(names and locations have been removed)
To Whom it may concern,
My husband phoned today to follow-up a complaint we submitted a few weeks ago and he asked me to re-submit via email at your request.
Our complaint is against C**** H**** CMHT and also Dr ************ who is personally responsible for blocking my access to secondary care. Dr ********* assessed me some months ago after I tried twice to get help via GP referrals. The first referral resulted in my being sent for CBT, however the councellor was unqualified to treat my condition and decided to discharge me with some phone numbers for self-referral and charity run crisis services. My GP, put in a second referral to C**** H**** specifically recommending secondary care, which was soon followed by an assessment.
****** **********’s attitude towards me in this assessment was annoyed, she said she was confused why I was there as I had received psychotherapy for a number of years and if that didn’t work there was little point in doing more. She made the point of outlining her expertise in dissociative identity disorder and explained her view that too much therapy would be more harm than good , that I would become dependant on the system and that my alters needed to be suppressed and prevented from re-traumatising me. Her choice of expression was condescending and insulting, and quite frankly she missed the point entirely. I agree with her that to discuss one traumatic event every week for 5 years is going to have limited, if not negative, results. I also understand the risks of re-traumatising through therapy. My condition is routed in complex trauma, a lot of which I don’t fully remember as it was compartmentalised through the development of alters and dissociative amnesia. An expert in DID should understand the nature of the condition and how it differs from PTSD. I spent 3-4 years with Dr ***** ******* piecing my memory back to together and beginning to integrate with my alters, but this process was interrupted when we were forced to end sessions in 2015. Since then I tried to continue with the help of my husband, but reached a point last year where things were getting out of control again; flashbacks, nightmares and hallucinations all became increasingly intrusive. Regardless, ***** insisted secondary care would not be helpful and CBT was all she could offer. I attended two sessions of CBT at P********* Clinic, after these the councellor once again said she could not help me. I already know and do all of the routine management and mood stabilising techniques she was trying to teach me, she had nothing new to offer me and she saw that my problems were deeply routed and complex, depression and anxiety being the least of my concerns. After trying to once again get me into secondary care however, I received a phone call explaining that ***** ******** had refused me again, saying “the CBT is there but if that is not wanted there is nothing else we can offer”. In other words, its 6-10 weeks of CBT or nothing even though the primary care councellors were telling her they are not qualified to meet my needs.
I reached crisis point. I went missing for 7 hours, I have no memory of what happened but I was found very disoriented and I had self harmed. The police were called, my husband located and I was taken to A&E were my wounds (thankfully superficial) were dressed and I was referred to the RAID team. I had an appointment with the psychiatrist and psychologist and am currently awaiting their recommendations. They decided it best to contact the C**** H**** to get the other side of the story before making more contrasting recommendations, which I understand and respect.
At the moment I have no professional support. My hallucinations are fluctuating and I am struggling to cope despite my structured routine and supportive family. My husband and I are angry that we were left to reach crisis on the basis of one woman and her statistical approach to needs assessment. I have no doubt that her reasons are driven by waiting list statistics and cost cuts to secondary services, I understand the injustice of this and that she is not personally responsible for government failings. However this was not an apologetic earnest desire to help, hindered by lack of resources, this was a dismissive callous disregard for personal needs and a refusal to accept the complexity of the situation and this lead to situation out of control. Therefore we want to put forward a formal complaint against the CMHT at C*** H**** and ***** **********.