The Deserving Mad?

“As in the past, modern governments differentiate between the ‘deserving’ and the ‘undeserving’ poor. The ‘deserving’ are those in need who are unable to work because they are too old, disabled, or too sick. The ‘undeserving’ are people who don’t want to work and often it is assumed that all able-bodied unemployed people fit into that category. 

 It was necessary to ensure that  ‘welfare’ kept the unemployed in a poorer and more miserable state than the lowliest worker in order to ensure that there remained an incentive to work at even the worst of jobs.With regard to the other class, the unemployable, the wastrel and the loafer, the sternest measures are necessary.”

In lots of  ways little has changed in attitude. Many still think that anyone fit in body is simply lazy or maybe an addict of some kind and deserves to suffer. The current UK Conservative government have made it much harder to claim disability and the numbers of homeless are rising rapidly. I read in a newspaper several years ago from one Conservative MP who said the unemployed needed to be starved to encourage them to work. Another person said that if Stephen Hawking( almost completely paralysed and in a wheelchair) can work then anyone could!  Hmm I dont think he could work in a warehouse or picking fruit though.

This is very relevant to mental health. The Tories thought that there were far to many mad people claiming benefits in the UK and therefore decided to cut disability payments, make it much harder for new claimants and try to push lots of extremely mentally ill people back into work even though many have actually committed suicide as a result.  Of course they did nothing to encourage companies to hire them.  There is a supposed cure for anxiety and depression and that is CBT which is pushed all the time. Apparently it has a high success rate but does not look as good under closer scrutiny. Somebody I know wrote this the other day which I totally agree with . “The worst of it is how the media and government jump on the whole CBT thing to get people off of benefits. You don’t deserve to have benefits when there is a cure and if you are ill in that way it becomes your own fault because you haven’t tried hard enough. “

In reality 1/4 of people cant handle CBT as its too hard so drop out. After all you are supposed to just make a hierarchy list of all your worst and most avoided fears and then just do them which can go disastrously wrong if not done slowly and correctly. Often the treatment is shortened from about 12 -20 sessions to just 6 to save money and sometimes NHS therapist are simply not very good. “I have seen GP surgeries offer CBT, when I talked to the Clinic Nurse/ “CBT Therapist”, she had only been on a one-week course, so could describe herself as “CBT Trained”  A one week course is hardly the same as a trained therapist. I have probably learned more from online books. Perhaps I should set up a therapy business and it also stops me being unemployed! Hooray!

Patients with sometimes acute mental illness are forced into something they cant handle and blamed for not trying hard enough when it fails. Then the government can claim they deserve to have their benefits taken away. What wankers!

And then does CBT even have great success in the long term?

“In the short-term, 40 per cent of those who complete a course of CBT, typically five to 20 sessions of up to an hour, are said to have recovered.

But ‘extensive evidence’ shows that two years on, depressed or anxious people who had CBT were no more likely to have recovered than those who had no treatment, said Mr James.”

So it might be all for nothing anyway.

 

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Is CBT a scam?

‘Extensive evidence’ shows that two years on, depressed or anxious people who had CBT were no more likely to have recovered than those who had no treatment, said Oliver James, chartered psychologist.

After 5 to 20 sessions those with anxiety or depression appear to recover, 2 years later they are no different to those who had no treatment, he said. ‘As a treatment, rafts of studies have shown it to be ineffective in delivering long-term therapeutic benefits to patients with anxiety and depression.

So I am still trying to convince myself if going to the doctor would actually be a good idea. After all will it really help me find a job when I have so many other problems?  Putting yourself through up to 20(much less on the NHS) weeks of intensive exposure with resulting stress and then when you are on your own again it all goes out the window is not great to hear. I just read someone had to wait 18 months for CBT for depression on the NHS so it can take ages to even get started.

In the short-term, 40 per cent of those who complete a course of CBT, typically five to 20 sessions of up to an hour, are said to have recovered. CBT appeals to politicians and NICE because it is quick and cheap

Only 40%. I thought it was 75%.  Less than half is an appalling success rate. But dont forget some people say “There is loads of help out there, dont suffer alone!” There isn’t. Its a lie and in reality a tremendous struggle to even get the right help or find anyone. Time to start praying to God again.

CBT again

Lots of people on the social anxiety forum seem to have had very bad experiences with CBT although it only works for 75% anyway. The trouble is that many NHS trusts are advocating using CBT as the only solution to all anxiety and depression cases as they are so short of money and think its the best option. It doesn’t work for some people as all talking to strangers is hard and often does not get any better due to constant failure which as I have said many times only increases anxiety. You have to have success to be able to gain confidence in order to try  new things and often trying to make small talk to someone at work or a cashier in the supermarket is strained and awkward so it is painful and embarrassing. This sometimes even results in ridicule. It did for me at work when i  was told that I only talk about certain subjects with certain people. Yes, that’s because I never did anything or went anywhere and had no idea what to talk about otherwise so the only other option was complete avoidance. They advise you to try anything as if its always positive but in reality all failure or weird behaviour from us gets ridicule which actually makes our anxiety worse. It obviously needs some kind of way to help people to communicate better and more confidently first before they go into real life situations or they only fail and get worse.This is why other types of therapy are often far more useful before we try social situations but of course everyone is different.

I remember the self help book I got many years ago which advised going into the local shop and talking about the weather. Yet if you do that every day and are awkward or the shop keeper is less than friendly you will soon be known as the mad or strange person that always talks about the weather. if you go and sit alone in the coffee shop and act weird and nervous you will be known by the staff and regulars as the weird nervous guy and even laughed at. if you have chronic paranoia as I have had and thought everyone was mocking me then you get much worse, not better. Without having the confidence which often includes a normal voice, mannerisms and body language which most normal people take for granted the very shy person often gets worse by continually doing and saying the wrong thing and feeling awkward. This is why CBT for me with my lack of motivation, depression and cynicism which are often ignored would be no more useful than telling me to pretend I was a giant chicken and clucking at the shopkeeper although actually hypnotism may be more useful than CBT.

Thoughts on Therapy

Although a wide range of people respond well to cognitive behavioural therapy, experts point out that the type of person likely to get the most benefit is someone who:

  • Is motivated
  • Sees him or herself as able to control the events that happen around them
  • Has the capacity for introspection

 

Well I certainly dont qualify for the first two.There seems to be only two things a doctor can do for anxiety apart from ignore you. First is give you pills to calm you down if you are hysterical. Second is some kind of therapy. The most popular is CBT these days so I wanted to look up the sort of thing it entails and what they want you to do. The first problem is depression though. Although chronic social anxiety often results in depression due to a complete breakdown in a normal life regarding job, relationships and friends some CBT for anxiety seems to demand an enthusiasm and motivation to overcome your problems and as stated before I have absolutely none. I read that CBT for depression is completely different than that for anxiety so would I have to be completely cured of depression and negativity first(brainwashed?) before even looking at CBT for anxiety?

Next I read that CBT only works for about half people for depression and three quarters for anxiety which doesn’t sound too promising especially as I am in that cynical,negative mindset rather than the “Carpe diem” category. Its probably worse at my age and for those who are not optimistic. Is that my normal negative thinking or simply the truth? You see getting a job after many years of long term unemployment at my age is much harder for even a normal person so good reason to be depressed then. I also have a problem doing any physical work as I have joint problems which meant I was once taking 20 painkillers a day and after seeing  the doctor several times he refused to treat me any further, seemed to think I was making the whole thing up and I had to change jobs at the time in the company I worked for.  A relationship is just as bad as I have chronic intimacy issues, didn’t manage to ejaculate until I was 27 and my brain still thinks its about 27 anyway and only fancies females roughly the same age and I find almost all people my own age very ugly.  So the best I could hope for is some kind of job I could manage in to stop myself becoming homeless and maybe the odd friend to do stuff with if I am lucky. Living life to the full my arse! Hanging on by a thread more like.

The problem with CBT for depression on the NHS is that it might be  group therapy to save money like it was with my friend who was put in a group of people who had many different anxiety problems and having SA as well I will clam up and not speak in front of any group of strangers or talk about personal problems making such treatment absolutely useless. Also I have heard in any group CBT you get the peer pressure effect where people who think they are doing loads actually get angry at those who they dont think are doing enough as if they then have no right to get better so I would probably attack them. I mean literally. I cant stand those sort of people.

It may be depression but every time I read about CBT treatment it seems so absolutely useless and hopeless to me that I want to kill myself again. Its like they really have no idea and try any old crap and then blame you for not trying hard enough. I dont like the idea of being told to do homework and tasks each week and having to discuss them especially if in a group. Go and ask strangers in the street for directions! Go and sit in a cafe alone and enjoy it! Bollocks.I still think that many so called irrational thoughts are actually quite true and most normal people are incredibly judgemental. Nevertheless I will try and find more information online on what it actually entails and what people who did it really thought. Not just the positive ones though, they just annoy me.