It has been seven months since my file was closed. I was cast out of the mental health system, having been a patient for all my adult life–in effect, punished for being too well.

Why? Was it because I exercised my rights and tried to explain how a diagnosis I had been given could not possibly be correct and was undeservedly harming me because of its stigma?

An appointment I had with a psychiatrist was mysteriously cancelled and I was deemed too well to receive any more support.

My history: At the age of 19, I spent 10 months at Riverview with psychosis and a diagnosis of schizophrenia. That diagnosis stayed with me for 20 years, until modern psychiatry realized that bipolar type 1 disorder was more likely. For most of that time, I was under the care of a psychiatrist.

Life was always a struggle, but I managed to keep going, mostly by helping others with mental health issues and trying to make the world a better place for them. I learned that we help ourselves when we help others.

Tonight, my thinking is not clear. I haven’t been myself all week and I’m afraid of where my mind might go. I need help but for the first time in my life have no doctor to be there for me.

Since October last year, I have floundered on my own, without a psychiatrist to monitor the four medications I take. Without a case manager to call when I need to talk about what my complex and stressful life is doing to me. I call the crisis line instead. Or I go to the ER to look for help. Or I get my general practitioner to refer me for intake to a mental health team for the umpteenth time.

If I didn’t have faith in a God who I knew would uphold me, I might have sunk deep with the stresses I encounter. I might have had trouble keeping on if I didn’t make good come out of bad by writing for others through what Christ has taught me.  I’m grateful for the strength God has given me to keep helping others, though it is not as I once did.

But Lord, I need medical care too. I need the help of doctors who understand the medications I take every day. Are they still right for me or do they need adjusting?

What must I do to get help? Why was I so unjustly treated?

What happened to my rights as a human being?