Hospitalization has been recommended

Eagle3

MyPTSD Pro
My T, who I love BECAUSE he's not one to push hospitalization or medication, has decided that in my current condition, a hospital stay wouldn't be a bad idea, just to get me out of the HellHouse of Triggers for a while. I'm not sure what to think. I agree I need some time somewhere else, but I also know that medication is a really bad idea for me, mainstream doctors and I clash really hard (medical trauma), and new places are horrible for my hypervigilance. Anything sounding like Christianity or Judeo-Christian religious content and CBT is a really bad trigger, so groups and therapy will be rough in those kinds of places. I know I can't stay in this house much longer and be safe, but hospitalization in the middle of a pandemic?? What does that even look like? Not to mention the fact that I have no money, and time off from work would be a bit of a problem. He did say it would be better for me to walk in than for him to make the call, which I totally agree with, but I guess I'm needing some reassurance that the whole experience won't exacerbate every trigger I have (Autistic on top of PTSD). Any body have any advice, or words of experience? I don't even know what facility I'd end up in or for how long...insurance would have to dictate that.
 

Sideways

Sponsor
I don't even know what facility I'd end up in or for how long
You should ask. Email if that's easier. Any questions you have: which facility (so, whether it's connected to a medical facility that's treating Covid patients or not), what covid restrictions they have in place, will you be required to attend groups (most often this is the call of the individual psychiatrist - insurance often requires group attendance, but they often get round this by the doctor simply confirming in your chart why you personally don't have to attend), is there a likely increase in meds or can this be discussed once you're admitted - anything at all.

Hospitals aren't places we go to feel good (at least, not in the context of depression or ptsd). They're places we go when the short term priority is safety, and perhaps stabilising. It's a good thing you don't want to be there - but that doesn't mean it wouldn't be helpful.

Can you sleep on it? Sometimes there's a heightened degree of anxiety associated with being told by a doctor you trust "I think you need hospital". That's a distressing to be told, and letting some of that initial distress run its course makes it a little easier.

Hope something there is helpful. Either way, stay safe. Your pdoc sounds like they have your best interests in mind.
 

Eagle3

MyPTSD Pro
He's letting me hold off on going, with daily check-in's for now. I have severe reactions to most psychiatric medications, so I'm dreading having that conversation with a staff shrink. The whole reason this is a possibility is because I can't try to sleep without my brain going bad places on me. I'm scheduled for a sleep study this weekend which is why I'm trying to avoid hospitalization for a few days. This will be my first psych hospitalization, and I'm really scared about it. My family doesn't believe in mental health issues, so I've never had to deal with any of this.
 

Sideways

Sponsor
For some of us, acute admissions never stop being scary. No matter how many dozen times you've done it - even knowing all the staff and all the ins and outs of how the whole place ticks - it's still scary. And I can understand the medication issue - particularly a fear of "will I really genuinely be allowed to say no?"

If you can hold out till after your sleep study? Great. Do that, so that you have that information ahead of time (and don't have to reschedule it!).

What I can say is that for a lot of facilities (not all - I've done time in a couple of very nasty public/free psych wards, purely for safety reasons - doesn't sound like the kind of place your pdoc has in mind though) is that most preconceptions about it are way off for people being admitted for their first time.

For example, group therapy in acute settings? Is very rarely the psycho-education experience you have as an outpatient or day patient, or with private providers. It serves a much different function in the acute setting:
1) helping draw patients out of their own, dark headspace for a while;
2) building healthy structure into the day (biorhythm stuff) at a manageable level; and
3) rebuilding stamina (not just physical, but cognitive and emotional), again at a manageable level.

So in that regard? You find yourself being sent along to all manner of harmless, (often seemingly pointless) groups like reflexology, art class, drumming sessions, walking groups, board game groups, learn how to knit groups, meet the therapy dog groups, etc. The acute setting isn't the time to be drilling cbt stuff into patients, so psycho-education is often part of the group therapy options, but IME, only a very small (usually optional) part.

A lot of people I know don't have their family's support when they go into hospital, and often haven't wanted to tell their employer. "I'm doing a health retreat, and it's a private/personal thing", or variations on that? Is a very common way a lot of patients deal with that with work or family.

What I have always found, when I've been in hospital, is that (1) I'm safe, no matter what, and that all by itself helps readjust my mood; and (2) I'm among some of the least judgmental people on the face of the earth.

It's not a small decision. But it's not necessarily a bad thing, if you need some help hitting reset on where your headspace is day in/day out atm. Very few people like acute hospital admissions. But a lot of people benefit from them at some point in their recovery.
 

Eagle3

MyPTSD Pro
Thanks for your thoughtful replies. They really helped. I'm managing to stay out for now, but continuing the daily check-in's with my T. It's scary to think that hospitalization is an option now, but since my Dad just went in for medical issues, it seems a little easier. This is the first time someone has ever cared enough to take an ACTION about my health, so new territory.
 
Eagle 3, I know you fear going to groups and therapy if you have to become a patient at a hospital.

When I was hospitalized more than once, I often decided not to take part in group therapy while being hospitalized. I felt it would be too hard for me.
 
I took a "crisis vacation" earlier this year, I hadn't made any plans, but I also no longer wanted to live. I learned more about myself while I was there from the psych techs than any of the doctors. By the time of release, I was at a really good point for a live-in intensive outpatient program. Unfortunately I was not recommended. I may not have been expressing my needs as good as I could have. BUT, not going ended up being a blessing in disguise since everything started locking down with the covid. I do not regret going to the ER and getting admitted though, because I am still here.

Definitely find out what the doc is recommending. Be open and honest with yourself so you can be open with your therapist.

As a side note, having had suicidal thoughts and actions due to meds (not psych), and feeling the prescribing doc didn't listen to my concerns, I too have a fear of new meds that may affect my brain/thinking. There are some programs designed to fast track psych meds that are inpatient, just to find the right med and dosage needed, all while in a safe environment.

Good luck you are not alone
 
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