The Mental Health System is broken!

Discussion in 'Rants, Musings and Ideas' started by TrentGrad, Feb 18, 2015.

  1. TrentGrad

    TrentGrad Well-Known Member

    I've been in and out of the mental health system for about 7 years now, and I have to say I'm at a point where I feel like it's broken.

    In my opinion, it seems more designed to make careers for some people than it is to actually help people. Don't get me wrong...I think those people who work in it often enter it wanting to help people, and I think they try...but if they don't succeed, they seem prepared to wash their hands of you, or even look for an excuse to make it look like you're not willing to put forth the effort to help yourself.

    Today I met my social worker, and mentioned something to her in passing that I know I've talked about...and she says to me "that's've not mentioned that in a while." And though that seems so innocuous of a statement, the reality is that it really felt like what she was saying was "you're making that up."

    I mean there's a lot of things that are second nature to me because I do or experience them everyday...if I'm not mentioning it, it doesn't mean that either it didn't happen or hasn't been her reason for saying that is a bit of a mystery to me, but if anything what it's doing to me is making me retreat further into myself.

    And add to that a psychiatrist that constantly reminds me that the old psychiatrist I had should have remained burdened with me leaves me feeling so beyond hope!

    I've done pretty much everything I've been asked to do...and I have the memories of some pretty nasty side effects as proof of that...but I feel like now I'm practically being dared by the vary health care network supposed to help attempt to end my life. :(

    But while governments and charities are contributing money to fight mental health challenges, all I see is the groups that used to be offered at the offices where my social worker is...have been replaced with more offices for more employees...while the groups themselves are no longer offered! It seems like a make work project with some very well meaning people...who have less to offer those in need of help! :(

    I'm sure that both the psychiatrist and my social worker would disagree with my assessment of the way I'm being treated...but given how I can count on my one hand the number of times in the past couple of years that my social worker has been on time for an appointment, and I can count on my one hand the number of times I've been late for an appointment over the same period of time, it's hard for me to not see all of this as an example of how low priority those of us who are struggling with mental health conditions seem to be!
  2. total eclipse

    total eclipse SF Friend Staff Alumni

    I do agree that times there seems the system does fail the very ones that need it the most it is as if they close their eyes and turn their backs because they chose not to hear
    the pain the suffering and instead of reaching out they walk away

    i will never understand how professionals who are to care for the sick for the suffering just refuse to see and hear or even acknowledge the pain of another being
  3. betteroffunknown

    betteroffunknown Well-Known Member

    I totally agree with you! There are issues within the system!! I know, speaking only for the state I live in, that they have hired more staff (and it's still not enough) to meet the increased demands since Obamacare started. I'm a part of the mental health system not only as a client, but am also doing client advocate work with the state and behavioral health so I see what's going on from a few different angles.

    I'm definitely NOT trying to make excuses for anyone or justify anything, but by sharing this the hope is that you'll have a little better understanding from the different sides. Unfortunately there's absolutely nothing simple about the changes that are happening, and the changes are far from over.

    I know they've done away with groups at my local mental health center as well, also to the dismay of some. It's part of the restructuring going on to align with Obamacare. I'm not saying Obamacare has said to have no groups! It's just that the mental health centers now have to take on far more than they did before it came along. I think they simply don't have enough people to oversee them with the new additional case loads they're seeing, and it is basically forcing their hands to change the way they do things.

    With this Obamacare they have to focus on outcomes more when the old system just focused on how many were walking through the door (basically). This is understandably causing quite the stir with the professionals trying to treat the additional case loads. I know just in my region alone the mental health population has risen by nearly 50,000 new folks hooked up with mental health services since Obamacare started. That's the increase in just six counties; it doesn't include the rest of the state!

    Mental health here now oversees Substance Abuse as well. SA used to be its own deal, but now it's not so there's a lot of integration going on with all that, too. Plus here they're also having to include clinics now to treat physical issues in the mental health centers, too.

    Again, I'm a client too, so I totally get your concerns and frustrations!! Unfortunately, it's going to take a long while for things to get straightened out. You can always file complaints or request a new case worker and doctor. (I would strongly recommend it.) No matter how big their case load they shouldn't be talking to you the way they do!!! It's unethical and unprofessional, and it isn't going to help the outcomes anyone is seeking to reach - especially YOU!!

    Please take care!

    All the best
  4. betteroffunknown

    betteroffunknown Well-Known Member

    Just one more thing right quick. I need to apologize because the more I've thought about it I'm not entirely convinced the actions of your social worker or doc are 'unethical' or 'unprofessional' as I said before, but they do demonstrate a lack of interest in meeting people where they're at and seeing people feel better. I would still encourage you to see if you can get a new social worker and doc! Doesn't sound like there's a good 'connect' with either of them, and I totally believe there's a better fit for you out there somewhere!!

    Hang in there! It'll work out!!

    All the best