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AIBU?

To ask if you can take someone to a therapist?

37 replies

Bluenoseday · 25/01/2024 08:15

NCed for this as details are outing.

DH needs mental health support. He is very anxious, having massive panic attacks, and also says he has been hearing voices. He has had some strange hallucinations and very dark thoughts. His parent has just died. He is unable to work and is, understandably, feeling depressed and desperate.

The GP has prescribed beta blockers and referred dh to the mental health crisis team. But that was 2 weeks ago and we’ve heard nothing. He has been on an nhs waiting list for therapy for 6 months and I don’t see that going anywhere soon.

obviously I am trying to support dh but I think he needs some external support too. He feels too overwhelmed to find a private therapist himself. Would it work for me to find a few, interview them, and then take him to meet them? Would therapists accept this? Or is it an important part of the process that he reaches out himself?

OP posts:
Weepingskies · 25/01/2024 08:17

I know this isn’t what you asked, but please do get in touch with the GP again. I’d usually expect someone to hear from the crisis team a lot quicker than that (it is a crisis after all!) and I’d worry a little that the referral may have gone astray somewhere. Also important to make sure the GP knows about the hallucinations and dark thoughts. I do hope things improve for your DH soon - and look after yourself too, it’s hard on you both.

Bluenoseday · 25/01/2024 08:20

Thanks. I will give it a go, but I don’t think we can rely on the nhs at the moment. We need to have some control over this situation otherwise I can just see it spiralling (it has already spiralled considerably)

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Dancerprancer19 · 25/01/2024 08:25

It might not be always be the case, but often private therapists won’t take people in crisis or higher need because it’s really best if they have NHS support in an emergency.
I would persistently ring the GP and crisis team (there should be a number to ring available online) until he gets help. He sounds like he needs urgent support and I to perfectly okay to keep asking until he gets it.

runningonberocca · 25/01/2024 08:27

Please call your local crisis team - it sounds as if the referral was missed. They should have responded within a max of 24 hrs. Any private therapist will just refer back to the local crisis team if he is having “dark thoughts “ and hallucinations. He needs to be more stable on terms of his mental health before he is ready to engage in therapy

Catza · 25/01/2024 08:27

NHS crisis teams have 24h response time (I worked in one). If you haven't heard then either the referral didn't go through or they deemed it not to be high risk and didn't accept him. You need to follow this up ASAP.
As far as private therapy, you obviously need his consent and he should be "interviewing" them himself. It is important he finds someone he can work with and what seems good to you may not be appropriate for him. Just find some options, ask him when he wants to schedule an appointment and he will then need to give verbal consent to the therapist for you to attend an initial appointment with him.
ETA: agree with previous posters that therapist will not be able to support you right now as they cannot offer crisis resolution or work with someone who has acute psychosis.

Grimchmas · 25/01/2024 08:28

I think your answer is to reach out to a few and see if they will.

Bluenoseday · 25/01/2024 08:29

Thank you all. For those saying contact the gp again - can I do this myself do you think or do I need to get dh to do it?

OP posts:
easilydistracted1 · 25/01/2024 08:30

I don't think most therapists would think this was ethical I'm afraid. They need to make sure your DH is consenting to engage in therapy and has the capacity to do this. Also if he is voice hearing and hallucinating he doesn't sound like he's stable enough to engage in therapy. If you have your own money to spend on help you would be better looking at private psychiatry initially rather than a general counsellor

Catza · 25/01/2024 08:31

Bluenoseday · 25/01/2024 08:29

Thank you all. For those saying contact the gp again - can I do this myself do you think or do I need to get dh to do it?

You can follow up yourself (with his consent).

NorahC · 25/01/2024 08:31

I work in the field. If he has hallucinations and hears voices, a private therapist likely wouldn't and shouldn't take them on as they know he might need more intense support. I would chase the crisis team. They usually have a duty number you can call. Google your mental health trust + crisis team and see what comes up. There also should be a crisis line operated by the trust that anyone can call, google it. You can call and explain the situation - they would then contact the crisis team for follow-up. The GP should know about the voices and hallucinations if they don't.

In general, private therapists would not agree for sessions arranged by another adult, for various reasons. But you could certainly pass on some details for your husband to call himself. If he is unable to help himself enough to make contact, he likely needs more intense support from the NHS. And in this situation I don't think private is suitable. You want the resources of the NHS. As meagre as they are, they have a multidisciplinary team, can do home visits etc.

I hope things get better for you. It's not uncommon to have this presentation after a bereavement, but don't let it linger. Chase the crisis team.

ssd · 25/01/2024 08:33

I dont see anything wrong with you contacting the gp on his behalf

Bluenoseday · 25/01/2024 08:35

Thanks everyone, this is very helpful. I will contact the GP

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pinguins · 25/01/2024 08:41

Private therapists cannot help with this. He almost certainly needs medical intervention not therapy to get the voices under control first before he looks at talking treatments, and even a private psychiatrist usually won't give an appointment if you're in a crisis. Having said that, I did get an appointment with Psychiatry UK last Christmas to get bipolar medication in an urgent situation after 5 years of being stable without meds but I had a pre-existing diagnosis and had seen them before 5 years earlier.

If you don't get anywhere phoning the GP, Google your county + "crisis team" or ring 111 and follow the prompts for mental health crisis.

They should have attended the same day. Keep trying every day until someone turns up.

If you still don't get anywhere in 48 hours or if it worsens at all, take him to A+E or ring 999.

Good luck!

Bluenoseday · 25/01/2024 08:51

Crisis helpline says they don’t deal with referrals. GP surgery says they can’t talk to me. So there’s nothing i can do.

OP posts:
Bluenoseday · 25/01/2024 08:53

Feel so fucking helpless. No one helps do they? No one fucking helps.

OP posts:
Weepingskies · 25/01/2024 08:56

Try 111 - they may be able to signpost to the crisis team. Or call the GP back - can you get him to the phone to at least say he gives consent for you to talk to them and then you can handle the rest of the phone call. Or even go down to the GP surgery with him to ask for help. As a last resort (only because I’m sure it’ll be a long uncomfortable wait) go to A+E - if he is hallucinating and having thoughts about harming himself this is a medical emergency and A+E is entirely appropriate if you can’t access timely help otherwise. Please keep going and sending hugs x

easilydistracted1 · 25/01/2024 10:05

Have a look if there is an advocacy service that covers your area. They can represent his views and support with accessing help. What does he actually want to happen as this has an impact on the support you can offer

BobbyBiscuits · 25/01/2024 10:13

If the crisis team don't take referrals, how are you meant to access their service? That sounds really weird. He should also be asking to see the community psychiatrist, which the GP can refer him to. Have you tried contacting Mind, the MH charity? If it gets worse he may have to present himself at A&E, he should be able to access MH support through that route, (I ended up under psych team when I went into general hospital) though obviously waiting around for hours is not great. I'm so sorry you are having to deal with this, it must be very worrying but you are doing the right thing and trying your best to get him help.

ssd · 25/01/2024 10:52

Bluenoseday · 25/01/2024 08:51

Crisis helpline says they don’t deal with referrals. GP surgery says they can’t talk to me. So there’s nothing i can do.

Was this a receptionist?

Sorry but you need to get firm and fight his corner

ssd · 25/01/2024 10:54

Sorry i really didn't want to sound like you aren't fighting his corner. Its plain you are.
I hope you can access some help soon. Flowers

stayathomer · 25/01/2024 10:56

Unfortunately my experience (Ireland), is that unless through gp or person themselves they won’t allow someone else to book. (We were trying to get help for my brother but nobody would talk to us)

cloudglazer · 25/01/2024 10:59

I work in this area. It sounds as though he needs a crisis team. There (understandably) isn't enough info here to know if a therapist could take him on, but it does sound as though it would need to be an experienced and well trained psychotherapist if he doesn't meet the crisis team threshold for support.
A therapist usually needs the client to engage with them personally, as therapy needs the client to want to do it, otherwise it won't work. You could make calls for availability, and to check if they would work with him, but not "interview" them. They would likely need to speak to him to decide if they can take him on

KreedKafer · 25/01/2024 11:23

Does the GP know he is hearing voices and hallucinating? Your husband isn't just depressed - if he's seeing and hearing things that aren't there, he's in a state of psychosis and that's very serious. That's a matter for a psychiatrist, not a therapist. You need to get him back to the GP as a matter of urgency and explain that he's having psychotic episodes where he hears voices and sees things that aren't really there.

cloudglazer · 25/01/2024 12:21

Hearing voices isn't always psychosis. Some info here in case it is helpful.

www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/hearing-voices/about-hearing-voices/

Thelnebriati · 25/01/2024 12:56

If he is hearing voices, hallucinating and having panic attacks you can take him to A&E for urgent intervention. He really needs meds and support, therapy isn't going to be enough.

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