What is natural spirit?

Psychiatric Force2020-08-26T17:26:12+00:00

Thank you for your interest in my work! I am currently researching and writing a book about people’s experiences of psychiatric legal powers, psychiatric detentions, and involuntary treatment. If you’ve ever experienced any of these, I’d love to hear from you. I’d also like to hear from people who are friends, family members, academics, researchers, advocates, or psychiatric, psychological, or legal professionals. Please read my FAQ below. I look forward to connecting with you! And if you’d like to stay abreast as the book develops, please subscribe on my News & Blog page.

~Rob Wipond

What kinds of people and stories are you primarily looking for?2020-08-26T17:40:05+00:00

I’m primarily interested in hearing from people who have personally experienced, one or more times, detention or involuntary treatment under mental health laws in the United States and Canada. But I’m also interested to hear from people who’ve simply felt influenced or threatened by psychiatric legal powers, or who work in fields where these powers are used.

Do you also want to talk with people who have not been forcibly treated?2020-09-07T17:22:31+00:00

Yes! I’d also like to talk with…

  • People who’ve felt influenced or affected by mental health legal powers in some way; for example, you were once interviewed by police doing a “Wellness Check,” or felt pressured at work to take treatments after a conflict-resolution process.
  • Friends, family members, and colleagues of people who’ve experienced involuntary treatment.
  • People who work in the field, such as lawyers, mental health practitioners, police officers, academics, researchers, advocates, and activists.
  • Teachers, social workers, employers, shelter managers, church leaders, and others who have had occasion to use mental health legal powers by requesting the intervention of police or mental health professionals.
  • Anyone else not listed if, for some other reason(s), you have strong feelings about psychiatric legal powers or involuntary psychiatric treatment.
What can I expect you’ll want to know about?2020-09-07T17:18:21+00:00

If you’ve experienced forced psychiatric intervention, these are some of the main questions I’ll be asking:

  • What exactly happened and when, and what were your feelings and thoughts going through it?
  • What was going on in your life and circumstances at the time that contributed to it happening?
  • Do you and the people close to you have similar or very different perspectives on what happened?
  • How has it affected you since?
  • Do you have copies of medical, police, or other written records that you would be willing to share, either confidentially with me or publicly for the book?
  • What is your opinion today on forced psychiatric interventions?

If you have not personally experienced forced psychiatric intervention, I will want to know what experiences, research, and knowledge have contributed to your opinions on the issue.

What’s the best way to connect?2020-08-26T17:45:23+00:00

The best way to reach me initially is to email or use my contact form. Tell me a little about yourself and your story or perspectives, and let me know the best ways and times to reach you by email, telephone, or online video chat. Don’t try to tell me everything at once — just a few paragraphs outlining your experiences with or connections to forced psychiatric intervention. I’ll follow up with you!

Can I just send you some recommended readings or suggestions for people to talk to?2020-09-07T17:24:33+00:00

I am always happy to get suggestions for further research, or good contacts for interviews. Please bear in mind, though, that I’ve been researching involuntary treatment off and on over twenty years, so if the person, book, or organization is already very well known, then I’m probably already aware of them, too. So I’m most interested in recent scientific articles or legal cases that I might not have come across, or local/regional media coverage, cases, or voices that have not reached the national stage.

Can I be anonymous?2020-08-07T20:33:39+00:00

Yes! If you would like to speak to me but anonymity is important for you, please let me know right away and we can discuss any possible risks and how best to manage them.

Can I talk to you now and decide later if I would be willing to be included in the book?2020-08-07T20:46:51+00:00

Absolutely. At some point, if I’m feeling that I would like to include some of your story or perspectives in the book, I will let you know and we can decide together how best to proceed.

After everything that’s happened to me, I’m wary. Can I rely on your confidentiality?2020-09-05T22:48:01+00:00

I am acutely aware that forced psychiatric treatment is a highly politicized topic. Discussing it publicly can ultimately present real threats, directly or indirectly, to lives, freedoms, reputations, and careers.

You can learn more about me and my writing by reading my “About” page, and browsing my articles and blog posts on this website. You can get a good sense of how I report on people’s experiences of involuntary treatment from previous articles like An Overabundance of Caution, The Case for Electroshocking Mia, or Escape from British Columbia.

You’ll also notice that I have researched and written on other highly sensitive issues such as police accountability, surveillance, and privacy. So you can be certain that if I promise you anonymity, I will stand by that.

Have you ever been involuntarily treated yourself?2020-08-26T17:51:55+00:00

No, I have (so far) never been detained in a psychiatric hospital nor treated against my will. People close to me have been, and that’s part of what spurred me to begin researching and writing about forced psychiatric interventions in the late 1990s. And both my personal and professional lives have been influenced by experiences of psychiatric power. In the book I will share some of my own experiences, and also examine the ways in which psychiatric legal powers are increasingly influencing the lives of virtually everyone in North America.

Who is publishing the book?2020-08-07T20:28:23+00:00

The publisher is BenBella Books in the United States.

What is your goal with the book?2020-09-07T17:29:06+00:00

Two of my main goals are to help the general public better understand the widening array of circumstances in which diverse people are being detained in psychiatric hospitals under mental health laws in North America, and what it’s like to go through the experience of being forcibly treated. I hope that the book will contribute to greater public awareness, discussion, and concern about these extraordinarily broad legal powers that we’ve given to mental health practitioners.

Do you have a short blurb about this I can share with others?2020-08-26T18:26:19+00:00

Please feel free to share the link to this FAQ page with other people you think might be interested! There are social sharing buttons at the bottom of this page. Or here’s a blurb you may freely copy and paste into emails or posts:

My name is Rob Wipond and I’m a freelance journalist writing a book about people’s experiences of psychiatric power and forced interventions. Have you ever been detained, put on an outpatient community treatment order, or forcibly treated under mental health laws? Or have you witnessed or been involved in forced treatment situations as a family member or friend, practitioner, lawyer, social worker, police officer, community organizer, landlord etc? Do you have a story to tell? I’d like to hear about your experiences and perspectives. My main focus is on experiences in the United States and Canada. Please visit my website for more information about this project and how best to contact me, and to learn more about me and my journalism. https://robwipond.com/

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