Here is a moving exerpt from NHS Blog Doctor‘s weekly casebook:
“I had the St John’s Wort/cow dung conversation today. Again. A rather sad woman who is not coping at work. She is not clinically depressed. She has a rotten boss, an indifferent husband and a very difficult teenage daughter. (Are any teenage daughters not difficult?).
But I am “not a tablet person, doctor” she says. She has been taking St John’s Wart to try to help. St John’s Wort comes as tablets.
“Ah yes, but they are natural” she says.
“Like cow dung and deadly nightshade?” I ask.
She does not get it. They never do. So we chat. And I ask her about her husband and she starts crying. He is having an affair. She knows. He does not know she knows.
She is lonely. Surrounded by people but lonely. This sort of loneliness is even worse than the loneliness experienced by people who are alone. Is it a medical problem? I don’t know. I would like to phone the vicar really, but she does not “do” vicars.
I suggest that she goes to Relate. She would. Gladly. But he would not.
I have nothing to give her but a little time, and not enough of that.”
This particular case stuck out starkly to me as a poignant reminder of how few effective resources are currently available to a GP faced with someone who is clearly not getting their emotional needs fulfilled and is in need of support to get them met – and I thank NHS Blog Doctor for this much needed inside view.
Posted by: Eleanor
– The health protection agency has release a report stating that 80% of survivors of the London bombings of July 7th last year have been left with with “emotional upset”. 80% of these were referred to counsellors and specialised post traumatic stress disorder services. Read what Joe Griffin has to say about treatments for post traumatic stress disorder here.
– I would also like to draw your attention to an interesting article I put up on the archive section of our HGI website yesterday from a 1996 edition of The Therapist (renamed the Human Givens Journal) called The Trickster: medicine’s forgotten character:
“In modern psychology ‘Trickster’ is often used to refer to a universal force or pattern within the mind — what Jung called an archetype — that represents the irrational, chaotic, and unpredictable side of human thought and behaviour. This aspect of the mind is contrasted with the logical, analytical, and intellectual side that values order, precision, and control. According to the tenets of depth psychology, a balance between these two vectors of the psyche is required for optimal mental heath. When either the rational or irrational side dominates, self correcting forces come into play to restore some semblance of harmony between the two. The countless Trickster tales describe how this process plays itself out in everyday life…” click to read article
– Further to our post yesterday, I also wanted to add that the Human Givens Institute wholeheartedly supports the Tom ap Rhys Pryce Memorial Trust, which is raising money to help provide disadvantaged individuals with appropriate educational facilities to enable them to lead lives in which the “kicks” of criminal activity will not be required to fulfil emotional needs.
Posted by: Eleanor
Posted in Anxiety, Counselling, Counsellors, Emotional needs, Gangs, Government, Human Givens, Joe Griffin, Media, Mind and Body, Neuroscience, New Labour, News, Psychology, Psychotherapist, PTSD, Research, Resources, The UK Today, Young Offenders
The crucial question of “how should street crime be tackled?” has risen again after the sentencing of those responsible for killing the young London lawyer Thomas Rhys Pryce. Donnel Carty (aged 19) and Delano Brown (aged 18) robbed Pryce of his mobile phone before stabbing him in the heart.
It’s very interesting to read on the BBC message boards and Have Your Say page that public opinion seem to support the “hang ’em” solution (implying that these “scum” are lost causes, naturally doomed to forever commit crimes until the Justice System is well enough equipped to discipline and imprison them effectively) rather than taking the more optimistic view that many young people today are bored and turning to crime only in order to fill a void created by the unhealthy environment around them.
The fact which really needs to be addressed is that everyone is born with innate emotional needs that have to be fulfilled in the world if we are to flourish and be mentally healthy. (Psychologists call these needs ‘human givens’ because they are programmed into us from our genes.) If families, schools and society generally prevent children from getting their innate needs met in balanced and productive ways, we are, in effect, stopping them maturing well by stunting their mental and emotional life.
The rising levels of violent crime occurs as young people try to meet their innate needs, which nature is driving them to do, by turning to gangs and criminal activity because nothing else more wholesome is on offer. Delinquent behaviour follows on from a natural effort to fulfil these needs; such as for status, control, being stretched, feeling that life is meaningful and being part of a community. Crime is a destructive path to follow, but it does fulfil many of these emotional needs for these deprived youngsters.
People don’t come into the world as criminals but much of the culture in the UK at the moment provides the perfect conditions for generating mental illness and raising children to be violent and antisocial. It is our society that is creating young criminals like Carty and Brown.
It will require drastic measures to create a more healthy society and, until there is a deeper understanding of the importance of this backed up by the political will to do something about it, these problems and the tragedies that follow from them will only get worse.
Posted by: Eleanor
Posted in Aggression, Alcohol, Binge drinking, Crime, Emotional needs, Fear, Gangs, Government, Human Givens, Media, New Labour, News, Politics, The UK Today, Tony Blair, Young Offenders