Arnold's Spot
Arnold's Spot

Hi, and a huge WELCOME to our viewers.

Emotionally charged reactions from a number of readers move me to give their more difficult experiences in therapy a stronger voice. Adding considerably to their accounts will be those from my personal experience offering analyses with PDC/BDP (Biometric Definitions of Personality) over a period extending 40 years and more. Hence this blog.

It would not be stretching the truth to say that no accredited group of professionals have taken so much from so many and given so very little of value in return as have this pretentious coterie of educated ignoramuses. To paraphrase the bard, "thievery by any other name is as much a crime." Academically accredited clinical psychologists are probably more ignorant of the human psyche than a diminutive chihuahua, and certainly the least qualified to undertake therapy in issues seriously crippling the lives of those seeking their intervention. Inasmuch as their walls are bedecked with elegantly framed and ribboned diplomas attesting to the time they spent in academia they are literally intellectualizing robots programmed to think and speak in a singularly mechanical format.

Excepting the management of behavioral phobias, there is nothing essentially human here. A creative imagination, a capacity for abstract conceptualization and the expansion of meaning, are light years removed from their mental apparatus. Even expressions of empathy from cognitive behaviorists extend from contrived formula. As a rule, their longest standing clients are lonely ladies desperate to be with someone who has patience for them, or assuring them that their opinions have substance.

If I was to generalize, the impression of many was the sense that their therapist was about as helpful as a rock.
Many who went with the hope of healing a troubled marriage met up with a therapist who believed only in the advantages of separation and divorce. Several others suggested "polyamory" - extra-marital affairs with the partners sharing their experiences as the most promising therapy. Then there were sex therapists who seemed to relate to their clients as would a garage mechanic a dead car.

A good number complained of the therapy sessions wholly dependent on their own leads without the therapist contributing any constructive ideas, insights or direction. Equally numerous were those peeved that the therapist was determined to go along with a program that had absolutely no bearing on the issues needed resolving (dumber than a rock) - only adding to the shame and guilt already heavy in the weave of the burdens they bore. Some complained that the therapist would not remember the issues raised in earlier sessions, or would take phone calls at the expense of their allotted time. The reasons were many including such as questioned the integrity, the professional behavior or even legitimacy Of their therapist's license.

What seemed clear was that no single complaint was unique. And, clearly, knowing that others shared virtually identical experiences had its own therapeutic value. Were these experiences resolved in a manner that might be useful to others? This, essentially, is the reason for this blog. This blog is free and open. We aren't asking for names, or passwords. If you wish to be notified of new contributions that would be fine. Otherwise just save your access to the website, and help us pull the rug out from under these intellectually impoverished elitists.

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Without a Trace of Shame

26 May, 2020
(C) Arnold Holtzman

50 years ago, and several decades beyond that, when clinical psychologists found themselves failing in their efforts to alleviate the difficulties which so damaged the quality of their patients' lives, they invented a diagnosis they called Minimal Brain Damage, or MBD. If they decided that the problem was somehow organic in origin their professional efforts could not be faulted. MBD became, without question, the most preferred dump for all their clinical failures, and remained so for about 20 years.

With remarkable suddenness the MBD diagnosis vanished like the proverbial pot of gold at the edge of a rainbow. It was immediately replaced by another dump labeled Borderline. Borderline was a shortened reference to Borderline Personality Disorder which had "self-damaging behavior" as only one of at least 5 prominent behavioral characteristics that, when found together, merited a diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder.

Suddenly, "self-damaging behavior" became the only symptom that mattered. And if one considers that virtually every troubling neurotic condition is "self-damaging" then one can understand how virtually every troubling issue became labeled Borderline and delivered to the waiting dump. And the therapist is safely insulated from blame. There is no mode of therapy that can resolve Borderline Personality Disorder (or any of the organic personality disorders). Particularly amusing is the opening line in the foreword by Dr. Allen Frances to Professor Michael Stone's 355 page "The Fate of Borderline Patients" - "Dr. Stone has discovered that borderline patients tend to get better if only they live long enough."

The Borderline diagnosis also had a lifespan of 15 to 20 years. At this time, it is lost to eternity in the dusty labyrinth of psychobabble idiocies. But only to be replaced by an insidious and often crippling diagnostic monster specifically when identified in young children. This would be Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder, or ADHD.

In adults ADHD is virtually a non-starter. It is diagnosed in instances when the individual complains of missing deadlines or forgetting planned meetings. It is diagnosed as an explanation for impulses of gross impatience and anger when waiting in line or managing traffic. Mood swings and impulsiveness fall into the same package of symptoms. But with adults this constitutes a diagnosis that is inherently meaningless - totally empty of content - inasmuch as years of academic education and clinical practice would seem to invest it with singular importance.

Virtually every grade school teacher suffers the experience of a restless child who constantly disturbs others, constantly misbehaves, suffers a short attention span, seems not to learn anything, when the child's parents are themselves helpless, and punishments are of no avail. Enter the school doctor, or child psychologist, to the blare of victory trumpets. He/she now introduces the magical elixir that changes everything. The drug Methylphenidate, or by its popular name Ritalin, is administered to the child who immediately metamorphoses into another child by the very same name. But this child is calm, reasonable, attentive, and otherwise in total contradiction to its former self. The teacher praises God as do the child's grateful parents.

If the child is under nine years of age with its brain still developing the Ritalin may have crippled that child for life. I am not a medical person therefore without the qualifications to expand on this assertion. But the internet offers many tens of laboratory studies and concrete medical evidence to underline the very serious anomalies that the developing brain may be subject to in the wake of Ritalin administration. I offer just a few.

The damage is irreversible. Yet Ritalin continues to be prescribed and administered to young children diagnosed as hyperactive at schools and medical health centers.
I can envision the day when massive class action suits will be brought against Ministries of Education, and perhaps other offices, in many countries- and for all the right reasons.