The damage carried out in the name of Mental health! - Mencap

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The damage carried out in the name of Mental health!

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My daughter is now in her 40s, she was diagnosed ADHD, Autism, learning difficulties and PDA acknowledged, Placed in a Priory Hospital far from home for almost 3 years, Under section 3. we have watched her physically and mentally deteriorate, without the love and the bonds found in her large loving family!. Its a very cruel form of agony!!!

In January 2019 the CTR report stated that this placement was inappropriate, we are coming up to January again! and she is still there!!! every day twice a day, I have heartbreaking, soul destroying phone calls from her begging me to bring her home, No communication from the Dr or Staff working there! It's is making me very ill with worry and concern for her. We never had serious concerns while she lived at home!

3 Replies
Charlie2750Community friend

Hello lecsmum and welcome to this forum. I am sorry to hear that your daughter is in an inappropiate hospital and she is unhappy.Section 3 is a treatment order which means a doctor must have asked to keep her there for her or others safety.It lasts 6 months but can be renewed each 6 months.I used to work in a psychiatric hospital but only for 6 years while I trained but this was 50 years ago and the Mental Health Act was different but similar.

It must be distressing to hear that your daughter wants to come home but that possibly she may not cope if she was at home.I am assuming that she must have been in a "bad place" when she was first admitted.If there is a better hospital or unit with similar facilities then I wonder if you can appeal at the tribunal?When a "patient" is kept against their will for treatment I believe there are tribunals where you can be present and can put your thoughts forward.

If your daughter needs 24 hour care there may be a process called "Continuing Health Care where an assessment is made and funding is given which could help her to be cared for in a better place.Often in big hospitals, years ago, patients would be in locked wards but not suppervised on a one to one but maybe your daughter may benefit from one to one care.

I may not have helped at all but there are other threads around this and other forums that have similar problems.Seek advice about options from the local Mental Health Partnership because there may be a better option.Caring for Learning Disabled in Hospital is a very specialised skill and most psychiatric units had small hospital units but with nurses that were only trained in Mental Health which is"not the same" In most health teams there are Specialised Learning Disabled nurses that are a rare breed but seek the nurse out and talk to her/him about your problems. Look on the Health website of your area for the nurse.

I am not an expert now but I am just expressing views from my old experiences.

There is more info in the link above on getting an independent Mental Health Advocate who may have ideas.

I do hope you sort it out.


Hello @lecsmum

What an awful time you are having.

Are you getting any support from anyone/any organisation?

Please do call our helpline to talk to one of our trained advisors about this. They are on 0808 808 1111

, or if you prefer you can email them on

Aswell as getting advice about your daughter it really sounds as if you need support too. Please do talk to your GP about how you are feeling and let them know that the worry is making you feel ill.

I do hope you make some progress with this all soon.



Hi Lecsmum,I have just joined as I have been looking for a LD forum.

About 6 years ago I where your daughter was, i was on a section 3 for months in an LD hospital,it was miles from my residential home and even more from my parents house which upset me even more.

I saw the manager come in from my home,she came with a area manager I really hated who didn’t even look at me or say hi,she gave me a big bear hug,I saw them go in a packed room,they wouldn’t let me go see her which upset me a lot and triggered my behaviors.

a while later,the managers quickly ran out without seeing me,which really upset me and I had a big meltdown,they told me-your staff don’t want you back.😞

These LD hospitals do not accommodate transgender patients,i was called by my female/birth name,i was made to be on the female bedroom corridor and I was bullied and sexually abused at one point by other patients.

One of the things staff did I will never forget, I was being very self injuring and hitting out due to feeling very bad,and I was drove into my wet room,I fell to the floor hitting my head off the concrete (they believed taking away my padded helmets-prescribed by my neuro would make me stop banging my head,they need to get into my head and see the hell that drives me to do it before judging.)

They then turned the shower on,i was fully clothed but not only that I have severe sensory issues including with the feel of water,they knew this and still went ahead.

These hospitals also do not care if you have severe sensory needs with food,they said eat that or nothing-to me.I lived off nothing as well as junk food bought in by my parents once a week.

Several staff would tell me, you are never getting out- which would set me off instantly,I had no care or understanding off them,apart from three staff (there were many,and I had to have one with me at all times).

These hospitals don’t care if you have mental illness as well,they aren’t great with MH.

I was diagnosed with severe paranoid pyschosis and severe major depressive disorder at 25,I had been groomed and badly bullied online which led to the pyschosis but the depression I had had since 10 years old- I had no way to communicate it,until I started interacting with my LD team psych at age 25.

The hospital staff told me I was making up the terrible hallucinations I saw/felt or the things I thought and I need to behave or they will restrain me.

Only one staff there believed what I was going through,I will never ever forget her kindness,I still know her name.

I learnt through the way they treated me,that I need to hide my feelings thoughts to get out of there,rather than get better,so a lot of us just say we are better when we are hell inside.

If you asked for PRN medication in whatever way you communicate, they would make you wait over an hour as the nurse always focussed on the same one person all the time,which meant I would get into a worser bad state Whilst waiting,I would be restrained and shouted at for daring to take them away from the person who was in high distress 24/7,I got punched over and over in the back of my neck by him even though he had three staff and I had one,most people had no staff to themselves and they were even worse off,I held the guy on both sides and turned him around so he could get out his feelings that way,the staff thanked me for not punching him-weird.

the staff would all be busy talking to each other,I still live with that painful injury to this day.

I was restrained every day there,for silly things like ignoring them and they said I wasn’t listening to commands -any excuse they would set the hospital alarm off and they’d all dive on me,months of that led to a bigger hell I put up with today,they damaged my spinal nerves which led to severe double sciatica,widespread severe peripheral neuropathy and almost inability to walk,I now use under arm crutches as I have no strength or feeling in my hands.

Your daughter needs to be found a suitable placement ASAP,Which will help with convincing the hospital into removing the section. The longer you stay there the harder it is to go back to normality.

Keep getting her LD team social worker on it. i was moved out of the family home at 18, put into a institution,and although I have had so many bad things happen to me as back then it wasn’t monitored very well,I am more experienced in life and will find it easier to cope when my parents die than if I had lived at home with them,I am sorry for the length of my post,I am an LD and autism activist.


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