Daycare Triage

19 09 2011

You watch enough TV shows and you tend to pick up a fair amount of information. Ok, some of this information is misleading but sometimes you get little tidbits that stick in the mind. For example, battlefield triage.Battlefield triage is the system by which you treat casualties, especially at times when there are multiple wounded. It’s very simple, if they’re screaming they’re fine, if they’re quiet, they need help.

In the reception prisons, the first prison you get sent to, they’re taught that it’s the quiet ones who are far more likely to attempt suicide. Again, like on the battlefield, if they’re banging on their cell door then they’re fine. If you barely hear or see them then it’s time to be concerned.

And so it is with mental health…. oh, wait, no it’s not. You kick off you get attention, you remain quiet and behaved then you’re left to your own devices.

An example of this would be Urban Worriors post about her experiences with her community care. Unsettling to read as it kind of echos what’s going on in other peoples care. That it appears we’re in daycare or something, reduced to being 3 years old again. Why? Because it’s easier for staff to do it this way.

Just want to clarify here that working on the wards is difficult and so sometimes that’s the way it is. However, it doesn’t forgive the fact that vulnerable people tend to get little help. As my comment on the post by Urban Worrier says; You kick off, you get attention, you don’t kick off and behave, you don’t get attention.

Should it be this way? Should we act out every time we feel we need a little care? Do we have to become the children who scream the place down to get attention? If we do then that’s bad parenting as it reinforces bad behaviour.

As ever, it’s got a little ranty but then I have experience of being at my most vulnerable and receiving no help at all. Being in police cells, having only the top half clothed as the “one size fits all” anti suicide clothing actually comes in a variety of sizes. Being sat there completely alone, ignored, desperate to get out and willing to do whatever it took, to say whatever it took, to get out of there. All the while the people banging on their cell doors getting some form of attention. All the while I sat there huddled in a corner, using a sheet to provide some form of dignity. The only care I received that wasn’t complete shit coming from an paramedic they had to call in.

So yeah, I think I get to reserve the right to get a little ranty on the subject, and I haven’t even brought up the crap care whilst on the ward, or the indifference of the CMHT.




6 responses

19 09 2011
Zoë Smith

Echoes my experience to date, I am always “the quiet one”, I’m also “sweet little Zoe”.

I am in fact screaming inside and never let my apparent “sweetness or littleness” get in the way of my wanton self-destruction. They look and see the quietness, the littleness and the sweetness and they leave me in my own hands.

Much love


19 09 2011

Bravo bravo bravo, well said.

It seems only when i’m manic and don’t want hospital attention do i get help. When i am depressed or struggling (quietly) then i am nothing to the cmht.
Not deemed ill enough to warrant attention. More like i am not bothering them enough or endangering the general public. I dunno. I just don’t, but i think the child like behaviour analogy was very apt. xx Nice post. love ya

19 09 2011
Zoë Smith

Just to echo that too! Except when I am manic and or psychotic and a public nuisance then they send the police after me and try to section sweet little Zoe!

((hugs)) to you both


19 09 2011

Nothing useful to say, but did want to note that this is so fucking true. To the point where I keep telling myself not to be compliant any more, but all the time knowing I haven’t the balls not to be.

19 09 2011

Yup. All true. And posts above, true. And it’s led me to wonder- is it a function of being madosphere people, that we sit quietly sucking it up, trying to cope, whereas the attention-seekers are too busy soaking up all the love in the room to ever put a bit out by typing quietly into a little piece of black plastic (‘cos I’m increasingly thinking that we aren’t blogging for ourselves- it kinda looks like it, but the posts and comments we make are actually to help others).

How you didn’t use that sheet to effect your demise I simply do not know- your description was so evocative (and SHIT! how come you were fucking treated this way?!).

19 09 2011

The temptation was to use the sheet but it was a lovely thick piece of shit which meant that I couldn’t use it as a ligature. How come I was treated this way? I’ve asked myself the same question, the only thing I can think of is that I’m mental, who cares? I’m not endeared to the local constabulary

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