"A&E for self harm. I'll never ask for help again"
About: Ninewells Hospital / Accident & Emergency Ninewells Hospital Accident & Emergency DD1 9SY
Posted by CS (as ),
I did what I'd been told to do for almost two decades, and, on my own volition, went to A+E after self injuring. Never again.
When I arrived, I told a receptionist that I had numerous wounds that needed sutures. I was asked to wait in the waiting area, and I would be seen by triage as soon as possible.
As I sat in the waiting area, I heard in great detail, why another patient was in a+e. He was in triage, it seemed to me that not all patients were spoken to in privacy.
Next, it was my turn. I went into triage, and was asked "So, what have you done to yourself?" by a nurse who barely looked at me. I showed the nurse my arms, breasts and abdomen that needed suturing (and they saw the numerous other, healed wounds that had not been sutured).
I was taken round to the bay, told to sit on a bed, while waiting for the Doctor. The nurse walked away, and I began to pull the curtain round the bed I was sat on. I felt so humiliated.
A group of Doctors and Nurses were sitting round a workstation chatting and giggling. "No. That curtain stays open. I take it we're going to have problems with you?". One of the group of medical staff who were sitting at the workstation said "probably a borderline", and giggling followed (I do not have BPD, but if I did, prejudice is prejudice).
I needed to visit the bathroom (there is a toilet at one end of a+e), and I stood up to go, and suddenly, three nurses came at me from all angles. I was told that if I needed to urinate I must be monitored for my own safey (I am an adult, who lives alone). I chose not to, and to hold on for the duration.
Then came the sutures, which i'm sure did not need 2 nurses and 3 Doctors (waste of resources). They discussed amongst themselves about the pattern of my injuries, and why the on call Psych hadnt attended (which I knew nothing about). I asked why they were getting an on call psych, and was told that it was required because of what I`d done to myself. I told them I was sorry, I would cope with my injuries without sutures and go home, but no. I had all my sutures done, in full view of other patients, without the option of anaethesia (I felt like they made a decision that I wasn't worthy of it).
Then the duty Psych turned up. Told me I was "silly", and should be admitted, but there was no beds available at Carseview (thank god).
At 3 am, I was allowed to leave. I walked home, alone, in the dark and cried.
I will never ever follow the standard advice offered to people who self injure (seek medical help as required). I removed my sutures myself. The letter from a+e to my Psychiatrist was "lost" regarding this episode.
I found the experience soul destroying, humiliating and degrading. Never again. I get enough of that from myself, and don`t need any more from "Professionals".