For the last few years I’ve been holding off on buying Nick Cave’s double-CD Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus until I do something sufficiently awful that I don’t have to but probably should if I’m to get along with my better self. I’ve met my share of challenges since the CD came out, and each time decided I hadn’t endured enough hardship to justify the purchase.
Just like doing something, holding back on doing something creates its own unique set of memories. I remember the night I felt like offing myself but realized I hadn’t heard the CD yet, and the day I quit posting at the lovely Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds message board because I couldn’t keep from reading the threads praising its wonders. Welp, it’s playing right now and Oh Momma, the opening track itself was worth the wait.
Friday I attended a mental health strategic planning session where no one knew I was among the same fucks who declined my participation on the state citizens planning committee last month, but that was the extent of my secret shits and giggles since they took all of 90 minutes to set policy back fifty years.
Proposals: Fingerprint consumers who participate in Assertive Community Treatment. Take the word “stigma” out of the mission statement. Scrap all pretense of a Biopsychosocial framework.
Texas DSHS calls for a transition to the medical model within services. Bio. Move everything but ACT from Behavioral Health to Medical Services. Bio. Place Crisis Service directly under the Medical Director. Bio. Goddamn the next person who uses the word biopsychosocial with a straight face, they are either lying or sick with the kool-aid. Biopsychosocial is a propaganda term used to appease people who advocate the trauma model of mental illness and recovery. Don’t look for these people, evidently there are no advocates anymore, only “advocates”. Seeing the Chairman use finger scare quotes while invoking the term “advocates” was chilling.
So, the redesign boils down to erasure of stigma, advocacy, trauma, and all is biology. From then on all I could think was this is only discourse, they’re framing their discourse, I have to learn about how to frame mine, and discourse is free and getting to the Lyre of Orpheus.
Our consumer run drop in center is called the SHAC for Self-Help and Advocacy Center. They took our consumer run drop in SHAC away from the clueful Austin Mental Health Consumers Org. and hired the former director of NAMI to take over running the place. Thursday the Board will visit the SHAC to discuss this redesign plan with psychiatric service users. I get to talk at this one and believe me I will.