It’s disheartening and disgusting — We see a variety of articles about mental health and illness on the Internet and some are useful. Some are given to us by written by successful doctors, nurses, counselors, social workers, professional scientific writers, and other people we can trust. Not all of the writing is so great, though, and some can be dangerous —
Some articles on psychiatric and psychological diagnosis are harmful, because they are full of misinformation and their authors are untrained, uneducated in the field, and uncertified. Some even name the names of family members, friends, coworkers, people in the news, and others in their Internet articles and provide a diagnosis of “_____” condition(s) without the foundation from which to do so. That is wrong for many reasons –
1. It is grounds for libel, a crime. It can result in a defamation of character lawsuit; if it costs someone a job, then it can escalate into other charges. Just because a person shows one or a few symptoms of a mental health disorder, this does not mean that he/she has that disorder. When we are hungry, tired, or affected by other elements, we temporarily show some signs of mental health decline and this is natural. In addition, many mental health conditions overlap. Required training, internships, residencies, post-doc work, and years of experience are required to diagnose a patient.
2. It is unethical.
3. It is gossip.
4. It is practicing psychiatry (medicine) and psychology without a license, a crime.
It is also rude and self-important, but many people on realty shows are like that…