I recorded this show “God Knows Where I Am” on PBS, probably about a month (or 2) ago, and just got around to watching it tonight and it was good! Long story short, it is about a woman, who is mentally ill and eventually dies from her mental illness.
It brought, into light, a huge gap in our mental health system. This woman was discharged from a mental health hospital into the care of no one, no one knew, not even her family that she was no longer a patient and let go. The woman was discharged and dies homeless. The gap here is that she was sick, mentally but still sick and NEEDED help, however a hospital discharges her with no plan. No followup care or outpatient care, no one to make sure she was taking her medication, that she needed to function. With no discharge plan, they didn’t know she had no home to go too and became homeless. She was not in legal trouble, so the law enforcement had no reason to handle this and so really our society was responsible for her, but who would do that? Who would help her?
Speaking from personal experience, I know that the health care system is hard to navigate but then getting into needing mental health care, wow that’s a whole other issue and that doesn’t seem to get any attention! When we hear about health care in the news, hardly EVER a mention to mental health! Then on top of it, if you have a child that needs mental health care, that’s even harder. Thankfully, we made it through that deep, deep valley with our child, however IT WAS HARD!
I want to be able to help others who are also struggling with gaps, I just am not sure where to start…
If this topic interests you at all, you may enjoy this documentary. I recorded it off of PBS, however I know that right now you an find it on Netflix as well.
My hope and prayer for you this week, is that if you think you or a loved one, are suffering from a mental illness – get help! Reach out, talk to someone. And if you are on that receiving end, someone asking you for help, my prayer for you is that you receive the guidance you need and help them!