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Ageism In Psychiatry
Ageism in Psychiatry There’s an age bias, an inherent ageism in psych labeling and its twin brother psych drugging in part because they became commonplace about 20 years ago when all kinds of previously “normal” people having average suffering and pain in reactions to a bad world or hard life were suddenly drugged for brain diseases that had never been discovered. The trouble was everyone who was more vulnerable at that time, children, adolescents, elderly folks, lonely people, poor people, people of color with access to white male medicine, women and girls and those with chronic illnesses or disability to name a few groups, were targeted and name called by those in power, primarily white baby boomers, healthy, employed, married owning class members. This ageism can still be seen in how baby boomers almost all seem to have a parent or child or both who they refer to as mentally ill. Baby boomers were (and arguably still are) on the throne when the swords of psychiatric labeling power were being handed out to anyone who needed a scapegoat, to any family looking to identify a patient. It wasn’t a matter of who was “more disturbed” but rather who saw the swords on offer and were in the position to claim them and pierce those who were too busy struggling to survive to gain that access. Labeling others mentally ill is a matter of access. Purely and simply. Some have had access to that “power” to debilitate and stigmatize another’s suffering while others were the recipients of it. So baby boomers and others with access need to stop right now. They need to halt, put their sword tips in the ground and play fair. No, it’s never easy to relinquish access, yet this is violent, this is leaving the rest of us in shambles, this is you being babyish and thinking you can call that science. Yes, you had the fortune of being at your prime at an opportune time, one where conflicts between people turned into severe medical warfare, psychiatric drugs used to silence and abuse your enemy, and a whole institution to back up this type of maturity. And collect on it. Immaturity is legit, we’ve all got it, but it’s safer when it can dress up in its own clothes. Dressing up all adult and calling it psychiatry may work amongst yourselves in your own Cand-ee- Land play groups, but the rest of us see you for what you’re doing: Playing a board game you once had the advantage at, but one that cannot be won. By anyone of any age.