Dec. 14, 2013). This penetrating declaration was not said about the coronavirus pandemic. It was said about the soaring prevalence of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) by none other than the “father of ADHD,” the famous American psychologist Keith Conners.

Soon after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (the CDC) published its 2012 estimate-according to which 11% of children…


By Sinead Gallagher

Q: “ This medication is making me feel really weird, Doctor, a bit vague, plus I have an insatiable hunger. How long will I need to stay on them?”

A: “You’ll have to stay on them for the rest of your life.

This was my psychiatrist’s categorical response back in early 2010. I’ll never forget the intensity of the sinking feeling I had when he said it. …


By Linda Comac

After years of battling depression, anxiety, and chronic pain, my younger son, Alan Ross Jacobs, died on January 10, 2015. Three months later, I attempted suicide by overdosing on pills and alcohol in the hope that I could be with Alan again. As a result of my failed suicide attempt, New York State incarcerated me in a mental institution. For 21 days, I was confined in an environment that was degrading, stultifying, and downright depressing.

Rather than alleviating depression, the physical environment in the geriatric ward where I was confined actually added to my despair. All the…


BlackLivesMatter

By Samantha Lilly

Suicide attempts made by Black youth rose by 73% from 1991 to 2017.

The Congressional Black Caucus Emergency Task Force On Black Youth Suicide and Mental Health recently published a comprehensive report designed to not only educate but to sound the alarm on Black suicidality. Attempting to push back on the trite belief that Black youth simply “do not kill themselves,” this group of Black scientists, Black mental health care practitioners, Black organizers, and Black activists are working to bring Black youth suicide into focus during conversations concerning mental health care in the United States. …


By Jon Sedarati, MSc

Canadian psychologist and professor Jordan B. Peterson rose to fame in late 2016 for his opposition to bill C-16, a proposed bill ( now passed) purportedly designed to protect “gender identity” and “gender expression.” Since then, Peterson has gone on to amass a YouTube following of over 2.5 million subscribers, create a Patreon account earning tens of thousands of dollars per month ( before deleting it last year), and publish his multi-million-copy bestseller, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos. …


By Magdalene Sylvaire, BA/LLB, LLM, MA

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted life around our world, doubts about psychiatry’s future exposed its professional identity crisis, which was apparently self-inflicted by its “troubling search for a biology of mental illness.” Other research shows that adverse childhood experiences (emotional-mental, physical, sexual, and financial abuse by a child’s parents or caregivers) cause long-term negative physical and psychological outcomes in adulthood. These non-medical causes of our distress support the views of trauma-recovery psychiatrists like John Briere, Ph.D., who is said to have remarked,

“If Complex PTSD were ever given its due- that is, if…


By Enrico Gnaulati, Ph.D.

The way we conduct our emotional lives and relate to one another as partners and family members has a bearing on the health or ill-health of our immune systems. Just like viruses, emotions are contagious. Partners “catch” each other’s stress and there are adverse health implications. The good news is that partners also “catch” each other’s happiness. Cooped up at home to protect against the transmission of COVID-19, shared humor and goodwill gestures will not only help avert the outbreak of a parallel pandemic-more strife in family life-but also keep our immune systems well-toned.

Under normal…


Changing the Mental Health Paradigm in Our Schools

By Rev. Dr. Steven Epperson

Readers of Mad in America recognize that the dominant “mental health” paradigm and the biomedical and carceral regimes that deliver it have largely failed to understand, address, and improve the lives of millions of people experiencing emotional and mental distress. A group of us in Vancouver, Canada, has been actively working to change that paradigm for nearly 10 years. We know that we have had an impact, and yet we also have also learned how difficult it may be to change the larger discussion in our society.

One of our principal concerns has been the…


By Maria Mangicaro

“The Benzo Crisis,” which aired on the October 6, 2019, edition of CNN’s This Is Life With Lisa Ling, seemed like the perfect source of information to bring along to yet another family meeting advocating on behalf of a family member caught up in what is best described as the U.S. mental hell-care system. As a bonus, Ling’s husband, Dr. Paul Y. Song, wrote an excellent companion article from a prescriber’s perspective after learning about the gross misuse of benzodiazepine drugs via his father-in-law’s personal experience.

A quick trip to the public library before they closed allowed…

Mad in the Family

Information and resources for parents who wish to explore alternatives to conventional, drug-based psychiatric care for children and youth.

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