I was abused at Mount Auburn Hospital in August 2013, no acknowledgment or apology

My life has been in shambles ever since because of what the hospital did.  Medical abuse is real. I have lost so many friendships.  People, well-meaning or not, who refuse to believe that this is happened to me. However, it did.

I’m not sure what to do. Maybe write to the CEO and tell this person what my life has been like since I left, the impact it all has had, and describe just what happened and why it all was wrong, and say this should never, ever happen to another patient in their care.

Why is the victim so often blamed? Why are the perps, who are often doctors, wealthy people in high places, CEOs, health care providers, therapists even, psychiatrists of course, so often glorified as saviors?

These cruel people are not saviors, but abusers.

We need to put a stop to abuse.  Please stop abuse. Stop it from happening to other people. And please, if you have abused, at least APOLOGIZE.  You’ll most likely feel better.  Stop abusing and you’ll be a better person.

Julie

 

Trauma

I live in public housing. We lock doors here and we know our own neighbors can’t be trusted. It’s an way of life you grow into after a while. Your friends? Be on guard. Those rabbit ears develop, you aren’t born with them. They come from trauma, over and over. I see rabbit ears on people, those scared, scared eyes, ready to run.

Young people too, these days. Scared eyes and ears up. Clothes, too, wearing those clothes that tell me they are on the defensive, clothes that protect them from a potential attacker that might come after them from any angle.

Tell someone who lives a cushy life. They have no clue, and will look at you with a blank stare.

“Treatment” for the real evils in society: stigma, hatred, and prejudice…should this be imposed on abusive mental health professionals?

Often, folks in antipsychiatry speak of there being no mental illness. But I wonder maybe if this is true or not. I am beginning to wonder if maybe there indeed is a mental illness.   I can identify one: racism.  Surely, that’s a mental illness, isn’t it?  Here’s another: homophobia.  I think not only are these “illnesses” but that they are things people should rightly get locked up for. Why are we instead locking up people who are depressed or confused that have committed no crime?

I truly believe these are illnesses and I do believe people can go to a sort of “group therapy” or “support group” or “individual therapy” and get whatever rotten attitudes they have “fixed.” In fact, I think it should be required that people should be forced to get “treatment” if these “illnesses cause hateful crimes such as lynchings, rape, murder, and the like.

What about stigma against people with mental illness or another disability, such as a learning disability or autism or MS or Alzheimer’s, and what if this prejudicial attitude causes abuse toward someone in this vulnerable population?  Should a person with such prejudice be forced into forced treatment, such as a “therapy group” for those who abuse such folks?

What about mental health professionals, such as psychiatrists that coerce their patients to take dangerous drugs without informing them fully of the side effects?  What about therapists that cross boundary lines?  What about mental health professionals that just don’t care?  I think psychiatrists, too, should be forced into “therapy” for abusers.  These psychiatrists and therapists certainly need long-term, intensive care, because they certainly have deep-set, serious disorders, don’t you think?

The different parts of me

Thought I would talk about this.

You guys don’t know me.  No one does, well, hardly anyone.  Not too many people even bother with me these days.

Of course, there’s my “online presence.” That’s what most people assume is the “real me,” but it’s only a tiny fraction of who I am. The part I show to the real world through my computer.  That’s the “me” that talks about political and social justice issues, interpersonal stuff and the “me” that rants a fair amount.

So I suppose folks just want nothing to do with me and figure I’m a bitch nobody wants around.

Truth is, I spend all day alone and never speak to anyone. I go days and days without speaking, except an affectionate word or two with Puzzle. Maybe once or twice a week I get the pleasure of a human conversation.  It used to be far worse, in fact.  I’d go a full month with zero human conversations.

Yep, that bad.

Please, don’t let this happen to you. Do anything to see to it that you spend time conversing.  Even go out on a bus ride and pick up random conversation with anyone you can.  I know, sad but true…

Strangers are sometimes far kinder than folks that claim to be your pals.

Truth is, I’m actually a nice person if anyone takes the time to get to know me, but hardly anyone bothers to get that far. They dismiss me before I even start speaking.  They walk away, turn their backs, assume I’m crazy before I open my mouth, judge me before I have a chance to speak or meet them in person. I never stand a chance.  I am judged with no jury.  I’m sent to hell on the fast track, not even worthy of a St. Peter interview.

Anyway, I’m so down on humanity right now.  I feel like crying my eyes out. Is this what happens when you are abused in a hospital, or abused by a therapist, that is, ongoing abuse for a lengthy period? And then, no one believes what happened to you, for years? Do you lose faith in humanity entirely? I guess you do.

Please, world, tell me.   Then again, no one can answer that.  Maybe Puzzle knows.

Happy Valentine’s Day: Look in the mirror

Here’s a message for all the friends that turned their backs on  me in the past year.  This is for those who didn’t bother to call me back when I called. Not once, but many times. Those who now look upon me with disdain and loathing. Those who fear me unnecessarily.  This is for those who repeatedly made excuses not to get together even though we live near to each other.

This is for those who are relieved that they live far away. Relieved that because of the distance, it’s easy to keep me at arm’s length. Relieved that they never, ever have to see the likes of me, and don’t want to tell me that really, they find me disgusting.

And this is for all those friends that live blocks away but deliberately duck or turn their backs or walk the other way when they see me on the street or in stores.  Are you ashamed to be seen with me?

This is for all those that deliberately dropped contact with me or told me, “I don’t want to be your friend anymore.”  You are a fucking asshole.  Plain and simple.  I am not going to “understand.”  No, I have no other cheek.

This is for all those who pretend to like me but don’t even respect me. Those that are polite to me but actually think I’m crazy and delusional. Those that doubt. Those that ask, “Could this be real?  Maybe she needs ‘help.’  She should be medicated.  Maybe she’s making it all up.”

Yes, I have been abused, and if that makes YOU uncomfortable, you need to look in the mirror, asshole.

Sure, my personality changed after the abuse.  We don’t lock up abused pets. We take them into our homes. We love abused puppies and put them up on Facebook and the pictures make people cry.

Pictures of me?  Folks would spit on me.  I am the victim of repeated hate crimes.

Animal advocacy groups would be shocked at the bullying I’ve been going through the past few years and especially the past few months and weeks.

Yes, look in the mirror.  Thanks.

 

Medical abuse is real

People do speak up.  Or try to. But it’s hard.  You speak up, you’re called names, told you’re lying, told you “don’t want to get better,” told you “have a bad attitude,” and worse.  I have heard the worst horror stories coming from every hospital in the Boston area. There are no “good hospitals.” Show me one where they don’t break the law, where abuse doesn’t exist, where most patients go home and feel like they were treated well.

No, theses aren’t cozy places. I’m not asking for anything cushy.  But they should be humane! They shouldn’t be torture houses!  I shouldn’t have to leave and feel like I’m saving my life by doing so!

Patients leave these places scared. They come home and cry, just like I did.  They want someone to believe them.  If they are lucky, their families do, their own family doctors do, and they are surrounded by decent, loving people when they come home and recover from hospital horror.  I wasn’t so lucky.

So I was again called “dangerous” and someone said I was giving horrible advice and I didn’t know what I was talking about.

Why?  It’s not good to give advice but often I make the mistake and I get tempted.  Cuz what did I tell someone? Maybe it was dumb, but not so dumb when you think of it, really.

It’s true, actually, that when you call the local crisis team, your call is going to be traced.  Yep. Traced. So they can call the cops on you.  If you block the call, which of course I’ve done, they will immediately notice, and demand to know who is calling…so they can call the cops on you.

So calling the cops…why is this good and why is this not so good.  If you are calling and saying, “I am being attacked!  Help!” then obviously, it’s a very good thing that they’ve got Caller ID. Great for modern technology cuz they can then send someone to come rescue you. But chances are the average person who  is being attacked is going to call 911…well, you never know.  I mean, I can sit here writing and inventing scenarios for you…endlessly.  A kid eats a bottle of aspirin and then the parent is panicked and instead of calling Poison Control, somehow dials the Mental Health Crisis Team…now obviously, the Crisis Team isn’t the number to call…who knows what will happen now…but they’ve got that handy Caller ID and can alert an ambulance if your sick child needs one.

We all know how Mental Health Crisis Teams work. They cut you off mid-sentence and whatever you are saying, jump to conclusions and finish your sentence.  It’s the end of the worker’s shift and these people have no patience.  So the sick child becomes the child YOU abused and tried to poison, and next thing you know, the cops get called and you’ve lost custody. Bet it’s happened.

If your child finds pills and eats them, call poison control or something. I don’t know and I’m not a parent. That’s not my point and this is a made-up story anyway.

The point is, most of the time, these Crisis Teams aren’t good to call.  Have I EVER had a good experience calling them?  Has anyone?  I’ve always been yelled at by these people. Insulted. Told why it was a SIN to phone them, how I’m wasting their time.  Or that they don’t know about eating disorders and HOW DARE I CALL THEM? WRONG WRONG WRONG BAD SINNER.  I am insulted by these paid workers time after time and I hang up feeling like shit.  If I wasn’t suicidal, I sure feel like it after talking to those people.

They make you feel like dirt.  You can feel just how bored they are and how badly they don’t wish to speak to you, what a nuisance you are.  “Oh, you again?” Bored.  I want to tell them to go fuck off.

So was it “bad advice” for me to tell this young, upset person that I don’t blame her for being shaken and traumatized because she was yelled at by a suicide hotline worker?  That it was terrible for the worker to say that her call “didn’t qualify”?  I’ve sure been there.  Told I was wasting their time and that my call was “inappropriate.”  I want to tell these people to go to hell. No one asking for help should ever, ever be yelled at, put down, or insulted like that.  Ever.

God bless those that speak out. We will succeed and flourish and show them just how strong we are. Grow and be strong.  Win!

 

A basic pattern of brainwashing and abuse

This is a pattern I have seen again and again in my life that I would like to share.  I guess I was thinking right now just a bit more about Jenna’s comment from a few days ago about her unfortunate experience working with Shan Larter.

Shan’s two-hour freebee, which she did twice over the fall that I know of, was of course not an educational seminar but a promo for herself.  I knew this fairly soon into the “seminar.”  She claimed that the audio was not even working properly and she was not truly taking questions from listeners at all, but selling herself, which was I’m sure was the plan all along.  I meanwhile had typed into the “questions” box about five questions.  Silly me, thinking she would answer these questions.

I actually saved the questions I asked Shan, and put them onto a document, but instead of sharing them now, I will share them in a separate post because I feel that I would be straying too far from the topic at hand, as the questions are detailed.  Let me just say that if anyone else out there was foolish enough as I was to think that Shan was going to answer their questions, they, too, were sorely disappointed after listening with baited breath for the entire two hours.

Let me say this: Beware of any individual, group, religion, place of residence, hospital, therapist, doctor, or practitioner who tells you you are “exceptional” or “special” and then says they will make you a deal just for you.  This is a brainwashing technique I have seen used many times in my life over the years used very effectively by abusers, scammers, cults, and brainwashers. 

Yes, those of you who have been around my blog a while know that I had an experience back in 1979 in California when I was brainwashed by the Moonies.  I got out on my own.  In fact, before leaving, I tried to warn others and tried to get others that I believed were newcomers to also leave.  I tried to spread the word that we were being brainwashed.  I had to do this very secretly and I passed notes to people, trying not to have these notes seen by those that I believed were cult leaders.

Now listen to this parallel:  During my last hospitalization, this in July 2012, I attempted to speak up and tell as many patients as possible to read about the Five Fundamental Rights, which is a document about human rights in psychiatric settings.  The staff tried to break up these conversations and did everything they could to shut me up.  They wanted no talk of “rights” on their unit.  Why?  They were breaking the damn law, lots of laws, and they knew it.  They didn’t want the patients reading the documents they rightfully had access to.

Do you see what I am saying?

Of course, I did win my human rights case and the patients now have a private phone on the Alcott Unit.  I hear that only one of the phones has a phone booth built around it, but I of course have not been on the unit and have not seen it myself.

So anyway, I wanted to point out the parallel of my role in these settings.  It is glaringly obvious.

An abusive spouse will do the same.  Tell you you are exceptional.  Tell you you are the one and only.  And then they will dig in.  Because you are the one and only, the abuser has given you reasons why you are unable to leave.  So you are completely stuck.

An abusive therapist will also do this.   An abusive therapist may abuse their patients in many ways.  Of course we hear the stories about sexual abuse, but what isn’t recognized or reported is emotional abuse or sexual abuse that is done more covertly and can’t be reported because it can’t in fact be proven in to the legal folks.  This abuse is just as hurtful and these relationships can go on and on for years, with no recourse.  And no one believes you.  Because you were the crazy one.  Everyone says you are exaggerating or made it up, but you know you are right.

Please, hold onto what you know is right.  If nothing else, write it down.

The post I just posted a bit ago about what happened at Newton-Wellesley Hospital with the vomit odor room is an example of one such thing, when I was accused of being the “crazy” one, but in fact there was something very wrong with the air vents or something.  (Go back and read that post and if you were  the one smoking some weird weed downstairs, you owe me one.)

So anyway, I had to take a break from writing all this, and rush to the post office before they closed.  I have come back home and totally lost my train of thought.  While walking home I thought up another blog entry I want to write.  So I will write that one, too, soon, and also I will post those questions I told you about that I had stupidly thought Shan would answer “specially” for me.  Oh yeah, sure.  Beware when they tell you you are special.  You sucker.