Monday, March 20, 2023

Comments by RichB

Showing 17 of 17 comments.

  • I agree. I had to leave my comfort zone to run a marathon, or go to grad school. I still enjoyed the challenge, venturing into the unknown. There was no suffering. I never subscribed to the no pain-no gain nonsense I heard in the 70’s. With running, if you run whilst in pain, you get an overuse injury! I bore some discomfort without hurting myself. I ventured out of my comfort zone, but with common sense. The challenge helped me to feel more alive, built my confidence. It was an adventure, whatever the outcome.

    I have to leave my comfort zone to seek a relationship. It’s a risk, of being rejected, meeting more strangers, enduring more anxiety. My current comfort zone is isolating, feeling stagnant.

    My best example: I have to leave my comfort zone to get off these toxic psych meds I’ve been on for two decades. Seeing a holistic practitioner instead of the mainstream drug dispenser/doctor. Venturing into the unknown, it feels scary. I’m chasing a better quality of life, not riches.

    My comfort zone is not one of happiness or serenity. It just feels safe and familiar, minimal unknowns or surprises.
    As mentioned in the comments, it depends on one’s definition of comfort zone.

  • Great article! I can identify with much of it, such as being labeled some diagnosis(es). I no longer identify as my diagnoses. Currently living your recommendations such as online courses (especially during pandemic), work, and the goal to be totally self-supporting again.
    Family members and psychiatrists may see me mostly as that diagnosis/label, but as you said, the important thing is that we don’t accept the label. We are creative, talented persons.
    The whole psychiatric system/industry is NOT based on any medical science. Why do they require psychiatrists to go to medical school? They’re not really providing any medical treatment, just prescribing drugs or administering ECT, while not really sure how or why it works! What a waste of a medical degree!

  • Wholeheartedly agree. I have told “professionals” I was thinking of suicide and have been incarcerated in lockdown psych wards, the worst being here in Georgia. I was held for over a week, had no say in when I would get released, saw the dr. for 3 minutes in which he asked me what drugs have worked in the past. The majority of patients were people in detox, not mental health patients. We were warehoused and marched to and from meals, with untrained, barely educated staff attempting to run “groups” once a day, wasting all our time. The rest of the time was inane TV in the main room, little to no reading material.

    I missed my exercise, as they take away your shoelaces so it’s hard to even walk the hall! I missed my cats. The psych hospital experience was more traumatic than whatever got me thinking about suicide in the first place! Then when they release you, it’s presented like some kind of reward. Meanwhile they get paid thousands per day from my insurance company (and about $1k from my pocket total) for holding me, so they seemed in no hurry to release me. Again, I had no say in the decision, nor was I told what I need to do to get the hell out of this pseudo-jail.
    I will never tell a “professional” or really anybody I am feeling suicidal. I will never be locked up indefinitely again, not in this state. I’m still angry about it, as you can see!

    Great article!
    Rich in Ga.

  • After reading many others’ comments, I have to say I have been hung up on my career/job title as my identity. I was a welder for 4 years prior to even thinking about college. After college, my best jobs were as a manufacturing engineer. But I had a sort-of “breakdown” in 1999-2000 as a result of 12-hour workdays with long commute, an unhealthy work environment, taking on too much in my personal life, etc.
    Hospitalized in Berkeley, agreed to ECT, fortunately no permanent memory loss. I’ve been hospitalized voluntarily for suicidal depression several times after that (usually 4-10 days inpatient), but not for several years.

    Right now I enjoy getting back into mountain biking, my morning walks, 3D drawing/modeling, 3D printing, TIG welding and woodworking projects. Like I said, I’m hoping to support myself as a freelancer doing 3D printing for local companies.
    My accomplishments have always been my identity, whether it was as a runner or bicyclist or engineer, or grad student. I could never believe any woman would be interested in just me as a person. I don’t even pursue a relationship. I live with my Mom, so I am ashamed. Although she needs help being 82-yrs. old, slightly disabled. We co-own a house. I also care for several special-needs cats with minor disabilities.

    I take psych meds, have tried self-medicating with kratom, that was fun but addicting, so I stopped. I exercise daily and eat well.
    My career was my identity. Now I don’t know who I am! I miss my job title and that cash flow too! But I don’t want to do the corporate scene anymore.
    I don’t socialize much because people ask me, “What do you do?” I have no job title anymore.

    Thanks for reading!

  • I too “lost” my career as a mechanical engineer after a few hospitalizations and eventually ECT for treating suicidal depression. I was encouraged by the “professionals” to apply for disability and not attempt to work more than part time in unchallenging positions.

    20 years later I am now trying to climb out of that hole of limitation(s). I returned to school, learned 3D CAD/modeling (computer-aided design/drafting) and got a 3D printer. My hopes are to make a living again, support myself again! I don’t want to be a mental health services consumer anymore! I’m trying to do my own business with the 3D printer, as I don’t want to return to the corporate scene in any position.
    Great article and comments too!

  • I also self-committed due to suicidal ideation in 2016, and at the suggestion of a therapist. I saw the psychiatrist for less than 5 minutes my entire 8 days there. The rest of the time was seen by a smirking nurse practitioner, was housed with mostly detoxing addicts, no therapy except for some ping-pong and drawing. Staff were untrained, unprofessional orderlies that treated us like inmates.

    I wholeheartedly agree with your last sentence, at least here in Georgia! It was an horrific experience, more traumatic than therapeutic; you’re just held until you convince them it’s all good, say anything to get released.