My Time in the Psych Ward – Part One


Writing this is honestly more for myself than anyone else, but hopefully it will help some of you who do read it. I wanted to document the two weeks I spent in the Mental Hospital as a way to process it and remember it. This was a very major event in my life and even if no one else around me talks about it, I want people to know that I’m not ashamed of what I went through. Thanks for reading!

April 14, 2015

I had had a really good day actually. I had spent the day visiting my parents, I was really happy during the two hour drive home, I remember singing and stopping to take a picture of the river because it was pretty. I got back to my apartment and found out that my roommate wasn’t going to be home that night, so decided to spend the night watching movies and painting my nails.

Things were going great for awhile, and then my brain decided to take over… after that, like many nights before, I just sat there crying and begging it to shut up and leave me alone. All I could think about was how I was a failure, how overwhelming my life was, how I just wanted it to stop, how everyone would be better off without me.

I had been struggling with depression and anxiety for a long time, pretty severely for the past 3 years and to some extent all of my life. I had moved away from my home town and I was having trouble figuring out life in my new town. Because of my anxiety I hadn’t been able to get a job and my parents were still paying for everything. I was also getting married in just two months. Getting married was something I was excited about, I loved him, but I also felt someone pushed into it, like it was my only choice. And of course wedding planning and a long distence relationship was difficult. I was overwhelmed and I felt guilty for existing.

Suicidal thoughts were not new for me. Especially late at night, but I hadn’t gone through with anything yet.

I had decided that I was going to start saving up my prescriptions so that, if I wanted to, I could take them all at once and just be done with everything. I hadn’t actually done this yet though and I didn’t have that many pills in my cupboard that night. I remember searching on my phone to see if just maybe what I did have would be enough to kill me.

I had tried texting my Fiancé, my friends, anyone I could think of in my contacts, I just wanted to talk to someone. I also sent a text to a suicide hotline. But it was already early in the morning and no one was replying.

I was so tired, and so sick of all these thoughts and my life. I took one of my pills… telling myself I would only take enough to help me sleep and stop thinking. Then I took another, and another. By the time I had taken all of the pills I had, they had started working enough to calm down my brain. To the point where I was no longer sure I wanted to die and I was afraid to fall asleep in case I didn’t wake up. Somehow I managed to stay awake for hours despite all of the pills I had taken (usually just one of the pills would knock me out for the night).

The hotline I had texted finally texted back and I told them what I had done. I also texted my mother saying I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to go to the hospital but because of my anxiety I couldn’t bring myself to call someone (hence the reason why I TEXTED a suicide hotline haha) so the woman from the hotline called an ambulance for me.

I was disoriented so I’m not sure how long it actually took but it felt like just a couple of minutes had gone by when a police officer showed up banging on my door and came in. He walked me out of my apartment to the ambulance. It was probably eight in the morning at this point.

Once I was in the ambulance I signed some papers and they took me to the ER. At this point everything starts to get really blurry, I think they tested my urine, and somehow ended up in an ugly purple hospital gown (those things make you feel more naked in them than if you had nothing on). And then I just sat in the hospital bed in the ER. They apparently asked me to admit myself to the Psych Ward but I don’t remember that part. They sent a guy over from the Mental Ward to watch me ( I found out later that his name was Colin). He was asking me questions to help me stay awake and I managed to mumbled back.

My roommate and another friend came to the ER and sat with me. At one point I asked her if she had seen the girl who just walked by outside, she said “yes”, I said “she had really pink hair, that was crazy!” My friend told me that “her hair was brown”. I was totally hallucinating. Later I also said something about how they had only been there for a few minutes and I was told that they had stayed for a couple of hours! Time was moving so much faster for me. My parents showed up within what felt like minuets even though it would have taken them two hours to drive there.

I eventually was taken in a car to the Psych Ward and asked a lot of questions and who knows what else, I don’t remember any of it. Apparently I talked to staff and doctors who I didn’t even remember meeting later.

Finally I was allowed to go to sleep! It was sometime in the afternoon by now (I believe) and I had been awake since the morning before.

I slept until sometime the next day when I got up to stumble into the bathroom and throw up. I pushed the buzzer and a nurse brought me some ice chips to eat.

The rest of the day is a blur, I don’t remember what I did or anything.

End of Part One.

Do any of you have experiences with staying at a Mental Hospital that you would like to share? I would love to read them!

A Trip to the Therapist

medium_9992907753I just got back from my weekly therapy session and I’m not sure how I feel about it. Usually, if I had enough energy, I would write about it in my journal and hope to make some sense of everything we talked about. But, today, I thought I would share my thoughts here instead, in case anyone else can relate. So here are some not-very-well-organized musings of my time at the psychologists.

As I said in my last post the past few weeks have been really tough for me, harder than they have been in a long time. Even so, I don’t always realize how bad things are until I hear myself describing it to my therapist and listen to her responses and questions. That’s where I got a little scared today. Usually I come out of my session with a motivational jump start… enough to keep me going and out of a major mood drop for a few days. This time though, I heard the words “major depressive episode” and “severe depression” several times. My therapist seemed concerned about me this time, making sure I wasn’t going to be by myself and trying to come up with some more intense outside resources that might help to get me feeling better.

She said that when depression gets to the point where it is affecting every part of your life, (sleep, relationships, eating, motivation, work, school ect) that it’s important to decide how long you’re going to wait before taking more drastic measures to lift you out of it. She mentioned other forms of therapy, even daily ones, and medications (which really scare me because of bad past experiences), family therapy, and a few other options that I could consider.

We talked about my cutting and how it has gotten substantially worse over the last couple weeks. She told me that I needed to make sure I was extra careful if I cut while having any suicidal thoughts. Speaking of which… those have been pretty bad lately too. Not to the point of having a plan and trying to get the resources to do it but definitely thoughts that everything and everyone would be better off without me and I wish I had never existed. Honestly, if it didn’t take so much effort and I could do it without hurting the people I love, even more than I am already? I quite possibly would have done it already. Knowing how it would destroy my family and friends, though, has kept me from acting on it so far.

I was told to make sure that if it does gets to the point where I feel unsafe and think I might go through with it to tell someone, my parents, boyfriend, best friend, or to call her. I am not living by myself anymore because of my issues which is good I guess as far as this goes. It keeps me a little safer. She told me that if I ever feel like going through with it that I have options, texting a friend, calling a suicide hotline, or checking myself into a hospital and getting assessed, and to remember that suicide is a permanent solution to temporary problems.

At one point in our conversation she mentioned that if I remained in this severe of a depressive phase that a “live-in” option of some sort might be something to think about. She only mentioned this briefly but it has me really freaked out.  What does that even mean? That I get sent somewhere to live with super strict rules that I’d have to obey? I don’t know but it’s unnerving to think that it could get to a point where I would need that.

Overall this session was much more serious than usual and left me with a lot to think about. I am supposed to see how this week goes and if I’m not feeling better and decide I want to, I’ll sign a release form and she is going to contact a medical doctor that specializes in mental illness and I’m going to set up an appointment to go see her and explore ideas as to what I need to do to keep going in life. Because right now I am stuck.

Thank you so much for reading… just knowing that someone is reading and cares about what I have to say has helped me so much in the passed few days. I have a small purpose now and it feels good (:

photo credit: Neighborhood Nini via photopin cc