Friday, December 9, 2011

Twitter Psych Ward

[Caution: Potential Triggers]

I've never been hospitalized.

I had a councilor this year who advised me if I was having problems as severe as I've described, going to the ER and telling them I am going to kill myself will get me psychiatric care in a hurry. I was horrified. I wanted a psychiatrist to review my medications because SSRI's had only made the urge to self harm and want to die infinitely worse. Regardless, something inside my head screamed "danger!". When my doctor threatened hospitalization after learning of my self harm and suicidal thoughts I begged her to let me try again. I kept telling myself it was just the depression and a poor medication match. The sickness and side effects cause all of my woes is my story & I'm sticking to it. Sort of a fake it till you make it type of thing. I slaved at ignoring the noise in my head.

I've admitted many times that I want to die. I don't want to live. I am not going to kill myself. It doesn't matter how numb my hands go, how many times I have to rub my wrists along the hallway walls to the bathroom floor where I have laid crying wishing for the strength to just give in and slice.

I can't die.

I wish I could cut deep enough that, a couple days laid up immobile for risk of a wound splitting open again, isn't enough. I can't. I cannot let this disorder/disease/fucked-up-ed-ness take away the chance that I may someday have regular human contact and real relationships. I want to work again, chase my passions, be sexually active FFS! I don't really want to do any of those things but I remember wanting those things. I have brief memories of having those things. "The Experts" keep telling me this will get better. I have to believe them.

Suicide and Support

I've lost friends to suicide. Friends of friends. I've worked for families that have lost kin to suicide. I can't do that to my family. Even if it is guilt keeping me alive at times at least its something. I've tried crisis center phone numbers but they are not for me. Something else does help though, the Twitter Psych Ward. I have found a network of people, students, professionals, moms, dads, mentals, non mentals, doctors, patients, who have been able to provide the best support I could of imagined. They are never here and they are always there. Well, someone is and if not, I just read up on a timeline and feel a deep connect with those who go through similar pain. I truly don't ever have to feel alone. It's almost alarming how "dependant" I am on twitter for socialization but for now its something. Something is better than nothing, right? I truly am so very greatful for all the friends I've made online. Thank you.

But is that really safe?

I'm not disillusioned into thinking talking to "strangers" [friends] online is a proper substitute for psychiatric care. On the days when I can't get out of bed because that would cause me to have to breathe more and it hurts to breathe... on those days I'm not alone with my thoughts and that IS safe(r). I've read about many experiences of being hospitalized for episodes that pale in comparison to some of my lows. That scares the hell out of me when I think about my lowest lows. How did I survive? I do survive and I'm proud of that.

But what if...

If my therapist and psychiatrist ever have a chat and agree to tag team me into voluntary hospitalization then I will go. That is "the line" to cross so to speak. For now, they trust me at home and I'm doing okay. I'm still struggling and there are times I wonder how I ever used to take care of myself but I have my independence. That is my constant. I hang on to that when all I can do is hate myself. That, and my twitter folk.

Relevant link:

International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP)


  1. Well said & very well done. It requires courage. Which I have as well. Good going. I'm treading water till I'm back in DBT. You express yourself well. I'm v glad to have found you. Cheers. Bye for now.

  2. Thank you for your comment. I'm happy we've crossed paths as well. Now that I follow you on twitter hopefully some of your DBT learning's can trickle down on me!

    - Leslie

  3. I never used Twitter (because I didn't understand how to use it) until this year and I have many fellow mentalist contacts of all backgrounds. Now I am addicted to it. I live on my own and the evenings can be especially lonely, particularly when I am avoiding going out so that I don't drink alcohol. #twitterpsychward helps me know I am not alone and there is always someone, whatever time of day to give an encouraging comment or ask you how you are, without being patronising or telling you off for your feelings like family and friends can sometimes do.

  4. Thank you so much for reading & commenting. Support can be challenging when feelings of isolation and loneliness dominate my mind. Twitter gets past that for me. Happily, you as well it seems. Thanks for sharing your story. See you on the #TwitterPsychWard ;-)

    - Leslie

  5. So honest and heart wrenching. I have been admitted to psych wards twice and they are scary places, I think they even made my depression at the time worse. You sound like you have a lot of strength, you should thank yourself for that :)

  6. I had a couple psych ward experiences and they are awful. I only really tried to kill myself once and I failed. I took 64 extra strength tylonel and thought I'd die but my mom found me and took me to the hospital. My liver shut down and I almost had to get a transplant. It was the most painful experience of my entire life. I am glad to be alive though. I was in the pysch ward for 2 weeks afterwards and it was really scary and I just wanted to go home. Sometimes the best people to talk to are people you don't know very well. It's easier to not feel judged somehow. Self harm seems to work so well sometimes that it's hard to completely quit. I think it's about control for me. Why did you do it? Stay strong beautiful!