A couple months ago I was contacted by a woman from my HMO whose job it was to make people aware of the mental health resources that were available and then connect people to them. I don’t remember how the conversation went, but it generally ended up with her mentioning that the state had a program that might be able to help me with all kinds of things. She told me that she would get a hold of them and have them contact me.

It took a while for her to get a hold of them and to get them to contact me. By a while, I mean it was over a week, closer to two weeks even. When I finally got a hold of someone they set up an appointment shortly after, and I thought the ball was finally moving. Until I got to the appointment and found out in order to even be able to apply for the program (what they call the functional screening) I had to be evaluated by one of their certified mental health professionals and have their medical person sign off on the process.

I ended up making an appointment with their approved counselor a week or two later, but unfortunately the woman for the state who was handling this couldn’t get a hold of the person on their end that needed to sign for it. This went on for several weeks until they finally said that it wasn’t likely they’d be able to get a signature and asked if my primary care physician could sign it.

I said okay, but at the time I felt a bit perplexed as to why we didn’t do that in the first place. This all led up to the day I would go in to do my functional screening, which despite the impressive name, was nothing more than the woman who worked for the state entering in a bunch of info based on questions she asked me. All of which would be run through an algorithm and a decision would be made in 7 seconds (as she told me)

Not to keep anyone in suspense, but the algorithm determined I was ineligible. I left feeling pretty bummed. Despite not putting a lot of stock in it initially, the amount of waiting and hoops I needed to jump through had put in an expectation. Maybe I thought they could do something, or maybe it was just because it felt like I was finally doing something. In either case, I was not in a good spot that day.

I have all matter of opinions on why I think I was rejected. Mainly that I think their algorithm is a crock of shit that’s probably looking for the least amount of people to help that it can, because this is a state funded program and we know what state republicans probably think of that. No handouts.

It didn’t take me very long to get over it. In truth, I wasn’t sure what it could do for me. I was just doing it out of hope that it could offer something that could get my life moving forward. Something that it might have actually did by sheer accident of getting me to seek counseling again.

I’ve had close to half a dozen sessions and compared to the therapy I’ve had throughout life, they’ve been the most effective to date. Though that could just be an effect of where I am now versus where I was when I had therapy in the past. I do acknowledge that a lot of things have changed both because of therapy I’ve had and experiences.

Going to keep sticking with it and see where things go. There’s a couple of things I want to share about in regards to my sessions, but I’m going to hold off until I feel like I can be a bit more coherent with what I want to say. I don’t feel like it will be long though before I do share. Just wanted to let people know what I’ve been up to