Today group members chose to talk about their experiences. We know that commissioning services are keen for feedback towards new services, so Choose Life wanted to use their voice to say what would help.
People thought that when they were admitted to psychiatric hospital they would have a space to heal and that somebody would be there to listen and that they would be able to talk through the confusion and despair.
In reality, the hospital was not safe, it was not a healing environment, it was hectic, chaotic, other patients had drugs and people found themselves exposed to dangerous and violent situations.
People acknowledged that the staff were good and caring but spent all their time doing damage control, so there was no-one to talk to about feelings, there was no-one to listen. People just got told to go back to bed and behave.
Some of the medication is toxic, with side effects. It changes you, and sometime you just get released or taken off meds without knowing how to care for yourself.
Seeing people get sectioned so easily is scary, so you repress all expression of emotion so that it doesn’t happen to you.
Would it be good if there was someone to listen to you (a listener, maybe a peer)?
Would it be helpful if the hospital had something like a Choose Life group equivalent?
YES, that would be wonderful