The Only Wrong Thing Here Is The Therapy

, , , , , , , | Friendly | December 12, 2017

(I am in bad shape after a rough breakup that involved several of my friends “choosing sides” in favor of my ex. This happens not long after my parents’ divorce, and I am also a senior in college with a thieving roommate. I am struggling daily with extreme stress and depression, and on a particularly bad day, I swallow a bunch of pills. A friend takes me to the hospital, where I am informed that my action has triggered some legal thing in which they must send me to a psychiatric unit, that I have no say in the matter, and that my friend must leave. I am horrified, ashamed, and alone. Hours later, after being locked in a dark hospital room, an “intake counselor” comes in and starts asking me questions before I’m taken to the psych unit. I answer him honestly and list all of the factors in the thunderstorm that was my life, including my parents’ divorce, a dear friend moving away, and my fiancé dumping me, and at the end of it all, I say:)

Me: “I just feel so abandoned, like people keep leaving me.”

Counselor: *puts down his pad, looks me straight in the eye* “Well, clearly, there’s something wrong with you.”

Me: “What?”

Counselor: “There’s something wrong with you, or people wouldn’t leave you. Something about you makes them leave.”

Me: *shocked and in tears* “There’s nothing wrong with me; I’m just having a hard time—”

Counselor: *cutting me off* “No. There’s something wrong with you. We’re going to take you to a place where they fix you. Then, this won’t happen anymore. We’re done. They’ll come for you soon.”

(He abruptly left, and I burst into tears, suddenly terrified by whatever this place was they were taking me to and what could be in store for me. The scary place turned out to be a rehab facility, not an electro-shock chamber with “A Clockwork Orange” eye clamps like I imagined, and I was actually able to get some help in dealing with my losses and grief. My friend who took me to the hospital continues to be amazing and helps me sort out things in my life so that I can get healthy. I have never gone back to that dark place, metaphorically or literally. Thankfully, when I told my parents about what the intake counselor said, they furiously called up the clinic. The clinic representative admitted it wasn’t the first time they had received complaints about how he talked to patients. A year later, I heard through my therapist with whom the clinic had placed me that the intake counselor had been let go. I was glad to hear, because his words haunted me, and still do to an extent.)

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