Women, Addiction and Nation by Sonia Soans

After acquiring a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology a few years ago I couldn’t wait to put my knowledge to good use. Amongst all the mainstream clinical education I was also introduced to the anti psychiatry movement tough briefly. The thrill of working in a clinical environment was short lived. The nature of psychiatry and its dehumanising effect is something we never talk about much less teach. Treatment received by the patients depended upon their class and gender.
Women addicts, like their male counterparts, face stigma except in their case they have to contend with ideas of sexual promiscuity. Often during therapy sessions prejudiced opinions of women addicts were expressed despite evidence to the contrary. What would have been seen as neutral or normal behaviour outside the rehab was turned into symptoms of addiction and ‘addictive personality’. The power of Psychology is so immense that once a diagnosis has been made every aspect of an individuals life is turned into a symptom. Read more…

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