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Petition against the proposed DSM-5 changes

Updated on December 28, 2011

The Bible of Mental Health Treatment

Since the 1950s Psychiatrists and Psychologists have been referring to a reference book called the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM for short, to diagnose patients. This book, which is sometimes referred to as the 'bible of mental health treatment', was published by the American Psychiatric Association APA contains a list and description of all the known mental health conditions. The DSM developed from a guide created by US Army and Navy psychiatrists to diagnose mental illness has undergone many changes over the years.

Using the DSM the diagnosis of a person's condition by a psychiatrist will appear along with a set a numbers. Some examples of these are:

296.22 (Major Depressive Disorder, single episode, mild)

300.00 (Anxiety Disorder NOS -not otherwise specified)

301.83 (Borderline Personality Disorder)

314.01 (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder ADHD)

Controversial Updates to the DSM

At one stage psychiatrists wanted to include, in the DSM manual, homosexuality as a mental illness. A lengthy battle ensued which resulted in dropping homosexuality from the list of mental illnesses in the late 80s.

The DSM is presently being updated and the latest version is due for publication in May 2013. Drafts have been published to the APA website and the changes proposed have caused an uproar across the globe.

The new changes proposed will lower the criteria to diagnose certain conditions and make it easier for mental healthcare professionals to diagnose people with psychiatric conditions and prescribe medication. No doubt the changes will make pharmaceutical companies very happy but there are many mental health professionals who are very concerned about the proposed trend.

British Psychologists Object

The British Psychological Society was so concerned that it posted a letter of complaint.

The letter explains how its members are concerned by how people are being negatively affected by the medication of the natural and normal responses to their experiences which they do not see as illnesses. Many argue that by accepting the changes medicating a grieving person might someday become acceptable as the person grieving ticks all the boxes for a Depressive Disorder.

There is a very real concern among psychologists that the changes will increase the number of children being diagnosed with conditions such as ADHD and a subsequent rise in the number of children taking prescribed medication for what would otherwise be normal 'fidgety' behaviour for young children. They are concerned and go as far as saying that it is intolerable that some of the anti psychotic drugs which will be readily prescribed to children and the aged will have very dangerous side effects.

Opposition from within

A very telling development is that Allen Frances, Professor Emeritus at Duke University and who was the chairperson for the group that published the last DSM-4, is now voicing his opposition to the process and proposed amendments to the DSM calling them untested and unscientific. You can read what he says in his blog posts on the Psychology Today website.

Let your voices be heard

The fight over the proposed changes to the DSM to be published as the DSM-5 in 2013 is far from over. Like any other document that seeks to stand as the authority for how to label a human condition, unless the people it seeks to serve speak up then we end up with yet another excuse to become victims of a society we give other people the power to manipulate and control.

Take your power back from those self serving individuals who promote nothing but the ego!

Sign the OnLine Petition to the DSM-5 and let your voices be heard.

DSM-5 against human rights

Here is video explaining how psychiatrists seeks to reinterpret normal life problems as mental disorders which they then treat as organic problems of the brain with medication. Please take the time to watch the video and realise that these proposed changes will one day directly affect everyone of us, our children and our parents.

Thank you.


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    • Spirit Whisperer profile imageAUTHOR

      Xavier Nathan 

      5 years ago from Isle of Man

      Thank you Mr Happy I appreciate your support.

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 

      5 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      "While we (the public) do want to exercise caution about the potential for over medicating people who don't need it, research indicates that most people who would benefit from meds are not getting them." - There's a sheep comment if I have ever seen one. Haha ... Robot talking ... haha ...

      Food is medication, living an impeccable life is medication, following the Red Road is medication ... pills, vaccines and all that ... that's all together a different game. One which involves pride, profit and a whole bunch of other ugly things lol ...

      Thank You for raising awareness on this issue. Will share.


    • Spirit Whisperer profile imageAUTHOR

      Xavier Nathan 

      6 years ago from Isle of Man

      Thank you Mr Shaw, your visit and comment are appreciated.

    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 

      6 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      This is truly important stuff! It's basically the science worshippers saying that anyone with a mental illness is less fit for survival, Darwin eugenics style.

    • Spirit Whisperer profile imageAUTHOR

      Xavier Nathan 

      6 years ago from Isle of Man

      Thank you kimh039. I also wish you and yours a very happy new year.

    • kimh039 profile image

      Kim Harris 

      6 years ago

      I'll have to look over the petition, but a person can just go to the DSM-V website at . The site will open again for comments in spring 2012. Comments will be reviewed by the committee. I didn't agree with some points in the video, spiritwhisperer, although I did enjoy watching it. I found it to be vague and misleading on a couple points. I do applaud the fact that you encourage people to become actively involved in a process that could impact their lives. I find that most people have not encountered an adult or child who has a severe mental illness with symptoms so severe they hinder them from being able to function in life or that render them a danger to themselves, others and society. While we (the public) do want to exercise caution about the potential for over medicating people who don't need it, research indicates that most people who would benefit from meds are not getting them. Meds would significantly improve their quality of life. We need to do better also at ensuring that big pharma is not contaminating the research and influencing prescribers - but that's another story. Thanks for the reminder to keep up to date with the changes, spirit whisperer. I hope your new year is blessed.

    • Spirit Whisperer profile imageAUTHOR

      Xavier Nathan 

      6 years ago from Isle of Man

      Thank you phast7 you are absolutely right in what you say and I will let you know of future developments.

    • phdast7 profile image

      Theresa Ast 

      6 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      Important Hub drawing our attention to an important , unwarranted, and destructive change. Not all negative feelings indicate neurosis or mental illness. We no longer know to tolerate or work through legitimate grief or depression. I signed the petitio0n. Please keep us apprised of future developments.

    • Spirit Whisperer profile imageAUTHOR

      Xavier Nathan 

      6 years ago from Isle of Man

      Thank you Ruby for visiting and your support is greatly appreciated.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      6 years ago from Southern Illinois

      I'm happy that you gave me the opportunity to sign the petition against the DSM-5. I watched the video and was appalled.So many people are being medicated for problems that can be solved by self help. ie, Meditation, exercise, will power. I especially feel sorry for the amount of children who are being wrongfully treated with drugs. Thank you for the information....

    • Spirit Whisperer profile imageAUTHOR

      Xavier Nathan 

      6 years ago from Isle of Man

      Thank you Jlbowden, I always appreciate a comment made from the heart in your case the comment is full of heart. I sympathise with what what your father has been subjected to. My own brother-in-law was placed on anti-depressants from a very early age and ended up taking his own life in his early 30s.

    • Jlbowden profile image

      James Bowden 

      6 years ago from Long Island, New York

      Hello Spirit:

      I really enjoyed your article about the DSM. Not only did I vote it up, but also voted interesting and useful. Aside from politicians, I do not have any use for Psychiatrists. Even though they are supposed to be M.D.s in the field of mental health, they tend to label everyone, just like the DMV, labels signs on our roadways. However in that circumstance it makes much more sense. I can tell you one thing, working within the pharma industry, I can tell you that children should not be given drugs for ADHD. They are given out like candy today. Basically doctors forgot about practicing nutrition, as they did years ago. Try getting kids off all of the sugar and other junk first. To add my dad has had chronic depression all of his life and the psychiatrists have not only labeled him with many different disorders, but have had him on every depression med. you can think of. The video also says it all in a nutshell. Thanks again for sharing this great info. with all of us here within the hubpages community.


    • Spirit Whisperer profile imageAUTHOR

      Xavier Nathan 

      6 years ago from Isle of Man

      Thank you Alastar, your comment and honesty are deeply appreciated. I don't make it a practice to promote petitions and respect your reasons for not signing this one but I do believe that there are changes afoot and people are not as content to let life happen to them any more. The psychiatrists will not get their way this time because enough is enough! Wishing you and yours a Happy New Year Dixie.

    • Alastar Packer profile image

      Alastar Packer 

      6 years ago from North Carolina

      Spirit my friend, thank goodness you published this article on the DSM changes. Your right on target as far as I'm concerned. "No doubt the changes will make pharmaceutical companies very happy..." just about says it all. Nature has a way of taking care but once a person is deep into the meds they can count on being dosed the rest of their lives in many cases. Seen it happen to plenty of folks. Why, I read in some mag where they want to have 50% of the children on meds before long. I don't sign petitions for personal reasons so maybe I shouldn't say anything but do hope alot of people do and it makes a difference, although unfortunately I doubt it. Well done Irish.


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