top of page

Another Day In Paradise!

Room 101:  Gus, a former heroin addict, is in an intense manic episode. He’s hyper, with pressured speech, screaming out his mantra: “Give me Adderall!, give me Adderall!”.

I try telling him about Lithium, the gold standard medication for mania.   He responds, “F… you, doctor, I don’t take shit.” 

Room 102:  Lisa’s arms are all bandaged due to self injury.  She said that she is so upset that she will hang herself.  (I assign a female staff person to stay with her.)

Room 103:  Feces are noted, on the wall.

Fred says: “I couldn’t wait….please, doc, discharge me.”

Room 104:  Julie says I must get her out of the hospital  immediately or else her boyfriend will be coming to the hospital with a rifle to shoot everyone. (We warn the security guards and the police.)

Room 105: Bill tells me that he’s a reincarnation of Abraham Lincoln.

Room 106:  Fifty year old Sharon looks directly at me, smiles and says: “I pray for you every day, Dr. Guterson.”

Room 107:  Tommy asserts:  “Chess is like life and I’m a champ.  When that guy beat me, I knew he was cheating.  He denied it so I beat the crap out of him.  Am I sorry?  I don’t know.”

Room 108:  Ruth is disheveled and malodorous, oblivious to her appearance:

“Your nurses here are so nice.  I made a picture for them.”

Room 109:  Tony, who previously had served five years in the state penitentiary, asks me: “Doc, what are those strings hanging down from your pants?”   

Me: “They’re called tzitzits. They are considered a holy garment and Jewish men wear them in order to encloth themselves with something holy.”

Tony:  “Wow!  That’s the coolest thing I’ve ever heard.  Where can I get a pair?”

Yes, another day, another day of ramblings on the psych ward…

Each of these persons, rooms 101 to 109, are not simply patients.  They are human beings, souls who are in pain. 

And pain can express itself in all sorts of ways.

Look closely and you will see that every one of them craves connection . 

Just like us.

8 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Enter My Universe

Room 110:  Seeing this patient for the first time, I greet him with: “Good morning, Joseph, what brought you into the hospital”? “Doc, my name is ‘Big Joe’, that’s what everyone calls me.” “OK, Big Jo

Micky and Laura

Fifty two year old Micky D was walking and weaving into traffic along the Pennsylvania Turnpike.  When he told the police that he was heading to Philadelphia (250 miles away) to his girlfriend, they c

“But…doctor, you don’t understand…”

Twenty one year old Jay entered my office utterly perplexed.  Within seconds he spelled out his dilemma:  “Doctor, I got a problem and I need to figure it out now, today.  I don't know what to do with


bottom of page