As part of our 20K in April challenge, we’re sharing stories, with permission, from our community every day from 13th to 30th April. All are true accounts of the reality of a random group of parents in our community. Some are professionals, others full time carers. Some have been battling for years, others are new to this dance of accessing services, navigating school, coping with shame, guilt and judgment, and keeping their child alive while trying to work, look after their other children, have a relationship, have a life. All of them deserve, like their children, to be heard and helped.
I found PMH ( it was called something else then) when there were about 500 members and my daughter broke down at the the start of her year 10 exams. The pressure had been mounting all year in school, her best friend had moved away and she was developing social anxiety. Joining the group showed me that I wasn’t alone. I believe that it saved my daughter because it gave me the strength and confidence to support her wholeheartedly and be there to catch her. The next year was tough with it being her gcse year. Actually, around the exams it was bloody awful- horrific and I now call myself a gcse survivor!! We made it and she produced outstanding grades but at a cost to her mental health. The stress continued to build over the next two years and her year 13 year was another year from hell for us. She was relieved that the exams were cancelled in the summer of 2020 but left school with 4 A grade A levels and the feeling that she still wasn’t good enough. She still feels this way. She is still work in progress but we’ll get there. Now that I know better, I do better.
I can’t adequately express just how wonderfully supportive and encouraging PMH is. I’ve made friends for life and I can’t thank Suzanne and the rest of the hard working volunteers enough. I know without a shadow of a doubt that lives have been saved because of PMH and the support and love that has been wrapped around members. Thank you forever.
If you would like to donate to the 20K challenge, you can do so here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/suzanne-alderson
If you’d like to sign up and fundraise as part of the 20K Challenge in April for Parenting Mental Health, you can do so here: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/PMH-Sphinx20KChallenge