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, January 28, 2011


Presently, Egyptians are pressing to oust the government of Hosni Mubarak believing his adminsitration to be highly corrupt. What is curious is that the U.S. government invaded Iraq under false pretenses, claiming to be 'liberating' and bringing 'freedom and democracy', however in Egypt, it says and does nothing. Why would the U.S. government not want to support 'freedom and democracy' in this siutation? Because Mubarak serves our interests. This is not about freedom and democracy but all about power, greed, and control.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Advisors of the International Center for Humane Psychiatry are persons committed to the following:

Our work is to fight against oppression and coercion in the mental health system, to eradicate the hierarchical barriers between 'doctor and patient', to eliminate the medicalization of emotional distress, and to develop means of helping distressed persons where their autonomy, experience, and dignity is respected. We seek to return a conscience to the field of mental health and create an environment where people undergoing distress feel validated, empowered, and capable.

We believe in the power of the human spirit and each person's potential to be resilient. We believe that the forging of relationship is a key to emotional healing as well as the ability to help a person explore themselves, their world, society, and the human condition. We we seek to join with people in setting life goals, understanding the human condition and experiences without looking upon the person as defective. ICHP encourages involvement in issues related to social justice and believes that our working together to create a world free from poverty, greed, conflict, and discrimination will go a long way towards the development of true mental health.

We seek to be pro-active and preventative in our care for persons. We promote drug free, relationship based approaches for troubled and distressed children and adults and encourage the development and implementation of community based programs. We advocate for juvenile justice reform and for an education system that inspires a zeal for learning and is respectful of children's innate strengths and abilities. We believe in the development of community based options. We are opposed to force and coercion in the mental health system.

We seek to provide a place of sanctuary for people in crisis or undergoing extreme states of mind, where they can feel supported and validated, and not be subjected to any 'treatments' they do not desire. We believe distressed people thrive in environments that are non-threatening and they feel safe.

We collaborate with and offer consultation to parents, educators, and children and their families to develop relationship based approaches and problem solving towards resolving issues of distress, realizing that people are resilient and capable of healing from distress. We have been successful in helping individuals not have to resort to psychiatric drugs or to be able under the direction of their physicians significantly reduce their use.

We believe the key to this healing is by the forging of relationship and the construction of meaning. We believe that compassion is one of the highest ideals. We believe that psychiatric drugs do not teach new ways of living, thinking, loving, and being, whereas people do. We are particularly concerned about the vast prescribing of psychiatric drugs (many which carry warnings of suicidal ideation, violence, agitation, and aggression) upon individuals' well being. We are concerned about the unethical conflicts of interest existing between medical psychiatrists and the pharmaceutical industry.

We seek to provide to those individuals undergoing serious distress a place where they feel safe, secure, and can begin to begin the process of discovery and overcome fear and emotional chains.

We do not feel that locking individuals away in institutions solve human problems, rather it is through compassion, empathy, and seeking to understand our human condition that true mental health will arise. We believe that placing persons in mental hospitals is equivalent to incarceration however the distressed person has committed no crime, rather they are subject to a psychiatric ceremonial where the pschiatrist seen as 'sane', interrogates the person, makes a judgment, and then declares a sentence. We believe that psychiatric diagnosis often stigmatizes and limits opportunity for individuals. We believe that modern society is driving people 'mad' and that we must have radical transformation of ourselves and our values as well as return to a greater sense of community. We believe those who call themselves therapists must be actively involved in issues of social justice, helping end oppression and encourage liberation for marginalized persons. We recognize that distressed individuals must be treated as persons with respect and dignity. We believe in recognizing that even the most troubled persons and families have innate strengths. We believe that persons need to be given informed consent and not seen merely by a diagnostic label. We believe that ethics must proceed technology. We believe that bio-psychiatry has often used brutal methods (such as electroshock, insulin coma, toxic drugs, and lobotomy) and has evoked much harm in the lives of individuals and does not provide any true answers to the problems of life. We believe that there is no objectivity and science to the process of psychiatric diagnosis and that those diagnosed are often stigmatized and oppressed in society by virtue of this label.

We encourage drug free relationship based, problem solving, and holistic approaches and encourage individuals who choose to use helpful adjuncts such as meditation, acupuncture, tai-chi, and yoga. The International Center for Humane Psychiatry is one of few entities taking a strong stand on social justice issues and seeking to create a mental health system that does not treat people as objects, but persons.

We believe that it is also necessary for us to assume personal responsiblity and accountability for own own actions and choices and to not resort to the use of or embracing of labels to exonerate ourselves and institutions.

Brent Potter completed his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the Pacifica Graduate Institute. Prior to this he earned his M.A. in Psychology from Duquesne University. He lives in Bellingham, Washington where he works as a Child Mental Health Specialist, a County Designated Mental Health Professional, and a Licensed Mental Health Counselor.

Gregory Oke is a Mental Health Consumer Advocate in Australia.

Ms. Chmielewski completed her Bachelor of Arts from Pennsylvania State University on Human Development and Family Studies with concentration in Psychology. She is currently involved in a Master's program in Special Education and School Counseling at Marywood University. Ms. Chmielewski has worked in community mental health and served in a therapeutic community project under the direction of Dr. Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D.

Mr. Urquhart is a counsellor in Scotland. He was trained in person centered counselling with COSCA (Scotland) from 1995-1998. He has served in a counselling center in Paisley, The Wynd from 1997 to 1998, as well as working with an HIV charity. He is currently continuing training in cognitive behavioral therapy.

Saturday, January 22, 2011


Today, it is acceptable to authorize torture, to invade nations without cause, to take away civil liberties, to kill civilians. What will make you a 'criminal' is if you dare to expose the injustices.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


The recent events in Tunisia are a positive sign, a true grassroots effort by people who have experienced oppression to stand up for themselves and remove the corruption that has held them in a sense of bondage. I hope that this will be seen as an example for others, and that there will be other non-violent ways of demonstrating the need to create a more fair society.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Developmental Differences/ Autism

A few years back, my work mainly was with autistic and developmentally different persons but this lessened as I began helping more individuals who were going through extreme states of mind. I wrote the text, "Entering Their Imaginative World" in 2007 and began encouraging the development of drug free, relationship based approaches. Now in 2011, I am expanding my work with autism and developmental differences. In my approach with one person with Down's Syndrome, we sought to find ways to help him feel he was making a contribution, has worth, and feels fulfilled. This was accomplished by giving him particular responsibilities (according to his ability) that tied in with a particular strength and interest he has. I also worked on development of skills through real life rehearsals and active engagement. In my work with autistic children, it has always been the process of 'joining in' that has been remarkable. Many non-verbal children began to develop these skills simply through this engagement.
For more information on my autism/developmental differences work or to arrange a consultation, see the website at http://www.humanepsychiatry.com

-Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D.

Dr. Dan L. Edmunds Reflections on New Year 2011

Last year, in my book THE MEETING OF TWO PERSONS: WHAT THERAPY SHOULD BE I described the social, political, and familial processes that lead persons to emotional distress. In addition, I argued about the breakdown of community and the apathy that exists within our society today. In this new year, it is necessary for us to become more courageous, more bold, and to continue to actively challenge those forces which oppress individuals. Within the field of mental health, we need to continue to tackle the false biological concepts which stigmatize persons, turns them into helpless and hopeless persons, and which makes them numbers rather than people who create profits for the pharmaceutical industry and others who would mercilessly seek to gain from their suffering, who would make them life long 'consumers'. It is a time for self reflection as well, as the only way we can make any difference in the lives of others is to begin to see where we stand. At some point, we have all been traumatized, some to a lesser degree, and some to a enormous degree, life often appears absurd, work meaningless, and we feel we are just barely staying afloat. It is necessary for us to take moments to reflect, to create meaning and purpose, and to forge together in community. If we are to survive, it can only be done together, if we are remain divided and fragmented, the 'insanity' of the world will only continue forward. In spite of the challenge, we press on, and we retain hope, and we press on with a spirit of defiance, that nothing will bring us down, nothing will stop us, and though the odds may be against us at times, our victory will always remain in knowing that we were persons of ethics and compassion.

-Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D.