Painful Memories, Hospitalization, Healing: Answers to Questions

Psychiatric medication to erase painful memories

Don’t you dare take drugs to deal with your past!  If you want to take drugs then at least be honest and go get some crack.  Psych meds are just as dangerous and just as irresponsible and ineffective.  If you have painful memories then face them and deal with them.  Get a good therapist who’s got the guts to stand by you while you go back and look at the hard stuff.

Erase painful memories?  They are who you are, babe, and you can’t un-ring the bell.  Whatever happened, happened.  Deal with it.
My therapist told me that what he learned from watching his wife go through labor pains was that you have to go through the pain to get to the good stuff.  Besides, psych meds don’t erase
painful memories.  They just mask them for a while then they come get you again.

Until you turn and face the memories, you will never be free.  Find somebody good to stand with you.

I knew a woman who was repeatedly raped by her father.  As an adult she had the chance to send him to jail but she copped a plea, saying that he was old and blah, blah, blah.  Consequently, she
is still depressed, drugged and frequently suicidal.  You have to face whatever happened and do whatever should have been done at the time.  It is never too late to fight back.
Presumably it is something that happened when you were a child and did not have the power to act.  Now you are an adult and you can exact justice.  Do it.

Therapist hospitalized me

This reminds me of a story.  An empathic therapist with an MSW and decades of experience had never found it necessary or appropriate to send anyone for hospitalization until one day he got a woman who was threatening to kill others and then herself.  She was very much in control and was seriously dangerous so he sent her over to the admitting psychiatrist at the hospital.

After while the psychiatrist calls and tells the therapist that he cannot admit the patient because he would not be able to work with her.

“Um, why not?” asks the therapist.

“Because she has inappropriately used a degrading term to refer to sexual activity,” he says.

“You mean she said ‘fuck’?” asks the therapist.

“If you must call it that, then yes,” replies the psychiatrist.

Sometimes psychiatrists get so out of touch with reality that become a danger to us all.

My psychiatrist is making me do partial hospitalization for fibro

That is bullshit.  Your psychiatrist cannot “make” you accept
any kind of hospitalization for “fibro”—I assume you are referring to
fibromyalgia?  No kind or amount of hospitalization will have any effect on fibromyalgia.  If he’s telling you it will then he is either
lying or stupid and you should report him to the NYS Office of Professional Medical Conduct.

In fact, your psychiatrist cannot make you do anything at all unless you are a danger to yourself or others.  You’re letting him tell you what to do.  Why?  Answer that question and you will be on your way to taking your life back from the psychiatric system.
Noncompliance is the beginning of healing.

What would a narcissist file a lawsuit against you for?

I would file a law suit against you for calling me a narcissist.   On August 1, 2007, NYS Governor Spitzer signed the “person first” bill (which that dorkhead, Governor Pataki, had vetoed).  That means you first refer to someone as a person, then move on to the disabling condition, e.g., I am not a diabetic; I am a person who has diabetes.  Likewise, you are not a schizophrenic; you are a person diagnosed with schizophrenia.  People are not diseases; they have diseases, as well as many other physical and personal traits and characteristics, some of which are quite splendid.

Why are soul mates such bastards?

Babe, if you think he’s a bastard then he’s not your soul mate.  Your attraction is probably just hormonal.  Soul mates are people who’ve
spent several lifetimes wearing compatible grooves in one another.  Every time my soul mate and I tried to have a fight, we’d end up laughing so hard we couldn’t stay mad.  (And you’re a fool for thinking this was an appropriate question for the Internet.  Turn off your computer and develop some friendships.)

What is therapy?

That is an incredibly good question and in my half century in
the psychiatric system I’ve never heard anyone ask it before.  My best answer would be that it is a relationship between a trained professional and person in pain, and that it results in the professional getting paid and the person feeling better.  If either of those two conditions is not being met then it is not therapy.  The
relationship is usually talk but it can be art, music or some other form of communicating feelings and perceptions.

How to tell your psychiatrist he is not helping you

Just exactly like you said it here:  “Doctor, you’re not helping me.”  What’s the worst he can do?  Kick you out of his practice?  If he’s not helping you then that would be a blessing.  He will almost certainly tell you that it’s because you’re doing something wrong.  Don’t believe it.  Trust yourself.  You know you better than anybody else.

Do hospital chairs supposed to be locked down in patients’ rooms?

I’ve been hospitalized in a Catholic hospital, a teaching hospital, a state hospital, the National Institute of Mental Health, a private
hospital, and CPEP (Community Psychiatric Emergency Program).  The only place where I have seen chairs bolted to the floor is the CPEP waiting room.

Hutchings Psychiatric  Center closing

It’ll never happen.  Hutchings is owned and operated by the state.  Where will they put the crazies if they close Hutchings?  The state closed Four Winds private hospital, which was twice as good as Hutchings, because it was a private hospital.  Besides, Hutchings spent a ton of money on a unit they just opened.

Community General Hospital psychiatrists

Upstate Medical [Center] psychiatry

The latest word on the street is that SUNY Upstate Medical
Center, which has been approved to buy out Community General
Hospital, will be moving all its inpatient psychiatric beds from Upstate to Community.

Do schizos look different?

Nope, they look exactly like you.


About annecwoodlen

I am a tenth generation American, descended from a family that has been working a farm that was deeded to us by William Penn. The country has changed around us but we have held true. I stand in my grandmother’s kitchen, look down the valley to her brother’s farm and see my great-great-great-great-great-grandmother Hannah standing on the porch. She is holding the baby, surrounded by four other children, and saying goodbye to her husband and oldest son who are going off to fight in the Revolutionary War. The war is twenty miles away and her husband will die fighting. We are not the Daughters of the American Revolution; we were its mothers. My father, Milton C. Woodlen, got his doctorate from Temple University in the 1940’s when—in his words—“a doctorate still meant something.” He became an education professor at West Chester State Teachers College, where my mother, Elizabeth Hope Copeland, had graduated. My mother raised four girls and one boy, of which I am the middle child. My parents are deceased and my siblings are estranged. My fiancé, Robert H. Dobrow, was a fighter pilot in the Marine Corps. In 1974, his plane crashed, his parachute did not open, and we buried him in a cemetery on Long Island. I could say a great deal about him, or nothing; there is no middle ground. I have loved other men; Bob was my soul mate. The single greatest determinate of who I am and what my life has been is that I inherited my father’s gene for bipolar disorder, type II. Associated with all bipolar disorders is executive dysfunction, a learning disability that interferes with the ability to sort and organize. Despite an I.Q. of 139, I failed twelve subjects and got expelled from high school and prep school. I attended Syracuse University and Onondaga Community College and got an associate’s degree after twenty-five years. I am nothing if not tenacious. Gifted with intelligence, constrained by disability, and compromised by depression, my employment was limited to entry level jobs. Being female in the 1960’s meant that I did office work—billing at the university library, calling out telegrams at Western Union, and filing papers at a law firm. During one decade, I worked at about a hundred different places as a temporary secretary. I worked for hospitals, banks, manufacturers and others, including the county government. I quit the District Attorney’s Office to manage a gas station; it was more honest work. After Bob’s death, I started taking antidepressants. Following doctor’s orders, I took them every day for twenty-six years. During that time, I attempted%2
This entry was posted in Benjamin Rush Center, Community General Hospital, CPEP, depression, doctor, drugs, Hutchings Psychiatric Center, Inpatient psychiatry, mental illness, patient, physician, psychiatric patient, psychiatrist, psychiatry, St. Joseph's Hospital, Unit 3-6, Upstate Medical Center and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Painful Memories, Hospitalization, Healing: Answers to Questions

  1. Britney says:

    Heya! I understand this is kind of off-topic however I needed to ask.
    Does operating a well-established website like
    yours require a large amount of work? I am completely new to
    writing a blog but I do write in my diary every day. I’d like to start a blog
    so I can easily share my own experience and feelings online.
    Please let me know if you have any kind of ideas or tips for brand
    new aspiring bloggers. Appreciate it!

    • annecwoodlen says:

      Funny you should ask. I am just now trying to figure out how to increase my readership. My best day was 682 viewers, but it’s currently down to 150 because I don’t exactly know what I’m doing.

      First, I don’t have a website; I have a blog–there’s a difference. As to how much work it takes, that all depends on how much work you want to put into it. It only takes about ten minutes to post a blog; it can take hours and hours to actually write the bleeping thing. I can write about a thousand words in about 90 minutes. It depends on how long you want your blog postings to be and how often you want to publish. At my peek, I could do two thousand-word blogs every day. Now I’m down to doing one a few times a week. Maybe we should start a blogger’s support group. Writing in your diary every day is a good first-start for discipline. My blog was set up by a friend because I was clueless. You might look around your community for someone with hands-on experience, but I haven’t been able to find anyone with experience in my community. The wonderful thing about blogging is that you get to put your experience out there in the world without being blocked by an editor or publisher. The sad thing is that nobody may be interested. That’s where it gets into the questions of who you are writing for and what you are writing about. On this blog, I wrote for people at risk in the psychiatric system, and I wrote about what I learned from my experience. Please keep in touch at

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