UPDATE--how to get hospitalized

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by elisem, Aug 19, 2007.

  1. elisem

    elisem New Member


    I am so grateful to all who responded! I was hoping to get advice right away, and I did. Thank you.

    Unfortunately, it was a complete waste of time. We bundled the family into the car (husband in the backseat to keep difficult child from hurting anyone) and drove to the children's hospital int he next town where difficult child greatly disturbed everyone in the ER (including the staff and especially the elderly volunteers) with his screaming, thrashing, kicking and trying to run away. After a while, our dear little easy child ALSO started screaming after about two hours there. There was no psychiatric doctor on duty, but the resident got one on the phone who said that there's nothing anyone can do to help until he's been diagnosed, and maybe we should call around and try to see if we can get him in somewhere sooner than our scheduled appointment at the end of September? oh, and in the meanwhile we might want to remove anything in his room that he could use as a weapon (hard enough to figure out what to do with the toys and furniture--we live in a four room house!, but what's to keep him from punching through his windows or kicking the door down?). And, oh yes, if we get really desperate, we should call our insurance company and see what they suggest!!!!!

    So, in the end, after a lot of disturbance and condemnation (I haven't yet developed a thick enough skin not to be bothered by the truly appalled looks on people's faces when they see difficult child in full throttle--and I got a lot of that today, believe me! I kept waiting for someone to call the police on us for the methods we had to use to restrain him!)

    Anyway, we think he's probably bipolar--it runs in the family (two aunts), and all the symptoms fit. Tomorrow I'll start pestering the psychiatric doctor's office to see if we can possibly get in sooner--but I have my doubts. Everyone was shocked we were able to get an appointment as early as we did (end of september). I'll see if I can possibly get in if there's a cancellation (one advantage to homeschooling--you can change plans quickly!), but we're more than an hour away, so we'll have to have at least a little notice.

    Wish me luck!

  2. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    That doesn't sound right. If the child is a danger to himself or others, he should be admitted, diagnosis or no. That is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. Call your psychiatrist asap and let them know what happened; maybe they can get you in sooner. Also call your pediatrician and do the same thing.

    It might have been better had someone called the police on you guys...you might have gotten him admitted then. I can't believe that doctor said that. I'm just stewing.
  3. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Wow.......I am shocked, shocked, shocked! I have never heard of an ER not taking a patient in a mental crisis. I guess I should have asked before - but the ER did have a children's psychiatric hospital attached to it, right?
  4. elisem

    elisem New Member

    Well--I agree, but I can't say I'm surprised. The reason we're taking him to a psychiatrist an hour away is that our pediatrician told us flat out that there simply aren't enough psychiatrists in our rather backward part of the country. We were warned repeatedly but her and by other famillies and even another psychiatrist's office that it takes months and moths to get ANYTHING done around here--that's why we were so thrilled to get an appointment for a diagnosis with only a two month wait.

    I'll let you in on a secret--when we have our appointment, I'm going to take a packed bag for difficult child, because psychiatrist is located at another, much larger children's hospital, and if he's still the way he's been for the past several days, I'm hoping THEY'LL admit him.

    Ok, that's awful, saying I hope they'll admit him to a hospital. He's only seven, for heaven's sake! But I'm under the impression that if he's in a hospital they'll be able to determine what sort of help he needs in order for him to get help a whole lot more quickly than if we just have to keep bringing him back for office visits.

    still hopeful,

  5. elisem

    elisem New Member

    Weeping Willow--

    I THOUGHT they had one, but apparently I thought wrong. The last time we thought about trying to get a diagnosis, when difficult child was five, we were referred to the psychiatric unit at this hospital. Of course, when we talked to them, with a psychologist diagnosis of "probably ADHD, too early to know for sure" they said it would be about six months before they'd be able to see him, and since he was starting to stabilize at the time, we decided not to bother. And indeed, he kept improving fairly steadily (ok, it was 3 steps forward, 2 steps back, but the overall trend was toward improvement), until a few weeks ago when his behavior started to go very downhill steadily, and a few days ago when he's become pretty violent. (He's always been a little violent when he was in a rage, but his rages are fairly infrequent when he's stable--the last few days, he's been in a rage most of the time.)

    Ah well. Live and learn.

  6. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Take him to that hospital now, while he's in crisis mode. Tell them you have an appointment with the psychiatrist and give the psychiatrist's name. Even if they don't admit him, they'll let psychiatrist know he was seen and that could get you in faster.
  7. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    I agree with WynterGrace, I would take him to that hospital now. I have never been turned away from an ER in crisis mode for my son, but they all had psychiatric units within the hospital.
  8. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I just read your other post and this one. It was when my difficult child was dangerous in the car that he was first hospitalized. I believe there was also an incident in the car before his second hospitalization.

    It does sound like he needs to be hospitalized-I hope that somehow you can see the psychiatrist sooner than later or as Heather and WW said take him to the hospital now. Hugs.