Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Pseudoscience you say? My brain chemistry would beg to differ!

Does everyone remember that famous Today Show interview in 2005 that Matt Lauer had with Tom cruise? This was the interview in which Tom Cruise bashed psychiatry while he continually spoke over top of Matt Lauer, not allowing him to get more than a few words in here and there. That interview permanently changed my view of Tom Cruise for the worse.  I absolutely refuse to watch a Tom Cruise movie now, whether it is a new movie or an old movie, I refuse to support him.

If you didn’t see it or you would like to watch it again, below is a link to it.  If you choose not to watch it or re-watch it, don’t worry, I will post some of the major Tom Cruise quotes from that interview below.

Interview link:

Matt Lauer and Tom Cruise Today Show Interview

Before I begin on the quotes from Cruise's Today Show interview, I want to remind you that not long before Tom’s interview with Matt Lauer took place Cruise publicly bashed Brooke Shields for her use of Paxil, an anti-depressant medication she took to treat her postpartum depression. Tom Cruise expressed disappointment in Brooke Shields because she chose to take a psychiatric medication.  Here is a quote in which Tom Cruise expressed some of his thoughts on postpartum depression:

"When you talk about postpartum, you can take people today, women, and what you do is you use vitamins. There is a hormonal thing that is going on, scientifically, you can prove that. But when you talk about emotional, chemical imbalances in people, there is no science behind that.”

So in short from that quote and his others, Tom Cruise believes that Postpartum depression has no scientific background outside of being a "hormonal thing" and that it can be treated solely with vitamins. As Brooke Shields pointed out, Tom Cruise has never been pregnant and therefore has no room to speak about postpartum depression in such a manner.

Moving on to some notable Tom Cruise quotes from his Today Show interview with Matt Lauer:

“I've never agreed with psychiatry, ever. Before I was a Scientologist I never agreed with psychiatry. And when I started studying the history of psychiatry, I understood more and more why I didn't believe in psychiatry.”

“As far as the Brooke Shields thing is, look, you gotta understand, I really care about Brooke Shields. I think here's a wonderful and talented woman and I wanna see her do well and I know that Psychiatry is a pseudo-science.”

At one point when Matt Lauer tried to counter Cruise’s irrational arguments, Cruise said to him “Here's the problem, you don't know the history of psychiatry. I do.”

Matt Lauer points out that there are examples where people have benefited from psychiatric medication and that Brook Shields is one of those individuals.  

 Tom Cruise counters this argument with: 

 “There is no such thing as a chemical imbalance.”

“All it does is mask the problem. There's ways of vitamins and through exercise and various things. I'm not saying that that isn't real. That's not what I'm saying. That's an alteration of what I'm saying. I'm saying that drugs aren't the answer, these drugs are very dangerous. They're mind-altering, anti-psychotic drugs. And there are ways of doing it without that so that we don't end up in a brave new world.”

When Matt Lauer asks Cruise "If anti-depressants work for Brooke Shields, why is that not OK?"  Tom Cruise responds with "I disagree with it." (Sorry Brooke Shields, depressed you must be because Tom Cruise "disagrees" with your use of Paxil)!

I know that this interview was 7 years ago but the arguments haven’t changed; those who are in battle with they field of Psychiatry are still making the same arguments.  In fact, I have unfortunately seen the argument made tenfold in recent weeks and months. I use Tom Cruise as an example because he is well known and he has publicly expressed his views giving me some quotes to put out there for all to see.  Unfortunately, this is a viewpoint that many, many individuals share with Tom Cruise. Tom Cruise is a Scientologist and the views that he has expressed regarding psychiatry are very much rooted in his Scientological beliefs.  These views are commonly shared by Scientologists alike as well as non-scientologists who for whatever reason have chosen not to believe in psychiatry.
Over the years, I have heard this argument on a number of occasions from a number of different sources and individuals; the argument that psychiatry is a joke, a pseudoscience.  These same individuals oppose psychiatric medications at all costs.  I have seen comments that individuals have placed on articles on the NAMI site or other psychiatric related websites that blast the article posted and the field of psychiatry.  I have also seen these types of responses to individual’s personal blogs or comments on a posting that an individual has made on their personal mental health related Facebook page or Twitter page.  These types of comments and views pop up all over the place in the cyber world of psychiatry and mental health.

Not only do the individuals placing these hateful comments bash the field of psychiatry and the use of medications but they make blanket insults towards each and every one of us who could not survive without the psychiatric medications that we take daily.  These individuals say things that imply that we are weak for taking these medications or uneducated for believing that psychology is actually a science and so on and so forth. These individuals minimize our illnesses as if what we are going through is so easy to deal with.  Boy, how stupid we have all been for taking these Psychiatric medications when we could have just chosen to go down the road of exercising and taking vitamins.  Oh wait, I do exercise and take vitamins!  In reality they have no idea what we go through every day and never will!  

I’ve been reading comments and articles like that for years but it was not until recently when I began this blog that I became more active in staying aware of psychiatric issues.  So reading more blogs, following mental health related Facebook pages and reading more articles leads to me come across more of these anti-psychiatry posts. Unfortunately, it doesn’t get easier to read them with each new one that I read, I find myself getting that same angry feeling throughout my body and that same unsettling feeling in my stomach that I felt during the Tom Cruise interview and that I have felt with every person’s anti-psychiatry words I have read or heard since then.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I completely believe that everybody has a right to their opinion.  However, I have two issues with these anti-psychiatry views.  First of all, they are pure opinion, they are not fact based at all.  Second, you have no right to push your opinions on me, medications are what work for me, who are you to tell me what to do with my body? I wouldn’t dare tell you what medications you could and couldn’t take. Oh, and back to reason one, you have no fact to back up your opinion so please keep it to yourself.

Tom Cruise says "the ideal scene is that no one has to take an anti-psychotic medication"! First of all, his use of the term "anti-psychotic medication" in which he used over and over in the interview to describe anti-depressants and Ritalin and Adderall shows that he does not have the understanding of psychiatry that he claims to have when speaking to Matt Lauer.  Anti-psychotic medications are a class of medications that fall under the larger class of psychiatric medications. Second and more importantly; guess what Tom Cruise, those of taking psychiatric medications 100% agree with you on that one, if we didn't have to take them we WOULDN'T! I literally owe my life to psychiatric medications.  I would not be alive today without them! 

Plain and simple, enough said, PSYCHIATRIC MEDICATIONS keep me alive, without them I would be dead!

Would they dare tell someone with cancer that they don’t need the Chemo or radiation that saves their life?

Would they dare tell someone with diabetes that they don’t need the insulin that keeps them alive?

Would they dare tell someone with high blood pressure that they don’t need the blood pressure medications that save their life?

Would they dare tell someone with heart disease that they don’t need the medications that keep them alive?

The list of physical illnesses could go on and on, the answer to each of them would more than likely be NO! They would not tell someone with a physical illness that they should not take the medications that keep them alive.  So that leaves the question, why would they tell those of us with a mental illness that our lives are not worthy of being saved and therefore we should not take the medications that keep us alive?

“I’ll let them think what they want. If they care enough to bother with what I do, then I’m already better than them” –Marilyn Monroe

Thanks for reading as always! Until next time…

-Kissing Stigma Goodbye-

No comments: