For reasons too complex to go into, I had a recent visit from Brent Social Services. You may be wondering whether this is because I've recently been beating up my two teenage kids. Actually not, though sometimes I feel like it but in reality it would be far more likely that they would be beating me up!!
The reason is irrelevant to the subject of this post. Which is that when their report came back, it said, that the biological mother has a history of mental health issues.
Now, I am of course their biological mother, and those of you who know my story, will also know that I have indeed had a history of mental health issues. But entirely caused by antidepressant medication. I was having sleepless nights, was prescribed escitalopram, went into a toxic delirium lasting four days, ended up in hospital where no one realised it was the pill that made me ill. I was given more antidepressants and antipsychotics and it was only luck that got me off them after a year of being suicidal and being unable to leave the house. I ended up in a different hospital who took me off all the drugs and within weeks of agonising cold turkey I was better. I was lucky it was only a year of my life that was stolen.
Since writing a book and running my campaign, I know how lucky I am not to have long term physical side effects from these drugs. I know of many who have diabetes after being on olanzapine, there are people who are unable to have sex years after coming off the drugs, and many who suffer neurological damage years later. So, yes, I know I've got off very lightly.
However, I find it very galling that I have it on my records that I have a history of mental health problems. I imagine it could impact on my chances of getting a mortgage, life insurance, or if I ever wanted to work with children. With this in mind, this week I penned a letter to Brent social services along with a copy of my book and a full explanation that my mental health issues are medication induced.
So lets see what they come back with.... There's a cliffhanger for you to rival The Archers......
Meanwhile, I'd love to hear from anyone who has had similar issues and with a story to share.