Breaking Down - A First Person Perspective

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posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 04:11 AM
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Hello again ATS!

A couple of weeks back I promised to write a thread detailing the strange journey and twists that my life has taken over the past several months and how I wound up being a literal “Missing Person” without even knowing it...

But then, as seems to be the case with me these days, life got in the way. I do not quite know how or why it happens – I just know that chaos seems to really really like me for some reason. Not that I am complaining as it is not all bad. It is just that sometimes a little NON chaos might help.

At any rate – I am here now to fulfill my promise and tell my tale.

As some who read these words will already know, I have a psychiatric history and have been very vocal about it for several years now. I choose to be overly open about my own issues because I believe very strongly that there is an undue stigma regarding mental illness in our society as well as a woeful lack of education about the entire subject. The mentally ill are one of the few groups left in this culture who still endure open bias and ostracism. It has always been my hope to shed a bit of light into this dark corner so that people might see it a bit more clearly and, maybe, become a bit more compassionate about those who suffer.

Now, stepping down from my soap-box, we begin...

The event that triggered this change in my world is something I am hesitant to talk about because it involves family and differing points of view. Suffice it to say that sometimes conflicting viewpoints simply cannot coexist – even when neither is fully right or fully wrong. Sometimes it is just an oil and water kind of thing. That was the case here. One minute I had a home and was beginning to feel pretty comfortable and stable. The next minute I was walking down the street with a gym bag- with absolutely no idea where I was going and in the midst of a full blown psychotic episode.

That all happened late one Friday night in September. It was the twenty-seventh if memory serves.

Trying to shed light on that night is very difficult because the situation I found myself in had put me into a very irrational state of mind. For example, days later, as I unpacked the gym bag – I was left astounded at some of the things I had packed. I had managed to grab a few things that one would expect – but I'd also packed things that I would not possibly have ended up having any use for at all. Things like two four gigabyte USB sticks. There was no rhyme or reason to it.

The same applies to my behavior that night.

Initially it all made perfect sense to me, as I walked out of the house I had been living in. I would just find my way to California – where I had lived before and where I felt at home. It was the perfect answer to everything!

Except I was in Georgia...
On foot...
Broke...
In crisis...

I made it all the way to the freeway on-ramp and had stuck my thumb out before the above all began to sink in... The shock of the situation I had been in wearing off. There I was, at around one o'clock in the morning, standing next to a freeway – coming to my senses to some degree and totally at a loss for what to do.

I had nowhere to turn.

In that moment the depression and anxiety spiked and I just about gave up. In fact the idea of giving up is what, ironically enough, kept me from having to do so. You see, several years back I had made a promise to a friend – that if I ever felt like giving up, I would go to the emergency room and tell them about it. It is very important to me to try to keep my promises – so I started walking away from that freeway on-ramp and began the several miles long walk to the hospital.

The stark truth is that, at the time, I did not think the hospital would do anything at all to help me. Over the years I have been in that very same emergency room in various states of mental health crisis and each and every other time they simply blew me off, telling me to call a doctor the following day or referring me to someone else who would then tell me that they did not treat patients who did not have insurance. Always a catch-22.

This is what I expected to happen... That I would fulfill my promise only to be expelled right back into the hopeless situation I had arrived in.

Only it did not work out that way. In fact the very same Doctor who they always called in to brush me off chose, this time, to take me seriously. I spent two days in an emergency room bed and then was told that I was being moved to another facility.

Let me stop here to address a snobbery of my own that I have been guilty of in the past. Despite the fact that I have a twenty-nine year history of mental illness, I have never ( before this point at least ) spent a single second in any sort of psychiatric hospital. I was never an inpatient. The truth is that I took a sort of pride in that and bragged about it in a way... I might meet new people and, when the time came to tell them about my issues, I might say something like “I'm crazy, but not like been to a loony bin crazy...”

Those are words that I will never speak again – and a lesson in humility I earned as I spent eight days in a Mental Health Crisis Wing.

The journey from the ER to the Mental Health facility was pretty surreal. As I have learned since, in the state I live in ( Georgia ) there are only a couple of counties left that still have such facilities. This is something I did not know at the time. All I know is that a very attractive woman walked into the room, said she was going to be my driver, gathered up my things and led me out. Her partner ( A guy whose entire appearance screamed “I've been out of the military for about two days and I will KILL you if you so much as fart off-key ) was waiting outside. I was loaded into a sort of ambulance ( one that looked like an ambulance from the outside, but was much more like a police paddy wagon inside ) and then we drove... and drove... and drove... and then drove some more.

Hours passed driving.

At first I occupied myself by stealing glances at the woman ambulance driver – because mental patients wearing hospital gowns are pretty damned sexy. Right?


But as time went on, and we drove deeper and deeper into the middle of nowhere... Well my inner-ATSer began to kick in. I mean we were in the freaking boonies and I was started to think about all sorts of off the wall things....

Was I being renditioned?
Was I being taken to some horror movie type mental ward where they'd try to do experiments on me?
Had Georgia decided I'd make a better citizen of Alabama?

That last one is close – as I am sitting about five minutes from the Alabama border as I write this.

Eventually the boonies began to give way to exit signs and indications of civilization. A few exits past that point, we left the freeway and started navigating through back streets until we arrived at a large and modern looking hospital.

I was removed from the vehicle and walked through two sets of double doors that I would not walk back through for the next eight days.

One had flown over the cuckoos nest. I was in the nut hatch. The crazy house. The padded wall motel. The place I never thought I would ever be.

And thank God it happened.

For those of you who wonder what it's like inside a place like that ( at least the one I was in – I've been told I lucked out and wound up in a good place and not one of the really scary ones ) - the singular word I can invoke to give the most honest impression is...

BORING.
edit on 1/11/14 by Hefficide because: (no reason given)



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posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 04:13 AM
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That's right. The Mental Health Crisis Facility is by far and away the most boring place I have ever been in my entire life.

We had group therapy all day, every day. The SAME groups every day, all day. Over and over again. From before sunrise until near sunset it was a repeat of every other day... the same people saying the same things day in and day out. I am not a drunk, but I had to attend AA meetings. I am not a drug user but I had to attend NA meetings.

There was a brief window each day when people were allowed outside but, as my luck would have it, I fell victim to a clerical error and was errantly considered an “escape risk” until my very last day there. Each day my Doctor would laugh and say he would get it fixed and then he would forget about it. It is all in the numbers... a “Ten-twelve” is a voluntary patient ( which I actually was the entire time ), a “Ten-thirteen” is a patient at risk for escape or suicide – a non voluntary patient ( which everyone is for the first three days until they are categorized otherwise ), and a “Ten-Fifteen” is a person who is being held by court order. Some clerk typed me in as a “Ten-Fifteen” instead of a “Ten-Twelve”.

The other major bad luck issue there was that my medication got all screwed up. The doctor was assuming that the nurses were giving me my “normal” meds... those I was previously taking. The nurses were under the impression that the doctor had suspended my normal meds. It took five days to get that one resolved.

All that aside... the food in that place was ssssooo good. I mean high end restaurant good. One would never have thought they were eating in a hospital. I have never eaten as much as I ate in that place.

The major GOOD luck thing that came out of it is that the Doctor who could not seem to get anything else right did find a medication ( an SSRI – a class of drugs I've had really bad luck with and have written threads demonizing ) that works for me. The first day I saw he had prescribed an SSRI I was furious and resolved to tell him off when the side effects eventually popped up and put me into the part of the hospital NOT reserved for mental health patients. But it never happened and I continue to take my new medication still – feeling much, much better than I have in years.

The other thing that came of my stay in the inpatient ward was a strange question I was asked literally five minutes after walking in the door.... A woman walked up and simply said “I know you're from the Atlanta area, but would you consider living in this city?”

I think it is understandable that my initial response to her was visceral and immediate. After all, what kind of thing was that to ask of a person who just spent nearly three hours in an ambulance without any clue where they were headed and who was still very much in a state of shock about everything that was happening. But as time wore on this same woman ( who turned out to be my case worker ) explained herself and talked me into staying.

Some of you are aware that I have been fighting for disability for several years now. I learned that the courts in this area are much more compassionate and quick than those near Atlanta. In fact my current advocate is utterly amazed that I was ever denied at all and assures me that as soon as we get a court date here I will be approved. Now I am looking at weeks or maybe a couple of months until things improve... NOT years as I was previously dealing with.

The other factor in leading me to stay in this new city is that they have a program to help house me until my benefits come through. Something that I did not think existed anywhere. It is a very Spartan life here. I am in a group home that has few amenities ( the food certainly is not as good as it was at the hospital ).I share a bedroom with three other men currently and there is not Internet here.. BUT it is a stable place to stay and the stress I dealt with feeling as though I was imposing upon friends and family is totally gone now.

Another benefit to being here is that I have received medical care. Some might recall that my entire journey into disability began simply because I applied for medical assistance and was told that I would have to file for SSDI and be approved just to see a doctor. Here I have seen a doctor twice, a dentist, and an eye doctor. In fact I was surprised to learn that I am apparently in amazingly good physical health. I have the blood pressure and pulse rate of an active young adult. My blood tests all came back perfect. Hell, even my vision is better than it was. My prescription went from 20/50 and 20/65 to 20/30 and 20/50. The doctor said that I might not even need glasses in a year or two if the trend keeps up.

As all of the above was unfolding – one day I was asked if I would like to go to the library and apply for a library card. I said “Sure” because there is not much to do around here and went. I was happy to see that they had computers and I asked if there was any fee to use them. I was told “No” and I logged onto my Facebook.

This was roughly six weeks after that September night I had walked away and was when I found out that I was legally a missing person. That was a twist that took me totally by surprise.

I do not know if people can relate or not but when I left I felt like I had pissed off every single person I knew. I felt like a failure and members of my own family had actually told me that they would be better off if I were gone or dead. Most of my friends had managed to vanish away from my life and all I really had left was you people... names on a screen. Anonymous folks that I debated with, wrote for, and sometimes chatted with.

The idea that anyone would miss me was truly not even on my radar.

The fact that so many people did and so many people have shown me kindness since is the single most humbling and beautiful thing I have ever been fortunate to experience. There simply are not words to express my gratitude and the effect that this has all had upon me.

That effect? Four months ago I was a guy who had blocked out most of the world and who spent all of his time locked in a bedroom hiding from life. I was a person who had totally fallen out of touch and lost all motivation to keep going. Today? I sleep in my bedroom ( the three roommates thing is only partly responsible for that ). I socialize with a large group of people and I hold my head up when I walk. I make eye contact with every person I see and I speak whenever a person is near. I greet everyone.

Before I opened up about my problems I was a person falling down... A person losing their faith, their self-esteem, and all the things that make a person a positive light in their world. I had a home, for all intents and purposes, I had money – but I had lost my soul.

Today I am waiting for a check in a group home. I own next to nothing and am about as close to rock bottom as a person can be without totally falling through the cracks – but somewhere in it all I regained my pride, found myself, and am much more the person I want to be than I ever was before.

I realize that this thread is a bit scattered and probably hard to follow. I wish it could be different but I am writing about things so personal and complex that it is very difficult to try and craft it all together. I thank you for your patience.

Thanks for reading and the best to all of you! There is no other community that compares to you ATS! My story is proof of that.

If anyone has any questions, please feel free to ask. As I stated in the beginning, it is my desire to help others understand the ins and outs of mental illness.

Heff



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 04:25 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


Bless ya!!!

Well if it is any comfort I am experiencing the same.

I ran away to Paris on a ferry to escape in total confusion after a psychotic breakdown back in June 2013.

I ended up four five weeks at St Anne's hospital.

Don't let it bring you down Dear Soul! It is just that we are a bit different.

Please be aware that we are in great company with the most innovative souls in history. I like listening to Bob Dylan, Jim Morrison and reading stuff like Arthur Rimbaud *French poet. You can be sure their heads have been where ours' go to. Great soul company.

I would not want my mind to work in any other way. If you want to reach high you will have to reach low, too.

All I can say is try and know when the symptoms are coming on. Mine are a sharp increase in substance use, insominia and not eating. If that happens together then I must go to the good Doctor and get some meds. I'm not going there again. It wore me out so much. Though the visionary side was most impressive.

You are you and this is how you are. Make the best of it my friend. You are a heavyweight round here in terms of your presence. That speaks of your intelligence and originality of thought.

If ever you need a listening ear you are most welcome to message me. Please keep on coping always.



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 04:40 AM
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A brave and informative posting and you are to be applauded for what you have shown by it.

One advantage of this type of communication, and I am talking generally here, is that allows those that might find it impossible to state their feelings face to face to get them out.
I am not advocating 100% on-line psych. evaluation and treatment, although Obamacare might!

Your experience, whilst harrowing to read about, unfortunately echoes that of many on this site. This site though has many tricks up its sleeve and there are a broad range of people able to offer support and advice. You are by now strong enough to shrug off the detractors and naysayers and make your own mind up, keep doing so.

You don't need to take every obstacle head on, some you go around or under or over and maybe when the occasion warrants you go straight through, shaking off the pieces on the way.

There's an old saying from Hippie days, "just keep on trucking ' bro'"!



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 04:49 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


Good to have you here again.
I don't think it was scattered, it made sense to me anyway. It definitely helped fill in the puzzle. But, we're all pleased to see you doing well. Can we look forward to more frequent threads from you, or will your internet time continue to be sporadic?

Either way, it's good to have you back. And there were many other members of ATS concerned about you. I was getting PMs a few times a week asking if you were OK.
edit on 11-1-2014 by watchitburn because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 04:54 AM
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Welcome to a new chapter of life,Heff. It's good to see you back. It's a fact of life that we have to hit the ground hard to bounce back up. Sounds like you bounced good. Happens to the best of us. Keep one foot in front of the other. Best wishes to you. Oh and family is definitely where you find it.



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 05:13 AM
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Glad you are getting better and found a part of the system that apparently works and is compassionate. It's a crap-shoot whether you find help or not.

People tend to think all sorts of "crazy" things about mental illness, but it can be incredibly subtle as well as quite obvious. Something as simple as a few molecules of dopamine can change one's perceptions of the whole world.

One thing to be said is that mental dysfunction is rampant, and probably always has been... though some of the properties of modern society, like isolation and finding support for delusional thinking on the internet (cough), can exacerbate it.

Anyway, I've always liked your posts and you seem like smart, compassionate, and now stable, person and I'm glad you found help and a better perspective about yourself. Grats.

Edit: and I forgot to add... the post was a fine narrative and not confused or rambling at all... heh.. just wanted to give feedback in case you felt "delicate." You're good...
edit on 1/11/2014 by Baddogma because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 05:18 AM
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Of course it's scattered and complex, to be otherwise wouldn't be a true reflection of our real lives or selves. I'm happy that you decided to share your experiences Heff. There is a stigma to mental health treatment that people fear. There is also a legal aspect in that some of your rights can be taken away simply due to receiving treatment.

I cannot claim to have been through what you have but I have been there, involuntarily. I suffered severe depression as a kid almost 40 years ago. The kind where you no longer care about living and willingly take all kinds of stupid risks just to feel alive. It's easy for me to see what was happening from where I sit right now but at the time like you, I was lost. It was as if my soul had just left me one day and everything lost it's meaning. As coincidence would have it I found my discharge papers a couple days ago and read the notes about my treatment.

I suppose being a juvenile had something to do with my condition. I had no desire to join the world of adults- they all seemed miserable, bored and stuck in meaningless routines to me. Go to work, go home, watch tv, sleep. Wash, rinse, repeat. Something about that existence terrified me, struck me as such a poor substitute for what we as people are capable of. I spent my last 2 months of High School involuntarily committed to a mental institution. I had dropped all my classes except Art and with the blessings of a wonderful teacher I spent all but 1 hour of the day in the Art room.

I was released 2 days before graduation but something awful had happened while I was gone. My Art teacher had instructed a student to clean out everything still left in the lockers and they threw out my entire year's worth of artwork. 2 days after graduating things got harder as my best friend (who I had played music with for 3 years) mysteriously took off for the beach (I was supposed to ride with him) and on the way ran head on into a tractor trailer.

I lost all my artwork and I had lost my best friend in the space of a couple days. I realized at that point that if I did not stand on my own 2 feet I would have been swept away and become another statistic. Somehow I learned to accept it and move on. I had found rock bottom and discovered it was still the same old "me" whether I was on top of the world or the bottom. I would and could get by.

I say this to encourage others who may not see a future for themselves or meaning in their lives. Hang in there! You are so much stronger than you know and it takes the worst of times and situations to discover the power that you have. Since going through that I have found that I can remain calm and objective under the very worst of circumstances. I've found I'm at my very best when things are at their very worst.

I can honestly say that I am still the same person I was 40 years ago; my values have not changed and many of the same subjects still interest me. What is different is feeling like I sit in the drivers seat instead of being an unwilling passenger. My trip is just about finished but to those much younger than me I would say stay true to yourselves. Each of us was created unique and we all have a special calling in this life. Never stop looking for it, never stop being grateful for the simple things like food to eat, a place to sleep, a body that does what you ask of it to do. We often have to lose things to see their true value. Don't lose yourself or it may be too late to find that value in who and what you are. You are worthy, you deserve to be happy and you can if you make the decision to be and stick to it.

Glad to hear you're doing well Heff, trust me when I say you have been truly missed my many here.



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 06:38 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


I have to say, Heff, that while you and I haven't interacted on these boards before, I've always admired and respected your thoughts and felt you were one of the coolest ATS mods.

THat said, I'm moved by this thread, as SO MUCH of it sounds just like me around 10 years ago. At that time I ended up in a loony bin in Nothern California for five days after getting completely wasted drunk and locking myself in a room with a rifle. I was in a dark place with feelings like you describe, except I really did feel a desire to not live. My wife's parents took me the hospital, initially I thought it would be for only the night, but of course doctors weren't comfortable that I wasn't a danger to myself for some days.

I remember the boredom and all the group meetings. I smoked cigarettes then and I remember that I wasn't allowed to smoked all that time. They never let me outside. But that's about all I remember. I was on so many drugs, I don't even know what I was on and even now my memories of that experience are so few and hazy.

I am heartened to read that things are better for you, that you are feeling better. It's interesting to me that you found an SSRI you liked! I have such a negative image of SSRIs (due mostly to experience but probably in no small part to your threads), and am honestly still suspicious of them and haven't taken an SSRI or atypical since 2007.

The thing is, I reached another very, very dark time in my life and am willing to consider things I previously hadn't tried because I hope to reach a place where things don't seem so dark or, at least, the darkness doesn't have such a crippling effect on me. So I have to admit that I'm a little curious what you found that has helped you without the side effects being so bad. I understand if you don't want to share that, but it does make me wonder if I am just being stubborn.

I've even had a pretty traumatic recent event, one that's I hesitate to go into because I want it out of my head, and it makes me crave the benzos that used to knock me out. But just being in that spot is scary for me. Especially with how hard it is to stop doing some of the meds. This is why I react so strongly to your thread, I think. I am at a point where I need to do whatever I can to see the light!

I'm also now living in a county with completely horrible health care, otherwise I'd seek some counseling as it's helped in the past. Believe me, I'm familiar with mental health here (more in central california now) and the overworked psych nurses are usually more disinterested than helpful.

I'm also curious as to why that doctor finally decided to take you seriously? What do you think it was this time?

Thank you for sharing your story and, again, very glad to hear that you are safe and feeling better. Very best wishes to you and I hope this event really is the start of more good things to come!



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 07:34 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


Heff, that was very well written and engaging.
I hope it helps people understand what it's like to be struggling with this illness.
It's really hard to live like that. I just got on a new drug as well. Refused the SSRI's too, but got a milder version now that seems to be helping.

Thank you for sharing your story



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 07:51 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


An interesting chapter in your lifes' book. It doesn't sound like you're at rock bottom. More like on an elevator going up!

Thank you for sharing and welcome back!



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 07:52 AM
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Hefficide

That last one is close – as I am sitting about five minutes from the Alabama border as I write this.


OMFG. I feel for you, I was at the local military base for a couple of years.

At least you have access to the best tat shops, pawn stores and strip clubs outside of Fayetteville.

If you get day passes, try to go visit the base when people are on the jump towers. It can be amusing.

Protip: as one of my instructors once said, if you decide to go AWOL, head for the lights of the city, the other direction goes into the swamp.



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 09:44 AM
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I gave you a SnF heff for this.

But that seems some how empty, this is not just another ATS thread this is something much more and much deeper, that much is clear, so a SnF seems like nothing.

I remember noticing you were gone and the frenzy on the site for a couple of days until we were all told to clam down, I think i remember seeing a facebook page as well.

You are quite obviously a very special person, strangers from all over the world missing about you, so you might say you are at rock bottom but really I think you are a very special person (not to mention brave, I would never post stuff like this), I think your kind of Amazing. Its amazing how you have came through this and its also amazing in a strange way how i feel like you really brought the ATS community together, doesn't matter if we were skeptics or hard core tin foil hats dudes we all wanted to know was; "where the hell is heff". I think that is something you can be really proud of!

I have honestly never read a thread on ATS that has touched me at any emotional level until I read this one.

Quite simply amazing.

All the best to you!
edit on 11-1-2014 by OtherSideOfTheCoin because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 09:59 AM
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I don't think the OP is scattered at all. You seem more focused than usual. It appears the meds you were on before was effecting your vision. The food you are eating now may also be better for your condition. The SSRI you are taking appears to be working good. Diet is important to keep serotonin levels right, and there are other factors where diet alone cannot always help. I'm not going to get into this, I just wanted to mention it.

A chemical imbalance, no matter what the cause, is not good. It can have many side effects. It is good to see you are doing better. Hopefully they will help you to stay better. I know some people need extra serotonin, my wife being one of them. She takes a small SSRI because she has to live with me getting exited about the boring things I choose to get obsessive compulsive about. When I desire to learn something I go overboard and get very perfectionist about it. This kind of gets to her, but I have lots of people who desire my perfectionist approach to things.

I guess I am not really normal myself, I enjoy learning about whatever I am doing. That is not how society operates. They want everyone to have their specialties and go to school to learn the conditioning that is required. I don't like conditioning other than what is required to fit into society peacefully. So I am technically broken also.

You sound better Heff, and you are in a better place. I can't understand why anyone would want to live in Atlanta in the first place. The air stinks there, I suppose you can get used to it though. The traffic is terrible, it would be less crowded to take a subway. Maybe the area I was through was just congested, but I cannot fathom wanting to live there. Rats don't even live like that in the wild.

The most sane thing you did was to get out of Atlanta.



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 10:03 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 

Heff, there are a lot of things that passed through my mind and heart while reading this page of your personal diary. I almost feel guilty, as though I sneaked a peek at a part of someones life I wasn't supposed to see. Many things came to mind I could share with you in the way of my own profound personal tragedies, and that doesn't come easy for me. Believe me when I say, I am not an open book. Ask my wife. Instead, I'm just going to make a few brief statements.

1. I am genuinely glad to see you back at ATS.
2. Thank you for having the courage to share this.
3. Thank you for having the courage to be a real man, and a real human being.

Whatever you may think of me, know that you have my respect.



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 10:29 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


Heff, that was beautifully written, and an enormous gift to ATS readers.

I'm very glad that you finally got the help you NEEDED; and that you kept your promise to 'try' - as years go by, new meds become available. I myself have been on an SSRI for 20 years now. It does nothing but help me sleep, function, and stay active - there are no 'side effects' like 'tripping', at least for me.

Every person is different, and every SSRI is as well. Do you mind telling us which one you have been prescribed??

I want to thank you, also, for a thread shedding positive light on the MHPs who truly DO want to help. Your experience may help someone who is on the brink to give one last chance to the profession. I was a MHP for several years, as well as having been in therapy myself before a mid-life graduate program that earned me a Master's in the field...

I burned out due to my inability to "leave it at work" - I was just too sensitive to my client's troubles and concerns, and was unable to set the "boundaries" that therapists are expected to draw with "clients." I've always been a self-disclosure type of person - I think that helps others; a helper who is NEVER personal, who doesn't share their own pain and experiences with the client, can come across as cold, distant, and untrustworthy. My style was warm, inviting, and sincerely wanting to "know" the person. In doing so, I found myself "bonding" with what were supposed to be only 'client names on a list'. I just couldn't do it.

I couldn't listen to people's deepest fears, hurts, regrets, confusions, and pain without genuinely FEELING for them - whether for better or worse. Some of those 'bonds' - now all long-dissolved and only memories - were wonderful gifts. Others were quite painfully disillusioning. I started to recognize I was too vulnerable to becoming 'a friend'.

I'll never regret having met those people who were my clients, and will always have a special compartment in my heart for many of them. Your case worker sounds like a wonderful pro.

I guess my main point is:
MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONALS CAN HELP PEOPLE. It's important to find the right "fit" between a client and a helper; just like parenting, or teaching, or coaching, or any other 'mentorship' position.

You are a gem - I missed you, and obviously so did hundreds of others.
Welcome back to our little crazy world - and CONGRATULATIONS!!!!



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 10:35 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 


Welcome back dear Heff.

It takes a hell of a lot of courage to put into words and share what you've just told us. Lives are different from one to another but your op was easy to read and easy to connect to. I did spent a few months in a mental ward a few years back following a very serious mental meltdown. Not too many know about it, whether they are family or friends. It is not something that I find easy to share, actually, it is quite the opposite.

So your story here - being pretty similar to what I've gone through - is very cathartic in a sort of way, for me.

So, thank you for sharing it, for stepping up and I sincerely wish you better days ahead, my friend.

~Marc.



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 10:36 AM
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Heff,
Welcome back. You were valued, missed, and now, welcomed home again.
Your posts have always illustrated how smart, deep and creative you are.
But what comes across the most is honesty, authenticity. You are real.
People are hungry to connect with those brave enough to be real in a world of masks and fears and personas.

As you read these replies, they may seem to be words on a computer screen and nothing more. But, trust me, these words are all from very real, flesh and blood people.

Be well.



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 11:43 AM
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reply to post by Hefficide
 

Good to hear that Heff.

Now I might not know you personally, but I do have one piece of advice:

Right now the world is helping you; sooner or later, make sure you pay back that favour by helping others who go through what you did, and you will always be the most happiest guy on the planet.
Trust me, I'm a name on your screen.
edit on 11/1/14 by MadHatter364 because:



posted on Jan, 11 2014 @ 11:44 AM
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You are an absolutely brilliant person.

I had no idea you had such a struggle.

Courageous post...👍





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