Sunday, December 7, 2008

The voices in your head...

All in the Mind Blog, ABC Radio

This weekend's show features a roundtable with 3 people pushing the boundaries on this front. Dr Rufus May, Dr Sandra Escher and Dr Dirk Corstens - all active in the international "hearing voices community" - were in Australia this week at the Recovery from Psychosis conference held in Perth. They argue that auditory hallucinations, like those experienced in schizophrenia, aren't a meaningless symptom. Instead, they advocate probing the content of those voices - the good, the bad and the frightening - and "dialoguing" with the voices to better manage them and understand their origins.

Their approach does polarize. Some fervently disagree with their therapeutic strategy arguing that it is irresponsible and even dangerous. Others with a personal experience of voices find it refreshing, and something of a relief to have the nuances of their inner world acknowledged. And, a large number of folk in mainstream medicine now also recognise the limitations of a purely medical model for working with matters of the mind. To ignore the contents of auditory hallucinations, is to ignore the full experience of the person presenting to them, and where does that get anyone?

Note: See the comments in response to blog - very interesting

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