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1/6/14 1:14 P

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Larissa, that is great. Glad to hear that.

Lottie
Eastern North Carolina


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1/5/14 8:59 P

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I just started last month with a new therapist. I've had the same psych for about 3 years now. He's pretty good with my meds... he doesn't want me to be on all these kinds of drugs. I'm on a small cocktail and I'm doing good with that.

~Rissa, AKA Diane

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1/5/14 5:30 P

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Hope your son gets the help he needs. It can be awful trying at times. I was diagnosed when I was 21 and am with a great doctor. She can read me like a book. I can't pull anything over on her.

Lottie
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1/4/14 4:20 P

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My son lived the first nineteen years of his life with a mother with several mental health diagnoses. Today the poor kid (soon to be 21) called me from Japan to let me know that he thinks he is sick and is going to see a base counselor. He says he is easily irritated, almost to the point of having a physical altercation with a corporal. Here I sit, 7,000 miles away praying that he can hold it together until he sees a professional. He is fearful of what others will think when he goes to a counselor! My prayer is that he is strong enough to seek help on his own and I encouraged him with words much the same. I always thought by being so open about my illness, if my children were given this cross to bear, they would feel no shame. I guess I was wrong. emoticon

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1/4/14 4:13 P

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Good luck, Sprink. I think you've got something with having your own team. I have much the same, but my team members keep retiring or going on maternity leave. Oh well, keep moving forward.

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1/4/14 4:02 P

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I hate how everyone assumes that if we are having a rough time that we must be off our meds. They don't understand that sometimes they don't work.

~Rissa, AKA Diane

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1/4/14 2:08 P

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It is a shame that every time something bad happens, we (bipolars) get the blame. I wish we had something where I live (besides NAMI) that we can go and express ourselves.

Lottie
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1/4/14 3:18 A

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If we can do one thing to help ourselves it is to assemble your own medical and psych teams and through research or the referral of trusted friends keep trying new drs and facilities until we are happy with our support system in its totality. Real change in my life didn't start until May 2012 when I decided to champion my own cause by assembling such a team. I've made changes during this time, and will continue to do so whenever necessary. Monday in fact, I am going to challenge my new psych to a re-evaluation of all of my diagnoses because I don't quite think he totally understands the mental health challenges that I face. Not his fault, but I need to bring him up to speed and see where we go. He's only been on my team for 4 months, in which time many things took a downturn. Time to put my cards on the table and demand a tune-up (nicely). Have a great weekend!

"Sprink"

I really don't worry about tomorrow anymore, because Today is enough for me. God bless you and yours always - "Sprink"

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1/3/14 11:56 P

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Thank you for pointing that out. I agree, I have made generalizations that are unnecessary. I have learned through my own experience and that of my daughter that there are good and not so good facilities. Shopping around isn't such a bad idea when it comes to our own mental health, we would not put an elderly individual into a health care situation without getting references and touring facilities, so what's wrong with putting us first in the equation?

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1/3/14 9:49 P

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As a former mental health nurse and a frequent but former patient, I can relate well to this subject. One cannot generalize about the facilities in an entire state just from having been in one institution. I have been in wonderful and terrible hospitals here in my home state of Illinois. There are avenues to seek regress, always posted within the facility.

I finally found good hospitals for when I need to stay I one, and I put it in my Mental Health Declaration (A Legal Document) that I want to go to only those hospitals. Having an advocate also helps as well, because when I am sick, I do not always express myself well. Some folks even check out hospitals in the area ahead of time, but I don't know that I would go that far.

Having a good psychiatrist who is associated with a good hospital is always a good idea as well. That way, the hospital can just call the psychiatrist, no matter what time of day you are admitted, and get you your proper medication.

It's all about taking a little time ahead of time, learning the ropes of how the hospitals work, and which are the better of the local facilities. Talk to your peers, get local feedback. Many get this from their local chapter of a national organization, such as NAMI, or DBSA, both excellent support groups.

Aylamay

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1/3/14 6:21 P

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I'm not implying that Michigan is perfect in any way, but a lot of the way we are treated is still the stigma developed generations ago. I had an uncle that spent from age 16 to age 63 (death) in an institution. Now, I think he would have been diagnosed as autistic and given all sorts of help to function. Many of my family self-medicated with alcohol and who knows what else. All of this because no one was allowed to discuss the issues. The scary part is that some people with these far outdated opinions are working in the mental health field. I wish I could say it's not their fault, but closed minded is hard to change.

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1/3/14 6:14 P

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I know there are problems in Oregon, too. My friends father in law had a complete mental breakdown, threatening to hurt people, abused my friend's daughter, and all sorts of horrible stuff. They let him go from the hospital into foster care. They were lucky he didn't hurt her. They finally convinced the hospital to take him back. They just drugged him up and sent him home. It's horrible how we are treated.

~Rissa, AKA Diane

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1/3/14 5:20 P

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Wow, I sort of wish I could travel to Florida ... first I would suck up all the knowledge I get from my own experience in May, and then start a rebellion against the corporations running the crisis center! In reality, there must be some sort of way to make people aware that mental illness is no longer about hiding us away.

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1/3/14 5:10 P

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I don't know if they have anything like that here in Florida. The mental health services here suck. When I go into the crisis center (hospital) they don't have group, they don't talk to the doctors if you get there after 3pm and then you are stuck until the next day with no meds. Including sleeping meds, so if you have trouble sleeping, you are screwed. The nurses argue with the patients, it's got severe cases and not so severe cases. I know one guy snuck in pot and they don't check your pockets when you go in. This one guy had a cell phone for 2 days until he ran out of battery and asked to charge it. This is a place where no cell phones are allowed on the unit. Just shoddy here. It needs a lot of help.

~Rissa, AKA Diane

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1/3/14 4:53 P

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I was approached today by someone on my mental health team to see if I would be interested in visiting the state capitol in May for Mental Health Awareness. People go in front of legislatures and tell their own story. I'm so excited and honored to be invited to such an event. Do you know of anything like this near you that you might be able to participate in???

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