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I don't really know where to begin...Ill try to summarize as best I can so I don't write an entire biography here.

I've always been a bit "weird". But as an artist, we're all kind of "weird".

I lived in the same city my entire life, but I got into a well respected grad school out of town through my art. I made the move, and now I'm living in a city full of strangers. At first things were great, I felt happy and optimistic. I thought I had friends and was making steady progress in school. Before moving my art had gone from various studies and doodles to a recurring theme of faces, within faces. Everytime I sat down to draw I would just draw face after face, some overlapping eachother, some made by the combination of that overlapping. It was just fun at first, but after a while trying to draw anything else felt near impossible. While creating these drawings I would just zone out, and not think.

Part of the reason I decided to go to grad school wasn't really for the education, but as a way to get out from under my parents' roof, and it was at the worst point in the most recent recession and was having a nearly impossible time finding any work, steady or freelnce. My dad and I never really got along very well, and I was beginning to think he might try to poison me in order to get rid of me. I knew this was stupid and illogical but the fear was in me every day. To the point I wouldn't eat anything prepared by him unless it was a communal dish that everyone in the family served/ate from. I never said anything about it and to this day my parents have no idea I had that going through my head the entire last year or so that I lived with them. At the time I thought it was just the stress of living with parents. But I had become more lethargic in general as well, and felt guilty for it and thinking this might be the main reason why they would want to get rid of me. My friends told me they wondered why I would dissappear for a while, but I chocked it up to my "weirdness". I had several jobs but got fired or tired of each one. Everything from pizza cook to head shop clerk to field archeology all within a span of a year or so.

But I went to grad school, and things were great at first.

The end of the first semester: One day my professor called me into his office, saying he was concerned with my lack of passion and the seeming degradation of my work. I hadnt really noticed it happening but it was. I tried harder than ever to pull some work together and managed to stay in the program.

The next semester things started to get worse. I became more and more withdrawn but didn't notice it at the time. I spent and still spend nearly every hour of every day in my room and going out to even pick up dinner from a fast food joint feels like the most horrible kind of torture. I wait until I don't hear any noisess in the house before going out for a smoke because I don't want to run into any of my roommates. I began to skip classes not because I didn't want to go as much as I didn't want to see or hear people. Being around people seemed to make me on edge, and my mind would race. I picked up biking to help me get some exercise and sun, as well as clear my head. It worked great at first, but after blowing two tires I haven't gotten around to riding anymore. I keep telling myself everyday to load up my bike, take it to the bike shop where it has a lifetime tube/tire replacement plan, and have them done, but every day I dont do it.

I was put into a team of artists and was tasked with a pretty major role. I thought I was doing well, but was asked to meet with my team lead privately. The work I had done was near worthless despite the fact I thought I had checked it. I should state this was a technical task, though art based it wasn't the artistry that was in question but the fact the thing just didn't technically work. I apologized for the oversight and asked for a day to do some repairs.

This is where things started to take a turn for the worse.

The next day I came in looking for our assistant professor for some help with my project. What I found instead was my team lead sitting down with my assistant professor going over my work. Needless to say I was little upset but I tried my best not to show it. I thought I did a good job of it. However on our way out I couldve sworn I heard my team leader talk about me under her breath. But I decided it wasnt worth worrying about. I asked her why she would go behind my back, she didnt really answer, then I went to my desk. At this time I thought I handled the situation pretty well. When I went back to my desk I thought I heard people mocking me in the cubicle next to mine, so I packed up and left. When I went out to my car and popped my trunk to put my laptop in the back, I saw my old little league baseball bat Ive always kept back there as just sort of a habbit from being raised in a rough neighborhood. I had an urge to go smash the windows of the school in anger but I fully knew how crazy that was and closed the trunk.

The next day my professor calls me into his office. My team lead had apparently told my professor I yelled at her, used inapropiate language, and punched a wall or threw something (she just said she heard a loud noise) before leaving. I didn't remember doing any of these things and told him so. I assumed she was lieing as a way to cover her own ass, but the assistant professor backed up her story. This really made me question my own perspective. I told him I would apologize to her and try to make sure things were set right.

We met, and I apologized, as did she for not giving me a chance to correct my mistake before taking it up with the professors. But when we walked out I clearly heard her say "psycho". Later I asked her if there was any work for me to do, and she looked at me confused and then basically told me I was off the team, and that some of the other teammates just weren't "comfortable" around me. When I tried to apologize to her she acted as if she was afraid of me. Unwilling to look me in the eye and it looked almost as if she was trembling.

It was at this point I knew something was off. I was so sure I had not acted out, I began to think they were somehow against me. And I still in a way feel like I was set up to fail. But I know logically this just isnt the case.

There have been other minor incidents as well. Times I thought people were talking about me when I know they cant be. Everytime anyone laughs and I'm not aware of the punchline I can't help but immidiately assume they are laughing at me and suddenly become very self conscience. I've started talking to myself more, and without realizing it. I came in one day and my desk had been slightly rearranged and there was a roach trap sitting in my office chair. At the time I immidiately thought someone was trying to get at me, or embaress me so I skyped some fellow students asking who it might be. Their responses made me realize I was being a bit paranoid, and as it turned out my stuff was moved for some electrical work, and the roach trap in my chair was probably just left there by accident when moving all the desks around early that morning.

When talking to people I think or thought were my friends they either seem to completely lose interest in anything I'm saying or all together avoid me. I do have a couple friends in my hometown who I stay in toch with and don't sense any sort of negative judgementalism from them. Ive began completley losing track of what I'm talking about sometimes, occasionally a word will seem to just sort of fall out of my ear. Names and places and facts I should know often seem to be on the tip of my tongue but out of grasp.

My grandmother on my dad's side was psychotic. I'm horrified of the notion that I could be like her. My dad told me stories of her chasing my grandfather with a knife, rambling about random things, and the strange lucidity she would sometimes posess while other times being near catatonic. Also, my grandfather on my mom's side was mentally disturbed as well but tried to mask it with a heavy dose of alcoholism and spouse abuse.

Now its the end of the second to last semester. Ive been living in my room completely, skipping class occassionally for mental health days. Im still passing, but not doing well. My professor wants to know whats wrong with me but I cant tell him I think I might be going crazy. I'm in the corporate side of the art world and something like that black balls you and follows you the rest of your career. Ive had to keep coming up with excuses, from hemroids to car trouble. But I'm sure he suspects something is up. Last time he called me into his office there was a guidance counselor from the school with him, but they never asked anything about my mental state, and to my surpise the counselor actually told me "dont worry about those girls on your last team, they are just being women". I actually found this quite sexist and offensive even though it was meant to be a defense of my actions.

My dreams are becoming more and more realistic. They are often lucid and I am able to fly at will, but they are more vivid and stronger than ever. Sometimes when I wake up its like I'm still half dreaming for a while. Ive never slept much, but its been getting worse. I've been sleeping for 8-12 hours every two days or so, but not on a regular schedule its constantly shifting.

So now I'm completely stuck between a rock and a hard place.

I can't stop going to grad school because the only place I can go is my parents' house, and I can't deal with that again. They are wonderful people, really, I know they are, theyve never really done anything to physically harm me in any shape or form and were generally loving as I growing up. But for some reason I find myself fearing them now, sometimes even feeling a wierd since of disgust when Im around them. Not to mention im only about 3 months shy of graduating and have spent thousands of dollars in loans already.

I can't get help from my school because it states very clearly on the main page, as well as in the student handbook, that if for any reason you are suspected of being a danger to yourself or others you will be promptly asked to leave the school. All the fear from the school shootings of the past 20 years has really not done much to help people in situations like this.

I can't find any sort of anonymous help or even half decent non-outdated resources online. Seems like most of the pages are completely inactive and havent been updated in years. The ones that are still up look to be more giant advertistements for pharmaceuticals than a genuine desire to help anyone. I took some jung tests, looked at a lot of information online and everything points to schizophrenia or some offset there of especially with a family history of it.

I do not think I am a danger to myself, nor to anyone else. I'm not a violent person by any means. In fact I do nearly everything I can to avoid confrontations or even defuse them. The fact the team lead was acting as if she was scared of me really horrified me. I'm generally viewed as a big lovable teddy bear by most, and have often been told I'm "one of the nicest people I (they) ever met". Animals and children seem attracted to me like a magnet and often won't leave me alone even if I want privacy so I cant be too scary of a person. I don't want people to be afraid me, for me it was the worst thing I ever felt. However soon after this happened I called a life long friend of mine from my hometown and asked if I had ever seemed scary or in any way threatening growing up, and he told me there are times when I get really unpredictable but that those were extremely rare, and that he had only seen me like that a couple times in our 10 or so years of friendship.

I want help to make sure I don't go too far down the rabbit hole, but I don't want pills. I hate drugs of all types and always have. I don't even like caffeine or alcohol except in extreme moderation. However I have been self medicating with way too many cigarettes. I don't want to be anchored down to medications for the rest of my life, and I don't want side effects. I fully believe if I can just figure out a way to see a therapist without being forced to leave school or start taking medications I will be much better.

I'm torn between the fear of failure/joblessness/massive debt without a means to repay, and the fear of my own loss of sanity.

Edited by heffington

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I deleted a lot of what I wrote originally because I felt my initial post may have been kind of alarmist, based on my own baggage.

I would say to definitely get in therapy ASAP. A good therapist can do wonders. Be sure to take it easy on yourself... eat well, don't drink too much caffeine, and be sure to get enough sleep... Was in art school myself (it definitely has its own particular demands, and can be pretty difficult) and would often pull all nighters, which can be a trigger for psychosis especially as you get older and your body can't recover as quickly. See if your parents will help you with getting therapy... the website for the magazine Psychology Today has a database where you can read therapists' profiles and see their specialties/views/qualifications. About pills... keep in mind that sometimes you only have to stay on them for a while until you are more stable.

Edited by koakua

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Guest Vapourware

If this helps you - just because a family relative of yours had psychosis doesn't necessarily mean you will develop it too. Genetics is very rarely 100%.

That's interesting about your school's policy, but I wonder if they were referring to more extreme behaviour from people. Unless I'm mistaken, schools have to provide some sort of support for students when they are stressed? It sounds like you have some form of control over yourself at the moment and it sounds more like that you are afraid of going crazy, which indicates to me that you are, well, not that crazy yet :) If that makes sense. People tend to have a decent amount of insight into their behaviour if they still have a good grasp of reality.

Whatever it is that you are experiencing, it does sound like you are under some sort of stress. Personally, I don't think there is any sign of psychosis in what you are describing.

I wonder if there is a counselling service at your school, because it sounds like it might be worthwhile speaking to one. Counsellors are a confidential service so if you go to one, that sort of information isn't going to be made free and readily available to others. If you don't want to approach the school at all, then I suggest looking around outside the school for a doctor at least, and get a referral for them to see someone.

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....

The next semester things started to get worse. I became more and more withdrawn but didn't notice it at the time. I spent and still spend nearly every hour of every day in my room and going out to even pick up dinner from a fast food joint feels like the most horrible kind of torture. I wait until I don't hear any noisess in the house before going out for a smoke because I don't want to run into any of my roommates. I began to skip classes not because I didn't want to go as much as I didn't want to see or hear people. Being around people seemed to make me on edge, and my mind would race. I picked up biking to help me get some exercise and sun, as well as clear my head. It worked great at first, but after blowing two tires I haven't gotten around to riding anymore. I keep telling myself everyday to load up my bike, take it to the bike shop where it has a lifetime tube/tire replacement plan, and have them done, but every day I dont do it.

.....

This part of your post sounds exactly like me, almost verbatim, except I finished grad school some time ago. Right now as I am writing this I am hiding out in my room.

My advice is, as others have suggested, to seek therapy. I guess I don't understand why you are so adverse to medication. The right medication can make your life a whole lot easier. If I were you, I would do anything to get through the final 3 months of your degree. You've worked so hard to get there. If you really need a break, can you take an academic leave of absence for a semester?

I wish you well and hope everything turns out for you.

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My grandmother on my dad's side was psychotic. I'm horrified of the notion that I could be like her. My dad told me stories of her chasing my grandfather with a knife, rambling about random things, and the strange lucidity she would sometimes posess while other times being near catatonic. Also, my grandfather on my mom's side was mentally disturbed as well but tried to mask it with a heavy dose of alcoholism and spouse abuse

I want help to make sure I don't go too far down the rabbit hole, but I don't want pills. I hate drugs of all types and always have. I don't even like caffeine or alcohol except in extreme moderation. However I have been self medicating with way too many cigarettes. I don't want to be anchored down to medications for the rest of my life, and I don't want side effects. I fully believe if I can just figure out a way to see a therapist without being forced to leave school or start taking medications I will be much better.

I'm torn between the fear of failure/joblessness/massive debt without a means to repay, and the fear of my own loss of sanity.

If your grandmother had access to the treatments, including medication, that we have today her life might have been very different. How sad that she did not have the treatments available that we enjoy today.

Yes you could benefit from therapy but I also encourage you to see a psychiatrist, and based upon a diagnosis, if your doctors suggests medication please consider it. Would you chose to not medicate diabetes or MS? Thyroid or high blood pressure? And just because a person starts a psyche med it does not mean they are on it for life. You need all the treatment, help, and support you can find. Really, diagnosis and treatment is life saving and life altering. I was resistant too for years, I wish I had gotten treatment earlier. Go see a Psychiatrist.

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Thanks for the replies and support. I'm going to contact my medical insurance and see if I can find a therapist in my area. I'm still concerned that me seeking out mental help will show up on my insurance and medical records and somehow come back to haunt me. I'm not really the type to seek out help and like to do everything on my own. Its stupid, but the idea of seeking help almost seems weak to me. I'm going to anyways, but I think I need a therapist that will respect my fiercely independent nature.

As for why I don't like medication, simply put pharmaceutical companies have no desire to help anyone, they just want profit. The side effects of pills are often "fixed" by taking more pills, with more side effects, which in the end means bigger profits for the companies. They have representitives (my brother in fact had this job for a while) that go to doctors and attempt to pursuade them to perscribe their company's pills over competitors and even offer incentives for prescribing their companies medications including but not limited to paid vacations. Many doctors seem to prescribe medications without any genuine concern for their patients and to simply get them out of their hair. Seems like every person I've met who is even slightly not happy is just immidiately thrown a plethora of pills, and not surprsingly the problem isnt fixed just covered up. Psychology is still somewhat of a barbaric field in my eyes, with vague guesses and strongly biased and outdated theories on what constitutes "normal" and "abnormal". We have only really started to look at the chemistry of the brain in the past few decades, and we still don't fully understand it. Therefore, I see it as dangerous and downright immoral to play with the chemistry of the brain when we don't even fully understand it on an academic level. These very same pharmaceutical companies are often the ones to downplay any sort of alternative treatment. The metaphor I think about when I consider meds is its like taking morphine for a stubbed toe. Sure the pain might go away while you are on the drug, but it sure as hell doesn't help that stubbed toe.

I'll admit I have a certain irrational fear of psychiatrists/therapists/psychologists as well. I have a hard time trusting people even in my personal relationships and tend to keep even my closest, best friends at a certain distance. None of them know about 90% of what I have said here with the confidence of the anonymity that the internet provides (I even used a fresh junkmail that was set up at a coffee shop and with false information to sign up for these boards). I have heard friends tell horror stories of wards full of screaming patients but I'll say as a counterpoint that these were wards for addicts. The idea of being locked up and forced medication is probably my biggest fear. I tend to lock myself up, but being under the thumb of another individual is just something I don't know if i could stomach. My grandmother was locked up late in her life, and died in an institution. I never met her and didn't even know this until I got older and started to show signs of instability and my dad felt it necessary to let me know of our family history. I saw several therapists and counselors when I was a young teenager but they always tried to force god on me, (im an atheist), and/or convince me that it was all "just in my head". I'm sure there are doctors/counselors/ect out there that genuinely want to help people, but how common is that? Really? 1 in 10? 1 in 100? And of those, how many quickly become overwhelmed and jaded? Its so much easier to smile and nod then hand over a bunch of pills than to actually try to work through issues.

I talked to my parents and it turns out they've both been to therapists recently. My mom with post traumatic stress from her childhood (abusive father), and my dad was recently put on mood stabilizers.

The voices Ive heard, and the fact I feel as though I know exactly what people are thinking I've just come to accept as part of my life. I do not necessarily think I'm psychic, but I do think the subconscious brain has an ability to read many underlying ques such as scent, body language, and tone of voice to formulate a strong hypothesis as to what the other person is thinking or intending, and then projects itself into reality. Sometimes these are accurate, but more often than not they probably aren't so I just try to ignore them, but they are pervasive and the amount of sensory input from being around any more than just one person at a time is sometimes just too much for me. Its getting worse though, I used to be able to go out with friends and have a good time but I'm not in the same city anymore with friends I actually trust, and feel uncomfortable in any situation with more than one or two people.

Also not looking for a diagnosis or anything. I know its impossible to do over a message board. Ive also been posting in forums since forums existed, and therefore I come across much more organized in thought online than in person thanks to the edit and copy/paste.

Edited by heffington

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Guest Vapourware

RE: treatment. While companies do go and look for profit [obviously because they are business, after all], it's really not as nefarious as you think it is. They don't deliberately make drugs with side effects so you'll buy other drugs to counteract them, because not everyone gets side effects from taking psychs. It's not a 100% guarantee - I think there are plenty of people who take psych meds without any side effects, or with minimal side effects.

Actually, I think there are plenty of people on CB, myself included, that would've ended up in a very bad state if it wasn't for working medication. Meds keeps a lot of us functional and stable, which gives us the opportunity to live independently, have a family, work, study, play hard, etc.

People in the health profession actually do care about how you are; wanting to assist others is often a high reason as to why they enter the field in the first place and the moment they stop caring about others is often the moment they choose to leave the health field. So, I would hazard that the chances of you entering someone who genuinely cares about others is much higher than what you expect.

I don't understand why you think psychology is "barbaric". The line between "normal" and "abnormal" is often drawn in terms of impairment and functionality, and not so much about how well someone sticks to a pre-defined status quo. If something is causing you distress, then something is wrong, no?

Anyways, I hope that you'll be able to find a suitable therapist and get the help you need. Again, if you are diagnosed with anything, that sort of information isn't freely available to anyone. You do have confidentiality.

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You absolutely can get help from your school's health services. Being a danger to oneself or others doesn't mean being angry or confused, or whatever. It means having a plan, and being prepared to put it into action.

Whatever exactly is going on with you, it probably won't start getting better until you get some professional help. Please, please, do so.

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I can only echo what everyone else has already said. You need to get some treatment. Therapy is a good place to start, but also seeing a psychiatrist and getting a diagnosis so you know what is going on with you and what the best treatment is. Personally, after what I have experienced over the last few years, I would not delay on these 2.

Treatments these days are so much better than they were in your grandmother's era. And not everyone will get bad side effects from medication. I, for example, take a med which is well known for causing weight gain but have not gained any weight since going on this med. In fact the only side effect that I get is sleep (which for me is important because I tend to hallucinate a lot more when I am sleep deprived).

Go to the school counsellor, but whatever you do please get some treatment. You do not have to suffer.

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Everyone here can't be wrong, I should definitely get some help. But I'm not really sure how.

When I talked to my parents about it they seemed partially heart broken and partially unable to accept I might not be ok. They kept telling me "no youre fine its just stress, just take a day off" Well it started before grad school, and I've taken many days off, nothing's changed. Afterall Im the first in the family to go to grad school, the first in the family to get a college scholarship, and my parents love to thrust my IQ in my face telling me I should be doing a lot better. Basically they love me so much they don't really want to accept it, or see that anything might be wrong with me. I went from being the black sheep of the family before college to being the golden child after graduation and getting accepted to grad school, and now back to black sheep. I did get the insurance information I needed from them though.

As to why i don't trust medications its because of the sheer amount of side effects, the need for profit from a business that claims to be there only to help, and family and friends who have experienced permanent damage from pharmaceutical side effects. I'll admit I'm a bit paranoid, maybe even a little delusional, but I can't deny this evidence and first hand experience. Despite this I decided to look for help.

However today when I was going to call and get the list of doctors covered by my insurance I just couldn't do it. It was hard enough admitting I might have some sort of mental health issue to my parents, but to complete strangers thats a whole different ball game. Especially to a soulless insurance company who's only concern is making sure they don't have to give you any money while charging you every month for the possibility that you may need money (but won't get it from them). And the fear that they will lock me up and throw away the key is just overwhelming. I've been misunderstood, demonized, and just generally put down as a strange person/weirdo/"typical crazy artist" most of my life, probably due to my conservative environment in the south. And I've always been a bit suspicious of doctors and health professionals regardless of their field. Hospitals have always freaked me out, and mental hospitals even more so. I don't trust medications either, so I'm not sure what kind of help they could really offer anyways other than forcing meds down my throat that I don't want.

I definitely can't go to the school counselor I know that. This is a large conservative school, nearby schools have had school shootings, they do not want to risk any sort of possible black smear on their name and the best option would be to ask me to leave. This is why the "if (the school) feels you may be a danger to yourself or others you will be asked to withdraw from classes" on the front page, IN BOLD. I just can't risk that with only a couple months left. Then again, I'm starting to think it may be riskier NOT getting help sooner rather than later.

And my insurance only covers me while I'm in school.... so even if I do find a doctor and get prescribed meds chances are I won't be able to afford it for very long at all.

On the other hand, if I can just stabalize now, graduate, and get a job, I should be able to find help that I can actually pay for and not be at the mercy of the state, something that horrifies me even more than just hospitals and medications. Though, stability would be the issue to begin with.

Basically there is a war of ideas going on in my head right now, part of me wants help, if i didn't I wouldn't even be on these forums. But the other part of me keeps screaming, "NO THEY WILL LOCK YOU UP! FREEDOM! FREEDOM! FREEDOM!" and I just sort of sit here doing nothing, unable to decide and not really sure what to do or how to go about it.

My friends (and even a few enemies) growing up refer to me as wise, wise beyond my years, wise like an old tree, and my favorite: "if you were a DnD character you would have a wisdom of 18." But I feel anything but wise right now, I feel like I can't trust myself or my own decision making. Maybe thats wisdom in and of itself.

I also think I need to get the hell out of the south.

Edited by heffington

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hon, no body is going to lock you up!!!

I know people who go to the ER and beg to go inpatient and there is no bed for them

you have to be an imminent threat to yourself (suicide) or to others (violence) to get locked up involuntarily

or extremely psychotic and out of touch with reality which you are not

by the way, the federal law has changed and you can stay on your parents insurance until age 26, you do not need to be in school

so you can let go of that exscuse

use the insurance to find a doctor

it would be nice if you could find a referral.....I am not sure what city you are in

at least go talk to a doctor

perhaps nami.... www.nami.org they might help you find a doctor

there web site is also informational and might help you

please go talk with a doctor

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Thanks. I didn't know that about the new law, I was under the impression that it only covered those in school.

What exactly does a referral do for me? Do you mean a GP's referral to go see a psychologist/therapist, or a referral from someone on here who can vouch for a good doctor? I've heard of people's GP giving referrals but how exactly would a GP even know what a good pdoc is? They are two very different fields. Don't know if I'd want a referral from another doctor, seems to me they probably get incentives for recommending each other.

I don't actually have a GP, haven't even been to a doctor in about 3 years. At the time I had a really bad infection and refused to go the doctor until I was in such bad shape I was sent to the ER directly from the GP's office.Which being reminded of that incident ironically is now making me reconsider my fear of seeking help now, as I can definitely see a parallel. I don't trust medical professionals in the least, most are in it for the money. I've only ever met one doctor that genuinely seemed to care for his patients, and he was a pediatrician. But I guess thats really not significant at this point, my current methods haven't been working, and things are getting worse, so I'm going to have to get outside help whether I like it or not.

Do I have the right to refuse medication if I go see a psychologist? Do they have a right to have me committed If I refuse? How does all that work exactly?

I really want treatment that is free of medications, is it even possible to request this? Everything I read points to them just handing you a bunch of pills and telling you to see them in a month, and if you don't take them they won't even talk to you.

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Do I have the right to refuse medication if I go see a psychologist? Do they have a right to have me committed If I refuse? How does all that work exactly?

A psychologist is a therapist, usually with an MA or PhD (correct me if I'm wrong) and cannot prescribe. A psychiatrist has an MD and can prescribe.

You can be committed for being a danger to yourself, others, or unable to take care of yourself due to mental illness. You don't meet any of them. They can suggest hospitalization, but cannot force you to go.

I'm sorry your school isn't understanding at all. You seem really nervous about seeing someone for help. They won't judge you, its their job to help you.

If it makes you feel any better, I'm on disability (so, government) and they do not have access to my medical files without my consent. Plenty of "normal" people see therapists, its not going to haunt you.

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Presumably, a GP in any given community will have had contact with, even collaborated with, specialists in that community. So he or she should be in a good position to make recommendations. Doctors do not pay one another for referrals. I don't know where your ideas about health care come from, but they aren't so much related to reality. Even if you're completely correct, and all doctors are solely financially motivated, that has nothing to do with their level of skill. I neither know nor care what my pdoc's motivation for her work is.

A psychologist cannot prescribe medication. Psychologists do therapy, not meds.

Should you eventually see an MD, he or she cannot force you to take medication. Not taking medication is not grounds for hospitalizing you. To be hospitalized, you have to be a danger to yourself or others, in a very direct way. Your refusing medication may not be in your best interests, but it does not constitute the kind of danger to yourself for which you could be hospitalized. Telling your doctor you're planning to jump off a bridge when you leave his or her office could very likely get you hospitalized.

Generally, psychologists handle therapy, and psychiatrists handle meds. It's probably true that if you're refusing medication, a psychiatrist really doesn't have much to offer you.

Where is your resistance to medication coming from? The kind of paranoid delusions you're describing usually requires medication to remit. So you'd really be well advised to reconsider that stance.

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Thanks for the clarification between psychiatrists/psychologists and medication/hospitalization.

As for the reason I'm so resistant to the idea of taking meds or trusting doctors, lots of reasons, most of which come from watching friends and family be mutilated by them. My best friend in middle school who now has permanent tremors and broken speech patterns that were the result of pharms. Several friends who have died or nearly died from both prescribed and recreational drug use. One of my college professors who was given the wrong medication, which caused brain damage and watching him go from the most articulate professor at the school to being nearly incapable of forming a full sentence. Grandfather who died from blood thinners (he had a minor fall, but the blood thinners were so strong that he died from internal bleeding). My father and aunt who were given experimental drugs as children because they were poor and that was the cheapest way to get medication, which then turned their teeth black permanently. The fact its a lot easier for a doctor to throw you pills than to actually try to cure you or figure out what is genuinely wrong. Fear of side effects that are "fixed" by more pills with more side effects that more pills are needed to "fix". The fact that some drugs once you start taking you can't stop without severe repercussions. The fact that we don't fully understand the brain yet but don't think twice about playing with its chemistry. Having my personality altered and my creativity stifled.The fact that every few months there is a new class action lawsuit against a drug company for severe side effects caused by their drugs. And last but not least the fact that pharmaceutical companies benefit more from you having to take their pills for the rest of your life than actually curing you in any sense of the word. There are more, but those are the most concrete.

Edited by heffington

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Heffington, I only have time to read your first post so I don't know what everyone has said or your replies. I want to let you know that your experience is very similar to mine, minus school. I am very paranoid. I could swear people talk about me and laugh at me and sometimes try to sabatoge anything I try to do. I always go around the block when I get home in case someone is following me. When I was a teen, I did things and got mad and I didn't even remember doing it. I hole up in my room all day.

I can't concentrate on what people or saying. Sometimes, even things I'm saying. I'll stop in the middle of a sentence and not remember what I was talking about. I can't read hardly at all anymore because I can't focus. I also worry because 2 of my uncles were schizophrenic. Please don't give up hope. And please get help. There are so many meds that can help you have a better life.

Edited by Dusk

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Thanks for the clarification between psychiatrists/psychologists and medication/hospitalization.

As for the reason I'm so resistant to the idea of taking meds or trusting doctors, lots of reasons, most of which come from watching friends and family be mutilated by them. My best friend in middle school who now has permanent tremors and broken speech patterns that were the result of pharms. Several friends who have died or nearly died from both prescribed and recreational drug use. One of my college professors who was given the wrong medication, which caused brain damage and watching him go from the most articulate professor at the school to being nearly incapable of forming a full sentence. Grandfather who died from blood thinners (he had a minor fall, but the blood thinners were so strong that he died from internal bleeding). My father and aunt who were given experimental drugs as children because they were poor and that was the cheapest way to get medication, which then turned their teeth black permanently. The fact its a lot easier for a doctor to throw you pills than to actually try to cure you or figure out what is genuinely wrong. Fear of side effects that are "fixed" by more pills with more side effects that more pills are needed to "fix". The fact that some drugs once you start taking you can't stop without severe repercussions. The fact that we don't fully understand the brain yet but don't think twice about playing with its chemistry. Having my personality altered and my creativity stifled.The fact that every few months there is a new class action lawsuit against a drug company for severe side effects caused by their drugs. And last but not least the fact that pharmaceutical companies benefit more from you having to take their pills for the rest of your life than actually curing you in any sense of the word. There are more, but those are the most concrete.

You do realize this is a very pro-meds place? You're not going to find a lot of support for these opinions here. Just saying.

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I agree with SS. You are most welcome here, but you aren't going to find a lot of people that agree you can therapize or think your way out of your symptoms, completely. It just... doesn't work like that.

Anna

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I didn't read your opinion on drugs until just now. You may find that there are a lot of people here who will be offended/scared by reading your post. I've had a hard time finding a med that helps me much (it's usually much easier for most people) but I certainly have never been harmed by them and I'm willing to take whatever they think will help.

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And last but not least the fact that pharmaceutical companies benefit more from you having to take their pills for the rest of your life than actually curing you in any sense of the word.

Personally, I have bipolar disorder. THERE IS NO CURE FOR IT. I am going to be on medication/s for the rest of my life. Some of them have weird-ass side effects, and those are the ones that I have to decide if I want to continue to take or if I need to find a different medication that can do the same job but not have side effects.

You say that you're afraid of admitting that you need help, but you're already making progress in that department-you're talking to us. You told your family. Telling your family is worse than telling some stranger whose job it is to try and help you, believe me. You fear for your freedom, but the life you're describing is not free. You can't bring yourself to get the tires on your bike fixed. You lock yourself up in your room. You're losing your ability to relate to other people-this is not conducive to getting, or holding, a job, by the way.

Medication saved my life, first, and then it changed the entire landscape of my life in ways I never dreamed possible. I didn't lose my creativity. I can't be creative when my head is full of misfiring chemicals. Figuring out what meds you need can be quite a task, but when you find them, you'll know. You will feel like yourself, nothing more-and nothing less.

Good luck to you. I suggest you print out your first post on this thread and take it with you when you go to see a doctor or therapist. It'll be much easier than organizing what you need to say spontaneously.

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