If I could turn back time….

It gets worse when your kid can’t bear to talk to you on the phone, it is too distressing for them. You are left with having to make do with staff updates. They feel generic and lack the depth of understanding of your kid that you need.

You have a feeling that you are being assessed as to level of your involvement in your kid’s mental state, how did you affect their well-being, did your actions or lack cause this? And if you have anything in your family background, death, disablement, divorce it feels this will (and is) seized on as the trigger for your kid’s emotional decline.

You feel like a peeled onion, exposed, raw with nowhere to hide and of course you are not the patient you will only be told what they think you need to know and what your kid wants them to tell you. From living cheek by jowl, there is now a barrier between you and your kid.

This is one of the lesser thought out delights of having an ill adolescent, on many legal levels you are the parent, you hold total financial responsibility for your kid, they can’t claim benefit, can’t get married, can’t legally smoke or drink, vote. However they can ensure that you as their parent know nothing about what they are doing when in hospital. The staff check with every call whether your kid will speak to you, whether they are happy for you to hear any snippet of information

This was not your experience but do feel that it is an anomaly that you are expected to take the responsibility but can be excluded from the information if strangers perceive that you are not appropriate.

You, therefore, feel the need to behave uber-appropriately at all times, you do not want to annoy these people in anyway because they are your direct line to your baby. You want to know the plan but don’t want to seem oppressive or intrusive you want to know their ideas and then get annoyed that they seem to be going down the same well-worn route as professionals in the community.

You are desperate and ridiculously grateful but are still wrestling with the sense of personal failure and to have a barrier between you and your kid is hellish. It compounds the feeling that you have messed up in epic fashion and that if you had been better, more assertive, more confrontational about things that your kid had difficulties with they might not have been in this position.

You would like to be like Cher in the Eighties movie you can’t remember the name of where a young Eric Stoltz is her son and has some condition that caused facial disfigurement and she takes on the whole world. In a full on bad ass, don’t mess with my baby, ninja mother kind of way.

Mind you she is also the member of a biker gang and leather is not a good look on you, also you might want to check the endless self-flagellation  and self-recrimination, take off the hair shirt while you’re at it, as that is not a good look either and frankly unless you have suddenly developed a latent talent for time travel you cannot go back and change a thing. You are where you are and moving forward is really the only thing that matters.

Also, it was a movie and they are largely bollocks when it comes to true to life stories.



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