Sat. Nov. 18, 2017
Here’s another reason why we find that so often facts don’t appear to matter:
Slowly, hopefully surely, diagnostic terms are being used to describe Trump.
Excerpt (emphasis added)
ඛඣFriday, Nov. 17, 2017
Shared if only for the illustration:
The salacious excerpt with a bit of treason thrown in:
My take: How does this personally effect Trump? There are a number of people who know exactly what Trump did: those in on the honey pot sting, Putin and Trump himself. As a therapist trying to figure out what, if anything, could lead Trump to have a complete breakdown of his psychological defenses, I put this in a high risk (for him) group. Trump already survived the Access Hollywood scandal that never was, and the credible accusations from women he groped. But could his defenses stand up to revelations that he engaged in the notorious golden showers? Perhaps not. It isn’t just that he engaged in a sexual activity most people find, at the least, a little bit “off” - that he might shrug off. It’s that he was lured into a classic honey trap.
What is Trump’s Achille’s heel. Is it something sexual? Is it being outed as having committed treason. My bet is on the former. HB
On Trump the malignant narcissist:
"Politicians lie, but this is different."
Regular readers may have noticed that I changed the heading of the website again. I previously called myself a Duty to Warn therapist. The title has gone through several iterations. Here’s why I changed it.
The lay reader could easily gather that because it was considered by the American Psychiatric Association to be unethical to diagnose a public figure, when some mental health professionals did so, this discredited their argument.
In fact, psychiatrists adhering to the Goldwater rule have the same data at their disposal as any other mental health professional and I would venture to say if pressed confidentially to do so, would probably come up with the same or similar diagnoses as those who have diagnosed him in public. I find it difficult to believe that Goldwater rule bound psychiatrists haven’t had private conversations with their colleagues about the probable diagnosis of Donald Trump.
One group believed that they had to adhere to the Goldwater rule and did not use diagnostic jargon to describe why Trump was mentally unfit. Instead they substituted synonyms that described the same behaviors in the DSM only in lay terms. However there are only so many words to describe Trump’s diagnostically significant behavior without getting close to suggesting he has a diagnosable mental illness.
- "I’ve been thinking from the very beginning that he exhibits many signs of mental impairment."
- "We have an obligation to speak about Donald Trump's mental health issues..."
- "There are certainly the symptoms that he displays."
- "In other words, bad as well as mad. It’s really the combination that makes it so toxic and unpredictable that we felt that there was a need to speak out."
- "I think by sounding the alarm about his mental instability and position of power that some kind of consensus as to a process would be developed.."
- "We could speak to the president’s mental impairment, the effects of that impairment and the dangerous situation we’re in."
- "We can either amplify and encourage Trump and his followers' pathology…"
"This situation has come to such a critical level. In fact, a state of emergency exists and we could no longer hold back. We have an obligation to speak about Donald Trump's mental health issues because many lives and our survival as a species may be at stake.”
This is from the prologue to “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump:"
“Collectively with our coauthors, we warn that anyone as mentally unstable as Mr. Trump simply should not be entrusted with the life-and-death powers of the presidency,” Judith Lewis Herman of Harvard Medical School and Bandy X. Lee of the Yale School of Medicine.I think we can agree with this, even if some therapists choose to delve rather explicitly into Trump’s diagnosis and some, for whatever reason, don’t.
Tarasoff v. Regents of the University of California, 17 Cal. 3d 425, 551 P.2d 334, 131 Cal. Rptr. 14 (Cal. 1976), was a case in which the Supreme Court of California held that mental health professionals have a duty to protect individuals who are being threatened with bodily harm by a patient. The original 1974 decision mandated warning the threatened individual, but a 1976 rehearing of the case by the California Supreme Court called for a "duty to protect" the intended victim. The professional may discharge the duty in several ways, including notifying police, warning the intended victim, and/or taking other reasonable steps to protect the threatened individual.
John Gartner was, as far as I know, the first to explain why he thought Trump met the diagnostic criteria for malignant narcissism.
John D. Gartner, a practicing psychotherapist who taught psychiatric residents at Johns Hopkins University Medical School, minces as few words as the president in his professional assessment of Trump.
"Donald Trump is dangerously mentally ill and temperamentally incapable of being president," says Gartner, author of "In Search of Bill Clinton: A Psychological Biography." Trump, Gartner says, has "malignant narcissism," which is different from narcissistic personality disorder and which is incurable.
Gartner acknowledges that he has not personally examined Trump, but says it's obvious from Trump's behavior that he meets the diagnostic criteria for the disorder, which include anti-social behavior, sadism, aggressiveness, paranoia and grandiosity. Trump's personality disorder (which includes hypomania) is also displayed through a lack of impulse control and empathy, and "a feeling that people ... don't recognize their greatness.
"We've seen enough public behavior by Donald Trump now that we can make this diagnosis indisputably," says Gartner. His comments run afoul of the so-called Goldwater Rule, the informal term for part of the ethics code of the American Psychiatric Association saying it is wrong to provide a professional opinion of a public figure without examining that person and gaining consent to discuss the evaluation. But Gartner says the Trump case warrants breaking that ethical code. U.S. News and World Report January , 2017
All one has to do is read “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump” critically to see the diversity of explanations as to why the authors think Trump is dangerous.
If I were to do a review of the book I’d take a different approach than most of those who have already reviewed it, although psychiatrist Andrew Spitnaz comes close to saying what I’d want to. His is the best review I’ve read and I suggest you read it in its entirety.
Excerpt: Part One (The Trump Phenomenon) focuses upon the symptoms and behaviors that render the president imminently dangerous. The various authors in this section argue that Trump exhibits impairments consistent with multiple diagnoses, including Narcissistic Personality Disorder, Antisocial Personality Disorder (or sociopathy), paranoia, hypomania, and possibly dementia.
The clinicians do an excellent job, assembling a greatest hits collection and several B-sides of Trump’s deranged statements and abhorrent behaviors to make their cases. Their assessments span the president’s entire lifetime, though with emphasis primarily upon his words and deeds while campaigning and now as president. Their summation is a horrifying trek down Memory Lane and utterly damning in its totality.
I’d try to analyze what there is about Trump that leads so many experienced mental health professionals to come up with so many different explanations for his behavior. Can they all be right?
Duty: a moral or legal obligation; a responsibility: it's my duty to uphold the law | she was determined to do her duty as a citizen | a strong sense of duty. • [as modifier] (of a visit or other undertaking) done from a sense of moral obligation rather than for pleasure: a fifteen-minute duty visit.Superficially it shouldn’t matter. However, unbeknownst to the general public, there are two groups with the same goals. One has a name, Duty to Warn, the other while making a major impact, doesn’t have a name.
I propose a name that all mental health professionals can agree with: perhaps we can call ourselves Moral Obligation to Warn or, for short, M.O.W. therapists. It doesn’t have the same ring to it at Duty to Warn and D.T.W., perhaps because it’s new. But perhaps with a new name all the professionals can come together under one umbrella the way 27 of them (counting Noam Chomsky and Gail Sheehy as honorary shrinks) did in the book “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump."