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IAPT are shit

January 21, 2015

Content warning: violation of boundaries, medics being shit.

For the uninitiated, IAPT is supposed to mean Improving Access to Psychological Therapies.

There are so many reasons that IAPT are shit, it seems churlish to complain about only a few of them, but still.

IAPT have really outdone themselves with their latest letter to me.

Background: I have a condition called Non Epileptic Attack Disorder (NEAD), the primary treatment for which is psychotherapy. I have been referred to and had many sessions with a specialist psychotherapist, but the treatment has not yet stopped my seizures.

I was referred to my local IAPT back in the summer because my relationship with my psychotherapist has reached a difficult point which we can’t get past together, in part because we see the world very differently on a small but crucial detail, but mostly because although I have made significant progress over the last few years, I am still essentially a bull in the china shop of my own emotions, and I have some significant work to do before I am ready to take the next step with the (expensive, resource-heavy, very emotionally draining) psychotherapy.

The first IAPT person I saw made me cry for an hour, ignored everything I said and treated me like an idiot. So the latest person I spoke to was already my second time around this block.

We had two phone calls. Each long. Each tiring. And by the end of the second one, it was clear that she couldn’t help me any more than the first one, even if she was nicer about it.

But, during the course of these phone calls, I disclosed quite a lot of stuff to her. A couple of these things are ones that a lot of people know, but that I’ve been working really hard over many years to keep out of my general notes, and to only disclose to people who keep separate notes, ie, psychological staff.

The fact that I’m kinky.

The fact that a member of my family sexually abused me when I was young. 

Last night, I discovered that both these facts are just right there in the letter the IAPT therapist has written to my GP. They’re in my notes. My general practice notes.

It took me 10 years to get rid of the mistake in my notes that said I’d had meningitis as a child when I didn’t. I’m never going to be able to get rid of this.

And after all that, they’ve not even got anything useful to offer me.

Fuck you, IAPT. Fuck you very much.


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  1. *offers hugs* Unfortunately, admitting having been a victim of abuse* to basically any NHS employee *will* get it put on the first page of your NHS file, supposedly so that GPs etc will be extra careful of your boundaries and get extra-clear consent to physically examine you etc. As someone with several “This person has been abused” labels on his NHS file I’m… less than convinced this is actually helpful.

    *Caveat: this seems to magically not apply if you are a child at the time

  2. ((offers hugs)) this is filthy rotten business. i’ve had a similar thing happen to me, and i still feel violated by that psychiatrist. x

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