‘Experiencing mental health crises and personal critical responses’
Will Hall speaking at INTAR India 2016 Lavasa, India.
4 min – i don’t know if i identify so much with that word recovery .. what i really identify with is really a process of liberation.. because i think all of us are in a process of liberation..
what was really important for me in my own liberation process was an ongoing struggle with what could really be understood as a de colonization of my mind from psychiatry
5 min – when i was in the hospital.. i was really implanted with a lot of beliefs/frameworks/scientific-understandings.. that really came from a position of power not from truth.. and it was really a colonization of my own psyche.. and so i’ve been going thru a de colonization process
sounds like all the institutions.. ie: school.. science of people ness
huge – supposed to’s.. killing us
recent interview on mad in america. . about the connections between transforming the mental health system and struggling with the legacies of colonialism and *oppression.. because i believe that
each of us is learning how to find our authentic voice
to not be dependent on the systems of oppression/power/privilege that have controlled/influenced us.. but really to find our authentic truth
6 min – to find permission to speak authentically as human beings.. free of fear/oppression..
7 min – this legacy to see human *difference as normal.. that no human being is other..no human being is less than
all systems of oppression are based on the idea that there’s a normative standard..
of math and men.. our craze/oppression of measuring things.. of thinking we can exchange/compare ..value.. leading us to not be us..as we perpetuate not-us ness.. via broken feedback loop/assumptions/supposed to’s based on what we’ve boxed ourselves into..
imagining.. a mech simple enough.. to listen to all of us.. everyday.. as the day..
no partial listening..
no people (land.. animals.. et al) on hold..
that when you’re disabled.. you’re broken.. not quite as fully normal..
i really believe that what we’re here about is to ..
overcome that other\ing that happens
overcome those systems of oppression.. that one person is fully human and another person isn’t
8 min – all of those systems of oppression.. have always been based on a kind of false science.. false/pseudo-scientific claims of biological superiority of one group over another.. that rationalize and give legitimacy to systems of oppression..
science of people ness
turns out.. all experiences that are called psychotic.. are normal expressions of human diversity..
9 min – my mother was part of choctaw tribe.. when i was in hospital.. hearing voices considered abnormal.. but in my mother’s culture.. if you don’t hear voices.. that’s considered abnormal
so transcultural perspective.. turns out all the experiences.. we call psychotic.. are actually normal human expressions that can be induced experimentally if you control the environment..
begs we experiment with rat park.. for the well being of all of us..
11 min – (joke) offering workshop to teach you how to hear voices.. 128 hours long.. can’t leave.. can’t sleep.. i guarantee you’ll hear voices
exaggerated startle response.. found by scientists in (and to reinforce abnormality ness of) schizophrenics.. turns out.. can be induced.. by ie: maternal neglect.. isolation..
so all the things we call psychotic differences.. are actually expressions of adaptation.. of responses to environment
12 min – if you put a person in the right circumstance.. (depravation) .. you will generate these psychotic experiences… so..
what does that say to us..
that the things we call mental-illness/psychosis/craziness/insanity.. are actually normal expressions of being human.. all of us have that potential w/in us..
what i believe we’re working on.. is not to promote some normal standard.. not about making people be normal.. but helping them overcome their isolation and their powerless ness…
not trying to be normal by some oppressive normal standard..
not normal ness
“What I would love to see is a bunch of programs in a bunch of areas responding to community needs, and we could all come together in some way and figure out what the best pathway forward is.”
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/scottsgonetopot/status/1448954114184974337
“We’re not able to face the fact that mental health care is very violent, and very harmful, and we have to start creating options,” says Will Hall, .. t.. a counselor and mental health advocate based in Oakland, CA. “And one of the most extreme examples is the police response to mental health crisis.”
from doe at lse:
d: so why sometimes does violence have large effects on society and when not: when they get mixed up w systems of care..t
d: bloch: where extraordinary violence part of performance and actually performance e is to care for someone.. (ie: funeral ritual).. as david said.. stop being play kinds and become real sovereignty.. and how violence in care leads to loss of social freedoms.. t
Now, he says, “I feel like we have an incredible opportunity, because of the leadership of the Black Lives Matter movement, to make change.”
currently working toward his PhD in Psychiatric Epidemiology at Maastricht University in the Netherlands, Hall has focused his research on antipsychotic drug withdrawal. He has conducted a survey of about 4,000 people who have successfully come off antipsychotics, and is now performing statistical analysis of that data. Hall believes, however, that the experience that most qualifies him to support the people with whom he works is his experience as a psychiatric patient. At 26 years old, after several years of having what he describes as a manic reaction to the Prozac he had been taking, he went to seek help from a walk-in clinic in San Francisco, where he was told he was a danger to himself and involuntarily hospitalized in a public psychiatric ward. During his year-long stay there, he spent two-and-a-half months in a locked unit, was pressured to take psychiatric drugs without real consent, and was put in restraints and isolation cells.
When he came out of the hospital, he says, he believed everything that had happened to him was justified and in his best interest, until he began to do his own research.
“There’s a huge need, for people who are looking for something different than what the psychiatric system is offering them,” says Hall. “A lot of people encounter violence. They encounter terrible, toxic side effects and they’re told there are no alternatives to the medications. They encounter a lack of awareness of trauma, and a lot of people who aren’t interested in listening very deeply. And so often, people come to me because they have a different understanding of what their needs are, and they want a different kind of response.”
Through his organization Compassion Not Cops, Hall campaigns for an end to the practice of sending police to check on people experiencing a mental health crisis, such as those who have expressed suicidal feelings. “I frequently counsel people to be very careful about who they tell that they have suicidal feelings, because literally, there could be a knock on your door,” he says.
The George Floyd rebellion has shone a light on many cases that did not receive much media attention when they took place, of people who have been shot by police summoned to perform wellness checks, and the fact that most of the people killed in these cases are Black.
Hall says he works with a lot of families who are terrified of the police. “I literally have to coach families to protect their children from getting killed by the police.”
“One of the most devastating impacts of the way we respond to a mental health crisis,” he says, “is that people learn not to talk about their suicidal feelings so they don’t get locked up, and they go into hiding. It’s harder to reach people after that.”
even locked up by now being overly observed by others..
“The situation is so bad that sending anyone other than the police would be an improvement,” Hall says. He goes on to say, however, that clinicians often do not have anything in their toolkit other than hospitalizations and drugs. The most crucial things peers have to offer, Hall believes, are connection and being listened to, which makes them better equipped to help the person de-escalate and start to think about how to put their lives together. “If we can send people who can connect with the person, we could create a listening environment, and safety.”
deeper.. what we need is a means to undo our hierarchical listening in the first place
What I would love to see is that there are a bunch of programs in a bunch of areas responding to *community needs, and we could all come together in some way and figure out what the best pathway forward is.” – morgan
deeper problem.. we have no idea what our legit needs.. so we keep org-ing around non legit needs..t
“What we believe is that we need to be able to meet the needs of our community with the resources appropriate for them,” she says.
even deeper.. need to org around legit needs
Morgan, the CAHOOTS Program Coordinator. “What if we look at a proactive society that takes care of itself and its community members before they’re in a crisis? Rather than responding to people once they’re in a crisis, what if we put the money on the front end, and helped people be housed and as healthy as they can be, so that they’re not having those immediate crises? The harm starts so much earlier than when any first responder shows up at your door.”
ie: a nother way
Hall agrees that our society needs to focus on preventing trauma in the first place, rather than just treating it. “It’s about changing the political, economic and social realities,” he says. “Healthy communities are what create mental health.” The way to create such an environment, he believes, is by providing for basic needs *such as universal healthcare, a living wage, strong unions, support for families and support for migrants..t The fact that there are more suicides when unemployment rates go up, he argues, is one way in which people who have a mental health crisis signal what has gone wrong in a society. **“Instead of seeing them as the weak ones, and treating them with pills and diagnoses, we could see it as a sign that we need to address the whole problem in society.”
hari rat park law et al
Counselor, teacher, writer, and community development worker; PhD candidate at Maastricht University. New book! http://www.outsidementalhealth.com
hari rat park law via ..
Will’s free download of outside mental health
Will Hall (@willhall) tweeted at 4:55 AM – 9 Nov 2017 :
Early antidote to holiday spending? Free download of Outside Mental Health: Voices and Visions of Madness book by @willhall, with 60+ interviews! https://t.co/26i2VcfdnWhttps://t.co/LYe9KeeNEU (http://twitter.com/willhall/status/928591987456004096?s=17)
holy cow.. what a read
15 min video from nov 2017
INTERVOICE (@VoicesUnLtd) tweeted at 6:05 AM – 24 Nov 2017 :
Psychosis And Normality https://t.co/1KC5mnXjxN (http://twitter.com/VoicesUnLtd/status/934045231024164864?s=17)
i think that the wall between the normal people and the crazy people is an artificial one..
1 min – when some individual exhibits an extreme state of consciousness in a more pronounced/prolonged/expressive way.. it really is about the social context/history of that person and what they’ve been thru that accounts for that experience.. it’s not some malfunction or difficulty that resides exclusively inside the individual.. because i think fundamentally we can’t actually demo that there are individuals.. i think that we’re fundamentally social creatures
2 min – i think the validity of diagnosis itself is very much in question.. it wasn’t until the 1980s that the american pych assoc included ho
4 min – actually what we call psychosis is normal.. what we call a psychology of going mad.. should be seen as a normal human expression of difference/diversity
6 min – the suffering that people get into is from the social/internal response (not from the difference).. so instead of judging.. we should as how are they suffering..
7 min – ie: hearing voices.. only problem if adds to isolation and disempowerment
9 min – so really the line we need to draw is around empowerment and isolation
13 min – we need to start thinking of psychosis as an adaptation.. a response.. to a double bind..