Whilst taking prescribed medication is not quite like being wrongfully imprisoned it feels somewhat like I have had something taken from me. From a young age when I first developed epilepsy I was put on a drug that essentially turned me into a zombie, I wasnt always the quickest of children but certainly never to the level it made me.
I was bullied for being fat, slow & shy (not to mention the school blazer I had to wear when no other girl did, it all changed in year 9 but by that time the damage was done). Most of the teachers assumed I was slow – hours of superficial assessments that didnt really get me any extra help other than being put down to the bottom sets for everything – then they realised I wasnt stupid and had to move me back up.
Realising the effects of the drugs I was taken back off them (the weight gain and developmental stuff was horrendous which looking back was still too late). I was left to my own devices to carry on – having found it horribly difficult to make any proper friends or build up my confidence the rest of school was an emo waiting game for school to end so I could get out and go to college. Struggling with my confidence levels, weight and sexuality – I was told ‘its a phase’ and ‘you’ll grow out of it’.
Learning about SEN is a kick in the face, the times we struggled, were accused of being the troublesome ones or were simply misunderstood. Only to discover now we were the ones would required the extra support and understanding.
When I thought I’d had another seizure at university my world was turned upside down again, I begged not to be put on the same drug and was assured this one would be fine – being naive I never thought to look up how it worked and my medical professional parents were unlikely to be the ones arguing with the consultant and so it began.
19 years later of struggling with a wide variety of issues from digestive, mental health and a few others and no evidence of a further episode and the terrifying moment I realised how high my blood pressure was – I am about to start life as an adult with a non medicated brain.
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