Our editorial team came together for a discussion about how clinical language can advance sanist ideas and to consider some more humanising alternative terms. Some people will prefer some terms and some people will prefer others. These are our suggestions. In the future we would like to create a living glossary that reflects how the meaning of these terms changes over time as they are used for different purposes.
Does the way mental health professionals talk about, diagnose, document and refer people with mental distress do justice to their humanity and their personal recovery, or do they perpetuate sanism?
A conversation between Holly Vine and Ruth Wells
Content warning: Suicide, sexual violence, abortion
Fi Peel takes us on a profound journey through extreme mental distress and suicidality, against the backdrop and stress of bushfires, coronavirus, a housing crisis and the "invisible pandemic" of sanism. This is about the power of music and theatre, and the strength of Fi Peel.
Content warning: Suicide
This episode is a poem written by Damian Rayner. It explores the traumatic loss of his brother to suicide and the ways it has shaped both his personal growth and his work as a clinical psychologist.
"Gaslighting is a common tactic against those with invisible disabilities, as well as differing abilities, and understanding it has been critical to understanding myself."
Jennifer Fehr describes practices of gaslighting and toxic messaging, including self-gaslighting, and the ways in which gaslighting isn't always intentional on the part of the gaslighters.
"Obsession is a nasty dance with trusting oneself."
"I've had courage to walk into places of the mind."
A powerful and moving story by Karen Millstein detailing her lived experience of mental distress and psychiatric treatment.
This episode is a conversation between Karen Millstein and editor Ruah Grace. Karen talks about her practice as a Peer Specialist in mental health, and her own personal experiences of "big feelings", often referred to as psychosis.
CRN 203 398 380X is a story set in current day Canberra, Australia. Anonymous author, CRN 203 398 380X, is smart, deep feeling, frequently in poverty and sick of the way things are. This has earned her a number of diagnoses and consequent traumas. On a good day she doesn't take it too personally and is delighted to be alive.
Racheal Munro's story of being a First Nations woman in the mental health system was read to Annie Sykes, a Maori woman. This is Annie's response, told in conversation with Ruah Grace. It is a story of her own experiences of severe mental distress, hospitalisation, and the ways she has found her own peace.
Content Warning: Racial violence, sexual violence, physical violence, suicide, distressing and dehumanising experiences.
Racheal Munro, a Kamilaroi woman, talked to Ruth Nelson about some of her experiences of extreme mental distress, hospitalisation and being separated from her daughter.
This episode is a conversation about sanism, lived experience of mental distress and psychology between Holly Vine, Ruah Grace, Tina Kelly, Paul Rhodes, Miranda Cashin, Sahra O'Doherty, Max Loomes, Ruth Wells and Ruth Nelson.