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Anonymity at A&E(70 Posts)
I know this is a bit of a weird question, and I've namechanged to ask it because I'm paranoid.
Does anyone know if you can remain anonymous if you go to A&E? I mean, will they treat you if you don't want to tell them your name? I've tried googling, but nothing definitive is coming up.
Is there a reason you'd feel the need to do this?
Are you okay?
I would imagine that you could use a different name and a c/o address?
Without going into too much detail, I have something that may need treating, and A&E is probably the sensible option. I don't want this to make it onto my medical records, don't want my GP etc to be involved, so I'd need it to remain anonymous.
I've never been to A&E as an adult, and I don't know how it works.
If I used a c/o address, are they likely to post anything there? I don't want to cause trouble for whoever actually lives at whatever address I pick.
I'm guessing, seeing as you've posted on here, that it's self harm related. Are you okay, OP?
In my honest opinion, to lie would be foolish. It would not only add extra complications for you, but for the hospital as well, should something go 'wrong' in your treatment.
Yes, you can be treated - you could refuse to give details and would be given a code, you could give false details, or incomplete information and no one would know. Treating you would be the priority.
However, it is not advisable and may affect the quality and consistency of the care provided.
I hadn't even thought about it being complicated for the hospital too. That's definitely not what I want.
I'm a horrible liar anyway, far too anxious and paranoid to really carry it off, so that clinches it as being a rubbish idea. I just thought that it'd be one less thing to worry about; no repercussions.
SirBoob, thank you for asking, I'll be fine. Yes, SH-related. I know that they would have asked me about sui thoughts as well, and I wouldn't be able to lie to someone's face about them, so I think it's best to self-treat.
Thank you all for the advice, I appreciate it.
If its not treatable at home please go to A&E. They do not judge you. They have seen it before and know people are scared of going for assistance
I hope you are ok.
Are you alone or have you family/ friends with you who can hold your hand and support you?
I have wondered this before. I think it would be difficult because they ask for your address and DOB and GP etc. I think making things up/refusing to give information would make them more concerned for your welfare.
It is your right to only be treated for your physical problems, you can refuse to see any MH services while you are there. You don't even have to tell them it is SI.
Please don't worry about going to A&E, I have been a lot and it is always OK. The staff don't really get too involved.
It's not life-threatening. Probably need stitches really, but I can dress them myself.
I don't have friends/family (well, I have family, but I live alone and they don't know about this sort of thing) but I don't need any IRL support.
I hadn't thought through about making them concerned for my welfare or anything, that's definitely not what I want. I wouldn't tell them it was SH, but it's obvious from the rest of my skin what I've done previously, so wouldn't be a leap for them to figure it out. I couldn't deal with the questions.
I am a pretty closed book at A&E. I just say "I have support at home thank you, I don't need to speak to someone" etc etc. When they ask me what happened I do say it was SI but I usually just say I had a bad day, i don't go into details.
If you need stitches you need stitches, it is a pain because things won't heal if they are not closed properly.
Please go to A&E for treatment, they will be more vl
Sorry stupid phone!
More concerned with getting you treatment than anything else, I've never had paperwork him from a &e care, they will follow up with GP if you give details but they won't push for them,
It should be alright without stitching, I panicked a little when it didn't stop bleeding, but I've dressed it and that has helped.
I often don't properly close (admittedly smaller) wounds, and they're fine, I very rarely get infections (I know that sounds horrible, I know how bad improper wound care can be, but I don't feel like I deserve to look after wounds I've self-inflicted).
If this post is too graphic, please say and I'll delete, or report it for deletion.
I don't have the nerve to go to A&E anymore anyway, it's quite far to get there as I don't drive, and I get really anxious around people, especially if they're asking personal questions. Far too scared that they'd ask if I was suicidal, then not let me leave the hospital.
Thank you all for being so kind.
Hope you are ok. I'm sure there must be something they can do if you refuse to give details as they will still want to treat you. if the bleeding gets worse please get some medical help. Really hope you are feeling better soon
They will let you leave the hospital
Take care of yourself. x
Thank you both. It's dressed, I'm good at pressure dressings and no blood has come through, so it's fine. Still open, but it'll heal, I should think.
I can't do anything else now. I'm actually amazed at myself that I even thought about hospital, I think I would have come undone at actually going there.
I'm aware of how self-indulgent this is, but my god, I do wish things were easier. It would be very nice to want to be alive. I hate myself for needing to SH again whilst I'm still being pathetic over the last ones I did.
Your are not being self-indulgent CC, you sound quite sensible about what is, as I'm sure you are aware, an illness.
Why don't you want your GP to know if you don't mind me asking?
I can't cope with RL people pretending they care, it's too awful. I don't want to be on tablets again and I can't deal with talking about how I feel IRL. It's all so horribly awkward and fake.
I don't have an illness, I'm just hateful.
People do care - they honestly wouldn't be in these jobs if they didn't. I understand how you feel though, and it took me a long time to be willing to trust anyone professionally.
And with respect... If you're SI enough to consider needing stitches, you struggle being surrounded by people, you're having all these horrible thoughts about yourself... I would suggest that you are ill. And there is no shame in that.
It can be hard if you've had a negative experience with professionals before, but things aren't always the same way as they were that first time.
I'm slightly concerned for your well being OP.
You sound like you know what to do re wound care, make sure it's kept clean, change the dressings etc. Hope it heals soon.
I can't cope with RL people pretending they care, it's too awful.
Do you care for anyone OP? Do you love anyone and not want them to suffer hurt? Is that awful?
This is an illness CC. And it's your GP's job to offer treatment for your illness. It's your job to value yourself as the unique, wonderful person you are and to seek out that treatment and find a way out of the painful feelings and thoughts you are torturing yourself with.
You have taken the first tiny baby step of posting on here for some advice. I think that indicates that deep down you do probably recognise that you could do with a bit of help just now. There is nothing awkward or shameful about that. I expect that you have helped people in the past at some time? Now it's your turn to get a bit of help.
Please think about it OP. Think about making an appointment on Monday to see your GP. Choose to try to be happier and enjoy life more.
I've never actually had a positive experience with healthcare professionals. In my experience, they've just made things worse. I'm terrible at therapy/counselling, I literally cannot talk about personal matters.
I can't talk to my current GP. I've been very lucky in the past to have understanding GPs (hence medication/previous attempts at therapy/psych services), but my current one is not like that. There's not another female GP at the practice, and not another practice within walking distance.
I was on ADs when I moved here, and she stopped them, told me they weren't necessary and I just needed more B vitamins and more exercise (so I'm obviously not ill, or she wouldn't have done that). Admittedly never told her about SH/suicide attempts & thoughts (though some mention is made of SH in my notes from years ago), because I don't think I'd be able to make her understand. She's a very good doctor in all other respects, just not about MH matters.
I genuinely don't think that I need input from MH services, there's not much point anyway when I can't talk about how I feel. I'd be wasting their time.
I am good at wound care when I do it, which I am doing this time. I did think I might need some practical help last night, but I'm more confident today that I can self-treat, at least to avoid an infection.
Thank you both, I'm sorry to have been a nuisance.
A minor injuries unit or a walk in centre is often best place for gluing or stitches as:
Usually they do test you with nurses so less questions asked
No on site psych's so no referral to them before you can leave
Some units do not have dr's and less chance of referral to health visitors etc
You can always see a practise nurse at gp's Mon-fri. Not always have to go to a&e if it helps.
You have not been a nuisance! That's the glory of mn, if you don't feel like posting on a thread you don't have to.
If your GP is
crap not very understanding of mh issues then why not just ask for a referral? You don't have to tell her much, just that you are sh and want a referral. You can even say 'I'd prefer not to discuss it now but would like to see a specialist'. You have the right to ask for a referral. It is not really the GP's decision.
When you see a specialist your starting point might be to explain that you really don't want to talk about your issues. If you can discuss your fears and worries around that problem to begin with then you might be able to move on to getting some real help.
You sound as though you have accepted sh and the pain that leads to it. It doesn't have to be like this CC. You can get help with the feelings and thoughts that lead to sh. Would you want to stop sh if you could?
I hadn't thought of minor injuries, I don't know if there is one at my nearest hospital, but definitely something to bear in mind.
I've SH'ed for a long time, since I was 12 (I'm mid-20's now). I don't think I would stop, it helps with nearly every negative emotion I have, and is the only thing that feels 'right'. I don't often even have a trigger for doing it, I just get the idea that I should SH, and have to act on it.
It's also the only way I can avoid a suicide attempt. It doesn't always work, and I attempt anyway, but it's the only thing that even has a chance at stopping that thought process.
The GP really isn't crap, she's very medically competent about other things and quite astute. I have no idea if she's different with other people and their MH. It could easily just be that she just sees that I'm not worth her time, and so is dismissive. I don't know if I could take the risk of seeing a specialist, I get weird about rejection, and since I wouldn't be able to actually talk to them, they'd just tell me to go away.
Little worried that they'd send people to my house too, which would make me panic as my house is my little safe-zone, and having other people in it would destroy that.
I don't think that there's anything that anyone could do to really change anything. I know it sounds really self-indulgent and 'woe is me' but, I'm just not worth very much. I'm not much of a person, and I'm definitely not deserving of anyone's time or help (even more so if my using said time/help means that someone else is deprived of it).
You are worthy. You might not see it. But you are.
And the fact you cannot see it means you are deffo worth a helping hand to make it evident to you.
You don't have to share on here. But there's some lovely helpful people on here if you do. Huge range of experiences and stories. And it just can help to know you are not alone.
Why not do some research and find out where nearest minor injuries unit is. Often not in city hospitals but often in smaller cottage style hospitals or in smaller towns. Or even in walk in centres. May be less frightening for you as they do not have approved social workers or mental health teams available as they do at a&e departments and they can do stitches etc.
That may give you a more positive attitude towards professionals and be a small step forwards for you.
What activities do you to that helps you feel more valued and have self worth? You do not have to see mental health professionals for that. Fr instance I have just started a yoga class to give me sme me time, because I can get value from spending time on me, doing something for me. It's all little steps and does not have to start with gp's if that is not where you are at. Finding a friend to confide in is a route for others.
I've had a look, and found an MIU relatively near me. Only open until 8pm, so wouldn't have been useful last night, but at least I know it's there for the future, should I ever get the nerve to visit.
I don't really know what things I would do to feel valued. I don't get any real enjoyment from anything, so I seem to spend a lot of my time just either killing time, or doing things because I know I should.
I don't have any friends. I don't mean that melodramatically, and it's not something I really think about. I don't want friends/relationships, I can't deal with that level of closeness, and how much pressure is involved.
I really struggle with how fake things are, and as much as I force myself to do things, they never change. I was working by "fake it till you make it", in the hope that I'd gradually start to enjoy what I was doing, but it's never happened. I think it's just because I'm boring.
In my experience A and E are very demanding about details and the forms to fill out, because of so many people who aren't entitled getting the treatment. A minor injuries centre seems like a better idea if it comes up again.
I'm very sorry for you Cyancloud. It is one of the greatest achievements on this great good earth to be content with yourself. It sounds like you're discontented with yourself because you don't want to do what other people want to do, and don't really want to do what you think you ought to be doing. Too often we feel we should be this, or should be that, or the other, and then we measure ourselves up to a standard or to other people's standards and find ourselves wanting. Nobody should do this. I'm sure you don't need to; you aren't boring, you're articulate, and sound self-contained, and shouldn't feel the need to fake things, and it's a shame that you do. It's quite enough in life to be quiet and not be a bad person and to be kind. Lots of people (me included) go to social occasions when we'd rather be, I don't know, watching an old Morse video in our pjs or going for a walk or to the library and it wastes such a lot of time to do things "one ought" instead of what would be nicest for you. Good luck dear.
I didn't want to read this & not post. I don't really have any advice, other than to be sure you get medical help for the wound. I have had similar problems & get very panicky about what will happen & how much I should/ shouldn't say.
MN is a good place to talk, if you need to. People are always here & will listen.
Please look after yourself.
Thank you both (and all).
It was a therapist I saw once (a couple of years ago) who told me to 'fake it till I make it', the idea being that I was doing enjoyable activities, I just wasn't open to actually enjoying them. It has yet to work, and I find it exhausting to keep doing said activities (and I'm not talking anything strenuous; exercise, TV, reading, films) with the constant pressure to enjoy them. I have very little energy, and I need to spend it constructively instead of forcing myself to read a book and lie to myself that I'm interested and enjoying it.
The SH will be fine; it's clean, with no signs of infection, and I've changed the dressing without interfering with it.
I've long since accepted suicide as an inevitability. It's constantly on my mind, and is only ever something that I'm 'putting off', rather than eradicating as an option. I know it will sound strange and morbid to a lot of people, but having it as an accepted option is such a relief at times. Life itself seems fake, and hollow, partly because I know how it's going to end up. I don't feel sad about it. I don't think I'm entirely real. The best way I can describe it, is as though I'm a character in a game and I'm going through the motions. (Please someone say if saying this is inappropriate and I'll report).
Sorry if this doesn't make sense, I'm going to post before I delete.
Oh you poor thing. This is terrible. The faking it doesn't seem to work at all. Do you like anything? Do you like being on your own in a nice clean house and reading a book, little things like that? Do you like things that other people think are boring so you feel you aren't allowed to like them?
"Life itself seems fake, and hollow, partly because I know how it's going to end up."
This is a very intense way of expressing your feelings but I accept that this is how you feel right now. Are you able to explore how much you have felt this way before? Sometimes when we are very unhappy we feel unable to imagine that we have ever felt differently but critical reflection means that we can identify times when we have felt differently. If that is the case for you then maybe there is a possibly different future available which involves working on finding out what links those times when you have found life more meaningful.
"I don't think I'm entirely real. The best way I can describe it, is as though I'm a character in a game and I'm going through the motions."
This is very common to people who are profoundly unhappy. It is called depersonalisation. If you talk to any trained mental health professional from a psychiatric nurse to a psychiatrist they will recognise it. It is a terrible experience though and some people who self-harm say they need to do it to keep the depersonalisation under control and remind themselves that they are real.
Honestly, I think you have severe depression and only a really skilled psychiatrist will be able to assess you and help to put together a treatment package that will address your unhappiness and your self-harm which might include more meds and more talking therapies and you will need to talk frankly about why you feel these things did not help enough before. You can either see your current GP again or try registering with a different practice to access specialist mental health services. Going to A&E for help if you feel the need to self-harm would be another route. But be aware that no GP can diagnose a mental illness if you don't tell them about all of the symptoms you are experiencing. Which will be really hard.
As for what you are worth, you are worth as much as me, or my beautiful daughter whom I love most in the world, or anyone else. No one has more or less claim than you to be helped.
There are a few TV shows that I like (all, annoyingly, are between seasons at the moment), and films. I have a short attention span, and struggle with books because I end up forgetting what's happened. I watch films in stages, because my mind wanders if I'm just watching a film for more than half an hour or so.
I do like for things to be clean, but it's not so much than I like the cleanliness, more that I hate things being dirty. So, I clean, not to achieve a state where I am happy, but to get rid of a state where I'm panicked and obsessive.
I can't really think of anything else that I like. That sounds ridiculous, like I don't know my own mind.
It was years ago that I accepted that suicide was inevitable. I've had periods where I'm desperate to die, and so attempt to do so, and periods where it's just "there"; a constant thought, but not acted upon. I know it sounds bad to other people, but it doesn't really elicit any emotion from me anymore.
I don't know if I'm depressed. I'm able to get out of bed, I very rarely cry (usually only at those awful pdsa-type adverts or similar) and I don't feel very sad all the time. I hate myself, but that's not because of an illness, that's because of the person I am.
I know it sounds utterly pathetic, but I can't do a talking therapy. I just can't. It's so triggering, and I get so anxious, I end up worse than when I started. I don't have anything to talk about, other than to whinge about current feelings which isn't going to do anything. When I saw my last therapist, I was overdosing the night before each session in the hope that I'd die and wouldn't have to go.
Thank you both for being so kind. I know that I'm being obstructive when you're giving good advice, and it's not intentional. I never really intended for this thread to go this far when I started it. I'm very grateful, but I'm wasting everyone's time when I'm not able to act on the advice that's given.
You are not being obstructive CC, you are telling us how you feel. We asked. You are not wasting anyone's time. We can just log off if we are not interested!
I'm a bit alarmed to read of your suicidal feelings and attempts tbh. I really think you need urgent help. Do you know, even if you just printed this thread out and took it to your GP, or sent them an email link, it would probably get the ball rolling for you.
I can now see why talking therapies would be worse than useless for you. You need much more skilled specialist help.
It's not obstructive, you feel the way you feel, and that's the way you feel. I don't think you should hate yourself - you're not a hateful person are you. You're not a bad person or an unkind person or a wicked person. Have you ever read even just on this site the hundred thousand small ways some people make other people's lives a misery? That's not you. Feeling inadequate because you aren't the way you think you should be is not a reason for hating yourself and it's not even a reason for feeling inadequate. Most people are caught up in themselves. I'm a bit worried because you sound so, so sad and I'm not qualified to be giving any kind of advice. However I'm now going to give my favourite kind of advice, and you are of course totally free to "reject" or pshaw it! It's about vitamins. I don't mean like, St John's wort or something herbal like that, I mean folic acid, zinc and B6. Zinc can help with concentration, B6 can help with a general feeling of energy and folic acid, I think that's just all round wonderful. They might make you feel a tiny bit better. It's just, doctors and therapists don't normally think about vitamins when someone is very down, and I think they're pretty marvellous. You sound nice, and I'm sorry everything feels so rotten for you.
Thank you both. I always feel like I need to apologise to people when they speak to me for any prolonged length of time.
I can't tell anyone about the suicidal thoughts/attempts, definitely not my GP. I can't talk about it. I really don't think that they're symptomatic of an illness. Talking about them doesn't make them go away, medication doesn't make them go away. Every time I've tried to access help in the past, it's been therapy/counselling, and it doesn't do anything but make me feel worse.
I don't know if you need to do anything wicked to be hateful. It would be arrogant in the extreme for me to like myself, when there's nothing about me that's actually likeable. Please don't take that as me asking you to list likeable adjectives, it's not a fishing attempt.
I definitely wouldn't reject anyone's advice, though I understand why it looks that way. I already take a multivitamin every day, just had a look at the box and it says that it contains at least 100% RDA of B6, Folic Acid and Zinc.
There's absolutely no need for anyone to be worried about me, I feel horribly guilty about that. I know you can't tell people what to worry about, but please don't.
I think not wanting to talk about this is a very valid response. What you are describing sounds very overwhelming even when written down. If I try to imagine what it might feel like to talk about those feelings to someone who might not understand me I imagine feeling quite terrified. At the moment you know you are isolated, and you feel unreal and worthless but that is OK because you have found strategies for handling those emotions and can therefore cope with them. If you try and explain these emotions to anyone else you run the risk of having to experience them all over again in a setting which is not safe, and where you may have to suffer acute emotional pain and there is no guarantee that you will feel safer and suffer less pain at the end.
And you have already experienced not being understood when you have tried to explain this situation to people so it is not irrational to expect that people will not understand you if you try again.
Conversely there is no way to get beyond the place you are currently that does not involve taking that risk of talking to someone and possibly experiencing some pain. So the trick will be working out how to make that risk as small as possible. Talking here. Or anywhere else where you feel safe and can just articulate what is happening with no one expecting you to actually do or be anything other than you are may help. The Samaritans and various online self-harm support organisations might be able to help you too.
If you want to keep saying what is happening and how you are feeling so we can trying to help you find ways to move forward beyond this point then please do. But you don't owe anyone here anything and you do not need to feel guilty if you do not want to talk.
PenelopePipPop, your first paragraph is exactly it. I've tried explaining it (though not nearly as articulately as you just did) and MH professionals don't seem to get it. They talk about how I have to "trust" them, but I don't. No-one just instinctively trusts other people, realistically. It has to be earned. I've never spent long enough with one professional to know whether I can actually trust them, the longest I've seen one person for is about 6 months.
I've used online SH sites before. I used to post on a forum on one of them, but stopped because it was too triggering and I started feeling uncomfortable/unwanted/paranoid. I know it would make sense to try again, but I've found those places to be very full-on. I've emailed the Samaritans in the past as well, though I didn't find that useful, as they just seemed to repeat my own words back to me.
I feel that continuing to talk is wasting everyone's time, because I know that I should tell someone medical in RL, but I can't. It's not just that it's difficult, or that I don't want to, I physically can't; the words stick in my throat and I freeze. I know I could write it down, but I know myself well enough to know that I'd never be able to hand it over. It feels too manipulative and attention-seeking to talk about how I feel when it's so negative.
You must be able to articulate something about your experience because I did understand you. I don't self-harm and I have worked in mental health services as an advocate but I'm not a mental health professional of any description.
So based on what you described one person could imagine a little bit of how you were feeling. Only a tiny bit and I don't think for a minute I know how to make you feel differently. But it was possible to make a connection in a place that felt safe. It is theoretically possible but hard.
I agree that trust is not automatic. I think though that the people who were telling you to trust them were expressing themselves very badly and did not literally mean that you should trust them. Even people who feel very confident and happy about life don't just trust people because they are told to, they trust people because they are confident those people will honour their trust and in life up to that point they have not been disappointed much which is lovely for them - a lot of people with mental health needs do not have that luxury. I think the people you spoke to really wanted you to behave as if you trusted them, open up and speak about your feelings even though that is hard and generally give them the opportunity to try and understand your situation. There is no conceivable way anyone, no matter how trustworthy, committed to you and skilled at helping you can actually help you unless you take that step. And it is the hardest step of all.
I think you write very well. If you printed off your posts on this thread and wrote to your GP explaining that you could not see her in person but would like a referral to the CMHT based on these feelings I am pretty certain she would act upon it (though she might want to try and talk to you too).
Would you like to try antidepressants? You could talk to your gp and say you have tried counselling in the past and do not want it right now, but would consider medication? Talking therapy is not for everyone and if you would not use it then it is not the right time for you. Sadly on the NHS talking therapy is rationed, so if you have it now and don't make use of it you cannot necessarily have it later when you might make use of it. Perhaps a time on medication would help you feel more able to make use of counselling.
I think OP has already been on meds Hoop.
CC it is precisely because your feelings and thoughts are so negative that they are so painful and harmful to you. And when you are in pain and suffering then you have the right to expect treatment. That is not manipulative or attention-seeking. It is just getting some help.
Lots of people fought for the NHS so that no one had to suffer in silence. Please, please feel that you, just as much as me, the Queen ... or anyone else, has the right to get help from the NHS
I think if you were referred to a really good specialist (who might not be local) then your experience of treatment might be very different to the one you had of talking therapy.
I know you don't think getting better and feeling happier is possible right now, but it really is. You won't always feel like this. It might be a long road but you will feel better eventually. Why not try and make that happen sooner?
I understand what you mean about professionals wanting me to act as if I trusted them, by speaking honestly. For me though, that would require actual trust, not just hoping for the best. I know that professionals tend to over-react (or perhaps it's just an appropriate reaction and I read it as being too much) when you mention suicide, so I've learned not to talk about it for fear of what they'll do.
I've been on a few different types of ADs in the past. None of them really did a great deal. Since the reason I came off them last time was because the GP said they weren't necessary, I can't ask her for them again, because she'll just say the same thing.
I don't know what kind of specialist I would need to see. I don't want to address the SH, at least not head-on. It's a symptom of how I feel, not the cause. I've never been offered anything other than talking therapies, so I think that may be all my CMHT does.
I can't help thinking that there is more being made of this than there should be. I'm genuinely not ill. I don't have an illness. It feels too overwhelming that you all seem to think that I do. I don't feel ok at all.
If illness is not the right way to understand this that is fine. Depression is just a word. A very commonly used word to describe people who feel intensely unhappy and hopeless and sometimes as if they are not real. That does not mean we have to call ourselves depressed when we feel this way or that feeling this way means we are ill.
What is true is that this is a terrible way to feel, and perhaps exhausting and frightening at times too. One way to try and address these feelings is to seek medical help. For most people most of the time this is the kind of help most likely to make a difference. But some people find solace in spiritual practices or simply in finding their own mode of living that helps them balance the fear and hopelessness with the things that they find comforting and sustaining. You have choices here. Personally reading your posts I would strongly recommend you try seeking medical help first because I think that is most likely to help you. But if it does not that does not mean there will not be other avenues to explore too.
"I don't feel ok at all."
That is what matters. You do not feel OK.
If you want to talk about your fears of what professionals might do if you talk about suicide please do. Is that a significant fear that is holding you back from talking about this? As before you only have to talk about what you are comfortable with.
I've tried some spiritual things before. I tried meditation, but I don't have the ability to turn my mind off. That 'empty, lack of thought' state is impossible, because I have too many intrusive thoughts that just force their way in there. I do yoga, but don't find it relaxing. I've read a lot about religion, but I lack any belief in a higher being, and as much as I try, I can't change that.
I know that the sensible thing to do is speak to my GP. I can't. I just can't. It would be too awful. I feel sick even thinking about it.
Re: fears around discussing suicide, I'm mostly scared of hospital admission. I know it's a last resort, and can be beneficial for a lot of people, but there is no way I would cope being surrounded by people everyday. I need to be alone, I have my little routines that get me through the day and I need to feel like I'm in control. I'm also scared of the crisis team, because I know they come to your house. Being forced to see people would make me incredibly anxious.
Thank you for talking to me so much, I know I'm frustrating.
I appreciate you find books hard to focus on but a book you might want to have a look at is A Book of Silence by Sarah Maitland. It isn't about depression, or spirituality and it definitely isn't a self-help book. It is just about a woman who realised she liked a quiet life. Really really quiet so she set about exploring how to achieve the quietest life she could and thinking about why silence and having space to reflect was so important to her. You can dip in and out of it, it shouldn't be triggering, it isn't about how to get better, it is just about how to be.
I found it quite comforting when I had a very short and intense episode of depression a year ago and like you needed not to talk sometimes to have space to recover. I don't think our situations are the same because it sounds like you have been suffering for much longer than I did. But maybe you'll find thinking about space and silence helpful too.
The crisis team only come during crises which for you will mean if you are suicidal. I think if you are at that point then your deep unhappiness may well overwhelm your anxiety about letting people in (or at least you'll be so unhappy you won't be able to distinguish your anxiety from the overall awfulness of the situation). They will not judge or bully you. They will respect your space and your dignity and try and listen as carefully as they can to what you are saying. They may want you to come into hospital. They may not. And yes they can use legal powers to get you into hospital if you do not consent and I can understand why that is frightening. Most people who are detained in hospital under the Mental Health Act are admitted for less than 14 days in total. But those 14 days are tough.
Have you been in hospital before or visited friends in a psychiatric hospital? You are right of course, there would be people around and you cannot follow all of the routines that help you feel safe at home. But it isn't anything like a general hospital ward and nothing like you'll have seen on TV. You will be able to do your own activities during the day, you can spend time alone if you need to and if you are not detained under the Mental Health Act (and the vast majority of patients are not) then you can leave the ward.
Going into hospital isn't necessary or a good idea for you. It scares you and I cannot imagine it would help you. It would only arise if a healthcare professional was concerned that you were at a serious risk of harming yourself and were not going to access appropriate treatment at home. In your case that is unlikely, for example you have already taken anti-depressants in the past and you only stopped because your GP stopped prescribing them. It would be wrong for me to say it could never happen but in my experience a very very large proportion of people with mental health needs (not just depression) talk about suicide, only a small proportion need treatment in hospital and only a small proportion of those are detained patients who are there against their will.
A good place to find more information would be the Mind website which has lots of information sheets about rights and access to services.
I do not find you frustrating.
I'll have a look for that book, thank you. I'd love to be one of those people who is sociable and outgoing and likes parties, but I'm just not. Never have been, and however much I've tried to force it, it's always been very anxiety-provoking and ultimately makes me feel lonely. I just can't cope with other people.
I don't know if I would want to be stopped/helped when I'm actively suicidal. I've never once sought medical attention/tried to access help when I've attempted suicide before.
It's hard to explain the difference between the two suicidal states. Most of the time, it's just thinking about it, and I would be quite happy to die, but I don't feel like I have to act on it. The rest of the time, I need to make some kind of attempt, I desperately want to die and wouldn't be able to be honest about how I was feeling in case I was stopped.
I know that if I told professionals about the first 'state', it would probably be ok. The second state though, would probably be classed as me being at risk, and that's where I get worried. I know as well, that if I told them about the first state, they would be inclined to ask about suicide attempts and I don't think I could lie about them. There have been quite a few, some very recent.
The other thing that makes me think that professionals might class me as being at risk, is because I overdose quite regularly as a form of SH. They're not large enough to be classed as a suicide attempt, nor is there suicidal intent behind them. It's just an alternative form of SH. I've never told anyone, never sought medical attention but I know how it would sound to an MH person.
I can't see that any good would come from disclosing any of that to anyone IRL. At most, they'd prevent me from suicide attempts/ODs, but that's not going to change anything.
I have known people who have been detained on psychiatric wards. None of them have ever spoken positively about the experience, and one of them went on to successfully kill herself afterwards. I've never actually visited one though.
I don't know if half of that has made sense. I feel triggered and anxious, and I don't want to re-read it. Sorry if it's a babble. I've bookmarked the Mind site and will have a look soon but I can't focus at the minute. I find myself incredibly frustrating but thank you for saying that you don't, and thank you so much for being so understanding.
Just to reassure you that hospital is a real last resort. Partly due to lack if beds and the fact that resources are so limited. Honestly they do everything to keep people out of hospital, even if one is suicidal or attempts suicide they are not necessarily kept in a psych hospital. Most hospitals do not have talking therapies or help available, it is a place of safety etc.
I have talked of suicide many times and not been admitted. You say CMHT teams only offer talking therapies. They can offer occupational therapists, social workers and nurses to support people. Talking therapies are rarely long, long term so it is hard to trust in time limited circumstances and often why talking therapy is not always offered until someone can make use of it. There are group therapies, some places do art therapy or life skill groups. Medication can be discussed and monitored.
Alternatively have you looked into any charities in your area offering support such as mind or rethink or other local org's? Websites like livinglifetothefull or mood gym can be a use perhaps?
I didn't mean that all CMHT's only offer talking therapy, but I think mine might, because it's all I've ever been offered. I can think of a handful of (probably paranoid) reasons why they might let me think that. I've seen a CPN for assessments before, but they've always recommended talking therapies, which I try to do, and inevitably fail at. I appreciate this is my fault for being unable to tell them everything, and then just being crap at talking about anything. Actually, I appreciate that the whole thing is my fault, and I need to suck it up and get on with it.
I tried doing the moodgym CBT thing, but didn't really understand it. It didn't make any sense to me, just felt totally patronising and fake.
I don't know about any charities. I think there are probably offices in the nearest city, but I can't get there. I'll have a look at Mind/Rethink and see what they do.
I think talking therapy is often better than a Cpn. My Cpn just supervises medication, compliance and risk assessment, no talking or support!! Do you have a diagnosis, as often much depends on what diagnosis is as to what offered by CMHT's. would it help to see a psychiatrist as your gp can refer you to one?
I'm not ill. Had diagnoses in the past but now I'm not ill. GP wouldn't have stopped my last lot of meds if she thought I was ill, so I take that to mean that diagnoses are now null and void.
I definitely don't need to see a psychiatrist.
A psychiatrist can help people who struggle with self harm, that was the only reason I suggest it. Sorry.
CyanCloud I have been keeping up with this since you originally posted.
I would agree that you are not unwell in the way the medical model considers being unwell, but I do think you have mental health problems that can be tackled.
Talking therapy covers a huge range of things really, from day to day coping skills to dealing with the reasons you feel as you do. I have seen a psychologist at my CMHT and I currently see my CPN. She does do therapy with me, I am doing something called Compassionate Mind at the moment which helps. I find that CMHT have a more longer term, recovery based approach, you are not limited to the prescribed 6 weeks sessions that your GP service might offer. My CPN helps me to look at both longer term and short term stuff, we look at my immediate risk and at the stuff that will make my life better forever.
The crisis team will see you away from home, they have offered to meet me in cafes before. Hospital is a last resort, and one rarely considered for people who are not psychotic.
Some of the things you talk about make me wonder about whether you have some elements of borderline personality disorder. The sense of not feeling worthy, self harm and suicidal thoughts. I am not saying you have it, but it might be worth exploring this sort of area. I can relate to some of these feelings, and I can certainly relate to the self harming (including overdosing) and I have a BPD diagnosis.
Reading your thoughts about feeling you have failed at talking therapies make me wonder if you explored that within your therapy. It can be useful to examine or discuss feeling unable to be honest in therapy. Part of therapy is the relationship with the person you speak to and part of the work can be around building and developing this. It is not your fault that you find it hard, it is normal and human to find talking about personal issues hard. Sometimes I go and see my CPN and don't talk about anything and sometimes I go and we have twenty minutes of great discussion.
I have generally found attitudes in A&E and in MH services to be really good about SI, generally people accept it is a coping strategy and accept when you don't feel ready to stop. I think they can struggle to understand that an OD is SI, but equally I have been believed when I say it is not a suicide attempt and that has been respected. I always refuse to see the crisis team at A&E, it is respected. I rarely discuss my MH issues with doctors or nurses and it is respected. They value me being safe and looked after over pushing me into situations which make me uncomfortable and might stop me attending for treatment.
I don't agree with your idea that being taken off medication doesn't mean you have any problems. If you read the guidelines for BPD it actually states that medication is not necessary.
This is long and rambling. Take care of yourself.
Sorry, I didn't mean to be rude, I can't focus and my head is too full. I just don't need to see a psychiatrist because I'm not ill. Seen two in the past anyway and they never actually did anything except take notes of what I said, then write contradictory letters.
Not long and rambling at all, fluffy, thank you.
Re: the crisis team. I can't go to places like cafes because I get too panicky, but am sure there'd be a middle ground if they were happy not to come to the house.
I don't know anything about borderline personality disorder. I would say that it should have been picked up on, but since I'm never entirely honest, it probably wouldn't have been.
I've never discussed being bad at therapy in therapy. I didn't even know you could. I've always had a few sessions, then the therapist's said it's obviously not helping because I can't talk about anything, and ended it.
I would never seek medical attention after an OD, not least of all because I wouldn't physically be able to walk to the hospital after one.
I feel really bad that I'm not giving your post the kind of reply it deserves. I can't think properly at the minute. I can't describe it without being melodramatic and pathetic.
Thank you all for talking to me (and sorry for the double post).
Yes, there is a middle ground Basically, they will find places that are acceptable for you. They do come to my house but that is my choice because I feel safe and comfortable here.
You can talk to therapists about your feelings about it. I often talk to my CPN about my relationship with her and my worries and fears about my treatment. Some of the work they can do is about helping you to engage with them and helping you to open up. The MIND website has useful information about BPD and it might be worth a read when you feel ready.
No overdose is safe, and the effects can be cumulative, so lots of small overdoses can be the same as one big one. I found out this year that I have liver damage from my previous overdoses, it is a hard thing to deal with. I did it as SI but it is hard that stuff I did a while ago still affects me once the immediate SI feelings/wishes have passed. I know you are worried and I know nothing I say (type) will make a difference but it is important you seek medical support after an overdose, it can kill you. I know this sounds a bit daft but I always think about how I would feel if I my SI went wrong. Oh gosh, I hope this isn't too morbid!
I am not trying to make this about me, but I guess I am reading this with my own experiences. I suppose for me, it got to a point where not being honest and trying to manage things myself got harder and harder until I couldn't. And sometimes I wish I had had the help before it got to this point because I could have.
Your posts about your thinking feeling muddled and difficult really resonate with me, you can have support to work through this so things feel less difficult. So SI and suicide feel less inevitable.
I completely agree with Hoophopes the chances of you being admitted to hospital are tiny, especially if it is something you actively want to avoid. And I appreciate that if people you have known have had bad experiences then it is rational to want to avoid it.
A psychiatrist might help to work out what links your underlying experiences of sadness, anxiety, a need to self-harm and feeling suicidal together. That might be depression or it might be BPD or it might be something else. A psychiatrist would also want to explore what caused you to feel this way since most people do not and you have clearly felt this way for a long time. Understanding that better might make it easier to work out what kind of therapeutic intervention would help you most. It is true that the only ways mental health professionals can really help are by giving them medications that either make their emotions more stable (less anxious maybe) or make them feel slightly happier or by talking to them. But not all meds are the same and how therapists talk to people, what they talk about and why and for how long will all be dictated by understanding why the person is so unhappy in the first place. For which you really a need to see a psychiatrist or possibly a clinical psychologist.
I appreciate you have had conflicting psychiatric assessments in the past. It is not an exact science because working out what is happening inside someone else's mind is really really hard. For the same reasons it is bloody hard work being a mental health patient and the best mental health professionals should know and respect that . But fluffydressinggown's experience at A&E and of the crisis team has been that there are professionals who get this. I think self-harm is an area where understanding has leapt forward a lot in the last ten years and as fluffy says a lot of people in healthcare (not all) now understand the importance of selfharm to some people as a coping mechanism and even that an overdose can be a form of self harm.
On this thread you have apologised a lot for wasting time or being frustrating (you do not need to do this). You are obviously very very conscious of how your behaviour affects other people. Is it possible you are over-estimating the extent to which you are imposing on others and under-estimating the extent to which others want to help you? And might this be affecting the decisions you make about getting help when you are injured?
Hello Cyan Cloud - just a hello and a wish you well really. I have got nothing to add to advice/words already given by others but just to say, hope things work out - very trite but it's a good luck from here.
Fluffy - I'm sorry you have liver damage. I know about the cumulative effect of overdoses, but recently had a liver function done (as part of a blood test for something else) and it came back fine. I don't think it's morbid to think of what would happen were SH to go wrong, I do the same thing. I always secretly hope that these ODs will be fatal. It would be a relief.
I don't think you're making anything about you either. It's natural to relate things to your own experiences and it helps to know that other people understand and can empathise (even though obviously I'm not glad that others feel this way too).
Penelope - I know I need to try again with the professionals. It's logical that, although I've tried quite a few meds, there are others I haven't tried. It's logical that there are different therapeutic approaches that I could try, and obviously different therapists. However, knowing this doesn't change how anxious I feel (because anxiety is illogical), nor does it change how I feel about myself. It's almost cyclical; I need to feel better about myself in order to feel like I deserve help, but I need help to feel better about myself.
I don't think that I'm over-estimating the amount I'm imposing, but it is possible that I'm under-estimating how much people want to help others. I know that there are people within the medical profession who have a genuine desire to help people (though I also know there are those who do not and who are just there for the paycheck). I struggle to apply that knowledge to me, because I don't feel like a proper person.
Crumbled - Thank you for the good wishes.
I'm very grateful to how much time and support people have given me, but I think I need to stop posting. I had a really bad night, and I think that feeling vulnerable over talking about these things contributed. It's doesn't feel safe having it all 'out there', even only online. I don't feel entirely in control when I talk about how I feel, so I SH more.
Thank you all very much for all the help. I'm sorry to have taken up people's time.
"I need to feel better about myself in order to feel like I deserve help, but I need help to feel better about myself."
"I know that there are people within the medical profession who have a genuine desire to help people...I struggle to apply that knowledge to me, because I don't feel like a proper person."
Those are really insightful statements. I know they do not make your situation easier but you have started to frame your situation slightly differently. At the start of this thread you made a lot of statements about how you were a hateful person. Now you are describing why talking to anyone about how you feel is so difficult much more clearly and not calling yourself hateful.
That is actually a big step forward. I'm going to hazard a guess that doing that and not just describing yourself in terrible and absolute terms as worthless and hateful was exhausting and really challenging and that is why you felt the need to self-harm too.
That is not a failure.
I can appreciate that this is really hard for you and that you now want to end this conversation. That is fine.
I still have time.
So I wasn't going to update this, but I thought; why not.
I saw a GP today. Not my usual one, this was a locum. She was nice; friendly and she listened quite well. I tried to kill myself a few days ago, and I told her this. I told her that my level of anxiety was becoming intolerable; I can find pretty much anything to be anxious about, and my thoughts are obsessive. She was sympathetic, but ultimately, unhelpful.
She asked if I was currently suicidal. I was honest, and told her that suicide is always an option. I think about dying constantly, and it would be very welcome. I intend to kill myself, and will attempt it again soon. She, again, was sympathetic. Lots of "poor you" which is horrifically patronising and made me feel like a four year old who'd stubbed their toe.
She offered to refer me for counselling. I told her I've tried that before, and I can't cope with it again. I am empty, and there is nothing left to say.
She felt medication was not a good option right now. I agreed. It would be horribly selfish of me to manipulate anyone's time in the pharmacy, and a doctor's time in doing repeat prescriptions.
I left, feeling like an attention seeking child. I'd wasted her time, and I feel guilty for it. She was polite, attentive and professional. I was pathetic, whiny and useless. She praised me for seeking help (though scolded me for not seeking medical attention after the suicide attempt) and said how "brave" I was, and how I should always come back to "discuss my options". I don't know if she was intending to be kind, but it didn't feel like that. Perhaps my perceptions are twisted. I think not. She was trying to tell me to fuck off, and I obliged.
I am very tired, and I have had enough.
No real idea why I'm posting this, but re-hashing the appointment has been helpful in getting things straight and justified in my head. I intended for this to be helpful to others in a similar situation, but I don't think that is the case. Other people are real, useful, proper people and they deserve every ounce of help and love they can find. I have realised that I am not like them.
CyanCloud, you are so brave. Ten years ago, I was where you are now. Almost everything you have written could have been me. I never had the courage to speak to the doctor except one time. Then I realised I had made a huge mistake and spend an hour or so back-tracking until they agreed to let me leave. What did come out of it was that I was sent to see the local priest (I have a huge, pathological mistrust of medical staff and everyone else) for some counselling. This was the answer for me because I felt able to believe he wouldn't force me into any treatment I wasn't happy with because it was confidential and against his beliefs to speak about it I went to see him for 4 years and in the first three I didn't speak to him about anything beyond how my week had been. Eventually I felt able to answer some of his yes/no questions. He asked me once to go to the doctors, but he called and spoke to the doctor first and all I had to do was turn up and confirm my name. The only condition he put on me was that I had to tell him if I SH so he could decide if I needed medical treatment.
It gave me enough to be able to get on with my life, even without SH, for a while. Only now has it been suggested that I might have a personality disorder. What I'm trying to say is that it sounds to me like it would be more beneficial for you at the moment to have someone who could help you with day to day living rather than at the causes of what makes you feel like that. You cannot even begin to confront things unless you feel safe to do so and I'm only telling you about what my situation was like because maybe a medical environment isn't the best place for you to find that safe place at the moment. It is an awful place to be, I really feel for you.
Please don't stop posting. I'm going to use one of the lines my counsellor regularly used on me years ago: Stop being so arrogant. It is not up to you to tell me what to do with my time. It is MY time and if I decide to give it to you to, then that is MY choice, you are neither wasting it nor taking it up because it is MINE to do with as I wish.
I think your posts are very helpful actually. You said Other people are real, useful, proper people and they deserve every ounce of help and love they can find. I have realised that I am not like them. I know this statement must be wrong because I could have written it. Maybe most other people, or the majority of other people, but certainly not all other people as you seem to imply. No, you are not like the majority of other people. You are you. An individual, a person in your own right. And we would be very honoured to know that you are willing trust us enough to keep posting to us.
Hope you're coping ok at the minute.
I don't know any answers for you as it sounds like you haven't yet found the right professional to speak to which is a shame. It seems like your posts have developed since your first posting & you are obviously empathetic & kind to others people's situations & feels like you should keep posting. I promise you are worth what others are willing to give you.
Please keep posting if you feel able as some of the previous posters have provided some great advice & I think this thread will definitely be useful to others.
I wish I could do more to help but really hope you manage to make some headway & get to believe in your value as a person -you are obviously bright & logical & I don't think you are seeking attention-also remember though it's hard to know if your interpretation of the GP's attitude is accurate, although I think she should have left you with some options of further discussion/treatment.
Take care, Evelyn
Hello Cyan. I started to read your post as I was wondering what the answer was to your first question but see things have moved on since then. I am another one who believes that you are a worthwhile person.
Margarita's post is inspiring. You are right Cyan that it can be incredibly hard to trust and NHS talking therapies are not set up to allow seeing someone for a very long time. Yet we know, from years of research, that what can really make the difference is a trusting, continuous relationship (I don't mean a romantic relationship) and it seems like this is what Margarita's experience gave her. Someone to talk to, without an agenda other than being there, someone who did not have to report back to their funders about progress, someone who was familiar enough with death to not fear it if she did choose that path. We also know that for some people, talking is very stressful and writing or other forms of communication such as art are far more beneficial. I am wishing for you that you find someone who might be able to just be with you, communicating in whichever way feels right for you.
There was a thread running on here a while back, can't remember what it was called, where people who liked to spend quiet time alone posted. It was a great thread, as, people discovered they were not odd or so unusual, it's just that they hadn't realised so many other like minded people were out there.
Thank you all.
Margarita, I'm glad you found someone you were able to speak to. Your priest sounds like he was really helpful to you. I'm definitely not trying to be arrogant, and I'm pretty horrified that's how I appear. I know it's logical, since I'm talking solely about myself, and that in itself is an arrogant behaviour. If a counsellor had told me to stop being arrogant, I would have been mortified; I would have either completely stopped talking about myself, or stopped going to sessions.
Evelyn - the GP did say I could go back whenever, to discuss options. Since I turned down the offer of counselling, and she didn't feel it was safe to give me medication (ODs too frequent, and I can't guarantee I'm able to get out of the house weekly to get smaller prescriptions), there's not a lot else she could do. She was nice, which is more than I deserved considering I was using her time selfishly.
Change - I can't function in relationships. I know how that sounds. I can't deal with having friends, or with having to "check in" with people. I am not happy alone, but it is easier than the alternative. Even if I was able to deal with it, I don't have anyone with whom I could work in that capacity.
I can't remember why I posted. It felt logical last night, though even as I was doing it I knew I shouldn't. I've been too scared to open Chrome all day (I'm logged in on Chrome, and use other browsers for other websites). I don't even know why. Scared of people confirming what I thought, probably, even though I know people here are far too kind to do so.
I don't know who I am anymore. I don't know what is a public persona, and what is real. That sounds ridiculous. It is. I am. I really don't want to be arrogant, that's a horrible quality in anyone. I'm sorry. Really, I am.
I was in two minds about writing that. But it's the one thing that really sticks with me. It also horrified me, (I had the same reaction as you did initially) but it - it's hard to explain - was the one thing he said that shocked me out of the place where I was, made me realise that I couldn't go on as I was and that I needed to let someone who was willing spend time with me, help me. It took the burden off of me, thinking that I was being selfish and wasting their time, and allowed me to accept that it was something I needed to do. It was no longer 'my choice' to go to the sessions because he had made the choice too and if I cancelled he always made sure that I rearranged. I felt I had to because he expected me to. If someone wants to give their time to you, the only non-arrogant thing to do is accept it, else you are saying their time is worth nothing to you. It was probably the best thing he could have said to me and the only thing that convinced me I had to keep going back. It challenged how I saw the world and how my logic worked.
And what you say about the doctor, that you were using her time selfishly, is bollocks. It's her job. She was being paid, (by the sound of it for doing nothing). You are doing her a favour by visiting :p
I think you posted because on some level you know you are desperately unhappy, you know you need help from somewhere and you don't know where from. You need some reassurance that you are not alone. And you're not, we're here, waiting for your next update.
It does not sound ridiculous, does everyone not behave differently in public to in private? (I genuinely don't know the answer to that question, I always assumed it was yes but I don't know if that's just because I do I assumed that's how everyone works). Whatever it is, it is exhausting. I'm going to send you a pm.
Hi to offer a different perspective. It reads like the gp listened to you, tried to offer compassion and kindness ( a less kind dr would not have used what you felt were trite phrases, a less understanding dr could have contacted social care or health visitor immediately if you and children, a less understanding dr may have done a referral to a psychiatrist against your wishes). And said you could go again. And offered you the two options gp's have, counselling and medication rather than offering neither.
You could ask for weekly prescriptions to be ordered, I do mine online so do not leave the house to do them and they get sent straight to my local chemist. Would that help?
Some children's centres offer different groups you could try to help if you want a different approach? Some areas have Samaritans offices where you Can go to talk to them. D not rule out phoning or emailing them either as an option for listening at a specific moment.
Margarita, I've replied to your PM. Missed replying to the last paragraph, though. To my knowledge, most people don't behave massively different in public vs in private. Obviously, there are things that people do in private that they wouldn't want an audience for, but most people's core personalities are the same.
Hoophopes, I don't have children. I know that means I shouldn't really be here. I was linked here a long time ago from another website, and never left. It felt a logical place to post because it felt safe here.
I know the GP offered what she could (she didn't actually offer medication as she didn't think it would be wise right now). I didn't expect more from her. I wasn't trying to be negative about her; like I said, I thought she was nice.
I wasn't aware you could do prescriptions online, though it does still leave the problem of getting to the chemists. In all honesty, even with weekly prescriptions, I don't trust myself not to stock-pile.
Thank you both, sorry for being a nuisance. I can't tell whether I'm being paranoid or if it's justified. How do you tell the difference?
I don't know how to finish this post. There's no way I can say how I feel without sounding like I'm either about to top myself (I'm not) or being a total drama queen (even though everyone already thinks that I am one). Sorry for being so me.
Hi - some medications can be done by injections, what is called a depot injection. you just turn up (think most are fortnightly) every time to wherever the nurse does them. Not sure which medications are available that way, as an alternative.
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