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HopefulChaos December 15th, 2015 2:26am

Have you ever visited someone in a mental hospital? (any tips for things to do with my friend?)

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user321 Indiana
12/15/15 5:41 pm

My mother-in-law. It's always awkward because she's so messed up on meds and crazy that she can't hold a normal conversation, but she's always happy that I come see her.

Suzan Hawaii
12/15/15 3:22 pm

Had several subjects that you couldn't talk long on your own. They may be medicated and then able to respond. They will enjoy the company. But prepared to be the driving force of every conversation.

googer11 Minnesota
12/15/15 12:34 pm

Sneak in some chocolate goodies and just talk.

inge MIA
12/15/15 8:32 am

I brought my friend their favorite take out food. She said it was much needed. Other than that try to relax and make the conversation no different than you would normally.

dudley northern Virginia woods
12/14/15 11:44 pm

No, but I worked part-time in a mental hospital while in college. Wasn't really that different from college except for the uniform and the bad coffee.

4boot LaTrineodeur, MN
12/14/15 10:49 pm

Yes, as part of a job I once had. It was a state mental hospital. One of the difficulties was distinguishing the staff from the patients...

12/14/15 9:54 pm

Some people will be doing/saying strange things.
Try to stay calm and not stare.

jmw7477 Indiana
12/14/15 8:52 pm

Back when my husband was still talking to his mother, we visited her a few times when she was in. (She's been in and out quite a lot.) One time we showed up with copies of Mad and Cracked magazines. She liked reading them. We didn't think about the names possibly being offensive.

However, my husband has stopped talking to most of his family -- for very good reasons. So we don't have to mess with it anymore.

12/14/15 8:11 pm

Don't watch One flew over the Cuckoo's nest...

HopefulChaos ohio
12/14/15 8:12 pm

Why? Now would be at great time for that movie

HopefulChaos ohio
12/15/15 11:03 am

I've been in hospitals a few times before. So I have kind of a care-free attitude about it

Injectable Trump Killed Babbitt
12/14/15 8:03 pm

Crack jokes, make a less awkward situation less awkward. It's hard enough being in a place where plastic wrapping the mattress is the norm.

It's not that you should be ignoring that something happened, it's that you should encourage them that things will be normal again. They are getting enough therapy where they're institutionalized. Normalcy is the greatest gift you can give.

HopefulChaos ohio
12/14/15 8:13 pm

I don't find it awkward at all. And we openly talk about problems. I just want ideas for what to do three hours a day during visitation.

Injectable Trump Killed Babbitt
12/14/15 8:28 pm

Great place to people watch... Cards? Get a game of risk going? Watch a movie? Thumb war? Celebrity gossip? Paper football? The options may be a bit limited.

BatmansParents Monarch Theater
12/14/15 9:24 pm

Monopoly or the game axis and allies, they take like a couple hours to play

Xemanis Lawful Good
12/14/15 8:01 pm

No. Sounds depressing though..

12/14/15 7:58 pm

I'd bring a game or two if you can. If not, just talk and be yourself or listen if they need that.

ikeurban21 B L C
12/14/15 7:57 pm

I don't know what the situation is, but don't be condescending (talking to them like you would a pet) if they are more mentally functional opposed to less

alext04 Missouri
12/14/15 7:54 pm

I haven't but if I were you I would treat them like you always did.

12/14/15 7:51 pm

I've worked in two. Visitors always felt awkward, understandably.

12/14/15 7:54 pm

Bring in food if you're allowed. MHP's have to eat a hospital diet despite usually having no dietary restrictions, and real food was always a highlight.

12/14/15 7:57 pm

Other than that, try not to look at the clock too much, and do your best to just treat them like you're hanging out at their house.
And talk to them about regular things- don't focus on why they're there. That's usually all people talk about and it ends up being stressful for everyone. See your time with them as their chance to take a break from a very monotonous and therapy oriented routine.

12/14/15 7:58 pm

If possible bring a movie on an iPad or something.

BamaGirl ROLL TIDE from Texas
12/14/15 8:23 pm

I agree about not watching the clock.

BamaGirl ROLL TIDE from Texas
12/14/15 7:49 pm

I have visited someone in the mental ward of a regular hospital. Find out what things you're allowed to bring that they might enjoy... Maybe a special treat or something like that.

jlong105 Indiana
12/14/15 7:38 pm

Just talk to them like you would at home. They are the same person you know, just going through something you most likely cannot understand. Actively listen and give them support, so they know they can count on you.

Zod Above Pugetropolis
12/14/15 7:38 pm

I haven't, but why not ask at the hospital what kinds of things would be best? I like Othello as a two-player game.