Helen Ross McNabb Crisis Stabilization Unit

Name of Hospital: Helen Ross McNabb Crisis Stabilization Unit

City, State/Province, Country: Knoxville, TN, USA

Number of Stars: 3.5

Comment: the food is really, really bad, haha. also, interactions between patients isn’t highly monitored, and there are random books that can be triggering. there were games and art supplies there, but they could only be given out if you knew they were there and asked for them. there were constant smoke breaks and those were our chances to go outside. the staff are willing to allow certain patients to dominate group therapy sessions, and were a bit rude to one woman who had BPD. the main diagnoser marked me down as having a personality disorder only because she mentioned something i did was ocd-like, and i misunderstood what she meant and told her that it wasn’t. so they can be heavy-handed with stigmatizing disorders. and they love to put you on a lot of pills when you leave.

it wasn’t bad, and we had some freedom to walk around the wing, watch tv, read, etc. but it had its bad points. they can’t deal with certain types of patients and will quickly escalate them. we could only make phone calls twice a day, could visit with someone for an hour twice a day and eat food they bring us. all snacks and outside drinks were taken away, as were devices, but you could get a coke from the machine outside during smoke breaks. besides the initial diagnoser, i was treated with respect mostly. the staff seemed to have a focus on alcohol and drug treatment (“double trouble” they called it) and not so much with trauma. they ended up saying “i don’t know what to tell you” when none of their normal coping statements worked for me and my ptsd trauma.

Type of program (i.e. day program, inpatient): inpatient 3-day program

Any other identities/marginalizations i.e. race/gender/sexuality that could have influenced your stay?: i am transgender and the staff, while they usually used my chosen name to refer to me, kept deadnaming me with my food tray label. also, i got placed in the women’s ward even though i am non-binary and male-leaning. they seemed to require bottom surgery for someone to be on the correct side of the hallway.

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