This topic contains 9 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  Flowerchild 4 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #57681
     freedomtochoose 
    Blocked

    Hello there,
    It has taken me a very long time to describe myself in terms of having a disability. The reason for this is that when I was with my ex he tried to use this as an excuse to take my child off me. He didn’t succeed. Years on now and child and I are doing well in lots of ways, although I have difficult days.

    I took myself back to college and hard quite a hard fight getting disabled students support. It was late coming through and my disability (sparked off by the abuse) basically meant that I am slower than many other students and I got a mentor eventually which was/is great.

    I reached the point though after a few years where I was fed up about what I thought were attitudes about my disability in class and even from the tutors, and also fed up that nothing it seemed in my original DSA assessment was being offered to me in terms, for example about extra time for assignments.

    I tried to raise these points, but it seemed that no-one was listening and I felt it had been swept under the carpet by those concerned at college.

    So I have now gone official and made a complaint under the Equality and Diversity Act 2010.

    Of course I can’t and don’t want to go into the details of this here , and it will take some time to be processed. I have had an intial response which shows that it is not being swept aside and is going through the system.

    I’m just looking for moral support here – in a way I wish I had done it before and been more assertive previously, but guess i had been just struggling along, trying to do the work.

    I have not had a formal diagnosis as I never wanted to – but I guess my conclusion years ago with the symptoms was/is that it is chronic ptsd. There really seems to be the image out there in some people’s heads that we are all raving lunatics who will explode at any moment and can’t be relied upon to do anything. This is kind of a joke at college because whereas many people have dropped out – I am still, despite my many challenges, up there in the top half of the class.

    I guess i got to the point where I was fed up of people assuming things about me. Making the complaint has/is actually very scary. Although now that I have initated it, I am less depressed than I was previously. Any thoughts or comments people?

    I am not sure sometimes how I feel about other people saying I am ‘triggered’. I guess I know pretty much by now what my triggers are, and it is not up to other people to define them, after all they don’t know me. Is this unreasonable? Go gently please!

    ftc
    x

  • #57690
     KIP. 
    Participant

    Fantastic. Well done you. It’s only with people like yourself questioning, raising awareness and pushing the boundaries that institutions will change. I’ve done something similar and I know the self doubt that rises. Ignore it. You lived your experience. You know more about PTSD than a lot of professionals. I would seek out a diagnosis from someone with knowledge and experience which will back up your claim. See if you can download some materials to evidence your condition. My PTSD caused and still causes extreme fatigue, lack of concentration and the obvious triggers. Break the stereotype. Change the system, educate the uneducated. Power to you πŸ‘πŸ‘

  • #57693
     freedomtochoose 
    Blocked

    Hey thanks KIP. Really appreciate these words of motivation. Specially since doing the thing has been a bit exhausting so this weekend feel pretty fatigued. Once again thanks and power to you back.

  • #59796
     freedomtochoose 
    Blocked

    Hello everyone. Thanks KIP. Making complaint has been one heck of a struggle.
    However, there is intial good news to report. My complaint/feedback was several pages long.
    I could hardly believe it when the first stage of it was upheld on every point.
    Turns out that allow they had my DSA assessment from the start, really the tutors took no notice
    of it whatsoever. They have offered me a small but not too small some of money as compensation.

    I don’t really know what to do now, as the immediate things have been changed, but I’m still left with a real sadness and anger that the last couple of years at college have been blighted by the lack of understanding and empathy and support I could and should have received. And also that I feel my confidence has been badly affected by the way I have been treated.

    I’ve had to research how the complaints process works. There does not seem to be any independent body overseeing universities, which I find completely outrageous, until you go through three stages of the complaints process and until the uni deems fit to pass it on to the oti which is the independent body.

    I would like to hear what people think here. It is now going to be a huge stretch to finish my work to complete the course in the next few months…part of me wants to go the whole hog and ask for an amount of money that adequately reflects what has happened.

    Part of me sees what has been going on in other universiites for example Bristol, where quite a few students with anxiety and depression did not get appropriate support and there were many suicides. Apparently this student issue around this has been described as the issue of our times.

    I think and I hope some will understand how I feel about this, really what I’m going through is a complete loss of trust and faith in those that were supposed to support my learning. Many of the points raised have been addressed but that doesn’t make the discrimination I had suffered right, and my main request i.e. that I have a change in tutor, has been ignored.

    Imagine having to have to continue to confide in, and share quite deep stuff with people who have already openly admitted that they effectively discriminated against you on grounds of your disability.

    Don’t know if I am strong enough to push any futher alongside doing the actual work to finish the course, it has all been so tiring…

    all best
    ftc
    x

  • #59803
     KIP. 
    Participant

    Take a deep breath. If you have strength you could speak to a no win no fee solicitor and sue for more damages. Attitudes change when big money is involved. (detail removed by moderator). I’ve raised this with my MP. Try to get someone bigger to fight this battle.

  • #66754
     Iwantmeback 
    Participant

    Hi ftc, the government bodies have a long way to go in recognising all types of disabled people. They have also a long way to go before connecting how sustained abuse affects people health wise too. I guess we are the trailblazers in this saga.
    Best of luck
    IWMB πŸ’•πŸ’•

  • #66759
     freedomtochoose 
    Blocked

    thanks everyone, have only just read these posts – will consider another step after fighting thus far with this battle as I know I am still allowed to do so. thanks ladies.
    all best
    ftc
    x

  • #67494
     Ayanna 
    Participant

    Well done for complaining!

    What does your student union say about this?
    They should support you.

    Hang in there!
    Best of luck with your assignments! You can do this!

  • #67511
     Anonymous

    Hi, This is the first time ive read this post. Its a rEally empowering read. Well done to you, I so admire that :):)

    I should probably read up on this but when treated is PTSD curable through trauma counselling? I was told that I needed this type of counselling last year and never addressed it. xx DIY

  • #82112
     Flowerchild 
    Participant

    Good for you for going into action on this!

    And by no means feel you must accept their first offer; it will be for as little as they can hope to get away with.

    Flower x

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