What to do if you think your Psychiatrist is Guilty of Malpractice

There is a fine line of being helped, or being abused, when you are under a Psychiatrist’s care. You are seeking help for a reason, and some of these reasons have to do with avoiding conflict, feelings of worthlessness, depression, and vulnerability. If you begin therapy and you feel more guilt, more depressed, or ashamed about anything that is being said to you, then you need to stop and ask for help from someone you trust. This will be hard, because you may have some issues of mistrust.

If your Psychiatrist is telling you it will be “Years and Years” of intense therapy, and medication before you will begin feeling better, get a second opinion. No matter how bad you feel, there is no excuse for someone to make you feel worse if they are in charge of your care.

Psychiatry is the only medical profession that deals with feelings and emotions. Don’t open up, if you don’t feel comfortable. Don’t give anyone power over you, that makes you feel vulnerable.

Interview the psychiatrist you are wanting to see. Just like you would do with any specialist, look for referrals from a doctor you trust. If you don’t have a doctor that you feel comfortable with then call your local hospital and ask about psychiatrist’s that use their hospital, ask about their credentials, where they went to school.

As with any health issue, your medical team of health professionals should be communicating with each other. If your psychiatrist is encouraging you not to talk with any of your health team, and are telling you, there is no one “better than they are to help you, and you need only them”. You need to stop treatment and find someone else for your care. If your psychiatrist is not informing your health team of any medication or treatment they are prescribing, you must tell the health team, what medications you are taking, so you are not interfering with other medications you may have been prescribed previously.

Does your Psychiatrist tell you more about their lives, and what they do, than listen to your situation, Do they talk about the patient care of others, if they do, they are most likely sharing your personal information with other patients. Are they asking you to isolate yourself from family and friends, this is not the psychiatric help you need.

If you do feel that your psychiatrist is practicing malpractice, you must take action. Talk to someone. Find the American Medical Association. (AMA) number in the phone book, or call the hospital for information, be specific about what you feel, and what is being done to you. They will take this matter very seriously. At this point, do not talk to the doctor, find another psychiatrist, and tell them what you are going through. Be honest about why you feel the way you do. Legal action is a very difficult and long process. Ask for help, do not try this alone. There are people who will help you and give you advice about what to do at every step.

You need a complete support system to assist you, and keep you safe. If you feel unsafe, then don’t ignore those feelings. Ask for help, that is why you decided to check with a Psychiatrist in the first place. Your safety is utmost in your care. This is your life. Don’t give it up to any one person.