Katie's Diary

My voice, my choice

24th October 2017

Choice and control are things that everyone should have in their own lives and we want to encourage every person to maintain these so that they might have a greater sense of independence. In the North East, Malvina is incredibly proud of herself because recently she stood up for her rights when choice and control in her own life were called into question.

Malvina went to the doctors to collect her repeat prescription and discovered that her general practitioner had increased the doses on one of her medications. Soon after taking this new dose she began to feel dizzy and had no control over her emotions over the next few days. Malvina began to monitor when these dizzy spells were occurring and they generally began an hour after she had taken her medication.

Malvina went to get advice from the doctor but she was only told to “see how it goes” and give herself some time to adjust to the new dose.

As the mood swings and dizziness increased, Malvina independently looked for a second opinion from her local pharmacist. The pharmacist offered the same advice as the doctor, stating that these were well known side effects but it’s best to persevere. Malvina’s enablers contacted the general practitioner at her request, they were instructed to just snap the tablet in half; however this is not something the enablers felt comfortable doing.

Malvina became even more unhappy, “I feel like I’m not being listened to, my emotions are so high right now. One evening, about an hour after I had taken my medication I broke down in tears. The dizziness was too much and I didn’t like not feeling in control of my own emotions. My enablers supported me and helped me calm down. I asked what would happen if I refused my medication.”

Her enablers informed her of her rights and she decided that she would not be taking that particular medication until the issue was rectified. The following when she was taking her morning medication, her enablers asked her if she would like to take the medication that had been causing her problems and she calmly informed them that “no, I will not be taking the blue one.”

Her enablers asked her if she knew the possible health consequences of not taking it and any risks that would arise in not taking it. “I told them all the risks involved, I took my other tablets and left that tablet. I informed the doctors and they agreed to return my prescription to its original dose and I feel fine again now. I’m happy this has turned out this way.”

Malvina stood up for herself and her rights when she felt that she wasn’t being listened to by medical professionals. “I wasn’t going to be pushed over, I’m glad my enablers could advise me on it but I knew that taking the tablet would continue to make me unwell and unhappy. I’m proud of standing up for myself.”

Both Malvina’s rights of choice and sense of control were ignored when this prescription was increased but Malvina researched the issues that would arise if she refused the tablet when she was refused to be listened to and overcame these obstacles. Everyone should have control over their own lifestyle and the choice to either take or refuse. We are all proud of Malvina and her courage in overcoming this issue. 

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