The nuclear family is the site of oppression, coercion and abuse for so many people, especially female people, worldwide, and yet “the family” is rarely discussed in political (or radical) terms. Last year around this time, I wrote about various familial abuses traditionally suffered by girls and women and suggested that oppression, coercion and abuse is the reason “the holidays” are such a stressful time for people, especially women. In my observation, the refusal of most people to address the horrors of what really happens in families just leads to confusion and avoidance — and massive cognitive dissonance — where people express dread, anxiety and other negative emotions around family-focused holidays, but only manage in reducing this common experience to a joke/meme and avoiding unpleasant sensations by drinking (or eating, or shopping, or fucking, or cleaning, or decorating, or otherwise medicating) heavily until it’s over.
That message was generally not taken well, where I gently (and tangentially, it was literally a parenthetical) suggested that a guaranteed way to stop familial oppression, coercion and abuse (of mostly females) was to stop creating so-called nuclear families at all. Antinatalism, basically. I know, right? Antinatalism wasn’t even the dominant theme of that post but I’m such a misogynistic, baby-hating bitch for letting my
mind lady-brain wander there, even parenthetically, how dare I (use the internet to talk about the female experience and female oppression). How very damn dare I.
Sticking with the holiday theme of oppression, coercion and abuse — because it’s fucking relevant — those things are known to cause so-called psychiatric symptoms in people, particularly women as they are its primary targets under a more or less global patriarchy. In large numbers, girls and women (female human beings) experience anxiety, depression, disassociation and other uncomfortable and debilitating states as a result of being oppressed, coerced and abused, and a lot of women are prescribed and take psychiatric drugs so that these uncomfortable states go away, or have less of an impact on our lives. And by “lives” I of course mean our ability to show up and be ab/used by our capitalistic, patriarchal overlords including (almost always male) partners, employers and other authority figures. Mother’s Little Helper and all that.
If these medications actually worked — that is, if they did what they say on the tin and relieved us of our agony — they still wouldn’t be beyond reproach. There are compelling political and indeed medical arguments against treating people with dangerous Big Pharma medications to ease uncomfortable states of being. For example, the debilitating and often permanent physical and mental “side effects” of prescription medications, otherwise known as iatrogenic illness and injury that are often just as bad or even worse than the original disease. As usual, Big Medicine offers suffering people the chance to trade one illness for another, and another, and another, and to pay through the nose for the privilege.
Many times it’s not even a proper trade because the drugs are unable to cure the original disease and the new, treatment-induced injuries and illnesses are just added on. (This is the case with Crohn’s disease for example which is known to be an incurable disease.) Either way, the misery is compounded. Well, it appears to be an open secret within the psychiatric community that psychiatric medications don’t do what they say on the tin. Women are taking anti-anxiety, anti-depressant, anti-psychotic and other psychotropic medications to treat the effects of political and interpersonal oppression — and are being asked to concurrently swallow the cultural fiction that their discomfort is not political and originates in their own biochemistry — and the medications don’t even work, because they can’t work, because there is nothing chemical to treat, get it?
As discussed below, it appears as if the theory that a chemical imbalance in the brain causes psychiatric symptoms has been thoroughly debunked, yet application of this flawed theory continues: people continue to be medicated for “mental” conditions that are not biochemical and therefore are not amenable to chemical therapies. These medications also cause frightening and severe negative outcomes long-term and psychiatrists know all of that but they keep prescribing them anyway.
Here are some clips that illustrate what seems to be the situation in which we find ourselves. Namely, that oppression, coercion and abuse are unavoidable in this system; families are the original and main exposure to those things for most women globally and familial exposure in particular cannot be avoided; oppression, coercion and abuse cause the symptoms we know as mental illness; and every medication in Big Medicine’s arsenal is known to not work to treat it and to even make patients’ physical and mental conditions worse over time. More videos and discussion below the fold.