More shootings

When is it going to end?  More untreated mental illness, societal ills and anger.  Some attacks are by terrorists, disgruntled people, racists, deranged, etc. Our government does nothing. They talk about declaring war on ISIS, asking for prayers, moments of silence, vigils, constant news coverage with opinions.  hashtags # blue livematter, #all lives matter, #blacklives matter.  Politicians chiming in on what they would do if they were in power.  The NRA declares better and more guns would solve the problem.  If police lives matter, you wouldn’t give guns to civilians that have repeating rounds.  If black lives matter, you wouldn’t call to hang president obama or call black people thugs.  If all lives matter, you wouldn’t dimish the deaths with an I’ll pray for you.  No one ever said only black lives matter.  We are acutely aware that black gangs kill each other.  The difference is- if Tyrone kills Damone in the street, Tyrone is apprehended and prosecuted.  No one mentions anything disparaging about Damones past or if he smoked a joint in 2014.  If Damone is shot by a white or a cop, they dig into his past to justify it.  They run his name through the mud.  They find every excuse, mental illness, feared for their life,etc for the shooter who may or may not go to trial. Thats what it is about accountability.  If I shoot someone, even in self defense, they should at least look into it.  Anyone can say I am afraid and I thought he had a gun.  Who can challenge it?  Dead men tell no tales.  When they don’t find a gun, oh they reached in their pocket.  I thought they were going for a gun.  There hands were up, well they reached for something and then put them up.  Cops have tasers, clubs, cars, and many weapons at their disposal.  Why is the gun the first choice to solve any problem?  I don’t think all lives matter, or we wouldn’t be so quick to choose a gun to solve a problem. I want my own hashtag.  #Anne for peace.

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Virginian pilot article

I probably should not watch the news.  I get too upset over injustice.  A prisoner in our jail who was mentally ill died.  He was in jail for shoplifting candy.  Most times he would spend a few days in and be out.  He was detained for months on a mental health order.  No bed was available.  He did not get proper treatment.  He was malnourished and suicidal.  He died.  The news papers and TV are all over it.  But there are no beds it isn’t our fault.  Why was he in jail so long for a shoplifting offense.  He wasn’t even convicted.  Jail guards are not prepared to deal with chronic mental illness.  He was in solitary, which deteriorated his condition.  His family tried to get him out.  Many visits were denied due to his behaviors. If there was no bed, he should have been sent home with a mental health skill building agency to work with him.  Oh wait, there aren’t enough of those.  Why is that?  I applied in 02/15 to be a mental health skill builder provider.  I was number 178 on the list.  Now in May I am number 38 on the list.  They have two workers in Richmond processing all the applications for developmental group homes, outpatient, MHSB, TDT, IHH, IOP, substance abuse, and transitional living.  The whole state of Virginia has two workers to process at the present time 258 applications.  This isn’t the department that audits and monitors.  I bet the fraud unit to recoup medicaid money has more than two workers.

The young man needed help.  His family wanted to help him.  We let him down by trying to save money.

Do the math.  Each agency would probably hire about 10 workers at over minimum wage.   258 x 10=2,580 jobs in our state.  New graduates just out of school in all parts of the state. One of those workers could have helped him, but the paperwork has bogged down their agency.

We should be ashamed.  Call your state delegate and senator.  The next person might be someone you love.

Accusations

How often do you put up with something before you leave?  How long do you let something go before you complain about it?  What level do you complain to someone high up?

The scenario.  I had a client call the EAP over four months from the visit.  They alleged that I spent the entire session on the phone.  Who would sit in a session for an hour while someone was on the phone?  Why wait four months to complain about it?  The whole thing of suspect from the beginning. My word against hers.  I have answered the phone during a session, but I usually do not.  After hours you don’t have a secretary, and a client could be in crisis.  The next client could be calling for directions.

So now I hang in the balance and could be kicked off the panel on the word of one person.  I even sent a letter to her about why I hadn’t seen her in awhile. Why would I do that if I had been on the phone for an hour?

I shouldn’t let this bother me.  My practice has seen almost 128 clients in a year with no compalints.  128 vs. 1.  Do counselors get the benefit of the doubt?

Patty Duke

I was saddened by the death of Patty Duke.  She was a champion for the rights of the mentally ill.  She bravely disclosed her diagnosis in a time when people didn’t do so.  She spoke out for others.  She was a celebrity that used her fame for good.  I will always remember her performance of Annie Sullivan in Helen Keller.  She was courageous.  She even wrote about her experience in her autobiography Call Me Anna.   Others have made public their illnesses after her brave disclosure.  Now it has less stigma and shame. Her son Sean Austin encourages people to send money to mental health or to her foundation.

www.pattyduke.net/links.html

The Patty Duke Mental health project.

My prayers and condolences to her family and friends.  Let her legacy live on.

 

 

First page of my novel

I finally have started my novel on my career as a therapist.  I will post exercpts from time to time and hope you will critique it.  I will try to be as honest as possible without giving away any client privledged information.  I also will shed light on various diagnosis, failed treatments, modalities.  I hope to have me grow as a person and learn as I write.  Many people go into this field wanting to save the world.  They have no clue.  The textbooks do not tell you about assessments in the hood, walking the park to engage the homeless, going into homes to look after children,  watching people detox,  doing therapy in a soup kitchen and jail.  It is a journey for me and for my clients. I also apologize to my first clients that I learned with and hope they got better anyway.

And don’t get me started on insurance billing.  They don’t touch that.

A to Z coping strategy

Diane Webb fellow blogger suggests using each letter of the alphabet to list something you are grateful for right now.  My list.

A- applesauce

B- Bella and Be Be my dogs and Beverly my daughter

C- church

D- David my Dad and David my husband ( 2 people)

E- electricity

F- French fried

G-gladiolas

H- the Hauers my new family

I- ice cream (duh)

J- jelly

K- klutzs

L- Lauren

M- music

N- noise (it means I can hear)

O- oolong tea

P- pizza

Q- questions

R- rest

S- salvation

T- teachers

U- universal love

V-Virginia my state

W- words

X- extraordinary life

Y- yarn to knit

Z- zest for living

You try it.

 

Super Tuesday not so super

I was watching the results of super Tuesday and kicking myself for doing it.  Everyone is claiming to be Americas choice and savior.  I noticed that my state; the state of Monroe, Jefferson, Washington, Madison, Wilson, Tyler, Taylor and Harrison picked Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. The Presidents who railed against political parties, gave woman suffrage, formed the constitution to separate church and state.  They created the Monroe Doctrine, the declaration of independence and the bill of rights.  This is what they have chosen to represent out state.

I hate to tell Donald Trump but my Irish great great Grandfather hid on a boat to come here from Ireland to keep from starving.  He didn’t have a passport or a visa.  He was treated like crap in New York and migrated to the mountains of VA to remain and impoverished laborer his whole life. He married a local woman and had 8 children, one was my great grandfather.  He was not a rapist or a drug dealer.

I have relatives that did Loftin Walton, Great Grandpa wiggington, Robert bohon, and a bishop.  Two died leaving widows and numerous children. That war was the worst in our nation and we still suffer from it.  I look at statues for the confederate dead with mixed feelings.  They fought for a cause that was wrong with slavery, but correct in terms of states rights. They fought for Virginia.

I remember tales of my mountain relatives working along side the negro trying to survive and they all helped each other.  They didn’t need food stamps and grew their own food and shared with others.

My Father, my uncle and my husband are veterans and gun owners.  We hardly are what you would call extremists, richies, bigots.  We don’t have to take our gun to chipotle or Walmart to show how patriotic we are to others.  Their service and actions show that, not a gun.  And by the way, Obama hasn’t come for them and never will.

My Grandpa Doyle was my favorite human being on earth.  He was a lifelong union democrat.  He would argue politics with his republican sons.  I grew up in a house where woman could speak their mind.  I was college educated and it was encouraged that I do so.  I remember taking my grandma to vote and we each voted for a separate candidate.  Everyone discussed points of view and got along.   My Grandpa had black people in his house when it wasn’t cool.  He worked for the rail road and thought Jim Crow laws were stupid as he had to separate the passengers when they left WV into VA.  He loved JFK and thought his death was the greatest tragedy of his life. He worked his ass off from a small child until he was 72 years old.  Yet, he didn’t begrudge people being poor and getting help.  He helped many of his poor relatives, his church without complaint.  He sent nephews and nieces to college. He died a man with money in the bank and his funeral at the age of 93 was standing room only.

I wish I could ask him about the candidates running for president and get his take on it.  I guess he would be a Hillary supporter since he is a Democrat.  Yet I am not sure he would like a woman president.  He would not like Donald Trump because he is a Yankee.  He tended to prefer people that worked hard, not behind desks.  He didn’t like racists.  He also told me his Mother died from having too many children.  He would have thought the crap about birth control was stupid.  He lost his mother when he was 12, when she and her 9th child died together.  He attributed too many kids to poverty.  He only had two children, because he didn’t want to lose my grandma to childbirth.  They were married 59 years.  He wouldn’t have liked candidates that were divorced.  That was a moral failing to him to not keep your wife happy and not to cherish her.  He read the Bible every day for 53 years.  He would not recognize who we call Christians today. I am quite sure he would be for immigration.  His Mother was part Cherokee. He was very family oriented.  He talked about Ireland fondly, even though he never went there.  It was a part of him.

He would not like all the debates with yelling and name calling.  Men act like gentleman.  He always wore a hat and tipped it to a lady.  He could get the point across without  being an asshole.  He never had a gun that I knew of, but I also know anyone that would have crossed him.  When the blacks moved into his neighborhood, he was the last white to move out.  He didn’t see why he had to move, just because some black folks moved in.  He made friends with them.  He eventually had to move because the neighborhood became dangerous.  He missed his house and called the owners every day until he died to check  on it.

I cannot vote for any of the Republican candidate right now.  They are too extreme for me. I don’t think walls will keep anyone out of our country.  I don’t think corporations are people and they aren’t a religion.  Gay people are not the enemy and big government interventions in my bedroom are not needed. I don’t want to hear someone’s religious testimony at a political rally. I don’t care about your religion to govern me.