Friday, February 3, 2012

Try this therapy:putting similar eggs in one basket

This idea hit me yesterday, while returning from work. It is an unethical idea  but it is something I would love to try out for maybe 6 months or 2 years.....after taking a few precautions to make my experiment  safe/ethical.

I have often heard my colleagues both past and present, moan about how difficult it is to deal with clients with borderline personality disorders and antisocial personality disorders;  how these clients/patients break up the mental health teams; how manipulative and difficult these clients are ; how poor the prognosis is and so on.

A nasty but sensational idea, which struck me yesterday was this.
 Have a residence with only borderline personality clients (of approximately similar  IQ, education and  backgrounds). They have to live there for 6 months to 2 years. Each week, a few act as staff while the others are residents. And there is a rotation and everyone gets to be staff and everyone gets to be client for equal amounts of time. This should be  like the group homes that exist for mentally ill, developmentally delayed, etc in Ontario.

Visualizing, the BPDs interacting with each other in this hypothetical residence, is both amusing and alarming!
I wonder what the outcome of this experiment would be like? Would the least symptomatic get better but after a lot of bruising? Would the most severe borderline get better or get worse? Would there be gangs and a gang attacking another? This is a scary thought. (That is the reason, I wanted clients with same IQ, education and probably same level of severity of symptoms too).
I have never had the opportunity to witness two people with borderline personality  interact with each other. I would love to see it.  I have worked with three and boy oh boy! Just imagining the three spending an hour with each other is so scary and funny!

 I had said earlier  that this expt should be done with antisocial personalities too but I am  rethinking now.  I am not happy about this experiment with antisocials  for various reasons. Besides,  this ?experiment is already happening in the prisons to some extent. One can simply study prisons to understand how antisocials affect each other when they live together.
 But the one major  difference between my experiment and the prison would be that prisons have staff who are not  anti social  and the prison staff  are(I believe) a major factor, influencing the life and behaviours of the prisoners.

I definitely would not suggest this for any other diagnosis like schizophrenia, etc.

People with the same diagnosis do meet together such as in   group therapies ... but these groups meet for an hour or so , once in a week....they are not living together day in and day out, like in my idea.

Extending this idea, how would it be if  these people lived together, with no outsiders allowed into their enclave...
people with severe OCN
CEOs(of same level of power and wealth)
film stars
tantrum throwing VIPs
all the chief ministers of the states of  India!
The list goes on!

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