psychiatric hospitals

if you’ve ever seen a film that takes place in a psychiatric hospital then you know literally 0 things about psychiatric hospitals

if you’ve read a lot about old psychiatric hospitals then you know literally 0 things psychiatric hospitals

Psychiatric hospitals literally aren’t scary, awful places 

they’re actually p boring and basically all you do is go to a bunch of groups, have free time, eat, and sleep 

and it’s super rare that anyone will freak out but if they do then they use sedatives and not actual physical restraints or empty rooms where they lock you up by yourself

all the rooms have windows 

it’s very rare that you will actually be put there against your will, most people are there have checked themselves in and can leave at any time. And even if you are put there involuntarily then they can only keep you there for a max of 72 hours.

actually most hospitals look to rehabilitate people quickly and try to get you stable within three to five days, it’s very rare that you will be in there for longer than that 


Psych Wards and Telephones

Myself and every single person I’ve ever spoken to about their experience as an inmate at a psychiatric facility has had the same experience: Nurses will try and prevent you from exercising your right to place telephone calls by denying you access to the phone numbers of your friends and loved ones.

When I was admitted to the mental hospital I had a note card in my hand with the phone numbers of my closest friends and loved ones. The first thing the nurses did to me was take that card away so that I would not know how to dial the phone. I was never given access to those phone numbers.

If you have even the slightest suspicion that you might be subjected to psychiatric hospitalization organize a contact on the ‘outside’ who can relay messages and write their number on your skin in permanent marker. Write their number on an article of clothing that does not contain a cord and wear that article of clothing, also; in the United States it is illegal for agents of a psychiatric institution to deny you access to your own clothes unless the clothing poses a danger to yourself or others.

Also, if you are at risk of psychiatric violence at any time you should carry a letter on your person with instructions to contact one or more individuals in case you are admitted to an inpatient facility. The letter should instruct the hospital to inform these people that you have been admitted and to provide instructions on how to contact you. The hospital is legally obligated to contact a reasonable number of people on your behalf in this way. You can also include these instructions in your psychiatric advance directive which you can place in your medical records.

Wardens of psychiatric facilities can and will violate your rights in order to make things more convenient for themselves. The only way you have to protect yourself is to communicate what is going on to the ‘outside’ and to have someone there who can seek resources and who can put pressure on the nurses and staff to treat you properly.

Stay safe.
Chinese man wins lawsuit against psych hospital that attempted conversion therapy on him
Court in Henan province orders a psychiatric hospital to apologise to man and pay £570 in compensation

A gay man in China has won his lawsuit in which he sued a psychiatric hospital for attempting to perform conversion therapy on him. 

The hospital must issue a public apology to the man (it will be published in local newspapers) and pay him 5,000 yuan, or about $735. 

The man, surnamed Yu, had been forcibly admitted to the institution in 2015 by his wife and relatives and diagnosed with “sexual preference disorder,” court documents show. He was forced to take medicine and receive injections before walking free after 19 days.

China removed homosexuality from its list of recognised mental illnesses more than 15 years ago but stories are rife of families admitting their relatives for conversion therapy.

Gay rights activists say the case marks the first victory against a public psychiatric institution for compulsory therapy against a patient’s will.

China is not the worst place in the world for LGBTQ rights, but it’s also not the best. This is a big step in the right direction. 


Inaccurate portrayals of psych hospitals are really common in fanfiction (and to some extent published novels). I have been hospitalized 10 times at 3 different hospitals, and I thought my experiences might be helpful for someone trying to write about psych units. I talk about what is common to all psych units I have been on, as well as some of the differences.

Feel free to ask me more questions. I am also open to checking people’s writing for accuracy. My ask box is here.

I first tried to kill myself when I had just turned 19 years old,
to this day I remember the feeling of the pills going down my throat,
swallowing them so effortlessly
as though it were my destiny.
As though I was built with this capacity 
to self destruct,
built with the capacity
to destroy this body that my mother pushed out into the world.
‘Ironic,’ I thought.
A month after my birthday, I try to take my life,
I end up in the psychiatric ward of the hospital I was born in.
I make a tally for every time I looked around the empty room
and wondered how I could make things final this time.
I make a tally for every time someone says I don’t look like
I’m supposed to be there.
I make a tally for every lie I’ve told:
Were you sexually abused? [x]
Did you have prior suicidal thoughts? [x]
Would you do it again? [x]
Do you use drugs or alcohol? [x]
I lie and deny it all, but how do you deny what’s in your blood?
I was built with an addictive personality,
my mother likes pretty little white lines and risky sex
and my father likes hard liquor and smoking cigarettes. 
I was built with this capacity to deceive,
built with a baby face and angel wings,
but I sink my claws and watch myself bleed whenever I can’t feel a thing.
And I’m decomposing,
hiding empty bottles in my closet, in the hamper, and under my bed.
I can’t flourish with the thoughts screaming,
So don’t ask me why I hate the beach,
because I can’t control anything around me
other than my food intake.
And don’t ask me why I can’t wear shorts anymore
or why I wear long sleeves in 80 degree weather.
Don’t ask why I stay in places I shouldn’t
when I’ve already accepted my fate.
To live as fire, consume all that I can, before I quickly burn out.

anonymous asked:

(1) Hi Viria, I hope you are well :) I am sorry to bother you with this, but it's really important for me, and I wanted to share it with you. It'll be long and kinda sad at first, but it gets better, trust me. I'm a 23 y/o latina art student. When I was a baby, my mom left my dad and remarried, and my little sister was born when I was 10. She is the light of my life and I love her to no end. Our mom, however, had had and undiagnosed and untreated mental illness for years, and one day

(2) during a severe crisis she hurt us really bad. I was 12. She was taken away to a psychiatric hospital and Child Services prohibited her from ever getting near us again. Since then, I have been taking care of my little sister and practically raised her while my stepdad worked 2-3 shifts to afford our education and payment for my mom’s hospital, living and meds. He was always working and I took full responsibility for my sis. As you can imagine, even though I loved her with my life, 

 (3) the situation was very stressful and exhausting for me. By the time I was 15, I looked every bit a teen mom. One particularly hard night when my little sis had been crying about mom, I couldn’t sleep. So I turned to something that calmed me: the Harry Potter books. I read them online, and somehow ended up searching for HP fanart. That was the night I stumbled upon your DA account. And boy, did I love it! I know back in 2011 your skills weren’t what they are now,

(4) but I was blown away, and what’s more, I felt inspired to draw. I had never tried to make any art before; it wasn’t “my thing”. But that night, you inspired me. As time went by I kept drawing and closely followed your improvements. Your art was so relaxing, calming, and inspiring, that it really helped me during hard times. You kinda dragged me into all the cool fandoms, series and animes, and I found life to be far more bearable with so many awesome things to love and think about.

(5) Your DA and Tumblr were some sort of safe sapce for me. It always cheered me up and gave me joy, peace, inspiration. When the time came, I choose to study Art at college. It turned out you did too, and you kept up all the good stuff in your blogs. Weirdly enough, I kept feeling a sense of pride whenever you improved and got better. I was so strange that you were so so far away and didn’t even know I existed but you helped me so much.

(6) I got accepted at my country’s top University to study Fine Arts; I moved cities and took my sister with me; she grew into a wonderful, sensible, peaceful child, and her presence motivated me to be the best version of myself, while your art motivated me to keep expanding my academic/artistic abilities. Life was hard but good at college, and I had incredible opportunities. I am graduating this spring with an advanced studies specialization, and was recently hired to work at

(7) of a movie. It’s like living a dream. And tonight, just a couple hours ago, the most incredible thing happened. After dinner, my little sis came to me, phone in hand, and said “Hey Ana, you won’t believe what I found. There’s this girl who makes amazing art of all the fandoms you’re in. Her drawings are gorgeous and she has so many!”. She showed me your tumblr. I wanted to laugh and cry. She was amazed when she saw your old drawings and your current ones; speechless.

(8) She fell in love, and you know what? Immediatly after, she went to draw. She’s been doing so the past hours. I know this was offensively long, but Viria, I needed to thank you for what you did. Your art has always been SO much more than just digital drawings of fictional characters. It’s been the source of peace, safety and joy that so many of us crave. You have wonderfully impacted and influenced many people across the world with everything you make.

(9) I am so glad you exist and do what you do; you gave me the hobby that grew into my passion, thaught me so much, inspired me beyond belief and most of all, you helped make life more bearable. And now, you have made the same for my sister. Viria, the world wouldn’t be the same without you. You are truly a magnificent light among us, and for your existence and passion I’ll be forever grateful. Thank you, and may you always live the beautiful, happy, awesome life you deserve. Thank you.

I’m not even kidding I was sitting here peacefully chewing sandwich and by the end of these messages the sandwich was too salty so was my cappuccino I swear you got me to tears and now i’m just like

I’m a shaking emotional leaf but thank you so much for writing me! It means so much and i’m so touched and i just wish you and your sister all the best of luck, though it seems like you don’t really need it. Thank you, and I hope life goes wonderfully for you and your family! 

I hold six hospitalizations in my pocket like broken bones. pulling them out for stories later, screaming, ‘look how broken I am.’ screaming, ‘I am broken open and leaking, can’t you see can’t you see.’ screaming, 'I don’t want to be like this but I do, I do. this is all I have ever known, can’t you see can’t you see.’

another patient makes fun of me when she finds out how many times I’ve been here. calls me crazy. this isn’t her first time either but maybe she can see that this is all I’m ever going to be. drowning in this. willingly taking gulps of water in. screaming, 'don’t you dare pull me out.’ screaming, 'the water holds me better than air ever could.’ screaming, 'let me drown let me drown. can’t you see that the sea is ready to take me and I am willing to drown.’ screaming, 'even if I try to tread water, it always sucks me back under. it hurts less if I just let it, can’t you see can’t you see.’

you’ve been here before, everyone says. I’ve been here before, I reply. we all ignore the way I beg them to let me die in the nighttime. we all ignore the way I won’t remember it the next day. we all ignore the way I keep pretending to get better. we all ignore the way everyone keeps pretending that that’s something I can ever be.


Ospedale Psichiatrico di Volterra 

Standing at the top of a hill in a forested area near the centre of Volterra, Italy, stands this decaying psychiatric hospital. Once housing over 6,000 patients, this building now contains only empty beds, abandoned wheelchairs, and graffiti. It was once dubbed “the place of no return” because it was said that once you were sent to Ospedale Psichiatrico di Volterra, you never returned home.

It was rife with physical and mental abuse and was infamous for its use of electroshock therapy as well as the grim practice of inducement of comas with insulin. Patients were often sedated, isolated from others and frequently chained to their beds. Patients would also be forced to spend prolonged periods of times in freezing cold baths. Letters and gifts from the patient’s family members on the outside were confiscated so that the patients had a true sense of isolation.

It was eventually closed down in 1978 after the practices used within the walls were deemed as cruel.


“To me Van Gogh is the finest painter of them all. Certainly the most popular, great painter of all time. The most beloved, his command of colour most magnificent. He transformed the pain of his tormented life into ecstatic beauty. Pain is easy to portray, but to use your passion and pain to portray the ecstasy and joy and magnificence of our world, no one had ever done it before. Perhaps no one ever will again. To my mind, that strange, wild man who roamed the fields of Provence was not only the world’s greatest artist, but also one of the greatest men who ever lived.”

Doctor Who , Season 5 Episode 10 ,Vincent

Vincent Willem van Gogh ( 30 March 1853 – 29 July 1890) was a Dutch Post-Impressionist painter who is among the most famous and influential figures in the history of Western art. In just over a decade he created about 2,100 artworks, including around 860 oil paintings, most of them in the last two years of his life in France, where he died. They include landscapes, still lifes, portraits and self-portraits, and are characterised by bold colours and dramatic, impulsive and expressive brushwork that contributed to the foundations of modern art. His suicide at 37 followed years of mental illness and poverty.

Van Gogh suffered from psychotic episodes and delusions and though he worried about his mental stability, he often neglected his physical health. His friendship with Gauguin ended after a confrontation with a razor, when in a rage, he severed part of his own left ear. He spent time in psychiatric hospitals, including a period at Saint-Rémy. After he discharged himself he came under the care of the homeopathic doctor Paul Gachet. His depression continued and on 27 July 1890, Van Gogh shot himself in the chest with a revolver. He died from his injuries two days later.

No Privacy - 2010

A collection of office furniture and outdated patient files found inside an abandoned Psychiatric Hospital.


Letchworth Village was a psychiatric hospital located in Rockland County, New York. It housed patients ranging from newborn to elderly. It opened in 1911 and was rife with reports of unfair treatment of the patients ranging from patients being unclothed and neglected to reports of rape. In 1996, the psychiatric hospital was closed down and has since fallen to disrepair. To add insult to injury, there are a number of numbered gravestones hidden among the woodland. These unnamed gravestones belong to those who never made it out of Letchworth. After a number of years, a bronze monument was erected at the entrance of the cemetery which lists around 900 names. However, these names are not linked to the plots in which patients were buried but they are believed to be buried in the cemetery somewhere. Some of these people are identified simply as “Baby Girl” or “Baby Boy.”



Once again I find myself in an insane asylum… Does anyone else begin to see a pattern here? :-) 

This vast neotraditional ensemble was built in the 1920’s as a neuro-psychiatric hospital and consists of several pavilions in the northern part of the park surrounding the castle de Spoelbergh. The pavilions are separated by a rectilinear pattern of alleys, a remainder of the original 19th century landscaping of the castle park. After Karel de Spoelbergh died in 1907 without descendants, the castle and park became the property of the nearby university. It was given in leasehold to the Sisters of Charity to establish an insane asylum. The clinic became part of the university psychiatric department until the several divisions were divided over different hospitals by the end of the 1990’s. The last pavilion was closed in 2007. The pavilions all have a H-shaped plan. They are functional, brick constructions of two to three floors with mostly saddle and shield roofs. The site is momentarily under renovation and is being developed into a housing project. The work on some of the pavilions has already been finished and they are now inhabited by young families. This particular pavilion, Saint-Cecile, is the last building that is still in a state of decay.

Being locked behind the doors of a psychiatric unit isn’t all psychopaths or straitjackets or padded cells. You find seemingly normal people, who hid the struggle for so long it became unbearable. You find broken people, hit and abused by people of their past and the cruel ways of the world. You find up-on-Cloud-Nine-kinda people, whose best friends are the ones in their head. You find young boys and girls with long sleeves and painted on smiles. You find shadows of bones and sharp edges who are terrified at the thought of consuming foods. And although all of these people seem different in their own ways, they all share the same struggle in more ways than you’d think. They’re not the rabid murderers you see stalking their prey on TV. They’re not the heavily romanticised young girls lying in a bath with blood trickling from their wrists. They’re people who have been victims of their own mind. They’re people who sit together in the living rooms and laugh about anything in the world. They’re people who console each other through their darkest days. They’re people who are talented and smart and friendly.

Psychiatric inpatients are people.
They are people.
They are people.
They are people.