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nervous about staying in a psych ward

Discussion in 'Therapy and Medication' started by ragermoon, Aug 16, 2016.

  1. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Once I can confirm that my insurance will cover it I think I am going to check myself into the mental health facility near me. I am certain I need serious help but still feel nervous about going. My biggest concerns are:
    1) being forced to talk in group therapy. The thought of saying what's hurting me out loud to a bunch of people makes me feel completely ashamed and humiliated.
    2) that I will simply be "stabilized" and nothing more and that everything will go back to the way it was before I admitted myself. I dont expect it to make everything peaches and cream, what I'm asking is do they teach you things you can use long term to help yourself?

    Thoughts on this or any other insight on what a hospital stay is like would be greatly appreciated. thank you.
  2. JmpMster

    JmpMster Have a question? Message Me Staff Member Forum Owner ADMIN

    Checking yourself into mental health facility is not an easy process. The only way to go straight in is in crisis and that is only for crisis support- until the immediate threat passes. For longer term care you will need the recommendations of psychiatrists/ and or therapists and to find a facility that has the supports they recommend. We spent literally months trying to find such a place for my daughter after it was recommended and approved by the insurance and eventually settled for an extra weekly counseling session which is a far cry from inpatient.

    The other method to get into long term is to go in or be sectioned as acute/immediate danger to self and while in there be transferred to a longer term- most places have a 5-10 day max stay and are just for stabilization - if you go in acute and they believe you need continued inpatient even if they do nto offer it themselves they will help arrange it. It is relatively rare they will approve it based on just your say so and in general they prefer to use outpatient type setting because "fixing you" in an environment of no stress/danger to self/ or responsibility has little value once you go back to your day to day normal life.

    So far a therapies most place do use group therapies as well as individual. So far as being ashamed- I am sure that everybody feels like that including the ones talking and much like here- while talking to others seems impossible when you realize everybody has similar issues it becomes less of an issue.

    Good luck to you and i hope you can find the care you want/need. maybe calling the facility ahead of time and asking them what they do there / what the requirements are will help make the process less frustrating rather than make a plan for a type of care only to find that it is not available the way you had hoped - and put a lot of time and effort into working toward it before finding that out.
    ragermoon likes this.
  3. SinisterKid

    SinisterKid We either find a way, or make one. SF Supporter

    I would say dont do it. Its a last resort type thing. When all else has failed and there is nothing and no one to keep you safe, then thats the time you need to become a inpatient. If you are convinced you are at that point, then maybe it is time. The really sad thing is you need to be in real crisis as NYJ already mentioned.

    I thought group therapy would be really difficult, but it was surprisingly easy. I allowed others to speak and just listened at first. You dont have to talk straight away if you dont want to, they wont force you to talk, but its important you do start to talk at some point. I am still going to one group [went today] and I have made a couple of new friends and learnt a lot. But that was not as a inpatient. That was a bad experience for me.

    So think very carefully before you do anything. I would hate you to go through something that doesn't meet your expectations. I felt let down by the whole episode and couldn't get out of there quick enough. But that was partly due to being so far away from my little family which made visiting almost impossible for them. That was not good for me at that point in time. I needed their support more than ever.
    DrownedFishOnFire and ragermoon like this.
  4. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Thank you for your response. I don't mean to sound like this is a decision I am taking lightly or carelessly. I know it's not a simple process, and I know staying there isn't fun. I suppose I am operating under the hope that I will in fact be cleared to be admitted, of which I am almost certain given my current state (although I surely could be wrong). I took this particular facility's mental health evaluation online and they urged me to contact them immediately.

    I do not know what that would entail for me, be it inpatient or outpatient treatment, but I know I need one of them because this is definitely rock bottom.

    I'm sure you're right about the group therapy, sometimes I feel so isolated in my own little world I almost can't believe that someone else might feel the same (and this site does help with that).

    Thank you for taking your time out to respond and help clarify. I'm sorry your daughter had to wait so long for treatment, I hope she is doing better now. (hug)
  5. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Thank you for your reply SinisterKid.

    I guess I'm in a weird spot, because even though I'm not a danger to myself right this minute, I know that waiting to pick a psychiatrist/therapist and then waiting a week in between each session (assuming I like the first one I'm assigned to) is not something I can do. I've tried this many times and it takes me several sessions just to get comfortable and open, and I don't trust myself until then, it's only a matter of hours or days until I feel bad again and I never know if the next time will be the death of me. I suppose it is up to the facility. It's sad, because although most of me hopes I can recieve help there, a part of me is so scared that I almost hope they turn me away.

    Anyway, I'm really sorry to hear that you didn't have a good experience, and especially with your family so far away- that I couldn't imagine. :(
  6. SinisterKid

    SinisterKid We either find a way, or make one. SF Supporter

    I didn't pay much attention to your second point, sorry. You can learn as a outpatient as well, you don't have to be on a ward. i have learnt a great deal from my group sessions and one to one with my key worker. But for any talking therapy to be successful, your mood, or emotional state of mind and thoughts need to be stable and thats where the medication comes into play. So its a path you have to walk. Stability followed by progression via talking therapy onto things like CBT/DBT and others.

    Y ou are certainly in a bit of a catch 22 situation. The problem that I see you facing is the probability factor that you may or maynot be a danger to yourself at some point. You having nothing to be ashamed of whatsoever. Mental health issues affect us all in different ways and I doubt very much that you can say anything that has not been heard before by most mental health professionals and to some extent, anyone here at SF.

    I think, looking back, my expectation of what would happen on a ward as a inpatient was skewed by the fact I was depressed and suicidal. I thought it would be something wonderful, that they could fix me up in a few days, some proper meds would make me feel alright again and that was not how it works. There is no miracle "cure" and it takes time to find what works for you. So I dont think mine is a true reflection of how good/bad the experience actaully was.
  7. DrownedFishOnFire

    DrownedFishOnFire Seeing is Believing Forum Pro SF Supporter

    Been hospitalized and can explain that each hospital is very different and no experience is the same. It is all variable with which staff/nurses/docs are on duty along with their programming and other patients as well. Its the luck of the draw.
    ragermoon likes this.
  8. cvb2377

    cvb2377 Well-Known Member

    I just checked myself into the hospital in July when my suicidal thoughts and panic attacks really bothered me and I gotta say it really helped. At first I cried because I was scared but the structure of the place and the nurses made me feel safe. I was open to whatever medicine they thought I should take and none of it " sadated " me , just helped me relax. No one force me to speak up and if they asked you could kindly decline to answer or even leave the group therapy if you wanted. ( you don't even have to show up but I highly recommend it) therapy was about a lot of different things and it helped me. Also the food was good! But that's my experience hope it helps
    ragermoon likes this.
  9. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Thank you for your reply, I'm going for an evaluation in a few hours, and this did help. I have heard so many times that it's awful, and even though I know it'll be hard (if I am admitted) I hope it's not terrible. More than that though, I hope it helps me in the long run. I'm happy to hear it did for you :) Thank you
  10. SinisterKid

    SinisterKid We either find a way, or make one. SF Supporter

    Best of luck with that ragermoon, I sincerely hope it goes well and you get the care and treatment you deserve. Please do let us know how you are getting on if possible as we do care what happens to all members. Take care and stay safe ok.
    ragermoon likes this.
  11. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Yeah, this makes sense. I know others' experiences aren't predictors of mine, I just wanted to get a better idea of what I might expect. So far this facility seems nice, so I guess I will see.
  12. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Thank you so much. :) I just got home from being evaluated. I was given the option of inpatient treatment, but I didn't feel too awful while I was talking to the lady and decided I could keep myself safe for the weekend. I start outpatient treatment on Monday. Honestly, I am looking forward to it. Now all I have to do is get through the weekend. Perhaps I'll read the Star Wars trilogy. :cool:
    DrownedFishOnFire likes this.
  13. SinisterKid

    SinisterKid We either find a way, or make one. SF Supporter

    I honestly think you have made a great decision in going for outpatient treatment. Kudos to you for going out there and getting the help that you knew you needed, that takes real bottle to do that and you should be really proud of yourself for doing it.
    Dont forget about this place over the weekend ok. People will be around if you need them, but somehow, I dont think you will.
    ragermoon likes this.
  14. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    I ended up being admitted on Saturday after a bad episode, and I was discharged from inpatient treatment two days ago. I am pleased to say that the overall experience wasn't as scary or bad as I thought, and while I'm not "happy" or "cured" I do have a little bit of hope, and for now that is good enough. One of the biggest things I was worried about, group therapy, actually helped. Some of the other patients were so amazingly kind. I think I want to live... Just not the way I've been living. :)
  15. Rockclimbinggirl

    Rockclimbinggirl SF climber Staff Member Safety & Support SF Supporter

    I am glad to hear that group helped you. Are there any peer support groups that you continue to go to.
    ragermoon likes this.
  16. Unknown_111

    Unknown_111 Forum Buddy Staff Alumni SF Supporter

    I am also glad it helped YOU. Also it's good to see YOU back. Keep posting as we care.
    ragermoon likes this.
  17. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Thank you very much. I am doing an outpatient program now and finding a therapist/psychiatrist to see regularly once I'm done with that.
  18. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Thank you so much. I really appreciate the support here at SF- I must say that I don't know if I would have sought help if it weren't for this site. Every kind word, every post that I can relate to or relays some hopeful advice, helps. I hope it does the same for anyone who comes here. Take care.
    Unknown_111 likes this.
  19. a_andrews

    a_andrews Member

    Very glad to hear that you feel you are on the right track. I live in Canada and ended up being sectioned this past May. I was absolutely terrified initially but am so grateful that I had to spend some time in the hospital. While I was in hospital, I realized that i am lucky enough to have a fantastic outpatient team. Outpatient treatment is for sure the way to go. I now look forward to my weekly drs appointments, group therapy and talk therapy. Good luck on your road, and remember to just take it one day at a time - some of my days are spent taking it one hour at a time, so you just need to do what YOU need to do. Mindfulness has been a HUGE help as well!!! Much love
    ragermoon likes this.
  20. ragermoon

    ragermoon Active Member

    Thank you so much! I'm happy to hear that it helped and continues to help you :) I've only been to my first day so far but it seems like it'll be beneficial. I'm definitely in the "taking it one hour at a time" stage, but that's okay with me for now, I'm hoping someday I can have good days instead of just good moments ;)