Here's the Thing

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Institutional Walls

It can take a long time for me to gain trust in people and I have a natural lack of trust when it comes to the medical profession. They make me weary. I think possibly because I saw so much of them growing up, but mostly because I had a very bad GP (and surgery) for quite a while and it left me with the belief that they really did not give a toss one way or the other.

Sadly, this means I am a bit shaky with any local services. Today, I lost my trust and belief in the local CMHT resource center. I last saw them a couple of weeks before Christmas, and spoke with my Psychotherapist, Chris, who had previously mentioned that she would discuss my case with the Occupational Therapy team and her other colleagues as Psychotherapy did not seem suitable to me. I saw Chris, and we were joined by Judith, one of the Occupational Therapists. Judith discussed my needs with me and possible reasons for my social-anxiety. She picked up on my hearing straight away and that warmed me to her.

I guess I was too gullible because of that and gave more faith than I should have.

Judith discussed having a couple of appointments to get me used to the service and an anxiety course, which would be either in January or March. As I am one to put practical suggestions to use sooner rather than later, I said I would prefer to join the January one... hence my mentioning it in previous posts. I left that appointment with the impression I would receive more information in the post, along with appointments to see Judith.

By yesterday, I had received nothing and had already been trying for a couple of weeks to get in touch with Judith, Chris or one of their colleagues.

It turns out if someone calls you from the Resource Center, it goes through a central number, and that this is the number I have always been given for the center. It also turns out that if you call a direct number and it rings over a certain number of times, it diverts to this central number.

That number is as useless as a map written in Kanji. They could not tell me who had wrung me. They claimed not to have anything to do with the course, and stated it was dealt with by a different department, who they could not put me through to, but said would call me back (they didn't).

I finally got a call this morning from Runwell Hospital. The main hub of CMHT in my local area. It is basically the Mental Hospital (yep, it used to be the old fashioned kind too) and has their appointments centre.

They informed me that they could not put me through to Judith, but would send me an Assessment Pack, which I would have to fill in to then receive a phone call to see if I even qualified to receive the service in the first place.... That I did all this before seeing the Psychotherapist was irrespective. They could not put me on the anxiety course without the forms filled in and the phone call had. The course was meant to start today, so effectively, I am not going on it anymore.

Stupid NHS red tape.

I am back to square one with the entirety of CMHT because I went through all this to get to see Chris. I am no longer seeing Chris as I was supposedly referred on to OT and am not suited for her type of therapy.

The Psychiatrist there were useless as ants in shoes (I asked for help, they said there was nothing they could do and to use coping mechanisms) and I only held out for the fact that therapy may well have been what I needed to deal with my social anxiety and the seeing things and the loosing all faith in human beings and believing they were monsters.

Maybe that is the problem? The entirety of the NHS is being run by monsters. Anyone would be hard pressed to convince me otherwise right now.

I really do have the belief that the only way anything ever gets done when it comes to MH issues is if someone rocks up to A&E having done some serious harm to themselves. It is unsurprisingly tempting and yet, the fact that I use every ounce of my strength to not do that, somehow means I will never get the help I need.

Writing this, and thinking about it is making me tearful, but I do constantly find it amazing that the NHS is unable to be more pro-active and preventative. If someone asks for help, that should mean they need it, not that they are somehow fine. There should be some acknowledgement that maybe it took a lot for that someone to ask for help in the first place and that they haven't just asked the moment the sky looked a little grey.

Frankly, I have given up on them ever doing anything to help me. Why should I put faith in an institution that does not listen to a word I say and judges me before I even say a word? Maybe that will piss of anyone that reads and works in the medical profession, but I have yet to see proof that says otherwise.

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