Author Topic: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run  (Read 55320 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline psy

  • Administrator
  • Newbie
  • *****
  • Posts: 5602
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile
    • http://homepage.mac.com/psyborgue/
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #30 on: December 03, 2008, 01:42:06 AM »
Quote from: "SEKTO"
We'll save these for tomorrow night, OK?  It's pretty late and I am going to go to sleep soon.  Until next time,

B

Sure thing.  gnight.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
Benchmark Young Adult School - bad place [archive.org link]
Sue Scheff Truth - Blog on Sue Scheff
"Our services are free; we do not make a profit. Parents of troubled teens ourselves, PURE strives to create a safe haven of truth and reality." - Sue Scheff - August 13th, 2007 (fukkin surreal)

Offline psy

  • Administrator
  • Newbie
  • *****
  • Posts: 5602
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile
    • http://homepage.mac.com/psyborgue/
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #31 on: December 03, 2008, 01:50:46 AM »
Quote from: "SEKTO"
But even then, there were certain guidelines, standards of behavior that we, the kids and counselors alike were obligated to abide by.  For instance, in the encounter groups, we had to keep both feet on the ground at all times and (as we were kids, minors most of us) were not permitted to use profanity during the group session.  Any kind of physical assault or fighting was never permitted.

Most programs weren't like Straight in that they recognized that physical violence was unnecessary to the thought reform process (actually counterproductive, at least Signer says so).  In the program I was in they had similar rules to which you described above (both feet on the ground, no physical violence).  That's actually closer to what Synanon was IIRC (they had the same rules... unless you were a lawyer who was going after them.)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
Benchmark Young Adult School - bad place [archive.org link]
Sue Scheff Truth - Blog on Sue Scheff
"Our services are free; we do not make a profit. Parents of troubled teens ourselves, PURE strives to create a safe haven of truth and reality." - Sue Scheff - August 13th, 2007 (fukkin surreal)

Offline Ursus

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8989
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #32 on: December 03, 2008, 02:00:03 AM »
Quote from: "psy"
Quote from: "SEKTO"
I mean, I can see some of these B-Mod and more confrontational techniques maybe perhaps being useful and even beneficial when applied to hard-core addicts
I would tend to disagree.  The results from most of these facilities are temporary.  Even if it worked, (which it doesn't, since the changes are reliant on a controlled milieu), it would still be a process without informed consent.  Who would fully and knowingly consent to brainwashing (not that such a thing is even possible, since Singer's first condition is that a person must remain unaware of how he is being changed)?
Quote
junkies and crack fiends coming off of the mean streets of NYC, but to apply those same techniques to suburban kids who are experimenting with grass at the local high school, even if it's an outpatient thing, is dangerous at best, and psychologically devastating, crippling at its worst.

Some comments inspired by the above, which in no way can address all of it...

First off, behavior modification, by definition of the word behavior, contains a complex array of targets. There are the physical aspects, what one actually does, but there are also psychological aspects: the intent, the motivation, etc. etc. etc.

Barring incidents of physical transgressions or abuse (which would certainly change the picture entirely), behavior modification which primarily addresses physical aspects generally does not have far-reaching consequences. Once the parameters for following the rules, the milieu, are removed, the subject generally reverts back to previous behavior. Or does not. That's basically up to the subject. His/her mindset or approach to life may or may not have changed or matured in the meantime.

Behavior modification which addresses psychological aspects, on the other hand, generally has longer-lasting consequences. This is why so many of these places so precisely target your soul.

What we tend to talk about here (on fornits), however, is not long term therapy with a trustworthy and competent practitioner, with informed consent and the pace being determined by the subject, with autonomy and confidentiality and individual freedom of choice respected and what not... What we generally talk about here is a system which utilizes shortcuts for reasons of expediency and cost effectiveness. And to do that in its extreme entails thought coercion.

Somewhere along the line, people figured out that getting people to be of the mind they wanted them to be was a lot quicker, and entailed less facilitators, if they capitalized on peer pressure. This is why ALL of these places, and I do mean every single friggin' one, use some form of group therapy or encounter group.

Thought coercion has a high price. For some, more than for others.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
-------------- • -------------- • --------------

Offline Ursus

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8989
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #33 on: December 03, 2008, 02:05:05 AM »
The kinds of shortcuts that are utilized by and inherent to a group format affect some folks more "benignly" than others. I believe this is why, even chalking some cases up to Stockholm Syndrome, you still have a certain percentage of "success stories," namely people who, despite it all, genuinely feel they have been "bettered" by the experience.

But not all people are well suited to a group format. For some, the mere visceral reality of being in a group is traumatic enough in and of itself. This, on TOP of what is actually verbalized...

Somehow, at least in my humble experience, it was usually these people who formed the bulk of focus, when it came time to assess everyone's moral inventory at Hyde. Were their survival skills merely ill-suited to this artificially created environment? Or is "introversion" a dirty word for group-thinkers, a species that "society" is attempting to eradicate?

To run afoul of being "in tune with the group" was a larger sin than it was to mess up, when it came to issues that the group was supposedly "helping you address."
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
-------------- • -------------- • --------------

Offline SEKTO

  • Moderator
  • Newbie
  • *****
  • Posts: 503
  • Karma: +1/-0
    • View Profile
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #34 on: December 03, 2008, 02:15:24 AM »
Quote from: "Ursus"
The kinds of shortcuts that are utilized by and inherent to a group format affect some folks more "benignly" than others. I believe this is why, even chalking some cases up to Stockholm Syndrome, you still have a certain percentage of "success stories," namely people who, despite it all, genuinely feel they have been "bettered" by the experience.

But not all people are well suited to a group format. For some, the mere visceral reality of being in a group is traumatic enough in and of itself. This, on TOP of what is actually verbalized...

Somehow, at least in my humble experience, it was usually these people who formed the bulk of focus, when it came time to assess everyone's moral inventory at Hyde. Were their survival skills merely ill-suited to this artificially created environment? Or is "introversion" a dirty word for group-thinkers, a species that "society" is attempting to eradicate?

To run afoul of being "in tune with the group" was a larger sin than it was to mess up when it came to issues that the group was supposedly "helping you address."

Holy cow.  You hit the nail right on the head, really pegged it right with that one.  I was about to go to bed, but once I saw the word "introversion" it just jumped out at me, so I feel compelled to jump back in for a minute here.  

Yes indeed, I am a strong introvert, INFP specifically.  I just finished reading "The Introvert Advantage" and will soon start on "Please Understand Me."

More later.  Really must get some sleep now.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Che Gookin

  • Global Moderator
  • Newbie
  • *****
  • Posts: 4241
  • Karma: +11/-3
    • View Profile
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #35 on: December 03, 2008, 02:45:30 AM »
this is one of those threads that is hard to stop reading. Great discussion so far, and while I have nothing really to add(my experiences are all b-mod) I'll be sending my brother(cedu veteran). Maybe he'll find it of interest.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline dishdutyfugitive

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 1105
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
    • http://www.foxmovies.com/fightclub/
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #36 on: December 03, 2008, 04:24:40 AM »
Quote
What, in your estimation, is the condition, solution and big picture?


who the @#$% knows - perhaps were not supposed to know.

Why should we save the whales and not the sand flea? Is one better than the other?

Is a heroin addict a lesser person than another?


Why do we need the government to tell us what we can consume and not consume?
Why is obesiety tolerated?
They let people out of jail on the account of the fact they can't fit their 439 lb ass through the cell doors.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline dishdutyfugitive

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 1105
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
    • http://www.foxmovies.com/fightclub/
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #37 on: December 03, 2008, 04:36:45 AM »
Quote
And then, I subsequently turned to one group after another in an effort to get well and stay well...I'd become convinced that I could not function as a healthy an autonomous human being, that the only way to survive was as part of some group. Basically, I got to a point to where I had lost pretty much all sense of personal identity and defined myself in terms of whatever group I was visiting or aligned with at the time. And I have been around a lot of them: JPUSA, the Twelve Tribes, a small group in Dallas you've probably never heard of, ISKCON...believe me, I have made the rounds of the fringe religious groups.

This is precisely why I'm digging Fight club so much. The movie nailed it on the fucking head.

 intro
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=md36o8aEtRk

marla
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ojnOZW9 ... re=related

more marla
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cpr46gM ... re=related
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline dishdutyfugitive

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 1105
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
    • http://www.foxmovies.com/fightclub/
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #38 on: December 03, 2008, 04:54:19 AM »
Quote
What we generally talk about here is a system which utilizes shortcuts for reasons of expediency and cost effectiveness. And to do that in its extreme entails thought coercion.

and best of all, these systems implement their quackery vis a vis underpaid, misinformed, undedumacated stooges. The majority of them are ass clowns that spend 1/3 of their day gazing into the mirror with deep admiration. Always rehearsing self help lines they learned earlier in the day from their senior gihbranist. Pining for the day where they can bust the perfect group therapy speech so as to win facilitator of the year award.

 Hot damn you move at lifespeed.....
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Ursus

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8989
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #39 on: December 03, 2008, 10:18:58 AM »
Quote from: "SEKTO"
Quote from: "Ursus"
The kinds of shortcuts that are utilized by and inherent to a group format affect some folks more "benignly" than others. I believe this is why, even chalking some cases up to Stockholm Syndrome, you still have a certain percentage of "success stories," namely people who, despite it all, genuinely feel they have been "bettered" by the experience.

But not all people are well suited to a group format. For some, the mere visceral reality of being in a group is traumatic enough in and of itself. This, on TOP of what is actually verbalized...

Somehow, at least in my humble experience, it was usually these people who formed the bulk of focus, when it came time to assess everyone's moral inventory at Hyde. Were their survival skills merely ill-suited to this artificially created environment? Or is "introversion" a dirty word for group-thinkers, a species that "society" is attempting to eradicate?

To run afoul of being "in tune with the group" was a larger sin than it was to mess up when it came to issues that the group was supposedly "helping you address."

Holy cow.  You hit the nail right on the head, really pegged it right with that one.  I was about to go to bed, but once I saw the word "introversion" it just jumped out at me, so I feel compelled to jump back in for a minute here.  

Yes indeed, I am a strong introvert, INFP specifically.  I just finished reading "The Introvert Advantage" and will soon start on "Please Understand Me."

More later.  Really must get some sleep now.

 :roflmao:  (Well, I'll be darned or a monkey's uncle, whichever comes first!)

Ahoy there, matey!! Me being a INFP/INTP myself (there being a bit of a toggle in that third axis, dependent upon the specifics of the assay, ha!), I can well relate to where you are coming from!

"Hot damn, you move at lifespeed....."   :clown:
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
-------------- • -------------- • --------------

Offline SEKTO

  • Moderator
  • Newbie
  • *****
  • Posts: 503
  • Karma: +1/-0
    • View Profile
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #40 on: December 03, 2008, 06:59:55 PM »
Ursus, I myself am INFP/INFJ, with my bit of toggle being on the fourth Axis.  More P than J-dominant though.

Here’s some more thoughts, from notes I took today while doing some studying and work in the area of boundaries, my sense of which DAYTOP philosophy completely erased, while resulted in my becoming utterly emotionally and psychologically crippled.  It has taken be fifteen years or so to even begin to see the extent of the damage DAYTOP did to me.  I took that stuff in, it became part of my self-explanatory style, and I personalized it, it became systemic in my thinking, and pervaded all areas of my life and relationships with others.  In the long run, DAYTOPianism proved poisonous to my life and sense of well-being.

I’ll get this out here first, and then next focus on specifically answering psy’s questions from last night.

Quote
staff: you are a fuckup, a drug addict, and you need to admit that to yourself to get better.
inmate: but i'm not. Just because I smoked pot does not mean I am addicted to it.
staff: you wouldn't be here if you didn't have a problem. Your best stinking thinking got you here.
inmate: but that doesn't make sense. There was no due process or diagnosis. how do you know I have a problem.
staff: because you're here. Nobody is here that doesn't have a problem (mystical manipulation). We know. We are addicts just like you.
inmate: you don't know me. I just met you.
staff: an addict knows an addict.
inmate: that doesn't make any sense.
staff: that's because you're thinking too much. Remember. Your best thinking got you here. You are sick in the head. You are just in denial. It's not just a river in ejypt.
inmate: No i'm not in denial. you people are crazy!
staff: Your denial is just further evidence you are in denial.

I remember having exchanges just exactly like this one in there.  Just like it, almost word-for-word.  A phrase I heard, and began to use over and over once I began to “Act as if” was the old Bill-ism “it doesn’t work unless you work it.” Also I was repeatedly told to try not to think too much about what was going on in my mind and in the DAYTOP environment and just to “focus on working your program, one day at a time.”  I was told often that I had a tendency to “think too much” (what kind of a program is it that discourages people from thinking?  That’s supposed to be helpful?!) and that I was phony, a showoff, and full of myself.  

In DAYTOPian thinking, you are never who you think that you are, you are always who the group and the program tells you that you are.  To conform to the groups’ and the program’s expectations of one’s behavior is considered “progress”, “making a breakthrough” and to not conform to the group/program norms is called “phoniness” or “being plastic.”  Counselors would always be telling me how “phony” I was being and one of their favorite DAYTOPisms was always to mockingly shout at me, “Oooh, I can smell the plastic burning!  It’s coming out of your ears, the smoke from all your melting plastic!”  All I was doing, in my mind, was questioning the validity of what they were doing and what was going on, and again, they’d tell me not to think so damn much and just “take it one day at a time.”

So I started to “act as if” and eventually came to believe what they were telling me.  I let them tell me who I was; individuality of opinion was not tolerated in that environment.  

DAYTOP was most certainly, looking back on it, a mind-control environment in which we were subjected to a process that molded us, reoriented us from a bearing of being urban high school kids experimenting with grass and mushrooms to a bearing in which we came to believe we were hopeless junkies with a genetic predisposition for addictive behavior and ultimately self-destruction. Of course DAYTOP subjected us to mind control/coercive persuasion/though reform techniques. Of course we were rewarded for conforming and punished for not conforming, as parts of the “DAYTOP family.”  Of course the whole idea was to minimize our individuality and personal autonomy and teach us to think as a part of the group.  Of course it was all about manipulating and exploiting the power of the situation, in order to make us think and behave in certain ways.  Of course they controlled our behavior, our communications with family and old friends, told us how to sit and how to speak and how to think and all that.  The “counslors” would "smoke" us in encounter group, or in the “haircut” sessions, like cheap cigars sometimes, and we’d “smoke” each other until some kids broke down in tears. Of course we become desensitized to the others' pain and suffering and get to the point where you only see a “dope fiend”, not a suffering person.  For me the “haircut” sessions were much more brutal and traumatizing than the encounter groups, since they were more personalized and took place in a smaller confined setting.  You are dealing with a junkie, never a healthy person in the DAYTOP state of mind. That one might be hard for people who were not in to understand. You are never truly “recovered” or totally “healthy.”  Of course it was a dehumanizing and degrading and de-individualizing process for all of us. A lot of people abused their power in the DAYTOP outpatient facility where we were for sure and none seem to be held accountable at all.  But at the time we all redefined the abuse as “tough love” which was being applied to make us “better.”  After all, the Monsignor wouldn’t want to deliberately hurt us, would he?

I remember how “Marcia” would try and teach me the art of “how to win friends and influence people” by giving me such advice as “try not to use big words when speaking to people; you are annoying and a showoff when you do that.”  Then I later used what I had learned subconsciously against others
in my life, furthering the cycle of abuse.  You always tell people what you think they don't want to hear, and ty and get them to internalize it as "truth."  This eventually encouraged my abuse of alcohol and drugs.  

Most of the “counselors” there were not really completely sober, either.  I had one friend who was in the home of one of the Puerto Rican counselors for whatever reason on one occasion, and she told me that she saw the guy drinking beer with his friends out by the pool.  There was another guy, an ex-DAYTOPian who never did graduate, who swore up and down to me much later on that he and another DAYTOP kid smoked a joint with one of the counselors while on the DAYTOP property.  I do not know this for an absolute fact, but the kid swore up and down that they all got high together and then the counselor told them “Hey, no hard feelings but you know I’m going to have to UA you guys, right?”  I was told that they all laughed about it all together like it was all a big joke.  Funny how the kids had to take random UAs but the counselors did not.

Personally, at the time I adhered to the program 100% while in it and did not get high again until I’d been at out of the program for less than a year.   I started smoking grass again at the ’94 Rainbow Gathering in Wyoming.  Ahh, those were the days!

So the long and the short of the matter is, the “one size fits all” approach to this kind of “therapy” does not work, and most of us came out of DAYTOP much worse off in the long run than when we went in  the place.  I have recently told one of my old DAYTOP buddies about this board, emailed him the link to it, and I hope that he will join us soon.  He'll tell you.
Quote
How parents can send their kids into such environments never ceases to amaze me.

Psy, frankly, the fact that so many idiots turn out to be parents in the first place, just out of some sense of obligation, never ceases to amaze me, man.  You know, one has to have a license to get and carry a gun, drive a car, practice medicine, so many things that one has be trained, qualified, and licensed to do, but any old dumbass can pop out as many babies as they want without a license, and then outsource them to another bunch of dumbasses to try to train them in all the stuff that was the parents’ responsibility in the first place!  You know?  That blows my mind.  Any idiot can have a kid and then give them to somebody else to do the raising.  Easy for me to say, I guess; I have no children.  I just have a very hard time understanding how and why somebody would do that shit to another little human being.  It’s incredible and so sad IMO.

BTW: also, does anybody know anything much about the history, background character, personality, and etc. of the Monsignor?  There’s little about him out there on the web.  Is he some kind of narcissist/sociopath type, or misguided but good intentioned man, or what is his story?  Anybody know?
All for now.  I’m going to have another mug of yerba mate and will get more of this done later.

This is not easy for me to go through, and makes me sad to think about, but I consider this board part of my therapy.  

Thanks for your time and support.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline psy

  • Administrator
  • Newbie
  • *****
  • Posts: 5602
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile
    • http://homepage.mac.com/psyborgue/
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #41 on: December 03, 2008, 10:20:49 PM »
Quote from: "SEKTO"
Ursus, I myself am INFP/INFJ, with my bit of toggle being on the fourth Axis.  More P than J-dominant though.

Here’s some more thoughts, from notes I took today while doing some studying and work in the area of boundaries, my sense of which DAYTOP philosophy completely erased, while resulted in my becoming utterly emotionally and psychologically crippled.  It has taken be fifteen years or so to even begin to see the extent of the damage DAYTOP did to me.  I took that stuff in, it became part of my self-explanatory style, and I personalized it, it became systemic in my thinking, and pervaded all areas of my life and relationships with others.  In the long run, DAYTOPianism proved poisonous to my life and sense of well-being.

With me it was a case of a several things, specifically:

- I was too open with others to the point of sharing too much with people I knew little.
- I was too opinionated about others, confronting them in program style.  I would tell people that they didn't really know who they were inside.  I basically repeated the program on others on the outside.  It didn't turn out so well.  I had to learn the hard way to cut that out.

Quote
I was told often that I had a tendency to “think too much” (what kind of a program is it that discourages people from thinking?  That’s supposed to be helpful?!) and that I was phony, a showoff, and full of myself.

Some programs used the phrase "in your head" to describe a person who was thinking too much (as opposed to in your feelings).  The general theme was: don't think, just do what we do and you'll be fine... follow our orders blindly.

Quote
Of course we become desensitized to the others' pain and suffering and get to the point where you only see a “dope fiend”, not a suffering person.
...
But at the time we all redefined the abuse as “tough love” which was being applied to make us “better.”

Exactly.  What was once abusive was re-framed as "necessary"...  "Tough love" is an "ends justify the means" philosophy that rationalizes mistreatment as necessary for recovery.  The idea being that a person has to be "broken down" before they are "built up" again as a new person.  Problem being that it's not really possible to build a new person once you break somebody down.  You wind up with an unstable robot. It's thought reform, not therapy.

Quote
After all, the Monsignor wouldn’t want to deliberately hurt us, would he?

And maybe he didn't, deliberately.  A priest takes a vow of poverty, which means he's not likely in it for the money.  My bet for somebody like that would be a lack of education, good intentions, and an ample helping of cultic influence from those around him he sought for advice on "treatment".  The same is (or course) not true with many other school owners, but the moral busybodies can be just as oppressive as greedy tyrants.

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience."  C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis wrote a lot of good stuff, actually.

Quote
So the long and the short of the matter is, the “one size fits all” approach to this kind of “therapy” does not work, and most of us came out of DAYTOP much worse off in the long run than when we went in  the place.  I have recently told one of my old DAYTOP buddies about this board, emailed him the link to it, and I hope that he will join us soon.  He'll tell you.

Cool. I'm sure he'll find it interesting at the very least.

Quote
This is not easy for me to go through, and makes me sad to think about, but I consider this board part of my therapy.  

Thanks for your time and support.

You're welcome.  Thank you for bring such interesting discussion here.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
Benchmark Young Adult School - bad place [archive.org link]
Sue Scheff Truth - Blog on Sue Scheff
"Our services are free; we do not make a profit. Parents of troubled teens ourselves, PURE strives to create a safe haven of truth and reality." - Sue Scheff - August 13th, 2007 (fukkin surreal)

Offline SEKTO

  • Moderator
  • Newbie
  • *****
  • Posts: 503
  • Karma: +1/-0
    • View Profile
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #42 on: December 03, 2008, 10:57:27 PM »
Now that I have had that mate, it's time to address psy's questions.

Quote
It sounds like they incorporated a bunch of elements into that one philosophy (attack on the self, missionary work, group cohesiveness). I am guessing that by "helping" others you would be expected to harshly confront them in group? What did help entail? Would it be accurate to state that the group was seen as more important than the individual?

Did you ever have to write written reports on yourself or others (some programs call this a "dirt list" or "moral inventory")? How detailed did these reports get? Were people expected to rat on others for minor offenses? For doubting the program? Was there a sort of "thought crime" you could be accused of? Did objective criteria for advancement in the program really matter, or was it mostly based on the subjective evaluations of the staff into whether you had the "right" attitude (whether you were agreeing with the group philosophy and taking it to heart)?

Now please understand that this was about fifteen years ago and these are things I have not pulled to my conscious mind in a long time...this is stuff from I was 18/19, and I am 34 now.  Usually I try not to think about DAYTOP so much, not until lately.

Yes, the "help" we were expected to inflict on others entailed harsh confrontations, personal attacks, and basically put, DAYTOP's philosophy is essentially one that encourages psychological dominance over others and I too learned to pass that abuse on to others around me.  I myself am not one for much confrontation, and find it hard to be mean to people, to yell and scream and such.  But I learned how to be, learned how to pretend like I was a lot more angry than I really was so that it was not me who was the one getting reamed out.

In the DAYTOP groups, I'd always prefer to try and talk my way through some problem, use reason and deal with people in a compassionate and persuasive way.  
It's one thing to tell somebody "you hurt my feelings and this is how" or "you made me feel angry and this is why".  In DAYTOP you'd never say to somebody "You pissed me off" or "that makes me mad."  They'd have you identify your feelings and articulate them: we were taught that "Pissed off is not a feeling" or "dogs get mad, people get angry" etc. you see.  

So I was never one for a lot of yelling, and in DAYTOP-speak I was not properly identifying and expressing myself if I preferred a calmer and more rational approach.  No, we were supposed to YELL.  If I tried to talk it out with somebody, Marcia would scream at ME and tell me how phony and plastic and wimpy I was.  So I was encouraged to let 'er rip and really give people a piece of my mind "YOU'RE SO FULL OF SHIT, YOU LITTLE PUNK!!"  Generally we were not supposed to use profanity, but everybody did from time to time anyway.  They'd allow it as long as it wasn't too "excessive," however they were defining "excessive" at the time.  

So I was always encouraged to act a lot more offended or upset than I really was.  It got to where I was actually belligerent and happily confrontational too.

They (the counselors) tell you how they saw you, effectively telling you "who you really are" whether you really were that person or not.  They'd tell you what was wrong with you, what your issue was whether that was really your issue or not, or whether what they were saying had any validity at all.  They'd try to break you down and then put you back together again the DAYTOP way, tampering with the fundamental building blocks of your inborn personality, basically tell you that "you" weren't good enough (because it's your own junkie thinking that got you here, right?) and that they were going to build a "new and improved" you.  An attack on the self, yes.  "You are now part of a whole, something greater than yourself the messed-up individual, and you need the group to keep you well."  Dispensing of existence, doctrine over person, yes.  Mystical manipulation, it was all there.  I see it now, or I am starting to understand what was really going on there.

Was the group more important than the individual?  Yes and no.  It's all about situational context, and the power of the situation you see.  On the one hand, the whole point, the end result was personal growth.  One of thier little "values" I remember was "Personal growth before vested interest."  But in that situational context you needed the group to tell you how much "personal growth" you the individual had attained.  You'd have to prove yourself constantly to the staff and to your peers before you could make advancement in the DAYTOP chain of command.  

So here's a question: had one advanced up the chain because of one's personal growth, or had one's personal growth been increased through the shifting and growing sets of responsibilities put upon one through that very administrative advancement?

Did you ever have to write written reports on yourself or others (some programs call this a "dirt list" or "moral inventory")? How detailed did these reports get? Were people expected to rat on others for minor offenses? For doubting the program? Was there a sort of "thought crime" you could be accused of? Did objective criteria for advancement in the program really matter, or was it mostly based on the subjective evaluations of the staff into whether you had the "right" attitude (whether you were agreeing with the group philosophy and taking it to heart)?


1)  According to my recollection, coordinators and Department Heads did, yes.  (Coordinators and Department Heads being the two topmost levels of the DAYTOP chain.)  We'd keep log book of who committed what infractions and when.  We'd keep log books of who we gave a "haircut" or a "dealtwith" to, the time of day it was administered, the offense committed, and a short but somewhat detailed, concise report of it to be delivered to the counselor on duty, whoever it might have been on a particular day.  

But no, there were not any daily written reports that we all had to write out, or regularly-submitted moral inventories in a written form from what I remember.

2)  People were expected to rat each other out for minor offenses, yes.  Because, according to our indoctrination, if you know somebody is doing something wrong, breaking some rule or whatever, and you do not turn them in for it or at least persuade them to confess, then you were complicit to their bad behavior and might as well have been doing it yourself.  It became kind of a "feather in your cap" in terms of showing your "personal growth" if you turned somebody in for some small thing, say, if you catch them smoking behind the fence out back.  The more things that you could point out that you saw somebody doing wrong, the more you called them out on some improper attitude or inappropriate thinking, it showed that you had "matured" and must be gaining "personal growth."

People were expected to rat each other out for doubting the program, too, and again, the more you called somebody out on their "bad attitude" the more "feathers in your cap" you'd get and the more "personal growth" you had achieved.  Was there any kind of "thought crime" that one could be accused of?  Sure, in questioning the program at all, or questioning anything for that matter.  Any kind of non-conformity or not going along with the DAYTOP lines could land you in the coordinator's office for a quick "dealtwith" at any time.  No grumbling, no murmuring, no dissenting allowed.  Oh, you might be allowed to express an independent thought a time or two, but they'd set you straight pretty quick, or try to at least.  If you still didn't go along with it, did too much complaining or asked too many questions, you might have to spend time in "The Chair" after a series of "haircuts."  

Quote
Did objective criteria for advancement in the program really matter, or was it mostly based on the subjective evaluations of the staff into whether you had the "right" attitude (whether you were agreeing with the group philosophy and taking it to heart)?

I know of this one guy (a good friend of mine to this day, and he might post here a little bit someday soon) who was in the program for two and a half years before they let him graduate.  Why so long?  Nobody really knows.  The level of "readiness" to graduate was all subjectively judged by the staff and the director of the place.  Pretty much all subjectively judged, yep.

A big part of my story, and the others' too was in our relationship with our families.  They were so ignorant, so naive, and ate up everything DAYTOP told them.  It's like they were looking for some help to "fix" their son, when it was our dysfunctional family that was the problem.  The main lesson I learned
is that there are no "quick fixes."

I don't think that my friend will post much, if at all.  I talked with him tonight and he said that his memories of DAYTOP make him want to vomit.  But we'll see.

More later, after another yerba.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2008, 11:36:52 PM by SEKTO »

Offline SEKTO

  • Moderator
  • Newbie
  • *****
  • Posts: 503
  • Karma: +1/-0
    • View Profile
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #43 on: December 03, 2008, 11:28:05 PM »
Quote
Some programs used the phrase "in your head" to describe a person who was thinking too much (as opposed to in your feelings). The general theme was: don't think, just do what we do and you'll be fine... follow our orders blindly.

Boy, that takes me back man.  They'd always tell me that I was "stuck in my own head" and that the solution was to get "out of my head."  

Wat kind of shit is that to teach a kid?

Another charming DAYTOPianism (not a "DAYTOP value", but one phrase that got bandied about a lot in the group environment) one that I never really understood, was "When you think you're looking bad you're looking good, and when you think you're looking good you're looking bad."  What on earth does that mean??  I always wondered.  Talk about confusion and lots of self-doubt.  Talk about impaired decision-making.  "I think I look good but I really look bad/I think I look bad but I really look good."  WTF?   That phrase threw my emotional balance WAY off.  If you incorporate that into your thinking, who knows where it might lead you?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline dishdutyfugitive

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 1105
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
    • http://www.foxmovies.com/fightclub/
Re: DAYTOP Did Me Great Harm in the Long Run
« Reply #44 on: December 03, 2008, 11:37:58 PM »
Quote
get "out of my head."

Quote

= we don't see too many of you intellectual kids. Quit hurting our brains with slightly advanced vocabulary. Stop talking smart talk. Get in to your feelings. Start flinging snot everywhere and swearing about your coerced program feelings".

 

Wat kind of shit is that to teach a kid?

Quote
"When you think you're looking bad you're looking good, and when you think you're looking good you're looking bad." What on earth does that mean?? I always wondered. Talk about confusion and lots of self-doubt.

HOly FuCK!!!!! 2+2 = 5
aka you you can try as hard as you want but you'll never get it or progress. You'll always be a degenerate teen worth $66k a year.
"I can't wait to yell at you next week about more senseless shite"
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »