In the episode, "An Interview with Author Rob Wipond on His Book, 'Your Consent Is Not Required: The Rise in Psychiatric Detentions, Forced Treatment, and Abusive Guardianships'" (S5, E7), I have the chance to explore my most esteemed topics of psychiatric coercion and forced treatment with one of the major players right now in the field, journalist Rob Wipond.
Rob Wipond is a freelance journalist and creative nonfiction writer who writes frequently at the interfaces between psychiatry, civil rights, community issues, policing, surveillance and privacy, and social change. His articles have been nominated for seventeen magazine and journalism awards, and he’s the author of the book Your Consent is Not Required: The Rise in Psychiatric Detentions, Forced Treatment, and Abusive Guardianships (BenBella, 2023).
His insightful book brings to light the broad increase in people being psychiatrically incarcerated, particularly in the US, Canada, and UK. But why are so many detained and what were the treatment outcomes? The data is limited, but Rob manages to do extensive research in his book compiling the available data in a comprehensive analysis of what is really going on in the mental health system. His research has shown how the numbers stack up-- that we have many more beds in mental health facilities than ever before (despite the overriding assumption to the contrary), and that more and more people are being incarcerated for a widening array of reasons: from
whistleblowers and political dissidents, creatives and out of the box thinkers, disruptive children in class, elderly people suffering dementia, and workplace mental health cases.
What Rob has found is that most people do not improve after these treatments, but rather deteriorate further. Victims of the system become regularly institutionalized or “revolving door mental patients,” and as medicalization, manipulative coercion and forced drugging become the gold standard, our society accepts the status quo of social control, easy fix solutions, and defining things as mental health problems instead of looking at social constructs such as affordable housing and peer-support respites. And once a person is labeled a mental patient, very little they say is taken seriously.
As people are losing hope in the system, the mental health industry becomes even more aggressive as they continue to try to rope people in, but Rob gives a voice to the voiceless through the power of his incredible research and his understanding of human suffering. Rob encourages people after entering a non-ordinary mental state to examine their own mental distress and find their own path to self-understanding. Rob openly tackles this controversial topic with character and strength, and his support and compassion regarding those harmed is courageous and empowering to all those who feel betrayed by the system.
To learn more about Rob, visit his website at: https://robwipond.com/
Or follow him on:
Your Consent Is Not Required (BenBella, 2023) is now available wherever books are sold in hardcover, ePub, Kindle, and audiobook.
#mentalillness #mentalhealth #chemicalimbalancetheory #psychiatricincarceration #BigPharma #involuntaryhospitalization #forcedtreatment #wildfloweralliance #suicidehotlines
Please visit my website at: www.jengaitasiciliano.com
Don't forget to subscribe to the Not As Crazy As You Think YouTube channel @SicilianoJen
Instagram: @ jengaita
LinkedIn: @ jensiciliano
Twitter: @ jsiciliano