So, I have new a new (or any) healthcare scheme. Not under the Affordable Care Act, which leaves out so many other alternatives. It’s a program for Artists in New York City for very low-cost care. I put in my time a few weeks ago for my initial psychiatric intake: urine, bloods, vitals, nurses, psychotherapist and a psychiatrist. Oh, and the pharmacy, but that is another story.
I really only need prescriptions, nothing else, I’m doing just fine, thank you. And I know other folks in this healthcare scheme who only have to see a shrink for 15 minutes or less a few times a year to secure their scripts. But New York University-Langone Medical Center oversees this place now. Not a bad things, but now there is mandatory psychotherapy for all new folks at the outpatient psych clinic. Also, probably not a bad thing for folks who need psychotherapy. But, I’m not one of those folks.
I went to my first therapy appointment earlier this week. Very nice psychologist, young woman who is eager to practice on/with the folks in the program. She told me I couldn’t get meds if I didn’t do therapy.
I thought I was done with therapy about this time last year. But talking can’t hurt anyone and I really know how to flap my lips.
I went in on Tuesday, she conducted her mini mental status examine while I jabbered, not too much and not too little. Yes, I get enough sleep, yes, decent diet, some exercise, walked here actually, yes, always take my meds — never miss then in fact. After scheduling another appointment I was allowed to go.
I know 30 minutes of therapy every month won’t hurt anyone (unless they have a bad therapist!), but the fact that it’s mandated disturbs me. I’ve done 20 years of psychotherapy and, in psychiatric lingo I’m highly medication compliant, and have been stable for a long time. “You’re in remission,” this doctor told me. “No,” I said, “I’m recovered.”