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Thread: Patients

  1. #1

    Default Patients

    I'm not sure if this is the correct forum (or site) for this, but here goes... I had a hearing in mental health court this afternoon. (Representing a client in an 8103(f) hearing, if anyone's curious. Hairy stuff.) I got there early, and had a front-row view of the gurneys, etc., arriving with the afternoon case load -- psychiatric patients, mostly committed involuntarily, coming to court for conservatorship hearings, extended commitment hearings, etc. Several patients were escorted in wearing locked purple polyurethane wrist-waist restraints. That is, a belt locked around their waist, with a cuff on either side (the style where the cuff is closed around the wrist by putting a metal "staple" through the appropriate slot, and then the locked belt passes through the staple, keeping the cuff closed and not permitting movement away from the belt). It looked really uncomfortable, especially for the poor souls who were in those restraints for at least the ~4 hours I was there, plus I'm sure time in transit to and from the courthouse. Another patient became uncontrolled and was surrounded by deputies in a show-of-force, before his attendant mental health staff were able to put him in tighter waist-wrist restraints and ankle hobbles, locked. He was escorted out of the smoking courtyard and I have no idea what happened next.

    On the one hand, it's a sad, disturbing place to be. People who are obviously not able to care for themselves, and/or are a clear danger to themselves or others. They arrive disheveled, wearing hospital-issue "no slip" socks or slippers, white patient identification wristbands securely affixed, in the company of at least two "handlers," with a brown sack of snacks to tide them over. They don't want to be where they are; many don't want to be anywhere. They're kept "safe" in spite of themselves.

    On the other, I found myself secretly wishing I was in their shoes, maybe just for a day, maybe just for a few hours. Not wracked with mental illness, but secure, controlled, with someone else watching out for me, making the decisions, down to whether or not I can even use my hands and if so, for what.

    I don't understand myself, a lot of the time...

  2. #2
    maffew

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    Sounds like you like a little bondage and domination, really it's not that unusual.

  3. #3
    Butterfly Mage

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    Quote Originally Posted by maffew View Post
    Sounds like you like a little bondage and domination, really it's not that unusual.
    Agreed. Wanting to be restrained does sound like a bondage thing. It's one of the more common fetishes and doesn't have nearly as much negative social stigma as it once had.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by WellPadded310 View Post
    On the other, I found myself secretly wishing I was in their shoes, maybe just for a day, maybe just for a few hours.
    Believe me, you dont want to be in their shoes, not even for a few hours! Our treatment of mental illness hasnt really changed much over the years.
    Pretty much, these people dont have to be seen by the general public, so they are forgot about. It is easy for the public to not even think about these people, if they even understand what it is like for them!
    Your pretty much treated like a slab of meat, ALL your freedoms are taken away from you and given to the people who control you. If you dont like that your freedoms are taken away, and decide to voice that, they will see that as resistence and drug you into complience. If you get mad at the mistreatment, they just give you a shot that has you sitting there drooling on yourself. You eat, sleep, crap, walk, talk, when the people controlling you want that, when they decide to pull the stings.
    It is inhuman, and does way more harm to a person then any good. There is NO treatment that is going on, just storage of people that no one wants to deal with, its as simple as that.

    Next time your walking down the street and you notice the homeless people, just think about how we forget about, and ignore the homeless, then remember that those homeless are living a grand life in comparisson to the "meat" they store in the psychiatric centers, the group homes, etc.

    This is not just a opinion, but my experience being in these sort of places. My life is happy and free now, but I live everyday with fear that one of these days I am going to be forced to live in one of those places.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by maffew View Post
    Sounds like you like a little bondage and domination, really it's not that unusual.
    Yeah, I get that. I just don't understand why. What's the genesis?

    I mean, most of the time I must be in full control. I only drive stick-shifts, and require that traction control, if present, be easily disabled. I fly. I ride motorcycles. I won't use an operating system without a competent text-based shell. (C R Y P T O N O M I C O N) I think I went into law so I could better understand the workings of power, and use them to my (and my clients') advantage. Etc.

    So why would I look at a psychiatric patient, under lock and key, without even the basic freedom of mobility, so longingly? My brain wiring makes no sense to me. I've tried to discuss it with therapists and no one seems to have any ideas (those that aren't afraid to "go there" in the first place).

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by racer View Post
    Believe me, you dont want to be in their shoes, not even for a few hours! Our treatment of mental illness hasnt really changed much over the years.
    Pretty much, these people dont have to be seen by the general public, so they are forgot about. It is easy for the public to not even think about these people, if they even understand what it is like for them!
    Your pretty much treated like a slab of meat, ALL your freedoms are taken away from you and given to the people who control you. If you dont like that your freedoms are taken away, and decide to voice that, they will see that as resistence and drug you into complience. If you get mad at the mistreatment, they just give you a shot that has you sitting there drooling on yourself. You eat, sleep, crap, walk, talk, when the people controlling you want that, when they decide to pull the stings.
    It is inhuman, and does way more harm to a person then any good. There is NO treatment that is going on, just storage of people that no one wants to deal with, its as simple as that.

    Next time your walking down the street and you notice the homeless people, just think about how we forget about, and ignore the homeless, then remember that those homeless are living a grand life in comparisson to the "meat" they store in the psychiatric centers, the group homes, etc.

    This is not just a opinion, but my experience being in these sort of places. My life is happy and free now, but I live everyday with fear that one of these days I am going to be forced to live in one of those places.
    Funny you say that. When those same people have delusional fantasies and decide to kill their neighbour's children because the voice in their head told them too, at least they were "free" when it happened.

    Some people can't be trusted with freedom.*

    N.B. I said SOME.

  7. #7
    maffew

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    I don't think the OP wants to be in the same shoes as the psych patients, he just wants to surrender all power and choice to someone else for a brief time, not unlike many adult babies who want to be treated like a two year old and have all choices made for them by a caretaker, it's an escape from ourselves, and always having to be in control.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zephiel View Post
    Funny you say that. When those same people have delusional fantasies and decide to kill their neighbour's children because the voice in their head told them too, at least they were "free" when it happened.

    Some people can't be trusted with freedom.*

    N.B. I said SOME.
    You know better then what you said, you know that only a few of those people are violent, so to say that a whole population deserves to have there freedom taken away because of a few people.... not sure why you are always trying to start something with me?
    Last edited by racer; 28-Sep-2010 at 02:28.

  9. #9
    maffew

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    And by the way the treatment of the mentally I'll has improved somewhat in the last century, at least we don't lobotomize or use electro shock therapy like we use too, yes we still use a form of shock treatment but it's nowhere near the same therapy and tends to be humane.

  10. #10
    Butterfly Mage

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    For what it's worth, I've been in a situation where I had a pretty bad breakdown in my dissociative disorder (this was 15 years ago). When you're hospitalized for mental illness and self-inflicted injuries, you get treated like utter garbage. Seriously. My illness has been pretty stable for many years (thanks to having a really good counselor as well as me having a *very* strong desire to be as psychologically functional as possible). But I would never, ever, let myself get hospitalized again. Criminals are treated with greater compassion.

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