Madness in Love (Bolmer v. Oliveira)

Nietzsche said that, "There is always some madness in love."  Unfortunately for Brett Bolmer, some psychologists took Nietzsche seriously.

In Bolmer v. Oliveira (CA2) (here) a man claimed that he had an affair with a mental-health worker.  After a cursory interview and zero investigation of Mr. Bolmer's claims, the doctors locked him up.  The loons running the nut house even had a name for Mr. Bolmer's condition - erotomania.  After diagnosing Bolmer with erotomania, the psychologists wondered why many of us do not take them seriously.  Actually, no, they locked the lovestruck soul up.

Bolmer's doctors/jailers, unfortunately, only took the survey course in Nietzsche.  Had they read on, they would have learned that while there is madness in love, "there is also always some reason in madness."  Bolmer had many good reasons for his madness:

the Greater Danbury Mental Health Authority .... provides out-patient services to patients in its care.  As part of the program, Bolmer was assigned a case manager, Lisa Kaminski.  Bolmer and Kaminski had known one another before ... the two began communicating frequently through text messages and phone calls.
According to Bolmer, he began a sexual relationship with Kaminski in February 2004. He claims that they would meet once or twice per week at Kaminski’s apartment. 
Just friends?  Maybe.  There are easy ways to investigate this mystery, yes?

Did the mental health experts ask obvious (to lawyers, anyway) questions like:
Does Ms. Kaminski had any identifying marks?  Tattoos?  Moles?  Scars?
What color underwear does she usually wear?  Thongs?  G-strings?  Granny panties? 
 What are her grooming habits?  Noble savage?  Fur bikini?  Landing strip?  Bald eagle?  Brazilian wax?
What does Ms. Kaminski's apartment look like?  Please describe the arrangement of her living room.  Where is her television located?  What color is her couch?  Curtains or blinds?
Please describe Ms. Kaminski's bedroom.  Give details.
Obvious stuff, right?  Yet the psychologists asked none of those obvious questions.  Instead, they said, "We don't believe you.  Since we don't believe you, you are mentally ill.  Erotomania.  Don't leave any stains on the rubber room."

There are many legal issues involved in Bolmer, and its worth a read.  (The "Wait a Second!" gang have a helpful post up.)  Bolmer is much more interesting to me as a critique of our mental-health system.  Here, the doctors and nurses did nothing to corroborate whether Bolmer was delusional.  This would have been easy.  Ask the guy some factual questions.  Make some falsifiable inquiries, such as "What color is Kaminski's couch?"  If the guy couldn't answer, then, yes, he's probably delusional.  But if he could have...

Instead, the doctors relied on their voo-doo.   Science demands that you investigate facts before making judgments.  To a logical - scientific - person, judgment always follows facts.  All too many psychologists lack a training in basic factual investigation.  They don't know how to discover the truth.

Psychologists are all too often no different from wizards and warlocks.  If they don't believe you, then you must be lying.  How can we know the shrinks are right?  To ask such questions of mystics is likely itself evidence of your own mental illness.  No doubt the Alchemist's Manual/DSM-V has an entry for "Pathologies associated with excessive inquisitiveness and demands for evidence."

Not just psychiatry - but much of modern medicine - is not science, but is instead morality.  If a guy in a lab coat feels doesn't like what you're telling him, then you're clearly nuts.  If their moral judgments were limited to mere condemnation, who cares?  The problem is that the guys in the white coats have the power to luck us up.

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