The DSM – Controversy Amongst the Top Psychologists.Posted: August 23, 2013
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or the DSM, is published by the American Psychiatric Association, and is the diagnostic bible of the psychiatric community.
Prior to 1980, the DSM classified homosexuality as a mental illness. But this classification ceased as of version 3 of the DSM, which was released that year. And that change to the DSM isnt the only one. Each time a new version of the DSM is released, it actually includes more mental disorders. Hearing of this ‘evolution’ in what constitutes a mental disorder, might raise questions in your mind, as it did in mine.
Non-psychologists sometimes make statements about homosexuality, which are opposite to what was stated in the early versions of the DSM. EG according to the on-screen translation in this youtube clip, the cleric pictured states that ‘homophobia’ is “… a mental illness in which you see gays as depraved and promiscuous. You have to be sick in the head for that.” The cleric seems unaware that studies have found that gays are more promiscuous than others (Ref. 1, Ref. 2, Ref. 3, Ref. 4, Ref. 5).
So when is something a mental illness? Are there fixed and obvious criteria? Is it a matter of opinion? These are interesting questions to which I dont have an answer. But it does seem that the situation is not as clear-cut as you might think. An article on Salon, as found here, states in part that –
“… in just two decades, pointing out the pseudoscience of the DSM has gone from being an “extremist slur of radical anti-psychiatrists” to a mainstream proposition from the former chairs of both the DSM-3 and DSM-4 taskforces …”
The pseudoscience of the DSM, huh?