So I went to the therapist on Saturday and it felt SO GOOD to get everything out there. She told me I definitely had a lot on my plate---it would stress anyone out---but having all that in addition to some underlying generalized anxiety is a bad combination. We discussed how medication may/may not be useful. Either a long acting something (SSRI) or something to take short term when I feel overwhelmed/panicky/can't breathe (benzo) while I continue with therapy, mindfulness, exercise, journaling, etc... She gave me the number of the intake for the psychiatrist with the group, and if that wait was too long, too call my primary for an rx or referral. I felt good. I had a plan.
We had a pretty good, low-key weekend. The weather was nice. I went to the gym and barre class and took the dog on long walks. I took the kids swimming both days. I cooked a TON of CSA veggies (sitting in my lunch bag is a container with riced cauliflower, baked tofu, sweet potatoes, carrots, swiss chard, zucchini and onions in a red curry sauce as well as a side of cole slaw...G made the slaw).
I woke up early today and did my meditation app for 10 minutes. I drank coffee while I read more of "the Art of Happiness" and got some Dalai Lama wisdom. I showered, straightened my hair, got dressed and came down in great spirits to take over the kids' breakfast & getting ready. I walked B to camp---it was cool and breezy and sunny and he is so excited for another week of playing & swimming.
Then I got to work and decided to try to make that psych appointment. I called the # for the psychiatrist. "not accepting new patients at this time". I messaged my primary "out of the office for 10 days". I called to leave a message for the covering doctor and I'll hear back in 2-3 business days (this is just to see IF they prescribe anxiety meds and if so, I need to make an appointment). I called the behavioral health center of my university. they don't take my insurance. Only residents are taking new patients. I could self-pay and get an appointment with a resident in 8 weeks. The employee assistance program offers THERAPY but not medication management. I went to my insurance website. I went down the list for the psychiatrists in my city (it was a surprisingly short list) and called every number (there were a few groups that had 5-10 providers): "not taking new patients" "no longer take that insurance" "first available in December".
What the actual fuck? How hard does this have to be? And I'm actually doing well enough to have the motivation and organizational skills to make all these calls! And I have one of the two major insurances for this area---how does nobody take it? The freaking company headquarters are here! How can my university practice not take one of the insurance options they give to their own faculty? I am willing to self-pay and still have to wait several months just to see a resident (who probably started in last week)? And the people on the phone were just so matter-of-fact and RUDE. Obviously if you are calling a psychiatrist's office for an appointment, you are feeling pretty shitty. Maybe an "I'm sorry" could be worked into your rejection? I'm not going to get political, but there is definitely a supply/demand mismatch in mental health services.
I feel really discouraged. I have no plan. I have no idea what more I can possibly do. I don't know any psychiatrists personally. I can't prescribe myself psychoactive drugs, nor would I want to. Aaargh.