I’m home; my war paint is off (aka my makeup is washed off), my pajamas are on, and I’m pretty much ready to go to bed (it’s early, but I’m tired today). I finally have a chance to recount what happened today. If you read my blog last week, you’ll know I was let down greatly by a program that was 1) supposed to re-diagnosis me and 2) supposed to help me with medications/therapy while I currently am teetering on a crisis. I was set up for intake last Thursday, just to be told Wednesday night that they no longer accept new patients; complete and total screw up that made my mental health plummet. Friday I (attempted) to be proactive, and I called an IOP (intensive outpatient program) that I had been a part of twice prior. Monday was my intake, and today was my first day.
Part of me was (initially) a little ashamed. I was embarrassed that I had to go back to a program that I had already gone through twice. I was ashamed my mental health was at the point that I needed intensive care. I was humiliated, and I felt like I let down. I was paranoid, and terrified. However, I was recognizing that being without assistance and being alone with my thoughts was a lot more terrifying than any other fear I had.
I obviously can’t go into complete detail about the program, for privacy reasons. And I won’t go into detail about a lot over the next few weeks while I’m in the IOP (I will however share life lessons, things that come up for myself, and shed some of the knowledge I learn while at the program). However, going into this program, completely honest, and open, ready to receive help, has been tremendously healing, even in the 48 hours I’ve been involved.
The truth is, getting help isn’t as scary as we make it out to be in our heads. There aren’t a lot of Nurse Ratchets left in the world (although, there are some, and I have run into them in the past) and psychiatric care has come a long way from where it is (and yes, there is a lot of room to grow, but considering where we’re at now, I’m impressed and comfortable). It’s okay to seek help. It’s okay to say hey, I’m not okay. Suicidal thoughts aren’t normal, they aren’t something you need to just “deal with.” They’re just as serious as someone complaining of chest pains and suffering from a heart attack.
Today I received a new diagnosis (no longer bipolar, and I’ll dive more into that topic this week), new medications, and a new outlook on life. I know I’ll never be cured. But I have faith, when I find a good program such as this, that I will be able to manage my mental health, and will be able to steer clear of major crisis.
If you, or someone you know is suicidal, please don’t be afraid to reach out. Call 9-1-1, go to a hospital, or text Crisis Text Line at 741741