The rise of the mental health gurus

I wanted to write about mental health gurus. 

There seems to be a brand of mental health urban warriors (facilitated by the internet) who shake their funky stuff round cyberspace selling the idea that yoga can cure mental health and if you just do enough psychoanalysis or take the right herbs you will be liberated from bipolar or schizophrenia.

These mental health gurus hang out on you tube or at hearing voices conferences. The mental health jet set. They sashay  through the world spreading their gospel of med reduction and mental health alternatives.

It’s kind of an industry. Some of these people are peer counsellors charging a $100 a time for coaching sessions. They have probably been interviewed on madness radio!

I find most of these people 1) suffered a breakdown 2) had a bad time 3) discovered something like Kabbalah, macrobiotic diet or crystals 4) had some huge epiphany, their life turned around overnight 5) after their road to Damascus experience they go out and spread the gospel to the rest of the world using You Tube, Instagram and zines. 

These people become a poster boy/girl for the radical mental health movement.   They might make a movie using Kickstarter funds, start a Facebook group or get a book published by an indie publishing house. They become twitter celebrities part of the opinion-orati supporting knee jerk left wing politics and every minor cause of the moment. 

Searing through the information superhighway spreading disinformation. Hiding their zealotry to push people off medication under the guise of harm reduction. 

I find their rhetoric that everyone can get off drugs and that the answers to life are in dreams or signs all around us quite un water tight. They express the  mantra that break down is break through but if they ruin your life it will be statutory services that pick up the pieces. 

I just find the mental health matrix unrealistic and when it boils down to it mental health refuseniks basically espouse Marxism. 

They espouse risky experimentations with hallucinogens and bogus philosophies. Yet take no responsibility.

I think the basics message that you should feel guilty for relying on psychiatric medication sucks. Not everyone can get off medication. Mental health gurus tend to be high functioning A type personalities with a mild case of anxiety. When it clears up they swear their recovery was secured by post reichian or gone therapy and feminist praxis groups. 

I like a lot of these people and maybe I’m being unfair (this is a polemic after all). I just feel as though the mental health guru circuit is handy gig to promote books, blogs, products, services of dubious value. 

Maybe I am a bit of a mental health guru myself? 

Advertisements