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Magical Thinking

Well that's that for pursuing a diagnosis for Aspergers or anything remotely similar.

I contacted the Patient Advisory Liaison Service (PALS) to try and sort this out after being lied to by the clinician regarding referring me to the ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) people. That never happened and she continues to deny saying she would. Of course I cannot prove this and so the patient-doctor dynamic kicks in: I'm the lowly patient, she's the expert doctor, her reputation versus mine and so who wins?

I could make a complaint, but what would be the point. I might get a nice letter in a few months time saying sorry in a mealy mouthed way, but it doesn't get me any closer to what I need. That being a diagnosis, a formal, written and recorded, recognition of the issues I deal with. Lacking that, dealing with the systems in society, chiefly the DWP, becomes more difficult. Unfortunately the medical profession doesn't seem to care about that.

We have a society fuelled by anxiety and stress that also denies mental health issues as anything other than just laziness or weakness of character. Our society is built on toxic macho stereotypes leaving no room for such problems. Combined with a medical service that is completely ill equipped to deal with these problems, except in extreme (re: suicidal) cases, and the average person is left to cope. This only normalises the levels of stress and anxiety and mental anguish that people have, no matter how debilitating or serious. In short, nobody cares.

All that I am recommended is, once again, the agency (partnered with ATOS, which says it all) called Positive Step. In lieu of a proper holistic service they have become the go-to people the NHS uses when dealing with someone who has mental health issues (of a non-extreme kind). Unfortunately, Positive Step has been dishonest about their provision: all they offer is a specific, short, curriculum of CBT, a therapy with mixed results that doesn't apply to all situations despite what they might say. This is sold to the medical profession on a lie: it is the same service whether it is sold as anxiety relief, self esteem, 'wellbeing therapy'  (whatever that is), talking therapy, mood management, etc. I have had to correct my doctor multiple times that they do not offer a multitude of different services for these different approaches and problems; they simply do one thing and one thing only. It is not a panacea by any means.

It also contributes to the general idea that one is responsible for one's own issues and that, essentially, by thinking positively and cheering up, one can overcome. That is what the CBT they offer amounts to: relax (easier said than done of course) and try and talk yourself out of fear of X (be it spiders, heights, clowns, etc). If your anxiety or mood comes from a legitimate concern: lack of income, lack of a home, society, capitalism, etc, then forget it. Yet, despite the reality of the truth of these external conditions, it is still 'your' fault insofar as you are the only one that can change anything. Perversely this is a tacit admission of the reality even though one cannot change external conditions, not at least by simply wishing them away.

We are victims of systems that, at least, predate our appearance on this earth. I was born, without consent, into a system not of my design or choosing. Yet I am expected to agree to its terms without discussion or compromise. If I struggle or fail to meet or live up to those conditions I alone am held accountable as it is clearly a personal failing. In that respect the purveyors of magical thinking believe that I, the subject, am the agent of change, or at least the author of my own misfortune. Vapid solutions, talking about personal journeys and wish fulfilling magical roadmaps to success, are offered, in exchange for government money of course by the likes of charities who should know better. They do not and cannot have the solution, yet they will not accept the reality and instead simply reinforce it by blaming the victim.

When will this change?


  1. Those who implemented the roll out of CBT to be the only therapy available to those with mental distress, did not stop to examine what they were doing, nor the crude, harmful & behaviouristic garbage that CBT is.

    Positive Step and the like saved every GP in the country from having to educate themselves about all forms of mental distress. It leaves them relying on their arrogance and ignorance to rebutt any challenges from the patient.

    We need a patient revolution, we must stand up to this harmful rubbish dished out as "therapy" by ignorant, inexperienced so called HCPs. Never accept it, ever.

    PS: PALS will treat you as a ping pong ball, batting you back and forth between them and the provider, whoever they may be. Getting involved with PALS just invites another level of frustration to life.

    1. Hi, Pals have been no help. I didn't expect much anyway and didn't bother to pursue a formal complaint. What's the point. Interestingly I did get a letter from the diagnostic dr that was full of false claims, also sent to entirely the wrong GP surgery for some reason. they claimed they never said the result was inconclusive and that a developmental history would have been irrelevant anyway. Even the PALS person said the opposite. the whole thing is a shit show.

      I won't be wasting my time with Positive Step anyway, I've given them more than enough chances. I tried explaining their bullshit to the PALS rep, as I said, but I doubt they were receptive.

    2. Hi Ghosty, wise choice to end contact with PS too. We have a world now where no patient is believed, standing up for the truth of your story is seen as heresy. Discarding need for developmental history ensures that you have nothing to back you up that they will be forced to respond to by something other than ticking boxes.

      With modern medicine ignoring the significance of trauma of whatever degree, there is not one ounce of hope really. For anyone.

      I'm sorry they've been such apathetic, evasive, useless cunts to you. You don't deserve it. No one does.

    3. It's all about the process. It is not about the person.

      The system does not listen to or acknowledge that you are a person trapped in a broken system.

      Until that changes they will not and cannot help.

      Unfortunately they don't seem to really care.

  2. Just to add, challenging their manipulated version of your truth can often bring out the adversarial in these charlatans. Have experienced this myself. It leads to impossible futures, obstruction to legitimately required medical help and a miserable soul destroying experience.

    We should not be blackmailed into submission to their bullshit and box ticking for fear of losing the care that is our right.

    1. Of course. These are people that really don't like their authority being challenged, and unfortunately they hold the balance of power in that relationship. That's why i didn't pursue a formal complaint - and also becuase it would achieve nothing. Especially not when they outright lie to cover their own arses.


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