Daily Mail Article on Valium: “Drug that steals women’s lives: It’s more addictive than heroin, with horrifying side-effects. So why, 50 years after its launch, is Valium still given to millions?”

Please note that the founder of this website, Baylissa Frederick (Bliss Johns), who was interviewed by freelance journalist, Lois Rogers, was misquoted throughout this article and was also not prescribed Valium for her dystonic tic. Her life is by no means ‘blighted’ as stated in the article and she is known to be a happy, positive and content person.


“I didn’t realise the tranquilisers were causing these problems and thought I needed more of the drug to help me, but the doctor said I was on too high a dose for him to increase it any further.”  This could not be further removed from the truth. Ms Frederick did not say this or anything close. She was not on a high dose of “Valium”, did not think she needed more and her doctor did not say she was on too high a dose for him to increase it any further. To the contrary, she was on a low dose of Rivotril (.5 mg x 3), with the highest dose being 20mg. This was totally fabricated.

“I immediately consulted my doctor, who said I’d have to stay on it for the rest of my life because the withdrawal symptoms would be so bad.’  Ms Frederick did not say this. When she consulted her doctor he prescribed the medication required to have a safe taper off and certainly did not tell her she had to stay on it for the rest of her life. He also did not mention a single word about symptoms.

“I didn’t get any help from the doctor, and the whole thing took about a year. The seizures got worse, though, and now I don’t know if I will suffer them for the rest of my life.” Again, this is totally made up. She said no such thing. It was the doctor who prescribed the medication required for her taper.

Her neurologist has confirmed that her enduring health problems are caused by her taking Valium for nearly a decade, but says there is nothing that can be done to help her. Another made up statement. She said a neurologist confirmed that the worsening of the dystonia during acute withdrawal was a withdrawal effect. This has now subsided and is no longer relevant. All neurologists consulted before, during and after her withdrawal will confirm that any neuroolgical withdrawal effects are now gone and her condition is back to what is was prior to taking the drug.

“I was lucky,’ she says. ‘Although I have long-term problems, what happened to me is nothing compared to what others have gone through.” What Ms Frederick actually said, something she says in all her interviews is that although she had a bad withdrawal, there are people who go through a lot worse.”

Permanent Symptoms:

The condition referred to in the article as being permanent withdrawal damage is in fact a form of dystonia which she has had since childhood and which was explained to Lois Rogers, the freelance journalist who interviewed her. In her notes Ms Rogers states that “She still has the ORIGINAL condition.” However, by the time the article was published, Ms Frederick’s statement was distorted to make it appear that “Valium” caused her pre-existing dystonia.

Ms Frederick has recovered from her benzodiazepine withdrawal experience and her condition today is as it was prior to taking the benzodiazepine. This fact is confirmed in writing by a report from the neurologist who was consulted about the dystonic tic in 1998. It describes the nature of the involuntary movements and the frequency at that time and proves that her current condition is as it was prior to her taking the medication.

We apologise to anyone who may have been distressed by the inaccurate account given in The Mail’s article. The true account of her story can be found in her books, “Recovery & Renewal” and “With Hope in My Heart” (by Bliss Johns - her pseudonym)  which are available at Amazon and other book stores, and in other online articles, on this website and at her You Tube channel.

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The following links are to articles either written by Baylissa Frederick or to interviews given. Please feel free to share them.

Thank you.

“The Withdrawal-Aware Doctor” - Mad in America

“Benzodiazepine and Antidepressant Withdrawal Support for Caregivers” - Mad in America

“Recovery of an Unwitting Addict” - Mad in America

“Prescribed Addiction” -  Addictions Today magazine

“Doctors Sued for Creating Valium Addicts” - The Independent Newspaper  (Excerpt from interview with Baylissa Frederick included)

“Benzo Nation” - British Medical Association News (Includes interviews with Lord Sandwich and Baylissa Frederick)

“How to Support Someone in Benzodiazepine Withdrawal”Ezine Article

“What Every Doctor Should Know”Ezine Article

“Tips for Coping Successfully” - Ezine Article

“Michael Jackson’s Tolerance” Ezine Article