Wednesday 11 April 2018

CMHT Assessment and Possibly Some More Help?

This post follows on from Another Crisis and an Urgent CMHT Referral

(TW: Mentions of Overdose and Suicidal thoughts)

The past couple of weeks have really dragged and it's taken a lot of distractions and talking to friends to stop me from looking for my medication. I've tried, I've struggled, but I managed to keep myself busy (mostly with gaming). Unfortunately, I've found it hard to focus on anything but ODing.

I finally had my assessment on Monday. I was nervous, but had written down some notes and knew what I wanted to say. I arrived 15 minutes early (as the letter said to) but, due to the CPN being busy with another patient, I wasn't seen until 15 minutes after my appointment time. I was really agitated at this point, but apart from ringing CMHT again to see if I'd be seen soon, I bit my lip.

The CPN I saw was the same one I saw last time I had an assessment. Luckily, she had a lot of my details, so we mainly focused on how I'd been feeling and what had been happening recently. She still asked me a fair amount of questions, however. These included questions about the overdose , whether I was suicidal, how my appetite, personal hygiene, concentration levels etc have been. We also discussed the medication I was on right now, whether I'd had a review of them, and if I'd had a blood test recently. I was exhausted by the end! One thing I noticed was that the CPN wrote a few notes and mentioned it a few times when I said that my parents have been looking after my medication. I thought this might go in my favour when it comes to deciding if I should get extra help from CMHT.

We also spoke about the things going on in my life right now, and possible things that have triggered my mood swings and depression. There were a couple of things I mentioned, which were the stresses with planning to move house with a friend, and my nan's declining health.

Nan has been showing more and more signs of Alzheimers/Dementia. She is starting to become verbally aggressive and more confused over quite simple things. It's making it very difficult to have a conversation with her or explain anything to her, as she cannot process it properly and tends to shout over us. Since the CMHT assessment, Nan has had a cognitive assessment which she only just passed. There's no diagnosis yet, but the GP is very concerned and wants to keep an eye on her.

As for moving house, as I'm not stable or safe at the moment (I'm still constantly thinking about overdosing) I have decided not to move just yet. I felt so guilty about telling my friend, and he's not happy with me at all, but I had to make this decision and put my own health first.

Soon after this, the CMHT assessment came to a close. The CPN made sure we'd covered everything then told me what she wanted to happen. She wants me to have a blood test, to rule out any physical causes for my mood changes etc. She also wants me to have a medication review and some more Self Compassion therapy. She is having a meeting about me today, where she will suggest this and hopefully she will contact me later to let me know what has been decided.

Friday 6 April 2018

Another Crisis and an urgent CMHT referral

(TW: Self Harm and Overdose mentions)

In the past few weeks, I've felt very low and noticed I've had strong urges to harm myself. I spoke to one of my best friends and she suggested ringing CMHT. This is also something that my care plan suggests when things are going very badly, so I rang them.

I eventually got through to someone from CMHT, but because I wasn't under their care, I was then told to ring the Access Team (This is the main referral team). I was told by them, to ring the Primary Care Team. When I rang them, instead of being connected to someone I could talk to, I was told to leave a voicemail and I would be called back. My voice was quite shaky at this point, it'd taken a lot for me to make just one phonecall, let alone three! I didn't get a callback, so eventually I text my therapist (at that point, my foggy mind had finally realised I had her mobile number). She text back quite quickly, asked me some questions about the urges to harm myself, what I wanted to do, how likely it was that I'll do it etc. I told her that I had very strong urges to overdose, and had the boxes of all my medication right by me, ready to take. She then said she would call me in half an hour.

I was trying so hard, but as the minutes ticked by, the urges became far too strong and I took my first overdose. Granted, a small one, but an overdose nonetheless.

Soon after this, my therapist finally called back. I told her that I had actually taken some medication, and that I wanted to take as many as would make me unconscious. She asked more questions, then said she would get in touch with the Access Team. She told me to expect a callback, possibly from a CPN from CMHT. It took a couple of hours (talking to my best friend prevented me from taking more of an overdose) but a CPN called me. I explained everything to her and she booked me in for a "priority assessment". Unfortunately, the earliest she could fit me in was 9th April. I accepted that appointment. She then wanted to check I'd be ok, and had distractions as well as people to talk to. She told me to get my parents to hide my medication from me, and only give me a day's worth at a time. She also told me about an app called Calm Harm (which is supposed to use various methods to help you resist self harming).

I was happy about the assessment, but not about the waiting time. I couldn't see how I'd make it through the two weeks. I ended up taking another overdose in the night, so I could sleep. One particularly disturbing thing that happened afterwards was that I had some visual hallucinations. I told my friend the next day, and she explained this could be caused by Serotonin Syndrome (something which can occur when you take too many antidepressants).

Since then, I have had to ask my parents to take care of my medication for me, as every day I've been having thoughts (and sometimes urges) to take another overdose. I find it hard to explain why and what I actually want to happen. I'm not sure I'm very suicidal, but I do want to be unconscious and to be able to escape from all the pressures I'm under at the moment (potentially moving house, nan being unwell to name a couple of things). Another thing I want is help. I think my mental health medication has stopped working and I need to finally get therapy for BPD. I worry that I won't be considered ill enough though.

Either way, I will mention all this at the assessment. I've now been discharged from Primary Care as I'm "too complex" for them to deal with. Ideally, I'd love to have a CPN for a while, as well as a medication review, and to be put on the waiting list for DBT/another therapy for BPD.

My negative mind is telling me not to keep my hopes up however. I'm worried that I will be discharged back to my GP with nothing more than advice to distract myself. The thing is, distractions aren't working anymore and I am not safe.

I had to tell a friend today that I could not now move house with them, as mentally I'm just not stable enough. I can't keep myself safe on my own, and I'm just not sure I could cope with the stresses of moving. I need help to get through this, and I'm so worried that I'm not going to get it.