Sometimes in the world of psychiatry the hospital is a dreaded word. I know that to be true of myself, too. I have been in the hospital four different times this year. One of those stays just being in the last two weeks.
When I hear that word come out of my psychiatrist’s mouth I feel despair, but relief at the same time. There is nothing wrong with going to the hospital for treatment. It’s a way to keep ourselves safe when we feel out of control or we have thoughts of harming ourselves or other people around us.
I think the reason the hospital word is dreaded is because it has a stigma. If you are in a psych unit then you are crazy, insane, or nuts. Nothing could be further from the truth. If you need the hospital then you need it. That’s what it’s there for. Our psych unit here is excellent. I couldn’t have asked for better care each time. However, each hospital has their own protocol and set up.
I have found that my hospital stays have made me better each time. However, this year has been a very rough year for me with a ton of stress. That stress is what put me there each time. When I am under a lot of stress I hear voices and they do not say nice things to me either. They tell me to kill my self, hurt other people, and defame my character with awful things they have to ‘say’. I know they aren’t real but the hospital setting is what brings it into check every single time. It requires extra medication and a safe place to get those auditory hallucinations under control.
So….what if you need to go to the hospital? Some people are scared, some feel relief and others feel dread or other feelings. I can relate to those feelings. My experience has been that the hospital isn’t used enough. I think there are patients out there who need to be there but are scared to go. What will Mom think? What will Dad think? Am I crazy for going there? My suggestion is to not second-guess yourself and go. Don’t worry about what others will think. Find those out there who will support you. For me, it’s just my husband and one other friend. Then there’s the awesome Ask a Bipolar Facebook group and the awesome website, too you can use for support.
My suggestion to those of you suffering with that decision to go or not to go is to GO! You will feel some relief. You will be safe. You will have staff to take care of you and do your meds. You can rest and catch up on sleep if you are deprived of it when you arrive there. Be bold and stand up for yourself if you can. Don’t worry about what others think. Do the best you can and attend the group setting therapies they have available there. They do help.
I do not like to see or hear of people suffering on their own. Reach out to others and if it’s the hospital you need then do it!