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Re: Marplan and insomnia and tolerance

Posted by Scott L. Schofield on December 31, 1999, at 10:08:58

In reply to Re: Marplan and insomnia and tolerance, posted by Elizabeth on December 31, 1999, at 4:38:51

> > Is it more compassionate to understand and avoid reacting to the behaviors and words of one whose mental state has been compromised by illness, or to be reactionary in such a way as to disregard the contribution of that illness to the resultant psyche? Is it one’s fault that they are mentally ill – regardless of diagnosis? Is it within their control to change without any help and of their own volition? Perhaps it is the honest knee-jerk reaction of others that helps one to recognize that something is not right. Would this not be the more compassionate choice, as it might lead to an improvement in their quality of life?

> I don't know the answer to that, Scott, and it's an interesting question. I don't know that it's particularly uncompassionate to say that one thinks someone is manic, though (unless it's being used as a way to devalue that person's opinions). As to whether it's in one's power to change, I think help is required, but practically speaking, you have to seek out that help first. And in order to do that, you have first to realize that something is wrong!

Perhaps this is a topic that should be started as a new thread.

> Several people have tried to point out to Phillip that he comes across as manic or psychotic (not just in the length and disorganization of his posts, but also in some of his odd ideas and unusual turns of phrase), but he denies that he is. Of course he might just lack insight into his condition, as many manic (or otherwise psychotic) people do.

It strikes me that the way you responded to Phillip’s post was constructive. I think it helps to illuminate what I feel is an important perspective. I believe we have a bit of a “catch-22” here. The fact that someone who is mentally ill fails to recognize that he has a problem and therefore does not seek help is the manifestation of the illness itself. Since this person will not be treated (because he does not recognize or accept his illness), his errant judgement regarding his illness will be perpetuated. Thus, he never receives the help he needs. Even if one recognizes that something is wrong does not guarantee that they will have the good judgement or energies to do anything about it.

> BTW a particular issue with this is whether a less-than-honest "therapist" might take advantage of the impaired judgment of such individuals to offer less-than-sound treatment. Not that this is necessarily happening here, but it's something that *could* happen.


Wishing you a happy new year... Let's hope it's a good one.

- Scott




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