Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto, Canada
i should probably restate that despite what i said about feeling like a robot, they do provide pretty adequate care, it the cases i observed a lot of patients were completely non-functional in many ways and immediate intervention and being put under constant supervision was honestly the best option.
i think because i have a lot of experience with this, i'm aware of the different degrees of my suicidal ideation and i know when it's just something in the back of my head and when i'm actually planning it out and on the verge of attempting. so when i know it's not a big deal i might hold it back.
but the doctors don't know that at all, they can't always know exactly what the patient may or may not do after they let them leave the office. with my first pdoc, after a suicide attempt she did nothing to ensure that i was safe, other than ask "so do you have any other plans to kill yourself soon?", and because i was so overrun with embarrassment and shame after showing her and my parents my neck, i said "no" and she sent me home just like that without saying or doing anything else. in those following few weeks i had come very close to doing it again and came close enough to warrant a trip to the ER a few months later.
my next pdoc was much more adamant in making sure i was okay and gave me a number for a helpline, for the hospital, and made me promise to come in if i needed help. i wouldn't be surprised if that first pdoc had patients who did end up offing themselves when it could have been avoided if she had just forced them to get help and made extra sure they were okay.
to people who aren't as aware of when they might be too sick, i wouldn't ever advise anyone to keep the suicidal feelings to themselves just to avoid being hospitalized.
if that was encouraged then so many lives would be lost and i know in some cases they might be overreacting, but 'better safe than sorry'.
i really think my dad wouldn't be alive right now if he hadn't spoken up to his doctor that he was planning on ending his life and admitting himself to the psych ward, despite how incredibly stubborn he is and how crummy the conditions of his hospital were.
i kind of go back and forth when i try to gauge on whether being hospitalized saved my life. i think it did in the long run, as over the years i was just sinking lower and lower and the episodes got worse and worse and i was becoming closer to death more than ever, which says a lot considering i first thought about ending my life at age 12. since those two hospitalizations i've been very slowly going uphill, which is strange to think considering how bad things were up until age 18 (spent that birthday in the hospital actually.. god how depressing) and before that i couldn't fathom ever feeling better.
anyway my openly negative feels towards it are mostly concerning the treatment methods and what they focus on in that regard as i don't think they take all of the patient's life and health into consideration.
but the main purpose for short-term hospitalization is to keep you safe from yourself and others and they usually (hopefully) succeed in doing that.