So I got to see my Mum the other day which is normally nice, but this time it was at the hospital for a mental health appointment. My OCD has become extremely challenging to live with and I am struggling to cope. She handed over a copy of the letter which she received from the college explaining why they felt the need to kick me out. Names and details of the college have been edited out for privacy purposes.
Following on from our meeting on Wednesday 11th September, please accept this letter as confirmation of your withdrawal from the above course. It is with regret that [college] has to withdrawal you from your programme of study, although the college believes that this action is to ensure the most positive outcome for your future.
As discussed at our previous meeting this decision was reached, due to a number concerns have been raised during the induction period of the course. These include the following:
-Non disclosure of information pertinent to [my] health and well-being at enrolment and induction
-Recent disclosure of information regarding violent behaviour, during a meeting to assess [my] support programme leading to serious safeguarding concerns for herself and her fellow peers and tutors.
-The college is unable to meet the level of support necessary to ensure [I] successfully completes her chosen programmes of study
It is apparent that [my] needs extend beyond the provisions available at [college] based upon her recent assessment. This period away from [college] will enable [me] to explore support options to meet her needs and therefore, to be able to access an appropriate course in the future.
Firstly what this letter tells me is that the person who wrote it could do with taking the English GCSE which I went to a different college for and successfully completed (yes those weren’t typos, they were spelling/grammar errors!). Secondly it tells me that they obviously were not willing to hear out my side of the story that was told about the ‘violent episode’. In the ‘violent episode, a staff member was shouting in my face so I tried to move her away from me, but ended up clumsily slapping her face when I had intended just to push her. But regardless, there was no police intervention, no charges, no trial so therefore why has it been decided that I am now a risk to my peers and tutors? Not to mention the fact that it is not always in my control (as my TS can cause me to lash out unintentionally).
I remember writing all four of my diagnoses on my enrolment form and describing in great detail, including my previous aggressive outbursts (I don’t deny ever being aggressive or violent, however circumstances are rarely looked at), my conditions and how they affect me. The person who we spoke to failed to pass on the information to the relevant person and the enrolment day itself was a complete shambles just trying to push everyone through as quickly as possible. As for what caused my seizure, even I don’t know what it was as I haven’t got a diagnosis, nor have I seen a neurologist yet (27th November is my appointment), therefore I did not fail to disclose anything.
Where the support is concerned, the people who run the supported living scheme I live in were willing to provide 1:1 support for the whole time I was attending the college in case I had another blackout/seizure and needed to go to hospital. This offer was not even considered.
I think though, the thing that got to me the most about this letter was the part which states that this was to ensure the most positive outcome for my future! Since college stopped, my OCD has trebled in severity (sitting at home with nothing to do 24/7 increases the episodes), I have become depressed and I am literally going mad with boredom. I have not been offered any alternative courses (although they said I might be able to do some kind of ‘return to college’ course in January which sounds crap) and there are no other colleges in the area which I can get to by public transport. My aggressive rages have returned as the more time I spend in the house, the more my sound sensitivity causes issues (I might have ‘misophonia’ literally ‘hatred of sound’ but it hasn’t been diagnosed yet) and when I hear a ‘trigger sound’ I can literally go from fine to raging in a matter of milliseconds. There is no cure for this condition even if I am diagnosed so am I not ever allowed to go to college because of it?
So anyway I am angry, fed up, depressed, you name it I am feeling it. I am wondering what the point was of trying to go to college and make my life better in the first place. Strangely enough though, this time round it wasn’t the students who made me feel unwelcome. Thanks college, thanks a bunch.