Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Avoidable Dealth of Rebecca Riley

In chapter 10 of John Ronson's, The Psychopath Test, the focus is on misuses, misdiagnosis and problems of the DSM. It starts with protesters of the DSM making fun of the disorders classified in the DSM and how basically anything remotely off about someone can be diagnosed as a disorder. When the DSM came out, more civilians bought the book than psychiatrists even existed which led to self-diagnosis and misdiagnosis of disorders. Robert Spitzer, the man respinsible for the documentation and acuthorization of most of the disorders listed in the DSM, eventually admitted that a lot of the disorders listed in the book, are labeling normal people with a "disorder." The example of the psychiatry hospitals shows how normal people can be misdiagnosed so simply by one lie or off remark. The rest of the chapter is examples of how children that normally would just be considered normal children, now are diagnosed with ADD, Bipolar Disorder...etc just for being wild and hyper and acting like a kid. Rebecca Riley was given too much Bipolar medication by her parents before bed and in the morning she was found dead and the parents were convicted of her murder. I found the Katie Curic interviews quite interesting in that the mother easily and simply gave in and said that her child probably didn't have Bipolar Disorder and was most likely just a hyper kid. The parents just gave her medicine to shut her up...well, now she's shut up alright, forever.

I honestly can say that this was my favorite book that I have ever read so far. I am so intrigued! I have commented on basically everything already in previous blog posts. I do though want to mention how the one mother in chapter 10 was talking about having to duck tape diapers on her kid, my parents had to do the same thing to me. Kids want to be free...or maybe it's just cause I am super claustrophobic, hopefully I don't need medicine for that? Ha.  I really liked the whole idea of the book and the end of tying in how everything is misdiagnosed and people just need a title or reason to why they feel the way they do, even if they are actually completely normal. Psychology is a weird concept and kind of makes my brain hurt. I would love to do more research on it but honestly I feel that a lot of psychology is just made up. People can't have THAT many problems. 100 years ago there were no diagnoses like there are today and everyone (for the most part) turned out just fine.

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