It irks me sometimes when I'm seen as an anti-psychiatrist, rather than a critical psychiatrist. After all, I make my living from being a psychiatrist. My critique of practice is merely intended to make it better. I'm not against psychiatry as such, just how it's put into effect sometimes.
I've been thinking why I'm viewed in this way. The critical psychiatry website that I set up years ago (before the Critical Psychiatry Network was formed) was originally called the anti-psychiatry website, but I changed the name because of the confusion it caused (see THES article). But I suppose there is a sense in which I am against what is happening in modern psychiatry. It's difficult to get the right balance about how oppositional to be.
And I've always encouraged critical psychiatry to be seen as a broad church ( eg. see previous post). There are people in the critical psychiatry movement who want to abolish psychiatry and think we do not need a Mental Health Act. But I'm not one of them.
The problem is the degree to which modern psychiatry is a faith believing that mental illness is a brain disease (see eg. previous post). If I'm not a believer then I guess there's a tendency to see me as an anti-psychiatrist. What needs to happen is for this situation to be made more transparent. Psychiatric practice should not be dependent on taking a step of faith.