Psych Central

Need Help But Not Sure How To Get It

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

I need help. I’m 16 years old and I am falling apart. I have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, ptsd, depression, and generalized anxiety disorder. My parents won’t bring me to a therapist anymore and I can’t go to my phyciatrist because we don’t have to money. My parents won’t listen to me when I say I have a problem. I don’t want to die but I black out and hurt myself a lot and it just keeps getting worse. I don’t think I’ll be able to control myself next time something bad happens.

I won’t even get out of bed anymore unless my boyfriend wants me to go somewhere but my problems have been affecting him so greatly lately that I just feel guilty when I’m with him. I try to be happy, I do but there’s this voice in my head and it just tells me everything that’s wrong with me and tell’s me that I’m worthless and that I’d be better off dead.

I have several medical ailments that my mother won’t bring me to the doctor for, including a test that will determine whether I need my gallbladder out or not and a rash that completely covers both of my hands.

I don’t want to live anymore and I don’t like feeling like that. I need help and don’t know how to get it. I’m so confused. I want to go back to the mental hospital but can’t get there. How do I get there, what do I do? I’m afraid of myself.

I’m afraid to sleep because of my nightmares, I’m afraid of almost everything. I cry all the time, sometimes I don’t even know why. Please tell me how to get real help, please. I’m so scared, why do I feel like this?

I apologize for the unorganization of this but I just had to get everything I could think of out.

A. There is no need to apologize. Everything you wrote made perfect sense. You are suffering greatly and your parents won’t help you. This may be in part because they can’t afford treatment. It also may be because they are simply ignoring you or don’t believe there is something wrong. You’re been diagnosed with multiple psychiatric illnesses and you’re currently experiencing suicidal ideation. These symptoms require immediate attention.

The other concern is that you have a problem with your gallbladder and an unidentified rash on your hands. These conditions may require medical treatment. At the very least, they need to be assessed by a medical professional.

Your parents don’t have the right to ignore your physical and mental health needs. By law they have to help you access treatment especially for a possible medical concern until you’re 18 years old. If they cannot afford health care for you the president recently re-authorized a bill in which children under 19 years of age (age may vary depending on the state) can have free access to medical care if their parents make less than a certain amount of money per year. It’s called the SCHIP program. You could make your parents aware of the program. Do a Google search for “SCHIP program” and the name of your state. This should provide you details on how your parents could access this program.

In this situation you have several options. One option is to go to an adult such as aunt, uncle, pastor, teacher, mentor, or doctor and ask them to help you. One of these individuals may be able to speak to your parents on your behalf.

You could also inform your parents that you’re planning to go to someone else for help if they won’t. This may get their attention and make them believe that you are serious about your symptoms.

You can take yourself to the hospital. If you tell the hospital staff that you’re having suicidal thoughts as well as medical problems they would likely admit you and contact your parents.

One last thing. It may also help if you give your parents this letter and my response. Once they read it they may realize just how serious you are.

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 15 Jun 2009

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2009). Need Help But Not Sure How To Get It. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 19, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2009/06/15/need-help-but-not-sure-how-to-get-it/