(I wrote this 12 days ago, didn’t finish it or post it.)
So I took a break from everything
(writing) to catch up on the end
of the school year, my laundry,
more nocturnal reading and the garden.
A family crisis added to my perpetual
mental crisis made my feelings of being
overwhelmed peak in a massive
pseudo seizure yesterday.
It feels like it was two days ago
but I have begun to understand the
mental roller coaster I’m living with.
I’ve decided that my new psychiatrist
is having an ego problem. I suspected it
before, but it has been confirmed. I hate
being in the middle of two male egos.
I guess it just sucks to be me. Let me explain.
I had a minor bout of suicidal ideation
that resulted in my forced hospitalization
a month ago. I had been fairly dutifully
logging my moods on a mood chart given
to me by Dr. G. (My bear complained that
he didn’t have one, shouldn’t he have one,
why didn’t he have one? I stared at him
blankly with my mouth open until he stopped
complaining and I told him to ask his doctor,
not me. Are we to the point of comparing
treatments and competing over it???
Life is too ridiculous for me to waste my
time in a pissing match about my treatment,
with my boyfriend. Ugh.) Take that non sequitur
My side effects to Latuda and Lamictal had
been steadily been poo-pooed by Dr. G and I
was told to be patient and wait it out for
three months. My new GP told me to tell my
psychiatrist about my concerns, though
I had communicated them to Dr. G without
any change in my medication or concern
about my cognitive impairments or effing
brain fog when speaking. I appeared halfway
cognizant to Dr. G who doesn’t know me
very well when I’m used to being sharp
fairly eloquent and mentally together even
in the middle of a breakdown. It’s my curse
of being a highly functional, dysfunctional
well read woman/art geek/mother/former business owner.
Every complaint about my change in mental
capacity was received with a rebuff and was
promptly swept under the rug. (Why do people
say that? Angry complaints don’t lie quietly
in a brain much less under a rug. That would
make it very difficult to walk on and perhaps
even more likely than not intentionally trip
the unsuspecting doctor who ignored the signs
that the medications were not working well
for me.) So much for a new doctor and a new
So one Monday morning, I woke up and decided
to clean my bedroom. That should have been
a sign, but I kept cleaning anyway. It started
innocently enough, I found a tie that went to my
tie, vest and dress shirt combos, then another
tie then three or four belts.
With each new find I thought,
“I could hang myself with that.”
No anger, no terror, there was no
planning to get a drill and install a
hook in the ceiling, just seeing with the
warped perspective of suicidal ideation that
I had not experienced before. I’m a cutter, so
this was mildly disturbing and I decided that I
needed to talk to someone to figure out, “What the
hell was up?” I felt numb, but I’m not usually this
blank in the emotions department, especially at six am.
I wondered who I could call so early in the morning,
but I know that most of my friends just have too much
on their plates to deal with my crap so early in the morning.
I decided to call a warm line. Yeah, like a hotline
but not so urgent. The warmline was not open yet
so I got to speak with a hotline crisis counselor.
He was nice, unflappable, I explained my out of the blue
fixation with hanging and he suggested that I create a
safety plan. I was to eat, call one of three friends,
get my kids up, go to therapy in the afternoon and
call my psychiatrist. Great. I’m fairly ok being
compliant so I followed the plan.
1. Breakfast was dry cereal
2. Called a friend in Pennsylvania
3. My crisis got put on hold. Wet diapers control my world.
4. I was on time to therapy. She made me call my psychiatrist when
I nonchalantly commented on the fact that I could hang myself
with the electrical and window blind cords that were in her office.
She made me go to my car, bring my phone inside and call my
psychiatrist’s office in front of her. She was alarmed
because I was so calm.
5. The nurse at my psychiatrist’s office freaked out and told me to
immediately go to the emergency room or call an ambulance to
transport me to the nearest hospital.
This is where my life went “BOOM!” My balloon burst and crashed,
I wound up spending the afternoon and evening in the emergency
room followed by being transported an hour out of town to a
crisis holding tank, then admitted to a psychiatric ward
the next morning at 8am. The process was fairly complicated
and disorienting. Happily, this time, I did not get put in a
high risk ward and accused of faking seizures or being possessed.
I spoke with therapists, nurses, social workers, and a very
enthusiastic young psychiatrist (Dr H) each day. This wasn’t a
coloring book with crayons ward. They gave me pencils and let me
have my journal from my purse so that I could continue writing
or do word searches during my four day stay. Later, I’ll edit
those journal entries and post them or not.
I arrived with my bi-polar diagnosis from Dr. G only to have it
reverted back to major depression disorder and anxiety by Dr. H.
My medications were slowly tapered down and switched to a
simple cocktail of two anti-depressants Paxil and Wellbutrin XR.
The Klonapin(anti-anxiety depressant) was to be stopped and I
have Atarax (a milder anti-anxiety medication) to take as needed.
The psychiatric ward was mainly a drug and alcohol recovery unit
with about 24 plus or minus patients. The group therapy sessions that
felt mandatory, were directed primarily at the majority of patients
who were in recovery, detoxing with underlying mental illness issues
that may or may not have been diagnosed. I sat through an AA/NA meeting being told that the process was much easier if I admitted that I was an addict, so I wouldn’t get locked up in the “Looney bin” with the “crazy people.” O-kay?
Yup, time to go home. I’m not addicted to anything other than reading and writing in bed. My Major Depression and Anxiety Disorders when treated with an
anti-psychotics and mood stabilizers, turned into something that got me
Dr. G is in a snit that I’m not doing badly off his suggested meds. He told me I would relapse and to come back in two weeks. I don’t have anything nice to say about him, his bedside manner or his lack of optimism for the change in medication. He is the only doctor who could diagnose me? Is his ego so fragile that I should suffer because of indignation that his treatment plan was changed. I am the patient and I get to say what I feel I think about his mind clouding drugs. They were not right for me. I did not tolerate them. I need a new doctor.
Why can’t I find a team player for my care? I need my team to be supportive not easily insulted and petty. He demanded to know who was my doctor, how many times did I see him? How long were my sessions? He obviously thought the hospital psychiatrist was young and inexperienced. I thought he was perceptive and caring about my well being. I wish he practiced outside of the hospital.