Same same but different.

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Used a lot in Thailand, especially in an attempts to sell something but can mean just about anything depending on what the user is trying to achieve

Q “Is this a real rolex?” 

A ” Yes Sir, same same but different

When I was in Thailand I learnt that something can look like something, but still be different. That is a lesson I’ve learnt many times, in different situation. Today I want to write about health policy. I have written about my thoughts when it comes to treatment at psychiatric wards before. I know that we all try our best, but sometimes what we think is best for others, is just assumptions that we need to be aware of. This week, I got the chance to see how something can be so alike, but completely different. 

I had the chance to work one day at another psychiatric ward one hour away from the ward I’m in now. It is still in the same organization with the same leaders, and even have many of the same patients, but the treatment and attitudes are completely different. It’s hard to describe what the difference consists of, but I know they have worked hard with letting patients decide more. We have a psychiatric ward where the patients have different forms of addictions, and I know they include patients in every decision they make. The patients are even included in meetings! It is given that the patients will be heard and included in their own treatments, as it should be. 

Another thing that strikes me as different, is the mood on the ward. There is more open space, and the nurses and assistants sits in groups talking peacefully. I sat there, too, discussing politics while patients sat there, playing board-games, reading the papers or simply listening to the conversations. It is so good to see that by giving people freedom and the chance to be heard, the same can be very different. For all the therapists who think that patients are ‘resistant’ or with no ‘insight’ in their own illnesses, they should see those patients. When they are given space and a listening ear, they are finally free to explore their ‘resistances’. They are more ready to take in everything they’ve been through, because the environment around them is safer. Only when safe, people are ready to explore reality. Safety in a place where people can shape their surroundings, is what a psychiatric ward should offer. So, I hope we can embrace new thoughts and transform the same old story. We need something different.

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