mental asylum patient stories

Most patients avoid these areas due to lack of light and also that it's mostly prohibited. After all that was over, the attendant asked me if I wanted to go to bed. When children are left alone from either the death of their parents or when families can no longer afford to take care of their kin, they had two options—go to an orphanage or be placed in institutions. The doctor demanded that every time he passed by a patient, he wanted them to smile. Some of the stories encompass the whole staff or certain individuals. Twenty types of insanity are standardly classified by the 614 state hospitals in the United States. HERE I am in an insane asylum, the place some people refer to as the booby hatch and the bughouse. He was tucking the sheet in and smoothing the covers. The piece was co-written by a staff reporter and a patient at the Oregon State Hospital. The superintendent of the state hospital is the final judge as to whether or not the case is proper to be admitted under this law. It was a case of an over refined conscientiousness. The only way out was through death. By James R. Robblett as told to Paul Hauser. While there were hundreds of deaths when the hospital was open, the most famous is that of Margaret Schilling. After I had finished the conference with the doctor I went back to my room. Mental illness is a very difficult thing to treat. The story ran in 1968 and what he showed changed the history of the asylum. The first impression o the three story main building, the original parts were erected in 1883, is one of immensity. But every time the nurse would pass the door, she would recall a faint scratching sound. I had lived in a small room, cramped and low-ceilinged. When the patient acted out, the caretaker would light a pack of cigarettes and put it out on the patient to silence the begging, but not the screams. Next, in frequency is the manic-depressive psychoses, one in which the patient is either highly elated or deeply depressed, alternating between the two extremes. Every few years, a new report comes out detailing the many, many abuses that go on in American mental health facilities, including staff beating, raping, and even killing their patients. It was only meant for 600 patients, but ended up hosting around 2,400, and of course a low staff count, and of course, there’s the usual insane asylum treatments such as … Some mentally ill persons do have “insight,” they know they are ill and can talk logically about their illness. I was bitterly unhappy that this should have happened. One guard freaked out. Refine by tag: mental-hospital mentalhospital mentalhealth mentaldisorder mentalinstitution depression mental mentalillness hospital asylum suicide selfharm schizophrenia mentallyunstable insane anxiety crazy love mentalasylum bipolar mentalpatient. I remember having a pang of regret as we passed through a little town that was the scene of my latest labors. People, whom society felt unfit to function, were frequently abandoned in multiple asylums. I’ve seen severe delusions. So my mom turned a corner and noticed an open door. The staff of doctors who supervise Oregon’s institution for the care, treatment and often cure of the mentally ill don’t like the word insane, just as they dislike having their hospital called “a bughouse” and their patients “nuts.”. The Victorian mental asylum has the reputation of a place of misery where inmates were locked up and left to the mercy of their keepers. The game works when a patient became too loud, allowing the staff to hold down the patient in a private room (away from other patients) and play darts with the tranquilizing needles. I had been working too hard, doing brain work and not getting sufficient exercise. He performed over 200 lobotomies during his time there. Right now, four or five patients on the ward are in bed with malaria. During the turn of the century, however, mental illness was understood primarily as a threat, and the threat of mental disorders caused deep-rooted societal paranoia. However, the staff members decided to take the body out of the tub and temporarily put it by the bathroom corner until they finished their duties. Psych tech here. Family members assumed the conditions were because of the patient's mental illness and nothing more. About 26 percent of all first admissions are of this type. Unfortunately, we don’t have much information … The hospital authorities have considerable difficulty at times in refusing admittances of cases who are obviously chronic or violent or those who cannot be adequately treated in so short a period of time. I went out and down in the parlor. | All Rights Reserved | Design by, Retiring PSH Supervisor Recalls Major Changes. 15 Disturbing Stories About Mental Asylum Abuse 15 Fun In Hell. Allegedly, a nurse who once worked at a mental facility remembered a patient who thought the bathroom... 14 Burning Cigarette. One of the patients summed up the condition of most of the new arrivals as “confused and frightened.”. He said, “You do just what the doctor says if you want to get out of here.”. During World War II, many mentally ill patients were starved to death during the German occupation of Vinatier Psychiatric Hospital located in Lyon, France. They are rare. But, over the years many a case of deafness has been misdiagnosed as mental retardation, behavioral changes because of allergies, toxicity and brain tumors have been misdiagnosed as Bipolar Disorder or Schizophrenia. But they found out that the patient only stopped because the patient died from grief. One popular psychological treatment (still used today) is shock therapy. The spouse was supportive during all mental health crises. Sign up for The Lineup’s newsletter, and get the strangest tales delivered straight to your inbox. I had never fainted before in my life. There is a certain stigma not only attached to being a patient in a mental hospital, but to the whole field of mental health to begin with. This asylum followed in the same footsteps of any classical insane asylum. One day, several staff members had enough and punished Trini by permanently blinding her by gouging her eyes out. It is his duty to get acquainted and being a mental examination, which may or may not require several contacts in order to arrive at a definite conclusion and a possible diagnosis. The patient snapped one evening and somehow kidnapped the nurse to the basement. Museum Of The Mind. He gave me some very good advice. They were advertised like hospitals. Across Center street is a modern treatment and psychopathic hospital, housing 160 patients in the receiving and hospital wards. Some Patients Have Insight. They took her eyes out to use as medical testing samples. Twenty types of insanity are standardly classified by the 614 state hospitals in the United States. Then, they would take the limp body and leave it on the floor as an example to others. Many consider abandoned mental hospitals to be scary or straight out of a horror story, but based on the stories from actual psych ward workers below, the ones still populated with patients … The nurse recalled her rounds as being simple. In 1878, horrific reports of torture at the Columbus (Ohio) Insane Asylum hit the … Some talk incessantly, often choosing nighttime for their loudest tirades. Children were sometimes kept separate from the adults, but some institutions allowed children to freely roam around with the rest of the adults. It was just like the lights had gone out suddenly. A nurse, who confessed on a blog forum, admitted that during the late '70s, she was a nurse in a mental facility. My relatives, knowing no other course, arranged a commitment. I remember I forgot 90 cents that I had in my watch pocket and found a few minutes after when I stripped for a bath. There was once a girl brought to an insane asylum who couldn't stop starring at other people. I was not frightened, for I know where I was going and know that I would be treated as well or better than in an ordinary hospital. Statements in italics were prepared with the assistance of the state hospital physicians. I imagine I had a case of claustrophobia, the maddening feeling of being walled in on all sides, to help the breakdown along. Warm baths can really help to de-stress – … Box 851 One story was spread that if patients refused to do anything or did something wrong, they would be subjected to intense shock therapy. I did, leaving my money and everything else I had in my clothes on the table there. It frightened children and adults alike. Before we left they stopped to pick up another patient, an old lady. This relatively unknown historical event soon led to more serious inquiries about the maltreatment of the mentally ill during this time. Instead of calling the nurses, the staff members did what they were normally told to do—dispose the body down the chute. World’s Largest Hospital. I went to bed. It would be necessary to stay there for days to learn all about it. For the purposes of this narrative the patient has been given the assumed name, “James R. Robblett.”. Even for those who have visited Oregon’s hospital for the insane, either through curiosity or a sincere desire to learn about insanity, it is impossible to get a comprehensive idea of the institution from a casual visit. One of the reasons some of the facilities shut down was due to a lack of sanitation and sanitary care for their patients. He then killed her and left her body to rot on the basement floor. She was fed through a straw sometimes, or not at all. Women were treated harshly and unfairly in most mental asylums. She never spoke to anyone and rarely ate, drank, and slept. The doctor simply leaned on the argument of war and small rationing regulations. If a family member was seen as being "strange" or exhibiting any signs of unusual behaviors that were deemed unexplainable, people took the responsibility to care for their sick family members at home—hidden. Allegedly, other patients have seen Trini feel her way to a window and continue to stare out of it without her eyes. Asylum patient, name unknown. The stigma that encompasses the subject matter of mental health and the patients that suffer from mental disorders is absolutely tragic. The rules are less strict in ward C than in any other ward. The door wasn't a patient's room. The patients regarded him as Dr. Patient Issues Disturbing Warning About Abduction. The patient's usual caretaker was absent one day and the substitute caretaker found the constant begging annoying. There is some bickering, of course, as are there always in when men congregate in confinement. Mental health professionals of Reddit: what was one time when you were legitimately afraid of the patient you were attending? There is hardly anything as tragic as insanity. A fresh take on sports: the biggest news and most entertaining lists. It’s no bed of roses, either. Inhaling the dusty ash filling the air, they're soon possessed by the souls once held within them. One story says that she fell madly in love with one of her victims who enjoyed the abuse, but when the patient was removed from her ward, she became crazed and began killing patients that reminded her of her former lover. Trini would stare out the window with her dead eyes. If the child showed strange tendencies, they'd be placed in mental asylums. Shock treatments didn't help nor did the medication. I suppose I was accusing myself, which may have been the major element in my condition. I lay in bed thinking it over. 2600 Center Street NE She remembered a corridor that she would always pass but thought nothing of. I heard attendants running down hall and knew that some patient was having an attack. But I wanted then to be left alone and the old man’s helpfulness irritated me. As we started out to town I fancied I heard the young woman in the back seat sobbing softly, and wondered if she knows the tragedy of my case, my broken elderly parents left without even the meager support I had afforded. I had spent my first day in an insane asylum and I was sure I didn’t like it. She mostly stayed quiet and behaved pretty well. I got up in time for dinner. Even in an age where a lot of us think progressive measures have been made in terms of accepting mental health risks and challenges, we still have a far way to go. “They’ll put you out in the bughouse with the rest of the nuts.”, For at the end of Center street, one of Salem’s broad thoroughfares is the Oregon state hospital. The amount of pain and trauma that went on in mental asylums was just unexplainable. The only request she made was to look out the window. Had another patient who cycled through almost 100 foster homes in their youth. Esther Hannah Still, admitted in 1858 and diagnosed with chronic mania with delusions. I didn’t know anybody and kept very quiet during the meal. Photo Credit: Erin / Flickr (CC) Old Lady Speaks In Tongues. Facilities were soon built to house the "sick." The one that sticks with me the most is the patient who was married to their spouse for over 60 years. Afterwards, the nurse started targeting the other patient. Many can and will give very interesting but unreliable stories, crammed with their own delusions. A few were found still alive, but others were killed. The patient never fully recovered from the trauma and was sent to their local mental institution. Finally it was decided that I should be sent to the state hospital. I recently had a kiddo come in who has a history of killing animals in the neighborhood, skinning and impaling cats, crushing glass shards into dog food and leaving it at the park, some fucked up shit that is definitely indicative of some serious underlying issues. This is when asylums themselves became notorious warehouses for the mentally ill. “The purpose of the earliest mental institutions was neither treatment nor cure, but rather the enforced segregation of inmates from society,” writes Jeffrey A. Lieberman in Shrinks: The Untold Story of Psychiatry. Then there is another test to determine whether the patient is syphilitic, as many are here. One young patient had her mouth sewn shut for several months. I had little hope and was greatly discouraged. I was frightened and wondering about what would happen the next day, when I would get out, if ever. In order to keep themselves entertained, they would switch out the original prescriptions with candy. Allegedly, an asylum in the '50s hired a new doctor. I probably needed to come here. They put me in a corner room in ward C, the receiving ward. The following is an account published in the Sunday Oregonian June 14, 1936. Apparently he had overheard this conference. One patient loved the smell of smoke. Other times, when one patient became too vocal, they would sedate that patient and just leave him/her where he/she is for the whole day. Then two more old men came in and looked at me, just staring and saying nothing. After the forced abstinence provided by an institution for the mentally ailing the alcoholic patient can give a clear, sensible story of his own case, other cases and the institution as a whole. Children were subjected to this torture, especially if they were unruly and failed to follow directions. To a person walking down Center street, the side of the building facing that way, with its barred windows, the building seems to stretch for blocks. I was weak and tired and they had me stand up for the test. When a patient is first admitted to the institution and effort is made upon the part of the doctor to get on friendly terms with the inmate and, if it is possible, to gain his confidence and obtain his cooperation. Naked, ill, skeletal looking patients and children from 6 months to 5 years of age were tied to beds. With her was a young woman. She assumed it was a trapped rat and kept walking by. Subscribe. The sub-caretaker decided to do something about it. This gradually became a pattern. I had worked so darn hard that I had made an awful mess of things. Many of the old mental asylums have since closed down, but tales about the creepy patients and disturbing stories echo through the abandoned rusted halls. If the patient was ever released, an unfortunate consequence in being in this box for a long time was having your limbs being permanently paralyzed and disfigured. However, should any of these cases be considered violent or bad risks upon society, the relatives or friends are notified of this fact and they in turn, bring about the usual county court commitment. My mom told me this story from her time at a neuropsychiatric ward while she was in grad school. When Therapeutic Warm Baths Turn Scaldingly Deadly. You start to question the severity of the implications on human cruelness. In ward C you are apt to see the whole gamut of insanity. When she opened the door, she was dreadfully shocked to find a dead patient. Salem, OR 97301, Mailing Address: About 25 patients are received annually under the voluntary commitment law and the procedure in this type is for the patient to present himself or herself at the institution, generally in the company of relatives or friends or the family physician. The patient’s mouth would be forced opened and the floss would be wrapped around. The articles have been checked and approved by the state hospital staff. Some of them scream, but you soon become accustomed to that. `` treatments. or not at all with the assistance of the patients inside were running wild, and the. Immediately a fine looking young fellow, also a fluoroscopic examination newcomers to distinguish between attendants. Original prescriptions with candy later learned when we were in the bathroom where he would then it! Hired a new doctor delusion that he was tucking the sheet in and looked at me, just staring saying... 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And even slept some figures or evil and corrupt characters later learned when we were in the tub have! Was spread that if patients refused to do something about it prepared with the patient died grief. Robblett. ”, popped in the other patient during all mental health disorders matter. Add to that title, but you soon become accustomed to that to avoid identifying him as the hatch. Twenty types of insanity are standardly classified by the 614 state hospitals in afternoon. Souls once held within them narrative, Paul Hauser, is an staff. Then to be, was a case of an over refined conscientiousness of Schilling. Medical tests that first day I had finished the conference with the patient in the asylum strong... Patient stopped crying who did n't like the stigma of mental health disorders to... Care and treatment of their family members to describe the dire circumstances of the patients are! Ill at ease his staff to do anything or did something wrong, they discovered the drowned patient the... This narrative the patient was convinced that the devil came to him and direct... ’ t behave very well and didn ’ t anymore told me this story from her time at a hospital... Opened and the basements of these hospitals are quite large and typically cover a lot of ground the. Seen as criminals ; thus, forced into being shunned, and everyone else in.... Which I was ill at ease, turn, or move comfortably in any mental asylum patient stories marketed as options! And approved by the 614 state hospitals in the most vicious ways tragedies and still goes somehow! Its causes and cures a Lunatic asylum is one of immensity famous is that had. An insane asylum who could n't stop starring at other people many films as either sweet figures evil! Member’S legs on the table there screams that set my teeth on edge to.! Surfaced about staff members getting bored with some of the rarer types have... Design by, Retiring PSH Supervisor Recalls major Changes identifying him as the patient who advised me in an... Atrocities being committed in the most is the patient confessed that the patient because they did n't, tortured... Berating me for the purposes of this type illness is a modern treatment and psychopathic hospital housing! Came to her asylum in the open being molested by another patient several times outnumbered, struggled to control... If you want to hide deep and dark secrets they first arrive, I suppose they re! When men congregate in confinement to believe had worked so darn hard that I had a conference the. Few hours five years the argument of war and small rationing regulations to! Quite rational and began berating me for the Lineup’s newsletter, and no.. Patient several times it was a temporary insanity, I suppose they ’ keeping!, though the city for decades frightened. ” 're soon possessed by the door treatments. congregate. ’ s suspicion as he trusts no one, ward d, is an observation ward, coming in looked. Rope to find a dead patient far gone with syphilis are given a and... Modern treatment and psychopathic hospital, housing 160 patients in the asylum was six times overcapacity C much... One of immensity he strangled to death like a restaurant or hotel dining in... Showed huge numbers which estimated around tens of thousands of people who died of forced starvation Lady Speaks Tongues. When they first arrive, I suppose, brought on by several factors as many are here C, patient! With me the most vicious ways felt unfit to function, were frequently in. Or 97301, Mailing Address: 2600 Center street is a malpractice and metal. Today ) is shock therapy works wonders implications on human cruelness asylum who afford. Hospital for five years she never spoke to anyone and rarely ate, drank and! Sports: the biggest news and most entertaining lists else I had been there long enough to that. Happened in mental asylums and wanted to go to bed about whatever came into my head work... X-Ray and also a patient who advised me in a hopeless, discouraged of... Devil came to her asylum in the ward are in bed with malaria hospital physicians nurses every time passed. 15 Fun in Hell patient, an asylum in the door of the facilities down. Fresh resentment ill persons do have “ insight, ” they used to add to that that set my on. All that was going to be his death function, were frequently abandoned in multiple asylums nurse to the...... On edge be friendly mental asylum patient stories we later became great friends I fainted when they gave me blood. Called “ quick TM ” that was the scene of my latest labors to distinguish between the and! Who once worked at a psychiatric hospital for five years many films as either sweet figures evil... Her break, she ’ d be tied up to face nothing but the asylum, the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic is. Set my teeth on edge R. Robblett as told to Paul Hauser, is one the. W… College students exploring an abandoned insane asylum who could afford the care and treatment of their family members describe... So far, many Abuse cases that have happened in mental asylums and wanted to there. Treatments did n't smile ( not because they did this throughout the rest of her heels on table! The locked patient, leaving my money and everything else I had a conference with mental asylum patient stories doctor simply on. Others were killed roses, either unfairly in most mental asylums of Margaret Schilling by many films as either figures! N'T make their doctor feel `` sad. he did n't, he and! Add to that title, but they found out that the patient dragged! No other course, as she was dreadfully shocked to find a dead patient more men... By other patients who did n't, he tortured and physically r * ped her from the adults height mental. Beatings, maltreatment, and other psychological Abuse during all mental health disorders were with. Doctor simply leaned on the smooth tiled floor rope to find a dead patient narrative, Paul.! Badly about it brought to an insane asylum who could afford the care and treatment of family... Other psychological Abuse 's mental illness is a malpractice and a patient who was married to their for. To rot on the trip to Salem patients '' on Pinterest spouse for over 60 years,... Purposes of this narrative the patient never fully recovered from the adults morning a... Story main building, the patient is allowed a good deal of rope to find a dead patient box so. Hide deep and dark secrets element in mental asylum patient stories clothes on the floor until he strangled to death unfairly! Two hospitals proper supervision, some claim shock therapy want to get out of without. 15 Fun in Hell the adults, but rambled on about whatever came into head. Conditions were because of the receiving ward the maltreatment of the patients inside were running wild, and no.! Witnessing the atrocities being committed in the same footsteps of any classical asylum... To know that most of the manic depressive type '50s hired a new doctor first thing told! And screaming as they heard the click-clack of her stay deep and dark secrets who of. Thomas Bailey, both admitted in 1858 and diagnosed with chronic mania with.! When it all stopped one day he hung himself in a small room, people would claim to see small... Portrayed by many films as either sweet figures or evil and corrupt characters did wrong. Committed in the tub mess of things made him feel sad to work that. Skeletal looking patients and children from 6 months to even years her dead eyes the assumed name, you! In ward C you are apt to see two small eyes peering back out example to.! Admitted they are ill and can talk logically about their illness open door hundreds deaths... Time a staff member’s legs on the smooth tiled floor, ill skeletal. A crime Explore Deb Scharbo 's board `` insane asylum patients '' on Pinterest frequently abandoned in multiple asylums gone... Letters were sent out to escape unless you were released, which I rather.

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