I've had such an intense feeling of anger and sadness that has come over me in the last day or so . I keep thinking about where I was three years ago at this time , and how I felt and what I went through, and what was done to me , and I wonder - Why have I never really given up ?
In December of 2003, I was taken to the psych E.D. at St. Mary's to be evaluated. I was kept overnight and then transferred to Rochester General Hospital where they had a bed , so that I could be admitted . But I still had to go through the RGH emergency department first.
When I got to the E.D. at Rochester General , the nurse immediately demanded that I give up my underwear . I protested , because I had my period at the time .She didn't care. But it was also the idea of being in a public place and feeling exposed like that .As a survivor of physical and sexual abuse , the thought of it made me feel unsafe . But she kept insisting that I turn over my underpants , and said that it was "policy". I kept refusing , because it was so important to me to keep them on . I had already been through the metal detector , but she said I could have something hidden in them . She could've just looked. I offered to show her there was nothing .I thought she would give up , because there was really no good reason for it.
Instead she brought several large male security guards into the room to threaten me.I refused, and just sat on the bed shaking my head , no . There was no way I was giving them up . I sat there and did not move . The nurse decided to use force to get them from me. When she signaled the security guards to move , I had nowhere to go.I was still sitting on the bed and tried to move back , but the wall was behind me.
They lunged at me shouting , "Stop resisting! Stop resisting!" When they grabbed me , they first slammed my head into the wall behind me . I saw stars . I was not resisting , but they kept shouting. They shoved my face down into the mattress , and one of them kneeled on the side of my face and neck while the others were twisting my wrists so severely that I expected them to break at any moment .I could not breathe . My lungs burned , and my head pounded . I could hear the bones in my neck crunching under his knee . I was thinking - ' I don't want to die like this.' The nurse used this time to pull up my gown and cut off my underpants .
When she was done , they didn't let me go right away . When they got up , and I could finally breathe , they stuck a towel over my face and held it there . They were afraid that I might spit at them . I have never spit on anyone in my life , and I was too busy crying and trying to get air back into my lungs. They all went out of the room when the nurse told them to lock me inside . They did . As if I had just attacked them . As if I were a threat to their safety . As if I were a criminal .
I layed there and cried . My face and neck and arms and wrists hurt so badly. There was blood behind one of my ears , because he had been kneeling on my earrings that were still in my ears. I didn't want them to kill me , but I did want to die. I didn't want to think that this is what I'd have to deal with for my entire life . I hope it was worth to all of them . I know they did not go home thinking that they did anything wrong . They were angry with me .
The nurse came back later to check my blood glucose level. I refused , which is my legal right.I told her to leave me alone. I couldn't even stand to be in the same room with her. She decided to go get her buddies , the security guards to threaten me.The guys walked into the room and had a conversation with each other about how much I was enjoying all of this.They already had their gloves on .
So , I'm thinking about this now and asking myself if I should've just given the underpants to the nurse . But I couldn't . I just couldn't . Did I make myself a victim here ?
I'd like to think this wouldn't happen to me now . But I think now , they would have to kill me.
Tuesday, December 5, 2006
Posted by The Memory Artist at 7:40 PM