Last night I realised the positive power of social media and once again the short falls of my local after hours crisis centre. I am both amazed and appalled that women who I have never met IRL helped more than trained ‘professionals’.
Things came to a head like a great big pussy pimple and I needed help stat! I had been texting my best friend back and forth most of the day. I had been waiting a week for my case manager to call me back, I missed her call. I spent the rest of the day building up the confidence to call back and working out what to say. I finally called her back and she told the receptionist that she would call me back…she didn’t…again.
I have very, very, very little faith in my local crisis team and inpatient unit. So the fact that I relented and called them, I think shows the frame of mind that I was in, and the distress that I was feeling.
As soon as a voice answered on the other end I blurted out “I want to cut myself”. He asked if I had spoken to anyone else about this and I said that I had been waiting for my case manager to call me back but she hadn’t. What did he surmise from this? That the solution to my crisis was to send my case manager an email and problem fixed. I started crying and asked what I was supposed to do in the mean time? His answer? I sent your case manager an email, problem solved. I called him a wanker and hung up.
He called back…I won’t bore you with the details but the conversation pretty much followed the same line as the first one…my problem was already solved. I told him I wasn’t coping with my child and the care of him and he told me that everyone goes through that and to suck it up, go watch a movie and it will blow over. I. Am. Not. Kidding.
The scary thing about this experience? It’s not a one off, they weren’t just having a bad night. I can count on one finger the amount of times that they have been helpful. They are the first port of call before being hospitalised. If you present at the ED, you have to pass these gate keepers. Depending on the time that you present…you might not even see a doctor before being sent on your merry way. Regardless of your state you can be sent on your way without seeing a doctor.
I have been dragged to the ED by police and still they said that the Dr didn’t want to leave the comfort of his bed and send me on my way. Even the police were appalled.
The first time I had contact with them my parents had driven 8 hours for the ‘privilege’ only to be told ‘she’s not old enough to be in our unit’ even though at the time I was 18 and a half. Our referring GP was told that I was guaranteed a bed and that I needed to be hospitalised. It took my mum ‘making a scene’ for them to admit me. Even though I had just gone through surgery to fix something I had done to myself, I wasn’t considered ‘sick enough’.
I am really appalled that as a developed country we still have this fight to have mental illness treated and to be treated with respect. Most of the time we don’t have the energy to jump through the hoops they set for us and self harm, criminal activity, drinking, taking drugs is just ‘easier’ than having to deal with the crap these ‘professionals’ deal us.
Decided to link up with Dear Baby G‘s For Fuck Sake Friday. Pop over and show some comment love or link up with a post if you have something that has been driving you up the wall this week.
The public mental health system in Australia sucks dogs balls. I am sorry to be obscene but it is the truth.
Sorry you got caught up in the shit fight. Glad Twitter could help.
The mental health system is a complete joke. I’m so glad twitter were able to help you get through, because people like the ones you spoke to should be shot for treating you that way xx
I cannot believe he said that to you WTF??? no actually i can believe it because there ARE such unsympathetic idiots out there. People like that really shouldn’t be allowed to work in such an occupation because they have no idea how they could affect someone. IM APPALLED!
Jesus, Teegs. Words fail me.
What is ‘sick enough’? I’m shocked.
‘Sick enough’ is usually already harmed. Then they have to tick all the boxes to cover their arse.