posted on Jul, 21 2010 @ 12:53 AM
While I don't personally agree with banning those with avowed psychoses or delusions, I do think that we as a community have a responsibility to
rationally (and with an open mind, by the way) urge those who may be psychotic or delusional to at least consider seeking professional mental
The problem, in my opinion and experience at least, is that delusions are often ingrained in personal beliefs, principles, and ethics. People are
extremely protective of their beliefs, principles, and ethics - as well they should be, in the absence of any obvious mental issues. Unfortunately,
since people view their principles and beliefs as simply being "who they are," they are often unwilling or unable to perceive them objectively as
being even potentially delusional or psychotic.
People often come to feel as though they have special insight, wisdom, or knowledge from... somewhere. Or something. Knowledge or insight which
justifies actions, (or inaction,) thoughts, and feelings on their part which would otherwise, at least potentially, be irrational, unhealthy, or in a
worst case scenario, harmful to others or themselves. People want to feel special, or as though they are a part of something greater than themselves.
In the quest to satisfy that need, people can sometimes mistake delusional thinking and perceptions for "special knowledge." And because they simply
feel that this "specialness" is either inherent to who they are, or the result of a real experience, they cannot or will not even entertain the
possibility that they are delusional.
Don't mistake my meaning. While I'm a skeptical person, I'm also extremely open minded. In the absence of proof, I would never call someone
delusional for claiming to have had a fantastic or profoundly transformative experience - or even for claiming that that experience or some facet of
their nature gives them access to insight or knowledge that others lack. I am absolutely open to the possibility. I just feel we have a
responsibility to likewise urge those who feel that to be the case to at least seriously consider the equally valid possibility that
their mental health might be in question. If the truth is their goal, then that is a possibility that must be considered. If they resist considering
it at all, or become paranoid toward the person suggesting the possibility, then to me that further suggests the possibility of some sort of mental
I am not saying this as an outside observer looking in. While I have never been psychotic or, strictly speaking, delusional, I do suffer from clinical
depression and social anxiety disorder, and years ago, in my isolation and misery, I was on what I would call "the edge" of entertaining those types
of thoughts. It had more to do with naivete on my part due to isolation and negative thinking produced by depression than anything else, but I have
experienced "the edge" of paranoia, and immediately sought help (which is how I discovered I was depressed and socially anxious as well.) That was
years ago, and much to my great relief, I have not suffered such paranoiac thinking again, as a direct result of the therapy and treatment I received,
and continue to receive.
I only share my experience, as admittedly embarrassing as it may be (though it shouldn't be; there is no shame in having psychological issues,)
because I'm hoping people reading this will consider that psychologists and psychiatrists are not the controlling, societal-standard-enforcing
"quacks" many seem to fear they are. I'm sure there are some poor mental health professionals who might meet the definition of those
criteria, but in my experience they are just people who want to help you if you'll let them.
Fortunately, I wasn't truly delusional. I just suffered from depression and social anxiety (and still do technically.) I have a long way to go before
I will be comfortable in public, social situations, but I feel a lot healthier, happier, more fulfilled, and much less hopeless and paranoid feeling
than I once did. My point is this: if I hadn't considered the possibility, I wouldn't have gotten help. And there are people much, much worse
off mentally than I was. There are people who are truly psychotic, and don't know it.
Delusions and psychoses exist. Unlike many of the phenomena we discuss here (while I do believe in some of them, and am at least open minded about all
of them,) we can categorically, empirically assert that they are real. They are, in essence, a conspiracy against you, by you. That's why they
are so insidious. They should not be dismissed, and we have, I feel, a responsibility to stress the possibility of their influence on our
membership's wellbeing to at least as great an extent as we do more exotic phenomena.
Just my two cents. I respect everyone's opinions.
[edit on 7/21/2010 by AceWombat04]