This week we talk to journalist and author Robert Whitaker. For many, Robert needs no introduction as he is well known for his award-winning book, Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America, which was released in 2010. Anatomy of an Epidemic is arguably the definitive account of the realities of psychiatric drugs and completely lays bare the astonishing rise in mental ill health despite the availability of psychiatric drugs.
I feel that we need to decouple legitimate critical views of medical treatment or therapy from the propensity to feel shame and guilt about that treatment. Medical science makes progress precisely by being self-critical and self-analytical, not by accepting blind faith and rejecting all criticism. Most new and novel treatments or therapies have arisen because of dissatisfaction with previous methods of treatment. If we stop questioning ourselves in health and well-being we will not progress and part of that questioning needs to be by people who experience difficulty, not just by those who benefit.
This week, Megan talks about her experience with anxiety and insomnia and how that led to her being prescribed an antidepressant. She also talks about her two failed attempts to withdraw and how that meant she approached her tapering more carefully to ensure that she could minimise the withdrawal effects.
This week we interview Doctor Joanna Moncrieff. Dr. Moncrieff is a psychiatrist, academic and author. She has an interest in the history, philosophy and politics of psychiatry, and particularly in the use, misuse and misrepresentation of psychiatric drugs. She is one of the founding members and the co-chairperson the Critical Psychiatry Network.
This week we interview Simone who talks about her experiences of postnatal depression, fibromyalgia and her treatment with antidepressants. Simone describes how nutrition played a huge part in her recovery and how she now supports others with their health and wellbeing.
This week we interview Marion Brown. Marion is a Psychotherapist who works with the Human Givens approach to supporting people in emotional or psychological distress. Through her work, Marion has become increasingly concerned about the effects of psychotropic medications on patients and on their ability to engage with therapy.
This week we interview Gemma who talks about her experiences with both antidepressants and benzodiazepines and in particular the difficulties that parents of children with special needs encounter when they seek treatment for emotional or psychological distress.
This week we interview Dr. Gary Sidley. Dr. Sidley worked within NHS mental health services for 33 years in a variety of nursing, psychological and managerial roles. In the 1980s he was employed as a psychiatric nurse at a large asylum in Manchester, commencing his clinical psychology training in 1987. Subsequently, he worked as a clinical psychologist in community mental health services, inpatient units and GP practices, as well as with Senior Management positions.
This week we talk to Meghann from the USA. Meghann describes starting antidepressant drugs for OCD at the age of 9, how she came to consider her withdrawal after 17 years and how she feels now, 2 years after finishing with the drugs.
This week we interview David who has taken antidepressant drugs on and off over the last few years. David talks about his experiences of the mental healthcare system, how he has been supported by his medications and how and why he went about stopping his drugs.