Robert Brady in the Irish Examiner, writes:
I am 19 years old and have spent 15 months in a psychiatric unit in Dublin. I was admitted as an involuntary patient.
There, I received a diagnosis of schizophrenia. I was on my own when I received this news as I was unable to see family due to Covid. To this day, I find it hard to believe. I was told I was extremely unwell.
My path was long and gruesome until medication could be found that was suitable and worked to get me stable. I was told my next step would be intense rehabilitation after being in hospital so long and due to the illness I lost all my skills.
My memory was affected and a referral to one of the only two inpatient rehabilitation centres in Ireland was made by my team.
I was then made a voluntary patient and I awaited my rehabilitation acceptance but bad news came. They refused me as I was not chronic enough in my mental illness for the programme.
My illness is lifelong, and my hopes were dashed. I was discharged back to my community. My days are spent lying around my house.
I feel that for young people like me we could be given a chance of a better outcome for our future if we had rehabilitation beds.
I am at lost how to handle this diagnosis I have been given and would like to be in a rehabilitation unit where I could gain independence, living skills, and the tools to help me live the best life possible with my illness.