Letter: Kids need better psychiatric centers


It is no wonder we have a huge problem of mental health here in the state of New Mexico. It is so hard to get the help you are seeking.

Psychiatric centers in New Mexico are not only scarce, but few have the intentions of getting to the root of a person’s mental/ emotional struggles. I believe a psychiatric center should try to help solve and conquer one’s mental blocks. The psychiatric center I experienced was awful. They said they needed to keep a “therapeutic space” but in my eyes, there was nothing therapeutic about it. It was cold and all the staff was more or less rude. I believe that in order to work out a mental issue, one must talk about it not only with a therapist who cares, but with peers as well.

In this center, people were not allowed to touch, and were not allowed to speak about their mental blocks with others in the center. Since I could not talk to my peers about what had happened to me, I had to rely on the staff and my “therapist.” The staff were very hard to talk to for a few reasons, one being they honestly could care less and did not have the time of the day to actually talk. However, it was even harder to talk to a therapist because we were lucky if we saw them twice in one week and once you met with them, all they would say was, “Oh you cannot leave because you are still too depressed,” or “Why don’t you try this drug?” The way I see it, this does not help resolve issues in any way.

Being someone who really does want to work on my issues, this “treatment” did not work. People in these facilities must simply fake a smile so they can leave, and actually begin to handle their issues with someone who cares and really wants to help. That all being said, I hope I put a bug in your ear to offer your support and take a stand for the kids not getting the right help in these psychiatric centers.

– River Joy Johnson, a Taos resident.