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Published on July 01, 2017

Lisa Eley & Behavioral Health

Lisa Eley
Patient: Lisa Eley, Gaithersburg, MD

Location: Adventist HealthCare Behavioral Health

Services: Acute Inpatient Services

Lisa Eley didn’t know she was depressed until one day she reached for a bottle of pills on her dresser. For more than a year prior to that moment, she had endured harassment and bullying behavior from a supervisor at work. The experience left her feeling hopeless and defeated.

“I knew something was wrong when I reached for the bottle of pills,” says Lisa. “I drove myself to the emergency room immediately.”

Lisa was assessed at Adventist HealthCare Shady Grove Medical Center’s Emergency Department and later transferred to the Montgomery unit, an adult inpatient treatment unit at Adventist HealthCare Behavioral Health & Wellness Services in Rockville.

The Montgomery Unit treats adults with mood disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder. Patients who are treated on the Montgomery unit typically live independently in the community, however, due to sudden changes such as increased stress, the loss of a loved one or a lifestyle change experience a mental health crisis.

According to the National Association on Mental Illness, approximately one in five people have a diagnosable mental health disorder in a given year.

“I am grateful to Adventist HealthCare Behavioral Health & Wellness Services for helping me get my life back on track during a very challenging time,” says Lisa. “I am also grateful to have the support of my friends and family on my journey to stay mentally healthy.”

Lisa, who now lives in Gaithersburg, shares her story in the hopes of helping others. Her book, Thirteen Geese in Flight: One Black Woman’s Ascent into Mental Illness, documents her experience coping with mental illness as an African-American woman. She also participates in community events to help spread the word about the symptoms of mental illness and the importance of seeking treatment.

She hopes by telling her story she can save lives, one mind at a time.

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