• Please read the thread in Forum News and Announcements pertaining to race related discussion on SF - thank you :)

"Day treatment" (Group program)

Chipetele

Aspiring person
#1
Has anyone else been to something like this? The program (it's at the psychiatric polyclinic) has 8 participants and consists of

Mondays:
1. Theme group, where there's a lecture about a specific theme related to mental health and participants are invited to share/discuss the issue.
2. Movement group, where...well it's not really clear what it'll be about each time, but the first time it was about physical exercises you can do to help with anxiety

Wednesdays:
3. Conversation group (ugh this is the worst one) where there is no set discussion subject but you're expected to share personal things you struggle with, or your perspective on what others said.
4. Exercise group (or is this the worst one? It feels kind of condescending)... in normal times they'd go to a gym and exercise together but we're at the clinic in the basement, keeping our distance and doing simple calisthenics.

Thursday:
5. Mastery group. Mix between lecture and discussion (where they ask everyone to chime in) about ways to deal with mental health problems. Or, well, I've only ever been once and they said this will be "music therapy" sometimes, which sounds cringe af
6. Activity. Back in normal times they'd go bowling and things like that, in corona times we go for walks/hikes.

This was my first week on this and although it's only for 3 hours 3 days a week, I'm exhausted. It's been a nightmare, really. My social anxiety is so bad that even in a group of people with mental health issues where most struggle with anxiety, I felt like the odd one out. I was the only one who couldn't answer coherently, who'd freeze up when asked to chime in, stutter and "abort" answers and end up saying things that don't make sense. This isn't helping at all and I don't think the people who encouraged me to go on this program realized how bad my social anxiety is and for how long I've been socially isolated.
I'm the only one in this group who hasn't had a life at all. Everyone else has friends, they either have jobs or have had jobs, some are married...I'm definitely the odd one out.

It doesn't end when I go home at the end of the "day" (again, it's "just" 3 hours). I replay the things I said in my head over and over again, how much I embarassed myself, how strange I came off, how a couple of times there was a long, awkward silence after I'd fail to answer a question...and I just can't seem to calm down.

Bleh. They promised me the second week would be easier but I'm not so sure. I think I'm too damaged. I've started taking medicine (wellbutrin, supposed to be good for depression but not so good for anxiety) yesterday, it'll take a few weeks to kick in but I'll have to go on an SSRI for anxiety as well if I am to ever function, I think. Sometimes therapy isn't enough.
 
Last edited:
#2
Sorry your experience hasn’t been a good one thus far. Not sure if this was recommended you by your doctor, or your therapist, and if so — whether or not it was primarily (or in large part) designed to help combat, or give you some “practice,” with overcoming the social anxiety you speak of? Maybe something like “immersion therapy?” But I am merely speculating; of course, as I have no idea the best way to go about this... other than to say, it would seem to me, that sitting alone in one’s room, or wherever else — & isolating each & every day; or just not engaging with people in any sort of meaningful communication, or dialogue, is only going to prolong the condition. It might get worse, or stay the same. But I doubt it would get any better minus the experience/or practice “out in the wild,” so to speak. So, maybe that’s what they were thinking when assigning you to the day program. Or were they also simultaneously looking to help treat other illnesses as well? Such as depression, more generalized anxiety, or anything else? Not that it much matters. As my experience with these groups are as follows. The beginning part, of which you’ve just wrapped up (mine was more like 5 days a week and 9 hours a day, with a different “activity,” almost on each hour). Is indeed the most difficult as it takes some time to adjust to the rigors of the treatment program. Many of these that were taking part in mine were coming directly out of the hospital where they were being treated for mental illnesses (crises). Others were referred as a means of an alternative to going the inpatient route.

what did happen over the course of the time spent was that we all adapted, grew closer, and became quite attached to the structure of the program (especially for those who didn’t have anything else constructive to go home to afterwards; or what they did have was something they were not looking forward to - like perhaps the very reason they were here -m... whether that was in their personal lives, or professional / that drove them . z ) -

what I would recommend, if I were in your group , and I wanted to help you, was for you to announce to the group, something similar to what you’ve laid out here in terms of your apprehension and tentativeness, as well as your condition (social anxiety) that is making it very difficult for you to feel comfortable being open and engaging with the others who may not have the same drawbacks, or shackles chained to them. And see where that leads...

my hunch is that if it is anything like the ones that I have. Been a part of, is that there will be a United front or effort on their behalf to bend over backwards and wish/want to help you, and do what they can to make it easier, and to put you at ease—within the group setting and all of those dynamics that are at play. And clearly, a challenge when you’re faced with what you’re faced with—along with the lack of, or limited exposure.
Even if. None of them have had it, they have most likely had things close enough to be able to identify with, and relate to - that is, to empathize with you!
wishing you all the best of success~~
I know a lot of members of our groups became so close that they kept in regular contact and some Wood meet up for coffee and thing s like that long after the program ended
 

Sad Elf

Well-Known Member
#3
I haven't done anything quite so intense, but I did do group therapy for OCD. We met once a week and had a 'picture's about coping skills etc and then group discussion afterwards.

I was sceptical at the start as sharing things in a group setting is difficult. However I did find it useful and just to share experience with others was helpful.

I think so therapy is draining , but 3 times a week must be hard. I guess on the plus side it shows your working hard to get to grips with stuff.

I hope it works out and all the effort pays off
Elf
 

Chipetele

Aspiring person
#4
Not sure if this was recommended you by your doctor, or your therapist, and if so — whether or not it was primarily (or in large part) designed to help combat, or give you some “practice,” with overcoming the social anxiety you speak of? Maybe something like “immersion therapy?”
Exposure therapy. I requested a referral to the clinic for my mental health problems (don't really know/understand everything that's wrong with me and was hoping to get some help with that). At the clinic they kept pushing this program and I eventually caved.


Or were they also simultaneously looking to help treat other illnesses as well? Such as depression, more generalized anxiety, or anything else?
It's mainly to "break out of isolation" (that was their wording, I think it's a bit ambitious/optimistic), and begin to overcome social anxiety, but we also went through a list of things it could also help with, most of which I've forgotten. They said they're not going to diagnose me but their files on me say they suspect I've got GAD as well, which is starting to make more sense to me the more I think about it. The program is supposed to help people with depression as well, people who have a hard time getting up in the morning and are unable to work, a stepping stone to getting back to work.

The beginning part, of which you’ve just wrapped up (mine was more like 5 days a week and 9 hours a day, with a different “activity,” almost on each hour
Oh wow that's...wow lol. That'd be way too intense for me. How did you not burn out?


what I would recommend, if I were in your group , and I wanted to help you, was for you to announce to the group, something similar to what you’ve laid out here in terms of your apprehension and tentativeness, as well as your condition (social anxiety) that is making it very difficult for you to feel comfortable being open and engaging with the others who may not have the same drawbacks, or shackles chained to them
ugh but I can't make words happen loll. I have said things that alluded to it and of course they can all pick up on it, they've been nice but it's still very difficult.

what did happen over the course of the time spent was that we all adapted, grew closer, and became quite attached to the structure of the program
That's sounds lovely! One problem with the program (which others in the group criticized) is that it's not the same group for the full 4 weeks. Everyone is part of the group for 4 weeks but not everyone starts and quits at the same time. I'll get one more week with the same people and then people will go away and new people will join so there's not that same opportunity to become comfortable with the group.
 
Last edited:
#5
Ahhh 😌... : ) I see! Well, I think that — with some proper treatment, this can indeed be done: (that being, some meds & therapy). In the best case scenario, this would be managed by psychiatry & psychology; but can be done in other ways as well - for instance, by your regular doctor for the meds to begin with. Just keep in mind, they don’t study this anywhere as near in depth as the specialist do, who happen to do this stuff—all day / every day. But that said, antidepressants and anti anxiety medications are some of the most common for them (the non-specialists), so you may okay with just that for now if that is your current setup. . .
I think that, it will just take some practice to help get used to, grow more comfortable with, become accustomed to getting out in public settings, or where you are surrounded by others outside of the comfort of whatever settings you’re most used to now. It’s like any other learned behavior, in that sense. Which is not at all to suggest that it is easy. But that said, it can most certainly be done. With persistence and patience (I’d imagine ). GAD is very common. Kind of like being clinically depressed (not to make a perfect analogy, but more to illustrate a point).
It’s like one way to never get any better at anything that you’d like or want/wish to is to just simply never do it. Like me with computers or cooking. I never get any better at either because I don’t ever try, nor apply myself, never even attempt to take a course, or study up on my own. Etc, etc, etc...

Meanwhile, I’ve been saying the same thing for each for the past two decades! Or yes — that’s 20/twenty years! So, perhaps it is part self fulfilling; but I doubt that that’s all of it... and the more you think about it; the more upset you get, which leads to a certain level of distress. Which just leads to feeding the behavior of “not doing,” in turn. . . I stay right where I are - or am! ;) in other words: it would be far better, if I had a different perspective, and a more , or should I say “less opinionated,” view. I should not worry so much about why I am so terrible with either or in the first place. This change in mindset or philosophy, right there, already changes the psychology &/or mindset - outlook, already!
Removing many of the set, or built in excuses, fall backs, mechanisms at play when it comes to setting my self up to fail (or sometimes, even to launch 🚀 I guess most times, when thought 💭 about - & viewed in this way. . .)

now I’m not intending to suggest that those examples are very good comparisons to the crippling cases of which are on display, or for you are facing (with). But simplying trying to give some examples of what might help, in terms of what can, and cannot be controlled. If you tell yourself for ever & ever & ever, that you can’t do something. Unless something drastic changes, Or intervenes—it’s likely to stay the same way. Or in some cases, get progressively worse (over time).
Your group sounds awfully similar to mine. I’m guessing the reason for the particular rotation, is so that people can enter at their convenience—like when they’re most in need , or are ready, best prepared, etc (like coming out of the hospital or instead of going in... so you wouldn’t want to tell that person - well, so everyone can start at the same time, like a college course or something, we’ll have to have you wait a couple of weeks. . .)
And the reason we were able to do it — that is what we did, (given the nature of the structure), is that it was not designed quite as profoundly as yours - or intense perhaps 🤔; maybe efficiently might be a better way...
But I guess what they would argue, or contend, is that for those who were depressed, and hopeless. Just half the battle- maybe beyond half; it was just getting there & staying there for that routine to become habit (which it no doubt more time s than not would - ). Thus also may be the reason for the accelerated connections and fondness of the group in term s of coming together. For instance, by the last week - one young woman who’d worked / higher up in the ER of a smaller town started ordering in pizzas to sub for lunch — FOR EVERY ONE ☝️ (so, you know. . . Little things like that, could go a long way in making a big difference). I remember there was a day where we were invited to bring in and showcase some set of skills or put on display any kind of talents we might possess. And so I’d brought my acoustic guitar, and probably played & sang some nirvana unplugged or Radiohead, who knows what? Really! ;) but she so fell in love with it - (I mean, I suppose it would be easy to get hypnotized in that setting..;)) —& she immediately wanted me to play her wedding later that summer!
And I’m all like, “woahhhh...!!!! Nellyyyy!” Calm down, now little doggie 🐶 - run 🏃‍♀️ on home 🏡 to Mommy! :D
 

Please Donate to Help Keep SF Running

Total amount
$70.00
Goal
$255.00
Top