observations on life

Mentally ill? Not really.

I have a master’s degree in Social Work.  I’m licensed for private practice as a psychotherapist.  For years and years I have believed what I was taught–that people with “personality disorders” are mentally ill.  One of the reasons I quit doing therapy and went back to hospice work was because I often wanted to throttle my patients with personality disorders.  Which of course made me believe I was not cut out to do therapy.  I felt bad about it.  It was wrong to think this way about one’s patients.

The longer I’m away from it, and the more I watch Donald Trump and his supporters, and the more stories I hear from others about their families, or their coworkers, or their bosses, the less I am inclined to feel bad about disliking my clients.  In fact, more and more I feel we have all been deceived by the way we have been taught to look at “mental illness.”  We have been brain-washed into believing that people who are merely assholes are mentally ill.  I am guilty of succumbing to this propaganda, and other propaganda about mental illness in general.

The crux of my argument?  “Personality Disorder” is a nice, politically correct, and lucrative way of saying that these people are mean, manipulative, ego-driven, self-serving, compassionless miscreants, and there’s nothing anybody else can do about it.

 

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