That ended up not being so bad. One of the reasons I'd never asked for help before was because the thought of ending up in a place like that terrified me, but the institution was run alright, for the most part. The other patients were really kind, and I made friends there, some of whom I'm still in contact with. I also got to do art therapy and participate in group for the first time. But after awhile, being there felt claustrophobic. You have to adhere to a set schedule, and you're watched all the time. There's no locks on doors, staff invade your privacy, and they confiscate items that could be used to hurt yourself. It was costing my parents thousands of dollars to have me stay there, as well. I just wanted out at that point. So I lied to the doctors, saying that group therapy was working, and told them bullshit they wanted to hear. They let me go home after that.
When I began living on campus again, one of my friends approached me to ask what was going on. I told them what happened, and they apologized for not being there. My roommate moved out the day before I went to the institution, and after everyone learned about what she did, she became the most unpopular person in our dorm, according to my acquaintance People began hanging out with me afterwards. For that year, I wasn't alone. A lot of the members of that friend circle were LGBT art students, and their support helped me to come out as transgender. I've known for a long time, but still haven't transitioned.
Unfortunately, everyone sort of drifted apart. They stopped keeping in contact with me after awhile, and I lost the support I had. People I knew in high school were gone as well. I had other roommates, some equally as bad, but we never were able to connect, and attempts went nowhere. This was at the height of COVID, back when the pandemic started.
I spent the rest of my semesters by myself.