Why it took 35 years to diagnose my autism

When I was four-years-old a speech therapist told my mother that my inability to speak would right itself. Her GP told her not to worry about my severe sleep problems and that I was simply a fussy eater for only eating jam sandwiches and yogurt.

The self-harm and eating disorder I developed as a teen was put down to depression and when I tried to end my life aged eighteen, I was called selfish by the nurse who pumped my stomach.

For 10 years psychiatrists struggled to pin down a label because I didn’t fit into any box. I was eventually misdiagnosed with bipolar disorder, mixed anxiety disorder and borderline personality disorder. When medication failed to improve my mental health I was subjected to multiple sessions of ECT and when that failed, lithium was introduced. When I became blind due to lithium toxicity I discharged myself from the mental health service and weaned off all my medication. I was warned by my psychiatrist that I was putting myself at significant risk without medication.

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9th March 2017
Huffpost Women