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Thread: Have we any mental health professionals among us?

  1. #1
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    Have we any mental health professionals among us?

    I really could use some guidance. She's been really incredibly, unbearably variable – sometimes she’s so wonderful, and sometimes just growling, on the verge of crazy, nasty. Might it be a real, clinical multiple personality problem? She switches only in blocks of days, or day to day, or maybe once or twice a day. I've wondered if maybe she's bipolar, but that's more a switch between manic and depressed rather than nice and possessed, isn't it?

    I've wondered about chemical influences but I really don't see any signs of that, and it sounds like something of a family problem.

    She's aware of it, though I’m not sure to what degree, and there is no reasoning with the dark side. After two really traumatic days, she stood in the kitchen the next morning and said (calmly, not manically) "I feel so happy today… I just don't understand it.” So sympathy conquerors my fury at feeling like a tortured prisoner in my own home [don't worry, I know she never would hurt me physically], and I really would like to help her.

    Does anyone have any idea what this might be, or if there's any way to get free help for it from a sufficiently qualified professional in central NJ, or maybe Philadelphia?

  2. #2
    Who is this person?? Family member? Caregiver? Friend?

    First she should see her primary care physician. There are medical problems that should first be ruled out such as thyroid problems.

    The physician should also be familiar with mental health resources in your community. Often these are through county hospitals or clinics. Sometimes there are services that are less expensive or free through teaching hospitals or general health care clinics as well.

    Is she totally uninsured? Does she qualify for Medicaid?

    (KLD)

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    Senior Member zillazangel's Avatar
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    oops, meant to send as pm.
    Last edited by zillazangel; 10-22-2010 at 10:38 PM.

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    Moderator jody's Avatar
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    sorry you are going through this. she could be bipolar. the transition to winter or spring were the worst times for my bipolar ex. and yes he could change moods in an intsant. she could be very much on her way to normal with a short term stay at a mental health facility. sometimes with very little medication, sometimes it takes a few tries to see what works, but well, have you asked her to please consider being admitted? Grand View Hospital, which is north 309, sellersville pa, has a good acute short term program. Horsham clinic, has an adult program for emergencies too. a few times neighbors called police, and gave my ex a lift to these places. twice he went five years between manic episodes, so it may be worth making the call and having her admitted so she can get stable again.

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    Moderator jody's Avatar
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    Norristown, building 50 sucks really, but if you have no insurance, and she needs to be admitted, that is an option. you should be able to apply for medicaid on her behalf if she is not able, however, if she is admittted into norrisstown state, she will be appointed a social worker, and follow up care.

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    Thanks everyone. I’m not sure yet what I’m going to do. KLD, I’m not trying to be evasive, but I feel an obligation to protect her privacy at least a little bit. She gets NJ “charity care” and not Medicaid, could not tell me why. Thank you Jody. I likely will be PMing you.

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    Random,
    While multiple personalities is not nearly as rare as the public seems to think it is (now called dissociative identity disorder) it never just randomly occurs. It is the result of a combination of factors occuring in childhood, and I am not talking about relatively small trauma issues that many people have to endure. I am talking about literal massive psychological trauma, usually at the hands of the caretaker's a child is totally dependent upon. It results from literal torture, sexual abuse, psychological abuse, and the legitimate fear that you may be killed by those who should love you. It also must occur when the child is quite young and dependent, hence making the betrayal of even greater consequence. If this person has a background in that realm it is a possibility, but I would think of other conditions first in the absence of those horrors.

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    Senior Member marycsm77's Avatar
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    Random,.

    I know you're trying to protect the person you're posting about but based on what you've said it would just be speculation by anyone. In fact no matter how much information you gave it would be speculation. KLD is right, "she" could have something physical going on that is causing these changes in mood and behavior. If she doesn't already have a psychiatric hx then you would start with her PCP to r/o anything physical. There are many things that can cause changes in mood and/or behavior that are physical in origin and way too many particulars and variables that could play into whats going on. A PCP or psychiatrist would have to take h&p on the patient. Age, physical hx, length of time the patient has been exhibiting this behavior, has it ever happened before, is there a psych hx, is she taking any prescribed medications or using any drugs? just to give you some examples.

    If she is already taking psych meds and has a history, is she decompensating?

    I think your best bet is to get your friend to her PCP or if she has psychiatric hx get her to her psychiatrist or clinic etc.

    You can look on the NJ Department of Mental Health Website and see what is available if indeed it is something psychiatric if the pcp is not knowledgeable enough about this.

    If she becomes psychotic you can go to the emergency room, if she will go with you otherwise you can get a police escort. If you explain the situation to them on the phone, make if very clear her behavior the best you can. Don't use the word PSYCHOTIC whether you know what it is, or think she is, not to the police, they have a very different definition of the word than what it really means clinically. I wouldn't used the word possessed either. They automatically assume violence, trust me. Unless of course she is and then you would report exactly what is going on, however you have said she has never exhibited any type of violent behavior toward you or herself?

    NY has mobile crisis teams also, I would imagine NJ does also. You could find on the internet. If someone is in crisis, psychotic, suicidal etc. They will come to your house, either a psychiatric social worker, psychiatric nurse, and will do an assessment of the patient at your house. They are very experienced and this is what they do and can often be instrumental in getting someone to the hospital who is non-compliant IF INDEED anything escalates into psychotic behavior or violent behavior.

    These are just some suggestions if anything escalates that is clearly beyond what you can do to help her yourself. Getting her to her md if no psych hx is the best thing you can do to start.

    good luck

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    Thank you so much. My head is spinning. I will continue to explore whether I might gain her consistent interest and cooperation in any of this, because I can't screw up her life. Yes, thank you Eileen, her experiences would qualify in spades if she's telling me the truth. I’ll be back.

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    Senior Member marycsm77's Avatar
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    Random,

    Just to clarify a little what I wrote regarding using a police escort, ambulance or a psychiatric mobile crisis team. These are used for psychiatric emergencies and are not the protocols for someone who is having non-acute psychiatric or emotional problem/s. The police department have strict criteria that must be met before they can take someone against their will to an emergency room. The mobile crisis team also has criteria that must be met however the criteria is less rigid than the police. They are also much more experienced obviously, the patient will still go by police escort but the person that comes from the team to evaluate the person will be able to make the connections at the hospital and with the police for transport.

    I wasn't trying to scare you at all, i was just trying to give you some options in case this is a psychiatric situation and if it should ever become a psychiatric emergency.

    Otherwise you are being a good friend helping this person to get either the physical and/or psychiatric care she needs. It is kind and noble of you.
    Last edited by marycsm77; 10-31-2010 at 04:27 PM. Reason: adding

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