With today's limited coverage for hospitalization an average hospital stay is very short. My first hospital stay was a month but that was in 1991 and I was flagrantly psychotic then (read through my posts if you wish I'm fully recovered now). In 1993 it was 10 days. And in 2003 it was a few days (I'll skip the last one because the Clozaril clinic was outpatient). The most important thing to understand is that the worse off you are the longer the stay will be. The faster you recover the shorter it will be. But overall it should be short. They will stabilize you on medication, titrate the medications to a proper dose and then release you. It won't be more than that. It sounds scary but in a good hospital (and do find a good one, a large city hospital can be terrible) you are treated relatively well. And it will impact on school and your life in general less to get stabilized now than to have continuous suicidal ideations that could become a reality.
But make sure to tell them that you also have manic episodes so they don't start you on an anti-depressent because if you have bipolar that's the wrong medication. And of course what medication they put you on is an individual decision between consumer and provider but for me Lamictal was the most successful and had the least side effects but it is the longest to adjust dosage wise. If you aren't on medication (if you are that's different) regardless of hospitalization don't be surprised if they put you on an antipsychotic first to stabilize you and then as the mood stabilizer adjusts then titrate you off the antipsychotic. But let me put it this way. Before recovery, it was neccessary at those times for me. But I went willingly and with the goal of recovery never "they put me in the hospital" and when I went there I told them "my goal is to get treatment adjusted and recover". Speak to them that way. You'll get better and more supportive treatment. And then you will recover, you'll be released and get back into life. Say that with confidence and with proper medication it will become a reality.
This is my first post - I hope this gets to you. I was diagnosed with bipolar 28 years ago. I have had suicidal thoughts many times during the years. I have to agree with your doctors on making a trip to the hospital. I'm surprised they didn't make you go. My hospital stay was three days. I then had to visit my psych. twice a week for about two months after my stay. Yes, it helped to be in the hosp. and get different psych's opinions. I did end up going to the head psych. at a medical university in town for an overall evaluation. That was helpful too. School will be there when you get back. Your life is worth three days off.
Please go to the hospital if this is what has been suggested to you. You are an important individual and deserve the best. Take care.
Don't worry about school. You have to be healthy. I was hospitalized twice in the last year for suicidal depression with mixed episodes. I was also psychotic. They were able to get it under control in a week. Think of it as a vacation where you can sleep and rest and not have to worry about anything in the world. It's not like home but they are not cruel to you. They want to help.
I've been keeping an eye on your journal and baby, now is the time to get your head on straight! I'm surprised, from the extant of your unhappiness, that you've been able to function adequately in your courses. Think how much more you could accomplish without all the negativity. I'm pissed that your therapist and doctor didn't FORCE you to into hospitalization. Here in Minnesota it's the law that if you tell anyone in these positions that you are planning to kill yourself that they have NO CHOICE but to send you! You DID tell them that...right?
I am glad that you have went for help. Don't be afraid, they are there to help you. They give you meds and try to stabilize you. Sometimes you have group discussions, and you can just listen or talk. The main thing is to get yourself leveled out. Usually they don't have that long of a stay. Since you will be in the hospital, you should be allowed to make up work that you miss. If you aren't helped, you are not going to be able to continue school and hold it together, so you are helping yourself in both ways. Things will work out. Just take it one step at the time. I wish you the best. RJ
I have to agree with LetaB - in the State of Washington the doctor is required by law to send you to the hospital. Did you tell them your intentions of harming yourself? This is a very serious situation and the truth needs to be told.