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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun. 22, 2006
    Posts
    10

    Default Just a vent- Why is it so hard to get help?

    Sorry for another depressing OT thread. I'm really just venting here folks. I know what I NEED to do, and I'm hoping that getting this "out there" will help push me in the right direction.

    I'm bipolar. Bipolar II actually. This is something I have been living with for a very long time, but it seems to be getting worse as time goes on. I have been having moderate highs and very bad lows for as long as I can remember.

    Now the issue is, what do I do with this information? I have no health insurance. The shrink wanted to keep seeing me, but at $230 per visit and a very long waiting list, that is absolutely out of the question. The cheapest therapist I have found was $25, but I didn't like her. She was too preachy.

    The doc wanted to prescribe, but again I have no insurance and the last time I was on any sort of medication I got worse. I'd rather stay the way I am than risk what happened last time.

    I'm tired of living in my own little hell. I have no energy, no motivation, and on most days I don't think I even feel any emotions at all. I'm not suicidal, but I do spend a good part of my time wishing for lightning to strike. I haven't shared this information with anyone because I don't want my friends and loved ones to look at me differently, but I am so very tired of having to fake my way through life. I feel like once I share what has been happening to me, I will be surrendering all control and I can not have that. Control is the one thing I can not give up. I want to break this cycle. I want something to change, one way or another.

    Ugh. Anyway, sorry for yet another mental case thread. Time to go sit in the sun and think happy thoughts.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan. 31, 2010
    Location
    Alberta
    Posts
    4,020

    Default

    That is some crappy stuff. PM me anytime if you need someone to listen and offer likely useless anecdotes like the following:

    A good friend of mine was also diagnosed as bipolar. Seemed possible as she had some really crappy things happen to her when growing up...but...the meds seemed to not react as expected, and now, a few years later, they have found an underlying health issue that it seems they overlooked because it was easy to lable her as mentally unhealthy.

    She fortunately has some good understanding of medicine/the medical system, so knew to insist she see a specialist, as it was only then that she got a true diagnoses. She is now slowly weaning off the other meds and doing well.

    It took her being very bitchy to get the proper health care/diagnoses and to not back down. Of course it helps that we are in Canada.

    I think mental health issues are both really poorly understood and over diagnosed. The meds can really help...or have really crappy side effects that they don't always warn you about (I was put on something to help with my neuropathy and became seriously suicidal...scarey stuff, but hard to really talk about with people..."How are you today Karen? Oh fine, just thinking if I could drown in the dug out or if the ice is too thick..."

    I hope you are able to get the help you need AND that you have someone you feel comfortable talking to about this stuff. I think it helps to have it out in the open, within reason.

    (my friend was told many times to just go for a walk in the sun to cure her moods....it has become a standing joke. We both prefer petting kittens as a mood improver.)


    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 19, 2001
    Location
    Washington, D.C.
    Posts
    2,080

    Default

    I really feel for you--not having insurance can be its own kind of hell.

    I don't know if this will help at all, but as soon as I read your thread I thought of this: http://www.lovingfit.com/life/how-fi...olar-disorder/ . I follow her blog for the workouts, but I did skim through this article when it popped up. English is not her first language, hence the someone stilted wording. And obviously, her solution may not help you...but maybe it'll make you feel a little better (and more positive about finding a way to manage better!) knowing that someone else has been in similar shoes to yours. Also, this may sound weird, but I would feel free to email her...I never have but she seems highly responsive to messages/emails. Clearly I don't know her in person but have followed her blog long enough to get that she's a kind and caring person...it may be a long shot, but it might help.

    I wish I had more personal advice to give...hang in there and yes, think happy thoughts!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug. 14, 2000
    Location
    Clarksdale, MS--the golden buckle on the cotton belt
    Posts
    19,078

    Default

    Where do you live? Here we have Regional Mental Health Centers that are essentially free for those who need help. They have psychiatrists who prescribe and they keep up with their patients with regular medication reviews. They have cousnelors and therapists. They will find ways to get your medications, perhaps directly from the manufacturers' programs, if you need them. I know this from personal experience. If you have insurance, they will charge the insurance. If you have Medicaid they will charge Medicaid. If you have nothing, there is no charge--or rather, the individual is supposed to pay but they never bill or ask for payment.

    Look to government or foundation funded clinics. The feds have helped enormously by funding the states and demanding that the states live up to what the funding is for. Otherwise a lot of people would be SOL here.
    Last edited by vineyridge; Nov. 1, 2012 at 07:25 PM.
    "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
    Thread killer Extraordinaire



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan. 10, 2008
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    5,934

    Default

    Agree with those who have recommended looking for government funded mental health clinics... also, if you have a university that has a psychiatric medical program, they often have counselors available for cheap. If you have any religious affiliations, sometimes a church can point you in the direction of a counselor, and if not, check out a UU church--they're spiritual rather than religious and often offer very non-judgmental counseling and help to anyone.

    That being said, I totally hear you on the mental block on getting help. I know I'm depressed or bipolar or have anxiety (don't know what the specific clinical diagnosis would be yet), but part of that means that I am reluctant to actually make the effort to get the help I need. I have someplace I can go for counseling, but I don't want to talk. I am trying to force myself to make a first appointment, at least.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr. 21, 2008
    Location
    Somewhere in Texas YEEHAW!
    Posts
    850

    Default

    Glad this was written, I was about to post about this same issue myself, trying to find help for depression/bi polar but not having the money or insurance. I searched and found a local government funded mental health center, so thank you to those who suggested it. I have always had to live an ever changing lifestyle to keep my depression at bay, doing whatever I felt made me happy or getting out of situations when they made me unhappy. Now I'm tied down with responsibilities, no longer able to just up and run away from my problems, and I'm really starting to crack. The need for some sort of therapy or medicine has arisen. I feel your pain OP, just know you aren't alone. I know how hard it can be to seek out help.
    OTTB CONNECT
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr. 25, 2011
    Posts
    856

    Default

    Who would ever have believed this country would ever turn its back on its own hurting members?


    1 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2003
    Location
    Hollywood, but not the one where they have the Oscars!
    Posts
    7,633

    Default

    I was able to at least stay somewhat in the middle by adding a supplement called 5-HTP. I too have no insurance and the one time I did go to a therapist he creeped me out beyond all creepiness and I just havent been able to try it again.
    "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
    carolprudm



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan. 9, 2012
    Posts
    1,994

    Default

    I'm so sorry... Please check into your local SSA office for help.- you could qualify for some kind of disability. Also, a lot of pharm manufacturers have programs for people who can't afford meds. Ask your doctor for a referral or do a Google search. And call your local county/ city health dept for suggestions or assistance.

    I do know how difficult it is to even search out help when you need it. I wish you all the best.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 18, 2005
    Posts
    1,076

    Default

    Both the clinic/hospitals near me offer a program for people with no Ins. based on income. We qualified for both places as the clinic our regular doc is at councling isn't covered, but it is under the other towns clinic/hospital. We had to fill out an app and we pay a percent just like we would if we had ins.
    I too recently started councling. I was taken off all meds to get them out of my system before seing the Phycatrist to get put on new ones.

    I would check with your local clinic/hospital and see if they offer a program like this



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul. 22, 2012
    Location
    CA
    Posts
    828

    Default

    I'm so sorry I don't suffer from bipolar, but I do have very severe anxiety issues that are crippling without medication...and finding help/medication that works and you can afford is a nightmare w/o insurance. And that in and of itself can make seeking out further help or options very, very hard. Seek out mental health clinics in your area - they can be very helpful.

    Best of luck. My inbox is always open.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb. 14, 2010
    Location
    Southeast NC
    Posts
    221

    Default

    Another sufferer here (but not bipolar). I found help through the suicide hot line. They referred me to a therapist who saw me at whatever I could afford. Some sessions were free. Medication was prescribed and Walmart had a good deal on them. Don't give up and find someone you can talk to, even if it is an unknown person on here.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2007
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    43,041

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by gdolapp View Post
    Both the clinic/hospitals near me offer a program for people with no Ins. based on income. We qualified for both places as the clinic our regular doc is at councling isn't covered, but it is under the other towns clinic/hospital. We had to fill out an app and we pay a percent just like we would if we had ins.
    I too recently started councling. I was taken off all meds to get them out of my system before seing the Phycatrist to get put on new ones.

    I would check with your local clinic/hospital and see if they offer a program like this
    That.
    I have a friend that used to work in admissions in the local hospital mental health department and people like you describe were some of those that used their services.

    My friend is in private practice now and I know that there are patients that can't pay and she still sees them and also helps them get financial assistance.

    I hope you find help soon.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr. 10, 2006
    Posts
    7,384

    Default

    Can you try Crisis Services?

    Also agree with those who said there are some psychs in private practice that will work with you on the financials.

    Definitely seek help. Two people in my life with severe depression/anxiety and bi-polar sought help this year and their lives have been drastically altered through counseling and medication. They both regret not having sought help sooner, as the impact of treatment has been so positive.

    Best of luck and take care!
    We couldn't all be cowboys, so some of us are clowns.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr. 28, 2008
    Posts
    7,549

    Default

    **hugs** to you, OP. and don't give up on medication -- there are a lot of options and sometimes you have to keep trying until you find one that works.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr. 28, 2009
    Location
    Alberta's bread basket
    Posts
    1,662

    Default

    Hugs to you!

    It's hard to get help because there is still a social stigma attached to all mental health conditions.

    I hope you can get some help so you can get the peace and order in your life that you so crave. <hugs again>
    https://www.facebook.com/MariposaSportHorses

    Practice! Patience! Persistence!



  17. #17
    Join Date
    May. 21, 2008
    Location
    Sonoma County, California
    Posts
    2,524

    Default

    My adopted kids' bio mom lives at poverty level and is on state-funded health insurance (Medi Cal). She has schizoaffective disorder (basically schizophrenia combined with bi polar) and severe OCD. She works a minimum wage job and has had to get very creative to find the care she needs, but she does it. She gets no public assistance other than her state health insurance (and Medi Cal can be very crappy coverage).

    Can you contact your county's mental health services and find out what your options are? Alternately, can you get a friend or family member to assist you with this quest and navigating the red tape? Sometimes having someone who will serve as your 'advocate' can be useful if you are immobilized with depression.

    I send you hugs. Not an easy road ahead of you, but with meds and other changes (my kids' mom swears by fish oil!) you DO have a good life ahead of you. Hang in there.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    11,372

    Default

    When you're depressed, it can be really hard to even pick up a phone book or hit google to look for resources. Totally get that. But I do believe that the resources are likely out there. In most communities, there's at least a free clinic that can see you--a community mental health center. Also, places like Rite Aid and Walgreens and CVS now have things in place for the uninsured to get meds (generic) at a majorly reduced rate. Like 10 bucks for 30 days of meds which is better than what some of us can get WITH our insurance!

    Most of the meds for BP are now available generic.

    I know you said you don't like the meds, but for many, they are the only thing that really grants long term relief from symptoms.

    For counseling, again, a community mental health type place.

    If you want some help looking, I'd be happy to help google around for stuff in your area. Just PM me where you are. I just did this for my mom who has a heart issue, had a stroke, has depression. THere are actually more options out there for completely uninsured or unemployed than there are for underemployed uninsured though. So if you do not qualify for medicaid right now, this could be more challenging. But it's possible!

    Best wishes!
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov. 3, 2006
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    2,057

    Default

    Hugs. While we do have health insurance, I do know that the large mental health services place near us works on a sliding scale.



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