Tag Archives: PTSD

Support Needed for Mental Illness in the Workplace

Happy Monday! Today I want to share a recent article from USA Today that seems to address some issues I’ve been seeing (and living, let’s face it) about a lack of support around people with mental illness in the workplace.

I’ve been hitting a lot of big roadblocks when it comes to applying for SSDI, and I’ve honestly had some big questions about how our disability system works (or doesn’t work) here in the US. I’ve come across countless people who are against the whole idea of SSDI because it doesn’t support people who are disabled and want to work part time, and the current system seems to only support an “all” or “nothing” style of support. There have been so many situations I’ve found myself in where I know I could mentally benefit from working a few hours a week (giving my life a better sense of structure and a bigger sense of accomplishment and purpose) but the way the system is set up, trying to help myself this way is extremely frowned upon.

The article I’m sharing today addresses the idea of a “supported employment program” that potentially allows employers to do a better job of bridging the gap between the needs of their companies and realistic employment abilities of those with mental illness (which, let’s be honest, can widely vary for any given person over time). Personally, I consider this to be a stellar idea… I am just not sure how well this could realistically be executed. If companies aren’t currently willing to make the necessary accommodations for exceptionally well qualified applicants with mental illness as it is (something I have experienced several times), what would encourage them to use a program like this one?

At any rate, you can check out the article here. Give it a read and let me know what you think!

The Heart of July 4th

Propaganda of the American Colonies

Propaganda of the American Colonies

I would never refer to myself as an ardent patriot, but I do (on occasion) have the opportunity to spend time researching history and then living in a manner that our forefathers (and mothers) were accustomed to. The time of the American Revolutionary War is one that is of particular interest to me.

What is it about the period leading up to the war and the transition into a unified country I find so fascinating? Well, while others are roasting their hot dogs today and lighting off fireworks, I’m thinking about why July 4th is a holiday in the first place.

It is a story of a group of people being taken advantage of; an example of a true tale of the underdogs fighting for the rights they believe they deserve until they have achieved them.

This is an important story, and though it is one that comes up again and again in US history focusing on many different groups of people, this is a story that is still in its early stages when it comes to our story.

The American Revolution itself faced difficulty in reaching unity within the colonies. It provided a period of thought and contemplation about what basic rights should be afforded to all people, and (what people usually remember) also included a brutal struggle through the physical act of fighting.

You might be surprised to hear it, but I see a lot of similarities between the fight for American independence and the fight for fair, competent mental health services in our country and the need to bring people together on this issue. I don’t expect our journey to involve a navy or muskets, but I’m sure that is for the better!

The snake, for example, in the propaganda banner above is broken down into pieces representing each of the colonies that needed to come together to create a unified force. I think we face similar issues when attempting to unify people behind the cause of mental health because many of us have different viewpoints, different backgrounds, different disorders, different symptoms! Still, if we can find a way to work together we will find we are a force to be reckoned with; a snake you’d better not step on again!

Guerilla Warfare

Guerilla Warfare

During the American Revolution the British soldiers greatly outnumbered the colonist militia, so the militia changed the rules of war; hiding in wooded areas in an attempt to shield themselves while making an attack.

Most of us with mental illness have felt like we have needed to hide in order to keep ourselves safe, and being smart about when we share our experiences or staying calm and choosing our battles is a strategy that has already began to show some improvement in our nation’s social dialogue.

I know that while I feel comfortable coming forward and being open with everyone in my life about my experiences, I understand there are others in situations (like in a questionable workplace, family, or school environment) who have to be very careful about the battles they choose to fight and when they can fight them. I know these situations can be distressing, but I don’t consider this to be a drawback because when a hidden warrior chooses to finally make themselves seen there is a big impact.

Community

Community

One of the things I’ve found is that the act of hiding makes discovering a sense of community ten times more rewarding. This is part of what makes us strong; we truly appreciate much of what each other has to offer. Though I know there is still a little work that needs to go into unification for our cause, our community is constantly growing.

I expect that this 4th that there will be picnics and a sense of community and giddy children lighting off fireworks in the streets, but I hope that today you will also think about the reason behind it all.

No, it isn’t our right to bear arms, nor our hatred of paying taxes. It isn’t about guys in powdered wigs or military prowess. July 4th is about being someone who has struggled, someone who has been walked on, and demanding a better life.

If nothing else, that thought inspires me because I see myself in itIf that is what it truly means to be an American, maybe I’ve been a patriot all along?

Grass

Language and Mental Illness; A Different Point of View

I’ve been reading a lot of pleas and rants about how important it is for people to conform to one standard of language when it comes to discussing mental illness… this is not one of them.

Personally, I believe expecting everyone to adhere to strict conformity when it comes to discussing mental health is a step in the wrong direction, and while that is a notion that may boggle some minds, I’m hoping to make a clear case today for my (potentially less-popular) point of view. I am not here to call anyone out, just to express my concern and why I feel that way.

I’d like to start by stating the obvious:

People have different beliefs.

In fact, they’re allowed to. That is a big part of the idea that America was founded on, and globally it is even more apparent that our cultures and environments have produced many different ways of looking at the world. These many viewpoints include those that effect how people look at mental health.

If you haven’t already, you may want to take a second to check out The Icarus Project. This is a national community of people (largely artists) who don’t believe in taking traditional psychiatric medications (for the  most part) and instead try to embrace themselves in their current state, largely funneling their emotions into art.

Do you agree with this? Maybe not, but whether you or I agree with their beliefs doesn’t change their right to believe them.

A big part of our ability to live our lives comes from tolerance and the ability to get along with people with different viewpoints. It seems like such a large part when it comes to “battling stigma” has become pushing others to believe the things (and act the way) we want them to instead of focusing on being open and being treated with respect.

Language is Imperfect. 

I have gotten a lot of flack from my therapists for jumping back and forth between psychiatric verbiage when describing my mental state and regular descriptive language. What they don’t seem to understand is that most words don’t seem to describe what I’m aiming to describe very well at all, and I wind up with the oddest mish-mash (I’m sure you’ve read some here if you’re familiar at all with my blog) of language.

Language is imperfect, not all of the words we might want or need have been invented yet. Describing something that isn’t tangible (like something in our minds) can often be frustrating enough, and on top of that different groups of people have different feelings associated with different words. One word in English very rarely means one thing straight across the board (I guess maybe “buttress” is an exclusion?), and a word spoken in the city might have an entirely different connotation in the country (let alone from region to region).

Language is not something we can expect to lasso and subdue until it is uniform. Unfortunately, that isn’t the way language has ever worked (from the time it was invented) so it seems ludicrous to me to expect that it will now.

Language is a form of self-expression.

If we consider other forms of self-expression (music, painting, etc.) it seems ridiculous to walk up to someone painting and tell them they can’t use the color blue. Or they can’t use the “c” note. Or they can use the “c” note but only when followed with an “e flat”.

A lot of the things I’ve seen lately about mental health verbiage has sounded like that sort of bizarre notion me. While I understand that people feel concerned about how others are expressing themselves (something I will get into momentarily), the act of telling someone what they can and can’t say or write quickly falls into the realm of censorship. While I understand that is not anyone’s intention, that doesn’t change the fact that that’s where this attitude is heading.

In addition, self expression is as individual as… well… the individual! There is no such thing as a “right way” or a “wrong way” to express oneself. Surely, there are ways that may be more pleasing to the senses (which, again varies widely from person to person), or ways that our society deems more acceptable than others (also varies depending on many factors like age, location, race), but that normally doesn’t bar forms of self-expression that falls outside of these categories.

Do the actions or words of one person discredit the rest of the group?

This is the big question that I think has been fueling so many of these negative comments and posts. Certainly when one blogger appears sloppy or ignorant about mental health, we all suffer, right?

I read an article once about how a large group of lesbians (around the time the gay rights movement was really heating up) were shunning any woman who had identified herself as a lesbian but had slept with a man because they believed it made them all look bad. Instead of helping their own cause, it created tension and animosity among a group that should have been fighting along side one another for the same rights.

I feel like this is a very similar situation, and people who should be scooped up and cared for to bolster a strong mental health community are instead being ostracized and attacked (for often doing little more than using a word incorrectly).

This particular idea is one that has been weighing heavily on my heart for quite some time, not because of the language situation (that is really a secondary symptom for this issue) but because of how quick much of the mental health community is to jump on board with ostracizing or shunning anyone who has a mental illness and also committed an act of violence.

Does a seemingly “poorly written” blog post make us all look bad? (Really?)

To take it one step further I have to ask; does an act of violence from one person with mental illness make us all look bad?

If it does, it is not for the reasons you are probably thinking of. From my perspective it all comes down to the reaction of the mental health community, and whether our reaction is one of solidarity:

“This is an example of a very extreme instance of mental illness and is an important indicator about the help that is sill needed in the mental health community.”

or, more often, one of dismissal:

“People with mental illness are almost never violent. I am never violent, this has nothing to do with me.”

The issue of including (or being supportive) of someone in the mental health community who might need extra help is an issue ten times larger to me than being nit-picky about the language in a blog or on twitter. How can we expect people to be supportive and accepting of us when we can’t support or accept the people within our own mental health communities? Can we take a look at the bigger picture please?

This conversation has only just begun.

The conversation about mental health has only just began to heat up. I believe whole heartedly that putting our focus on the statements that don’t match up with our own beliefs and attacking them is incredibly foolish. At this point, I think it is less important what is being said as the fact that people are saying it.

Think about it, more people than ever before are beginning to talk about mental health, and that is truly remarkable! No matter what people are bringing to the table in this conversation, it is important to remember that people have different beliefs and the way we learn and understand is to have a conversation with many different points of view. We can’t expect people who are just starting to explore this topic to have the vocabulary or understanding that someone who has lived with these issues for many years to have, and attacking anyone for being ignorant or for having a different perspective will likely create an enemy instead of a friend.

Understanding wont happen overnight, and we can’t force people into seeing from our point of view. All we can do is share what we have, and be patient and tolerant with everyone else.

What can we do to help?

1. Express yourself! Express yourself with words, photography, paint, clothing, music, whatever it is that you do best. Use the language that suits you best to tell your story, the story of how you (an individual) live your life!

2. Practice patience. I know this can be a tough one (especially with a mood disorder), but if you see a comment or post that upsets/frustrates you, skip it. If you want to respond, maybe wait until the emotional reaction has gone and see how you feel then.

3. Practice positivity. The internet is one place in particular that I try to practice the phrase, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Try pledging yourself to leaving positive comments only and skipping writing negative ones. You’ll be amazed at how much this can help your own mood and feelings of positivity while blogging.

4. Focus on you. Try focusing on your own self expression and making it the best it can be instead of focusing on the perceived faults of others. When in conversation (online or in real life) and you feel you need to respond to a point of view you don’t agree with, start the dialogue by focusing on yourself. “I find this particular use of words offensive because ____. ” or “disagree because ____.” This leads to a more open conversation that feels more honest and less accusational.

5. Be open. In the mental health community, a lot of importance is placed on the portion of being open that involves sharing our stories, but it is equally as important to be open to what others have to say or questions they might have. Remember, this is a time for mental health conversation, and conversations are a two way street. It can be amazing how being open to a new idea or point of view can lead us to profound places; all it takes is a willingness to listen!

Anyone with works of self-expression coming from a mental health perspective who might be interested in seeing one pop up on this blog, shoot me an email at host@thebipolarcuriousblog.com

Trigger Warnings – What’s the Point?

It seems that the topic of trigger warnings has recently exploded through the internet and beyond, and I have to say I have been somewhat concerned about a lot of the things I’ve been reading. It seems like there are some big discrepancies about what people think the point of a trigger warning is, so I’m hoping I can shed a little light here.

First, what is a “trigger warning”?

A “trigger warning” is when someone makes a conscientious effort to label content as something that could potentially trigger episodes associated with mental illness and PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder). As far as content on the internet is concerned, this tag is usually provided by the creator of the writing or video associated with it.

Are “trigger warnings” considered censorship?

No. Censorship is the suppression of words, images, or ideas that are “offensive”. In the situations where a “trigger warning” tag is being used, none of the content is being withheld or removed. In fact, the point that none of this content is withheld is part of the reason the “trigger warning” exists. If the content in question was eliminated, there would be no need for a warning. Likewise, this warning does not bar people from reaching, viewing, or sharing the content, therefore nothing is suppressed.

Why would someone use a “trigger warning” tag?

The biggest misconception I’ve been seeing among the current dialogue around “trigger warning” tags is that they are used to help people avoid content which may be “offensive”.

This is not the case. I say that because “trigger warning” tags are not called “offense warnings”. They are called trigger warnings. Here’s the difference:

In a situation where I become offended, I might feel flushed. I might feel disgusted, or annoyed, or angry. I might leave angry comments or write angry emails. I might feel sad, or defensive, or any number of things that any human being might consider a typical reaction to something someone doesn’t agree with on a base level.

Now (and here I am going to employ the *trigger warning – sexual assault* tag simply out of curtosey) I want to give you a brief look at what living with PTSD is like, and what I experience when triggered by something.

In 2007 I was sexually assaulted. I don’t have a very clear memory of what happened, but I do have pretty vivid memories of the days that came after. The injuries I sustained. The hysteria, and screaming at people who came near me on the street. The seemingly constant panic attacks.

Seven years later I have worked hard with several therapists to lessen my PTSD symptoms. Things have gotten quite a bit better, I finally am able to have a sex life again. I can ride on the bus without having a panic attack when people bump into me, but after all that there are still boundaries I have to draw in my daily life. I can’t watch tv or movies with rape scenes (which is getting harder and harder lately as this seems to be becoming more and more common). I generally don’t allow myself to read about rape, frankly just that one little word (especially coming upon it in an unexpected place) is enough to send me spiraling back seven years.

Being triggered (having my PTSD symptoms switched “on”) by images or words associated with sexual assault is far beyond the notion of being “offended”. I find myself being sent back immediately where I mentally re-live the horror of what happened to me over, and over, and over again. It replays in my mind on repeat, but it doesn’t simply replay. It is more like re-living it. 

My throat closes up and I can’t breathe, and I start crying uncontrollably. I freeze, and nobody (not my boyfriend, or friends, or therapist) can say anything to me to bring me out of it. My whole body starts to shake violently in fear and sometimes I faint. My stomach becomes a giant knot and even after the flashbacks subside leaving me shaky and weak, the sense of repulsion is so great I can hardly eat without vomiting.

*end trigger warning* 

This kind of episode is enough to ruin an entire day for me. Having bipolar disorder on top of that means when my PTSD symptoms are triggered, it also often triggers intense depression or mixed episodes, which can leave me suicidal or homicidal and incapacitated for days, weeks, months…

I have to be extremely careful how I spend my time, the people I talk to, the media I can watch, and the things I read. A large part of my life is about avoiding the things that trigger me, and though I am getting closer every day to being able to do all the things I used to do, this is a serious condition that I work with my therapist on constantly to slowly desensitize myself. Can you see how that might be a pitfall? How easy it can be, especially with train-of-thought blogs, to stumble into something I couldn’t see coming? I was surprised to find myself triggered just the other day when watching Downtown Abbey Season 4 and I spent months waiting for that at the library (and that is a show that airs on PBS!). All I’m saying is that a little warning would have been nice!

Realistically, do topics like suicide or self-harm or abuse or sexual assault offend me? Not at all. In fact, I think they are important topics that need to be talked about. However, there are people that might come to harm by reading about these topics, particularly ones in the mental health community who are unstable, trying to take care of themselves, but are attempting to reach out to other bloggers.

I don’t care about the content of tv shows or movies or blogs, and I don’t think anyone who supports the idea of “trigger warnings” wants to stifle the stories or ideas people have. I know there are a lot of people who enjoy or consider particularly triggering content to be educational, so we need to keep writing about the difficult situations in our lives. That is not the issue here.

The mental health blogging community faces different challenges than those of, say, food bloggers, or fitness bloggers, or travel bloggers. Our content can be sensitive, but our readers are often also sensitive… not because they are easily offended, but because they are people living with symptoms of mental illness they often have little or no control over. How long do you think these people will keep reading if they’re being triggered by content presented to them?

While each person out there has the choice of whether or not to read something, they need to be able to make a choice that is right for them. That’s the end game when it comes to mental health, right? Doing what is best for each of us individually? I simply believe making that choice becomes much easier (and safer) when there is some kind of indication that the content might not be suitable for everyone.

Maybe that doesn’t mean using the words “trigger warning”. Maybe that means being conscientious about the title of our blogs reflecting the content, or suggesting the content is sensitive, or any number of things. I’m not here to suggest we all adhere to one set of rules, but does it seem that far fetched to respect our readers and want to help them enjoy the work we’ve enjoyed creating?

Again, I’m not here to stifle the the notion of creativity of free speech, just to show a little respect and care for my readers who, like me, may have lived through something traumatic. I consider “trigger warning” tags to be a common curtosey, a way to let my more sensitive viewers avoid debilitating episodes that have an extremely negative impact on their lives. If a choice I make can help others make good choices for themselves, it feels like a no-brainer to me.

Tattoos and Closure

In many parts of America I think tattoos are written off as the hallmark of degenerates. I think what our culture is slowly realizing (on the tails of American youth) that tattoos are no longer symbols limited to criminals, gang members, and salty dogs, but are swiftly being acknowledged as a disciplined art form that has been spreading (especially through the Pacific Northwest) like wildfire.

Today many different people have and are getting tattoos, and the reasons people get them are practically as widespread as the artwork itself. Some people consider their tattoos to be living works of art with no connection to any specific motive beyond a sense of their own enjoyment of a color, a shape, or an artist. Others collect tattoos to represent things that are important in their lives, like their children. It isn’t uncommon for people to get tattoos as a milestone representing a celebration like graduating, moving to a new place, or starting a business.

While I don’t want to detract from these (and other) reasons people have for getting tattoo work done, I want to specifically address another big reason people seek out the experience of getting a tattoo; closure.

While many people get tattoos as a symbol for a milestone event in their lives, it is very common for these events to have something to do with loss. A memorial piece for the loss of a loved one (like a parent or pet), a cover-up piece to detract from scars associated with physical loss (like a difficult surgery or self-harm), or a piece to symbolize the end of something difficult (like a relationship) are all ways people seek closure through the art of the tattooing.

I find that many, especially those seeking a tattoo to move toward closure, are infatuated with the ritualistic method of tattooing as well. I really believe that most people in the process of seeking closure experience some degree of anxiety about it, which is somewhat amplified when that person is about to be tattooed. As the artists works, there is physical pain that might (as some might suggest with self harm) be like a physical manifestation of the pain the grief of loss has been causing internally. When the piece is finished the pain subsides and is replaced with something beautiful, something permanent that can act as a visual reminder of our loss, replacing that constant need to obsess over it mentally.

***

After somewhat inadvertently escaping an abusive relationship in 2006 I didn’t realize how much I’d been effected by it until a couple years later. Though I’d moved on and lived in a different place and was in a new relationship, I was in a constant state of terror that my ex would reappear and set fire to everything I’d built.

This fear was not entirely far fetched. It had been common for him to track people down and show up without warning, and though I thought I had made it clear to him never to come near me again, I had the slow churning of the anxious bipolar mind working against me as well.

When I would have periods of psychosis, I was the most afraid. Afraid in general, but mostly afraid of him. My paranoia would take over my life and I would be afraid to open the curtains or unlock the door. After changing my phone number and moving again (for the 4th time since I’d seen him last) I still didn’t feel safe. I still didn’t feel free.

By last year (six years after the relationship ended) I still felt as anxious and terrified as ever. I was afraid I would bump into him in the street (despite a rumor that he lived in another state). I was afraid that I would come home one day and he would be in my apartment. I was afraid that he would do something irrational… and that’s when I took a look in the mirror.

If anyone was being irrational, it was me. I was in a constant state of being engulfed by fear, fear of something that wasn’t very likely going to happen at that point, if it had at all. I had obsessed and worried so much that I felt swamped, completely unable to tell what signs to consider threats and what was harmless.

In a manic epiphany (I tend to have one every few years) I concluded that I should get a tattoo. The tattoo would be a moth, because my ex was terribly afraid of moths. This permanent symbol would act as a talisman, and perhaps not directly repelling him, if I associated myself with something he considered repellant, I hoped I would feel empowered. A reminder that I am safe now.

Frankly, I wasn’t sure if the idea would work. Surely, getting a tattoo would work (I already had two at the time) but I didn’t know if I could ease my mind this way, particularly a very anxious, obsessing, bipolar mind.

When the mania wore off I still felt inspired, and within a few weeks I met up with a local artist (a great one, I might add) who tattooed me.

(I also wanted to note that you wont find any images of my tattoos on this post because I don’t post images of my tattoos on the internet. I prefer they remain singular works of art, not copied by anyone else.)

I don’t think the change was immediate, but I am sitting here almost a year later and haven’t had any problems with anxiety or paranoia about my ex-boyfriend in months. Of course, that isn’t to say that I haven’t had any anxiety or paranoia about other things, but the fear I had before (particularly about him breaking into my apartment) seems to be quelled.

Going through with getting something as simple as a tattoo has greatly improved the amount of closure I have felt about a traumatic time in my life and lessened my fear about my past, and scaling back that fear has meant specifically (for me);

  • Less frequent apartment lock checking (especially when I was getting up in the middle of the night several times to check locks)
  • Being able to keep the window open when I am at home
  • Being able to be home alone without leaving every light on
  • Feeling comfortable leaving the apartment more frequently
  • Less concern that he will jump out at me on the street, I am able to walk much more relaxed
  • I no longer feel the need to keep moving around or changing my phone number

I realize the idea of using tattooing as a way to help combat anxiety or fear is something that people may be skeptical about, and that is why I wanted to share my experience about it. There are many people out there who, like me, see tattooing as a form of therapy.

After all, there have been moments in my regular therapy sessions where my therapist has asked me to close my eyes and imagine wearing an outfit that makes me feel confident, strong, and relaxed. She said that any time I can close my eyes and imagine I’m wearing it.

All I’ve done is taken this idea one step further. I thought of something I can wear that makes me feel confident, strong, and relaxed… and I’ve permanently adhered it to my body.

Now I never have to close my eyes and imagine, I can just look down and remember who I am.

Improving Mental Healthcare Access for Veterans

Happy Memorial Day folks!

I wanted to take some time to bring a little awareness regarding an issue that I consider extremely important right now, and that is the long wait times and limited access Veterans have for receiving mental healthcare.

As someone who lives with bipolar disorder in the pacific northwest, I have seen (and experienced) huge wait periods between when myself or my peers have needed to see a specialist and when we’ve actually been able to see one. Unfortunately, this is something I’ve rather come to expect these days.

What I don’t expect is similar wait times for veterans. While I’m not here to say that veterans are somehow better than the regular population (in fact, I generally consider myself anti-war) but these are people who have already given up an extraordinary amount for the sake of the rest of us.

As someone who has been in the position where long wait periods for psychiatrists left me with no other choice than to enter a psychiatric hospitalization I understand how hopeless this situation can feel, and I hope our government can take action on getting these folks the help that (I dare say) they’ve earned.

You can find an article with a little more detail about the situation here.

In Psychiatry Limbo

May first has come and gone, and I am now covered under my (selected but previously withheld) insurance provider under my state Medicaid program.

It has been two months since my last visit to my psychiatrist, and now that I have this new, shiny insurance I can potentially begin to see one (but not the same one) again. I made about 15 unnecessary phone calls to my insurance folks and psych providers in my area before deducing that the simplest route will probably be for me to see the psychiatrist who works at my current therapist’s office.

Despite making this decision, there are a lot of questions swirling in my head about how this is going to work. My previous psychiatrist was linked to a hospital, so getting lab work done (to track my lithium levels or other side effects) was extremely simple. Seeing a psychiatrist in a building above a Mexican restaurant leaves me thinking things probably wont be so straightforward anymore… and I am eager to meet him to find out exactly what that will mean for my care and time management.

Realistically, at this point I am pretty well off. My old psychiatrist wrote me a prescription for six months worth of medications, so I am in no way hurting in that department. My eagerness to meet this new doctor is really just coming from my own impatience and curiosity about what kind of man he is, and what he can bring to the table for me. 

I was a little disappointed to find that my last visit to the clinic did not result in making an appointment with this psychiatrist. New insurance means I had to do the intake paperwork all over again, and my only option was to check a box suggesting I am interested in seeing someone for medication management. I’m finding I’m a little nervous, because  my last doctor had a six week waiting list before I could do an intake with him. If I haven’t even had a chance to make an appointment with this person, how much time is going to be tacked on to that inevitably lengthy wait?

I feel I must add that for most people in most areas throughout the country, the wait time probably isn’t as high. The big trouble is that here, in Seattle, there is a huge demand for psychiatry and only a few good doctors in the area to meet that demand. Now that the healthcare reform has made these doctors draw lines in the sand about what patients they will and will not take, the ones who accept the lowest (and most common) form of insurance (state Medicaid) are totally swamped.

Again, I know I can wait. I know I can be patient about this… I’m not exactly looking to rush into trying any new medications in the next few weeks (as I’m taking a break from all that). I just feel uneasy not having a psychiatrist at my beck and call, because things can change for me from tolerable to intolerable (to say the least) for me with the blink of an eye.

I’m heading to the clinic tomorrow, and hopefully I will be allowed to make an appointment. Just having a solid date, somewhere out in the future, floating around (even if I can’t touch it) makes me feel more at ease with the whole idea of being in psychiatry limbo.