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Poor Inpatient Experience

Have you been a victim? Or have you contributed to your own stigma?

by lisastout » Sun Nov 27, 2016 6:10 pm

I'll admit, I stole most of this from one of my blog posts because I'm too lazy to retype all of this. Just wanted to share a particular experience.

On one of my first days during a recent stay at an inpatient facility, were told that we had to attend a mandatory meeting. The nurse's assistants and other occupants of the facility were all gathered in the rec room. The intent of the meeting was to 'lay down the law' for us newcomers. I sat there, halfway listening as an assistant droned on and on "....and there will be no hookups, this is not matchmaker.com...", blah, blah, blah, "...and smoking is kept to a strict schedule that you can find in your folders..." , blah, blah blah, "We strongly advise that you do not share the reason for your admission with other occupants..", blah, blah, blah. Suddenly, she said something that made me flush with anger "..and ya'll don't need to be trying to help each other. Ain't none of y'all nurses, and ain't none of ya'll got degrees!". Um, excuse me?? I was heated. The rationale for my anger was twofold. The first reason being that they automatically assumed that a person seeking help for a mental health crisis couldn't possibly be educated. I was angry not only for myself, but for everyone else sitting in that room. To my left sat a scientist and to my right sat a pharmacy technician. The second reason was that I am a nurse, and she was completely incorrect in her assumption. I interjected before she could continue on in her sad little power kick by advising that I was educated and that I was a nurse. I probably made an ass of myself, but I couldn't help but have the urge to just slap the authoritative smirk off her face. Lucky for me, I resisted the urge ;)

It's so disappointing that even within the healthcare system itself there are such stigmas. I wish there was more that I could do to help change that.
Lisa
"I can't explain or justify what's in my mind or why I cry"
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by Lovehope » Sun Nov 27, 2016 6:20 pm

That's disgusting. I'm sorry you had such a crap experience. I work in the mental health field and have found myself inpatient twice. And I'm damn good at my job because of my life experience. You never know people's life stories and that person never shold have assumed. That's bullshit. I'm infuriated for you that you had to sit through some crap like that
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by Lovehope » Sun Nov 27, 2016 6:23 pm

By the way, don't lose hope. I'm not sure where you are from but in the United states there are many movements at the state level to make treatments more person centered. I am a part of it. It is a very slow change but people know the shit that goes on and they are working to change that kind of nonsense
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by lisastout » Sun Nov 27, 2016 6:44 pm

Thanks :)

I'm in the US also, I'd love to learn more about what you're doing and if there is anything I can do to help in my state!
Lisa
"I can't explain or justify what's in my mind or why I cry"
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by Lovehope » Sun Nov 27, 2016 7:41 pm

I work within my county to change the system. There is a big movement in my county to get people who have received treatment to be a part of the decision making process for many things. So when workgroups meet to discuss how to spend money from certain grants they really want to hear where the money should go from the people who are receiving the treatment. There's also a big movement out there for people to tell their story at conferences and there's a thing called system of care where people come together with stakeholders, professionals, family members, people receiving treatment, etc to make the mental health system better.

Its a lot to explain but that's just my county. I would check with your county behavioral health office and see if there is any way you can get involved. Some counties and states are really up to date with getting the people who actually receive the treatment to share their voice and others are hesitant about it and behind the times. See what you can do!!
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