Disability Discrimination Is Rife

This is an in depth description of a traumatic miscarriage and life threateningly poor care, followed by a rainbow pregnancy during with the guest poster was treated with disregard and a high level of discrimination and lack of reasonable adjustment for her needs, treating everyone the “same”, is the epitome of discrimination.

A Traumatic Miscarriage

“Last year I started bleeding around 6 weeks, it was not spotting but really heavy bleeding. I rang early pregnancy unit and was told “don’t worry bleeding is very normal”.

I explained this was not just bleeding bit I was losing a lot of blood then then said nothing they could do, that night around 1in the morning, I woke up to a pool of blood in the bed and I was so weak I couldn’t stand.

My partner rang 999 as I was slipping in and out of consciousness, at first my partner was told they don’t come out for miscarriages. He rang them back and explained how serious it was getting.

The ambulance turned up 5.30 am, I was wheeled into A&E where a few doctors saw me and said needed to be seen by gynaecologist.

I was only offered pads once and I sat, waiting in A&E bed surrounded by the elderly, I was waiting to see the gynaecologist from 5.30 am to 3 pm. I was never offered food or drink in that time, but the elderly people around me had been offered both.

I was just left in the bed, when the gynaecologist checked my cervix she decided to pull something out, she then looked at it, in horror and so did the nurse next to her.

She put it in sample bottle and told me to keep the sample with me and give it to someone on the ward to test. In the sample tube was my very little baby, you could see exactly what is was.

I had to carry my tiny baby in a bottle from 3pm until I finally got bed on the ward at 10.30 pm that night. I then had to sign how they would dispose of my baby on the ward.

I eventually got given a scan the next day. My partner was not allowed in I have no idea why, so I had to be told by a very blunt emotionless EPU (early pregnancy unit) nurse that everything had come away and I can go home.

My Rainbow Pregnancy

A few weeks ago I had to go in for a anti D injection as I had a bleed. My midwife arranged the appointment at the hospital and didn’t tell me where. I just said in the maternity area of the hospital, I turned up at the appointment time and was sent to early pregnancy unit I sat there for nearly a hour.

Every time I tried to get midwives attention they walked past and blanked me I have high functioning autism and one of the things that can trigger a meltdown is being ignored and not understanding what’s going on.

So I had a meltdown.

I was in tears and scared, a nurse came over to me and asked me if I was OK.

I explained so she walked me back down to reception and rang every department but they had no appointment for me and didn’t know why I was there even though I had explained why.

I was eventually accepted by a department, I still have no idea which one as I was sent to about 3 before this one.

They put me on ward with 4 other women and left me there for 4 hours, not once updating me on what was going. After those 4 hours, a doctor saw me and examined me and said I needed to have another blood test to check if I was O negative, even though it was in my notes from blood test a few weeks ago.

He also said he would book me a scan for tomorrow to check if the baby was doing OK. So I said can I have the Anti D injection tomorrow when I come for the scan. He agreed, so I had the blood test and went home.

The next day I rang the number like I had been told by the doctor, the rude lady from the early pregnancy unit had said to me it was never booked and it’s dangerous to scan so much and I had a scan few weeks earlier, but I was not buying her excuse.

She then went on to give me the speech I’ve heard countless time times from this heartless early pregnancy unit.

She said “it’s very common to spot in early pregnancy stop worrying”, I then told her I’ve been though 4 miscarriages and this was more then just “spotting”.

She told me to go in for my anti D and I asked her could I bring someone with me as my carer, as I had such a bad experience the day before and I explained to her I have a disability, and so I should be allowed to be accompanied by someone to help me communicate. She said “well it is not very fair on the other women is it”. Yes, it’s not fair thank you for making me feel guilty over a disability I can’t control.

I turned up to the appointment with my carer and they tried to stop me from going in. I stated my rights under disability act and how the hospital need to make reasonable adjustments so they let me and my carer sit in a side room together, while the consultant read my notes and did the scan herself.

My carer had to stay in the side room for the scan and injection, she apologised but I’m still having to fight the midwives regarding my reasonable adjustments which I wouldn’t have needed if they hadn’t messed up my appointment for the anti D injection.

It was bad before but covid has bad things so much worse and hopefully once I’m settled with the new baby I’m going to look into some sort of campaigning and awareness for pregnant women with disabilities as it seems NHS maternity services are not very good with disabled women.”

In response our gentle enquires, the guest poster said “yes this pregnancy is going very well still struggling with consultant’s and midwives but my doula has been a godsend” – thank the goddess for Doulas.

You can Donate to support They Said To Me,  Share Your Storyaccess supportleave a review, buy merchandise and hire us to speak to groups of birth workers, midwives and student midwives.

For support with miscarriage please contact The Miscarriage Association, Simba can provide a beautiful memory box for loss at any stage in pregnancy and also memory boxes to birth workers and other professionals.

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