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MH disclosure? vs patient confidentiality?

(7 Posts)
cestlavielife Mon 22-Nov-10 10:36:08

what disclosures on MH can courts ask for?
how can I get evidence exP is of sound mind - if he wants contact with DC?
how do you get the forensic psych assessment?
how can I make long term decisions re: contact without knowing the diagnosis/prognosis?
to what extent can I ask for evidence of being treated (medication and counselling/therapy)? in what circumstances can I even request that? or can court request that?

long story...exP v depressed from 2005 thru to mid-2007 when he "exploded" attacking myself and DS; left, came back, agressive/violent during 2008 (i moved out from FMH with DC in april 2008), unable to accept separation; displays tics/lack of self control and aggression/violence when in "depressed" state (is only diagnosis i have so using that term loosely as I know agression is not necessarily aprt of it).

when "not depressed" is bullying/demanding - v. hard work to keep things on set routine and put DC first.

been thru contact centre for contact in 2009 and pushed by CAFCASS/judge "you must move onto unsupervised and overnights as time goes by"...exP was in his "not depressed" phase from jan 2010 to oct 2010 ( i had set a kinda deadline "12 month before i can feel not worried" in my head)

half term he crashes, (so nine/10 months in...) exhibits violence in front of DC and DDs say they scared, he has pulled one DD's hair for no reason etc. so i stoppped contact except supervised (I said "none except supervised" - as per court order which says supervised unless otherwise agreed - giving me the right/responsibility to amke that decision...); he ahsnt asked for contact, yet. but am sure he will as has been the pattern...

i passed on info to GP, DDs fine and just happy they not seeing him. DS autsitic asking and doesnt understand situation.

GP wont say anything about whether he has been admitted/is getting treatment etc- just let on "there is stuff going on" .

i get that i cant be told about treatment etc...but how can I make long term decisions re: contact without knowing the diagnosis/prognosis?

if he comes up asking for contact, what rights do i then have to then get information on the diagnosis/prognosis?

now presumably he lays low then perks up again following the pattern of "depressed2/not depressed over past five years - but if i dont know exactly what his diagnosis is, how can i make correct decisions?

ifeel i have been fooled by CAFCASS/court who have somehow thought oh well he was depressed about being abandoned by his partner and she took the kids away from him...he is just an abandoned father who wants to see his kids, ok some concerns so yes we will say first go via contact centre but please do rapidly move on from there .... yes they accepted contact centre etc but it was always with a "of course this will progress".

so it did progress and it has fallen flat/bit me in the rear again...and i didnt quite see it coming...and i potentially put my DC at risk...

how can i - or indeed can i - get some kind of disclosure of his state of MH etc so i can make longer term decisions about contact?

i have no doubt that in a few weeks/months he will pop up again in his "not depressed" state - because that is how it has been to extremes for past four years. the highs and lows were there all along i think but got worse since 2005/2006.

and when in his "not depresed" state he is able to bully/dupe everyone...with still risks eg this year twice losing oldest DS who is autistic during his "non depressed" (aka I am all powerful) phase.

or does really bad stuff have to happen first?

what disclosures on MH can courts ask for?
when the "depressive" phase comes with violence? and the not depressed phase is slightly dodgy too - losing the children, nnot feeding them, etc. (i use depressive reluctantly - i know not all people who get depression become violent. it seems to be an excuse for him....)

how do you get the forensic psych assessment?

and there is also the stalker-ish behaviour "we could all be together again" stuff - during both depressive/non-depressive phases... his messages thanking me for attending a school event "with" him "it was so nice to be altogether" (i did not go "with" - i went to same event arrivng/leaving at different times, and didnt talk to him except when in proximity with others and did the "hi" thru gritted teeth thing...

i have tried to just ignore.

but maybe it is important?
shows obsessive/stalker state of mind? potentially dangerous?

mumblechum Mon 22-Nov-10 11:31:15

You need to make an application for a directions order, specifically a direction that a psychiatric assessment is made.

Who will pay for it? Are you publicly funded?

The court may also say that there should be an assesment of your mental health as well (I'm not suggesting that there's a problem, but his solicitor may well argue that you should both be assessed, for balance.

The actual procedure is for you/your solicitors to raise the issue in correspondence, and to put forward the names and CVs of 3 psychologists/psychiatrists. If not agreed before the directions hearing, then the district judge will listen to both sides and decide whether an assesment would be helpful, and if so, whether on both of you or just the ex. If neither of you are publicly funded, then usually you each pay half of the assesment fee (around £750).

cestlavielife Mon 22-Nov-10 11:40:47

tks MC. v helpful.

self funded and crippling.

to date he has either not turned up for hearings or been LIP.

not publicly funded - financial hearing shortly (seeking order to sell joint owned property) so am awaiting to see if he
a) turns up
b) does not turn up
c) presents reason to not turn up eg medical

he is under a penal notice to turn up...we shall see. moving on financial may make it easier if i have to put up the money for psych assessment.

will be interesting to also be assessed...

mumblechum Mon 22-Nov-10 11:53:29

TBH I really think you would benefit from spending a few hundred quid getting a family lawyer to look at the relevant docs (don't waste time on correspondence etc, just the court pleadings, Cafcass report, Orders etc) and, without going on record as acting for you, giving you some written guidance on exactly what you should be doing.

All good family lawyers are members of resolution Find a local one and ask if they do a free half hour. You can use that time to give them a brief precis, and leave the docs with them to give an opinion on/guidance.

Although they won't be going on record, they'll still need your ID, payment on account and for you to countersign their terms of business letter, so be prepared in advance for that.

cestlavielife Mon 22-Nov-10 12:25:58

i already have family lawyer/solicitor who has everything from pvs hearings - will see what happens next week at financial hearing and if/when he seeks contact...

or do you mean getting another view?

mumblechum Mon 22-Nov-10 12:30:03

No, sorry, just skim read your OP and thought you were unrepresented.

I'm not suggesting your lawyer isn't doing a good job, but certainly you should ask them about getting a psych assesment, ie whether in their view it would be helpful at this stage.

If your ex isn't pushing for contact, it may not be worth raising psych assesment unless/until he is.

cestlavielife Mon 22-Nov-10 12:56:16


i think that now is the time - i am sure he will ask for contact at some point and there's been far too many ups/downs in his behaviour - well even the ups ahve been downs, really - and denial eg he told judge at one hearing "i've never had a MH problem, i only stayed in the psych unit voluntarily because there was no B&B available". teh way he said it (he was "up") it sounded almost plausible...

i've given him chances to get over the separation, deal with it, get help, move forward - but there are clearly underlying issues preventing him doing this. might even help him? who knows.

but my main reason would be to know one way or other what the best level of contact is for DC in terms of their emotional and physical well being. they/I need to know what we dealing with here, in order to develop the tools to deal with it. the DC more than me... as they get older.

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