Information for media representatives

More than half of the members of our association, which has been working since 1989 to realize a Weglaufhaus for psychiatric patients in Berlin, have themselves been inmates of psychiatric institutions. These experiences shape the conception of our project and our daily work, which is carried out by both affected and non-affected persons with the same competence and attitude.

The public confession of one’s own psychiatric experience is not (anymore) difficult for many in our group. Nevertheless, we have agreed that each individual should leave open whether he or she has been in psychiatry or not when we present our association and the “Villa Stöckle” Weglaufhaus to the public.

In several years of experience with newspaper interviews, congresses and television discussions, it has turned out that the open reference to personal psychiatric history ultimately hinders an effective communication of our concerns and our project. For even with serious reporting and an open-minded audience, the interest in the person of the (former) mad person and their individual experiences usually crowds out a factual and productive discussion of our arguments and concepts. We consider the psychiatric concept of illness to be irrelevant and psychiatry as a whole not only superfluous but harmful. Therefore we are not interested in any arbitrary and accidental stigmatizations – so called psychiatric diagnoses – being renewed again and again by making public our own psychiatric affliction with reversed signs by ourselves.

We ask everyone who approaches us with corresponding inquiries to respect our attitude and thank you for the interest in our project.

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