Friday, April 01, 2011

Don't plan to go back

The last three weeks or so have been excruciatingly difficult. Anxiety, stress and depression have left me on the brink of suicide yet again, and no one seems to have a clue. I've hidden it well, as I always do. My daughter is the only one that has ever noticed when I'm not well, and since she's not around every day, it's easier to hide away from the world and suffer...alone.

My therapist showed some concern on Monday, especially since I was in tears for pretty much the entire appointment, but I don't think she comprehends just how quickly I've deteriorated and just how consumed with death my focus has become. I think she was more concerned by the fact that I told her I would not be seeing the pdoc I had been going to at that facility again and that I'm basically unmedicated at the moment.

I had seen the pdoc last week and told him the Amitriptyline he had me on, with a raise in dosage the prior month, was not doing anything and I was becoming increasingly more depressed. As he has done every other visit, he asks if I'm taking "the Seroquel". Considering the fact that he himself has never prescribed it to me, and I have repeatedly told him how much of a poison I believe that drug is, why would I be taking it?

Apparently he seems to believe (just like every other fucking pdoc I've ever seen) that it is the greatest fucking drug on the face of the planet, a wonder drug, the magic cure-all. Doesn't matter which mental illness you have, or how mild or severe your symptoms may be. Doesn't matter what horrible side effects you may suffer from taking it. Hell, sometimes I think to them it doesn't even matter if you have a mental illness, it's such an amazing drug that EVERYONE (except them) should be taking it. So when I told him, no, I wasn't taking it, he seemed a little exasperated by that.

Rather than add something to the Amitriptyline, or try something different, he spent half an hour asking me questions. Is there anyone in my life I can talk to about my problems? Why not? What do I do during the day to fill my time? What do I want out of life? I got the impression that he was trying to drive home the fact that I'm to blame for my depression and anxiety, and not solely because I won't take "the Seroquel". He had me in tears after the first two questions because I knew what was happening.

That night, exasperated myself, I took "the fucking Seroquel", about 75 mgs worth, that I still have from my last pdoc and it was one of the worst nights of my life. An hour after taking it, I woke from the first nightmare, which didn't end once I was awake. I was paralyzed in bed because I could swear I heard footsteps on the carpeting in my bedroom and was afraid someone was in my room. After what seemed like 20 minutes, but was probably only 4 or 5, I convinced myself to run out of the room. If someone was there, I'd either knock them over, or they would just grab me & hopefully kill me. Of course, no one was in my room, it was just a hallucination.

Fell back asleep, only to wake an hour later from another terrifying nightmare. After that, I woke every half hour in sheer terror. I had to leave the lights on because I was so afraid. I wanted to just stay awake, but couldn't fight off the sedating effects of the drug. The severe dry mouth and swollen nasal passages (other wonderful side effects) at least kept me from being able to scream each time I woke up so I didn't scare the living shit out of the old people.

On the upside, the only side the pdocs ever want to acknowledge even if it is only minuscule compared to the down side, the few minutes I got of actual sleep felt really good. The drug-induced coma Seroquel produces is the closest thing to real sleep I've had since I stopped taking it, which I think was sometime in the fall of last maybe 6 months ago? I honestly don't know. I had hoped that after being off it long enough, I'd be able to fall asleep, stay asleep and get as deep of sleep as I used to, before I ever took the stuff. But unfortunately, one of the side effects no one is willing to acknowledge, is that it permanently destroys your brain's ability to control sleep on its own. Kind of like when a person takes melatonin long term and as a result, their body no longer produces it on its own. The drug hijacks your brain chemistry and then your brain can never again function as it should without the drug.

Anyway, it wasn't my intention to turn this into another "I hate Seroquel" rant. I don't plan to go back to that pdoc, plain and simple. I'm trying not to rule out ever seeing another pdoc again, but given my past history with them and the number of medications I've already been on, it's hard to convince myself I might find one that is helpful.

Despite not wanting to leave my bed, let alone the house, I did attend a DBSA meeting two weeks ago. It is held in what I thought was an outpatient only facility because the front door has never been locked when I go there. People seem to be able to freely come and go. Because I have been doing so poorly, I had actually tossed around the idea of possibly doing the partial hospital program there. The sign at the front desk said that if no one was there, go to the nurse's station in the back if you wanted to speak to someone. It wasn't until I went into the back that I realized it was an actual nurse's station...for an inpatient ward. I could see into a couple of the patient rooms and saw the beds. I then noticed that none of the people in the tv room behind me were wearing shoes.

As soon as I realized it was an inpatient ward, panic set in, but I figured if I just turned around and ran, they'd get suspicious and have some way of locking the front door so I couldn't escape. I managed to ask what number I needed to call to inquire about the partial program, and they asked what I wanted to know. Trying not to show just how panicked I was, I asked if I would need to be referred by a pdoc or therapist to join it. That's when one of them said, all too enthusiastically, that he could do an assessment right now and reached for a clipboard. At that point, I succumbed to the panic and said no, turned around and made as hasty as an exit I could manage without actually running.

I've never gone into any facility for a mental health assessment and been allowed to leave, never. I've always been admitted, usually involuntarily, to the inpatient unit. Doesn't matter if I don't say anything about having a suicide plan, which is basically what they need to legally hold you against your will, or even if I specifically tell them I don't have one, they will falsify the admit form to say I told them of my intent to kill myself and therefore I'm a danger to myself and they have the grounds to lock me up. As much as I try to rationalize things and say, well maybe I am crazy and I'm hearing one conversation and they're hearing a completely different one, I know that's not the case. I think they instruct their intake staff that if a person has insurance and there's a bed available, lock 'em up. How could anyone prove otherwise? It's the "crazy" person's word against that of a mental health "professional".

So, right now, I guess I'm kind of at a loss and don't know what the heck to do. I don't know if it's safe to see my therapist on Monday cuz I'm worried she might call 911 on me, but if I call and tell her I'm not coming in, I'm worried she'll just call 911 anyway. Maybe I should just take myself to the hospital and say I'm turning myself in, and spend a week or two locked in prison, which is what it would be like for me cuz I don't think I need that level of care.


Blogger Michael said...

Oh, Sid. I bid you peace.

11:11 PM, April 03, 2011  

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