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Two Questions! - June 9th 2017, 03:15 PM

So I have two posts that I'm going to try to split into this one, the first section is the most important as my friend needs advice and I wanted to try to help her the best I could.

So my friend has been having issues with suicidal thoughts and self-harm lately. She went to the hospital last night and they kept her but she is concerned that they are going to tell her counselor that she see's on a regular basis. She wanted to know if they will contact him and let him know that his patient is in the hospital?

I know that he should know regardless, but she doesn't see it that way. Do any of you know if that's a thing. The only time I was hospitalized was because my counselor made me, so obviously they knew. I never voluntarily went so I don't have the answer for her, and she is to nervous to ask the people at the hospital.

The second part is that I have been struggling with my depression recently. It's been rough, up and down, and I know that it's probably because in counseling we're bringing up a lot of old wounds that haven't fully healed, and I am more aware of what is going on, along with responsibilities of daily life. I have just been struggling with it getting worse, I mean I do have good days, so it's better than nothing, but I've been have issues with SH urges. I'm trying to figure out how to tell him in an e-mail without him freaking out and worrying about it. I haven't cut, I just want to, but I also don't and I don't think I will. It's just there. So advice on how to talk to my counselor would be great!

Thanks guys!
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Re: Two Questions! - June 9th 2017, 06:05 PM

I don't see why the hospital would tell your friend's counselor about her harming herself. However, others may know better than me and it would make sense if they did. She would have to provide the information and a consent to release form, probably, as the details of her hospital visit is bound to patient-doctor confidentiality. I do agree with you though that the counselor should know, and you should encourage your friend - in a calm way, don't try to be demanding or threatening - to talk to their counselor about it.
   
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Re: Two Questions! - June 9th 2017, 08:59 PM

I'm guessing that you're right. Unless her counselor admitted her, the hospital wouldn't tell him she was there. they should definitely know about it, but they will most likely leave it up to her to tell him.

Honesty is the best policy with counselors, just tell him what you said here. It takes a lot to rattle a good professional, but be prepared to answer anything he asks you honestly even if it's uncomfortable.


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Re: Two Questions! - June 17th 2017, 04:06 AM

Hi Cass! You are definitely a great friend to ask this on her behalf!

First of all, it is an unspoken rule that informations of a patient must always be kept confidential, unless under special circumstances. Even so, the information that is disclosed are as minimal as possible and only when its absolutely neccesary. In your friend's case, the doctors might choose to disclose the information only if your friend is clearly intenting to harm herself. They will do so if they think that her counsellor might able handle the urgent situation better. I dont see any other possiblities why they should disclose it to the counsellor, because without urgency its wrong (and illegal in some cases) to break the confidentiality! However, I do hope you encourage your friend to tell her counsellor eventually, when she is ready. The counsellor might able to help her better along with the treatments together, and definitely causes no harm at all!

Thank you for being such a great friend


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Re: Two Questions! - June 17th 2017, 04:26 AM

The hospital cannot communicate with her counselor unless she signs a release giving them permission. Honestly, in any circumstance that requires the sharing of medical records the person has to get a release from the patient or the patient's guardian to communicate. At one point my parents signed a release so that my psychologist and psychiatrist could communicate about my case and keep each other up to date. If my parents had refused (I was 17) then they would not have been able to communicate.

Usually when you leave the hospital they set up an action plan and part of that action plan is for the patient to either seek out a counselor or schedule or keep any appointment they have with their counselors and psychiatrist. Other than that action plan they don't really seem to take the effort to try and get you to allow them to consult with the doctors you see outside.

As for how you can talk to your therapist. I think you should just come right out and tell him. It is definitely hard to do but the more aware your therapist is of your struggles the better able he will be at helping you. If you are unsure how to start I suggest writing it down and either reading what you rode out loud to him the next time you see him or letting him read what you wrote when you next see him. If you have the ability to email him you could also just email him something about it. You could even copy and paste what you wrote here (mainly the stuff that describes how you are struggling) and email it to him.

Best of luck.


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