Perhaps the most worrying aspect of mental health problems for the patient is the reaction of other people to their 'condition'. Often the reaction is one of embarrassed silence. For this reason, I say I have been in 'hospital' and avoid saying why or naming either Marchwood, Melbury Lodge or Connaught House. It would be easier to explain a burst appendix.
The Main Differences to me between the Private and NHS Mental Health Hospital
Lovely rooms with en suite facilities and television in rooms
No locks on bathroom doors!
Plenty of staff so if you needed to talk you could always do so
Regular/daily appointments with counsellors/psychiatrists, etc
Staff did not wear uniforms so relationships less formal perhaps
Much larger patient:staff ratio and no regular counselling sessions
I felt very lonely – this is different to wanting to be alone – there was very little privacy
Less attractive surroundings
The Main Differences to me between the Private and NHS Mental Health Hospital continued ...
I could hide if I wanted to and be left alone without intrustion or intervention – that mattered a lot to me
Here I felt I could take life at my own pace
Bathrooms did have locks on doors!!!
CV involved staff even coming with you to the loo!!
Here I felt under pressure each day at least to demonstrate some pretence of wanting to move forwards – I felt it was the only way I could get out – the only other route was suicide which one patient chose whilst I was there
Consultant Psychiatrist Occupational Therapist Care Worker Psychiatric Nurse
THERE ARE, OF COURSE, OTHER HEALTH PROFESSIONALS WHO BECOME INVOLVED
These are really 'good guys'. They are teachers of life skills; they are great listeners; they can be putting you through your paces on an anxiety management course one minute, and partnering you in badminton the next. They get you 'back on track' so-to-speak.
Difficult to spot – may be dressed in 'classic' clean cut straight out of public school attire, or promoting the 'alternative' life-style of pony tail and tie-dyed t-shirt.
These guys do not judge you.
I SO DO NOT NEED A SOCIAL WORKER OK? That was before I met Len
Learning to set realistic goals – the following demonstrates this ...
STORY OF A LIFE IN FIVE CHAPTERS CHAPTER ONE I walk down the street There is a deep hole in the pavement I fall in, I am lost, I am helpless It wasn't my fault
CHAPTER TWO I walk down the street There is a deep hole in the pavement I pretend I don't see it. If fall in again I can't believe I'm in the same place But it isn't my fault It still takes a long time to get out
CHAPTER THREE I walk down the same street There is a deep hole in the pavement I see it there, I still fall in, it's a habit My eyes are open I know where I am It is my fault I get out immediately
CHAPTER FOUR I walk down the same street There is a deep hole in the pavement I walk around it
CHAPTER FIVE I walk down another street oooOOOooo
THE BENEFITS Obvious – exercise Less Obvious – contact with others and building of social skills THE BENEFITS Obvious – exercise Less Obvious – contact with others and building of social skills
I have to confess I often find myself peering closely at myself in the mirror looking for signs of 'madness' – some kind of distant look in the eye or the wild, uncontrollable edge of a typical James Bond style villain.
Actually, when things are really bad looking in the mirror is something I avoid – because I am frightened that I will see exactly that