I can say from experience and education, that the main aim of psychology is not to help you cope better with the world, although that is what most
psychologists/psychiatrists aim to do. The real aim, whether or not they understand this, is to assimilate you into society -- in effect, normalize
and de-abnormalize you. This will be accomplished by any means necessary, since your cognitive dissonance in 'not fitting in' acts as a potent
motivator in accepting their 'cure' whether it be via drugs, guilt, regression, hypnosis or any other means necessary.
Unfortunately, while it can make people feel more acceptable, it also removes much intuitive creativity, eccentricity, inventiveness, spontaneity and
DIFFERENCE in our society. We are supposed to feel pain, negativity, extremes of love, passion, joy and also darkness. Yes, it is HARD to deal with,
but it is the human condition. I have come to love people with character and flaws and personality since to me they are brave souls daring to be
themselves in a world that wants to make them into another shade of grey.
Now, as you said there are genuine mental illnesses (not as many as you think, or the DSMIII would have us believe). Many of these come from a
perfectly sane reaction to an INSANE world, whereby the sane reaction is labeled as insane simply because it is not ADAPTIVE. Blaming victims for
their non-adaptive behavior is an extension of this.
Take a look around, and how little it would take for you to step out of line. Sit naked on your suburban/condo patio. Decide not to wear any shoes,
ever. Put cheese-whiz in your hair. Drool a little on the bus. Refuse to sit in any chairs. Just for fun. Any of these things will get you labeled
pretty fast and most folks won't believe you that you're just playing with them -- they'll seriously think you're nuts.
And just to illustrate, a famous psychologist Erving Goffman wrote a seminal book in the 1960's, "Asylums" that spurred an enormous debate in the
profession. He took some of his perfectly sane graduate students and had them pretend to be mentally ill and get themselves admitted into psychiatric
care facilities. They were to behave perfectly themselves after they were admitted and study the medical staff. Some of them even openly took notes
and discussed their research projects with the staff. Every single student
was not only diagnosed with a major mental illness, but Dr. Goffman
had to go and personally free his students because the establishment refused to release them!
What is the lesson? From the moment they were admitted (labeled/diagnosed) EVERYTHING they did and said became 'further evidence of their
. The doctors and nurses couldn't see how normal these people really were. Be careful of labels, oftentimes what you see is the label,
not the person.
Wiki - Erving Goffman
Of course this rocked the socks off the psychiatric establishment. The NET EFFECT, despite the good intentions of individuals working in the system,
is to label, segregate, normalize via any means, and integrate folks into 'normal' society. This is seen as "healthy" for you. The presumption
being that EVERYONE wants, at some level, to be normal and accepted and if you do not then you are not adaptive
. They don't stop at the
severely mentally ill, and their are folks who need help, definitely, but their mission -- like evangelists, is to act their 'cure' upon everyone,
or else allow themselves to be used by TPTB to guilt and fear us into conformity.
Einstein often didn't tie his shoelaces and button his shirts. He was eccentric in many ways, frequently charming, sometimes brutally blunt and
anti-social. This behavior was tolerated more when he was growing up, folks didn't have modern psychology around back then, but as a young man today
he would have been pressured to 'normalize'. What would have happened, what is happening right now, to our brilliance, ingenuity and genius that
often resides outside of norms?
That is the problem with psychology today. What started out as an honest inquiry and aid into the human mind, I fear, has become a tool of oppressing