Psychotic does not mean violent
Mental Health

Psychotic Does Not Mean Violent

One of the most common and damaging stereotypes about mental illness is that mentally ill people are chronically dangerous and violence-prone (Corrigan and Watson, 2002). This stereotype is especially strongly linked to people with psychosis. Like many stereotypes, it's not true in the vast majority of cases, but the general public may not realize that.… Continue reading Psychotic Does Not Mean Violent

Domestic violence is very serious, but not an excuse to call the abuser "psychotic"

Stigma in the News: A “Psychotic” Abuser

My news source of choice is the CBC, Canada's public broadcaster. Usually they're pretty good, but sometimes they slip up. This was the case with an article published on the CBC website on March 18 about a Russian woman, Margarita Gracheva, whose hands had been cut off by her "psychotic husband." The "psychotic" adjective was… Continue reading Stigma in the News: A “Psychotic” Abuser

What is... insights into psychology series
Insights into Psychology

What Is… a Psychological Construct

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychology-related terms. This week's term is psychological construct. In psychology, constructs are ways to describe patterns of behaviour or experiences so that they can be explored, investigated, and discussed. It's a way of putting a name to things that don't exist in a… Continue reading What Is… a Psychological Construct

Is it helpful to sanitize mental illness? Or should we acknowledge that reality can be messy?

Is It Helpful to Sanitize Mental Illness?

Recently, I came across a post that was a myths vs. facts type deal on mental illness stigma. One of the myths identified was that people with mental illness are disabled. The blogger's response was that, on some days, mental illness could make it harder to work for some people, but there are also people… Continue reading Is It Helpful to Sanitize Mental Illness?

Stop the stigma of mental illness: graphic of a red phoenix

Stigma Enshrined in Law: An Open Letter to Government

An open letter to the Hon. Judy Darcy, British Columbia Minister of Mental Health and Addictions I'm writing to express my dismay that it appears that the Government of British Columbia does not intend to take advantage of the modernization of the Health Professions Act to remove section 32(3), which stigmatizes health professionals with a… Continue reading Stigma Enshrined in Law: An Open Letter to Government

Dialogue bubble that says "the police need to be protected from the mentally ill people" – There's a name for that – it's stigma
Mental Health, Stigma

There’s a Name For That — It’s Stigma

I'm pretty active on Pinterest, and sometimes I'll create new pins related to older blog posts. Recently, I created a pin asking whether people in mental health crisis should be handcuffed, and linked to a post I'd done on that topic and the stigma inherent in it. Once in a blue moon I'll get a… Continue reading There’s a Name For That — It’s Stigma


Happy Canada Day! (And Some Stereotype-Busting)

Happy Canada Day! On our nation's birthday**, I thought it would be fun to look at a few stereotypes about Canadians. We live in igloos It takes skill to build an igloo, especially if you don't want the roof to collapse. It also takes snow, which we don't have year-round. Inuit people in Canada's north… Continue reading Happy Canada Day! (And Some Stereotype-Busting)

Ableism: the assumptions people make about ability and disability - symbols representing various disabilities
Society & Social Justice

Ableism: The Assumptions People Make About Disability

- I've seen ableism being mentioned on Twitter a number of times lately. Aside from the obvious meaning, I wasn't familiar with in a mental health context.  This post will explore what ableism means for people with psychiatric disabilities. Defining ableism An article on the Center for Disability Rights website describes ableism this way: Ableism… Continue reading Ableism: The Assumptions People Make About Disability

Are psycho killers psychotic? - graphic of Christian Bale from American Psycho

Are “Psycho Killers” Psychotic?

They may not be politically correct, but terms like "psycho killers" and "psychotic killers" get tossed around rather freely.  Sometimes people will assume that to do horrific things people must have a mental illness.  But is that accurate? It's not, but that kind of misconception may originate from a few different mistaken assumptions. Psychosis One… Continue reading Are “Psycho Killers” Psychotic?

Why does psychosis scare people? Mental illness stigma – graphic of cartoon monster "so crazy"

Why Psychosis Scares People

People tend to fear the unknown.  Psychosis is arguably the group of symptoms that the average person finds the most frightening when it comes to mental health problems. There is stigma associated with many/most/all mental health conditions, but psychosis kicks it up a notch. What psychosis is As a quick explanation, psychosis refers to a… Continue reading Why Psychosis Scares People