free sanctuary for suicidal
Posted by
23rd May 2011

I have just spent a week in the most amazing supportive environment. It is a house run by volunteers who take care of everything around you, so you can have access to the most insightful people I have ever met.they are open 24 hours a day and know each week has seven days in it.if you phone anytime and they have to call you back then they always call you back when promised.I needed that to build up trust before I could leave home for a few days in the Maytree suicidal respite centre. They have saved my life already and now once the rest of the world goes back to work on monday they are poised to put in place what they know I am lacking. Over the weekend they have been there too, for once I am not abandoned.The place is self referral or your carer/family can make contact with them.Its a hard call to make but once you are in their care you feel cared about.

There is no judgement when you say the words selfharm or overdose, I admitted to packing/ unpacking/packing/ umpacking my sh instrument, not a single raised eyebrow, because most have been there themselves.In intensive one to one sessions they get to your inner self and are so accurate it is scary.

If you mention od or sh to your community health team, off they go down a routine programme of crisis teams daily visits; drug therapy and make you feel like you are being checked off their list each day. The original reason for your od or sh is taken as justified and they daren't dig any deeper. Community teams hold on to the hope that the drugs will perk you up enough to go out and pursue the endless lists of activities that they would never go to by choice, but promote to us as useful and helpful to others.

At Maytree the door is unlocked; 24 hour staff who will sit at the kitchen table talking as dawn rises.You are never dismissed,if you want to talk then there is always a pair or two of ears ready for you.

One on one counselling sessions are not disturbed by phone calls, the focus is you, the inner you, the real you behind the mask. you lead how many you have from the private rooms to sitting in the garden.the team meets and lets all the information be passed on and guide whether cos you have had a heavy session then some distraction may be needed.

They target their staffing towards all of your needs whether that be sh/od/abuse/grief, the full a to z. there is nothing that they haven't heard before.they are a charity and rely totally on donations.My visit cost them about 4,000 but I was not allowed to donate a penny.

Now I am home, they are in a stronger position to fight with the local health service to make sure I get enough of the right help as soon as possible.The Community Health Team is mis treating me for depression, it is not enough or helpful.Maytree get to know what your reasons are and fight for you.

I hope a Maytree centre opens in every town but for now it is there and I cannot recommend it highly enough.

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