As a follow-up to my essay regarding the revocation of driver’s licenses of multiples, I think it’s time for psychotherapists, psychiatrists, and research psychologists to step up to the plate and take action to ensure that the public remain safe from the potential actions of the unstable patients they create.
I for one, do not want to be driving 75 mph (legal where I live) and unknowingly be surrounded by multiples driving trucks, cars, and other vehicles. Nor do I want to go to a hospital and be treated by a nurse or doctor who claims to have other personalities. I also don’t want to worry about children being cared for by a teacher who may have a serious lapse in judgment that puts a child at risk.
Where are the psychotherapists and psychiatrists who make this diagnosis and then leave patients, families & the general public to deal with the aftermath? Don’t professional health care providers have an ethical responsibility to warn the public? Do we have to remain at risk, be injured, and eventually sue a psychotherapist for negligence or death before it becomes mandatory that multiples be treated properly – as any other mentally incapacitated person?
Society, for example, doesn’t allow severely mentally impaired individuals to operate heavy machinery, we don’t allow them to conduct surgery, and we don’t generally place them in a position of power & trust. An individual claiming to have multiple personalities is no different. Claiming to be co-conscious of other alters, being cooperative or having pacts with other personalities in order to function doesn’t cut it.
Multiples claim that taking such actions would force them back into the closet & do nothing to help them heal and recover from their severe abuse. Perhaps that is a good idea because it would put distance between patients and therapists who are doing more harm than good when they contribute to the general decompensation of their clients.
Let’s get these patients the help they need & protect the public in the meantime.
Why is “do no harm” a subjective concept that can be molded to fit the needs of a caretaker rather than the patient & public?
originally published 12/07/10
Therapists, Take Responsibility for Your Patients by Jeanette Bartha is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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