Remember that post a few days ago where I said I go into the forest not to kill myself, but to not kill myself?
Well, I went in there to kill myself.
Long story short, the police were called on me.
I messaged my boyfriend frantically saying someone needed to come get my car, and two minutes after he arrived we hear the sirens. A female sheriff rolled up and another male sheriff rolled up with a social worker from the county in the back of his car. They would not let me drive home. I had two options: emergency room at the regular hospital, or intake emergency at the psychiatric hospital.
Kill two birds with one stone why don’t we; remember in that last post how I said the magical ways I see the forest keep me out of the hospital? Well, fuck that to hell too.
I refused to go to the emergency room at the regular hospital because they would only redirect me to the psychiatric one, most likely against my will. That’s how this emergency room operates now; they’ve changed their policy and the sheriff didn’t know I knew that.
The social worker was a very calm, nice man from the county. He knows about the place I work and coaxed me into heading to the facility. If I would have said no, they would have taken me involuntarily because of the self-harm that day.
They give me the little hospital socks in the intake room and take away my shoes. They take my vitals, including my temperature, then lead me to the interview rooms that are just white slabs of painted concrete and two leather chairs. They give me a blanket because it’s minus one thousand degrees Fahrenheit in there, at eleven in the morning.
A nurse comes in and starts firing questions. At this point my energy is drained. It didn’t really register that I was now in the lions den.
Another woman came in, an LCSW, who also happened to conduct assessments. She couldn’t really figure out how to break through my affect. She tried cracking jokes, she tried putting words in my mouth (something about how a part of me is “broken” and “needs a cast” and that hopefully I can get my “cast” at the hospital). I got to speak for a good four minutes out of the forty five minutes we spent together. She tried relating by using street language like “shit”.
I remained monotone. I try so hard to put emotion and gestures and make eye contact with people. But I couldn’t keep up the act anymore. I dropped everything and showed my natural state for once: no eye contact, no emotion.
When the woman tried telling me my low self esteem was apart of this, I jerked my head up for once and refuted very bluntly: I don’t have low self esteem; I’m pretty confident in my abilities and what I can do. She didn’t really know what to say at that point.
I was given a cup to pee in. I peed in it.
They said I could either be in a quiet, lit up room, or a darker one. I chose the darker one with the television on: vice presidential debate. Could this day get any worse?
I figured they’d take about an hour or two figuring out “my plan”. The LCSW said she would recommend that I get transferred to a more long term psychiatric facility for a full evaluation but that it wasn’t her choice. Evidently it wasn’t mine either. I didn’t get a say in “my plan”. That should have been my first clue.
By the time seven p.m hit, I realized I wasn’t leaving. I also realized I was officially in the lions den and I needed to play this smart.
We didn’t get beds, but recliner chairs that kind of turned into beds. I slept with about six or seven other people, all of us watching a marathon of “Chopped Junior”. Every two hours the RN’s came in checking my vitals particularly because they said my blood pressure was a little high and not going down. I fucking wonder why?
Is this really how it is? Asking permission to use the goddamn bathroom like a two year old? I can have a spork in my oatmeal but can’t be trusted with a television remote? I’m so confused on so many levels.
Not one RN or therapist talked to me the rest of the day, night, or the following day. I went to sleep with my final realization that I couldn’t take it any longer. There were no windows, and because of where this facility is located there is also no outdoor place we’re allowed to go. If they can’t trust us to go into a bathroom than there’s no way in hell they’re trusting us to be in the parking lot.
You had to ask for food. You had to ask to take a shower. Ask to use the bathroom. Ask for pillows. There weren’t even any clocks. Ask for this, ask for that, like I’m a toddler on a leash stuck in a windowless hell. I couldn’t take it. Not after seeing how Second Story is run.
Although I had no choice in coming here, because I didn’t make a fuss in making the choice to come, I was considered voluntary. They asked me in front of the seven other people if I still wanted to kill myself. That’s how they woke me up. For fucks sake. And that RN really wonders why my blood pressure was high?
I told them not at the moment. Which was a lie. We went into the other room for a more full assessment and I was done playing their game. I knew if I chose to let them keep me on a hold, if I chose to go to the longer termed facility, my rights would vanish.
In the time I was there, I refused medication anywhere between twenty to thirty times. I was there for almost three days. If I signed my rights away to the long term hospital my refusals would have been for nothing because they’d stuff pills down my throat faster than a neuron can fire. That’s pretty fast.
So I left the hospital feeling pretty confused on what the fuck just happened. I was so happy to see sunlight I started laughing hysterically out the door. That looked totally normal.
I thought about the few people I’d actually got a chance to meet. One guy was so drugged up he didn’t know what the hell he was doing, and woke me and this other girl up at seven in the morning by running around on all fours like a possessed monkey. I thought he would climb on the walls and twist his head around and screech. One of the other guys held his hand out and was like “whoa boy, heel, heel! Slow down there!” He told the guy running around to protect his stuff while he went out in the hall.
The guy who went out into the hall got bombarded by a RN who needed urine sample from him. He argued. And argued. And argued. Finally the RN just screamed “Just pee in the cup!”
He went to the bathroom with the cup. The nurse asked him if it was water. They argued and she took it back to the lab. When she came back, she held it up to his face and shouted “This is water and spit! Now why would you do something as silly as that?”
Me and the other girl were having a jolly time laughing it up. What the fuck was going on in this place?
It was funny until the one guy who was climbing around on all fours suddenly stopped moving. He’d either sit in the doorways or just stand. Sometimes he’d pace in circles and bang really hard on the door. It was obvious he just needed some attention. But people told him to stop banging and ignored him. Until he finally plopped down in the middle of the floor and refused to budge.
Rather than sit down next to him or ask how he was doing, a nurse called in his ear like he was deaf: “do you want some medication? We’ll get you something to make you feel better.”
At that point I was officially done. As much as I need a break from everything in my life, and my mental health, I’m not risking my fucking safety for this bullshit. The last thing I told the woman in the chair behind me was “God, get me the fuck out of here.”
She wished me good luck, and I her.
Now I am home. Rattled, depressed, and more frustrated. What a waste of time.
Can’t wait for the bill because of my no health insurance. Wonderful.