When I signed up for FDAC I was a broken person, but I didn’t realise it. I’d had trauma from my teens – mental health problems, domestic abuse, sexual harassment – and I’d become an addict. I was very angry with FDAC, and with social services, with the world, with myself. It was tough love at the start and I hated them all. But I was treated as a human being, especially by the judge, and that was the start of my journey. It’s the healing, the mental ability to change patterns, that you get from FDAC. FDAC opened the door to that, and I got my daughter back.
My story is that I’d just had a son and he’d been taken into care straight away. When I was offered a plan at court I went along with it. It wasn’t like the experience I’d had of the criminal court. I was given the opportunity to speak, and to build relationships – with the judge, and the professionals, and the social workers. I got to know everyone and I knew what was happening. It felt strange to know about the plan all the time. I was offered treatment and from there went into detox and then a day programme, doing all the regular stuff. It was absolutely fantastic. It makes me want to cry thinking back to it. I was reunited with my son. The social worker brought him home and I picked him up in my arms. But it could have been so different.