Dr. Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D,B.C.S.A.,DAPA.

Dr. Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D,B.C.S.A.,DAPA.
e-mail: batushkad@yahoo.com

Friday, September 29, 2006


Many programs for autistics today are designed to change the person from being an autistic to being 'typical'. Some of these strategies are done by coercive and also aversive means. Such approaches as ABA and its spin-off verbal behavior are paramount to treating individuals in an animalistic fashion and based on stimulus-response. Such strategies may cause a person to become more compliant and even robotic but does not give them any real context for developing new skills. It forces them to enter a world that is foreign to them.
Instead, approaches towards helping autistics should be focused on self-determination, respect, and dignity. Rather than forcing them to conformity to the world of 'typicals', it should have others seek to enter and understand their worlds and to help the autistic to be able to navigate through the challenges presented by the mainstream. Programs should also respect the unique means of perceptions and talents that autistics do present with.
Also, one who is autistic today will be autistic tomorrow. Why do we look at being autistic automatically as a dilemma? Why do we need to 'treat' these individuals, and exactly what is it that we are 'treating' and what is our definition of what 'works'? Is our objective to force an autistic to act as a typical? Is that 'treatment'? Would it be ethical for us to force assimilation on an ethnic minority? Rather, if we are to employ 'treatment' at all, it should be to help the person be able to navigate through the foreign world of the mainstream, not to try to change those things which are an intrinsic part of their being. Various programs should eliminate coercion and force and return to the need to respect the uniqueness, creativity, and individual differences present in those who are autistic.


it is interesting to note that the psychiatric profession often resorts to prescribing anti-psychotic drugs (always off label) to children under 18 who have autism. These children often have been exposed to environmental toxins which have contributed to their condition. The psychiatrist's answer is not to address the core issues but rather to introduce an additional toxin. When the child is sedated and becomes more compliant, they can claim success, however they have done nothing other than disable the brain of the child. Psychiatry can offer nothing more than a toxic 'solution'.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


I came across an article today featuring a study suggesting that 1/3 of children diagnosed with ADHD had been exposed to lead or to the effects of cigarette smoking by the mother during pregnancy. First, ADHD is not a disease in itself, but a cluster of behaviors. Second, if 1/3 of children showing this behaviors have been lead poisoned (even if at a minimal level) or impacted by cigarette smoking, that is to say, if 1/3 of children diagnosed with ADHD have been exposed to toxins, then why is it that psychiatrists choose to 'treat' these children with another toxin- psychotropic drugs?

-Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D.

Thursday, September 07, 2006


The role of bio-psychiatric intervention is to correct a supposed 'chemical imbalance' of which there is no evidence to substantiate. The mental health profession seeks to typically 'treat' the various clusters of behavior considered deviant often through coercive means. But where in any of this is the experience of individuals examined? Today's mental health professionals function as an arm of the law and of social control. What truly should be the role of a therapist?
The therapist should rather be a coach in the process of the person finding identity and examining their experiences and how their thinking shapes who they are and what they become. The therapist should be present to offer reflective dialogue to the person as to what impedes their success and happiness. The therapist is present to empower the person, not to control. Anxiety is as a result of fear but its catalyst is always a past experience. Depression is a result of despair. But where does despair originate but from past experiences. What is termed psychosis is often as Laing states "balancing between fear and loneliness'. It is a state of chronic terror also once again shaped by experiences. It is necessary then to examine the worldview of the person- What have they thought of their experiences? Where are they going and where do they want to be? We can change our worlds by changing our minds.
Distress fades as we begin to construct a path of meaning, and the therapist's role is to be a fellow soul journeying on this path, listening, reflecting.

-Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D.