Page for older comments

Hello Everyone!

I am using this page to help me solve a problem I have had — that the number of comments on my website’s welcome page were making my website so slow to open!  So I am moving all comments older than a few months old here.  It’s probably not the best solution, but it’s better than avoiding the problem, which I have been for too long!

Warm greetings to everyone who’s reading this!!


708 thoughts on “Page for older comments

  1. Hi Daniel, thank you for your work. I wonder if you have produced anything regarding professional oppression (or workplace bullying) in mental healthcare, be it video or article?
    Also, I wonder what is your thoughts on advocacy on non-diagnostic approach. How do we go about this as professional in a biomedically-oriented workplace?
    Would you please create video/article on these? Thank you for considering!

    • Jan,
      Hmm, I can’t think that I created anything specifically on that subject, though I did make a video on dealing with jerks…which sort of encompasses the issue…
      Wishing you the best, and thanks for the ideas!

      • Hola Daniel, hace tiempo te escribí porque vi el documental “Curando en casa”…leí que tenías información sobre enfoque parecido en Argentina o información al respecto…mi hijo ahora está en Argentina, en una clínica psiquiátrica y te agradecería si me pudieras mandar información de ese otro enfoque…Mi hijo ha pasado un año en Argentina intentando dejar la medicación y ha recaído, por eso ahora está en la clínica, muy medicado y yo en España desesperada…agradecería qualquier ayuda…gracias!

  2. Hello Daniel,
    Johnny Frem Dixon here.
    I’m a 65-year-old writer who dropped out of college 48 years ago because, away from home and the identity I’d thought was my own, I was suddenly aware of how little I wanted to become the person my parents thought would be “nice.” At the same time I had some enlightening insights into so much of the bullshit that we think is real. These insights were so shocking. An analogy would be to compare it to realizing that there is no Santa Claus. Unfortunately the rest of the world insisted and want to keep insisting that Santa Claus was real. I spent four years thinking I was crazy. After suicide attempts, a year of hospitalization, and three more years of short-order cooking while continuing to have delusions of grandeur, paranoia, and hallucinations, I stumbled upon a retreat on an island in the Pacific Northwest. The approach there reminds me a lot of what the Finns in Western Lapland call open dialogue. I’ve been working and productive ever since. I’ve had my own cooking business, worked as a carpenter, contracted painting and drywall, and spent twenty years as a roofing contractor.
    Now I’ve returned to college and am now in my third year of a B.F.A. in Creative Writing. I’m nearly finished a long memoir of those four years of finding my way back to “sanity.” I would very much like to communicate with you–by email, phone, Zoom video or whatever else might occur to you.
    P.S. I’m a musician and playwright and a rooftop circus clown as well.

      • Hi Christine B.,
        I am pleased to have any response, but it is Daniel Mackler, with whom I’m interested in talking. Any possibility of showing him my previous email.


        Johnny Frem Dixon

    • Hello Johnny Frem Dixon.
      Can you tell me the name of the Pacific Northwest island retreat you attended. I have a 28 year-old son diagnosed bipolar 1 approximately 5 years ago. We have been searching and trying alternative methods other than medication for him, but he can’t seem to get stable enough to deal with life and participate in some type of recovery. Won’t stay on meds, which we get, and goes off cold turkey. Then of course he is right back in mania/psychosis and in the hospital. We have tried helping him taper off, but he has no patience. We found Will Halls website where I found, bought and read Daniel Mackler’s book-A Way Out of Madness. My son refuses or (maybe can’t) read anything on bipolar to help himself recover. He chooses to self medicate with marijuana, which never helps in the long run.
      My husband I feel like our son needs to go to rehab or retreat that specifically deals with mental health, as we have tried to keep him safe at home but he walks away on foot When in mania and gets himself picked up by the police and eventually is in the hospital. So, if you could please tell me the name of the retreat, I would appreciate it, and I would love to research it.
      Thank you,
      Gabriella Paschall{

      • Please call me on my cell. 604-254-0355
        Also check out
        regarding an upcoming livestream event of several supposedly crazy people telling stories onstage here on Vancouver Island of their experiences.
        The name of the retreat WAS Cold Mountain Institute on Cortez Island, that retreat is now called Hollyhock. However the program that helped me has moved and it is now held regularly at a place called “Haven-by-the-sea” on Gabriola Island, BC
        Johnny Frem

      • Hello Gabriella, I am not sure you received notice of my reply to you. Yes, I would love to talk to you (and to your son, if you’d like.) The retreat I went to was called Cold Mountain Institute for Learning. It was located on Cortez Island and was not specifically dedicated to healing of mental health issues. That, in fact, had a lot to do with its success. It was simply a place where a 3-month gathering of humans go together to take workshops on a number of subjects, ranging from yoga to anger management to massage to dream therapy to self-hypnosis to psychic healing to gestalt therapy to tarot reading to re-birthing — a whole range of explorations into what was then known as the human potential movement. Cold Mountain Institute had begun operations about four years before I arrived there. It continued to operate for about another seven (?) years. Then as the founder had died and his wife no longer wanted to continue (that’s an over-simplified explanation) she sold the property and it continues as a retreat, but with not nearly the same types of workshops. It is known as Hollyhock Farm now. The people who operated the 3-month residency program in which I was involved in moved their program to Gabriola Island. That retreat is called Haven-by-the-Sea. My daughter recently received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology. For a graduation present I bought her the one-week introductory course there called “Come Alive.” I suggest your son would benefit tremendously from that too.
        I believe that many different principles working together are the reasons Cold Mountain worked so well for me (and my brother as well, who was having his own problems of a different nature at that time in 1976.) Cold Mountain was, and always had been, drug-and-alcohol-free. Haven-by-the-Sea is that way as well. Both are on Gulf Islands far from any large city. People go there to look at themselves. They are there to explore new ways of seeing their lives. They are curious, loving, nurturing, and caring. That spirit is encouraged. We were encouraged not to be judgmental and to accept people honesty and openness as an effort to be helped by each other, rather than as a way to cure or label or look down on each other from any place of superiority.
        We just wanted to grow and help each other grow. I had some pretty wild ideas about what was going on in my life. I was paranoid and thought the TV was talking to me. Or perhaps aliens had taken over the world. Or that my thoughts were broadcast by radio-waves into my brain through the fillings in my teeth. Most of my theories were pretty far-fetched. They were just the frantic effects of a kid lost and trying to find some way of explaining the sudden changes in identity I’d experienced on leaving the safe world of my home town to go off to first-year college. I hadn’t spoken to many people. At least not people who weren’t just judging me and analyzing me and trying to cure me or put me on medications that kept me tranquilized. I had eventually managed to cope and fake normal. I held steady jobs as a short-order cook and even as a sous-chef in a hotel. Meanwhile my interior thoughts were always all over the map.
        Cold Mountain allowed me a place to open up. And you know what. Craziness actually has some merits. Some of my thoughts were not that unusual. No, nobody can really read my mind — not my word-by-word, thought-by-thought, image-by-image private thoughts, but sometimes people do inexplicably “know” in a general sense what’s on my mind. And perhaps we are all connected to a collective unconscious. I learned at Cold Mountain that perhaps some aspects of my wild theorizing were perhaps a little bit possible, though probably not verifiable.
        My point is this: I’d never felt able to talk about it without being judged. I had seldom been listened to as simply another human being with a valid opinion. About a month and a half into the 3-month residency program, we had an event called Fantasy Day. Each of the 26 residents had an opportunity to act out a fantasy. We helped each other to realize those fantasies. One woman, who was working on a degree toward becoming a counselor, had a fantasy of handing out psychiatric advice, much like Lucy in the “Peanuts” comic strip. She set up a booth along one of the wood-side trails: “Psychiatric Help, 5 cents!”
        My fantasy was to be a guru. I set up a throne of pillows in the dining room and put up posters around the retreat: “Guru Om Dixon gives a speech in the main lodge, The Seven Myths of Life.” To a crowd of twenty or more listeners I gave a long lecture explaining many of my wild theories. By that point in the program I had already had discussions well into the late hours of many evenings after our day-long workshops. I had sifted through all of these ideas and come up with seven nuggets of truth. After my speech I got feed back from one of the workshop leaders, someone who I looked up to almost like a guru. “You know,” he said, “I have to agree with almost everything you said. Six of your seven myths, are probably myths, that people like to hold onto. The only one I’d disagree with is your seventh myth, the myth of free will. I don’t think it’s myth. You do have free will.
        Well I’ve had to accept that I do have agency in my life. I’ve had forty years of great health since then.
        Before I left Cold Mountain a month and a half later, Bennett Wong, one of the co-leaders of our program, sat peacefully in the center of the Raven, one our group workshop spaces before all of us, with an individual goodbye for each of us. Ben was near tears as he explained that he was so happy to have been able to witness my recovery and return to a state of critical thinking. He said he had seen many other troubled youth find their way back, but it would not be simple to hold onto my health. He worried that I might relapse. So many others had. Then Ben cried. “Please, take care of yourself, John. Get 8 hours sleep every night. Eat a healthy diet. Get plenty of exercise. Keep mentally active. Exercise your spirit too. I love you.”
        I’ve never missed a night’s sleep since then. I seldom drink and when I do it’s only one drink as a social convention, a toast perhaps as a celebration. I don’t smoke. I did smoke pot for quite a while, but I honestly don’t think it is much good at all for much of anything and I don’t smoke it at all anymore. I’m much more creative and ambitious without it.
        I don’t take any medication and haven’t taken any since Cold Mountain. I could never say what is good for someone else. Perhaps mood and anxiety disorders can be helped. But not delusions. Delusions are self-delusions. They often stem from stress, lack of sleep and unhealthy living habits. They are faulty reasoning, leaps of logic. It seems obvious to me that a drug cannot make me think differently. But I have free will. I can will myself to think critically.
        Okay, Gabriella, I hope some of what I’ve written here can be of some help to your son. He can email me. Or you can. My email is: johnny4em@gmail

    • Hi Johnny Frem,
      I’m hoping you heard from Daniel directly already, but I just wanted to thank you for sharing your powerful story, and being so encouraging of others. You’ve put out a lot. I know I’m not Daniel, but wanted to join in with Christine to give some back.
      Peace and gratitude,

  3. Hey Daniel,

    My name is Daniel as well and I stumbled upon your video relating to sociopath on YouTube. The way I ended up here is from a long toad of counseling and after my ex and I had a mast split where I ended up going to court. I don’t feel that comfortable sharing here because I’m not proud of my past and it bugs me for what I did and capable of. Anyway. My ex called me a narcissist and my counselor told me that o have sociopathic tendencies. Ive been in counseling for about two years and also attending church and AA. I don’t feel like I’m getting to the root of my problem. More of just a mask to wear. I do struggle with discipline but I am learning and watching my mouth and thoughts and no I don’t get the thoughts of hurting people like people believe. I’m stuck living with my parents at almost 30 and have a daughter. I only read things about staying away from sociopaths and nothing towards helping sociopaths heal. Any input or direction that you can help me with? I don’t want to wear the mask of religion and not get to the root of all my issues.

    • First step in addressing issues is acknowledging them 🙂 others can help you see and outsider perspective but in the end you gotta look within and deal with the things only you can.

      While it is important in taking responsibility in anyone you hurt the best thing is to improve your actions for today.
      Maybe the best thing is not to over think the sociopath issue rather look at the things that make you act how you do trauma, patterns of behaviour etc

  4. Hi Daniel – I really enjoy your content and your perspectives. I was wondering if you could answer a general question here, or via video. This could apply to many people. I am considering being a therapist and I have even been accepted into graduate schools. It is hard to make a decision as I am concerned about the “vicarious traumatization” that may occur, as you have described. If I already have these concerns, is it worth it to pursue this route?

    • i don’t have an answer but i am having the same thoughts, having just started a counselling skills course. at my age, do i really want to get into this line of helping? And yet I’ve not be extending myself for some years so this maybe where the growth is for me.

      • Come on Rich, Mark.
        I believe that you can both be helpful as counsellors to others, simply by being curious to hear what others have to say about their lives and by being fellow humans on life’s journey. If you have similar experiences to tell your fellow humans, then they might not feel so all alone, and thereby be inspired to open up, sort things out, and enjoy this journey.

        Johnny Frem Dixon

      • If that’s how you feel guys, why not focus on a trauma centered route to counseling. Focus on EMDR, EFT, TAT. There’s a lot of work being doing on trauma and regression techniques not just for what we view as PTsD but also childhood trauma!

  5. Hello Daniel,

    I want to say a big thank you for sharing your healing process with the world. I struggle with depression as a result of psychological abuse, and three things have helped me in my process of self-therapy: psychotherapy, journaling, and your videos. (Psychiatric drugs only made me worse! Ha.) Without your content, I honestly wouldn’t have made it this far.

    I aspire to become a psychotherapist, but am concerned that I might not be able to sufficiently heal my traumas before helping others. Do you have any advice for wounded healers? Thank you once again, and may you have a great day.

  6. Hello Daniel,

    I want to say a big thank you for sharing your healing process with the world. I struggle with depression as a result of psychological abuse, and three things have helped me in my process of self-therapy: psychotherapy, journalling, and your videos. (Psychiatric drugs only made me worse! Ha.) Without your content, I honestly wouldn’t have made it this far.

    I aspire to become a psychotherapist, but am concerned that I might not be able to sufficiently heal my traumas before helping others. Do you have any advice for wounded healers? Thank you once again, and may you have a great day.

  7. Hey Daniel,

    I really appreciate all the time and energy you put into your videos. I find them very useful! I’m planning to become a therapist and I found your videos on the mental health field quite enlightening. I’ve been really feeling a hesitance to journal for quite some time, but I have finally committed to it due to your discussions about it.

    One thing that I keep stumbling upon over and over again is the concept of “playful” insults. It’s something that’s been weighing on my mind for quite some time. I partially understand the appeal of it, but ultimately I don’t really get it. These “playful” insults often (at least at some point) hurt other people. And I would guess that oftentimes it’s unknown when it does. What’re your thoughts on the matter? I keep questioning myself because of the number of people that think this “playful” banter is both fun and fine.

    Thanks again for being so open on your channel. I wish you well during this time of quarantine.

    • Hi Eli,
      Thanks for your message., Playful insults, I’ll have to think about that. Maybe I can make a video about it in the future too. I actually have a video about humor that I already filmed and edited, and I’m planning to release it in a couple of months. Perhaps it actually already addresses the subject you’re talking about, at least to a degree! Meanwhile, warm greetings, Daniel

      • I saw this in the Marine Corps, and then my first boss in the civilian sector did this blatantly. I thought it was funny and amusing at first. The more I matured, the more I found it to be passive aggressive.

  8. Dear Daniel, can you please talk on your youtube channel about the topic of ambivalence?
    -How important (if at all) is ambivalence?
    -Is it possible to develop this trait later in life?
    -any other thoughts you have on the topic

    • Hi Jessie, that sounds like a good topic! I’ll keep it in mind when I make my next round of videos. Warm greetings, Daniel

  9. Hi Daniel-

    I came across your YouTube channel and was immediately drawn to your videos. All I can say is WOW! Watching them has been extremely eye-opening for me and quite relieving to hear honestly. The first video I came across was: 8 reasons I quit being a therapist. (I originally was looking at MFT program reviews). I can 100% see why you made the decision to stop. I have always worked in the helping profession and it for sure can be draining. This led me to your channel and right away I was hooked. Something that really caught my eye was your video: Breaking from your parents. I also am about to order the book!

    I am a 27 year old female and have suffered from anxiety and depression for as long as I can remember. I feel the root of this is from childhood psychological trauma and being raised in a very controlling, religious household. Aka colt. Not only were my four siblings and I forced to follow a strict Mormon lifestyle, but my mother can be a very manipulative, controlling, and I believe mentally unstable parent. My father just sits quiet by her side. I am not sure if you are familiar with the Mormon religion but there is quite a bit of pressure from your family, the church, and Mormon community that my parents raised me around to live up to their standards in order to be accepted, trusted, apart of the family, etc. If not, you are pretty much forgotten, shamed, and shunned. My dear younger sister recently came out to my parents and she did not get the reaction she was hoping for. Well..we kind of knew where my mom stood on this but of course my sister was just looking for acceptance as most children do. Side note- The Mormon church is not supportive of LGBTQ and my sister has had the most horrifying experience dealing with this at a BYU college. After my sister came out to my mother, my mother wrote a letter to her stating “How could you do this to our family! This will be so embarrassing to tell your Grandma, other relatives, etc.” After hearing this I immediately was sick to my stomach and felt an incredible amount of anger towards my mother. Like really?! How could you turn people away like that (your own daughter!) and be so prejudice, judgmental, and just hurtful towards someone. And she claims to be a true follower of Christ. My siblings and I have wasted enough energy trying to get her to accept my sister but she continues to be close-minded and tell her how it’s Satan trying to control her. It is exhausting looking for my mom’s acceptance and I’m finally realizing that my siblings and I will never be good enough for her unless we live the Mormon way. Conditional love, not unconditional. My sister has been in counseling for some time now and is still suffering. I feel really sad for people in the world who don’t realize what they are doing to others, even after you try to explain it to them. I understand that my mother may have had an abusive childhood herself but that does not give any one parent the right to take it out on your children, especially after 16 years. How is it not obvious to people by now that life is about love, service, friendship, acceptance, individuality, respecting one another, and so much more! People would actually be able to grow and live life to the fullest, love and be loved, live in a community free of fear and just be who you really are.

    It started about middle school for me when my relationship with my mother really went down hill, when I started to become my own person and make my own decisions. I have also always been a very free spirited, independent, curious, driven individual and this was the opposite of the molds my mother was trying to make of her children. I have gone in waves of trying to forgive my mother and look for acceptance for over 10 years now but then I question myself why? Every time I visit her and talk with her over the phone to this day, it’s nothing but tears, extreme anxiety (even panic attacks), hurt, and resentment. She will constantly bring up that Anxiety / Depression runs in my dad and her family and I need to see a doctor and get on medication (She is a full-time nurse by the way). She also will say things like, “you’re having a hard time because you strayed away from the church.” My mother has never approved of my not Mormon lifestyle, therefore I am living my life in sin. My mother pretty much shunning me since middle school for not wanting to be apart of her colt has led me to put up a huge brick wall between me and her.
    So yes this is where I stand with my mother right now. I’m exhausted looking for acceptance in her. I am not sure if I can forgive her. Obviously there was a lot more psychological trauma than what I am writing you..but I have never related to something so much until I came across: Breaking away from your parents.

    I am so relieved to have found your YouTube channel. Thank you for helping me heal.

    • Dear Jacie,
      Thank you for sharing this! Painful to read, but important for people to see. I actually have had quite a lot of experiences with Mormons in my life, for starters growing up in western New York state somewhat near Palmyra. But also in my travels I did a few film screenings of a couple of my films and I spent a good amount of time with quite a few Mormon folks, some of whom actually were “Jack Mormons,” I guess they are called. I myself am not religious, but certainly when I hear about some of the exclusionary practices of Mormons and other religious folks I am deeply troubled. I am wishing you all the best! Daniel

  10. Hi Daniel,

    Your videos have helped me so much, I can’t begin to describe. I’ve been sober for 3 years and have learned so much in that time. I came from an alcoholic and codependent family. I am the only one that looks honestly at this truth. I have 3 younger brothers and they are all in denial. They actually identify as white-nationalists.

    My question to you is, will you ever have a relationship with your parents? I realize you may not get what you want out of them, total honesty and understanding. But can’t they have some sympathy for you or at least some regret for how they treated you?

    I am very conflicted in how to deal with my parents. My father was a vile racist and so arrogant, never expressed love. But deep down extremely insecure – he’s an uneducated railroad worker from Beaumont, Texas. He’ll never apologize and see how much pain he’s caused or take any responsibility. But his frailty and weakness is so obvious – he plays the ‘nice guy’ like he’s perfectly innocent. But he has taken a more gentle tone as he gets older and i have some sympathy for him because he’s so pathetic. He’s also very supportive of me in a distant kind of way. I went to court to legally change my name. A part of me is disgusted by him and feels liberated by cutting him out of my life like a cancerous tumor. On the other hand, I see that he is basically at an adolescent stage of development and he looks up to me. I am very educated and worldly. My parents weren’t monsters, they were just deeply troubled authoritarians in a toxic relationship. It would hurt my father for me to cut him out completely – I don’t know if i can do that. Is there a mathematical equation that can help me figure this out?

  11. Hi Daniel, do you think it is still possible to heal from schizophrenia, when the initial episode coincided with (i.e. appears to be catalyzed by) drug abuse? Thank you for your message of hope, and take care.

      • Hi Val! Someone with personal experience in this – yes it’s very much possible. Unfortunately there’s not much on the mainstream trauma literature in terms of a solid connection, however there are many many many cases of people with the same story as yours, from dissociation to bipolar disorder and a schziophrenia being the more severe crises. The few trauma specialists who have seen the connections say the same thing I’ve always thought – these drugs serve as a ego barrier dropper and/ or activate very early traumas and serve as a catalyst from triggering these old wounds and awakening these traumas very quickly. It’s very painful. There’s a book called rethinking madness that talks a bit about these ideas, same with the two trigger delayed ptsd mechanism that dr Clancy McKenzie that’s about in his model. When you say schizophrenia what is the symptomatology you talk about specifically in your case if you don’t mind me asking?

        • Thank you Daniel and Sergio for your encouraging responses. Sergio, I am not sure I understand the question, but mostly I had delusional thinking about my family, believing I could heal my family members, and also beliefs about synchronicities that I experienced which still scare me. I was prescribed amphetamine salts beginning in November, and towards the end of January I began to experience a “spiritual awakening” that culminated in a car crash in early March. Now I am on the Invega shot (Paliperidone) and I am experiencing a lot of difficult with focus and concentration, and spiraling thoughts. I have difficulty reading and worry I cannot learn much. I don’t know what is the drug and what is me. Thank you again for your interest and for sharing your research and knowledge.

      • Hi Daniel, I just wanted to thank you for your posts over the years! …. they have been eye opening, both brave and bold, but also l comforting as I could relate to your story with my own painful journey of looking at the devastation of my past and leaving my parents behind. X

  12. Hey Daniel,

    I’ve been watching your videos for a couple of years now and have been incredibly inspired by your work. I’m currently enrolled in a counseling program at the Institute for Clinical Social Work in Chicago. I’m interning at a CMHC called the Kedzie Center which is a clinic funded through property taxes and is able to provide mental health services for free for folks in the neighborhood. At the clinic, one of our psychiatrists is Dr. Charles Turk. He works closely with GIFRIC and the 388, a psychoanalytic treatment center for psychotic youth in Quebec City. I have some experience in making videos and proposed to Dr. Turk that we make a documentary about the practices at the 388, citing your work for reference. He was familiar with your work and said that you had even met once. So, I want to ask… What are your thoughts on the 388, if you are aware of it? And, would you ever consider making a documentary about it?

    Thanks so much, hope all is well,

    • Hi Sarah,
      Greetings! I actually wanted to film Le 388 ten years ago but they said it was a bad time for them — I think financial and maybe political problems. I was in touch with Danielle Bergeron and I believe Willy appalon. From all I gather their work is excellent. Meanwhile, please pass on a hello to Charles Turk from me- I admire him! Yes, I remember well when we met! Meanwhile, I’m not sure about making any more films for me. Maybe someday! My life is off on its own odd trajectory. All the best to you! Daniel

  13. Hi Daniel
    I’ve been wondering what your thoughts are on childhood trauma as a factor in addiction. I’m especially interested in alcoholism though I guess the pattern might be quite universal as far as most addictions go. How about a video on that? 🙂 I’d be greatly interested and appreciative.

        • I also viewed some of the interview on Brand’s podcast. Mate’s penetrating insights are so refreshing, if brutal at times

        • Russall Brand is a ‘Stepper’ who promotes the insidious and disempowering ‘disease’ dogma of addiction. This has led millions to a form of learn helplessness (‘powerlessness’ in 12 cult speak) and a reliance on outside ‘miracle’ mubbo jumbo (‘Higher Power’).

          For scientific, evidence based alternatives look to;

          The Freedom Model
          SMART Recovery (REBT based).

          Addiction is a form of compulsion not a disease. It is learnt behaviour (see Marc Lewis).

          Compulsions are symptoms of underlying issues that need to be addresses – often (childhood) Trauma (CPTSD). Gabor Mate is excellent on the link between trauma and compulsive behaviour (addiction).

        • If you want an amazing example of Gabor and his adult son Daniel trying to work through family dynamics, watch:
          Dr. Gabor Maté & Daniel Maté: “Hello Again: A Fresh Start for Parents and Their Adult Children” on youtube.
          I am not suggesting this in opposition to Daniel Mackler’s work, but to show that if family members do the work individually then collaboratively in the family (often with help and I don’t advocate any one modality but foundational respect and trust) there is the possibility of meeting each other where they are at which in turn holds the potential for functional and well relationships. It is not easy and takes dedication and effort but with willing, grounded and loving family members the possibility exists.
          That being said, in many families such fruitful, mutually validating relationships simply cannot take place because of one or many incapable members. And really that means that grieving is necessary, but that doesn’t mean that one cannot find healthful validation among others (and we should nonetheless).
          The video is an eye opener and cuts tot he heart of family dysfunction and toxic patterns, even among members who claim to be ‘enlightened’. It is simply amazing to see in real time how, whatever our degree of awareness and presence, that wellness truly demands our vigilance and utmost dedication.

          • Yes Mark! I viewed “Hello Again” and then later “again” So refreshing to observe the prestigious “enlightened” author-lecturer, Gabor Mate, being put in his place by his insightful, “vigilant” son . . . and taking it!

    • The institute of Peak states works on addiction through trauma and uses trauma techniques – what people call power therapies (Emdr, etc) to help people heal from the underlying causes for the need of symptomology. I urge you to look at the it’d if you want deeper insight

  14. UNHEALED “Early Childhood Trauma” (neurosis) is the main cause of most socalled “disorders” / “diseases”.
    “Neurose ist heilbar” (neurosis is healable) wrote Prof. H. J. Eysenck.
    The problem is, that most people affected by neurosis don’t know / realize it.
    (Collective) Neurosis is the “Disease of Society” and will cause doom of civilized society in case of (further) inactivity for basical healing.

    • Agreed Wolfgang—however, as I observe, reflect, and have written about “mental illness”, sadly, I have come to the conclusion that it is not so much that individuals “don’t know” but it is actually that they don’t WANT to know.
      T.S. Eliot’s insight comes to mind: “Human kind cannot bear very much reality.”

  15. Daniel,

    Will you not respond to my previous post?

    I thought you were not afraid to butt heads with the system. Will you too, let it of the hook so easily? If so, then maybe you are not so progressive as you’d like to think yourself to be. Capitalist system that no one dares to question produces anxiety and depression on a mass scale and it leaves people deeply traumatized, it’s inherently exploitative and demeaning, it’s dehumanizing and alienating. Everything is commodified, and has no value other than the market value, is this the world you want to live in, how does that fit into your mental health ideas for the future? What’s good for capitalism isn’t synonymous with what’s ethical or right.

    Can we really be healthy living in this sick system?

    Has capitalism nothing to do with poor mental health worldwide?

    I ask you kindly,
    It is up to you to show if you truly have heart and integrity.
    SPEAK UP – make a vid

    Denis H.

    I found a video of you being a guest at Kresimir Misak’s – “At the Edge of Science”, you said a lot of good things there. My mom likes you too.

        • His was a fascinating life. Chosen and groomed to be the spiritual leader, he revealed (both consciously and unconsciously) how spurious the notion of guru and contemporary, classists, bourgeois materialism are.
          Noam Chomsky, Arundhati Roy, Chris Hedges, Naomi Klein, Gabor Mate, there are those integrated teachers who are truly working for equity (poverty and competition are the sources of toxic patterns) and wellness.

  16. Hi there Daniel,

    Is psychotherapy nonsense ?

    What evidence is it that it even heals trauma ?
    What evidence does it increase self awareness?

    I’ve read something about its positive effects on depression (a paper by schelling). I’m jobless at the moment, without many friends or a girlfriend. Kind of confused with life, hoping psychotherapy will be the answer.

    I’ve started psychotherapy with a counselling psychologist and I like her to be honest. However I feel she charges a bit much, and I’ve got some slight romantic attraction to her already (second session in).

    • Hi Megasuperman —
      well, I think if the therapist is really good and the client feels a good connection with the therapist then there can be real healing value in it. if not…then…probably the therapy won’t be so helpful…maybe even harmful. that’s been my experience at least!!
      wishing you the best,

      • Hi Daniel! I love your content and would love to have a conversation with you. My channel on YouTube is out there for those struggling with invisible chronic illnesses, one of them being fibromyalgia now, although there isn’t cause set in stone, many doctors believe that childhood trauma brings it on and honestly, it makes a lot of sense to me, as so many have had childhood trauma in one way or another, so with that being said I would be honored to connect with you. I believe it could help SO many. I would be absolutely thrilled if we could set something up, thanks for your time. -Ev

        • Hi Evie and Daniel , it is well known that childhood trauma affects health across a lifetime.
          Just watch the TED Talķ of nadine-burk- harris and you will be convinced .

    • Hi Megasuperman,

      Wish you all the best in your journey of healing.

      Developing feelings towards ones therapist is common it even has a term “erotic transference”

      Perhaps you should tell your therapist about this, supposedly therapists know how to address it in a healthy manner.

      • Hi All,
        Since I have been thinking about what my my own “transference” was REALLY about while in analysis some years back, I will say this: it has become crystal clear that the deep feelings of deep love are rooted in the intoxicating feeling of being seen and aren’t really about loving the “other” at all.

  17. i heared about your health problems. look into carnivore diet. functioning on optimal parameters gives you a ton of resources and leeway to work with.

  18. Dear Daniel Mackler,

    Thanks for your videos, please could you still make available this your video link on youtube that says call 911 or 112 in case you want to lose your freedom? That is the best video ever. I had a whole full laughter of the truth with some other people from it. I want to save that video permanently as it is very revolutionary.


  19. Hey Daniel, I’m from Upstate NY and a huge fan of your Youtube videos and your insights into the current state of therapy. I’ve been admitted to psychiatric hospitals on and off since the early two-thousands with symptoms related to bi-polar disorder but never diagnosed. Yesterday I attempted to admit an elderly Bosnian neighbor in trouble to some local hospitals but was promptly turned away and treated with much hostility. At this point I’ve decided I need to do something to pursue some sort of mental health reform in my city/region but am concerned as to what if any impact a person with a high school education could have. My first thought is to tap some of my local documentary/filmmaker friends to work on a project, but I was wondering if you had any thoughts. Any tips or advice would be much appreciated. Thanks for everything, take care.

  20. Hi Daniel,

    I wish to thank you for your insightful videos, I think talking to a people like you would be much more helpful than drugging everybody with dangerous mind altering poisons. I have a thing that has been bothering me for quite a while now, and I absolutely have to share it with you, because I think you might help shedding some light on this. This is extremely important and very rarely discussed in any sort of mental health themed conversation, and that is: painting the mental problems entirely as an individual’s self induced problem. What psychiatry does is it takes the individual out of the context of society and then it observes the individual with a looking glass, completely ignoring societal and cultural influences on a person’s well-being. What I’m getting at is that psychiatry will try to protect (by design) any socioeconomic and political system that happens to be in power. For example, the global system in which we live in now is mostly neoliberal capitalism which is nested in this fake democracy which in reality is a plutocracy. If you come to a psychiatrist, or even to a psychologist and say that the world in which 60 people own half of the world’s wealth depresses you, if you tell them that selling your labor to another man for profit feels dehumanizing to you, if you tell them that it makes you lose all hope in humanity to see this commodification of human beings and consistent trashing of things that make us human (empathy, compassion, kindness) and celebration of our lowest impulses as if they were virtues (materialism, narcissism ), if you tell them all that – they will tell you that the problem is You. YOU have to adapt, YOU are too negative, YOU need to change your view, it is always YOU who is the single cause of your own misery. Should we perhaps change the socioeconomic system that causes depression and anxiety on a global scale and create a system which wouldn’t make people so neurotic and traumatized?? Oh, No. No,no,no – We can’t do that – we cant politicize mental health. The System is always right. The maladapted individulal is the problem. Drapetomania, anyone?

    Please, Daniel, make a video on this. Please.

    Being “Mad” (insert any DSM disorder) simply means that you are not getting along with what’s been prescribed to you by the rulers of this sad little planet. Let me be blunt, if an Indonesian woman who works in a Nike or Adidas factory in Jakarta gets paid a couple of dollars per day, if that woman comes to a psychiatrist and says she’s depressed because she’s being brutally exploited, no psychiatrist will tell her that it is normal for her to feel this way in her kind of circumstance, and that the unjust system need to be changed as an only way to truly relieve her of depression. What the shrink will tell her instead is: “Here take this, it will help.” if they say anything at all, you bet your a* they won’t dare to touch the oppressive system.

    Individualization of mental problems removes any sort of political responsibility for the mental state of global population, population ruled by a small percentage of the super-rich, who make all the relevant calls, who decide everything (everything that counts, anyway).

    • Your comment makes sense, but ultimately in any political system that has ever existed on this earth people have struggled with mental difficulties in some way or another. I don’t think it will ever be possible to create a society that gives every last person mental peace and therefore to some degree it is up to the individual to take some responsibility in coping with their circumstances. The issue is that none of us exist in a vacuum. There will always be other humans whose prime motivations are creating new shit to sell, gaining power, competing, deceiving, etc…. and I don’t see how we can ever change that. Every large society ever created leads to the same authoritarian nonsense. As a result it seems like an important aspect of psychiatry should be about helping those who are more emotionally in-tune exist in a world where a large portion of the population are not. I personally wish I could run around hunting and gathering in a world devoid of people, but I know that will never be an option for me. I’d definitely be much happier in such a world — nobody telling me what to do or how to act, but my ideal world will never come to fruition and so the best I can do is learn how to cope with being around 7 billion other people who all have their own desires and agendas. I totally agree with you that most mental problems are a result of modern society, but the societies we were intended to live in (hunter gatherer societies) are a thing of the past. Any existence we can etch out on our crowded planet will be so far removed from how humans are intended to live that it’s just laughable at this point.

      In my opinion why Daniel is so helpful in this regard is that he really pushes everyone to break free of that competitive and lying mindset that is bestowed upon all of us. It has allowed me to be much happier and get satisfaction out of life, even while in less than ideal situations. All I can realistically do as one person is be nice to those around me and be truthful and open. In my opinion, one of the biggest problems in the modern world is the proliferation of the “ego”. Everything now is about how am “I” supposed to become important in this world, how am “I” going to get this or that — I feel as though this mindset is extremely toxic and yet this is the new norm that pretty much all humans have accepted. Even science has shown us that this mindset is ridiculous — nothing any of us do has any meaning or value whatsoever in the grand scheme of things, yet we are all so attached to our own self-importance.

      Another thing — with 10 billion people packed onto this planet, is it even possible to not feel like a cog in a machine? Any person with even a moderate amount of intelligence would develop mental trauma from this alone, yet there is nothing any of us can do about it.

      • Watch this video on youtube (not mine):
        1. Capitalist Realism, Mental Illness and Societies of Control

        Absolving the inherently corrupt system and those who perpetuate it of any responsibility for our mental health is dishonest. Every facet of our lives is influenced negatively by this dehumanizing system. When you privatize mental health, you sweep all the problems under the rug, and prescribe a pill. You don’t have to change the corrupt socioeconomic system that directly causes mental ills, instead a healthy individual has to adapt to the system that makes him sick.

        Anyone who turns a blind eye to this is a charlatan, not a psychotherapist.

  21. Dear Daniel,
    thank you very much for your work. I am very interested in the three films concerning (anti)psychiatry in German. I would like to buy them because I will show parts of them in informal meetings about this subject.
    I am member of the Parlament of hessian state parliament. So I can use this for our efforts for a human psychiatry. Could you please tell me, where I can get your films? Thanks a lot.

    • Hi Christiane,
      Greetings! Did you receive my reply I sent you? I didn’t hear back from you so I am replying here.
      all the best,

  22. Dear Daniel Mackler,

    first of all i want to apologize for my bad english because i am not a native english speaker, but i`ll try my best. I have been following your videos for a long time and in the beginning i could`t tell much about it, but after like 8 years of psychotherapy and griefing my lost childhood i would like 90 to 95 agree with you. You are very smart person and its a shame that so few people watch your videos because i think many peaple could learn so much from you. I have been labeled with all kinds of mental illnisses from personality disorder over sozial fear disturbtion to shizophrenia and made alsmost all the experiences you decribe in your videos. And its so commen, most people arround me have like no empathy for the child i was because they are in denial themselfs and haven`t gone through that process of griefing and instead they call me crazy and label me as mental ill, its horrbile. And if you are forced for some reason to go to the hospital usually the nurses try to make you “normal” and functioning again even though the things you say are so much more healthy then average. Its such a shame that empathy and compassion have so little room in western society. Its as Erik Fromm said in a sick society the ill person is the healthy one and the normal person, that has no symptons, is the sick one.

    But i also wanted to tell you there is like one guy that was talking similar stuff like you called Peter Gerlach, he has an hompage maybe you haven`t heard about him, but he told very interesing stuff, until he died.

    so my best wishes from Germany please keep on going.

    • Hello German Friend,

      It was good to read of your honest experience on Daniel’s page. I live in the east of England and also found Peter Gerlach on the internet several years ago. I watched his videos and downloaded pages from SF Help. Just like Daniel, Peter had his life experience to draw from, his good heart and his intelligence. Peter lived to a good age and attained wisdom. Wisdom he was called to share with us. Daniel sings from the same place and speaks about what many people like us never hear during our growing up time, in our education and working environments; global society brutalises every being and the Earth itself! Children, women, dark skinned people, nonconforming people, wild, pet and farm animals… we are expected to fit into a narrative that some materialist long ago, and far away decided on. Because it was profitable to him then and there. It’s not the 1880s. Where has it got us? More pollution, more noise, confusion, misunderstandings, black or white, an all or nothing approach to Life and this World. I have Hope too, I need to keep Hope alive in me. I am sickened every day to see how competitive, self-centered, petty and vindictive people are towards their own families, “friends”, work colleagues, co-religionists and political allies. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”? Truly there’s a lot of self hatred in this world. I say these things now, but when I go to the shops in this city, I ignore the able bodied (but probably alcoholic) beggars who sit close by the doors. I used to listen to their stories and give a little money sometimes, but now I’m sick of being manipulated out of my hard earned money by guys who stay down for years, being given and losing housing, who’ve become addicts because of this stupid, competitive material culture which engineers-in inequality, just to ramp up the tension. The message: work hard at school and in your jobs citizens, pay your taxes, borrow to keep up with your fooled neighbours. You don’t want to end up like the addict beggar who has little recourse but to get by, by asking the public to keep him or her exactly where he or she is: down and out. It is an offence to my soul to have to see and pass these poor beings on my way into and out of shops etc. But I do pass them by 95% of the time now. As a foreigner, and a woman, alone in this city, I need to be selfish to survive. Of course I’m not happy! I vote, I work, I pay my rent and expenses, I hardly drink, don’t smoke, don’t sleep around, don’t like loud places, don’t and can’t follow the crowd. Like Daniel I tried some of the “normal” (programmed) behaviours when I was younger so as to “fit it”. Even before I tried being a good, outgoing girl, I knew some of the hobbies and behaviours did not, could not, would not ever be for me. ( namely: Collecting pretty papers, talking about boys or bands I actually hated, just doing as the other girls did.) These pursuits gave me no joy, but the social pressure are immense. It was my birthday today, 40 something. I have a couple of friends, many useless acquaintances and family in another country. I do go on!!! Carl Jung, Peter Gerlach, Daniel Mackler… thank God for wise and courageous people like them to shine some light into our shadow places and who let us know that we can use this light for ourselves 🙂

    • I agree! I also am aware of ONE ‘psychiatrist’ who is Dr. Peter Breggin who speaks truth & writes & speaks about NOT taking psychotropic drugs & SSRI’s & helps people to learn how to get off of them the right way!

      • I agree with you, Donna. I found Peter Breggin’s wise words to be absolutely fantastic. At the risk of sounding reductive, I would suggest his uplifting and rather unique approach is characterized by loving validation, non-judgmental empathy and gentle encouragement.

        • Yes, I agree. I had Peter’s book on empathy…very beautiful & I hear his soul coming thru his voice as well!

  23. Dear Dan I have had a lot of grief in life. I am glad I am not a therapist. My grief is a learning disability.

  24. Daniel Mackler, it’s a double whammy when we’ve grown up in a dysfunctional/abusive childhood then further traumatized when seeking answers and/or help from the Mental Health field. I am a psychiatric drug survivor who was falsely diagnosed at 22, and psychiatrically drugged for 35 years, including ECT’s to treat the psychiatric drug induced depressions. But when my mental health licensed alcohol & drug counselor and therapist from my mental health office informed me it was ‘just fine’ to cold-turkey off Klonopin (after being prescribed it for 10 years) was when I truly experienced what it’s like to experience the worst terror filled psychosis (with seizures) and endless mental torture I’ve ever experienced in all my 63 years on this planet and then ‘not believed’ by every one of my mental health care workers that I experienced what I did. My Lithium, Trazone & Effexor cold-turkey withdrawals (again with OK from my therapist) drove me into such a homicidal rage for 5 excruciating months I had to admit myself into yet another God for saken Psychiatric Hospital. Another licensed Addictions Specialist told me it was just fine to abruptly stop Neurontin and became so suicidal I was back inside another hospital, but it would be my last after more than at least 15 hospitalizations through out my life due to side effects, adverse effects & constant withdrawal symptoms. After barely surviving my K-pin withdrawal and all the rest of them I am FREE from the Mental Healthcare system. How they have the audacity to even use the word ‘care’ is mindboggling to me. I’ve had to give up everything in life while they tried fixing my ‘chemically imbalanced’ brain they said I had. I’ve had to give up my entire life, my authentic self, loss of self, my children, my soul, and it eventually took my house leaving me homeless. But after 35 years I walked away owning my own thoughts, feelings & behaviors. And that is Freedom! I wrote a book describing what it’s like being drugged for a lifetime detailing my withdrawals knowing I’ll never have the money to publish, but it was therapeutic writing it. Thank you for your video’s. You’re quite an amazing man.

    • Hey, what an odysee you have gone through. Glad to her you speaking, that you are free now. It s because these psychiatric so called professionals are dissociated from their own feelings. So they can t empathize ….. they can only perpetuate their mental disability by abusing their patients.

    • I was very impressed by your story. I can not even imagine the horror you have been through and I am surprised because we, in Europe, look up to the US for progress and knowledge in all fields including mental health. I hope you are better now and I am sending my best wishes to you from Transilvania!

  25. HI I’m Simone 🙂 I love your content! I think it’s very honest. I have a master’s in psychology, and I aspire to get my license to practice therapy in Texas. I’ve learned so much from what you’ve shared with us. Keep being awesome.

    Take Care

  26. Looking for an escape route. Currently in detention. Need to get away from drug administrators. Transfer possible if transferee same semi secure facility as present. Did you visit any inpatient mental clinics in Lithuania or elsewhere? Private rooms or dormitories? Will they allow OD treatment while in detention? Will they allow day visits? Any Placement Specialists for Lithuania?

  27. Dear Mr. Mackler,
    For nearly 40 years now, I have been mentoring troubled youth, the ones who have gotten in trouble with the law, and more recently, ones who have just been in trouble with life. As a volunteer mentor, I obviously don’t get paid-and I don’t want to. First of all, I would never take money for what I do. I believe this is a calling for me. Secondly, I love what I do so much that if I could afford it, I would pay to do it. And thirdly, most of these kids don’t have any money anyway!
    I don’t have a non-profit organizationot a licensed therapist of any kind, but I am confident that some level of psychology seems to have been “bestowed”upon me as a gift. I have learned the value and effectiveC and I don’t want one. Even though my approach with each young man is mostly the same, I need the freedom to do what I think I need to do at that time, with that person. I was fascinated to hear your story, and much of it I can relate to. I am not a licensed therapist of any kind, but I am confident that some level of psychology seems to have been “bestowed”upon me as a gift. I have learned the value and effectiveness of being a good listener and in many cases being able to help people figure out why they do what they do, and how to get off that path. ( I have also learned that often it is perhaps more important to try and hear what they “don’t” say).
    Because of the stories I hear, I can truly relate to the emotional burden that comes with listening to their trauma. And as you know, getting suicide calls at 3 in the morning is not fun.
    I learned very quickly that the first order of business is to establish a relationship of trust with each young man. That leads to the next, and most important job, getting them to talk about and face the ugly, embarrassing, or shameful trauma they’ve endured. Since I’m not a licensed therapist, I obviously don’t prescribe any medicine, and probably wouldn’t if I could. It has been my experience that missing, or dysfunctional primary relationships, is the elephant in the living room. And, of course, that is usually played out in physical, emotional, or sexual abuse. Now, I would never discourage a person from seeking “professional” help if that’s what they want to do. However, I detest putting people on drugs in general. While I believe that some drugs have a useful and rightful place, my belief is that in most cases, the drugs only treat the symptom, and rarely get to the root of the problem. Though I don’t consider myself as anyone special, it seems that I have established quite a reputation as a mentor, and it is something I cherish deeply. I’ll end with this: there is no greater feeling than to believe that you have helped someone, to whatever degree you can, to live a better life. Maybe someday you’ll find a way to do that again, in a more fulfilling capacity. May God bless.

  28. FINALLY someone who is been thru really bad abuse and love your grieving the key of healing video because you finally nailed and explained your own to gives us a sense of empathy knowing what it is like being abuse. THANK YOU

  29. Hi! I recently came across your YouTube on grieving trauma. I’ve recently gone no contact with my abusive family. I’ve left a toxic work environment at the same time of going no contact. I recently out of the blue just bawled for three days straight. On and off long spurts of grief. What do you recommend I do to get myself to where I heal from the trauma and stop the cycle of “loving” the way my parents programmed in me at a young age. I want to be a healthy loving spouse and parent one day.

  30. Hello Daniel

    I’ve been watching your videos since this spring and they’ve helped me lot understanting problems about family system. I’d like to ask, what do you think about depersonalization dissorder, what causes it and what it takes to cure it. It’s so hard when it seems that not many therapists understant what depersonalization is.

  31. Hi DANIEL,

    Do you have any thoughts on Derealisation or Depersonalisation? Perhaps a video?
    Struggling at this time.

    Thank you

      • I also have troubled with that, I think it’s that. Ibsonetimes lose mins or hours or maybe I just don’t Remeber. But I do know sometimes I can feel myself drifting away and into get to far I panic and literally feel myself pulling back in.

  32. Hey Daniel!

    I recently found your YouTube channel and your insight on therapy and the self-healing process is extremely engaging. I usually throw a lecture video on in the background while I work, but I always avoid your videos until I can sit down with them and give them my full attention. Absolutely fantastic work!

    I’m a 25 year old cartoonist and writer. About a year ago, I started a little comic series about a 14 year old girl with an abusive mother. In writing this story, I quickly found myself looking introspectively into my childhood trauma and my relationship with my parents, and with that, I managed to identify the manipulative behavior my parents have been showing for years that I had accepted as normal. Your video about breaking from your parents nearly matched, beat-for-beat, my experience doing the same.

    Over a year later, my story has become a full-on study into the effects of childhood trauma caused by one’s parents. Every character is, in some way, coping with trauma brought on by how they were raised. I remember you once said that writing an autobiography is extremely useful in self-therapy, and I believe writing this series has had a very similar affect on me. I feel like I’m more in-tuned with my own emotions and more aware of how to grieve for my own unresolved traumas having written this story. And I’ve heard from much of my audience that my story is helping them to do the same.

    My story is called Problem Child, and I’ve included it as my website in this email. I don’t at all expect you to have the time or inclination to read 250+ pages of a comic, but in the off-chance that you do, I’d be honored if you would take a look at my story and give me your thoughts. I’m not asking for a public shout-out or anything like that, but I very much respect and admire your insight, and would be extremely honored to hear your opinion on my work, as a former therapist and as a teacher. If people are telling me that my story is teaching them, I’d love to have a better idea whether or not it’s teaching them the right stuff.

    Keep up the great work, I’m eagerly looking forward to your next video.


    • Hi Brian — greetings, and thank you. I looked at your comic and I think it’s excellent. I read several different episodes and I found it brave and honest. I hope you are reaching a lot of people — your work deserves it. I’m working on some new videos now. Stressful — but hopefully it’ll be worth it!! Warm hello from New York——Daniel

    • Hello

      I’ve just finished binge-reading your story.

      I think it’s very insightful and shows, in a very approachable way, the complexity of behaviors and relations influenced by traumas.

      To my mind, the biggest advantage of the story is that through it you portray very well the simple (but not so readily obvious to all in everyday situations) fact that there’s always a reason (usually coming from the past) behind someone’s “misbehavior, acting out, recalcitrance, etc”. And that in crisis situations, more than anything else, an expression of love and understanding is needed.

      I’m glad to have found out about your work and look forward to reading further episodes



  33. The algorythms brought me your video of why you left therapy. I thought this was so great that I passed it on to my 18-year old child. The phenomena are similar in other professional spheres. I have not yet read or watched other things you do.

  34. Hi Daniel,
    I’m about your age, living in Sweden, and I have been watching like twenty of your youtube videos. I like them a lot and they really moved me. You are a brave man. Kind. And I have kind of the same story as you have. Been to therapists three rounds (three years totally), with three different approaches which has been really great for me. Read hundreds of self healing books and spent thousands of hours at youtube watching self helping videos. And of cause thinking a lot about my own life. I’m not enlightend. But I’m feeling okay with my life. So..
    I got curious about your approach to life. I’m curious why you aren’t able to let go? Is it me that’s missing something here!? For fifteen years I have returned to Eckhart Tolle and his teaching. I truly belive that identification with the ego is the problem of nearly everything. I really do. The ego with it’s history. The ego and the dissociation. When I’m really conscious I don’t have these problems. No worry and no struggling or suffering. That strong ego is now gone. I’m not always in that place, but it’s getting better and better. So my question. How come your not talking about this simple and core truth. To me this is the core foundation to let it go. Not necessarily to forgive. But to let go. How many hours do we need spend to keep on investigating every little detail and corners of our childhood. What good will that do for us. Will it be enough for you some time, some day?

    • Hello Anders,
      Just feel compelled to respond to your very pertinent inquiry about letting go. I am going to try be succinct: I believe that mostly what passes for “letting go” is actually dissociating. True detachment is extremely difficult to achieve and requires a transcendent agent, so to speak.
      Sometimes I feel quite bummed that I cannot just be done with it and “forgive” my parents for their lack of emotional attunement over my life, but it is not static, it is an organic process. And ironically, I find the more I am honest about feeling angry with them for whatever, the more I CAN forgive them also—they also had it tough.

    • Dear Anders,
      It appears that your reply is well intentioned and I hope it is.

      A useful, proven approach to PTS is found in ‘meeting others where they are at,’ rather than pulling (or pushing) them to where we feel they should be. And indeed, if we are being honest, we would be better served by asking why we feel the need to impose our standards upon them.

      For many survivors, the words “let it go’ are precisely those used by their abusers. It aids dissociation and triggers splitting off of past pain, neither of which can bring healing, a fact abusers are already familiar with and which is complicit in their own pattern of pain and in furthering that poisonous pedagogy.
      What can bring healing, as Alice Miller wrote in “The Body Never Lies” is when, “ we need [and gain] one special experience: the experience of love for the child we once were.” This is why as adult survivors of abuse we require trusting, enlightened witnesses to provide nonjudgmental mirroring and in that the growing capaciousness for healthful processing strategies. More than that, do we offer wise counsel, let alone the validation of an enlightened witness, when we simply instruct others to ‘let go’ of their trauma, as if doing so was in any way healing? I do not believe so.

      Similarly, reducing the effects of trauma to attachments of the ego is overly reductive and wholly ignores the reality of a very sick world filled with abusive systems. Since we do live in an old Earth filled with Ibsen’s ghosts from our past (and a rather toxic present), a world defined in so many corners by predation by humans of nature and of each other, it is virtually impossible for all but hermits and ascetics or perhaps those living in remote, naturally self-sustaining indigenous communities, to find safe, accepting, nonjudgmental environments conducive to self-actualization.
      Safety is needed for healing and our world as organized presently is rather lacking in that critical necessity. While edenic communities were a myth, I doubt our social organization was always as marked by such incomprehensible inequity, such dysfunction and universal despair as it is today.
      So instead of counseling ’letting go’ let us stand by one another on our journeys to healing. We can give ourselves and others the safety, patience, curiosity, self-care and deep validation necessary for a non-dissociated chance at authenticity and the recovery of each of our true selves. In a society such as this, safety can facilitate wellness individually and collectively.

  35. Hi,

    I watched your youtube videos and I have to agree what a childhood trauma can bring to relationships in real life. My husband was too emotionally abusive, passive agressive, cold, mean and he even had an affair. I am so emotionally drained and devalued by his actions. I asked him to move out but I am helping him now recover because he was a victim of childhood neglect and abuse by his parents.

    • Hello Anders,
      Just feel compelled to respond to your very pertinent inquiry about letting go. I am going to try be succinct: I believe that mostly what passes for “letting go” is actually dissociating. True detachment is extremely difficult to achieve and requires a transcendent agent, so to speak.
      Sometimes I feel quite bummed that I cannot just be done with it and “forgive” my parents for their lack of emotional attunement over my life, but it is not static, it is an organic process. And ironically, I find the more I am honest about feeling angry with them for whatever, the more I CAN forgive them also—they also had it tough.

      • I would like to offer another perspective on “letting it go / forgiveness/ dissociation.”

        For the past year I have been working with a therapist who combines traditional talk therapy with energy psychology modalities: EFT, Logosynthesis, Ask and Receive, Zensight, bilateral brain stimulation, and Tapas Acupressure Technique.

        Using these methods, I have released much of the trauma I have been holding on to for most of my 57 years. Not easy or quick, but definitely possible!

  36. Dear Mr. Mackler,
    I found your video about the reasons for quitting being a therapist quite convincing and agreeable.
    I’m a German artist/designer, now 70 years old. At the age of 35 I had a heavy drinking & depression problem and underwent a psychotherapy with more than 400 (!) sessions which took 8 years before I felt self-secure enough to function without the therapist. At age 50 I opened a gallery but fell into an even more heavy depression which led almost to suicide because I couldn’t handle the business side of being a gallerist/artist. I had to take another therapy of 25 sessions to get back into balance. From what I experienced the therapies were helpful but the cost/outcome relation of Freudian based therapy is quite unappropriate. I have read many books from Freud to Alice Miller (you mentioned her in the video), Jeffrey Masson, Carl Rogers and so forth.
    Via Bateson et al., Palazzoli & the Milano group, de Shazer, Watzlawick and Erickson I learned about the “systemic” or “hypnosystemic” approach which I now think makes a lot of, if not THE most sense.
    The German therapist Gunther Schmidt has developped a post-Ericksonian Hypno-systemic approach. His position towards the (German) mental health system mirrors your experience. Return to common sense as well as the exchange on eye level between “therapist” and “patient” or client, finding solutions for the clients’ future instead of labelling them to “be” something (an alcoholic, bipolaror etc.) or to “have” something (paranoia, a disorder etc.). This is the official policy in his clinic). If you can read or understand German I recommend his books & audio seminars which also deal with many of the topics you are describing, such as responsibility and the overwhelming trauma input by clients. Here’s a video:
    Greetings from Germany
    Berthold Bell

  37. Hi Daniel, just a quick word on the “Why don’t you smile in your videos”-comment: Thank you so much for not doing that. Thank you for insisting on real communication rather than the opting for the shameful branding and fakeness and likability hunting that is taking place all over YouTube and elsewhere. Please keep doing what you do and keeping it real. Real is under attack. Let’s all do our part in warding it off in order to get back to the business of real life.

    Also, thank you for the awesome videos that you have put out. They are of tremendous help.

    All the best,

  38. Hi Daniel,
    I’ve been following your research and am so impressed by the work you have done to promote the medication free model of mental illness recovery. As I’m sure you’re aware, many people, including those in the field are still convinced that the only way to “treat” (more like control) people is by forcing toxic drugs into their systems without really even looking deeper into their core issues…so it’s really refreshing to see a professional support a natural approach. Please continue your documentaries, as they are fascinating and informative!

  39. Daniel, been listening to stuff for several years now. Thank you so much for all the content you produce and post; it really is insightful.

    I think of you every time I hear this Macklemore song:

    I feel he captures the painful, human side effects of the prescription model most of the medical field follows. Check it out!

  40. I agree with your welcome statement Daniel! On a slightly different note, I am a therapist still in residency and I already started to observe, noticed, and sense things in the field and about myself that you confirmed in your videos. On top of that I have come across other information and/or research that has also changed my views in a similar fashion. I plan not to worry about getting my license and, instead, decided to switch careers when the time is right. Thanks for being you!

    Warm Regards,

    • Hi T,
      interesting comments! I am a therapist in training and trying to decide whether to continue. They are teaching us telemarketing skills and diversity rather than true psychology, the way it used to be for people like Carl Jung. I am considering to switching to be a life coach because there are less restrictions and programming. If you have any thoughts on this, I’d appreciate them.

  41. Hello Daniel

    After having watched most of your videos on YouTube and having read one third of one of your books, I started wondering what, if any, is your opinion on HSP (hihgly sensitive person) concept.
    It’s just that your insights are so accurate and so unheard-of in the mainstream discourse that my almost immediate association was with HSP.

    I’m not a great fan of labels but I’ve been delving into this one quite a bit recently and it’s shed light on many ‘whys’ as far as our reactions, behaviors are concerned.

    Anyway, above all, thank you for pushing forward the idea of finding our true self as (the more I think about it) it seems to be more and more necessary in any form of relation with the world.


    • thanks Maciek — hmm, i have heard of HSP but i haven’t read much about it. of the little bit i’ve read, it seems i probably qualify for some of the qualities, but probably not others…. warm greetings! daniel

      • Of course, there are different levels of sensitivity and everybody is unique in their nature. Also, even though there’s a sensitivity test designed by Elaine Aron, I’m pretty convinced she herself would be the first person to agree that it’s not like it’s hard science where you can easily classify people in either group.

        To my mind, very good point about it is that she’s eager to stress it’s not a diagnosis in any way but a human trait. And rather than trying to treat it, we should all realize that it just requires a bit different lifestyle (both those who consider themselves HSPs and those who don’t).

        Sadly, when I Googled it (I’m from Poland) there were quite a few results in my language which said something to the effect of “diagnose yourself”…

        According to E. Aron, there are about 15-20% of HSPs in any society but the level of those who actually manifest themselves, that is, act openly in line with their nature, depends on whether sensitivity is treated as something good or not. If not, the majority of HSPs are likely to acquire a kind of veneer of ‘normality’, a certain facade of toughness that is a sort of survival mode.

        If you are interested, here’s the test

        There’s also a movie on high sensitivity which I personally found a bit too idyllic and a little too recklessly encouraging those who consider themselves HSPs to inform everyone around about their sensitivity, without any mention of the importance of a support structure.

        Anyway, I hope I haven’t bored you with the subject 🙂

        Thanks for the response


        • PS. To be fair, Elaine Aron does talk a lot about seeking out other HSPs and keeping in touch with them on a regular basis, it’s just the movie that left me with the impression I mentioned at the end of the previous message. Her books and talks (which can be watched from that site as well) by no means give that impression and I find them very insightful, informative and serving a great purpose to people who consider themselves HSPs.

          I’ve been thinking about the concept of HSP also in the context of your main focus, that is, dealing with childhood trauma.
          The question I’ve been pondering is whether it’s not easier for HSPs to carry out such an analysis since their typical features are a very rich, complex inner world and a heightened perception of details, subtleties, moods. Analogously, could it be that for non-HSPs a self-inquiry of this sort might be more difficult or even seem outlandish as it does not (as it does for HSPs) constitute an integral part of their daily realities?
          I know you ascribe not dealing with those past events to something that you call splitting off. What I’m asking is, is it possible that, since the majority of people are non-HSPs, only for the HS minority an analysis of that sort comes naturally and even if they live split off from the actual state of things for some time, all the time they’re actually drawn to the core by their constantly-processing-deeply brain? What follows, can it be possible that since non-HSPs are not, in a way, biologically predisposed to carrying out such a deep analysis, for most people it seems like needles overthinking and that’s why so many of us split off easily?

          These are of course mere questions, by no means attempts at statement of facts.


          • Hello to you both,
            I read the conversation thread and I wanted to mentioned that there is also fascinating information about the differences between HSPs and empaths. I would say looking up information by Judith Orloff and from the youtube channel, Vital Mind Psychology, would be good starting places. I have more questions about the subject than I do affirmative opinions, but that is who I am as a person. I just wanted to pass on the information I encountered so far. It may or may not answer some the questions both of you have.

            Warm Regards,

            • Hi there

              After a cursory look, it seems to me like it is actually the same, only ‘an empath’ is supposed to mean a person high on sensitivity spectrum or it’s an HSP that is capable of empathizing even more than most other HSPs, also the vocabulary is different as there’s talk of spirit and energy in case of ’empaths’ . However, the stuff that Abdul Saad and Judith Orloff talk about can already be found in HSP research. Especially the part where HSPs ‘feel’ other people’s emotions, moods, states easily.
              HSPs are different, just like A. Saad’s ’empath types’.
              J. Orloff’s definition (‘An empath is an emotional sponge. They absorb emotions, physical symptoms, and energy of others into their own bodies.’) sounds like a large element of what an HSP definition says.

              Personally, I’m not sure what the label is for since aspects like narcissist attraction or codependency have been researched in a similar way in the realm of HSP, but I guess it’s helpful for some people and also everybody who wants to improve their life follows the message that appeals to their particular sensibilities.
              Although, I think it could be a little misleading as to the meaning of the verb ‘to empathize’. By that I mean that the ability to actively show empathy doesn’t most likely depend on the level of sensitivity (or being an ’empath’ or not for that matter) as many sensitive people are too overwhelmed by their sense of empathy to actually do something for the other person and non-HSPs may show high levels of empathy propelled by their strong inner sense of right and wrong, for example.

              However, at the end of the day, they are both labels associated with a particular jargon and maybe approach as well, that describe more or less the same feature.
              If you prefer to talk about sensing spirits, energy, soul, you are more drawn to one.
              If you prefer to talk about heightened perception, fine-tuned nervous system, increased awareness of the surrounding and higher sensitivity to stimuli, you’re more drawn to the other.

              You’ve pointed to some materials worth looking up in your opinion .
              However, maybe you have your own views or comments on my thoughts from the previous messages (especially the latter part of the last one)?



  42. Hi Daniel. Your video today about smiling reminded me of this video which is mind blowing. Smiling is quite important to the little girl in the video. I did a little research into who this gal is and what was the circumstances around this video. Apparently she was talking to her mother who was in the midst of a divorce from the girl’s father. I’d love to know your take on the video.

  43. Hi David,

    My main question is do you know of any health professionals I could turn to for help on beating psychosis without meds? I live in Ireland and the best case scenario would be to source professional help in Ireland. I was diagnosed with bipolar type 2 in 2011. I can explain my story further I just don’t know if I should put it all in a blog post. Thank you for your work. The questions you have raised about psychiatry are so underrepresented.

    • It does not matter which type of ‘Mental Disorder’ yours was Colm – BiPolar II (I understand) – the Treatment is ALWAYS THE SAME!! The problem sources from the SUB-conscious Mind and this is what’s needed to be addressed. I found Therapists to be troublesome and I just Journalled my Dreams, and tried to interpret them (mostly successfully) for about 5 years. The HypnoTherapist, my first Therapist, was conducting a FireWalk after quite a break from him and he asked three times over the cousrse of the night – “What have you been doing John?”, and I gave him the same answer every time – “DREAMS!” I think that he altered his Therapy due to my comment – I have only ever heard of similar once from a fprmer Mental Health Sufferer – a person who the Sufferer hadn’t met for years gave a similar comment.
      The first thing I know about you Colm is that you’re gifted. You’ll have considerable achievements already and once you teme the SUB-conscious Mind you’ll be even more powerful!! That’s something to look forward to!! P.S. Meditation, SandPlay and Art Therapy are also good for raising issues from the SUM-conscious.

  44. Hi! I saw your great video on why you quit being a therapist, I just wonder what you work with instead? I am very interested in psychology and thinking about getting a bachelor. But don’t know what I should do because I am a free spirit and dont want to work in their corrupt way? Do you have a private clinic instead?
    Thank you

    • Hey, I am thinking of starting therapy, and I am wondering how to tell them that I am completely unwilling to take meds? Are there certain things/reasons that I should say or maybe even shouldnt say.

      • I’m seeing this kind of late but wanted to comment anyway. I have seen many therapists and simply made it clear that I am not willing to take meds.

        Therapists can’t prescribe them anyway so usually they don’t say much.

        I did have a psychiatrist get angry and frustrated with me because I wouldn’t take any meds though. That was a day program during a time I was in really bad shape from an ongoing traumatic event.

        But I was way too aware of the side effects to stuck to my boundaries. They can’t force you, particularly if you are outpatient.

      • I’ll take this one. If this is a boundary issue, you can set limits within a psycho therepuetic framework and say, as an example, thanks but no thanks to say, melatonin used for jet lag or to reset the circadian rhythm.

    • I too am a former psychotherapist who practiced in Michigan for about 15 years. I totally agree with most of what Daniel had to say. I opted to only see patients who had commercial insurance (I know that Daniel knows what that means). My practice was strong until people lost their jobs around 2009-2010 due to economic crisis of our Country. Nobody bailed me out LOL. So I bailed instead. I am still a practicing Social Worker and I am very happy doing what I do. However, it is a struggle. I think I work in the most misunderstood profession on the planet. A BA degree in SW will not get you very far. You will need to agree to take on an enormous amount of student loan debt to get a Masters Degree to be a psychotherapist and pray that you can make enough money to pay it back. Just so you know, prayer will not pay your bills LOL

  45. Hi Daniel,

    I really love your videos about trauma recovery! My question to you is what are some signs that you may have preverbal trauma that you’ve dissociated from? What are some ways that you can see this out and recover from it?


    • hi diane — thanks for your words. well, the first thing that comes to my mind is that a person has relationship problems, attachment problems — any sort of problems being himself or herself in relationships, forming healthy attachments, unconsciously choosing unhealthy people to be close with (friends, romance), or perhaps being unable to form more healthy attachments…also deep feelings of insecurity…lack of love for self…. all stuff that can come from very early trauma…. of course it can come from later trauma too, so it may not be easy to sort out… i should make a video on this. a good subject. i’ll think about it more. greetings — daniel

    • I 2nd that. I feel that I just meant a fantastic person I would have most relationships in my life has been very tough the last one especially but this new one it’s almost been a year spend the greatest most honest and filling relationship I’ve had and just when everything is going right I think a lot of my past traumas have come out in the form of 3 Rage episodes for for Ray’s episodes and problematic thinking that lead to looking for setups and abandonment in the end. I’ve even noticed myself setting up my own abandonment making impossible tasks or missions for my partner and then punishing her for not falling through on what I thought was expecting from somebody that love me. I saw that this is destructive I was craving lots of stress and making poor decisions because of that not following through his goals or even seeing her making goals exist my only thankfulness out of this whole situation is it showing me how deep how strong and how the me that she saw and loved was good enough and strong enough to deserve her deep love she showed me steadfast and true through this terrible time which put her on the street twice. My hats off to the caretakers of us and please make a movie about how to deal with these traumas and melt them away and had to accept more so I guess how to accept good people into a life we’re only mostly bad people and takers were

  46. Hello. I watched your video on exploring unconditional love. I have a similar situation but the parent is needy rather than distant. Have you reached a point of forgiveness with your father? I’m trying to get there but I don’t really know what that looks like.


  47. I have a question. What do you think about pickup, I think there is some controversy behind it. I wonder what do you think about it?

  48. Hi Daniel,

    Thank you so much for all your videos! They are great help and encouragement to me. Especially videos on childhood trauma.
    I wanted to share your videos with my friends who are struggling with similar problems, but they speak only limited English. Is there a way to add subs for your videos on YT? I could translate them into Polish.

    • hi Barbara — greetings. hmm….it’s a bit complex to add subtitles. the document first has to be time-coded and then the subtitles inserted in according to the time codes. it also helps if first there is a transcription of the document in English (also time-coded), and then that document is translated. it’s time consuming. is there a specific video you wanted to translate? meanwhile, one of my films is already translated into polish — hello from nyc—-daniel

      • Thanks for the link, gonna share this one!

        I was thinking about translating, for example, the newest one about forgiveness.
        What is your experience with built-in YT’s own subtitles system? It seems like the program is time-coding the video on its own and adds (not perfect but somewhat accurate) automatic generated English translation of the video.

        Doing it manually would be, as you’ve mentioned, really time-consuming. But adding the translation over these generated time-coded frames would be easier.
        At least this is what I gathered from the YT tutorials…

        • hi barbara — yes, i could definitely download youtube’s automatically generated time codes. they save a LOT of time but are inaccurate in many ways and often start and finish the subtitles in strange places and so have to be adjusted…so it still involves work, though much less than starting from nothing. if you want i can download the automatically generated subtitles from the “forgiveness” video and send them to you — and if you want to translate the subtitles into polish i can insert them into the video — and you can see how they look and see if they work or if they need adjustment… all the best! daniel

          • We could definitely try it!
            I would feel bad taking too much of your time for this, so if this whole process ends up being too time-consuming, it seems there is one more way. I’ve read that it’s possible as a video creator to enable adding of subtitles directly by the viewers and then, if happy with the outcome, approve them.
            I am open to both. Whatever is more convenient for you 🙂

          • Hi Daniel,

            I would be more than happy to have someone from my team do the subtitles for you. I used to work in broadcast video and my new company is closer to therapy so we could definitely help. 🙂
            Let me know if you want me to, we could just generate the time coded caption file and send it to you.

            • hi Andrew — that sounds great! is there anything i can do to help you, anything you need from me to make this possible? daniel

  49. In the western world we have a far better health system but there are quite a few peoblems. Its easy for me to make a comment(s) because I’m nt at the coal-face – it must be really draining to see the same mistskes repeated.

  50. Hi Daniel! i’m Lina, i’m colombian but i live in France. I’m physician but i quitted my job in 2012 because a lot of interesting reasons and now i live in a permaculture farm where we try to live in the simplest and beautiful way, contemplating autonomy in all levels, lookinf for harmonie with the planet.

    Like you, there are two things i’m interested now, more and more: emotionnal development and pollution in our planet…

    I had suffered depression for 15 years and i used antidepressants until they had not positives effets but negatives effets, so i looked for another treatments and i did a lot of differents therapy. Finally i found meditation (The processus of the presence and Vipassana) and it helped me a lot. I have a sister and a cousin with a diagnosis of schizophrenia…
    Lately i started to feel a vocation for helping people in self-managing emotions and i was thinking in doing an specialization in psychiatry and i was wondering if there are psychiatrist who do not use medication…. i found your video about Open dialogue….

    it’s quite amazing, and i want to go there. But for the moment i would like to thank you and i would like to do a traduction tto spanish of you video

    thanks a lot!

      • oh!!! 🙂 🙂 y qué hacias en Colombia?

        Gracias de nuevo a ti, voy a compartir tus videos!

        Cuando quieras venir a Francia, eres bienvenido, el sitio en el que vivo vale la pena conocerlo!

        • gracias lina — tengo amigos colombianos, y estaba viviendo con ellos. pero llegue a letecia — estaba viajando en sudamerica por 6 meses. una experienca fantastica. aprendí mucho!!! daniel

  51. I am residency trained primary care physician who just quit practicing abruptly on August 2, 2012. I now consider this my ‘get out of jail’ anniversary. I quit for similar reasons as you find yourself in now. I was only 52 years old at the time! For 2 years it was very hard for me to adjust to not working as my career had been my whole life since I had graduated medical school at 26… The reason for this response: My life is far better than it ever has been now. I’ve invested in me: personal work, extensive reading, working through the traumas I experienced while working, journaling, etc., etc., etc….. I’m investing in me! I hope you find your way. I did. I have no regrets for quitting.

  52. I just saw your vid. I was a front line worker in the inner city in Can. Vicarious T, understood. Working with people with the same background as I, opened the box of Pandora. You are so on the button, I wish I had you working with me. Keep going brother.

  53. Do you know IFS from Doctor Richard Schwartz? I want to encourage you to investigate it at the Center of Self Leadership online. This very effective therapy form brings relief for therapists while it is the best way I know to help the clients…

  54. I watched your video about leaving the mental health field and cried. I’ve only been licensed for a few years but started in the field in direct care when I was 19. I have experienced so much abuse at the hands of the system. At one point, my physical health deteriorated due to stress from an agency to the point of losing significant amounts of weight and nearly being hospitalized. I came away from that experience with an autoimmune disorder. I’ve been physically attacked by clients who were not in their right mind, requiring hospital care, and told by the agency “well, you get paid don’t you?” I made $11 an hour. Every experience seems to be worse than the last.

    I’ve tried private practice and even though I’ve been successful in building up my caseload and financially being a little more sound, I’m burned out. Can’t talk to colleagues about it…they all just herald the boundaries comments. I tried taking time off for self care but returning from that, I’m just as burned out as before. I feel guilty leaving this quickly after being licensed but I’m not sure how to keep going. I’m curious how you transitioned out of being a therapist? I’m feeling a little lost on how to get out–all of my experience and skills are related to mental health. It doesn’t seem like there are any “natural” roles to transition to :/

    • I am a social worker who works at a place where a therapist hung herself in her office, committing suicide. I was also personal friends with her outside of work and was calling 911 when she was found. My co-worker who offices directly across the hall from me found her. This has triggered a lot of guilt for me and has made it harder to go to work. I feel traumatized and afraid. It’s only been three weeks, but I thought I would get better, but am finding things harder to do. Work is no longer a safe place. I am getting therapy but feel isolated. People think that I should be moving on emotionally. I am trying. Any suggestions are welcome. I feel a bit de-skilled right now in helping myself.

      • Tia and Ann, I’m so sorry for what both of you have been through.

        I’m not a professional, but a client who at 57 years old and dozens of therapists, finally found one who is able to help me.

        What has made the difference is that combined with traditional talk therapy, he uses nontraditional methods – energy psychology modalities: Emotional Freedom Technique, Logosynthesis, and a couple of others. This has helped to cut through alot of the crap without the unending cycle of abreaction that could never seem to be healed.

        My therapist has shared with me that he uses the techniques himself to deal with his own issues.

        I urge you both to check out ACEP, the national national membership organization for practitioners:

        Gary Craig, the founder of EFT, has a comprehensive web site, – I highly recommend his highly detailed Gold Standard tutorials.

        Willem Lammers, the founder of Logosynthesis, has a wonderful facebook group, several outstanding self-help books for practitioners and laypeople, and his web site is

        I hope this is helpful. I send healing energy to both of you.

  55. As a graduate counseling student, I have discovered that giving advice is not allowed in our profession. This mystified me. I thought that was the whole point of being a counselor especially when dealing with a severely depressed, panicked, etc. person who does not know where else to turn for empathy and … advice. Why is the counseling industry so adamantly against advice giving even in cases when a client explicitly asks for advice?

    Meanwhile, every counselor I went to gave me advice–and very obviously and directly too. Does the whole profession consist of pretending like one follows the rules but whatever is done behind the closed doors is actually more real and human, its just that no one wants to speak against the “regulations”?

    • I think that empathy is the essential element—really does advice stick?Perhaps it is helpful when proferred judiciously—otherwise it just feels like projection.
      Even when the “client” asks for advice I wonder what is it that is actually being asked?
      I did not know that counsellors were not allowed to give advice, but it makes sense in that there is so much caution about imposing one’s personal views upon the vulnerable—still it sounds like the profession has taken a rather rigid stance.

      • I once studied clinical psychology, and hence counseling.

        Well, as I understood it, some ‘schools’ are against giving advice (like the Rogerian school), others do promote giving advice (like in behaviorial modification etc.).

        But there are over 300 forms of psychotherapy/counseling. I think the most important thing here is respect for the client and that the client feels respected. That alone might be very healing.

        That said, I had my portion of bad therapists as well. The arrogance in the field is staggering and sometimes I wonder if the whole field isn”t filled with narcissist and even psychopaths?

        just a thought, just a thought.

          • well, I don’t know exactly what you mean by this. Why this reaction?

            I just mean there are, I think, a lot and I mean a lot of narcs and psychopaths attracted to this field. Is that so strange? Look at the power they can have! I am not saying they all are. BUT, the top of this field is certainly psychopathic. No question in my mind about that.



            • well, I was laughing, of course, because of the irony—then my thought was (if you look up the definition of psychopath or narcissist) we all are have some of these traits, just at various points on the continuum—I apologize if I have offended

              • No, you haven’t offended me at all! don’t worry. And yes we all have some of the traits, but I was really talking about full blown narcs and psychopats. A psychopath is not someone with some trace of a psychopath of course.I have for sure spot them in the field. And at many posts you are recruited to be a psychopath! But how they do it I need a lot of time to explain. Suffice to say for now that I take it for granted that most key-posts in medical establishments are occupied by psychopaths.

                • I agree, there are a lot of narcs in the field of psychotherapy… and, I have had the unfortunate experience of meeting them. They seem to love the vulnerability of their patients, which puts them in the position of being able to traumatize them, while appearing to be a sympathetic ear. I am done with psychotherapist! They didn’t validate the reality of the situation that I was living in; the reality of the family that I was living in. They acted like it was my responsibility to ‘know’ what it was that I was describing and to ‘know’ what to do about it. If I had known what it was that I was experiencing, I wouldn’t have needed a therapist to define it for me. And, if I had known what to do about it, I wouldn’t have needed help… would I? It is a sick field of stupid predators as far as I am concerned. I hope that they burn in hell!

  56. Hi Daniel,

    I felt inspired watching some of your video’s and checking out you films. You’re doing what I really want to be doing!!! I’ve been a psychotherapist for 28 years and a reconnective healing practitioner for the last 5 years. But for the last few years I’ve feel bored with everything …except thoughts of doing a podcast, which I’ve started, and thoughts of doing something with film. My interests are somewhat different but somewhat the same as yours (but everything about healing and helping people and other therapists). Have you heard of a course in miracles?

    • Hi Trey. My name is David and I read your post. I am currently reading A Course In Miracles. It’s a real life shifter. It’s really redirected my focus of reality that feels right to me. How far along are you in it?


  57. Galacar, I would love to chat with you. I’m in a grad program in Counseling and I agree with lots of what you said! My email is river261 at hotmail.

    • Sorry for my late reply!

      Thanks for sharing. I will send you an e-mail tonight!

      Looking forward to ‘talking to you. Thank you!



  58. Hi Daniel! Could we use your plastic in the sea song for a compilation album about plastic pollution? All of the money will go to saving our oceans!

  59. Dear Daniel .

    Thanks for your very insightfull video’s! Love watching and listening to you.

    For what’s it worth, I see you as a very beautifull being!!

    I once studied clinical psychology and I had to
    do a half year internship and it was jaw dropping. First, I walked along with a shrink, and he did see patients on a 10 minutes basis and that was all he needed to subscribe his, sorry but I say it how it is, SHIT!. Furthermore, I hadn’t made the internship. and if there is a good reason that was ok by me, but you know what the reason was? I knew too much!!! Really! It is true that I probably had read more books then anyone who worked there, and that was because I loved this profession! Even in my spare time I read hundreds of books!.

    But I don’t regret that I haven’t made it, simply because I have discovered how many really powerfull alternative healing methods are out there!. I have seen with my own eyes how someone with severe trauma was cured in less then 10 minutes!! Never seen that by a psychiater or psychologist.

    And I don’t want to even start with the horrible, horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible,horrible, things psychiatry has done to my S.O. (I am starting to cry now).

    But, have you ever wondered about this.There is a lot of resistance against the psychiatry field and righty so, And by really scientific people ( I won’t start here but ‘science’ isn’t what you think it is.). But despite all this, nothing changes! Why? Because the whole filed is purposely designed NOT to cure people! It really is all by design. If you want to know where the ‘great”( ugh ugh) ‘psychiatrist and even psychologists really came from, you have to study the “Tavistock Institute” in London and it’s satellite organisations! Did you know that there is even a statue of Freud in front of the Tavistock Building. And what is Tavistock all about then? warfare! That’s right there is war going on against ‘ordinary’ people ( I really don’t think there are ‘ordinary’ people.)
    It is, as you have said in your videos all about control! Also, if you understand that the top of the psychiatric field is psychopathic, that might give some insight in why psychiatry is the way it is. It was never ment to cure people. Au contraire.
    So much more to say about this topic alone, but I will leave it for now.
    But if you have any questions feel free to ask. Not that I have all the answers, of course I don’t but I have studied this sort of thing fro more then 16 years now.

    Daniel/, thanks for your beautifull videos and let them coming in!



    • Dear Daniel, your videos are such a healing light in this crazy time and space we’re living in. I cannot thank you enough.
      I teach yoga and have been a meditator for some years. I started law school last year to establish better tools to advocate for people in a meaningful way. Your video on anxiety (and being true to yourself) has been especially insightful and so very helpful. Thank you so much, beautiful soul. Thank you.

    • hi, okay…so it sounds like you know what you are talking about….maybe you could give me a little advice then. My 16 yr old son is experienceing pshychosis or whatever you call it. His mom has really fkd him up over the years and I am constantly feeling like i am picking up the peices. I am a really strange person too, so I kinda add to the weirdness of it all…but I am good at heart and don’t mess with him at all…im trying to save him from his own mind. His mother is one of those munchousen bi-proxy people. She has faked leukemia 3 times….to my family…her next boyfriends family which my son considered his step father…and even lied about it to some doctors….She dosn’t seem content unless someone is in the hospital, or having at least 2 medical appointments per week. My son lived with her when young and she had him in psychiatric correction facilities. I took him at around 10 years old when she got interested in something else {marrage} and moved to nova scotia abandoning him for a year and a half. I got full custody at that time…He lived with me for five years and was pretty much normal, and we took him off the garbage the shrinks were giving him, and literally got them out of our lives for a while. She came back, and took me to court for custody, and only got visitation….cuz we totally proved she is an evil centered lunatic…but they wouldnt do anything about it….as he visited her more….she lured him at 15 saying she would buy him a 2 million dollar house {well, them all} because her mom just got a 2 mil settlement with her ex…and she did. She promised him cars, and a trade with his new step dad etc…and he decided to kinda move back with her…well, at least half the week. So i’m not sure if she is messing with his food or whatever….but we caught her messing with mine on a dinner visit…i have crohns disease…and she put hot hot peppers in my peice of the lasangna…and said there was zero spices…lol…anywya i didnt trust that peice, cuz its the peice i took last time we had it there…and she knew i would go fo the one right next to hers….anyway i took a different peice and she freaked out and yelled at me….then her husband came in and took the peice that was supposed to be mine and literally dropped his fork and yelled what the hell is in this…my toungue is on fire…and no…was not heat hot…the food had been out of the oven for 30 min at that point. So my son saw this and kicked her out of his life….for now….He is on 1mg respiridone….okay i forgot to tell you that he was hallucinating a year ago about demons and angels living in his stomach….and recently demons coming to take him away….Both times it seems to be drug induced psychosiss….but i’m thinking his mom was involved somehow…i just cant prove it…i’ve had him for a month now..and hes doing alot better….but i could use some advice….this whole situation is beyond complicated…theree is SOOO much more to tell…and ive got things prety well under control…but i could use some help. He is no longer hallucinating….but he faked taking his meds for a bit and was hearing voices…he’s not now…but the respiridone is covering it up….also he has heightened awaremenss like hearing and seeing…and to tell you the truh…alot of wierd shit happens around both of us…so we are very spiritual people….and both quite powerfull….although i know some of his thought power is delusional…and i dont want to oust spiriutality from his life…because i feel that without it he won’t get better….my name is chris by the way….so much more to tell…but maybe you could shed a bit of light on the situation….i do think im doing the right things so far though

      • Hi Chris from Chris—although I presume that you are looking for a response from Mr. Mackler, I just thought I’d make quick mention of my concern that it sounds like the deep problems (coping mechanisms) with which you son is beset is in response to the way in which he is being parented—honestly by both mom and dad

      • Hi Chris.

        I read your piece but in all honesty I don’t know what you are asking me. I am no doctor or whatever (praise god! lol). But I do hope you find the help yo need.
        The only thing I can say that if I was in the same situation I would look outside the mainstream.
        (Maybe eft or tat, there is a lot, and i mean a lot of good stuff out there!)


    • Galacar, I would love to chat with you. I’m in a grad program in Counseling and I agree with lots of what you said! My email is river261 at hotmail.

  60. I just saw your YouTube video about the Mental Health Industry. You would do so many oppressed, discriminated people out here who are a product of this stigmatized Mental Health Industry’s control over our society a good deal of support.

    We need you to stand up and speak out. Call Marsha Linehan and go out on a speaking tour all over the country and stand up for the oppressed clients of this social ill control of that which is called: The Mental Health Field.

    I was never able to really talk in therapy. I need someone that I feel equal to and a therapy session is not an equal ground. The therapist holds all the power and legal protection. I find it absolutely disgusting.

    We need you to speak out all over the country about what is going on. When the creator of Dialetic Behavior Therapy (Marsha Linehan) is out on YouTube stating and warning the population if you are a Borderline Personality NEVER to tell anyone especially if you are in a hospital setting—-this is very alarming.

    I had just written a scenario of how the world would look to a Cancer patient if they were treated like these MH patients are treated for having cancer. They are treated like dregs of the Earth.

    As well, these therapists, psychotherapists, etc. should have to take the medication they prescribe their clients. Then they would understand how one is not able to function on a day to day basis.

  61. Daniel
    You honor your creator by holding to that which was created and live as yourself…no more…no less. Long live Daniel!

    • I couldn’t have said it any better. Daniel thank you for being you. You inspire me on my own personal journey of being who I was really created to be.

  62. Hello Daniel, I, like many, just discovered your channel a few days ago. I have watched all of your videos and have become interested in all the topics you have talked about. I always thought that maybe all of our traumas are created during childhood, which tends to show in adulthood. You really helped me see things with a better perspective in those topics. I appreciate people that can analyze the way you do about one’s self. I am also a person who has “anxious reactions,” many of them, which had lead me to create my own self therapy to heal from my traumas (still in the process as well). Thank you for sharing your perspectives in many different ways, you are really helping people and making a difference.

  63. I googled your name because someone on a Richard Grannon video recommended you. After reading your introduction I am chilled. I could have written it about myself. Once I “figured things out”, linking childhood trauma and my attachment issues, I created boundaries, removed NPD’s from my life, educated myself, attended a local support group (Reclaiming Your Identity), stayed single and celibate. I understand that I need to be alone, and only when I am complete within myself will I be ready for a partner. I don’t believe in casual dating because it always leads to casual sex. Sex is not casual for me. I have focused my energy on ecological restoration in combination with the restoration of my soul. Mindfulness, meditation, exercise, school, work: routines that fill my day. I am a botanist, a natural resource land manager, a forester, an ecologist, a GIS analyst, and a water quality specialist. I restore ecosystems for a living. I hike. I continuously recommend people reconnect with Nature, and am on the Board of Directors of a local, nationally accredited forest preschool. Life is finally good. I look forward to listening to your videos in the coming days.

    • “a water quality specialist. I restore ecosystems for a living.”

      Beautifull! Are you aware of the works of Victor Schauberger?

  64. Daniel,
    I just discovered your Youtube channel. Thank you for posting your video on why you quit being a therapist. I went as far as to receive my Master’s Degree in Counseling and have been licensed as a therapist intern in California, but I haven’t pursued my internship hours and full licensure. There were things I experienced as a therapist during my practicum and internship that caused me to question the direction I was going. I too did not like the “rules” I had to live by as a therapist. There were things that were not quite right about them. To an extent I have felt like I wasted my time and money pursuing something that I didn’t want to finish, but your video made me feel so much better about my decision to stop. The points you brought out were spot-on. I have more peace just knowing that someone else understood and felt the same way I did regarding the therapy world.

  65. Hi Daniel,
    My name is Eddie and at age 69 I feel ready to journal about childhood trauma. Better late than never, i say. i have written things down sporadically over the years, including some dreams, but would like to make a more concentrated effort. One thing I’m wondering about: do you see an advantage to writing on paper with pen as opposed to using MS Word and writing on my PC? If you have any opinion at all about this, i’d like to hear it.
    Thanks so much for your answer and I want you to know that i get a lot out of your videos and i appreciate the vulnerability i see in them, as well as the honesty.

    • eddie—-i mostly write by computer now, but originally i wrote by hand in a journal. i still like both…. worth experimenting to see what feels more comfortable to you! greetings—-daniel

      • EDDIE,

        If computers were around when I was Recovering from my Nervous Breakdown 35 years ago and I’d recorded my Dreams on computer I’D STILL BE MINING THESE DREAMS FOR INFORMATION!!

        Daniel’s spot on in his recommendation!

  66. Hi Daniel,
    I Just found your youtube channel and glad I did. You remind me of me as far as wanting to be myself and then when I am I then worry what people think ughhhh. I too see those people who are the “ships” that break through the ice and don’t seem to care what anyone thinks (good for them). Just hearing you talk about it helps me feel a little more relaxed. Thank you for being honest.

  67. Dear Daniel,
    Firstly I originally wrote to you June 6, 2016 here and asked you about your influences, whereupon you generously cited some as well as noting the importance of writers. Could you illuminate which authors of fiction and even fimmakers inspired you?
    Secondly, I would like to echo the support and validation of so many here who have found in your candid and illuminating self discovery inspiration for their own healing. You will surely have heard from many who are responding to your ground-breaking work, but I would suspect that there are a great many more from whom you will never hear from but who you’ve profoundly touched.
    Finally, in a recent video you spoke of criticisms regarding your notion that parents need healing before having children. The criticism suggested that human beings would die off if they followed your suggestion. In my opinion that criticism is spurious nonsense. In fact responsible and sensible approaches to authentic parenting would perhaps point to adoption of parent-less children and building sustainable wellness-focused societies BEFORE narcissistically engaging in irresponsible reproduction, especially in light of the environmental impact that 8 billion people has for the earth.
    I also your recent predictions found here to be relevatory:

    Keep up the great work.

    • Hello Mark,
      I also find Daniel’s insight’s profoundly confirming. Still, I just wanted to mention that although some people should definitely not have children, birthing more people onto this illusory planet is really not going to hurt anything. Are you not glad that your parent’s birthed you, even if you were contaminated by their unresolved trauma?

      We humans have been created with an innate ability to absorb trauma—not to say this is a “good” thing, but rather to say that our Creator knows that we will have to suffer while in this dimension of existence and has instilled in us the capacity to do so.

      In terms of population growth, too many bodies is really not the underlying problem. It is, firstly, a lack of respect for the earth’s limited resources, which is merely a reflection of the lack of respect for our deepest self, and secondly, because the worldview has become ridiculously materially-oriented it has lost its spiritual compass, has become morally unbalanced, and has consequently become terrified of death. In my view (perhaps erroneous) this insidious fear of death prevents people from surrendering to whatever illness has come upon them and saying no thank you to the host of expensive and not very effective medical interventions that might prolong every second of one’s life for as long as possible when it just might be in the “world’s” best interest to get off, so to speak, and make room for the next person to get on

      • In many cases of cancer chemotherapy drugs kill the person much faster than if they did nothing but the patient can’t face their death and want any hope at all of Healing. Doctors prescribe even though they know there is no chance let’s say as in pancreatic or liver cancer. Patients don’t know better or can’t face the facts. They die sooner than if they had faced facts and decided to live as well as possible what they have left.

        • yes—I hope that if my demise is through cancer (I’ve always felt that melanoma would be the most likely disease to get me), that I have enough faith to just let nature take its course and forgo all of the mostly fear-placating “remedies”
          —thank you, Harriet, for your reciprocal feelings

          • May the holy Spirit be with you, to comfort you and gift you with strength according to the empowerment you gave to others already.

            • Yes! Ben! I pray fervently that the Holy Spirit assist and empower me as well–thank you for your lovely response

        • So much to say here, but I won’t,

          But are people aware that the 3rd cause of death in
          hospitals is, wait for it,… medical treatment!

          That;’s right. ‘medicine’ is a death machine.

          sorry, but I say it how it is.

  68. Hello
    I am now a student in a Master program in europe for clinical psychology – on my way to be a therapist. My current dilemma is that on the one hand I feel a desire to create all kinds of stuff (recorded songs, drawings and even video skits) and put them out there (facebook, soundcloud etc), with their content not always being very agreeable or mainstream. On the other hand, I don’t feel I can be out there like that as I need to have a therapist persona, meaning that if clients see my stuff they will see me acting stupid, or expressing in ways which might seem not so soft, or accepting. Its a big issue and I find it hard to even verbalize what is the problem. But it is essential the feeling that i cannot simply put my art out there because I need to maintain a more sterile public persona, as to give my clients a feeling of safety.
    I might have lots of false beliefs here about the world and about the field of therapy, and I am aware that it is changing and that therapists are not the aloof, mysterious figures they tried to present themselves as, like it was in the past. And yet, there IS some real dilemma here.
    Any perspective will be appreciated – even one that only strengthens my concern.

    Thank you

    • i’m curious what others have to say about this. me, i started putting stuff out publicly (unconventional essays, then later videos) after i’d been a therapist for five years. it was freeing to be able to be my creative self, but very stressful many times. and sometimes i lost clients over it….. and sometimes colleagues were very critical. i didn’t like that. but mostly, many clients i had appreciated the fact that i was a real person — even some who strongly did not agree with what i was saying. at least they knew who they were dealing with, and it raised my credibility in their eyes, because they knew i was much less likely to lie to them and be a fake person….. daniel

      • Hi Daniel, I have been viewing some of your more recent YouTube videos – Why I quit Being a Therapist, Breaking from Your Parents, Healthy Versus Unhealthy Love, 20 Predictions, On Anxiety. It takes a lot of courage to speak out so forthrightly and truthfully about your experience, and I have to say I totally agree with “everything” you share on all of these topics. I have been on a healing journey for over 25 years, and have been in therapy for at least 15 years. I recently participated in a Trauma Program at a hospital that focuses on Women’s Needs, and I have to say, I almost got re-traumatized by the experience. They really do not know what they are doing, and lack any substantial understanding on how to heal trauma. I have cultivated a lot of awareness and understanding through my own research and self-education, and self-understanding of my own experience and feelings, and I have to say, what you share is completely true in all of these videos, and as a result feel validated and legitimized in mine, which makes me feel sane and that I can trust myself. As a result, I feel that I am becoming clearer of what has happened to me, and clearer about what I need to do to help myself. I experienced a lot of what you share about the therapeutic relationship, and I understand that what is needed is the kind of presence and support that you say you provided to your clients. I feel like you are a trailblazer, and that your speaking out and sharing what you have learned honestly without censoring really helps those of us who have had similar experiences and feel so unsupported, invalidated and pathological zed by the medical system, and many people in mainstream society who are still in denial of their own trauma. This has caused me to feel helpless, powerless and not in my right mind (insane). I turn to your videos often for ongoing support and validation. Please continue as you are. Of course, a lot of people who are still in denial in the psychological system are not going to like it. But you already know this. I hope to be such an advocate as I reclaim my own personal power, and ability to assert my truth, and become more of an activist for the Truth.

        • I can echo Francesca’s sentiments. Thanks Francesca for putting your thoughts on paper. And Daniel, keep up the good work. I frequently go back to your youtube videos. They have been, and continue being, extremely helpful.

        • I only read the very last sentence of the above comment and I love it—but I must add Truth has a “razored-jaw.” I think we need to converse about this aspect more—Daniel Mackler has conveyed some quite incisive (no pun intended) ideas about the “discomfort” of truth on youtube—

      • Hi Daniel,
        I’m in a similar predicament as Iftah. I got my master’s not too long ago in counseling and am currently looking for work. However, I do comedy on the side and am concerned about posting anything related to it on social media for fear of not having boundaries and for being seen as a fake. I would like to work on my license, but fear that it’ll be difficult for me to pull off comedy and counseling at once. I love doing it, but I don’t know. I’m concerned that I may eventually burnout. I give you credit for doing what you do. 🙂 Any advice would be appreciated.

        • hi M.
          you know, i think the world needs just as many good comedians as it does good therapists. and maybe more of the former than the latter…hmm….. i have actually put up some humorous videos and essays — perhaps not exactly “comedy,” but in the realm of it — and i’m so glad i have. they leaven the bread, as it were. the thing is, i felt much more free to share other sides of myself publicly after i quit working in clinics with colleague and went into private practice..away from their judgmental and stuffy eyes. and in my early years of putting stuff on the web i did for a while use a pseudonym on my website so i could feel safer putting stuff up. it did help, though eventually i said “screw it” and i just used my name. meanwhile, i don’t know what kind of comedy you do — but maybe something of what i said applies…. sending greetings–daniel

          • It is so refreshing to hear these concerns! I am a therapist and my colleagues have discussed this a great deal. I usually say, come on-can’t our clients accept that we are humans and have personalities and lives (and other talents we really need to foster as part of self care?) to which they all replied – “no! They want us to be (insert who here…mom, dad, etc). I have decided to leave the field as well and have been returning to my creativity after taking a year to recover from intense and scary burnout. A quote that has helped me make my decision by Anne Wilson Schaef: “therapy helps people adjust to living in a sick system. It is destructive to humans and the planet.”
            I’m grateful to be in all of your company and encourage you to keep exploring and trust yourselves to find your way.

      • Hi Daniel,
        I am not sure how to start a new thread on the blog, so I reply to your latest entry.
        I have watched your youtube videos about divorcing your family, choosing your therapist, why I am not a therapist anymore.
        I agree with pretty much all of it.
        I think therapy can be used initially as a way to resolve big psychological problems, then can became a way to help you grow, analyze and think.

        Though paying for one way therapy can be expensive and can make clients egocentric, by getting accustomed to obtain attention and not give it back and it can drain the therapist after a while.

        I had some free one way therapy when a was 20 (I am 52) at a LGBTQ center in London, but I did notice that the therapist had most of the knowledge and the client was vulnerable to damage from the therapist. I also did not like the fact that I was the only one really opening up and that I knew very little about the therapist, as a person.

        So I enrolled on a counseling course, to learn at least the basic, so I could better judge the work of the therapist and more actively participate in the process.
        The following year a decided to join another counseling class, as I love the subject and found it helpful in understanding myself, others and life.

        The course tuned up to be a Co-Counseling course. (CCI, co-counseling international) Run by a CCI teacher. The counseling was base on Carl Rogers ideas and Humanist philosophy, especially client centered, and run without leaders, and based on finding a consensus.

        It was similar to the standard counseling, at the end you could join a co-co community of counselors, exchange free therapy sessions, by taking turn as client and counselor, join groups, and events.

        I repeated the fundamental course the following year, but this time it was with a Re-evaluation Co-co teacher (, this was a leadership run co-co community. I also joined this community. I preferred it cos having a leaderships, it was running more efficiently,

        For the following 29 years I carried on doing co-co session with a variety of co-counselors.

        The community though it is better suited to people with lighter issues. For deeper issues like psychosis ect, it is best finding a standard therapist, and then later when better do Co-co.

        Most of the ideas and practices are ok, but as it happens with most institutions, it got eventually infiltrated by Cluster B personalities, so the community has problems of authoritarianism from leaders ect. I advise to avoid counseling with leaders, getting too involved with the leadership or community and take the theory and practices with a pinch of salt. Co cousel with regular co-counselors, not too enthusiastic about RC.

        So Daniel if you are interested, or anyone else reading my message, we could exchange some sessions over phone, Skype, Hangout, Messanger, Snapchat, IMO, Whatsapp, Viber, ect and see how it goes.

        I can send you a fundamental course literature, so you can get acquainted with it.

        I find it a great way to make “a sort of co-co friends” too, mind you we have to respect the confidentiality rule, to keep it safe and not messy, and not socialize outside sessions.


        • hi adrian — thanks for your comment. to start a new comment thread…unfortunately you have to scroll down to the bottom of the page…ah! meanwhile, good to hear what you share. i actually know a bit about co-counseling. i’ve had a few friends involved in it over the years. also, in one of my books (“a way out of madness”) one of the chapters is written by a longtime co-counseling person, janet foner. she actually co-founded the mental patient advocacy group MindFreedom International — and from what i understand from her co-counseling could be very useful for psychiatric survivors… i’ve actually never met her in person, though — she was closer with the book’s other editor, who was also more involved in Mindfreedom. meanwhile, thanks for the offer. i’m in a different headspace than that right now, but maybe others will be interested. sending greetings! daniel

      • Hallo Daniel,
        Just reading Dr Irving Yalom’s book ‘The Gift of Therapy’, and he is squarely on your side regarding such output the way I understand him.
        Do you have a reading list you recommend? I saw Irv was one of the others you recommended in your youtube video critiquing the psychotherapy profession.
        Much thanks for your work, slowly going through everything, and finding it very insightful and fascinating.
        Kind regards,
        Philipp, Zurich/Switzerland

        • hi phillip — cool. i read the book about 15 years ago, and i liked it, though if my memory holds he said you needed medication or hospitalization for mania…and i don’t agree with that. is my memory right?! just curious. greetings! daniel

          • Yalom takes a pragmatic stance, with a leaning towards therapy over medicatiins. However I think he does not not prescribe medication, and may not even treat such patients.

    • Hi Daniel. I’m a trained psychotherapist and faced a similar dilemma of how public to be with my own struggles with life and limerence (addictive romantic infatuation) after setting up a self help forum and making some videos for suffers of this condition. The forum has grown in 3 years to 1500 members plus a lot of lurkers. I felt my initial resistance was partly due to the shame of my addictive behaviour. I had also been taught in my training to hide behind my credentials so I could be a blank screen for the projections. I then decided there was value in others seeing that even a trained therapist grapples with these very human dilemmas and no one has all their stuff sorted. I prefer a relationship with my clients that is more equal, although continually grapple with when is it appropriate to disclose something of my own struggle and ensuring its always in the client’s benefit whenever I do disclose something relevant and personal.

      I admire and respect the courage you have shown with the openness around your own story. I regularly link to your videos and blogs on our site as I feel the origins of limerence lay in the early life attachment trauma and poor parenting.

      • Hi David, I suggest you check out Pia Mellody’s work. As I understand, addictions like yours are indeed the result of childhood trauma, which often leave people dependent on external resources rather than internal ones, for emotional balance. Maybe you’ll also be interested in my videos.

        This is one of my major gripes with the training of psychotherapists, that so many, despite all the proper diplomas and licenses, do not even know about the basics, and thus end up continuing to suffer for years themselves, along with not having the tools to be able to effectively help the people they want to help.

        All the best.

    • Hey Iftah, Daniel, and all,
      If you want to have a professional looking persona, yet show your creative works, then do both! It is clear you have thought carefully about the benefits/advantages and disadvantages/potential negatives of all options you feel open to you. What I do recommend is to have a professional persona with your registered/licensed name either in full or your initials and surname, for example A. N. Other (relevant qualifications, education levels, accreditations etc). This can be your smart, clean, professional, knowledgable, clinical, sterile, and ‘paper/document name’/birth name, ‘work’ self. You then can have a ‘creative works’ self. If you pick something that is special to you, or a nickname, or something you feel much better fits you, then have that as your expressive, eccentric, eclectic, contradictory, artistic, outspoken, bold, seemingly unafraid, controversial ‘creative’ self. Sadly, ‘Phoenix’ is not my paper name, but I feel much better and comfortable showing my authentic self when referred to by (or modified/similar versions) of that name. This is because to me it is a symbol of several things, and therefore helps me to resist some negative/maladaptive practices as well as at times being less avoidant and more outgoing. I am also less afraid of repercussions regarding providing an honest but moderate comment about something, or showing my creative ventures in the forum of public critiquing otherwise known as the internet! Those people I know in person, knows it’s me that has written/drawn/sung/made/felt etc what they’ve seen, and people seem to see a great difference between the two types of people. I have issues to work on with regarding my name and past trauma, but I would caution you to the potential of becoming compartmentalised in a way similar to disassociation, and thus starting your journey and/or self-therapy over again. I am unsure how to make sure that there is one persona but wearing different hats, as opposed to two personas who might or might not know each other. However, my option would give you two clear spaces and a response of either ‘that is [describe name of creative persona]. How can that be connected to me?’ or ‘Yes, that is something I indulge in when not in an appointment, supervision, training, doing personal research to keep my knowledge up. According to what research I have read, professionals and people in general are more productive, have less sick time, and make far less errors when they maintain their health in a holistic way’. As someone who has been both sides of the fence, I prefer having a therapist who I know is a human rather than this sterile science thing. I find that I can express more of value to them in a shorter time. I tend to use the term ‘teflon coated’ for that distance between therapist/doctor and patient. However, should you watch the movie ‘Patch Adams’, then you might understand why I prefer the relationship of human to human, without the teflon coating. Infact, they both are experts. The therapist has the knowledge of various options and methodologies to assist the patient but limited knowledge as to what is best and how to apply them to this individual. The patient has the knowledge of themselves and their conditions but they don’t know what options there are to help themselves heal, or what best one to use, and how to do the methodologies. Please note this applies in most cases, not all (with people, mental health, and the human brain being involved, there is a great big huge dollop of ‘it depends’ mixed with ‘hmmm’!!).

      Hope that might assist you! I wish you luck, and to take care,

    • REAL people are the most beautifull people to me.

      If a therapist dances akwardly , but he does tt, I have the utmost respect.

      And how you can learn people to ‘open up’ if you are ‘closed’ and hence ‘not seen’ yourself?

      Being yourself is an invitation to another person to be his or her self.

      well, my two cents. Hope it is worth something. 😉

    • Hi, Iftah,

      I am of two minds about this. As a veteran of therapy, I am at middle-age now seeing someone who practices non-traditional (energy) psychology in combination with traditional talk therapy.

      Although his boundaries are sometimes looser than I am comfortable with, I have come to feel that in the beginning of our therapy, I did not have sufficient ego strength to withstand what felt like an intrusive/traumatic experience.

      However, now that I have healed somewhat, I feel that I have the ability to work through my feelings over these perceived boundary crossings/violations, and that this is a part of being in the world where people often don’t behave as I would prefer. 🙂

      My initial reaction was, simply use a pseudonym. But as an artist, that would be antithetical to my purpose for making my art.

      I’m sorry for your dilemma, and I hope my perspective has helped you in some way.

  69. Dear Daniel,

    I have seen your documentaries about open dialogue and “take these broken wings” and I am absolutely fascinated. It’s full of hope and good sense.

    I have a brother who’s paranoid schizophrenic, he is 32. I would like to find someone sharing the kind of ideas Open Dialogue or Dr Breggin team does. He doesn’t want to take his drugs anymore, and I understand that, but it’s very hard for us to find therapists that are ok to follow him without the first condition of being medicated.

    Thanks to your work and your sharing with the therapeutic community, would you have some places or people to advice in Belgium or France ?

    I thank you for your work and your help,
    All the best,

  70. Dear Daniel,

    I just saw your critique of Alice Miller on YouTube and thought it was brilliant. There are a few questions I would like to ask you.

    Which is the best book of Alice Miller’s to read regarding her criticism of psychoanalysis?

    Why do you no longer practise psychotherapy?

    How do you know if you are seeing the right/wrong therapist?

    I would really appreciate your views on these queries. Thank you for your time. Keep up the great work.

    All the best,

  71. Hi, Daniel! I need a book recommendation.

    I’m currently doing self-therapy for my mental health problems and what I need to work through is my childhood. What I’m doing now is reading different books about trauma and abuse and trying to find what would resonate inside me so I could remember. However there are many books concentrated on spanking and sexual abuse. And I believe that my abuse were mostly emotional (with sparks of sexual and emotional) so I need to be pulled into right direction.

    My context:
    Dad – weak man, alcoholic, with split off anger concerning his wife, submissive, passive-agressive
    Mom – major abuser and tyrant histrionic features, neediness, insecurity, severe anxiety, domination, manipulation, grandeur stuff.

    So if anybody remember cases like that described somewhere – it would be a great help for me.

    • Just my two cents, you might want to read Transforming Yourself: Becoming who you want to be, by Steve Andreas. Focusing on the trauma only cements it, as we recently learned from neuroplasticity, start focusing on who you want to become, and build new paths.

        • I think the word “focus” should be explored. The trauma that one sustains in one’s life usually unfortunately, gets repressed and over time this can cause too much splitting! It is not about “focus” to me, it is about just letting it exist consciously so that we do not project it onto innocent “others.”
          Does it not make perfect sense that if we feel like it is OK and even healthy to look back and cherish fond life experiences, that we should likewise honor and not dissociate from the traumatic experiences also? One cannot truly learn from the vicissitudes that one will face in life if one is dissociating from them.

          • I regard experiences I’ve had in my life as just training. I won’t say that I didn’t suffer during my Nervous Breakdown BUT GEES I FOUND OUT A LOT!!
            I have heard other people talk about their childhood experiences and I get the impression that they regret their experience. I don’t – I realise that it was difficult but I also understand that I PASSED THIS TEST WITH FLYING COLOURS Humans are really good at solving problems and I understand that everyone has their own unique way of managing the situation. In my particular case I’ve learnt that I can withstand lots of PUNISHMENT with no need to defend myself and I actually do very little.
            I still remember the incident which indicated that I should DO DREAMS. I was in Art Therapy Class and the Jungian psychologist interpreted a fellow-patient’s Dream. I understood the links between the fellow-Patient’s Dream , the Interpretation of that Dream by the Jungian psychologist AND how I took this fellow-Patient to be.
            20 years later I was talking to this fellow-Patient and he told me that he’d been in a coma for 5 days. I WENT STRAIGHT HOME AND GOOGLED Near-Death Experiences!


    • Maybe it is too far out for you, but I certainly recommend EFT and TAT has healing modalities. I have personal witnessed trauma healing within 10 minutes. It doesn’t always work that fast, but a way faster then traditional psychotherapy.And about ‘cementing’. If you use these healing techniques the ‘edge’ or the ‘pain’ goes away from the trauma, hence you can see more clearly at the trauma and there won’t be any ‘cementing’. As an example look up EFT for VETS (war veterans). and see how fast their trauma’s healed! Good luck with everything.



  72. Before I proceed with my question, I would like to express my gratitude for all the great work you’ve done for the children of the world, and the child within myself. I would consider myself a childrens right’s activist and I’m also a big fan of Stefan Molyneux, and Steven Fransenn/Summerstone was my therapist for a time.

    I seem to be stuck in a dilemna of whether to go hitchiking and explore more of the world whilst I’m still young, or get some consistency and qualification, achieve my musical/theatre/acivism career ambitions and maybe go hitchiking later once I’ve got some savings, mental stability and health. My parts are stuck in a heavy dilemna about this, and I am stuck in a state of indecision, unable to commit to ether extreme, moving from place to place with lots of stuff in my car. different parts are attached to different visions for my life…

    I currently have very little money, but I have a car and music gear, which if I sold could get me close to 3000 AUD.

    Then with just a bag of clothes, and an acoustic guitar. I could then hitchhike around australia wwoofing on organic farms in exchange for food and accomodation. or I could go out and busk and try and make some money with just an acoustic. Seeing more of australia could inspire my songwriting, help reduce my OCD over hygene and my attatchment to my music gear, health suppliments, essential oils, which at times can be a hassle since I tend to float around unable to commit to anything at the moment. I often lose things and it sucks living half out of my car.

    I’m still pretty minimalist by conventional standard. I can fit all my possessions in a station wagon. I’ve already explored the countryside and done some wwoofing, I’ve even flown to melbourne twice, lived off busking etc. have I explored enough for now? I’ve always had my music gear with me, which is both my biggest love but also a massive hindrance to lug around… it may feel good to let go for a while, But I’m quite attached to my music gear and dreams. If I hitchike, I might feel like I’m floating around achieving nothing, even if it might be theraputic for a time…

    I always end up coming back from my travel adventures running out of money, and have to rely back on my traumatic family or hippie drug using friends.

    My main concern with hitching is that I have allergies, and I need a good night sleep.
    Staying in hostels, dirty bugalows, and random peoples houses may not be good for my health. I’m also super traumatized, I have an ACE of 10. I tend to be very suggestible to the habits of others… So if I’m hitching with someone who smokes, I’ll probably smoke too.

    I will be relying on potentially traumatized people who may bring me into their world, and due to lack of finances, I may have to stay and live with people who I may want to simply run away from…

    My teeth are in need of fixing, and I have gut problems and I need to stay away from certain foods. I’ll just have acoustic,no music gear or band. so the songwriting will be limited by the lack of layers in the sound.

    If get a consistent job, study for a few months to become a sleep technician (piss easy overnight job where I have plenty of free time to write, produce music, play videogames and do some yoga.

    I can get my own super flat up in the hills away from traffic and noise. establish a home recording studio. have all my health supplements and dietary needs in place. get a good doctor and therapist. Get all my indigo velvet suits made (I will only wear my custom made suits), start an 80s night and get an awesome band together, play at jungle love. My Studio, The Perfect Zen healing space.

    Then once I have decent savings, some recordings and have done a lot of self work. Then I can hitchike around the world. Only staying in clean, pristine hotel rooms alone. I can find a beautiful part of the world that I think is “perfect”. I can start my own self therapy/healing retreat and invite young soul searchers like myself to come stay and detox from all the trauma of the world.

    What do you think? there’s so many more factors and possibilities, parts and considerations that I haven’t yet gone into, but I don’t want to write 100 pages.

    Thanks again Daniel,

    William Wyatt

    • Just like you I had fear of contamination, along with many other problems. And I also used to admire Molyneux. Have a look at my YouTube channel (click on my name), the videos from 2017 go into exactly what was causing my problems, along with what helped resolve them. Basically, the work of Peter Levine, Pia Mellody, Stephen Porges, and a few others, and then support from friends and family. I hope this helps you too!

    • hi william,

      i resonate with some of what you write here. i am a 24 year old with musical/activist/art aspirations as well. i am also quite traumatized. i travelled/explored for the past few years since i graduated from college and from my experience i will tell you that for myself, it was something i was making myself do because i thought it was interesting, “the right thing” “good for me” etc… whereas i did not actually enjoy it at all. the only thing i got out of it was the knowledge that it was a bad idea which has now led me to therapy where i am trying to get in touch with the emotions and bodily self i’ve disconnected from my entire life due to my relationships with my parents.

      i don’t know you, but i have the sense that you might be in a similar situation. the way you talk about your future plans in such exact detail tells me that you might be planning your life in a kind of ego-oriented way without considering what your body wants and needs.

      i would recommend staying in one place and doing self-therapy work. however, i don’t know you and i could be wrong. also, no one can give you advice on these matters. you need to figure out which of your ideas and desires are yours and which came from outside sources and will not actually benefit who you are.

      i hope this helps


  73. Hi Daniel,

    Found your youtube videos very insightful. My journey of truth seeking and maturity has been very similar to your own . I looked up your name and it did not surprise me to learn of it’s Hebrew Meaning: The meaning of the name Daniel is: God is my Judge.

    I have no idea if you consider yourself “Christian” but it doesn’t really matter because you are a disciple of truth and therefore you *ARE* a disciple of Christ. One does not have to participate in modern Christian institutions to be a follower of Christ . The true body of Christ is found in people who are committed to living a life of growth and truth.

    I reside in LI New York and it’s nice to make your acquaintance through YouTube. I appreciate your virtuous nature as a fellow human being so I just thought I’d say hello and send you a high five!

    May God continue to guide and bless you.

    Warm regards:-)

  74. Dear Daniel,

    I am a mother of a Son diagnosed with substance induced psychosis…….was clean for a year and relapsed once again in MARCH, 2017… We live in Mumbai city in INDIA…….i happen to see your video and looking for therapy for my son in Mumbai…….Can you guide me… he is already under a psychiatrist who insists on conventional therapy… fact i had to institutionalize him…..where can i find help in mumbai…who do i go to… there someway you can help……..

  75. Hi Daniel, long time fan here, particularly of your films to raise awareness of the far better treatment options than psych meds. I’ve been an occasional critic of some of your views as well.

    Here is a mini-series detailing what I learned in healing my childhood trauma:

    I hope you’ll enjoy it, and I’m interested in any comments you have!

  76. hello i keep been repercented with the same pattern. i suffer from abandant unloved and unwonted. now i am 24 and has happed so many times in y life., i need this childhood trauma healed or its going to keep replaying in my reality now. it has happed again n now in same situation> its bringing this up so i can b healed. now i hasve the conscious awarness what is going on,. but i feel like i dont no what to do next. i am so connfussed. what are my next steps in changing this so i can create a reality with is alined to my higher self ?

  77. Hi Daniel,

    What a fresh of air to find your videos by a complete happenstance.
    You seem incredibly a gifted human being even with your extreme views of not having children until people healed.

    I find you fascinating.

    I also came out of one of the worst childhood trauma: spitting, biting, pinching, hair pulling, yelling, name calling, brute physical beating…you name it , I had it but yet with a long, honest, deep self-therapy of 20 plus years, I can honestly say I am grounded on planet earth. My spirit was not broken or as you said, I had extremely strong motivation to heal…so strong that being brutally honest with myself did not freak me out…if anything, I love knowing my dark side…and I revel of course on my light side.

    You mentioned you live in NYC. I live in Toronto. I was born in Africa. I am visiting NYC with my husband the Easter weekend (Apr 14 to 16)….I am gonna throw it out there…but I would love to meet you…I am free the whole weekend except Sat (April 14, 2017) we have tickets for Sleep No More. I do not know why I need to meet you…but I think just talking to you will be amazing. I do not do this sort of thing. I am not into gurus or crazy retreats. I am a normal person who saw your message and thought wow! If I could just meet this man once …and I already planning of visiting NYC and was surprised you may live there…
    I am considering of going to Psychotherapy school…midlife career change (I am 46). I found your videos while I was researching. I have not been to therapy much at all but I feel I like to reach out to people to teach (if I can) how to self-therapy…how to mirror and get out of the loop.

    You touched my life…I watched a lot of your videos on YouTube and read a lot of your blogs over the years…I am such in awe of you. All the best to you Daniel. You are gifted and I am not saying that as compliment…just a plain statement.

  78. Hi Daniel,

    I want to thank you for the work you have done with regards to your understanding of childhood trauma and what is required to heal it. I often listen to you video on Denial of the Family System when I need support and reassurance that what I am going through (i.e. pain and grieving) is necessary for me to go through in order to heal. It provides me with the courage I need to continue, and reminds of how to approach my healing process with greater understanding, kindness, patience and opportunities of goodness by practising good self care. Lately, I have been experiencing a lot of pain associated with the neglect that I experienced growing up. I am trying to refrain from medicating myself through the use of sugar and coffee (which seems to take the edge off my pain). I have been well for quite awhile but today the pain was unbearable. It’s incredible to know that this pain has been lying submerged in my unconsciousness for my whole life, and that there was no way I could have endured it as a child. So here I am surrendering tot he fact that I need to grieve my losses of not having my childhood needs met, and also needing for learn how to have these needs meet through myself and other healthy relationships. Would really love to be part of a network associated with your work so that we can support each other through this sometimes gruelling process. Kindest regards….

  79. Hi Daniel, I saw you on a Youtube video and I was profoundly touched to see how caring and courageous you are. Persons like you give me hope that one day all of humanity will be awake and empowered. The conventional behavioral health system is broken by design. As long as Big Pharma and Big Agra (it’s really just one big industry) continue to be allowed by our governments to further their self-interest agenda, we shall have little hope for a free healthy world. But you are right, the change must come from the people, not the professionals. If more professionals provide testimonials, the balance scale will inevitably tip towards justice as the majority (We The People) will rise in true freedom. Keep up the great work and may God always keep you safe and happy!

  80. Hi Daniel, I saw one of your videos in which you said that nobody who is ever truly healing commits suicide a while ago and I have found it helpful through my journey and I thought it was a brave statement to make and probably very accurate, I drew a diagram that I wanted to post but don’t seem to be able of a human trauma cycle and what I think creates suicide….ill see if I can explain it, it’s like a triangle and so bottom left being birth labelled happiness and truth > (going up) parental trauma and false lessons > sadness and depression > dissociation > (at the top) the appearance of ‘happiness’ (then back down) > getting real > sadness and depression > processing of trauma and unlearning of false lessons > happiness and truth. Then arrows diverting as the medical model from the second sadness and depression back to dissociation…Pretty simplistic I know and you may have already something similar in your book I shamefully have yet to read but it’s clear to me that the desperation and confusion of repeating that top section of the cycle is the cause of suicide…I doubt that anyone truly following through with the feelings of sadness and depression to their cause and conclusion ends up this way….anyway hope that made some sense, keep on being awesome, much respect and I hope our paths do cross some day 🙂

  81. Hi Daniel,

    I’m hoping you can confirm something for me.

    After several years of essentially devoting my life to healing and growth, I’ve come to the realization that many people in the world (who haven’t committed to healing) are operating primarily as false selves/masks, while their authentic selves are completely buried in the unconscious (along with lots of emotional pain from childhood and possibly adolescence).

    I’ve also come to realise that in order to reclaim our authentic selves and begin the lifelong journey of growing into who we really, the main thing required is finding ways to feel and process our unconscious pain.

    Do you agree?


    • I’m doing something similar to what you describe Jay, in terms of devoting myself to healing fully from emotional trauma and growth. I have also come to the similar conclusion as you in that most people are still trapped in various degrees of unconsious emotional pain cycles/patterns. I say this as someone who was also one of those people for many years! I agree 100% with your post and it resonated deeply with me.

      • Hi Natasha. Thanks for your reply to my comment and for sharing your thoughts and experience. I actually find a lot of solidarity from reading your comment! Knowing that you have reached the same conclusion with regard to people is very affirming for me. So is knowing that you too are walking the path of healing and growth. It’s quite rare that I meet or interact with anyone who has this awareness. Nice to make your acquaintance! 🙂

        • Thanks for the reply Jay and good to meet you too! Yes it can be a lonely path to tread at times and I’m also glad to interact with someone else on a similar path. I would be interested to disuss in more detail with you what methods you are using etc. I will not put my email address on here due to the nature of it being completely public, but I am happy for it to be passed on to you, if possible, for future correspondence.

            • Hi Jay, I sent you an email a few weeks ago to this address. If you do not wish to reply that is absolutely fine. I wasn’t sure whether the email got through as I didn’t get a response. I simply wanted to know whether you got the email or not.
              My best wishes.

              • Natasha! Thanks for this message. I didn’t see an email from you in my inbox so I assumed you didn’t send one. I’ve just checked my spam and there’s your email!!! I’ll read it and reply asap. Thanks again for this follow-up. Talk soon! 🙂

  82. Happy new year,
    I am sharing with joy and hope a new law in France.
    Finally, parental educative violence physical and psychological is forbidden by law.
    Some scandinavian countries took the lead in 1979…
    I am aware about the huge work requested now to apply this law especially for parents. In fact, I witness too often cruelty from parents toward their children.
    The book 12 steps from trauma to enlightment is a good way to heal for me. I wonder how to share this with the most french parents as possible?

    more details of french about the law link

    • good to hear, Arnaud. thank you for sharing this. hmm, i also wonder how to get the message out more — to french people…hmm….i’m not sure. greetings from new york! daniel

      • I guess Arnaud is a “colleague” of my husband at OVEO, Charles, who also helped on passing this law :-). But I must say, France is really bad among the developed countries in respecting the kids, at the same time, worse than under-developed countries where there are still some good traditions left. Most of the French kids experience severe abandonment at 3-4 months old in their child-care system, as a life starter. It’s quite a nutcase to work on as a population.

    • I am sharing the update about this law against educative violence, which triger sadness, anger and despair of the little child within me expecting to be rescued by laws and please the autority. In fact the article was censored because state lawyers in charge thought it was not relevant with the main goal of the law which very briefly was to reduce fanatism, terorism temptations of french youngs. Obviously, people in charge are unconscious of the origin of violence. From my experience, the roots of violence are deep in the family, all cruelties from parents to their children.
      Anyway, deep change olny come from within…

      more details see

  83. Daniel,
    I recently finished watching all four of your films. Marvelous and beautiful. Thank you so much for creating and sharing them! I have some questions, though.
    1) How did you train the ducks to swim just so? ; )
    2) How did you have my fluffy orange cat without me missing him? (I notice he wasn’t in Take These Broken Wings, so I imagine you miss him and I’m sorry for that.)
    And, most importantly,
    3) Where is MY healing home? I have been trying for years to find a residential place in the States that does good trauma healing work and found crap. Any ideas?
    Thanks again so much, love!

    • greetings eddy—-ah, the ducks were wild…but i quacked nicely at them and hope they swim in a good way for the camera. the orange fluffy cat is franklin — and he went to cat heaven five years ago. he was a great cat!!! warm greetings — and i wish i knew where your healing home is…. i am searching for mine too!!! daniel

  84. Hi Daniel,

    I just stumbled on your video about psychotherapy. Your insights were so on point, and you immediately struck me as a gifted observer of the human condition. As a survivor of multiple severe childhood traumas, I agree with your thesis that the world is awash in trauma and the echoes of it reverberate through people’s lives and is usually unnamed, unanalyzed, and misunderstood. I also see the pathologies in our culture that perpetuate this cycle of trauma.

    Anyway I look forward to exploring your work, but I have one question for you:

    What is your take on the rise of the SJW, safe-space, trigger-warning, victim olympics culture among Millennials? I am deeply troubled by the way the left is eating itself and simultaneously committing intellectual mass-suicide. My guess is that this phenomena is directly related to your thesis about trauma; it seems that a lot of middle-class Millennials were raised in such micro-managed environments that they never learned to cope with ego-blows or conflict, as there was always an authority figure nearby to come to their aid. The way they are trampling freedom of speech and thought with the PC speech codes and other more troubling behavior is mind-boggling. The Yale Halloween incident apparently was only a prelude of what was to come…. Anyway I’d love to hear your thoughts.

    Richmond, Va

    • hi mark — glad to read your post. hmm, i am not sure what to make of the super politically-correct modern world. personally i am not so called by it, though in some circumstances i can be polite if i fear offending people. for example, i just came back from traveling pretty much off-the-grid for six months in south america, and made my share of faux pas — in ways i never expected. i tried to be careful, though — though sometimes it was just hard, especially in another language…… i think the sentiment behind political correctness can often be good, though i think sometimes it can get blown all out of proportion, especially if it’s mixed up with people’s unconscious hurts from childhood. i didn’t hear about the yale halloween incident, but having gone to a very politically correct college (swarthmore) i got very tired of having my thoughts and speech monitored by people whom i thought were pretty stupid much of the time!!! interestingly, i was in colombia for halloween and went to a halloween party where a light-skinned colombian woman (white? mestizo?) was dressed in blackface. it was the first time in my life i had seen someone go in blackface and i was horrified — even scared. people were taking group photos and i did NOT want my picture taken with her. (my background and history have influenced me…) however, i had friends who are very socially conscious who were with me there — people who fight for the rights of indigenous people, are part indigenous, etc. — and they said dressing in blackface for costume parties is pretty normal in colombia and not considered offensive. also, they said that there are parties and festivals where lots of light-skinned people dress in blackface and where black colombians dress in whiteface — and it’s fun for everyone. that was a surprise. big world we live in, lots of diversity and unique perspective. for me, i think it’s good to get out of the little box and see the world, live in it, learn new languages, make friends out there!! greetings—–daniel

      • Hi again Daniel,

        Thanks for your interesting reply! That’s a fascinating story. I think it goes to show that the so-called regressive left’s constant hyper-sensitivity ought to expand its awareness beyond the confines of the narrow evil western colonialism and American slavery narrative that dominates the conversation.

        I will be sure to share this interesting story as proof that blackface isn’t inherently racist. (Recently a law professor was censured for hosting a Halloween party in blackface (btw, that’s such an emotionally loaded term) as an esteemed black medical doctor that was a personal hero of hers. The outrage over this incident was so misdirected and confused as usual.

        Anyway, I’d ask that you keep an eye out for this SJW phenomena as a form of collective Munchausen syndrome or M.S. by proxy. The virtue-signalling, the constant outrage, and victim-narratives seem to be an expression of a diseased mentality that’s got to be reflective of some deeper problem with the way we are raising our kids.

        Another voice in the battle is Jordan Peterson, who is resisting University of Toronto’s forced use of trans pronouns. I think he stands on the side of free expression and freedom of thought. His assertion that the trans-rights movement is riddled with radical Marxists seems on point to me also.

        Anyway, I find it interesting that psychopathology seems to be so prevalent that it creates entire political movements!

  85. Hi Daniel,

    I’m a producer for BBC World Service radio’s flagship news programme Newshour (website below)

    We are talking to Susie Orbach on Monday, because she has just published the series of short radio plays she made for the BBC (which you can listen to here: and I’m trying to find another person to come on with her in discussion. So I’m looking for someone with interestingly different, well-informed views on psychotherapy.

    I would be very interested in hearing your point of view – but two things could rule this out immediately: 1. you’re not interested and/or 2. you’re in the western hemisphere on Monday, as the only time we can do this is 10:00 GMT.

    Is there any chance?

    Best wishes,


  86. Hello,
    I came across a nice song that I think shows perfectly a relationship with a narcissistic mother. I thought I would give the link here, maybe you will enjoy it. It’s from the Disney’s Tangled movie.

  87. Hi Daniel,
    i,ve just recive your DVD with your handwriting wishes. I’m happy about it. Thank you very much 🙂
    I would like to inform you that you are good known person in Poland. A lot of people watch your movi. I’m psychiatrist and got a link to your website from my patients and family of them. First i’ve seen was “Open Dialog”. My team (Community Mental Health Team) have gone through a course of it and then we use to practice.
    Take those broken wings i bought in purpose to show it during our event concerning The World Mental Health Day. I hope that you will not be against this idea because I found note on your web that: UWAGA: Zdecydowałem się umieścić wszystkie moje filmy na Youtube bezpłatnie, ponieważ chcę się nimi podzielić z ludźmi na całym świecie. W dalszym ciągu można je kupić na DVD, nie chcę jednak, aby pieniądze przeszkodziły komukolwiek w odebraniu przesłania. Niech się upowszechnia rewolucja w sektorze zdrowia psychicznego!.
    The show i would like to organize, I would imagine in way like a workshop: with emission and discussion to inspire to reflection. It would be obviously free, no for business.
    Would you like to send a few words for participants? I could translate and read them as a letter from you.

    • hi ewa — sorry for my delayed reply!!! (i was just traveling in south america for a while!!) very happy to hear all that you write!! warm greetings from new york city. dziękuję, daniel

  88. Hey i just found a little part of an interview you did 6 years ago with Joanne Greenberg on your Youtube channel. Right now im writing a seminar paper about her book “I never promised you a rosegarden” and wanted to ask if you have more video material of this interview.
    I would be very grateful if you could reply.

    • hi lisa — alas, i just have that little snippet and my movie ´take these broken wings´—-joanne greenberg is a big part of that. if you go to youtube you can find it — it is free there! wishing you the best, and p.s. joanne greenberg is super-cool!! she also has a website i think you can send her a message there — though i dont know if she gets them, hmm….. greetings—daniel

  89. Hello Daniel!! thanks for all your works!!!
    Do you think it is normal that I get soo angry when I hear someone talking about psychiatry, or calling the psychological problems as “medical conditions”, or when people label everyone who has a psychological problem as a “sick person” or when people talk about the relation between genetics and depression, even the idea of “diagnosis” make me all very angry when I hear about them. Do you think it is normal for a person who is in a journey inside himself, to feel angry about these stuff?? don’t you think these that these thoughts are totally wrong and totally unhumane and totally different from what the reality of the psyche is, and that it is normal to get angry towards them?? I feel like these thoughts want to make people crazy, take their feelings and humanity from them, they are just like convincing a monkey that they have to eat meat and that mopnkeys don’t have the natural urge to eat bananas, it makes the monkey crazy and lose himself, especially when all the other monkeys are against him!!! I always feel a loooots of peace when I come to your page or read your books, or read anything “real” and humane and not labeling the human psyche as a “scientific matter” and pretend that we understand it by understanding its chemistry!!
    well I would like to hear your opinion, and thank you very much!!!

  90. Hi Daniel,

    Its really refreshing to see someone with such insight speaking out on these issues, it is an incredibly difficult thing to go deep inside and find truth and begin to flow against the current of family systems and society and an incredibly lonely and arduous process and I commend your bravery. I have personally broken free from my family system and been working inwardly for some years but have found on a larger scale the ‘cult’ of society and mass belief is something I equally need to break from though this is proving to be a little more difficult, I want to break from all these mass concepts that feel so terribly life limiting from money, ownership, religion, all the ideas of relationships, breeding and sex, a multitude of idealizations, mass dissociations and denial, and ultimately I would hope to practice a reversal of the minds desperate need to translate all sensory experience into verbal language, I feel that this desperate translation process stems back most probably to our deepest original trauma of being born to ‘foreigners’, people that do not understand our sensory and emotional native language through deep disconnection of their own child selves and who make no attempt to learn and so begins the process of translation, we forget our own natural language in favor of communication with those whom we are reliant for survival and this I think leaves us very out of touch with ourselves on some deeply profound levels and this perpetual translation driven by such deep sense of desperation is a state in which we live out entire lives. I find it amazing that even within my own mind I communicate in a made up language imposed on me at my earliest life stage rather than my native sensory, emotional language. In practicing letting go of thoughts formulated in this secondary language I feel I can touch the surface of some much more meaningful life experience. I’m studying bush-craft and foraging skills and hoping to locate someone with claim to some land who feels a sense of validity to this type of work. I would love to get enough distance between myself and society to really see the truth of it just as I had to with the family system. Have you on your travels met others distancing themselves from society for these purposes? I feel like there must be groups of people out there working inwardly, have you come across any communities of people dedicated to this kind of work? I would be very interested to hear any thoughts you had on these mass concepts, do you personally struggle with them or have you found a way to make some peace living in these systems and concepts? Do you feel a need to break from society as much as from family systems or do you view them differently? sorry quite a few questions.
    Thanks again for your bravery Daniel, not only doing the incredible work you are in your personal life but for putting yourself out there and speaking the truth to a larger audience.

    • thank YOU gaz 🙂 hmm, breaking from society — well, to be honest society and its damages make me feel sick and sad so often… but…i live in it, and keep exploring it. a tough journey….sometimes i think my job is just to witness how it all unfolds….painfully… daniel

  91. Hello Daniel,
    Thanks for your work that gives us some hope.
    I also have a son diagnosed wiyth psychosis and would need your support to contact in Bs As, Argentina, someone who knows or is appliyng this type of therapy.
    I really appreciate your answer in this sense.
    Best regards and thanks.

    • Hello Mariana, I am from Brazil, can you please tell me if in Argentina you know of a program like the one in Sweden? If not, let’s form one?

  92. Hello Daniel

    I am glad to have found your site. I must say that your perspectives are helping me a lot and I find them very useful, but of course I have too much work to do in order to recover from my childhood trauma and growing spiritually. Unfortunately, I am at this very moment stuck in a difficult situation, regarding the oppression of the family and society system, and I hope to come out of it someday. Of course I may be wrong, but sometimes I think that my country (specifically, Spain) is very conservative and family-oriented, and thus makes it harder for someone to identify children abuse and to make difficult decisions such as burning bridges. Never been to the US or Canada, so obviously I cannot speak empirically, but I assume that confronting “toxic” families (and even calling them by this name; could it even be a quasi-pleonasm?) is never an easy decision in any society of the world, whether it is, generally-speaking, more individualistic or collectivist.

    Best regards and keep on the good work (by the way, excuse my English grammar mistakes).

  93. After reading: Therapy Without Force: A Treatment Model for Severe Psychiatric Problems it is clear that you have no idea how inpatient psych really works and the risk involved. I see that article as a tremendous disservice to the people we treat.

    I am glad to see that you are working on trauma issues, and I look forward to familiarizing myself with that work.

    Just saying.
    Brooke Cooper LICSW

    • hmm, cant say i agree, especially considering the people who published it originally——have quite a little bit of experience inside of mental hospitals themselves…and know what theyre talking about. but thats an aside. i hope we can just agree to disagree. hope you find some value in the rest of my work—daniel

  94. Hola Daniel,

    Soy Alejandra, vivo en Buenos Aires, Argentina. Me gustaría saber si venís a nuestro país para dar tus charlas. Yo también deje las pastillas psiquiátricas porque me hacían sentir mucho peor, lo hice sola fue muy duro, ademas de sufrir abuso por parte de mi ex psiquiatra. Espero tu respuesta. Saludos.

  95. Dear Dan,

    I am a Social Worker from an Early Intervention in Psychosis Service based in Wandsworth, London (UK).

    I have seen your documentary regarding Open Dialogue and I was very impressed. It really helps to shed light on this wonderful new approach!

    As you may be aware we in the UK are trying to promote the Open Dialogue approach as much as possible. And many of my colleauges would love to see this approach implimented in our services. As part of trying to raise the profile of Open Dialogue and promote the approach amongst people in our area, we would like to have an Open Dialogue evening, part of this will include people speaking about Open Dialogue who are already attempting to impliment it here. We would also like to show the doucmentary that you made, but we wanted to get your permision before doing so. Would that be okay with you? And also do you think it would be best to use the film as it is on Youtube? Or for a larger screening would it be better to use a version with higher digital quality.

    Thanks for any help your able to give.

    Kind Regards,

    Joe Jackson

  96. Hi Daniel,

    Some time ago I bought and read your book on separating from your parents, and found it really interesting.

    I’ve become critical of psychotherapy over the years, and befuddled by the fact that so many people cling to the notion that therapy is effective, rarely, if ever admit that it can be damaging, and state that if it doesn’t work for someone, it must be because the client doesn’t have the right attitude. I’ve also been befuddled by how people can be stuck in therapy for decades and yet proclaim loudly how independent they are and how well therapy is serving them, when to me they seem to have been broken down to the status of children.

    I returned to your book a little while ago, and that’s when the light bulb went on for me. Reverence for the psychotherapeutic profession is like a widespread case of transference occurring at the societal level. People identify with the ‘parent’ (therapist) and blame the ‘child’ (client) for failed therapy. People believe in the power of therapy much like they want to believe in their parents. This is how therapy persists in spite of a glaring evidence gap for it being of much use in so many cases.

    It seems to me that almost any relationship which replicates a parental one, or, as in the case of therapy, fetishises and elevates it, will be met with support because it taps into that deep seated need in every human creature to find a safe mother or father figure.

    Thanks for the writing and videos you’ve done. They’re awesome. I hope you do more.

  97. Hello likeminded person. My mind is a little blown finding your works and your philosophies as I am a practicing clinical supervisor and licensed professional counselor who has recently ‘come out’ as a survivor of complex, compound trauma. I’ll be speaking at a conference this Fall on resilience-as myself.
    Currently I’m writing anonymously due to agency policies-I’m still happy to be doing the work, despite all the faults in our service delivery, but there is so much opportunity for growth and change. I’ve been advocating for trauma-informed care within my organization while simultaneously writing my own big, bold truths-and then I found your work.
    I loved reading all the comments of people who thank you for being a fresh and honest voice-it validates the need for transparency from mental health care providers. We are a nation in need of an emotional education. Maybe I’ll see you in the teacher’s lounge 🙂

  98. Dear Daniel,

    when I told my husband about your website today, his thrilling comment was: “And he is alive, man!” We’re so glad to know that we’re not the only ones sharing and living the exact same beliefs you unfold on your website. Your work is impressive. But most of all: It is important.

    Last week, I went window-shopping. I headed for my favorite book store downtown and made an unbelievable discovery. Alice Miller’s works had appeared in the psychology section right at eye level! Highlighted even! It totally made my day. I wish I had come to know her sooner. It was not until September last year that I could find my deepest feelings printed in black and white. And it was not until today that I found you.

    To me the whole desaster is not about blame at all. I do understand my parents and just because I do, I can’t be with them anymore. Actually, I never wanted to. I don’t love them. But I don’t hate them, either. I don’t even believe it’s their responsibility to make a change themselves because they can’t. They can’t process this and even if they could, they wouldn’t want to. And they wouldn’t want to because they couldn’t understand why they should. They are irreversibly shattered ever since they had been children. The happy childhood they were able to imagine for me included a “happy” that could never be enough for me in order to become a healthy adult.

    They did the best they could which wasn’t best for me, but they will never understand. It’s just so sad and pisses me off at the same time. I’m sorry for them in a way, but most of all I’m sorry for myself. I was the one to suffer from a severe psychosis, I was the one to go through a personalized hell of painful feelings, I was the one to face and bear the thruth. I was the one to walk away. Even though they were the ones who abandoned me as a child in the first place. This is the sickest part of all.

    Nevertheless, I am grateful. I can see. And I really want to make this world a better place. Just like you do.

    KeppKeep up the great work!
    Love from Germany

    • thank you!!! and greetings from patagonia in argentina!! i am down here hitchhiking in the winter. cold but lovely… daniel

    • Wow I really connected with what you wrote here, sounds like our stories are very similar. Just wanted to say thanks for sharing this and I know how it feels so hang in there!

  99. Dear Daniel,

    Your candid words balm the soul and your explanations of how you have learned to heal lift the spirit.

    You have cited in your videos the importance of the singularly unique and eye- and heart-opening work of Alice Miller (with caveats) and perhaps Carl Rogers and D.W. Winnicott. (I know it’s not about the individual theorists but their contributions to wellness that is of the greatest import, as few clear-sighted folk would discount all the contributions of Freud though he was, in addition to other things, a startling misogynist and regrettable classist). However finding those shining humanist lights (like the pioneer Alice Miller and the more recent work of Gabor Mate) who have or are in the main embodying wellness does prove inspirational and accessible for those yearning for healing.

    Could you provide other wellness writers who have both influenced you in the past (on your journey to healing from abuse/neglect/abandonment) or the present and who you see as perhaps moving into positive directions (i.e. nature therapy/narrative therapy)?

    Deepest thanks for your contributions to wellness, wishes of sustained growth on your journey of self-exploration and in your recovery of the true self and kindest regards to you.

    • hi mark
      greetings and thank you. hmm, i think fred timm has probably influenced me the most next to alice miller. he has a lot of good writings and is also a friend, so that helps!!! his website is aside from that i have been helped along the way by a lot of novels. i have read a ton in my life…probably none are so direct as alice miller, but in there own little ways many and many have inspired me…to travel, seek, explore, get to know the world, strive…. sending you warm greetings from south america, where i presently am—daniel

      • Hi Daniel,
        Wondering if you can help with any contacts for psychiatrist or good programs in Australia? My husband is having delusions, refusing medication or anything at the moment but he is definately not into medication but it seems urgent I get him help.
        Any suggestions would be welcome.
        Thanks so much. Sam

    • Gabor Mate is wonderful, his book In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts is an incredibly compassionate exploration of the way childhood trauma leads to addiction. There’s a lot of great podcasts with him out there as well. I also recently read Judith Herman’s Trauma and Recovery, it’s a classic and I suspect much of it would be in line with the kind of ideas on this website. Also, a while ago I really got into Stefan Molyneux, his libertarian stuff turns me off but he’s got some fascinating podcasts on the effects of childhood trauma and the ways people become trapped by corrupt family dynamics.

  100. Hi Daniel,

    I make it short, don’t know if you want to answer this: My therapist tends to get sleepy during the session. All in all, she’s not bad, and things were developing in a right direction, I feel, but her regular sleepiness makes me question if I should look for another therapist?! She says it’s because of my suppressed anger (she writes that in her book too!), but I’m not sure about it. She gets sleepy almost every session….

    Best wishes

    • hmm….i would trust your instincts on this on, and not trust hers!! sorry to be so direct, but i dont like it that she gets sleepy and then blames you for it. i mean, everyone has repressed anger, and it’s normal to be annoyed at a therapist who gets sleepy a lot during sessions… i would be bothered by that. but maybe you can talk about all this more directly with you. if she’s getting sleepy in session with you i would guess there’s a fair amount she’s not saying. i mean, i dont really know what is going on, but its just a hunch… all the best, daniel

  101. Hi Daniel!

    I hope you’re keeping well.

    I have a question for you if that’s okay:

    What are your thoughts on the subject “blame” when it comes to healing from trauma?

    I seem to recall you discussing it either in your videos, articles, or books – but I can’t remember which.

    Would love to hear your thoughts.



  102. I was really impressed with your youtube video you describe the issues very well. I also sent a copy to my ex he probably won’t listen to it but hey, worth trying…anyhow well said about the childhood issues most people don’t want to face due to the fact basically they are brainwashed by the desire of the parent not allowing them to have a voice. It is very deep. Like with my ex, he thinks his mother’s opinion is his opinion, but it might not be. It is a good way to do things to look at it as the original child. We create the false self in order to survive. I agree that dreams are very important. I def. never say ‘this was just a dream-meaningless, it always has meanings and messages in it. Great what you do!

  103. I am wondering if anyone or if YOU replied to the last comment I posted. If yes, HOW do I retrieve those responses, because I haven’t gotten any.

    I need to know if there is a Healing Home place/places -preferably in southern CA, that take into account both childhood trauma and ethnicity of individual, diagnosed with Schiz., who has been only on Risperdal Consta for last 11 years. Reason, adamantly refusing to take any other meds, says “they are ALL bad and don’t like what they do to my memory.” Person also has been experiencing severe unusual sensory experiences -bed being shaken at night, walls being banged, eyes being pressed into mattress when trying to fall asleep; negative & mean people saying things -“They” KNOW where ever I go and whatever I do, “They” use it against me. States difficulties in the following: “Can’t breath at night -but no obvious signs of breathing difficulty; Clothing, sheets, towels, etc, “replaced; being poisoned by staff; filtered water has laxative in it & gave me severe stomach cramps and caused swollen stomach”;
    People are saying “you will die tonight”; Insomnia; “Can’t move hands and arms at times, especially at night” -fears death while sleeping; Shadow of right hand is a major problem in the sun; etc “Staff at facility are all in collusion -can’t talk to them. Reason: “Unable to defend myself due to chemical castration, at last faciitly” etc.
    For the most part “not comfortable ANYWHERE in the place of residence -stays in room -which is devoid of anything, anywhere,..Refuses to accept anything, like radio for comfort. (However DID accept a plant, which “will help with my breathing”)
    FEARS SEEING DOCTOR,..”can’t stand the word. They just want to give me more medication.. and make me even worse!!”.

    Where might such a place be? . Note: Individua age, only 31, highly intelligent, wants desperately to have have a bright and happy future, but all he can think about now is being “raptured”, and going to heaven where he can “get away from the torment here on earth”. I want him on earth…not in heaven. He is my son. I love him dearly and want him to be happy -on earth NOW. Twelve years of torment is enough for anyone.
    Thanks for your consideration in replying and for letting me KNOW your response or anyone that has a positive reply,

  104. Hi Daniel,

    I found your film Coming Off Psych Drugs (doing a search related to my own “coming off”) and it is amazing. I have watched it several times; it is comforting and motivating and inspiring. I am fortunate to have good support, but if I didn’t (and even though I do) the film almost makes me feel part of this retreat, this community.

    I once put together a one-minute video and it took an hour!! So I can only imagine how much work went into making this amazing film. I will either buy the DVD or more likely make a donation to your site and keep watching the film on YouTube. Thank you so much.

  105. Hi Daniel,

    I stumbled across your work through the wormhole of the Interwebs – the closest link being Will Hall. I have begun the process of tapering down the meds and have begun a journal. I’m nervous but I have a good support network and shit loads of hope 😉

    Thanks for all the work you do. It resonates with me greatly.
    More essays and videos please :)))

  106. Daniel,
    Thank you for making your experience and understanding available. I appreciate the time and effort you have lent as a contribution to our collective.

    I am especially grateful to have found another voice echoing the concerns I have carried yet didn’t have my own words for. As I began my journey to becoming a therapist a strong urging grew withing me that I might be more effective in helping others heal if I abandoned formal training and embraced a more sincere and less hard science approach.

    After going through the majority of your material, I have a few questions for you. I’ve been encouraged by your journeys and am myself inspired to manifest the same in my own life. I’m curious, have you considered offering your talent for communication with clients to those who wish to participate in therapeutic relationships from a different approach than is available in the traditional setting?

    We have established that there is a problem with our current form of popular clinical therapy, yet I know deeply, within my core, that the need for therapy-related services are relent now more than ever. Have you entertained any solutions that you can participate in as an educator? How do you feel about stepping beyond presenting the issues to participating in lending towards solution?
    I’m moving forward and would love to learn from you in the aspects that you appreciated and found value within your years as a therapist.

    Thank you,
    Alisa Burnham

    • hi alisa,
      greetings and thank you for your comment. i definitely like the idea of contributing ideas of value…. hmm, although i did work “in” the system in some ways, in many ways i did not — especially when i was in private practice. that’s where i found my work to be of the most value in being useful to others. i also have made some films about alternate forms of the therapy that were/are/have been useful to others……mostly others going through that thing called psychosis. not sure if you’ve seen them, but they’re less a critique of the present system and more an offering of healthy viable alternatives, some that are pretty different. (open dialogue and healing homes are two of those films) as for returning to being a therapist…..i don’t think it’s for me…..though in some ways i still retain some aspects in my life of being a healer….it’s just part of who i am. however, i’m all for self-healing, self-therapy……i think it’s so under-explored and under-utilized……just takes a lot of work. i’m curious what kind of work you do. wishing you the best——–daniel

      • Daniel,

        Thank you for your generous response. I regret that I didn’t see this sooner, my lack of Internet skills has caught up with me.

        Yes, I am very familiar with the majority of your work. I have watched your films, read your written word, watched your various YouTube videos and listened to your music. After “hanging out” with you and making myself familiar with the work you’ve shared I felt compelled to contact you. Your approach towards the sensitivity of others has resonated with me. I feel as though you have a gift of speaking to others in a way that allows them to feel safe enough to share.

        My work as a freelance research/writer along with my unique individual life experience has carried me on a colorful path. My current research work involves metaphysics and spirituality (understanding the dynamic between the divine feminine and masculine) as an intuitive.
        I stay grounded and relevant by constantly making myself familiar with the works of other great minds in the field of psychology and therapy as well as spirituality.

        Through my work I have become convinced that I don’t know anything. Actually I do know one thing, that we all desperately need each other. Meanwhile, our capability to communicate and be available to others is fading at a time when we need it most.

        I sense that people like me, those of us who currently work with clients (performing therapy as an art form) could benefit from a gift I believe you have. I appreciate your consideration of others and your delivery of information. I respect the role clinical, scientific therapy plays in our society today, but I know it can also be performed as an art form, as an alternative. There is a lack of educators willing to travel down this creative and possibly controversial path. But I believe we are desperate for a more satisfying drink. Specifically, I’m curious if you’d be interested in teaching effective communication to other practitioners as an art form?

        Thank you for making yourself available to others.

        Alisa Burnham Foy

        • hi alisa — hmm……teaching others. i guess i’d be into it, but it would be a question of context. i wonder what context i might work in…. i have trouble imagining a school hiring me (i’ve never had any luck with a grad school offering me work), and freelance….hmm…….i’m not sure. but maybe someday. it would interest me, yes…. greetings, and thanks for this nice message——-daniel

  107. Hi Daniel! I thank you for your wonderful website which provides me a sence of hope and clearence of my life journey. I have 2 questions:1-Are meditation, music(peaceful one) and spending time with nature helpful for healing our psyche?(I mean when we focus them on our selves and emotions, not onto delusional spiritual feelings)?….2-Do you know anything I can refer to, to heal my body from the results of extreme psychiatric medication for 4 continuous years? I wish you the best and hope that we all of us meet someday when we become better creatures

      • thank you very much!! and there is something VERY VERY IMPORTANT that you made me realise after I thought deepely of all what you wrote, wich is the difference between the peace of healing, and the fake peace of dissociation and the fantasies that I create when I imagine a fake and peaceful world which is full of love and delusional stuff and I dissociate my traumas in them, and live in it that world(especially after listening to emotional music which I decided to stop listening to it, because it is really delusional), and the same idea applies to meditation. I think meditation should be used to think deepely about our traumas and imagine we’re holding them in our hands and becoming the master of them who chooses to control them and consciously make them become “true”. You don’t know how much you’re helping me, I wish to show it to you someday. Thank you!!

  108. Hey Daniel,
    I am planning on getting off my medicine (abilify, fluoxetin and valporat-‘accid’), and I was researching a lot coming across your youtube video ‘healing psychosis.
    I would really be grateful if you could give me some tipps or anything of information or further books i can read in preperal of my further process.

    thanks so much for putting up information, furthermore, it’s nice seeing that there are people being so truthful to themselves making you be able to get to such conclusions 🙂

    Lieben Gruß!

  109. Hi Daniel. I read a post on here for finding support for med withdrawal in Melbourne, Australia. I am in a similar boat and would be very grateful if you know anyone who can help in this part of the world.
    Kind regards, John

  110. Hey Daniel,

    Hope you’re keeping well.

    I’ve just published a video titled “how keeping a journal can change your life” on my YouTube channel. Perhaps you or anyone who reads this might like to check it out.

    My reason for posting it here (apart from raising awareness of my video/channel!) is that you have been one of the main people who influenced me to keep a journal for personal growth. Through your videos and books (and the handful of messages we’ve exchanged) I see you as a mentor. My study and observations of you also helped inform several of the points I make in the video.

    Here’s a link if you or anyone else would like to watch it:



  111. Thank you for your comprehensive reply. I feel responsible for vetting false/weak ideas that produce false hope and your points are well heard.

    I think my next step is to tell him about the video and let him read this set of messages. If he is not ready to consider the implications made in the video or he wants to do his own research that would be understandable and your reply provides much information which will benefit his personal, targeted research.

    Thank you again.

    Warm regards,


  112. Hi Daniel , here Jeremy, a careful reader and viewer of your publications , I am 24 years old and I was diagnosed schizophrenic for two years , I am followed by a good psychiatrist who has prescribed me of Abilify , but for me it is a solution in the medium term . I am interested in the progress of psychiatric medicine , you talk about structure in Lapland , which has trained staff to this new therapy , the Open Dialogue . Is there similar structures closer to France, and if not, is it possible to make a stay in this hospital , In order to stop this medicine too heavy which is the abilify ?
    Thank you and keep up the blog, many people listen to you

    Best regards


    • hello jeremy — hmm, unfortunately i don’t know any really good stuff going on in france. i wish i did!! and as for visiting finland to stay in their hospital, unfortunately their services are only for finnish citizens who happen to live in their local area….. wishing you strength on your journey — and thank you for your comment. daniel

      • Hi Daniel,
        Thank you for your answer on Jeremys very good question. It helped me. It is also a fine documentary I hope to watch completely tonight, with my parents. I can see therapy of Open dialoge is one solution in my case as a brother
        (im 27), to a younger sister with the condition, much alike Jeremys. We live in Sweden though. The system of healthcare is depends much on three entities, the Landsting, Municipality, and State. However, the system has its flaws, partly because of bureacracy with the Landsting and cost-mindset without funds from the state. Having said that, my sister suffers from schizofrenia and psycosis according to the doctors here. Therefore, have been thoughts that my sister should attend the open dialogue, maybe during the summer in Finland, somehow. I understand from this, that we cannot, but I will look into this therapy more now.

        Forgive me my english is poor sometimes… Kind and many regards,

        • dear sven, greetings. i am not sure where you are in sweden, but i made a documentary in gothenburg — and actually have it (and two of my other films) subtitled in swedish if you want. but the program i filmed in sweden is in many ways better than open dialogue in finland. here’s the film about it: if you like the film and want me to put you in contact with them i could do that. they do fantastic work and are simply good people too. (they also know people all around sweden, not just gothenburg.) i’ve spent quite a bit of time in sweden, actually. (and when i’m there i start speaking swedish, though not very well 🙂 ). anyway — greetings. daniel

  113. Hi Daniel! I emailed you a while ago about therapy issues. I’ve decided to hang in with my therapist. I just found out my liver is end stage and I need that support.
    I’ll continue reading and watching your videos as they have opened my eyes to where I know what I need and want from therapy.
    I thought being cured from Hep C four years ago was a done deal. Truth is it destroyed my liver over 25 years.
    It has given me an urgency to find peace like never before. Isn’t it strange that it would take a terminal disease to realize how precious time is.
    I’m very grateful to have found your website.
    It brings me comfort. Please keep inspiring other folks as you have done me.
    In gratitude…
    Diane Conklin

    • Diane,
      wow — that’s intense. life sure throws some real curve balls…… thank you for your message, and i’m wishing you STRENGTH AND VISION on your journey forward. i sense your journey is an inspired one. gratitude back to you, daniel

  114. Thanks on your quick answer! Y es I believe my family enables him, me too maybe, only I don’t live with him and my parents, I’m being the bad guy lately, my mom gets stressed and sad, my dad doesn’t want to see… It is complicated, sometimes I want to punch him in the face, sometimes I get really scare when thinking about his future, sometimes I’m just as sad as my mom, but lately I’m mad, and I don’t have enough energy…then I feel really guilty… He’s a very sweet guy, and loves my children , I try to be here for him as much as I can, but maybe it’s not my role… I would like to understand him, to see things From his point of view… I’m too structured maybe…
    Thanks so much for reading and for helping so much…. I think yoga could help… I may turn him to it…

  115. Hi Daniel;
    It’s been a while since I wrote to you, but follow the posts here, and still feel like we are at square one, muy brother had a good yeat, but as the end came, he started again feeling …not good, the problemas is he doesn’t want help, he’s convinced he is not ill, and the truth is he gets everyone really tired, mad sad … My mom is always down… That makes me really sad/angry, and also tired, what to do? i know you can’t give me a magical solution, I want him to be happy, I want him to finish studying, or to decide he wants to work, but DO something!
    Any advice? Maybe there are some strategies to help him… Here there is no open dialogue…. Only drugs… And traditional psychiatry….and he’s not going to take Any…
    What do you think about yoga? Or mindfulness?? I’m starting to loose it….

    • hi Mar,
      well, if he doesn’t want help then that kiboshes most of the best ideas anyone might have…. all the ideas in the world might be great, and are to many people (mindfulness, yoga, open dialogue, therapy, whatever), but if a person isn’t interested in them then no one can force them to do them…. these situations are always so complex. a few things i might challenge you with (in the spirit of hopefully being useful): that he’s ill….and that he doesn’t recognize that he has an illness. i wonder what he thinks he’s going through, or how he conceptualizes it. maybe he conceptualizes his experience in a way that is more useful to him (and perhaps more realistic) than illness. illness….can be such a demoralizing way to look at a situation….maybe a different way of looking at it (whatever it is) might be more helpful? also: sometimes parents/families enable people. i’m not saying you’re enabling him, but maybe he’s not in a position where he has to make any changes — or maybe making changes is scarier than just doing whatever he’s already doing (or not doing). but i do often see families who enable their family members who get labeled with the problem. also, maybe others in the family can seek help for themselves if he’s not interested in it. sometimes one person in the system changing can change the whole system in unexpected ways. perhaps you’ve already considered all this….but i figured i’d just chime in a little….. daniel

  116. Hi. We’re from Mexico and we’re doing a project for cultural and arts sector and is a project of antipsychiatry theme. In April we will start with a permanent exhibition of antipsychiatry. The exhibition is called: “Analectics release.” We begin with a performance of art utilitarian object (Souvenirs) And in turn, give talks and lectures in the history of antipsychiatry, development, growth, today’s antipsychiatry and how is, of those thoughts that gave the initiation and training in their movement, thoughts: postmodernist and poststructuralist twentieth century.

    We’re dedicated to the visual arts, but we’re in the antipsychiatry 20 years ago (Biomnémica) Know the dark side of psychoactive drugs, the marketing of psychopathology, etc.

  117. el me puedes indicar un contacto, correo electrónico para comunicarme con un Psiquiatra de filandia programa diálogo abierto. Es para un familiar que vive en Noruega. gracias.

    • hola gloria,
      voy a escribirte un email privado — pero no pienso que las personas en finland peuden leer español…

  118. ….oh yes, unfortunately he can not take a plane = fly (gets panic attacks, is just too unwell) otherwise i would send him to Finland for the Open Dialog program…

  119. Hi Daniel
    sooo refreshing listening to your youtube talks and short films you made !! they confirm what i have been thinking all along. i am so glad i found you.
    I have been put under so much pressure to act against my intuition and put my son (24) into hospital, who is suffering from ‘schizophrenia’ as a result from childhood traumas. he has been very very unwell for quite a few years and has been hospitalised a few times without any positive results, more the opposite – it traumatised him even more and he refuses ‘professional’ help/ medication since these admissions (i would too) do they think ‘popping the magic pill’ is a solution ???
    do you know anything or anyone in australia/sydney who does ‘alternative’ treatments for psychosis??? i am very desperate to help my son. i have been looking after him for years but need help from someone. thank you so much.

    • hi barbara — off the top of my head….i can’t think of anyone specific in sydney, but you might start with ISPS in australia — also the hearing voices network australia: the people in those groups, if you can connect with them, would know local folks (both professional and so-called peer) who might be helpful. also, i think staying local is usually best. going halfway around the world usually isn’t a great idea anyway, in my experience…. wishing you the best!! daniel p.s. i went to melbourne uni for a semester in 1993, studied zoology and traveled all around australia then…

    • Barbara,

      Check out Paris Williams at Mad in America. He’s From Australia, but more importantly think about the fact that Skype is an excellent tool to communicate with psychologist nowadays. you can have a lot of sessions through that medium.

  120. Hey Daniel,

    Happy New Year my friend. I hope you’re keeping well (same goes for everyone who reads this comment!) I’m just writing to let you know that I recently published a video on my YouTube channel titled “What is Personal Growth?” In it, I give a pretty comprehensive breakdown of what the term “personal growth” means to me. Perhaps you or some of your readers might like to check it out. Here’s a link:

    Best wishes,


  121. Hi Daniel,

    I am very interested in your writings since I discovered it 2 days ago. 🙂 I also bought your book and red it all to have an idea of it, and find more ideas to go on with my own process. (I’m not really a step by step following person). And I would like to talk to you about it.

    I would prefer to contact you in private, but I couldn’t find any contact link, so I share it here.

    All your theories are making sense with what I have experienced myself. The text of what is a good shrink, the video “broken wings” and many articles of you, it touched me, cause it goes were I’m going, and it’s very hard to find people that are real adventurers of the Self on that earth.

    I am in a process of finding myself in a conscious way for 5 years now.

    Before, in a way, I was searching for it too…But I didn’t know I was searching for my inner truth, I was just hoping to cure of my depressions and intrusives flashbacks and thoughts, I couldn’t understand what was happening to me, despite many therapies and psychologics and spiritual readings.

    I have tried everything, even going to a jungle to take ayahuasca, a powerful drug that breaks all your defenses and makes you access to your trauma in the hard way. But then, again, I didn’t know what was happening to me. I just wanted to get rid off my horrible state.

    Then, I discovered Alice Miller and she changed my life forever. I can say she saved me. In fact, only a sentence that I found on a website was like an electroshok.

    She said: “This is not a homecoming, since this home has never before existed. It is the creation of home.”

    I could describe it like a powerful wave of some healing water on my brain, and I my heart was beating so hard, I was thinking “That’s it, that’s it!”

    Then I started to cry and grieve for 10 days without stopping. Staying in my bed and grieving. I lived experiences of my childhood that didn’t even remember, like it was happening right now.

    Then, I went on reading more and more, and discovered that what I was doing was primal, as Arthur Janov describe it very well.

    I have made the decision to go farer and farer in that direction. Going for my truth. I was allready not talking to my family on my father’s side (included my father), and then I decided to break with my mother, and little by little, with the whole family, in order to follow what was the best for me.

    Taking distance with all of them was the best decision ever. I was scared at first that I would regret it. But it was the opposite. I discovered that their toxicity was poisoning my blood for years, and the result was like for a desintoxication: I was feeling better and better, more joyful, allowed to act like they would never agree, and also allowed to feel everything, free to feel, free to be.

    For me the cure process doesn’t follow at all the steps you are advising in your book, despite I understand it.

    It helps me with the questions, so I an go deeper.

    But there are things that I want to say, cause I don’t think it’s possible to really cure with the behaviors advises.

    For example:

    “It is easy to revert to old attitudes and
    behavior. Often we do this in subtle and
    insidious ways. For this reason we continue
    to monitor the events of our day…”

    I don’t agree with that. As my experience teached me, the old attitudes are naturally desappearing as you don’t need to use it. The attitudes that you talk about, are defenses of your body against the old trauma imprinted in our body cells. Once we grieved the trauma, it’s gone. THe body doesn’t need to act like this anymore. We don’t have to be careful of not having the behaviors, we just don’t feel like doing it.

    For example, before, I was smoking a lot. I could empty a packet of cigarettes in a party night. Not mentioning the fact that I was drinking a lot. To relieve the pressure of the traumas inside me.

    But now that I have grieved this traumas, I just don’t like to drink or smoke. I don’t have to make any effort not to do it.

    So I am not at all in thoses theories of “going out comfort zones”, cause comfort is the zone I was when I was drinking and smoking, comfort is still the zone I am now without doing it.

    I think that self-therapy can be a good help, or a good start, but the thing is that the repressed feelings and traumas doesn’t go out by deciding it. It has to be lived completely, deeply, in order to free the body of it. And the problem of defenses, is that they foil the process, by making you believe that you are grieving, while you are going in a more comforting place in your brain, to cry instead of be scared, and relieve a pressure like a masturbation of the brain, instead of really going deep.

    And even today, whereas my process is advanced, and that I am very able to know when I don’t go in the right direction, I need from time to time, someone to push me in it, cause my body just don’t want to go there, never ever.

    Also, you are talking about “finding someone that is enlightened enough” to understand you and your process. For me, that’s called a shrink…Cause no friend can be enlightened enough so he or she wants to follow you in your own process. Everyone has to deal with it’s own traumas, and even people that want to be helpful cannot play the free shrink for you.

    Also, you are aware that there are people without any friend, absolutely isolated, and doing a self-therapy could harm them more than helping them? There are people who access to some very painful feelings and without help, they are suffering so much that they better want to kill themselves, than having to stand it.

    I think this document is more for stable people, who are not isolated, knowing something about the process, so they won’t jump out the window when they will access to a memory of rape or murder.

    I was thinking for a long time to write a self-therapy book, as I thought I cured myself alone.

    But I have to recognize that even if Alice Miller gave me the key to finally open an allready very used door, I had many therapists and “helping witnesses” that supported me for years.

    Even after, while I was grieving most of time by myself, I regularly ask to differents therapists to help me go when I have a difficult recovery that happens.

    I would really, really enjoy to meet you and to talk with you. Too bad, I was in New York or the first and only time in my life just 2 months ago. 😀 If you travel to France, I would be glad to be in touch with you.

    Have a nice time!

  122. Hi Daniel

    I have had psychosis for the past year and now on medication. I have seen you uploaded videos on people who were recovered from schizophrenia without medication. My question is how are they dealing with relapses by taken off their meds? I’m from Australia and am looking support group that help me recover without medication. I wonder if you have any information i could follow.

    • greetings Manus. hmm — some people have no relapses. others have really intense ones — though often it is drug withdrawal. you’d probably like my film “coming off psych drugs” — you can find it on my website. it’s on youtube for free. also, i would recommend the website — and maybe through there you can get connected with some like-minded folks in australia…. wishing you the best! daniel

    • Hi Manus,
      I commented on Daniel’s thread a very long time ago so I am always “dinged” when someone else makes a comment. I hope you don’t mind that I chime in here.
      There are two communities of think that I’m aware of that offer non-medicating assistance (and are both voice affirming if that’s something you feel would be helpful to you): Hearing Voices and Internal Family Systems.

      Hearing Voices has support group chapters in many different countries.
      Internal Family Systems is a therapeutic model, their website will allow you to search for qualified therapists by region.

      I hope this is helpful…and I hope Daniel can offer some more guidance.


  123. Hi Daniel,
    This week I completed the Intentional Peer Support training, and on the last day, today, we each had to do a 5 minute project. I sang the song “I Went to a Shrink” along with you on your CD. I explained that I think this song explains why IPS is so needed, and I shared that the song is basically my story. It was very well received, and many people in the class now want to get a hold of the CD. I enjoyed doing it. It was nice to perform it for people instead of simply sing along with you when I’m in the car. I just want you to know that I feel very connected to you and I am very grateful for all of your work. What are you up to these days?

  124. Hi Daniel,

    I just want you to know that today I completed the Intentional Peer Support Training with Steve Morgan and Eva Dech. Today, we had to do a 5 minute project, and for my project I sang along to your song “I Went to a Shrink”. It was very well received, and people want to get a hold of your CD now to hear more. I just want you to know I feel such a connection with you, and I am so grateful for all of your work. What are you up to these days?

  125. hey daniel! im avi and diagnosed with schizophrenia. your movies changed my all prespective about mental health sysmtem and opened up new horizons really got me thinking.

    i only had one psychotic episode that ended 10 yrs ago.obviously was hospitalized and on meds through all this time.

    i was in therapy with a clinical psychologist for 4 yrs and it really helped me to understand the root of my illness and how to change the destructive path i was walking in so i could regain my health again.

    my question for you is how am i supposed to get off meds cuz there isnt much knowledge about it here in israel… could you adress me to some place where i can get good advice?

    btw i got to think that there is a similarity between weed and psychiatric drugs.

    what i mean is that for me weed was the trigger for the eruption of my illness and i thought that maybe the meds or drugs were the trigger for my recovery….

    maybe my recovery was supposed to begun anyways without meds.

    and society is just built like that when a mentaly ill person would have to end up in a mental hospital at least the majority of us.

  126. Hi Daniel.

    I´m shure, I´m telling you not new news about childhood. Alice Miller give me a thanks in 2008 to my «concern» about NeuroScience (Danke, dass Sie sich darum kümmern) … you remember .. and you can smile … Miller held Shonkoff as a failure.

    German is far away from USA (NewYork) – ok 7 hours 🙂 but I found a cool video on the Internet with SHAKIRA / SHONKOFF from the UNESCO in NewYork: Meeting the Minds. Really good.

    Other VIDs available. Shonkoff speaks right words. Childhood is a old story but new is NeuroScience in the contect. Shakira speaks NeuroScience at the point … with the advantage – Shakira is singing better than Shonkoff 🙂

    I hope you going well. Best wishes from Germany, the land of Herman Hesse 🙂

  127. Mr Mackler

    Almost all “new” psychology is based on an unobserved century old paradigm. Please look at the site anewpsychology dot com. If you like it I will send you a copy of the book. You can start at chapter 8. You will know within a few minutes if it holds interest.

    Regards John David Klein

  128. Hi Daniel,

    I recently read two of your books – “Breaking from Your Parents” and “Toward Truth”. I really enjoyed them both. The engaging content and fluid writing style made them very easy to read in my opinion. I read both in less than a week and have posted a positive review on Amazon.

    I think what resonates with me the most about your work is the warrior spirit you advocate when it comes to one’s healing and growth. The discipline, dedication and “whatever it takes” attitude you’ve applied to your own growth really comes across in the books and I find this very inspirational. I’ve been dedicated to my own healing and growth for just over a year now and I completely agree with the perspective that it takes a LOT of space, time, focus and life force energy to truly heal and grow.

    Ultimately, I see you as leader in the realm of healing and growth. It takes a lot of courage to stand up and say many of the things you say and do many of the things you have done. And so I just want to send some acknowledgement and appreciation your way for being somewhat of a trail blazer and for helping guide and inspire folks such as myself along our journeys of healing and growth.

    A question that springs to mind as I write this post is in relation to the term “true self”. While it’s clear from your books, videos and website that you see “growth” as the process of becoming one’s true self, I’m curious – how would you define the term “true self”?

    In gratitude and respect,


    • hi conor,
      thanks for your words. appreciated!! i’m going through a complex period right now — lots of growth. i find it gets easier in some ways, and yet not in others. always a new challenge. funnily enough, i was wondering how to define the true self the other, and wondered if i had defined it in the index of “toward truth.” i thought i might have but couldn’t remember. i just looked it up and see that i did. i always defined the false self, so i’ll paste both here:

      The True Self: The best of who we really are, based on an enlightened self-awareness of our core of inner truth and our connection with it.

      The False Self: 1) The mistaken identity by which an unenlightened person defines himself; 2) The part of us so lost in unresolved traumas that it does not know who we really are and what really motivates us—and yet lacks awareness of our internal confusion or mistaken identity; 3) A person’s identity based not on an enlightened connection with himself but on an identification with his unresolved, traumatized sides and with his traumatizers; 4) The persona, not the person.

      all the best,

      • Good to hear you’re going through a period of growth! It would be great if you lived near me. I’d love to meet you for a cuppa tea and talk all about it!

        Isn’t it so special when you can actually feel yourself healing and growing? I’ve been going through a few growth spurts as well recently. So empowering. More and more I’m looking at life as a hero’s journey. I now see all of these challenges and struggles, both internal and external, as an inherent part of the process in discovering and expressing the True Self – and ultimately becoming the heros of our own stories.

        Thanks for those definitions. I love that definition of the True Self you shared. Reminds me of the idea that we each have an essential nature – just like a tree or an animal – and when properly nourished and supported we will grow into the full expression of our essential nature – the deepest truth of who we are in full blossom. And because many of us didn’t receive that nourishment and support as children, it’s now our job as adults to give it to ourselves.

        I also find it very helpful to look at the definition of the False Self you shared. It reminds of me of the idea that living as a False Self is similar to being in a hypnotic trance. All of that unconscious pain drives a person to behave in a way that is totally out of alignment with their essential nature – the truth of who they really are.

        I’m curious to hear your thoughts on something else actually. I recently heard a guy (who has also been big into healing and growth for a long time) say that as children, it’s not so much what happened to us that causes the wounding, but it’s actually more to do with our perception at the time of what happened to us that caused the pain, e.g. “Dad criticizes me, which means there’s something wrong with me”. The guy makes the point that taking responsibility for the fact that it was our perception which created the wounding is ultimately the most empowering approach to healing it because we are then in a better position to change the story we created at the time. Hopefully I’ve explained the point clearly enough.

        Do you have any thoughts on that, and if so, what are they? Is it something you’ve considered before?

        • hi conor,
          i enjoyed reading this. i like the idea of this being a hero’s journey. i agree — and see it as a great but very difficult journey. i also like what you wrote about the false self being a sort of hypnotic state. as for the guy who says that our perceptions of what happened to us are more important than what happened to us, i don’t agree. i think that is an argument that too easily leads into dissociation. first, i’ve seen people that hold to this argument, and it hasn’t panned out in their personal lives. also, i don’t see it as making sense theoretically. there are some things that are simply harmful to us no matter what our perceptions of them, especially things that happened to us when we were kids. we were too powerless then, too vulnerable. alternate perceptions weren’t going to save us, though they did certainly save some people some pain. lots of traumatized people dissociate in order to spare themselves pain. also, there are many things that happened to us when we were very young that we don’t remember — and thus don’t even have a perception of. for instance, circumcision. it was a horrible thing, yet most men who had it don’t remember it at all. does that mean they’re more empowered over this? also, in the example you gave, the statement “Dad criticizes me, which means there’s something wrong with me” is itself a false story — a protection against an even more painful reality — that….”my father, the most important male role model in the world, the man who created me and whose job it was to love me and provide me the model for male love in my life, doesn’t love me and in fact rejects me.” that is an even more painful reality for children, i believe…easier to believe that i’m the problem…. that protects dad and thus keeps me feeling safe… also, what about a child who got raped? why should they take responsibility for this in any way, and how could taking responsibility for this in any way empower them? better just to know the reality of what happened and work to grieve the loss and not replicate it. hope this makes sense, all the best,

          • It certainly does make sense Daniel. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I suspected you might have some strong opinions on it! And I’m inclined to agree with you. I especially like your point about the child believing that they are the problem as opposed to the father, in order to protect the father and keep themselves safe. I hadn’t thought of that before.

            An example from my own journalling work this morning even supports your point. It occurred to me that as a young child (younger than 5), there would have been many incidences that my parents would have been furiously angry with me. I now realize that I would not only have been absolutely terrified by this but would also have believed that I was defective in some way – to make mom or dad so livid like that. And I think it’s fair to say that reaction of absolute terror in a child (to furious anger from an adult) would be more of an automatic and instinctual response, rather than a result of a perception. And, similar to what you said, I can now see that the resulting belief of “I am defective, I need to change” is likely a protective / survival mechanism.

            Having said all that, the guy who made the point (about our perception playing a key part in our wounding) is pretty knowledgable and open-minded and I’m sure there is much more flexibility in his way of seeing all of this than I could do justice for. I reckon he might even agree with the points we made as well. I may end up speaking with him in person actually and now, thanks to your message and my own reflections, I’ll be able to have a more informed opinion and conversation about the matter.

            Thanks again Daniel. It’s really good to connect with you 🙂 It seems our heros journeys, deeply challenging as they can be, have led us both to a similar passion – healing from the pas, growing into the best of who we really are and sharing our lessons with others along the way. It’s likely I’ll post another message in the near future if that’s ok!!!

            Talk soon,


        • Interesting reading and yet sinc e I applied to Criminal Injuries compensation adn this means that I have exposed the horrendous truth that my life was utterly derailed by a ‘dark night” of sexual assault,I have been flung too far into the misery and housebound with a broken arm at the same time!!!I fell that I need human comfort and presence so much right now and no one come s to visit.I cannot do this on my own.The years of trying to live with “no support” has caught up with me.I live in Canada.

  129. Hi Daniel,

    I am writing to you from India, and how lucky I am to chance upon your YouTube video. It was simply BRILLIANT. The smug fraternity of psychotherapists deserves to be called out on their ineptness, it was high time. You are very articulate and I applaud you for calling a spade a spade, without mincing your words. You seem to have a very deep grasp of human nature, and I appreciate your incisive understanding of the attributes that must necessarily be present in anyone who wants to call himself or herself a “healer” (and charge money for it). It was uncanny watching your video, as it seemed you were vocalizing verbatim, every thought I have had about therapists for the past few years.

    I have been at the receiving end of countless such incompetent therapist, which has been very damaging to my self esteem and trust, not to forget, financially draining. In my personal experience I do not know of a single therapist that is good. Apart from not being good, frustratingly, they even lack common sense. I have met more ‘regular’ people without psychology degrees, such as, friends, strangers, bloggers, other clients, who are more empathetic, have a better understanding of problems and offer some practicable solutions- minus the arrogance and heavy fees one has to endure for trying out these self proclaimed ‘experienced’ therapists.

    I must add, that in countries like India, the quest for finding a therapist who is reasonable enough (not good, but even slightly reasonable) is way more difficult, as our culture teaches us to unconditionally respect and bow down to authority (doctors, therapists etc). So much so that even asking them any question is considered effrontery. This undue privilege given to them by Indian society makes them even more arrogant, and they feel no need to be open to learning, let alone admitting their mistakes (‘because they are the ones with all the answers, how could they deign to learn from us’). The bar for therapists in India is very low, and it boils down to a simple case of demand and supply; since beggars can’t be choosers, we are forced to endure the least shitty therapist, with all her flagrant flaws in thinking, just because others are even worse. The emotional and financial cost of searching for a new therapist every time are just too high.

    Mental health services in general are dismal all over the world. Since you are in a country where the system is slightly better than in India, I urge you to show your video to authorities in hospitals who are in charge of hiring psychotherapists. There should be ways of testing people for empathy and common sense, apart from looking at their degrees. Secondly, since the fees are so high, and majority of therapist so inept and irresponsible, there must be a way to hold them accountable for the emotional damage they inevitable cause their clients when a relationship is severed. I am not saying that one must go on a suing spree, but these irresponsible psychotherapist who directly harm their clients with their behavior, MUST be held accountable. The least that can be done is, the clients must write a written memo of why he or she decided to leave a therapist, and submit that memo to the higher ups in that hospital. At least, this way, data points can be collected on that therapist, and some reality check can be done showing that he or she is not as great as he or the hospital think them to be.

    Unless they go out of their way to help someone, I consider doctors and therapists no different from a service provider like Comcast or Verizon, hence there should be a ‘yelp’ for rating therapists, where clients can rate and review the bad therapists (I am not sure if such a portal already exists?) These measures will force them to pull up their socks and get their act together. Mental health services need to be jolted out of their complacency…this is the first step, I know a lot more work needs to be done. Thanks again for posting this video.

  130. Hello Daniel, I’ve saw your video about open dialogue of Finland.

    I would like to ask you a favor, can you please give me an email of any member of that open dialogue team. I have my brother who suffers from the same problem and he’s tired of psychiatres and their medicines we want to try this. I’m currently living in Finland, I searched on the internet but I cant seem to find any contact infos of those people please help me out it is very very important to us as my brothers situation is getting worse.

  131. Hello everyone.

    I wish everyone a great day.

    I am glad to have a place to write.

    For me from my nurturing family experience, I feel personality splitting is a primary function of society. Thank you.


      • Hello.
        I was born with a learned inadequate response to life (gwc/ .

        There are no facts just opinions and perceptions.

        On a daily basis, to the best of my ability, I choose wholeness, to harm none and to abstain from the psychosis of the collective mind. Psychosis is to make insane through the hypnosis of social conditioning.

        In my opinion from my perception, society does not have a mission statement on wholeness nor provide an accessible path to it.

        In my opinion from my perception, society does permit and provide many many paths to maintain and enlarge personality splitting.

        Thank you Alice Miller, Daniel Macker and eveyone else.


    • I’m in the somewhat unique position of having been told by my mother what happened to me, “There was one night when you were an infant when Daddy nearly scared you to death, and you were never the same.” She told me this on the night he died, and later denied it, so I could never get the details. After years of self-therapy and primal therapy in L.A., some of the details have emerged but the trauma is still unresolved. This is what has come up – crying for her brought him instead, and he stopped the crying by yelling, “Stop it, stop it, stop it…” and putting his hand over my nose and mouth, smothering the crying (me), a mortal threat. The key to accessing this event is through needing her again, but that need equals death for me so it’s extremely well defended. I’ve recently begun practicing total celibacy in an attempt to coalesce that energy and make it palpable. You mentioned “the potential value of celibacy” above. Could you expand on that please?

  132. Daniel,

    So, the only good therapists are the ones you like – hmmm.

    In a decade or so, when you have had time to grow a bit more, please reexamine that sentiment, and see if you can figure out the error in your thinking.

    Be well,

    Licensed Psychologist

    • hi george,
      yes, i continue to reexamine, though i can’t say i’m that drawn to your belittling (and anonymous) style.

      • It is certainly easy to understand that individuals see the world from their own perspective, and often assume this is the way everyone else sees things. But, there are many, many different styles, and many, many types of people and therapists. Seems you are assuming that your perspective is the best or RIGHT one. For instance, I have every right to communicate anonymously, but you have some judgement about that.
        Sorry if you find my critique belittling! I’ll be more direct: It may help if you took things less personally, less from such a strong, egocentric viewpoint.
        You are not drawn to my style – so, I guess I have been eliminated by the judge, from the pool of GOOD therapists! That is very funny.
        Your anti-therapy rant is not helpful to people who need help!
        Signed, Anonymous

            • i think everyone who has anything to do with therapy — that is, therapists and clients alike — judges what makes a good therapist. it’s human to judge — that is, to make assessments and come up with conclusions. i would assume that you do too — but just that in some way you don’t agree with me. though again, i’m not sure exactly what “rant” of mine you’re commenting on — so, frankly, i don’t even know what specifically to reply to here… –daniel

              p.s. about me quitting therapy. well….i gave my clients at least a year’s notice….not that it made it much easier for them (or for me). it wasn’t a fun process, that was for sure. it was very painful. meanwhile, are you really troubled by the fact that i quit being a therapist, or are your just arguing for a sake of arguing? i ask this question genuinely. meanwhile, i never claimed that my blog was a more powerful tool for change than individual therapy. that said, it’s reached a LOT more people — and so have my films — for what that’s worth.

        • Daniel,
          If you really are a good therapist, why did you abandon those who need you. If you know how to be helpful, it would appear that you did a mis-service to humanity to stop your practice! The concept of quitting on your clients troubles me. One-on-one therapeutic contact is far more powerful and potentially life-changing than blogs.
          PS You can tell I am not pleased with your rant about therapy. We should probably communicate off line. Feel free use my email address, if you so wish.

          • I would disagree that someone who is so convinced that homosexuality is a fantastic thing could ever be a good therapist.Also he has problems asserting himself in a mature way with women.Not indicative of a functional adult is it….

        • hi george and david,
          i have mixed feelings about the anonymity thing. sometimes i feel it can be cowardly to remain anonymous, other times not. i actually kept myself anonymous on this website for a while, about nine or so years back, because i was afraid of getting in trouble somehow for being too real. that lasted about a year. i now much prefer to just stand behind my point of view with my real name, though i defend your right, george, to be anonymous. i just am not drawn to the anonymous critique that puts your title out front. that is, i (and others) cannot see what you stand for as a therapist past the little bit you’ve written here. i also am not drawn to your teaching style, as if you’re here to instruct me on the right way. of course, others might say the same thing about me — i recognize that. but one difference is what i perceive (i think correctly) to be your sarcasm in “teaching” me — that is, that you enjoy it, find it funny. meanwhile, i’m not sure exactly what you’re talking about in terms of an anti-therapy rant. perhaps a video i made? i do have one critiquing therapy. if that’s the one, i have a few things to say about it. first, it seems a lot more people find it helpful than don’t — as least as far as the youtube voting goes… and the second thing, i challenge the idea that anyone “needs” therapy. i find that insulting to people. i grant that a lot of people do find therapy useful, but i don’t see that they actually need it. there are so many other things that might help just as well — or better! so i definitely challenge a therapist who says that people “need” therapy. that can be very self-serving. all the best, daniel
          p.s. george, i’m not sure if you’ve poked around my website and looked at other stuff i’ve written or made videos about….. some of it happens to be pretty pro-therapy. maybe you’d even like it…?

          • Daniel,
            I am going to bow out now. Yes, I was referring to the YouTube video about what is wrong with therapy that you made.
            Yes, I really think that therapy can help a lot of people in very profound ways; so I am bothered a bit by your video–but not too much. People will find what is right for them, in any case.
            I personally try to live in the moment, as much as possible, and don’t read much anymore, including blogs. It is all way to black and white for me, in a world that is so full of shades of grey!
            Good Luck, as the years then decades roll by. I hope, you will find it interesting to see how there is less and less judgement and more acceptance as the decades pass.
            Dr George A Aiken

            • hi George,
              okay. i don’t know about more acceptance for me, though. the older i get it seems the more screwed up the world is….and is becoming.
              meanwhile, i see you went to saybrook. i know some good folks who went there. do you know tom greening?
              all the best to you,

              • Tom was my mentor at Say rook for 6 years and was the chair of my Masters Thesis. He is still a great friend!
                Do you get his emailed poetry? You might want to get on his email list. BTW: Tom is a master of acceptance. Acceptance doesn’t mean you approve, just that you do not have any attachment or aversion. Then you can be more effective.
                All best,

  133. Hi Daniel
    I know that you are right about childhood trauma. I was a drug and alcoholic for years and it took me nearly 10 years to find the source of my pain because therapists and other “healers” misled me . When I found my truth, I wrote a letter to my mother. I would like to share the content of this letter with you, but I don’t want to post it on you website.

  134. Dear Mr. Mackler,
    I came across your your you tube about psychotherapy when I was (and am) in the process of stopping being a psychotherapist. As you know, it is a struggle. I have been at it a long time and it seems none of my friends have any intention of retiring and have little patience for listening to me. Your voice is so welcome and helpful.
    We share many opinions about psychotherapy. I few years ago I wrote a loving critique of the field which I believe you would find interesting. I would be happy to send you a copy if you give me an address or if you prefer you can get it on Amazon: “In Praise of Psychotherapists – how change occurs despite baffling theory and bureau”
    All best wishes,
    James McMahon

  135. Hey Daniel,

    I’ve been working on recovering from Childhood Trauma seriously for about a year and a half since I found a legit therapist who sides with the child. Her practice puts 98% of the work into my hands with individual therapy that I tend to nightly through journaling and dream interpretation. I’m starting to pick up the fragments of my life following a complete collapse, doing a career I now realize wasn’t authentic. As you portrayed in your YouTube video, this shit isn’t easy by any stretch of the imagination.

    I sat in my room trying to feel my brothers death, and hop back into reality. Helpless to feel genuine feelings, but I now realize that the later trauma of my brothers death that happened when I was 21 wasn’t the root trauma that occurred. I split his death off and powered on with ease, disguised as mental toughness and false courage. I feel the burning sensation and heat rising from my abdomen from time to time, but in small increments. From what you explain, it comes up at once. I know I’m close to feeling that hell, knowing that truth and genuine healing is on the other side.

    On a scale from 100 being dissociated and 0 being not, I feel like I’m at about 10%. This last stretch is hell and feels like the mountain I’ve climbed for the past 3 years has this final vertical cliff I have to get up.

    How did the process of healing the trauma through the body unfold for you. Were you expecting it as it came up? Or did the process unfold on it’s own naturally.

    Thanks for everything you’ve published.


    • hi alex — it’s been a long process for me, and is DEFINITELY still ongoing………… long and slow, but things have shifted….and continue to. not sure exactly where i’m at now…..but growing i suppose……..
      greetings ——

  136. Hello.


    I am writing to thank you for you writings on Alice Miller. I am almost 66 years old. In 2013, I decided through my inner guide, did not know that at that time, to stop everything and find my true self. I had no idea how. I had all kinds of problems all my life. I came to realize that I was the problem. I did not know the problem. I did not know the solution. I was one lost broken person and still am, when I am left to my own desires.

    I was presented with all kind of information. I am familiar with all self-help groups, religions, social groups, etc. Some how things that were hard to grasp was easier. I saw that I am a grown wounded child (, dancing a dance of a wounded soul (Robert Burney), co-dependent(Mellodie Beattie), living an illusion(The Four Agreements). I went to page 118 of the Four Agreements and knew that was my path. The more I wanted to be whole and healthy, the more I was put upon and most of the good things that I wanted and thought needed to be part of were unavailable to me always. I realized that as I reached out I was not helped. I realized that I had to reach into myself, find out how to use the mind rightly, find my true self and love and live it to the best of my ability.
    I read your critique of Alice Miller and I was validated that I have to walk my path to wholeness alone for now but to keep moving forward. Thank you.

  137. Hi Daniel (and all), I am wondering if someone out there can give me a couple tools to help me process what I’m going through. I first became interested in self-therapy a couple years ago, and had been doing a lot of introspection but not really getting anywhere until a few weeks ago. I then had a serious breakthrough, and will never feel the same again. My emotional life has been a real roller coaster of crazy highs and lows since. I spend a lot of time working alone, probably 60 hours a week, during which time I can make a lot of progress and have profound insights into my past and present life. Along with that comes a tremendous amount of grief, pain, as well as positive emotions happiness, even ecstasy. I just feel like a damn broke and I’m really having a hard time processing all the emotions I’m feeling. I do have a yoga practice and do some meditation, but I’m having a hard time concentrating. Last yoga class I attended I broke down into tears several times. I’m wondering if anyone can point me towards any useful tools, techniques, anything really (other than drugs) that can help me process what’s happening without being overwhelmed. Thanks for all the work you’ve done on trauma Daniel, I really appreciate it.

    • hi pat
      greetings. hmm. i’m not sure what to say. it all sounds good as long as you’re not overwhelming yourself. i find that when i’m more emotional in a way i think you’re describing it can help to interact more with others — get others’ feedback, participate in their lives. if i’m too alone i can get overwhelmed. but i’m not sure in your situation. walking is also good for me. and being in nature. but being around friends is really important. all the best, daniel

      • The breaking down in tears in yoga practice should be viewed positively, your body is releasing the pain that we hold in our bodies. Have you tried a yoga practice that includes Kirtan, my yoga teacher gave me mala beads and I do these every day. Having someone to talk with is essential, be it a friend, etc..

  138. toby , since i don´t believe nuch in the positive benefits of haldol at least i get the 50mg depot injection every 60 days because my behaviour and work performance have been stable , i would be dying if I got every 30 days like the interval it is supposed to be used. i plan to continue with the cbt therapy and hopefully find an alternative to psych drugs which make life a complete hell and in my point of view only cause cognitive damage and terrible side ( or main) effects. bye

  139. thanks toby, still one day I would like to stop the psych drugs and substitute it maybe for cbt, thea haldol causes me such terrible akathisia and I have been getting involuntary body movements of diskinesia , it causes me terrible anxiety the whole day and I don`t see it brings any benefit other than having me drowsy and dizzy the whole day. thanks for your advise. I will talk to my psychiatrist about seroquel. Bye

    • Watch out for the (tardive) dyskinesia Fernando. I am sorry you got this (relatively) uncommon side-effect. I hope your psychiatrist is understanding and good with meds. Cheers T

    • My original message was too long so I am re-posting it in bits. Sorry I have not replied to people I have been away from computer!……………………….

      Hi there. I came across your website/blog by accident and was impressed by the ‘more-than averagely’ thoughful things said here (whether I agree a lot or a little in their content!?!).
      I wish to say some stuff really overall to say – >JOLLY GOOD< – in a umbrella sort of way to most of what people are trying to do here.
      Having been myself a psychiatrist (psychotherapist sort of) for the NHS for 20 years and seen a lot of really good 'therapists' and some really crappy ones, I do believe that 'childhood trauma' is not very well dealt with – and as budget-lead reconfigurations, and faddy trends are latched onto, that things only seem to get worse – at least here in the UK.
      Therapists (psychotherapists, counsellors – whatever) are only as good as their ability is to understand, guide, and sometimes – yes – even treat their patients – with compassion (sorry I am not going to call them ‘clients’ or ‘service users’ or other trendy terms). CBT – though seemingly effective in already well-motivated, ’thinking’, ‘middle-class’, worried-well’ types, is almost useless in helping deep-seated problems (of which ‘childhood trauma’ is a part) – it just adds another coat of paint of ‘got to be better’ – ‘follow a programme’ cracks of whatever negative feelings a patient has for themselves. Though some people have sworn bu it – I have never met someone who has actually got better (dealt with stuff) with it – and I was trained in it! It helped be to understand some processes and stuff, but I only occasionally using bits of it in a more ‘ecletic’ style of therapy, when people wanted a ‘programme’. CBT therapist sometimes seems to enjoy being a surrogate ‘school’teacher’ and enjoy the control, homework etc in me right (teacher) you wrong (pupil) sort of way? – or is that just me!?
      Because of my job I met a very large number of folk who had been referred because they were ’depressed’ and pills did not work – or they were out of control ‘crazy’ fucked up (professional diagnosis – rubbish though it is – is Borderline Personality Disorder). I would say that a very large proportion turned out to be having problems with relationships – parents, partners or lack of them – or what I term ‘shit-life-syndrome’ – by what I mean is ‘misery’ – whether imposed from outside or from within. Of course anti-depressants weren’t going to work to change that (or rarerly). – nor was CBT! UInderneath it all though (and their behaviour often lead people to run a mile) was rather nicem caring, sensitive souls who had just got to the end of their tethers and felt helpless (exactly what their ‘clinicians’ felt too, and resented them for making them feel useless!),
      Preceeding ‘where they are now’ problem was so often a ‘devalued’ experience – not receiving enough care emotionally – in their upbringing. Emotional abuse or childhood trauma so often emotes images of physical or sexual abuse or being locked in a cupboard or whatever. What I found really sad is that frequently the patient had not got a shocking childhood history of ‘ab’use – just chronic neglect driven by busy parents, not enough time, etc. who replaced parenting quality/quantity activity with ‘stuff’. An overall feeling of being deprived and somehow responsible for their deprived expoeriences and having spent a lot of their childhood trying to parent their parents! Typically the ‘you have a roof over your head, what’s your problem’-style put-down from behind the newspaper. This progressed into their adult relationships, and lead to real ‘ab’use from demanding unreasonable partners pretending to be the ‘knight in shinind armour’ (or female equivalent) parent fix-all’ needs person, but actually a child demanding you to be a parent ( AGAIN!) and a skilled liar (even to themselves sometimes). The patient had ‘mug…abuse me…I’ll be nice’ written in big letters across their foreheads!
      At best the patient would go from inadequate relationship to inadequate relationship in a rather unsatisfactory way; at worst they would stay in one being controlled and mistreated until they were discarded for someone else.
      Mainly this was women being ‘ab’used by men, but not the vast majority – and only in the extreme situation of a psychiatrist office where they were deemed ‘ill’ (as in diseased’ – not just ‘a bit fucked up’).

      • …..(continued)…….

        Widely simplifying it – women turn in on themselves when damaged (hence their over-representation in depressive-style mental health situations) and men outward (aggression, alcohol, crime). I saw many ‘well’ men (and women) behaving as they were ‘expected’ and being controlled by damaged women/men in their need for acceptance, unable to trust and enjoy intimacy, love or whatever except by control.
        Less inaccurately some men are rather feminine in their ‘reaction’ to life and DON’T ‘chase women’, turn to aggression or whatever….ditto some women are mpore ‘man-like’ in their behaviour when emotionally damaged. They REALLY struggled because they didn’t fit the moulds of behaviour imposed by society – the ‘stereotypes’ if you like.
        I am the first to admit that I felt dumped on – as the most senior ‘clinician’ (doctors are slagged off but when the chips are down the problems are always passed to you!) I had either to try to care for these folk myself or discharge them (which having met them I felt really bad about doing – GUILT!). Worst still I could label them as ‘treatment resistant depression’ (or other misery label)and give them larger and more interesting combination of drugs or refer to psychotherapists who would often refuse to see them because they were ‘too risky’ (suicidal behaviour – overdoses etc) or didn’t have a ‘goal of treatment’. All rather rejecting and convenient for the therapist.
        Not that pills sometimes were helpful (and one occasionally diagnosed something really weird like a missed endocrine problem, sleep apnoea etc), but generally I and others had to deal with it. Discharge was relatively pointless anyway because they would just be re-referred back ! That’s the NHS for you!
        Necessity being as it was – and a certain amount of compassion and trying to be ‘good enough’ myself when presented with misery, rather than blaming the patient for failing to ‘comply’…..what to do – after a lot of mainly fruitless research into ‘what to do’ (this was the early 1990’s – no computers, blogs, etc!) – all pretty rubbish – no one seemed to have a clue, but all sorts of ‘claims’. Nothing much scientific (by which I mean provable/evidence-based NOT anecdotal) and a load of charlatan crap about crystals and auras and guru-abuse type abuser culty nonsense – e.g. the DREADFUL Dialenics – the mental health cure-all from Scientology – and less worrying more well-meaning stuff like Primal Scream Arthur Janov stuff.

        So – common-sense set in………
        The patients were given boundaries that were reasonable, and their aberrant end-stage’ behaviour of overdosing and threatening and fury and rage (or the opposite – coquettishness) were accepted but not rewarded (or punished) as their way to cope now. Several furiousness activities later – no one died etc….
        I started asking the patient the simply question – ‘what do you want’, in the context of relationships/happiness etc. These were very needy but usually decent, caring people who just kept on falling into traps laid by abusers (also desperate for a controllable love). They all felt empty and devalued entering adulthood – even if they appeared successful/pretty/handsome/clever/nice to others.
        What I found most shocking 9but so boringly sad and boringly obvious) was the common trend that these patients (and far more apparently well people I met ‘out there in the ‘normal’ world) could not cope with being alone. They would be straight into another relationship within weeks or months of another ending.. They could not be alone. Having ‘loved’ someone’, they would have a brief ‘crisis’ and then be straight into another with someone who said all the right things (lied) …for awhile and ‘loved them’ too. I would often joke that they must have gone to a shop for a new relationship.
        Without further babbling….the biggest things I found to help these folk:
        Obviously developing a trusting therapeutic relationship (not that easy if I was seen as the abusive ‘man’) – unsurprisingly they had VERY low expectations of what a trusting relationship was– basically I just had to be consistent, nice, obviously not cross any ‘love’ boundaries despite a regular flirtatious tendancy (– not towards me per se me – I was just a parent figure!), and tell the truth, kindly, and be available within reason when they asked. To point out that just because I wasn’t always available I did care. Often the partners could not cope with their over-demanding need for attention. Caring for someone is not the same as always being there. So handing back their feelings of rejection projected onto me – in a kind fashion….etc etc etc.

        • ………..continued )…..last bit!..

          Firstly – to suggest to them that they don’t go out with anyone for at least 6 months (or longer) and just do stuff with friends or family for its own sake.
          Secondly – during this time they were just to observe as best they could their ‘alone time’ and see what it felt like.
          Thirdly – I asked them to consider how they could be ’in love’ with one person and then after such a short time be ‘in love’ with someone else. Those that could manage these things became REALLY aware of their search for someone ‘NOW’ who would fix the ‘THEN’ – and how unlikely that was as they would ACTUALLY end up with someone LEAST likely to be capable of that.
          This was no easy fix, but it started them on a road to notice their attempt to fill an unbearable hole of ‘something’ (neediness, lack of love, self-loathing, unlovability) that they struggled to confront – instead to paper over the ‘cracks’ (gapping hole!) with frantic avoidance of being alone – what they called ‘being in love’ temporarily seemed to work……. ditto addictions, workaholics, exercise freaks, fame-seekers, etc (though I rarely met these more hidden damaged folk at work – I met them frequently ‘out there’ and even failed to help a girlfriend I was deeply in love with who was trapped in her neediness and went on into a ‘status’ relationship – I wasn’t ‘cool’ enough!
          What was really amazing and heart-warming was that these very damaged people started to fix themselves….sometimes…..and many went on to happy and kind lives (so often they were nicer than ‘normal’ people) and certainly did not need so much ‘therapy’ thereafter.
          You may ask why I talk in so much detail. I too came from a ‘traumatic’ childhood without really understanding it all (or wanting to fix it – despite my training!), but more by luck than judgement (unwittingly – maybe subconsciously) tried to use my bad experiences for the good of others. I did a pretty good job, so I have been told, but I too fell into the trap that others who had a crappy childhood. In my case my abuser was my employers – my relationship – the NHS. I tried TOO hard to prove my worthiness and allowed myself to be treated pretty awfully by those who professed to ‘care’. It lead to my own profound depression and rejection by my ‘partner’ (employer) when I no longer ‘did what they wanted’. Certainly it contributed to my ‘not entirely successful’ sense of worth in the girlfriend department too. I so much wanted to distance myself from what I call ‘hunter-killer-shag-king’ male predatory stereotypes (what I saw aa abusers0 and sold myself short.
          Depression (and shit life syndrome as I call the misery that sometimes seems to occur in life) is a wake-up call. I have spent 5 years beginning to do stuff differently – I am not fixed, and I am still the same reasonably nice caring guy (like most of the abused patients I saw) but am much better able to notice and distance myself from ‘takers’. Whether they be obvious criminals, bosses, prospective girlfriends, friends or clients.
          I am much happier, and don’t care that I no longer earn £100k+ ( I never really did – but it DID help to pay off my mortgage thank goodness!). It is more important to still care for my ‘community’ independent of a abusive ‘institution’ (whether it be a relationship or work-environment or family), and able to choose who I have to ‘look after’ – and feel less urge to do so TOO!.
          I do odd jobs to supplement my income as an artist, still do some ‘gratis’ ‘life coaching’ and give advice to doctors/chums unofficially who are pissed off with the crap advice they get elsewhere. I CHOSE who I deal with whether personally, or professionally.
          —– > And that is the point…when a person has be starved of the ‘appropriate’ care (and that is really difficult to define – what is ‘appropriate’/good enough?) they will go out into life and be more vulnerable to NOT get what they deserve because they exude a ‘desperation’ (often well hidden) that others – predators (even if very needy themselves) spot as easy ‘care-givers’, to be abused in turn. OR alternatively don’t ask for care when they deserve it because they feel undeserving, so are handicapped in expressing love or whatever, Double whammy! <—————
          I certainly don’t(nor did I ever) have all the answers…..
          Whatever the ‘therapy’ – the road to recovery from ‘childhood trauma’ (or whatever it is called) – involves an individual being helped to recognise they need to first stop what they are doing – retreat to a ‘safe place’, think about stuff, accept the ‘hole of need’ (or whatever it is called), learn how to be with oneself first (love oneself – whatever). Only then will one be able to trust the RIGHT people – not the best at telling one what one wants to hear – and thus recognise appropriate love from others and give and take appropriately – ‘innate sociality’ I think were the words Jean Liedhoff used (mentioned elsewhere – which is in her Continuity Concept book) to talk about accepting and being within a community of respect and stuff  . ‘Give and Take Appropriately’ is often talked about in the ‘Human Givens’ movement (can’t nb authors), which I don’t necessarily agree with as a theory or a ‘cure-all’, but has it’s sensible ideas in amongst the ‘we are REALLY right more than anyone else’ silliness.
          What is so irritating about these ‘pop psychology’ guru types ( and more scary Scientologists etc) is they get rather over-excited about how amazing they are and get all cult-ish and otherwise absolutist. Then end up shagging a load of people (girls usually) or getting really rich and generally take advantage of the vulnerable and gullible – which is rather NOT the point of ‘therapy’ – enlightened ways etc.
          Good therapist are good enough (though imperfect)– bad ones are bad, but are SO good at appearing amazing! – the first hurdle for the abused is to tell the difference – OUCH!
          Hope this has been helpful to you …It has been helpful to me to think about it all again!  and Regards

          (originally cropped post – a week or so ago!)

      • As one in the Psych field, I am wondering if you or anyone else know of any Therapists in the Central California Coast area that share your thoughts and ideology in working with clients? I would love to have one that is caring and a bit sensitive to the unique challenges faced by ethnic minority individuals with mental health issues.

        • As I am over here in the UK – I am sorry I can’t be of help – knowing no one in California – though a couple of my pictures are near San Francisco!. Having worked in a city (Gloucester, UK) with a large South Asian, ‘black’ (British/African/Caribean) and Eastern European populations – sorry there are so manyconflicting and confusing ‘PC’ terms I have fallen back on census terminology (that makes me ‘white British’ instead of the old ‘caucasian’ – I am ‘pinkish’ and ‘blacks’ are multitudinous shades of ‘brown’ and aubergine-ish – but there you go) – you are right that people of different cultures need to be sensitive to each other in mental health. Even the terms ‘client/patient/service-user’ causes upset, but no one quite knows what anyone should call each other anymore – or rather are told what to feel outraged about. I was discriminated against as well for being white and ‘posh’, male, heterosexual, single slim…etc. SO I gave up being PC and concentrated on trying to get people better. Unfortunately my ‘PC’ bosses did not agree! Hence me doing something else now outside big organisations – who quite frankly and generally awful. I DO hope EOB that you find a therapist who is effective, whether they are an ‘expert’ on you culture or is (more importantly) willing and able to see you as an individual by nature of who YOU are and also how you were nutured – within the culture of family, community and wider ‘tribe’/race. I think this is more important. Though I came from a ‘posh’ white background, I did not fulfil the stereotypes of those that saw me, beyond the shallow stuff. I certainly didn’t sit around drinking sherry and listening to opera, which is what I kept on having to say! Discrimination – and understanding and respect – goes both ways. BEST OF LUCK EOB. I would imagine that your tapping into sites like Daniel’s means that you will have the confidence to find the ‘right’ therapist for you – looking beyond the certificates and the superficial. 🙂

          • Hi Toby, could you help me? I was diagnosed with many different things- have been on ‘anti-psychotics’ for many years, 13 in total. Aged 31 I am now suffering muscle spasms- I was diagnosed with indifferent schizophrenia- abroad- that was my latest diagnosis abroad in 2007- 23 years the time I remember them saying to me that it was organic, was that their way of saying I had suffered brain damage which was impossible to cure.. that I was retarded.?..I had been on olanzapine, quetiapine, clozapine, haloperidol, etc.before this. I was born perfectly healthy, no brain damage whatsoever…..or any accidents, I was bilingual, spoke 2 languages from a very early age….. I enjoyed music, playing the piano since the age of 6, violin, guitar. Looking back I was shy at school… was studious, never took drugs, enjoyed my music, and studying….I have been tapering off since 2013 from these psychotropics.. they have not been monitored since 2007 because quite frankly I did not want to see anyone..and just saw someone briefly in 2013 so that I could be prescribed the lower doses of drugs…since I would say 2014 I have felt paralysed from the neck upwards,, my neck seems to twist to one side…and having gone various times to my GP since 2014 without any help, I decided to do my own research…and heard about dystonia…do you know of any therapists apart from mind charity rethink, sane etc… who would be able to help… I am based in the UK.. and am really desperate for help..

            • Hi Samantha, Sorry to hear of the many difficulties you have experienced, and the lack of clarity. Your brief story is depressively common….multiple drugs, side-effects, inevitable discrepancies as you seek help from different sources. It SOUNDS as if you have developed a quite rare side-effect. Tardive dystonia. I never saw a case in 20 years of psychiatry. It can happen bizarrely when you REDUCE antipsychotic medication. If you get it in the neck (a more common site for it) it resembles torticollis – a spasm of the sterno-cleido-mastoid muscle ( I think), causing twisting of your neck to the opposite side and upwards and restriction of movement …etc. THAT used be treated with botulinum toxin injections (botox – used long before its use now for wrinkles removal), though I am not sure whether it works for tardive dystonia or whether there are now more modern treatments. It is really unlikely that GPs would know about it as it is REALLY rare and specialist knowledge stuff. I am actually surprised that I remember it! I will go and look it up to check I remember correctly! You do the same. ‘Indifferent schizophrenia’ is probably something that losses something in translation from a foreign language. I SUSPECT it is – or sounds like – ‘undifferentiated schizophrenia’ OR ‘schizophrenia – not otherwise specified’ (different disease classifications (DSM 4 (USA) or ICD10 (UK) have a ‘specifically vague’ way or saying – “….well it sounds like schizophrenia (or depression or anxiety disorder etc) but it is NOT a ‘classic case’ that easily fits into the other types we’ve just listed… we’ll call it…’undifferentiated’, ‘atypical’, or ‘not otherwise specified’…….”. ‘Organic’ is another ‘specifically vague’ confusing word (whether you are buying foods or the medical use of the word for a mental illness!). ‘Organic’ suggests that there is a ‘physical’ abnormality. I have never used the term as far as I remember for a mental illness UNLESS there is a clear history of a physical trauma (such as head injury etc) and even better an MRI/CT scan evidence of a lesion to back up the ‘physical trauma’ – that precipitated the mental illness or ‘personality change’. I didn’t use the term because it just causes confusion as the patient goes and looks it up (as you have done) and understandably gets the impression that their doctors think they are ‘brain damaged’ or ‘retarded’ – as you have done. Jargon can be used for good but also can be VERY confusing and lazily used. Unless you have forgotten something you clearly were not born with nor acquired brain damage. No wonder you are confused! Though you have probably got sick of psychiatrists and understandably want to avoid them, I think it would be sensible to ask to be seen again – via your GP – I’m a little surprised they have not suggested it. I would have been concerned if a patient of mine had not been reviewed at least once a year and had access to a team of mental health workers, who could answer the questions you clearly have. It is imperative that you discuss this (sounds like) tardive dystonia with someone really on the ball about it. I am no longer practicing as I got sick of being told I was a trouble-maker for highlighting bad practice and laziness, while being wildly overworked. I have on occasions been happy to review someone’s medical notes for free, but only for people I know (e.g. a friend’s girlfriend’s son who I suspected had side-effects – akathisia – and got them changed to a better drug) as both they and I felt comfortable with it – and it has to be documented in the nhs or other official records that I have done so. IF you can be courageous enough to go and get reviewed but a psychiatrist and you are still unhappy….do get back to me. However before you do that….for your own peace of mind – check me out via google/GMC to make sure I am (or was kosher!)…..also tell the psychiatrist/GP that you are unhappy and want a ‘second opinion’. I could probably find a still practicing psychiatrist who you could check out to do that too….but I would suspect that they would reasonably want to charge for the several hours it would take to read through your medical notes and make suggestions. If you have a relative or trusted friend do talk to them about your frustrations and concerns. I really hope you get some answers and don’t feel desperate enough having taken further action to have to contact someone like me to get what you really should deserve to get from the nhs. Really best wishes for the future.


              • hi, toby,
                thank you for your response. I have been a victim of psychiatric malpractice.. A bit of my medical history: In my medical notes it stated from one psychiatric consultant that his intention was to harm my brain and give me brain damage.. but this I read after he had told me one of the many myths that schizophrenia causes brain justify giving me psychiatric drugs I suppose..that sent me into a fit of tears and sobs. All this happened in 2005. I ran all the way to the hospital the following day…When I went to confront him, he then spoke to me like a nonentity and shouted at me.This sent me into a panic attack in front of him. Next thing I know is I am accused of kicking him and punching him, and he tried hard to institutionalise me. One consultant then writes back on my behalf and supports me. I was very underweight, and being forced to take drugs 20 mg of olanzapine by crisis teams. I refused, was told that it was my right to stop and suffered withdrawal effects. I lost my memory, did not know where I was and went to A&E in my pyjamas I would spend days on end sitting not knowing where I was..what time of day it was etc. Anyway I was sectioned for 28 days against my will and is an experience I will never forget for all the wrong reasons… horrible.. prior to this I had a wonderful memory which I miss and healthy brain… my teachers always commented that I learnt quickly and I would say I could remember many things.. I could sing.. I could compose,,,I look fine once you see me but this has debilitated me so much… my parents tried to write letters to consultants.. these were ignored..they were practically barred from any information…. . I don’t know…..I went abroad to a clinic and they said that I had suffered from the zyprexa.. quetiapine…etc etc and the many other drugs which I cannot remember had been very potent.. I was diagnosed parkinsonism… headaches.. and I had a brain scan MRI… anyway I was just thinking that maybe the abilify that I was prescribed may have even been a worse offender than the olanzapine, Seroquel I have been on it for over 7 years now.. they probably thought that I had brain damage from the drugs.. I could hardly vocalise anything… it is after 10 years that I am having to ask my self questions: why? why did they bear a grudge on me so much as to cause such harm..i internalised this grudge and hated myself…. now that I am confronting these questions. However the older I am the more I suffer and the more it hurts….I was relieved by your response, would you happen to know if dystonia is permanent.. I think it resembles what is called cerebral palsy.. .yet I was born perfectly healthy, and there are no genetic illnesses in my brain or in my family…how could they justify this I do not know.. anyway I will try to see a psychiatrist via my GP. I really need help.. and am quite desperate for answers. I would be prepared to see anyon e if they could give me any indication of hope.. I cannot change what happened but I would like a good quality of life…given my circumstances… thank you for responding to me once again..I can see you are one of the few, psychiatrists like you are in short supply…thanks Toby..

  140. Hi there. I came across your website/blog by accident and was impressed by the ‘more-than averagely’ thoughful things said here (whether I agree a lot or a little in their content!?!).
    I wish to say some stuff really overall to say – >JOLLY GOOD And that is the point…when a person has be starved of the ‘appropriate’ care (and that is really difficult to define – what is ‘appropriate’/good enough?) they will go out into life and be more vulnerable to NOT get what they deserve because they exude a ‘desperation’ (often well hidden) that others – predators (even if very needy themselves) spot as easy ‘care-givers’, to be abused in turn. OR alternatively don’t ask for care when they deserve it because they feel undeserving, so are handicapped in expressing love or whatever, Double whammy! <—————
    I certainly don’t(nor did I ever) have all the answers…..
    Whatever the ‘therapy’ – the road to recovery from ‘childhood trauma’ (or whatever it is called) – involves an individual being helped to recognise they need to first stop what they are doing – retreat to a ‘safe place’, think about stuff, accept the ‘hole of need’ (or whatever it is called), learn how to be with oneself first (love oneself – whatever). Only then will one be able to trust the RIGHT people – not the best at telling one what one wants to hear – and thus recognise appropriate love from others and give and take appropriately – ‘innate sociality’ I think were the words Jean Liedhoff used (mentioned elsewhere – which is in her Continuity Concept book) to talk about accepting and being within a community of respect and stuff  . ‘Give and Take Appropriately’ is often talked about in the ‘Human Givens’ movement (can’t nb authors), which I don’t necessarily agree with as a theory or a ‘cure-all’, but has it’s sensible ideas in amongst the ‘we are REALLY right more than anyone else’ silliness.
    What is so irritating about these ‘pop psychology’ guru types ( and more scary Scientologists etc) is they get rather over-excited about how amazing they are and get all cult-ish and otherwise absolutist. Then end up shagging a load of people (girls usually) or getting really rich and generally take advantage of the vulnerable and gullible – which is rather NOT the point of ‘therapy’ – enlightened ways etc.
    Good therapist are good enough (though imperfect)– bad ones are bad, but are SO good at appearing amazing! – the first hurdle for the abused is to tell the difference – OUCH!
    Hope this has been helpful to you …It has been helpful to me to think about it all again!  and Regards

      • Hi Daniel – I left a rather TOO long post – and it got shortened (maybe understandably) by about 2/3. Did you receive the whole thing and cut it down? That’s okay I suppose. The result though is the post is a bit disjointed and rather misses the point of me writing. I copied and pasted so have the original…..await instructions. 🙂

        • hi toby
          no, i didn’t cut it down. probably there’s some built-in limit to word length, but i don’t know. maybe you can break it up into parts and re-post?

    • Hi,

      I really became puled towards your post, and I wanted to ask you, what do you think makes a bad therapist so bad, AND gives them what quality of being so good, and likewise with the good psychologists? Where have you learned and what gave you this type of understanding?


      • Oops – Hi Sergio – I wrote a VERY long post and it was shortened by about 2/3! I wrote quite a lot about my experiences and personal stuff. Maybe Daniel would allow me to place the whole post (in sections if necessary – I spent a couple of hours writing!) that might go some way to answer your query? It’s ‘a little late’ (UK time 2.30 a.m.) and I just got up for a snack and noticed I got a response as forgot to turn off computer – but will return tomorrow, when brain in full order! ::

        • Hi Sergio – sorry It has taken so long to reply….life sometimes gets complicated (fortunately this time – mostly GOOD)…

          I could be criticised for making the destuinctionbetween ‘god’ and bad’ therapist too black and white, when of course they are on a spectrum – and I do not believe that any therapist is ‘perfect’.

          By the way my post of the 11th was too long for the site programme to cope with…..and I have now reposted it in full following advice from Daniel (thanks)

          A ‘bad’ therapist is someone who could EG – blame the patient/client for not ‘ fitting’ the type of therapy that the therapist is using (a common one for purists which can be a trait of e.g. rigid CBT-ers) – whether consciously or otherwise….so when the therapy doesn’t work – it is the patient’s fault – thus perpetuating the ‘it’s my fault’ mind-stet that is so often part of the abused person’s ‘problem’.

          The other issue is that therpists bang on about keeping a therapeutic distance and non-self-disclosure etc, which CAN be an excuse (and is certainly easier) for not getting ‘involved’ in the emotions of the patient.

          I have found that the therapist has to MEET the patient/client ‘in the middle’ and engage them in a safe healthy therapeutic alliance where the patient (child) experiences how ‘it should have been’ with the ‘parent’ (therapist) and is de-sensitised from ‘good/bad’ shunting, that so plagues their adult lives. All meaningful relationships (and people) are actually somewhere between perfect and 100% awful…..

          • …..(continued)
            The patient experiences the ‘intimacy’ of the therapist withpout the therapist crossing a line into ‘abuse’. Id you think about it most abusers have to groom their victims. The victims fear the grey of intimacy and affection…but paradoxically the only people they end up trusting as adults are the people most able to persuade them that they are ‘believable’ -ie the best liars…..who tell them what the want to hear….
            SO the role of a therapist is to allow the cclient.patient tolearn that ‘care’, love’ etc is also about telling the truth, being able to be angry without being rejected (or worse), and NOT big dramas, emotional extremes, or trying harder and harder to be nice so the abuser will love them….

            Sorry if I have waffled on….I did have to deal with people who were really traumatised and were self-harming, threatening and being rejected by mental health services as ‘untreatable’.

            Hope that’s helpful in a specifically vague sort of way.

            • It was, and I’m just seeing it now. Thank you. It makes me think I have an excellent psychologist at the moment. I work with Dr. Ann Louise Silver, and it wouldn’t have been possible without Mr Mackler. So thank you for your response and thank you Mr. Mackler for showing me the door towards my recovery.

              • sergio—you’re welcome. and i’m glad to hear you’ve connected with ann silver. i like her very much. she’s been very helpful to me over the years, and i am grateful to her. daniel

                • sergio,
                  it all started in 2005, when i wrote a paper critiquing gail hornstein’s book on the german psychiatrist frieda fromm-reichmann. it’s here, actually: ann silver was one of the first to read it, and was the first to see its value. i actually wrote about ann here on this website, and on how she helped me:

                  but even beyond this little essay, ann has been someone who is very generous of spirit with me. she saw my value in ways that almost no one in the mental health profession did up to that point. she became a sort of mentor to me in my growth in the field, especially around my writing and filmmaking about that thing labeled as psychosis. she was one of the first people whom i told i wanted to make a film on psychosis (back when i knew nothing about filmmaking), and she was very supportive of the idea (and many people were not — many thought i couldn’t make a worthwhile film that would reach a lot of people). she also was instrumental in getting me connected with david garfield, a psychiatrist with whom i wrote my first book, which got published by routledge: it was on her recommendation that he took me on as co-writer. and she was very helpful in getting another of my books published: ann also gave the main blurb for my film “coming off psych drugs”. you can see it here, at the top of the image: basically, i like ann silver very much. she’s a kind, generous woman whom i respect highly and whose heart is in the right place. she’s also willing to take brave stands — publicly. i admire that. if more people in the mental health field thought like her it would be a totally different mental health system………… all the best!! daniel

    • I have been writing a series critiquing the psychology industry for Psychotherapy Australia and enjoyed your rationale for quiting therapy. One critic uses the lovely term ‘the psychological industrial complex’ and warns against the excesses of of over-pathologising individuals to create demand for therapy. Create demand increase profit. Have you come accross the work of Tana Dineen Canadian psychologist who wrote Manufacturing Victims. Very succinct analysis of the psychology industry.

      • Hi Maurice – sorry it took awhile to reply – got side-tracked with life! I have not read Tana Dineen’s work but I will certainly look it up. Though I am no longer work (salary anyway!) in mental health/psychotherapy I still am interested in it all! Thank you for the suggestion. I thoroughly agree (loosely) with the ‘manufacturing illness’ concerns. It certainly is going on now in the NHS – now that it is being morphed into a ‘business-model’ type outfit of generating demand. That’s why I had no option but to leave my job and do something a little more morally coherent! Cheers T

  141. Hi Daniel!
    Just finishing to read “Into the wild truth”, author: Carine McCandless: starting from the title, i think it’s a perfect example of the fact that there is just one truth, and people, before or after (or never), converge to it.

  142. Hi Daniel , I am your fan Fernando, I am receiving an Haldol 50mg/ml depot injection every 60 days which gives me terrible negative effects. My glucose blood level is very high at 130, I`ve gained a lot of weight and my general health is terrible. With my psychologista we have been doing CBT and I have been having very good progress and I am in therapy with him for four months. I like cbt a lot . The psychologist sent me to a psychiatrist so I can be changed to some softer or milder tablets. I am going to talk with the psychiatrist about it so what can I suggest to him or if you could give me a suggestion of what the medications with the least negative side effects are. The haldol gives me terrible anxiety and nervousness the whole day and I can`t concentrate and work well. Are benzos, antidepressants, SSRI`s, antianxiolitics, mood stabilizers, typical antipsychotics or atipycal antipsychotics more recomendable? Which type of medication is the least potent and powerful and won´t cause me so much anxiety and will let me be alert and concentrated so I work well and cause the least long term damage? Maybe you know a drug or type of that is soft or mild and is used at the end of the process of tapering off drugs? My father forces me to take psych drugs and they cause me a lot of problems and are a terrible burden. He and the doctors have forced me to take medications and given me ect and have never asked me for an informed consent. He is abusing my human rights. Thank you Daniel

    • Hi Fernando, Though I have given up my medical practice within the NHS, and it sounds as if you are American (?) and so things are a ‘little different’ there…could I make a few suggestions? Please feel free to reject them all as it is not brilliant practice to comment based on limited information. These comments are about medication generally rather than you – the individual’ who is taking medicine……

      It sounds as if someone has decided that you have to take medicine as you weren’t ‘very good’ at taking pills. This restricts the types of medicine you can take and unfortunately the depot meds CAN give people lots of side-effects – sounds as if you have akathisia, which is a deeply unpleasant restless feeling that drive people crazy. It is a little strange that you are on the injection only every 60 days, which means you are likely to experience variations in your levels (and thus the effectiveness) of the medicine… Why?
      Because we don’t know the exact reason for you being on the Haldol (it can be used to ‘calm emotions’ as well as for schizophrenia or other psychoses) it is a little difficult to give specifics about alternatives…however – again writing about drugs in general…..each individual and the drug that suits them varies enormously (in the same why as one person might love marzipan and someone else hate it – I am the latter!). I would hope that the psychiatrist you see would at least consider a drug such as Quetiapine (also called Seroquel in the UK). Though it comes in slo release form the vast majority of my patients did not like this version and preferred the ‘normal tables. The good thing about them (among others) is that though it is recommended to take twice a day, it can of course just be taken at night. It has a calming effect (it can even be taken to help anxiety and sleep in depression in lower doses of 100-200mg at night). Though it TOO can cause side-effects (including the blood-sugar problems you have) it seems lesslikely to cause the restlessness (akathisia) that you have mentioned. It can (in the UK at least) be given WITH Haldol, and if it suits you, then the Haldol can just be left to fadeout of your blood-stream (takes about 2-3 months). The problem you have is that your father will be suspicious of you changing to a pill as it seems you don’t (or at least didn’t) want to take medicines in the past….so there might be a lot of negotiations to have with them! Another point…..IF you are taking Haldol( or ANY anti-psychotic) for a psychosis – then it is REALLY unlikely that you will be able to come off medication entirely. As a trained CBT therapist (too) for psychosis (and other conditions) I would be really careful to stop medications – certainly not after 4 months of therapy. I would like to add at this point that NHS doctors have no motivation to prescribe medications as we our salaries are unrelated to what, when, how much, we prescribe. Of course there are some dubious people in every profession who get bribed to peddle stuff, and the same is probably true of doctors (I went on a couple of nice conferences paid for by drug-companies in the past – but was not swayed by their ‘optimistic’ stories of how amazing their drugs were!). SO I am not saying that because I like it – or benefit from it – it is just the reality.

      If however you are being prescribed Haldol for other reasons (such as for ’emotional dysregulation’ – jargon for – being all over the place with your feelings – a common consequence of childhood trauma or part of the diagnosis of ‘borderline personality disorder’ – then that is another matter. alsorts of medicines can (or cannot) be helpful, but it is rather hit or miss – so I can’t add anything more useful.

      Best of luck Fernando. You really need to communicate really well about your fears and concerns, which is likely to be difficult.

  143. Thanks for sharing all your work. I’m so encouraged by your idea of self therapy. I had to recently terminate my therapy with an amazing analyst due to overwhelming feelings for them. Oh well…So now instead of feeling distraught I’m feeling empowered!! Will be checking back often during my times of weakness.
    I do feel bad for all the therapists out there though having to deal with people like me falling in love with them left and right!! 🙂

      • Ive sometimes wondered if erotc transference occurs when a therapist hasn’t done enough of their own healing and are still projecting unconscious needs of wanting to be liked or even loved. Then again, repairing our attachment wounds feels like a lifetime’s work and perhaps there is no such thing as a therapist that is so clear, he/she does not attract any projections. Just a hunch of mine.

        • insightful thought, david. i think that in a lot of cases you’re probably right on the money. i think therapists can induce ALL SORTS of things in their clients because of the therapists’ own unresolved and unacknowledged needs…..

          • Absolutely…..the REALLY important thing is for the therapist to be aware of what they are feeling/experiencing and don’t get the wrong idea – or appallingly – take advantage (despite what some tosser therapists thinks – it is NEVER appropriate to have a sex relationship with a patient/client) – if the patient (client) starts ‘flirting’. This is VERY common in abused people and should ALMOST be expected. If the flirting is recognised (it does not even have to be addressed ‘head-on’) and used to convert into a trusting professional emotionally ‘intimate’ alliance, the patient will hopefully learn that they do not have to flirt (or conversely – reject) to get a response of ‘being cared for’ (loved) as they learnt very confusingly and form care-givers who used ‘love’ (‘grooming’) to get their evil ways. Sorry I have honed in on sexual abuse, but the same sort of thing applies to neglect, physical abuse etc too)

  144. love your work Daniel – you’re way ahead of the curve and maybe in a few centuries/millennia people will laugh at how defended and resistant folk were to your concepts. Sadly, i think it will take that long for humanity to wake up and get more conscious. Like you I am plagued by somatic symptoms as i break away from my father – a holocaust survivor, and heal my attachment traumas. If you ever come to the UK id love to meet up and talk more.

  145. Dear Daniel,

    I would appreciate your take on my therapy situation.

    I have been working with my therapist for almost a year and a half. This has included regular email contact. He is a fairly new therapist and not yet licensed although working towards it.

    We finally uncovered that all my emails will be held as part of my permanent therapy record. He says he has to hold onto all emails with clinical content. I was unaware of this when I wrote all those emails.

    The content of the emails is very raw and vulnerable and the idea of a court being able to subpoena those emails makes me feel sick to my stomach. My therapist says his hands are tied and he cannot delete the emails.

    Is it legitimate for me to be worried about this? I am really mad that I didn’t get a warning that my emails would be part of my record. I would have been much more cautious about what I wrote if I knew this was the case.


    • hi angela,
      hmm, that is something i hadn’t thought about before. when i was a therapist people (clients) emailed me sometimes and i never told them those emails were part of their permanent record. but i guess it would depend if you emailed him at a private clinic email address, or part of a sort of encrypted email system that is connected to your medical records. for instance, i go to a regular doctor (for my physical health) and i communicate with him via a private encrypted messaging system where all our messages are retained as part of my record. i knew that going into it and i have no problem with it. however, if you are just sending him emails to his gmail or hotmail account i don’t see why he can’t just delete them….unless he really is very new and naive and is following every rule that he has heard to the “T”. also, if he’s still a student or intern he is probably being supervised by someone, and maybe somehow the supervisor is tying his hands. but it still sounds strange. but it does sound like your confidentiality is at risk, and when i was in situations like that (as a client) it didn’t make me want to engage much more in therapy. but i don’t know your situation. it may not be serious at all. all the best, daniel

      • The emails were through his therapy website where he has a blog and advertises himself as a therapist. I don’t know if that is a private encrypted messaging system or not. I do know that the emails are redirected to his Gmail account because sometimes he answers me from that.

        He says he has to follow the law. He didn’t even know about the law until a few weeks ago when I was wanting to quit therapy. I was at a really low point of trusting him and said I wanted to see my notes which he put up a fight about. I still never got to see my notes.

        I then asked him to delete all our emails and he said “I don’t know if I can do that.”

        He asked his supervisor and then found out that in fact he could not delete the emails because the law says any emails with clinical content are part of the record.

        Neither of us knew about this law but now he says it applies retroactively to our work. That hurts a lot.

        I have been flip flopping for a while about whether to stay in therapy with him. There are a lot of really positive aspects of our relationship but a lot of hurtful things have happened too. It is my understanding that if things go well I will be getting angry and challenging him which is the point I am at now, so I am not sure if it necessarily means I need to quit.

        • well……that sounds like no fun. i wish i had a good answer for you. best thing i’d say is that i hope you can trust your gut and follow your heart…… daniel

          • Apologies for reading and adding something here. First I agree with Daniel (as a therapist – ex one – myself, and psychiatrist in the NHS – ex), that ti doesn’t all make COMPLETE sense. That said, the general rule (good practice) here is that any correspondence is better to be recorded. Based on such law as tarasoff (sorry for the spelling – where a client disclosed his murderous intent to the therapist and nothing was done and the client went on to attack (?kill) the victim) – the therapist also has to act if the disclosure might put others at risk. The same rule also ap[plies to the therapist’s emails (or other correspondence),which protects the client/patient. That said it is a shame that the therapist was not explicit about the records – especially if emails are a normal part of ‘therapy’. It was a occasional exception in what I and others did – but maybe that is a sign of ‘pre-technology explosion practice’ (I’m getting on a bit at 51!).
            Another thing – you are ‘right’ to expect some pretty unpleasant feelings to come out in therapy and often anger, hatred (and more positive feelings too) can end up being directed towards them (and felt FROM them too!). It is hopefully a sign that you are processing the feelings that you were ‘not allowed to have’ in the past and have not been able to ‘use’ effectively in your more recent relationships (which may have lead to you getting therapy).
            Honest communication with your therapist is important and might be difficult. I would hope that if is he is as ‘good’ as you hope him to be, then he will accept his part in the ‘miscommunication’ and you will both gather benefit from the adult’ ‘row’ that you have had (if you get my drift) and been able to get through as a sign of a mature, development in the therapeutic alliance.

            If he gets all defensive and – ‘well of course I had to do that….’ type ‘parent talking to a child’ (but actually the opposite) way, then you may have to think again. Trusting someone involves the possibility of loosing trust with them, and ‘crises’ of confidence like these either strengthens the ‘trust’ – by revealing the willness to say ‘sorry I was not perfect but you can trust me’ or or reveals the lack thereof – i.e. you must trust =be because I am perfect and you are the one who is wrong’ (abuse relationship)!

            Wild generalisations here, but I hope some use…:)

            Best of luck

            • Hi Toby,

              It is many months later and I just saw your response to what i wrote here. It has been a few months since I have taken a “break” from therapy.

              I am feeling really grossed out by the fact that I spent thousands of dollars for treatment that was supposed to be for me, and it turns out part of what was happening was against my wishes.

              I had no desire for my personal emails to be part of my record and I had no warning that they would be.

              My therapist finally claims to have printed off the emails and is keeping them as a hard copy rather than in email “as a memory aid of all the topics we have discussed.”

              Part of me thinks he is lying and they are still part of my record. I feel really gross about it. I didn’t sign up for this. There are hundreds of personal emails and I’m not sure why he wanted to waste so much ink and paper printing it out unless he is doing it for legal purposes.

              Thanks for giving me your take on it though.

    • Lieber Wolfgang,
      dank Dir für diesen Text. Intergenerationelle Traumtas sind auch für meine eigene Geschichte ein grosses Thema.
      I don’t know, wether Daniel is able to read german 😉
      but for this article about alice Miller I think he should try to…

      • Liebe Andrea,

        ich vermute du sprichst perfekt Deutsch und hast nicht google translate benutzt:-)

        Daniel kann einigermassem Deutsch. Leider gibt es das Buch von Millers Sohn nur in Deutsch. Daniel kenne ich seit zig Jahren, leider noch nicht bei ihm in USA gewesen. Miller kennt uns beide ! Ein längere Geschichte, letztendlich zum schmunzeln.

        Bei mir bedankte Sie sich öfters, Hammer Texte. Hier einer davon. Miller 2008: „Sehr geehrter Herr Krapf Sie haben recht, es wird sich nichts ändern, wenn die Fachleute, die Hirnforscher, Vorträge vor ihren Kollegen halten, aber die breite Öffentlichkeit nichts darüber erfährt, wie die Kinder unter dem hochgeachteten Vorwand der Erziehung in den ersten vier Jahren zu Monstern oder / und Schwachköpfen zugerichtet werden. Es ist gut, das Sie sich darum kümmern wollen. Ich kopiere Ihnen einen Artikel den ich neulich in diesem Zusammenhang geschrieben habe…“

        In dem Artikel macht sie Shonkoff (Harvard) nieder. Zwischen Ihren 13 Büchern und ihrem Privatleben (mit ihrem Sohn), liegen Welten. Deswegen heisst der Artikel: Sie hat ihre Fehler nie eingesehen. Leider kann ich nicht perfekt englisch, aber vielleicht kannst du dieses obige « grausige « Zitat von ihr übersetzen. Letztendlich gab ihr NeuroScience recht, denn der prefrontale Kortex hat normalerweise « Affekte » etc. im Griff, respektive das Kontrollzentrum, das auch für Decision Makings zuständig ist, weist seit frühester Kindheit ein neuronales Desaster auf: cell pruning.

        okidoki. Will Daniels Blog nicht ellenlang mit Deutsch vollmüllen 🙂

        liebe grüsse.

  146. First time I heard about you was when I watch croatian TV show and you were guest there. I was very interested in your work and view on mental health.

    What is your opinion about institutional education because you don’t think that (even) parents are capable for raising children without any form of abuse?

    I’m writing a book about educational system in Croatia. I work as a kindergarden teacher and I don’t like situation in which I am. I expect to get fired after publication and some of my colleagues have the same opinion.

    I watched several videos on your youtube channel, you are very radical, but I like it. It is a blasphemy in Croatia to tell someone that he or she is incapable to be a parent. Having children is like breathing – normal, almost compulsory. There is some kind of saying here about having children, I try to translate it to you. Almost exclusively, women are rationalizing motherhood. They say that women are giving birth to a child to themselves. It is normal to say ’She birthed a child to herself’. This is regarded as a success, especially if mother is in late thirties or in forties. Even single mother, even mental health patient, ex addict, no matter what.

    • Hello Bojan,
      greetings — and thank you for your message. i enjoyed reading it. my experience on the educational system — not good!!! i think it’s in general a terrible system. i see it as preparing people more work factory work and prison than for a creative adult life. i was very good in school but i hated it. i also tried for a few months to teach music for pre-kindergarteners. that was in 1999. i loved the kids but found so many of the rules of the school idiotic and also many of the parents were totally backward. and many of the teachers were good people but burned out — and they would never speak up. they were making good money and had accepted the misery of their situation. i never returned to that job, and became a therapist instead. at least i could work independently as a therapist! wishing you all the best on your journey. to speak the truth is not easy!! daniel

      • I am a primary school teacher in Italy, i understand so well these words!
        I think school is in a strategical position for help parents and sons, but fails daily because is an expression of the insane social system, the same that Bojan describes.
        Me, too, i’m fighting every day for trying to protect kids, at least at school, but i am lonely and don’t know how long i can resist. Helps reading that others are passing by that right now, Bojan, thank you.
        I don’t know much about you, but saying you are comfortable with the radicality of Daniel makes me think our stories are similar.
        Kind regards

  147. Hello Daniel,

    By way of “spreading the word,” do you (ever) do book endorsements? If so, how might I entice you to (even) consider endorsing mine?

    • hi Dan,
      well, no….i don’t do book endorsements, or never have. i get asked from time to time but it’s not really for me. but out of curiosity, what is your book about? all the best to you!! daniel

      • Sorry to hear that. As for what my book is about, “it’s” actually a series of five books. As they are full of new material, controversial, and are pre-publication, I’m reluctant to elaborate to any degree here. That said, the five go under the “constellation” title of,

        “The Unutterable Theft—the Histories, Horrors, Parenting, Politics, and Religion of Frankenstein.”

        1. Revolution
        2. Prisoners
        3. Escape
        4. Stealth, and
        5. The Suburbs of Utopia.

        —which in themselves tell something of the run of the series. Suffice it to say that in discussing concepts like the “War between the Generations”—between the “Pandemonizing Parent” and the “Pandemonized Child,” the series augments the work of Alice Miller. Roundly, “Theft” is, “about power—how it used, abused, and (where necessary) overcome.”

        The second book in the series (“2. Prisoners,”) focuses on the conflict between Zeus and Prometheus. One beta reader, on foot of a string of “OMG”‘s described it as “beyond eloquent.”

        Are you by any chance a member of If so and given that your question hints at a possible reconsideration, then and if your further interested I can PM you there and tell you more.


  148. Hello Daniel
    I am a fan of your films, music and your ideas. I am 45 years old and I am from Quito Ecuador in South america My father in an attempt to abuse me in his interests has followed me and persecuted with psychiatry in an exagerated way. He forces me to have Haldol depot injections which cause me terrible effects and harm not with the intention of helping me but to control my life and to to tke advantage of me and keep me drugged wit psych meds like a moron or an idiot . He has even forced me to have aproximately 25 ECT treaments. My father thinks he is the person that knows the most about mental health in the world. He wants to use exagerated diagnostics and tells exagerated stories and lies to the doctors. We had a coaching session with Chaya Grossberg and he never wnted to talk to her again and said she was crazy. He immediately says any body that doesn´t believe in psych drugs is crazy I ´ve made him watch your films and he gets very angry. He is a firm believer of psychiatry and and psychaitric drugs. I wanted to know if you know of doctors that treat with psychotherapy and not psych drugs here in Quito,Ecuador like in your films. I also wanted to know if you know of any antipsychiatric a or human rigths groups here in Quito, Ecuador to contact if they could help me. Do you have an idea what I cuuld do against my fathers iron grip over my rights and my life even though I am an adult.
    Congratulations on your compasionate , progressive and efffective opinions and concepts of mental health.
    Thank you for your help
    Hernan Quito Ecuador

    • hola Hernan. greetings from new york! Yo tengo un contacto en Quito. El es un hombre que estudiando psicoterapia hace unos años y el ha comprado unos de mis peliculas… es posible que el puede hablar con tigo y tambien posiblemente ayudarte.

      i will send you his email backchannel. all the best,

  149. Dear Daniel, landed on the ward, with the full package of your song of pills … Haldol, Amisulprid, Akineton…..
    BUT I’m still on the way! Believe me.Watch on, think of me!

  150. Hey Daniel,

    I’ve recent been watching your documentaries and listening to your thoughts and ideas on psychosis, and it has given me some hope on my struggle that I hadn’t have before. I was wondering if you could give me some advice, I recently talked to Mr. Bob Whitaker, and I feel you could perhaps know a bit more about this. My mild psychosis was brought about after a panic attack on marijuana. I had done some drugs prior, (LDS, shrooms) a few times, and had been smoking marijuana for a whole before this. I quit and for 2 months I had terrible ocd thoughts of harming others, sexual stuff, etc, and then I began having very paranoid thoughts about my family and just more and more delusions differing in theme, its been 20 months since all this started, and somehow, I have always been able to retain my insight about all this. It’s very scary not knowing what is exactly wrong with me, who to go to, or even if I’ll recover. I have taken no drugs since then, and I was one a neuroleptic one day and things were exacerbated. I know it was drug induced, all of this, but I don’t know which way to go about it. Is there any way I could hear your thoughts on this? It might give me some idea into what I should do next.

    Thanks Daniel.


    • hi sergio,
      greetings. well — it’s hard for me to tell from a distance what’s going on, but sometimes i have seen with people that some really wild stuff (the stuff called “psychosis”) can come out when people take drugs. but it’s stuff that was in there — i think the drugs just lubricate its appearance. also, all that stuff is usually metaphors for other stuff — so it’s a question, if i’m on the right track here, to figure out what that stuff means and where it is coming from. i personally tend to focus in my own life on the childhood trauma stuff. sometimes a therapist can help — if they’re good — but also self-therapy might help too. and support from others who have gone through similar wild experiences can be very helpful. but that all depends on where you are located and if you are able to find others. some people are able to connect with others online — as there are a lot of people who go through similar things and have come through them fairly successfully or very successfully. i write a lot about self-therapy — not sure if it would be helpful to you, but you can feel free to check it out if you wish.

      you might also like this site, though perhaps you’ve already seen it:

      however, with stuff of the intensity you’re describing it can be overwhelming for some people to face it alone in self-therapy. it’s just a question of finding one or more good people for support. not always easy — but perhaps quite possible. wishing you the best on your journey! daniel

      • Thank you so much for your response Daniel. I majored i psychology from University here in the U.S in Austin, Texas, and I think that I studied it because I wanted to fix myself and all my problems in my family, I guess I have been failing quite miserably at that lately then. I have a question for you about what you said in regards to recovery and that its something that its already there. I watched your open dialogue documentary twice, and your healing childhood traumas video. I eel as if you believe that psychosis can be fully healed, but you also seemed to say that people ave come out through them quite successfully or very successfully. Do you mean to say that they fully recovered? I try really hard to uncover why this is happening to me but I feel like I don’t have huge traumas anymore, and at the same time I do. Its hard to explain. One thing that has been impossible for me has been to find people who have gone through what Ive been going through and have recovered. Drug induced, etc. I haven’t found anyone really. Some people say im not suffering from delusions and its obsessions, etc. Idk whta to think. I live in San Antonio, Texas and I’ll be moving to Colombia for 6 months quite soon. I truly and deeply appreciate your help.



        • hi sergio,
          i think there are tons of people everywhere who have gone through psychosis and come out the other side — but they just don’t talk about it so people don’t know. in my past i’ve had some pretty paranoid times on drugs (marijuana) and came out of it. but mine weren’t too intense and didn’t last long, thankfully. i’ve known others for whom the intense times lasted a lot longer. i think some people also pass through psychosis and come out the other side without really healing their traumas. others can heal them. sometimes i think healing the traumas can make the journey more intense. perhaps some people bury the traumas in some ways — and that makes it easier to heal. these are just my ideas — i think it can be really different for everyone. but healing traumas is hell, that i have seen. i don’t personally know anyone in san antonio who’s gone through it, but have you looked up john breeding? he’s a psychologist who talks about healing psychosis, i believe, and i think he’s somewhere in texas. all the best to you — y buen viaje a colombia. no he ido a sudamerica y quiero ir…. i guess you saw colombia mentioned in “open dialogue.” it also gets a mention in “take these broken wings” (another of my films, which i think you would really like) — better recovery rates there in colombia than in the united states 🙂 daniel

          • Daniel,

            I really want to know what you mean by “come out the other side” and “recovery”? For me, I mean fully healed, no paranoia,no crazy thoughts, no fighting for my sanity, just waking up and not being afraid of how the Day is gonna go anymore. Yeah I saw that, that’s what gave me hope. I’m going to find John breeding and ask him what he thinks. I’ve been dealing with a lot of traumas since all this started happening.. You think that’s why it might be taking so much longer for me to recover? I hope you go sometime, esta hermoso!

            • well, to be honest i’m not really even sure what i mean!! what you write sounds so much more clear and real. for me sometimes it’s just words to cover so many different experiences of so many people. i don’t know why i even use the word recovery. i don’t like it myself. yours words are more clear.

              anyway, i’m exhausted — bedtime. gracias 🙂

        • Hello Sergio:
          You are not alone. There are other people in the world going through something similar. I see from what you write that you want a solution, but from my own experience I learnt to live day by day, and make the best of it. Faith is very important in healing, so never lose hope. Things that have helped me are exercise, meditation, proper nutrition, vitamins, sunlight. If you want to read about other people’s experiences there are facebook groups you can join. I like The Icarus Group in particular. From what You wrote I understood you were not medicated and that it’s been only 20 months. I am no expert but there should be hope. The other thing is you mentioned the word “Recovery” many times. What do you mean by recovery? Going back to the old You before the psychosis? Being free of psychosis? Or being able to function and work in Society despite the psychosis? ……..i am from South América. Daniel, should really consider visiting South América!! Wish you the best. A.

          • Adriana,

            thanks for the support. By recovery I mean fully healed, not having these thoughts and needing,to discern fact from fiction In my head.ita so painful, especially thinking I’m losing my mind,more and more rather than heading towards the light of sanity. I wish I knew. Thanks for taking the time to write about this. I function relatively well in this world, its just that I feel sad and in despair a lot because of what goes on my head. It impedes ne from,moving forward and making decisions to live a fully realized life.

        • Hi Sergio,
          I’m currently living in San Antonio, Texas. What treatment options have you found here? I’m wondering if you’ve had any luck.
          All the best,

  151. Hey i was wondering if you want to team up to help fight against Spiritual People being forced into Psychewards ……..Thats Bullshit hahah let me know! I was forced atleast 5 times and I have had enough! Have a great day! Bless!

    Best Wishes,


  152. Looking back more then a year now, Daniel…it’s kind of odd and strange…your music helped me very much opening up to a deity (and later deities)………………while………….you are an atheist ! ….. or I am wrong here?

    • i don’t know. i don’t worry too much about labels. i guess you could say that i’m an atheist, though i don’t really use that term for myself. i have faith in a lot of things that are rather unusual, based on my experience.

      • Daniel, on your beautiful website, I want to share my honest and true love for you as a hero, a beacon of light, somebody who has a beautiful most splendid place in my heart and in my soul, who is a keyfigure of spreading love on this beautiful planet. And through you I want to say thank you very much to Peter Breggin. I’m not exagurating and asking for a rescue-call. Through theses words I want to express my honest and deep eternal love to you both…thank you very much.

  153. Dear Daniel,

    I just broke from My parents – or better: started to do so. Thursday. Three days ago.
    I had help from my Shiatsu therapist and friend – teaching me a Ritual, which now has to be repeated till the boundaries are Finally Cut.
    It Feels Like it will take time, But it Is working! Strongly. And I am ready to go. Finally after Years of Schizophrenia diagnosis and escapimg into Madness…..

    Just thought it would be good to let you know – I’m on the way!!!! Watch me!

    Thanks for being who you are – and sharing that gift

  154. Hello Daniel. I wonder what is your opinion/point of view about diet/veganism. What is your perspective on strict veganism, do you consider it ethical choice not to eat animals? Are childhood trauma and disconnection from your feelings contribution to being meat eater, or opposite, you project your inprisoned child onto animals and try to protect them from what you experienced.

    • hmm, well — i eat meat. i can’t say i feel it’s 100% ethical (cruelty to animals), but i’ve noticed that my body feels better when i eat some meat — though not too much. i used to hunt when i was a teenager (small game — rabbits, things like that) and i felt in a way that was more ethical, more honest, than just buying factory meat. but now i really don’t think i have the heart to shoot animals anymore. but maybe i’m a bit of a hypocrite by buying meat, hmm… daniel

      • It seems to me the same. Hunting is more honest. But what is happening in factory production is horrible. I eat meat from time to time too, but I struggle with it. Thanks for your response.

  155. Hi Daniel. I enjoyed your video on psychotherapy a lot and I share a lot of your views. Would you be able to recommend a good therapist in the Santa Monica/Los Angeles area or somebody who does online sessions? I would appreciate that.

    • hi carrie — off the top of my head i don’t know anyone in that area. but maybe i have some other ideas. i’ll send you a backchannel email.

      • Hello Daniel~
        I luckily fell upon your blog madinamerica- really appreciate your story. I am a therapist working towards my LCSW and relate on many levels- already. It frightens me how draining our work can be. It frightens me more that my body reacts to it as it has and I wonder just how much I can absorb. Your story inspires me to think bigger as far as how I may be able to do such rewarding work in a more flexible and creative way.


  156. hi Daniel! I am interested in the work in Finland, for my son. I couldn’t get their address, though. Would you kindly pass it on to me? It is quite urgent now… thanks very much, & congratulations for being at the front of this struggle! it is such a poignant need, and there are just so few people that we can ask for help! nice to count on you! I just would not be able to live in NY!

    • hi sonya,
      unfortunately, i don’t think they can do much, if anything, for you in finland. their program only accepts local people–from that part of finland. even if you have a lot of money you can’t take someone for treatment there. also, i read of your situation earlier on this blog and i didn’t have any easy answers. that’s probably why i didn’t post anything until now. so, one important question regarding your situation is about how much money you have. it’s a sad reality i see in the world. if you have more money you have more options. but regardless, lots of money or not, i think it is best to try to stay local if you can, find local support and local help. the question is, what is available in brazil near you……i am not sure. i might know some therapists there, though, who have ideas. all the best, daniel

      • dear Daniel
        schizofrenia, for me, relates to a main loss of faith, of trusting in ourselves & others & the world. And I have been strugglin’ all these years for keeping the flamme on. It may be part of the game. Brasil now is very chaotic, we’re undergoing a big crisis on politics, social attitude, water, rainforest, and so on. I have spent, I guess, all resources available. Mental care is downhole, and I am/ will still bel struglin for my son… if he does not recover completely, I am sure that he still can lead a simple but more meaningful life. It is not easy. I need to find help. If you do know any therapists down here who can do it, please let me know. I can work and pay for his treatment, as I always did. So, please give me your hand, if you can. Have you ever heard of Dr. Nise da Silveira?(Jung) Dr. Eliezer Mendes (Psychotranse). Bispo do Rosario? They’re very special people, from Brasil, they dedicated their lives to deal with this stygma… and did a good job. I guess I will be giving my contribution, as simple as it may be, before I die. That’s all I can do, and, as you know well, it’s a hard job. Give me a hand, and I will do the best from it, I promise you. Thanks a lot, all the best

        • hi sonya
          i have not heard of those doctors in brasil. what is their opinion on what will help your son? and what does your son want?

          • Hey Daniel.

            You know what would say Alice Miller to the following text: Spiritual practices such as meditation, prayer, yoga, as well as finding meaning and purpose in life are considered vital to optimal wellness, etc.

            I always say. If it works, everything is OK:-) But overall: The best therapy is a safe bond.

            • Dear Daniel,

              I watched all of your documentations, and watched all the youtube-videos from Sean Blackwell.
              In my very humble opinion they are the best about psychosis, that I’ve watched so far. I’m only missing a documentation made by you about the actual work, that Sean and friends do with their clients. Such a documentation would be a great addendum to your Open Dialogue/Soteria/Healing Homes-Series … 🙂
              Best regards! And thanks a lot for your work

  157. I really enjoyed your video about schizofrenia/depression featuring the Icelandic woman and man. I would like to help a friend of mine and I’m wondering if you have any info about healing bipolar disease without medication? Thank you very much!

    • hi marisa — you’re welcome. hmm, healing bipolar. well, most of my films are technically about that thing called schizophrenia, but really i think a lot of things that help in distress apply to lots of people, regardless of diagnosis. my other films are here if you want: my film “coming off psych drugs” has a couple or more people with a history of the bipolar diagnosis. meanwhile, some of these essays might be useful to you: also, check out the website — might be good stuff there. all the best, daniel

  158. Hanna Lundblad-Edling is not on Facebook. I have sent a message to Karina, already. Thanks, I am chasing The Caring Home in Finland, now, & want to know if there’s more of them, & where they are… thanks, anyway

  159. Hi Daniel,

    I have read your books and watched your videos and i am well aware of the wounds parents can inflict on their children and that got me doubting and questioning whether my parents really loved me. but what if some accident happened and my body gets paralysed, in such a situtation i cant even imagine then anyone in this world would look after me and take care of me other than my parents. does that mean that my parents really love me? is this an unconditional love?

    • hi ravi — good questions. hmm, i want to try to answer as best i can. i think parents can love their children but often some part of the love is sick. sometimes part of it is not sick. for instance, i think my parents loved me in some ways and really did not love me, or love me properly, in others. they were wounded people and they acted out their wounds on me. and they also shared some gifts with me. as for whether or not your parents “really love you”, i do not know, because i do not know your situation. sometimes i am not even sure how much my parents love or loved me. and was their love to me unconditional? my experience, unfortunately, showed me in many ways over many years that it was not. all the best, daniel

  160. sono in Italia, in Basilicata.Due figli psicotici che vorrei smettessero i farmaci fossero seguiti dallo staff di dialogo aperto. Posso farli curare in Finlandia con spese a carico del sistema sanitario italiano? grazie

  161. Hi Daniel:

    Your youtube video in which you critiqued the modern practice of psychotherapy helped me so much. I am about to complete doctoral studies in spirituality and psychotherapy and I do love counseling as a profession, though I haven’t formally practiced yet. I’m at a cross-roads, not sure where to find my fit in the field. I perceive that with all my training, I may find my destiny doing something completely different but always having the heart of a Counselor – being able to invest myself in that which exalts life – at an individual and system level – because that is what I think our work is about.

    I was so inspired by your magnanimous sharing and your humble, creative, masterful approach. Wishing you God’s choicest blessings as you continue on your journey, in your work and in all that you do.


  162. Dear Daniel,

    I’m not sure if you remember me – Renata from Split, Croatia. I hope you’re doing well.

    Please , if possible, give us your permission to put all of your work (films etc.) translated to Croatian on you tube. I urge you to realize that Croatia is a backward Balkan country deeply corrupted and it’s vital for us – activists – to make pressure using every possibility we have to promote mental health in our really backwards country where people are treated in our mental institutions worse than animals. This is very serious and please think and help us any way you can.

    I have one very important question for you, as I’m in the midst of Ludruga falling apart – 6 persons left and there are some serious accusations about Ksenija Kapelj coming to me from translator Ema Dražić. The reason I have serious doubts about Ksenija – the sole and only reason is the fact that she lied to me that she was an architect after I hosted her in my home. Ema Dražić, translator, informed me that Ksenija presented your coming to Croatian TV as her idea and not mine. I was the one who made the initial contact with Krešimir Mišak. Did Ksenija tell you that she was an architect ? She told me she lied to me about her qualifications – and now I’m very confused. That’s the sole and only reason why I’m asking you if Ksenija presented to you your appearance on TV as her idea. The fact that 6 persons left Ludruga is quite an ugly situation, a step back and a serious blow.

    I’m also on couchsurfing and as I told you, you are always welcome to come to my home as a very dear friend, as your work was a revolution for me. Also, please feel free to tell any of your friends and contacts that they can contact me if they come to Split and whenever possible I’ll do my best to let them use my guest room.

    Thanks again and greetings from Split.


  163. Hi Daniel

    Thank you for sharing your work – I got to see your documentary on Open Dialogue last year in Melbourne and it was very inspiring.

    I’m an Australian mental health worker in a community run organisation (MI Fellowship Victoria). We have a big focus on peer support, peer-to-peer education, family support and anti stigma work in the community. In March this year a colleague and I will be attending the International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis in New York, are hoping to visit and learn from some East Coast colleagues. I wondered if you might be attending the conference and would like to catch up for a chat – or if you might have any recommendations for places or people we could visit that are doing:

    – partnership work between consumers and clinicians, especially in creating alternatives to hospital or crisis services
    – good peer support initiatives that are making a difference
    – anti stigma or Mad Pride work that is helping build connection and belonging in communities
    – whole of family work to support recovery in the long term

    I understand that you are very busy, and I hope this request isn’t an inconvenience – feel free to ignore if so!

  164. Hello Daniel,
    How are you doing! I am learning about your ideas and also read your book “BFTP”. This is sort of personal question for advice but if you know something about it please respond.
    I live in Finland I have been in talk therapy for about 10 sessions but that did not work so i have been to psychiatrist now. I just visited psychiatrist yesterday who prescribed me a drug named “VENLAFAXIN”. He said this drug works best if you combine it with with discussion therapy, exercises, etc. and he said don’t be afraid by internet horror stories and trust me and use exactly how i tell you (very low doses to high steadily) this is be very helpful for your depression (which i got 24 in Beck’s depression inventory questions).
    What do you think about this? Can you suggest me something, i would be very grateful.


  165. I’ve just seen the new film by the mexican Alejandro Iñarritu, Birdman, and I think that the ideas behind the movie are very similar to Alice Miller books and the content of this website and the ideas of Daniel. I am pretty sure about the director has read something related with. For me it is a very good film and I want to recomend it. This is the link about the film in wikipedia:

  166. Hello Daniel, I’ve been watching your vídeos and reading your articles on this website. Great job you are doing!! I find all the information very useful and inspiring. You are a great communicator when you speak and when you write. Your message is reaching other countries (I am from Latín America). It must be great to work in something meaninful and help others. Hasta luego.

  167. Hi Daniel. I would like to say thank you for all your work as well as all the work you’ve done on and within yourself to be able to produce your work! You’re a true and rare inspiration. I’ve watched most of your YouTube clips and just recently read Breaking Free from your parents – which I’ve done – physically and I’m still seperating And integrating the psyche part of it. I feel safer and more solid, more myself each day. It’s also increasing my self compassion as I look back with new eyes on the gravity of what I’ve survived.

    When I watch your YouTube clips I feel grateful to be taking in information from a radical, free thinker who has deprogrammed himself from the dominant paradigm to a degree that you just flow with insight, wit and stuff that I find really interesting. So thanks. Love having a few chuckles even when listening to such multifaceted deep topics.

    I’m not sure what your situation is but I feel you’d be an amazing and wonderful father if you ever met the right woman and had the desire. I recently was diagnosed with complex PTSD. I have a daughter and a partner. I’ve been through hell. If I had of known before I gave birth I wouldn’t have had a baby but I didn’t undertand despite 15 years of healing and 200 hours of therapy. My psyche was split at age 5 years. Now we have a family and we know the value of true love. Our daughter is a delight and I believe we are to her and each other too. We have a good vibe in our home. Something I never had.

    Thanks again for everything – for being you!

    • hi jane
      good to hear from you. hmm…..yes, i probably would be a better-than-average father — and i’ve been told that a lot over the years (especially because i get on well with kids, too). but…’s just not my calling…… too many other things i want in life, and i just feel the world is better if a lot of us don’t have kids and instead focus on growing from within (but i guess you know my point of view by now!!!). meanwhile, thanks for the comment – wishing you the best — daniel

      • Hello,
        I`m from Croatia and today I have watched you on a local TV. I liked verry much some of the things you said. Some, not all…well probably about 98% ;)….so u have a new fan! Yea! But I just had to respond to this post. I really do think that you should have children and then try to analise parenting. You probably would be a good father….but…you can`t know untill u have a child and that child is grown and then starts sharing all the trauma you put him or her thru….yes…no matter how hard you try tere is always something! Life always get`s to us. Life is not a book. Now I’m talking about things I saw and experienced whit my family and friends. My son is 11 years old and hasn`t start sharing his trauma whit me yet…I always hope that one day he`l say my parenting was great …I can dream untill he hits puberty;) You said that a good parent has to take care of himself to be able to take care of a child and I agree 100%. That`s it. A stable person is the best support for a child…for everyone axually. But we don`t take care of urselfs, we are not used to. I dream of a world where everyone looks inside themselfs to find answers to problems and not at others. People always concentrates on the outside world to find exuses, to find someone and something that is responsable of all the trouble. But we all have to find answers in our selfs. Ohhh I could write for days…but that`s your job.
        I`m a nurse,I like to observe people, think about why they do the things they do, so it was verry interesting to listen to your conclusions. Your`e energy is contageus!
        And I do wish you a child of your own;) There is no greater love.
        Sorry for my spelling.
        I wish you all the best.

    • intense! i had no idea about this. i actually don’t follow stefan’s work much. i wonder what happened. certainly he angered some parents in the past by suggesting that kids break from their parents. i’m not sure how much he pushed people to break from parents. i think pushing is not a good idea — people need to do whatever they’re going to do in their own good time. as for his listening in on his wife’s therapy sessions and commenting through the air vents, if that did happen as he supposedly claimed it’s pretty weird — for both him and his wife — and certainly not something to boast about, rather, to be ashamed about. i wonder what will come of all this.

      thanks for sharing it, mike,

      • Hi Daniel

        I think Stefan Molyneux is a truthful and decent person. I actually first discovered you through Stefan’s channel and I’m so glad I did. I’ve been following your work with enthusiasm and immense gratitude for a relatively short but very meaningful period of time.

        Regarding the scenario above, I believe Stefan was trying to be ironic and humorous when he said those things. I know that Stefan is a huge advocate of therapy as a result of his own positive experiences so I really doubt he’d behave in such a disrespectful way. It certainly does come across as being offensive and I believe ultimately did get both him and his wife into quite a lot of trouble. However, the 1min 20sec snippet was taken out of the original context and probably deliberately presented in a sinister light. Sadly, it would appear that some people who have nasty things to say about Stefan also have nasty things about you too Daniel. Have a look at this twisted article

        There’s usually no shortage of people trying to tear down the truth tellers and I really feel that you and Stefan are somewhat kindred spirits on a very similar mission and it would be awesome to see the two of you collaborating and sharing ideas together again in the future! 🙂


        • thanks caroline — ha, yes, i did read that nasty thing about me. someone sent it sometime back. people can be silly and mean. and i have heard from some others that he was just joking about that thing about listening and commenting through the air vents. certainly there are some out there who don’t like him and search for ways to destroy him, whether they take what he says in context (which is ethical) or not (which isn’t). however, i still have mixed feelings about him. one thing, though, that i do respect him for, is that he has helped a lot of people. i know several people who don’t follow him any more and criticize his limits but still say he was vitally important to them on their journey to grow and know themselves better. so for that, regardless of all else, good for him! thanks for your comment, and greetings 🙂 daniel

          • Thanks for your reply Daniel. Just out of curiosity, is there anything in particular you could pin point that gives you those mixed feelings about Stefan?

            I’ve noticed that he does tend to talk about his growth process mainly in terms of the past tense these days and he rarely reveals any hint of what could be perceived as vulnerability or weakness. I personally enjoy the more gradual and continuous growth process that you model with an emphasis on the journey (healing) not just the destination (being fully healed).

            I think Stefan has helped a lot of people too and he continues reach out to new people and expose them to new concepts that may be life-changing to them so for that, I agree, he’s doing a fantastic job! 🙂