NorthJersey.com, Home of the Pro-Pharma Censors

This is certainly not the first go-round with biased articles in favor of The MOTHERS Act from The Record, a newspaper in Robert Menendez’s home state of New Jersey (home to many of the world’s pharmaceutical companies).

Perhaps I’m biased but I don’t see anything wrong with the following comment which was not posted on NorthJersey’s website under the comments section for the article about Brooke Shields celebrating passage of The MOTHERS Act. I would like to open comments up here on this blog since NorthJersey.com is censoring us (God knows how many of us). So go ahead and comment here and I’ll attempt to post a link. This comment was made in response to Susan Stone’s statement that Carol Blocker is the main supporter of The MOTHERS Act and that they have “thousands” of signatures on a “petition” (the DBSA letter writing software) which has never been made public. Everyone who reads this blog knows the truth about the bill and how it was passed. It’s too bad that NorthJersey.com is censoring comments on The MOTHERS Act.

My unposted comment (I’ve tried about 5 times in the last 24 hours):

Did Carol Blocker donate between $13 and $16 million to the pHARMa front groups who pushed the bill, or God knows how much to DBSA to have them run the “petition?”

I am so glad I had my mom around to save me from the horrors of psychiatric drugs and I only wish that Melanie Stokes could have been spared the horror that befell her due to the idiotic mistreatment she was given by her doctors in the form of several different triple drug cocktails, cold turkey med switches, and repeated electroshock sessions which according to Melanie, were “killing her.”

We have 3,117 Facebook Coalition members and 13,453 public signatures (Name and State listed) on our actual live petition (and I would also like to thank them all).

It was posted in response to the following comment by Susan Stone:

Wednesday May 12, 2010, 12:08 AM – susan__3932 says:
I would like to thank the many national professional groups and thousands of women who signed the petition in support of the legislation which can be seen here: http://perinatalpro.com/listingofsupporters/nationalsupporters.html Please note the research and public awareness campaigns do not require additional funding and will be implemented by HHS and NIH. These life saving initiative – which are now law – will go a long way to informing assessment and treatment of perinatal mood disorders. Thank you all for supporting The Melanie Blocker Stokes MOTHERS Act. The bill’s lead supporter was none other than Carol Blocker, Melanie Blocker Stokes’ mother. Susan Dowd Stone, MSW, LCSW

Here is a running log of all the comments on their website so far.

  1. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 5:18 PM – AmyR.Philo says:
    This website is not allowing my comments. That’s ok, we can take our comments over to my blog.
  2. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 5:14 PM – Rebecca.R says:
    It is just so wonderful that this legislation has passed. I am grateful to all the advocates who made this possible. It’s tough to do battle against groups who use mother’s mental health to promote their agenda by instilling shame and doubt into already suffering moms. Thank you to Susan Dowd Stone for her fearless leadership in placing mom’s welfare above all else and ignoring those who would seek to implicate a dark motive to this life saving cause!
  3. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 4:10 PM – farallon says:
    This is just a make believe disease that gives some women an excuse for not taking care of their kids. You need to get off your butts and tend to your kids.
  4. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 2:24 PM – Kaerer says:
    I am appalled by the ignorance of some of the comments herein. It is evident that there are many people who have no idea how debilitating this disease can be. This bill’s passage comes from the blood sweat and tears of men and women who know firsthand what is lacking in the treatment of PPD. We should all be thankful for these advocates who have dedicated their lives and in many cases their own personal finances to help the victims of PPD. This bill is to promote AWARENESS, RESEARCH and EMOTIONAL SUPPORT for those who are suffering. It provides women and their families with different options, medication IS ONLY one of those options. The choice to medicate for any condition is still a choice and yes, the side effects must be taken into consideration but there again RESEARCH comes into play. IGNORANCE IS NOT BLISS! Please educate yourselves before making such disparaging comments regarding a bill that so many have worked so hard to pass. PPD victims have suffered long enough!
  5. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 12:41 PM – kkleiman says:
    It is truly rewarding to see how all of the preparation and hard work on behalf of postpartum women can now be put into practice. The effort to promote awareness is not an easy one. It necessitates a deep desire to support and treat women who suffer excruciating levels of distress along with good, accurate information. Without both, there is a great risk for tons of misinformation to get into the wrong hands. Thank you, Susan, for all you have done to facilitate this gratifying outcome.
  6. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 2:42 AM – BTKING says:
    It is estimated that 50% of all Suicides in the USA were those taking Antidepressant medications. My Cousin was one of such Cases. And now I had to have one of my family taken away all because people haven’t woken up to the deadly effects of these medications. Everyone who supports this bill needs to actually do their own research and get the actual scientific data regarding psychotropic medications. If you guys value the lives of your children, their children and the future generation as a whole, you WILL reconsider allowing this bill to threaten the lives of mothers and unborn babies thereof. This information is so hidden because Pharma has paid off media, Congressman, etc. with millions of dollars of drug profits just to keep it so. That is the ONLY reason it is not broadly known. So I implore everyone. Please stop this blatant violation of our basic…human …rights.
  7. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 2:19 AM – LindaKay says:
    Psychiatric drugs harm both mother and child. Babies are dying because their moms took antidepressants while pregnant. Many people get murderous and suicidal thoughts while on them, completely uncharacteristic of the way they were before they took the drugs. There is also a Yahoo forum with over 2300 people, both men and women, complaining of persistant sexual dysfunction after taking SSRIs. Many of them complain of what seems to be permanent genital anesthesia for years after discontinuing the drugs, and they don’t want to live. Antipsychotics and ECT cause major brain damage among other maladies. Melanie Stokes was given all these so-called “treatments” before she jumped out a 12 story window and to her death. Then they named the Mother’s Act after her.
  8. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 2:18 AM – LindaKay says:
    So many women exhaust themselves in trying to live up to the expectations of today’s society. If they are fortunate enough to be able to stay at home with their new babies, they may suddenly find themselves totally alone. If they work outside the home they may come home only to be kept up night after night when their children are sick, and they can become so sleep deprived that they become psychotic, even though otherwise they’d be perfectly normal. I think too much of postpartum depression is attributed to hormones. Much of it can be traced to loneliness, sleep deprivation, and poor nutrition, and I don’t think we need to spend 3 million dollars to find that out. What we DO need to do is encourage moms to take better care of themselves. They need to be with other moms as well as getting enough rest and necessary nutrients. We have to stop pushing them to be supermoms.
  9. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 12:37 AM – AmyR.Philo says:
    I believe I recall a petition you guys started that had about 28 signatures. We also have 4.6% of votes on a survey on my website in a survey for “The MOTHERS Act is life saving” compared to the other 95% opposed – the survey has been running for a while now… Oh and we have 54 groups opposed to the bill. None of them takes any money from pHARMa.
  10. Wednesday May 12, 2010, 12:08 AM – susan__3932 says:
    I would like to thank the many national professional groups and thousands of women who signed the petition in support of the legislation which can be seen here: http://perinatalpro.com/listingofsupporters/nationalsupporters.html Please note the research and public awareness campaigns do not require additional funding and will be implemented by HHS and NIH. These life saving initiative – which are now law – will go a long way to informing assessment and treatment of perinatal mood disorders. Thank you all for supporting The Melanie Blocker Stokes MOTHERS Act. The bill’s lead supporter was none other than Carol Blocker, Melanie Blocker Stokes’ mother. Susan Dowd Stone, MSW, LCSW
  11. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 11:39 PM – joelfrisco says:
    My wife was misdiagnosed with psychiatric conditions after our first child was born. Simple anxiousness from a formula related choking incident led to drug prescriptions and eventually psychiatric hospitalization due to those drugs. The hospital and doctors who led us through our first birth and post-partum experience educated us almost to the point of death. After the damage of that experience we chose a natural home birth for our second child with much happier results. We don’t need more education, we need the government and medical profession to back off and let Moms be guided by their family, faith and conscience, not pseudo-science and profit motivated businesses.
  12. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 10:43 PM – donnaferr says:
    And how exactly has psychiatry, The industry of Death, helped those who have suffered from depression? It has not. It has done nothing but drug people into apathy so they don’t care. Do not trust any group whose sole handling is to “drug it.”
  13. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 9:47 PM – AmyR.Philo says:
    Spend some time on the UNITE website & blog if you are interested in the full story. Or, you could just keep reading the nonsense from Susan Stone. There are thousands many babies dying from drug exposure and God knows how many mothers dying the same way Melanie Stokes died from drug-induced suicide. This bill does nothing to prevent or lessen that, it will only make it worse.
  14. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 9:47 PM – AmyR.Philo says:
    Susan’s favorite catch phrase is “the bill does not subsidize medication” – whatever that means, the result will be the same, which is more moms being drugged, and more babies being drugged. You would have to be a fool to think fewer mothers will wind up on medication as a direct result of the bill’s passage. Last point for this comment would be that the only reason The MOTHERS Act passed was because it was slipped into the health care bill. They tried the same thing in 2008 with the “Coburn” Omnibus and failed. Only by slipping it in to other legislation did the bill pass. It failed on its own lack of merits for about 8 years because the bill is not worthy of passage. And no matter how you look at it it would never have passed without back room deals and pharmaceutical funded lobbying.
  15. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 9:45 PM – AmyR.Philo says:
    Re: Susan Stone’s claims… Google Susan Stone MOTHERS Act Evelyn Pringle and find out all about her. As for a “minority” of people protesting, on the contrary, we have over 13,000 signatures against the bill and I have yet to see any public petition for the bill other than a listing of groups (many of whom are pharma front groups) who are in favor of it. The DBSA sponsored “petition” was a cap-wiz letter campaign for which all “petition signatures” were privately sent letters to Congress members. DBSA is a pharmaceutical funded front group. And Susan Stone’s favorite nonprofit PSI has many major members with pharmaceutical conflicts of interest.
  16. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 8:56 PM – farallon says:
    Postpartum depression is another of the new imaginary diseases psychiatrists make up. You had a baby, get over it and take care of the kid.
  17. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 4:02 PM – kps says:
    It is obvious that there is still much work to be done since ignorance is still rampant. This bill’s passage is the result of tireless efforts of advocates that have dedicated their professional and personal lives to the cause and the courage of women who relive the horror of this illness in order to educate and help others.This bill promotes awareness, research and support for those who are suffering. It avails women and their families with options, only one of which is medication. The decision to medicate for any condition is an individual choice for which side effects must be considered. Knowledge is power. It is time for all women to have ALL the resources to eradicate the “4 million years of evolutionary suffering” Karen P. Sackstein, CPA – PPD Survivor
  18. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 3:56 PM – susan__3932 says:
    Indeed the bill does NOT subsidize medication or encourage its usage. What it DOES do is promote more research, public awareness, education and services for pregnant and new mom’s struggling from these disorders. The minority who characterized the bill as a diabolical attempt to medicate America’s mothers, did not succeed in discouraging support with these misrepresentations, but instead stimulated the debate that further clarified the legislation’s true purpose and garnered more support from mothers, legislators and those from organizational and professional communities dedicated to helping them. You can read the bill here: http://perinatalpro.com/ppdlegislation/readthebills324.html Susan Dowd Stone, MSW, LCSW
  19. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 11:40 AM – AmyR.Philo says:
    You can’t trust people who tell you that antidepressants are safe or effective. The New Jersey Website Speak Up When You’re Down tells moms to use antidepressants for several months after all symptoms go away, and says it’s ok to use them while breastfeeding (it’s not). To learn the truth about The MOTHERS Act go here: https://uniteforlife.wordpress.com/ Read how much money was funneled to the supporters of The MOTHERS Act from Pharmaceutical companies in recent years – over $13 million was spent.
  20. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 11:38 AM – AmyR.Philo says:
    This article makes me so sad, for all of the moms who are going to be told to listen to people like Susan Stone who commented above, and her friends who love to tell women to go on medication to treat or prevent PPD. Read this Mother’s Day blog entry http://tinyurl.com/2v5x6co from Christiane Schultz about the pain she is going through her second Mother’s Day after losing her son Matthew two hours after he was born to Effexor exposure during pregnancy. She also got pregnant after Matthew died but before she could wean off of Effexor and lost that baby as well. In fact, all of the babies she has had with the antidepressant Effexor have had some kind of problem from the exposure, including PPHN with one baby which nobody even told her about.
  21. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 11:33 AM – csrv says:
    Everyone is trying to save tax dollars. 4 million years of evolution has gotten us this far without postpartum issues. We all have own own little neurosis’s to deal with. Stop this spending when we can’t afford it!
  22. Tuesday May 11, 2010, 9:15 AM – susan__3932 says:
    As a speaker at yesterday’s event, celebrating the historic passage of this legislation, I encourage all women to continue to now encourage funding of this bill! You may demonstrate your support by going to http://perinatalpro.com/ppdlegislation.html and signing the petition in support of its funding! Sincerely, Susan Dowd Stone, MSW, LCSW Chair, President’s Advisory Council, Postpartum Support International, National Board Member, Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition Author/Editor Perinatal and Postpartum Mood Disorders: Perspectives asnd Treatment Guide for the Healthcare Practitioner (Springer, 08).

And here is the article:

Brooke Shields hails passage of postpartum depression bill in Ridgewood visit
Monday, May 10, 2010
Last updated: Tuesday May 11, 2010, 6:21 AM

BY MARY JO LAYTON
The Record
STAFF WRITER

Actress Brooke Shields and former New Jersey First Lady Mary Jo Codey joined U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez in Ridgewood Monday to announce the passage of federal legislation to help women suffering from postpartum depression.

Shields, left, suffered debilitating postpartum depression  following the birth of her daughter Rowan Francis in 2003.

AMY NEWMAN/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Shields, left, suffered debilitating postpartum depression following the birth of her daughter Rowan Francis in 2003.

Menendez, D-NJ, is advocating for $3 million to launch the program which calls for more research to better understand what causes the disorder that affects up to 20 percent of all new mothers and up to 16,000 women in New Jersey each year.

The law encourages the Department of Health and Human Services to make grants available for agencies to provide outpatient, inpatient and home-based health services for women with or at risk for postpartum conditions.

“We need to be able to educate, increase support services and research why it happens so new moms can feel safe rather than scared and alone,” said Menendez, a key sponsor of the legislation.

The law, The Melanie Blocker Stokes MOTHERS Act, was named after a Chicago woman suffering from postpartum depression who jumped to her death in 2001.

Shields, a statuesque former model and film and TV star, suffered debilitating postpartum depression following the birth of her daughter Rowan Francis in 2003. Shields had suicidal thoughts and was finally treated with medication and therapy, experiences she recounted in her book “Down Came the Rain: My Journey Through Post-Partum Depression,” published in 2005.

“I was in such a sad, sorry, scared and devastated state,” she said. “I was guilty. It was the worst time of my life.”

She encouraged women to report symptoms to their physicians so treatment can begin as soon as possible.

“Don’t diminish it,” she said. “Don’t be afraid to be honest.’’

Elements of the law were taken from New Jersey legislation championed by Codey and adopted into law in 2006.

New Jersey was the first state to require the screening of new moms for post-partum depression.

Following the birth of her first son, Codey suffered suicidal thoughts and worried she would harm her infant. She suffered through postpartum depression again when her second son was born and was also successfully treated.

She praised Menendez for raising awareness and harnessing more research dollars for women suffering from the disorder.

Franklin Lakes resident Sylvia Lasalandra recounted her battle with postpartum depression 10 years ago following the birth of her daughter, Melina. “I lost the first nine months of my daughter’s life,” she said.

In 2005, she self-published A Daughter’s Touch: One Woman’s Journey Through Postpartum Depression’’.

“I cry for the women too afraid to ask for help,’’ she said. “The MOTHERS Act means they will no longer be ignored.’’

E-mail: layton@northjersey.com

7 thoughts on “NorthJersey.com, Home of the Pro-Pharma Censors

  1. They must be scared to have a truly open debate. It is New Jersey after all. It’s pretty clear what side of their bread is buttered on. pHARMa capitol of the world.

  2. Just listen to them. Their whole existence centers around having a “mental disorder.” God forbid, should any of them actually recover after taking all the drugs because they might cease to exist at all.

    Why doesn’t somebody force them get a life?

    That publicity seeking SSRI pushing wench Brooke Shields turns my stomach! Who can forget her academy award winning performance on the world stage in speaking at Michael Jackson’s memorial, like she was his best friend and was just heartbroken over his death, when she hadn’t seen him in years.

    Lately she’s been hawking an eyelash lengthening product that is absolutely going to harm many, many women, when the mothers of infants born with birth defects caused by Paxil (600 cases in one combined batch), are only now getting justice from Glaxo.

    The whole Mothers Act disease mongering gang is totally disgusting. The most evil I’ve ever come across with their drug pushing schemes aimed right at womb.

  3. Censorship shows that there is something there. NJ is a major center for Big Pharma. we need dialogue about these drugs to get some great debate, awareness, research, etc. The more this SSRI / birth defect issue is discussed in the opn, among everyone involved, the better.

    HOWEVER: I just don’t see the harm in MB-Stokes: it offers research funding into the phenomenon. That is about it. If I and other clinical researchers continue to examine this clincal problem, and possible cures, I largely see BETTER emerging, not worse.

    Big Pharma is ALREADY out there, with their “decision between doctor and patient,” and “weighing of risks” talk that, whenever you hear it, is code for docs to carry on with RX, and ignore the scary, emerging evidence of harm. [this is what they did with HRT until it became very clear; now they have moved on to “HRT seems OK if you limit it to a few years.]

    They do this ANYWAY. Research regarding Rx for pregnant women will NOT advance: there is NOT yet a trial of an antidepressant in a group of pregnant women. Big Pharma WILL NOT touch that one. They already have common clinical practice on their side, with (numbers vary) 8% to 15% of women who discover they are pregnant ALREADY being on one of these serotonin drugs (SSRI, SNRI).

    What to do? For people who want to combat the risks of SSRIs to women, including pregnant or breastfeeding women, help develop groundswell support for a great research agenda: evidence-based practice for depression in prepartum – totally supports talk therapy; evidence for treatment modality in postpartum dep: both pills and talk therapy (and other modalities such as couple therapy, exercise) have efficacy evidence; patient preference for treatment in prepartum postpartum depression – largely supports talk therapy; provider perceptions of efficacy – out of line with evidence; provider hesitancy to promote talk therapy – out of line with evidence and pt preference.

    Now, go identify researchers who have published similar things: pt preference, provider perceptions of availability and confidence in local mental health providers, etc., and promote this peripartum-specific research topic as a great line of resaerch for them. Help them gain access to cohorts of local ob/gyn practices to have ppl for giving questionnaires, trying puilot studies, etc.

    Because these grant dollars will be advertised soon. Either Big Pharma can go get them, or they can go to the resch agenda I am discussing.

    Go. Find the researchers. Educate them. Ask them for other researchers to talk to.

    They are in the maternal and child health journals, medical journals, health care delivery journals, womens health journals, psychology journals, medical anthropology journals.

    They are professors at your local or state universities and medical centers. Especially “teaching hospitals” and such.

    Define what you would like to know, if only a researcher could devote time, effort, and brain power to the cause of pursuing good answers to these challenges.

  4. Meds,

    The point is the disease mongering gang behind the Mothers Act has developed a whole new industry, called “Reproductive Psychiatry,” and they want to screen women (and men) for a whole slew of “pregnancy related” disorders.

    That’s my main gripe. If this bill was only going to be used to study “postpartum” depression and psychosis, I wouldn’t have felt the need to investigate and expose it. That is not the purpose.

    It’s a vehicle to convince women, and men, that the natural occurrence of child birth increases the development of mental disorders. That is simply not true!

    Go check out the postpartum websites. Check out the ones for men that claim they need screening and treatment for pregnancy related mental disorders. It’s unbelievable.

    Without investigating it fully, a person would have no idea how evil this profiteering scheme is. I’ve been investigating these screening scams for 6 years straight and this one beats all because the end result is the drugging of the fetus in the womb and nursing infants.

    And no, it’s not just the drug companies anymore. They couldn’t expect to keep raking in all the profits from these off-label drugging schemes. So they helped an entire Reproductive Psychiatry Industry develop and profit by funneling money through the usual front groups to fund the Mothers Act campaigns.

    It’s the same strategy that’s always used to implement screening dragnets. This one was just a harder sell because of the voiceless, helpless victims who will end up drugged.

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