Last week, one of my friends was committed. It turned to to be totally voluntary and she’s out now, but the two people making the announcement about it were very thoughtless in their word presentation. One person said that my friend was asking for prayers ((because)) Satan was messing with her head, while the other said that my friend was ‘fighting for her life’. And then both of them were deleting comments and ignoring people making ‘angry’ comments when both of them had written highly inflammatory comments that scared the bulk of said person’s friends to death. Like, you don’t say someone is fighting for their life unless they’re dying, and more so when that person had expressed concerns for their actual physical safety.
The whole thing ended up a big nasty mess with a lot of people thinking that our friend had been committed against her will — because there was absolutely no consideration taken for the fact that most of my friend’s friends are neurodivergent like herself. I know here amongst the Bipolaratti and friends, we care deeply about our community, even the ones we might not like or be friends with. I was proud of everyone for the handling of Ulla’s death; it was caring and sensitive and above all empathetic. If those two people had actually taken a second to think about what they were saying and how they were handling it, it would have gone a lot way towards assuaging fears. In the end, it took one of our mutuals who runs a bit more to the NT side of life calling our friend at her care centre and confirming a few things, and the two of us disseminating it to her wider friend-base. I hope to be able to catch up with my friend soon, but I told her to drop me a line back when *she* felt like chatting about it. I’ll probably even apologise for the furious response I wrote before I had the facts, if only for how it could possibly discomfit her and her recovery.
What do you guys think? Have you had to deal with this sort of thing before, either as the patient or a friend? I’ve never been committed and will fight tooth and nail to because of stupid reasons, like not being able to knit or game, or losing my current daily blog posting streaks — 7 years on one, 3 and a half on another, and a few months on the public one. These are my self-care things, and sitting on my thumbs socialising when I’m massively introverted would not do good things for my personal healing and sanity. But I would hope that if I did end up having to go in-patient that my husband would be clear and open about it with my friends and family. But then, I don’t care who knows I have Bipolar or how it affects me, so.
I’ve never been committed and like you cling to my self-care activities, believing they would be more therapeutic than the psychiatric ward. That does not mean that being committed, or volunteering to go to hospital for awhile, is not potentially positive and beneficial.
I do remember one time though I had a bad reaction to a med, big time vertigo, so I could barely cope, couldn’t even get to the car, so we called the ambulance. I couldn’t even change first and I was in my psychedelic pj’s (which I affectionately call my bipolar pajamas). We are in a small town hospital. A bunch of gravol and a few hours later I was fine.
But I ‘heard’ later that someone wondered how I was doing? How did ‘someone’ know I was there? Like you, I don’t mind who knows that I am bipolar but somehow if we are in hospital we feel vulnerable enough without thinking that others are talking about us.
I’ve actually never been inpatient in a hospital outside of my own birth. Combine that with a terminally ill (step)parent and it holding my three biggest anxiety triggers (light, noise, people), and I tend to avoid them on general purpose. But yeah, were there a real need, I’d definitely go for it, especially since you don’t have to worry about paying for getting an ambulance ride in the UK!
The last time I had dizziness bad enough that I legit had to get to a doctor… well, both times were in the Air Force a couple of months apart. The first time I got put on meclazine and ended up sleeping for a few days. I don’t remember what I was given the second time, just that I had to get a very grudging ride from my supervisor. I did mention that I should see the doc to my friend E, as she works reception, so she’ll probably bother me sometimes next week to get in and get taken care of.