Yesterday I attended the Fife mental health strategy consultation 'What matters to you?' in Glenrothes and during the proceedings there were topics discussed around tables facilitated by managers from NHS Fife and Fife Council social work service. A facilitator at the first table I attended got annoyed at my input and recommended that I 'play the game'.
I laughed at the thought that my voluntary participation at this event meant that I should be playing the game. What game was that? Agreeing with compulsory psychiatric treatment and the use of force? Being compliant? Only expressing opinions that managers thought appropriate? It was both funny and ironic. Straitjackets at the ready. Tokenistic tick box involvement as usual in Fife's mental health world.
I had to leave the event early to attend the Cross Party Group on Mental Health at Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh, a group I've been participating in for about a year or more. An opportunity to hear about national mental health initiatives, good practice and different options, this time around counselling, psychotherapy and CBT available for people with mental health problems. Mild to moderate was mentioned, as well as common and enduring. I was listened to and treated with respect.
On trying to get away sharp from the Fife event, to catch the Edinburgh train, I was accosted by a senior NHS Fife manager who said I should be working with them to improve services (missed the train, had to drive). She said that I couldn't have been bullied, it wasn't possible, even as she attempted herself to pick on me and put me down. More irony since over the last year I'd raised a number of complaints about psychiatric services, many of which were not taken seriously or even believed. The word of the psychiatric nurse against the psychiatric patient/carer. Score one nil. Getting away with it.
I was told by her that improvements had happened. But what proof do I have? They said the same thing in 2011, she and another manager, after I raised a number of concerns about psychiatric treatment in 2010 and then in February 2012 my son was forcibly treated, restrained and secluded in rooms for hours at a time with a broken hand. I wasn't informed about his injuries and then was bullied by 5 psychiatric nurses a few days later for trying to see my son and assess his physical and mental health.
Six months later I found out that the adult protection investigation led by social work had accused me of 'psychological harm'. As usual trying to blame mothers for system failures. [Collusion and Control - The Reality of Mental Illness] Even getting the police involved in their shenanigans. I gave NHS Fife and Fife Council social workers a year to respond to my complaints, to take me seriously and to treat me with respect.
I'm still waiting.