Sunday afternoon, after a visit by a relative who likes to tease, I made what I thought was an innocuous statement and that led to her retreating and withdrawing into her room. I know she doesn't like to be teased but this hit her harder than that. I saw a look in her eyes and it scared the hell out of me. Dull, listless, without hope. I had seen that same look when someone I was very close to attempted suicide. Anyone familiar with this "look" knows the chills it sends down your spine.
I went in and sat with her for awhile. Just sitting there....then I asked her how bad is it? She said "Dad, its real bad. I have had thoughts of hurting myself and even killing myself."
I just sat there. My "Operations" mind combined with a little experience in this soon led to me asking her if she could commit to a no harm contract or if we needed to go to the hospital. Initially she wasn't sure. She shared with me that things had really gone downhill quickly in school. The boy that broke up with her last spring has been downright hateful...saying things like "I wish you were dead, I really do." Because of her passive personality she feels ostracized. She shared that she hadn't been completely forthcoming with her therapist or case manager because she didn't want to make them feel "let down." Understandable....and frankly worthy of its own entry.
She shared that she struggled with therapy and case management. That DBT is pushed so hard it doesn't allow her to struggle or the "Your not trying hard enough" starts getting put out there. Again....worthy of its own entry.
We *MUST* be careful when we begin to talk treatment. We must be assured that it doesn't come across as if it doesn't work its because your not "trying hard enough" or "doing it right."
Well excuse the **** out of me. Wasn't aware you had walked in my shoes and fully know the depth of my pain and experiences but thank you very much for basically assuring me that I'll fail.
To some extent that is how she feels. Like a failure. Regardless of the fact we don't fully have her diagnosis yet. Regardless of the fact that treatment doesn't always work immediately and if it doesn't take then we need to give the patient a chance to regroup, try again or YES even try something different. We don't do a round of Chemo on a Cancer patient and if it succeeds 99% of the time we don't get on the other 1%. Same thing here...only we are now dealing with the organ we know the least about- the brain.
There is no "one way" or magic formula to treat mental illness. Until we embrace that we do a dis service to many people. People trying to help actually create a stigma.
So...if you were bullied, treatment wasn't working and your own pain was so deep you didn't feel like you could share it...well what does that leave?
What does that leave?
We know the answer to the question we just haven't learned how to deal with the question itself.
We wanted residential treatment in May but were denied. Insurance wanted all Outpatient services exhausted...I just hope "till exhausted" outlives hopelessness.