Beyond the Brain – Mad in America

A new scholarly article explores the ongoing debate surrounding the classification of mental disorders as brain disorders and proposes the field of psychological humanities as a potential way forward.

The article, co-authored by Jussi Valtonen and Bradley Lewis, argues that the classification of mental disorders as brain disorders has led to a reductionist view of mental illness that overlooks the complex social and cultural factors that contribute to mental health. Their article also highlights the importance of the psychological humanities. This field combines the humanities and social sciences with medicine and public health to provide a more comprehensive understanding of mental health.

Valtonen and Lewis argue that psychological humanities can help bridge the gap between the reductionist view of mental illness as a brain disorder and the more holistic view that considers the social and cultural factors contributing to mental health. Valtonen (a novelist and neuropsychologist) and Lewis (a psychiatrist with a Ph.D. on Foucault) use the works of Russian author Anton Chekhov to illustrate their point.

Chekhov, who was a physician as well as a writer, explored the complex relationship between mental health and social factors in his stories and plays. The authors argue that Chekhov’s work provides a valuable perspective on mental health that is often overlooked in the brain disorders debate.

“Chekhov stands out, both through his art and his dual engagement with medicine and literature, as a pluralistic advocate of both science and literature. Chekhov, who worked in a time before the methodological conflict had hardened, used an approach to mental differences in his stories that values the sciences but also exemplifies the possibilities of the arts and humanities,” Valtonen and Lewis write.

“In this way, Chekhov can be a guide for mental health research and practice at a time when biological answers are turning out to be much more complicated than early proponents of neuroimaging had hoped. Finally, generalizing from Chekhov’s contribution, we develop an arts-and-humanities approach to mental health and mental difference through the articulation of interdisciplinary mental health humanities as a significant contributor to future mental health research, education, and practice.”

Valtonen and Lewis point out that the debate over whether mental disorders can be explained purely in neurobiological terms has been raging for over a century. While some researchers have advocated for natural science methods to measure cognitive and neuroscience variables, others have argued that this approach is limited in its reach. Moreover, recent research has shown that neurobiology-based interventions for mental disorders have largely failed, leading to a call for a broader perspective.

Beyond the Brain: Psychological Humanities Needed to Understand the Human Condition

Medically Assisted Suicide is Not a Win to Metal Health

Canada has law that 12 year old mentally I’ll children can ask for assisted suicide

Medically-Assisted Suicide Is Not a Win for Mental Health

By Megan Wildhood

Disability rights advocates argue that difficulty in accessing medical assistance in dying services is unjust and oppressive, that forcing someone to stay alive against their will is abusive and devalues human life since it doesn’t respect the power of choice. Whether you agree or disagree with that, the problem is the precedent it has set: this is no longer about physical illnesses known to be degenerative and fatal; it is expanding well beyond that into the areas of mental health and even socioeconomics.

Canada’s MAID program, which has been in the spotlight lately, has drastically lowered the requirements for who can qualify for their services. The kinds of diagnoses have expanded from physical illnesses known to be terminal to “mental illnesses”—and some applicants are being accepted for MAID simply because they’re poor. The worst part is that the process has been streamlined so that the time from application to death is getting alarmingly short.

Mental Campaigns – Mad in America

An article published in New Ideas in Psychology hypothesizes that mental health awareness efforts in Western countries may be partially responsible for the rise of mental health problems those countries are experiencing. Psychologists Lucy Foulkes from the University of Oxford in the UK and Jack Andrews from the University of New South Wales in Australia wrote the article.

Foulkes and Andrews argue that the increase in mental health problems in places pushing greater mental health awareness likely involves at least two precipitating factors. First, more people with mental health problems accurately report symptoms that would have been under-reported, ignored, or dismissed if not for greater mental health awareness. Second, some people with mild forms of distress incorrectly interpret their experience as a mental health problem.

According to the authors, the latter case can lead to mental health problems that would have otherwise not existed due to the power of labeling. They write:

“First, we argue that mental health awareness efforts are leading to more accurate reporting of previously under-recognized symptoms, a beneficial outcome. Second, and more problematically, we propose that awareness efforts are leading some individuals to interpret and report milder forms of distress as mental health problems. We propose that this then leads some individuals to experience a genuine increase in symptoms because labeling distress as a mental health problem can affect an individual’s self-concept and behavior in a way that is ultimately self-fulfilling.”

Mental Health Awareness Campaigns May Actually Lead to Increases in Mental Distress

Lived Experience Missing from NAMI

What’s Missing from NAMI and Pro-Psychiatry: A Lack of Lived Experience

By Maria Mangicaro

I believe that advocates who have not experienced psychiatric treatment lack the ability to fully comprehend the suffering many consumers endure from adverse drug reactions.

This is, I think, a moral imperative. The use of all pharmaceutical products really is a “buyer-beware” situation—and since many psych patients become forced consumers, their advocates have a duty to be educated and concerned with adverse reactions.

Psychiatric Diagnosis are not reliable

Duh. My diagnosis was based on Xanax overdoses and trauma

The screening test for depression recommended by the WHO is so poor that for every 100 screened, 36 will get a false diagnosis of depression.

Mad in America – Main cause of youth mental illness

Young adults around the world are suffering from a generational deterioration in social connections with family and friends and a related, significant decline in youth mental health, according to the latest Mental State of the World Report from Sapien Labs.

Compared with their parent’s generation, young people are three times likelier to report poor relationships with their adult family and twice as likely to lack friends they can rely on in times of need – forms of social deprivation that, in turn, affect well-being. As a result, states the report:

“The risk of mental health challenges is ten times higher among those who lack close family relationships and friendships compared to those with many close family and friends.”

The newly released report, citing international online survey results from 2022, notes substantial and increasing disintegration of family bonds across the globe and describes a population “still mentally scarred” by the COVID-19 pandemic, with data showing minimal or no mental bounceback.


“While many factors such as the Internet are likely to contribute to the diminishing Social Self and bonds of family and friendship, one significant factor may also be cultural trends in parenting that trade-off warmth, love, and stability for greater focus on material comfort and accomplishments.”

Deteriorating Relationships and Family Bonds Drive Youth Mental Health Crisis