My Experience | A Parent’s Perspective

My Experience | A Parent’s Perspective

My Story:

A Parent’s Perspective

It’s Saturday morning, not just any Saturday morning but World Mental Health day. I sit here with a coffee and an inspirational chocolate biscuit (my excuse anyway) to sit and try to fathom the changes within my family over the last ten years.

It seems such a long time ago, I had a happy family or so I thought, and mental health was something that happened to other people.

It came as a slow realisation as I watched my happy, carefree, beautiful daughter change, and not just physically as the eating disorder took hold.

I was always brought up as a child with “what happens in the family is private, you don’t talk about it, you just get on with it” which works for some things, but others such as this you are totally out of your depth, you hope it’s just a phase and they will snap out of it. When they don’t, what’s plan B?

There are no rehearsals for parenthood and I still feel like I have a large L plate on my back, especially as we now have the massive negative impact that Social Media can create. I never had anything like that to deal with as an adolescent. Having once tried to transfer my data from a Samsung to an iPhone (an event when recalled can still produce a cold, shuddering sweat!) I realise that the whole concept is beyond me.

The youth of today are bombarded with images of the perfect person, the perfect life, the perfect job and if you don’t measure up you’re worthless.

Any parent who has arrived at work unknowingly sporting baby sick down their back, hair dishevelled, make up on one eye only and if you’re mornings gone well matching shoes can only stare at the manicured celebrities with two matching designer dressed children paraded out for the paparazzi.

Where do you get help, support, ideas? Your GP? An already overwhelmed NHS? A safe space to compare experiences is a big start, there are others like me out there who have come through this and their help and experience is a massive light at the end of the tunnel.

Well done VocalMinds! Watch this space.