I was put under the crisis team last Friday as my depression hit a low and my care coordinator wanted me to have more intensive support.
Which was all fine, and they were talking about a meds review and putting me on haloperidol PRN for when the breakthrough psychosis happens when my depot wears off (still can’t believe I’m suffering from PP 2 years down the line) and putting me back on antidepressants, which I was desperate to do so all seemed like a great plan. I was going to be under their care for 4-6 weeks being seen daily for 4 weeks then gradually taper it.
Until yesterday. The psychiatrist came out and said “I’ve looked through your notes and have decided to diagnose you with Borderline Personality Disorder.” When I said “why?” She replied “you have traits of it and to be honest I don’t believe you have bipolar but there’s no other explanation for your psychotic episodes so we’ll have to keep that diagnosis too”. She then went on to say “And I also think your psychotic episodes are due to stress and not true psychosis”. She totally invalidated my experiences. I have been with 5 different psychiatrists and they all say I have psychotic episodes which is why I have to have my depot injection, but she came along and just said she didn’t believe it.
It got worse. I asked to be put back on lithium and she said no. She said I’m on aripiprazole for bipolar and that’s all I need. So instead I said I hadn’t been coping at all well since coming off venlafaxine and mirtazapine so could I go back on an antidepressant. And she said “no, medication isn’t the answer for bpd”. I begged her, through tears saying “but I’m so depressed” and she just dismissed me saying “medication won’t help”.
She then said the only treatment they would offer was DBT, and I said i’d Done it in hospital and didn’t want to do it again. She said it was the only thing they would offer me but there’s a 12 month waiting list. So what am I meant to do for 12 months?
Then she said that my planned admissions to hospital for “crisis breaks” would be stopping, even though it’s in my care plan, because “hospital won’t help bpd”. The idea was when I felt myself going into crisis I would go in on a planned admission through my care coordinator and the consultant on the ward for a break of 72 hrs - 1 week just to prevent crisis. But now that option has been taken away from me. I was due to go in next week but now I’m not.
Her parting words? Whilst I sat there sobbing begging for help she told me that the crisis team couldn’t help me so I was being discharged next week. They would continue to help until Sunday but on Monday I will be discharged. No 4-6 week support, just one week. No antidepressants, no PRN haloperidol, no plan for the breakthrough psychosis. No acknowledgement of my depression.
The BPD label seems like a terrible one to have. I’ve been told now I have been diagnosed with BPD I have to take more responsibility for my actions and stop making bad decisions, which were previously put down to symptoms of bipolar. Now I’m just seen as being reckless. So I will only see the psychiatrist every 3 months instead of every 6-8 weeks, and only see my care coordinator once per week instead of twice per week.
I feel like my care has fallen apart. When I just had a PP/Bipolar diagnosis everyone was so kind. When I spent all my money and made impulsive decisions alarm bells went off and my mh team helped me to realise this was a sign of mania/psychosis and get me help. Now I’m just seen as making poor lifestyle choices. Previously everyone felt sorry for me from just getting poorly after the birth of my child, now they see me as attention seeking.
I’ve gone from being heavily medicated, which although I hated at the time, I’m hindsight can see that it worked, to being just on aripiprazole and falling apart. But I’m not allowed on any other medication.
My care coordinator is now ignoring me. I rang her four times yesterday as I was so upset and just needed to talk to her about the psychiatrist, but she didn’t return a single one of my calls. I text her, she read it, but she didn’t reply.
I feel in shock. I feel like the psychiatrist invalidated all of my experiences with PP over the last 2 years and basically said she thought it had all been stress. I don’t know how I’m going to cope with no support and no meds.