Deb: I am a mental health advocate as a result of parenting a teen who struggled with suicidal thoughts and actions, self harm and an eating disorder. For 3 long years we battled with this depression that had taken over my girls will to live.
The journey was like a whirl wind of devastation, a heart breaking and all consuming path of destruction. Her journey soon became our journey. I cried buckets of tears felt lost and alone. My beautiful baby was at the mercy of this beast of burden. She was angry, hurting and so distant. For the longest time I felt like the enemy.
Desperate to find answers and to help my child. After 3 suicide attempts, multiple hospitalizations numerous self harm injuries (cutting) and endless sutures, my beautiful girl is now in recovery and has been safe for the past 9 months. This journey has been one of the hardest things I have ever been through. But we got there!
There is no quick fix, mental health is not about one size fits all. It just is what it is. It takes a lot of patience, unconditional love and support to endure such journeys and unless you have walked in those shoes its very hard to comprehend the impact mental health can have on those closest to the sufferer.
As a result for the past year I have started my own support group for New Zealand parents that are on a journey similar to ours. To encourage and support those that feel lost and alone, desperate and scared who need compassion, empathy and understanding on how hard it is to get through these troubling and frightening times. To date I support nearly 400 families, we have some great success stories and people no longer feel alone. This is a closed and confidential group where people share their worries and concerns with others who are going through the same thing.
Never give up and never give in. Things can and do get better.
Supporting parents and caregivers of teenagers who suffer from depression, anxiety. self harm and suicidal thoughts and actions (ideation).
Everything that is said in this group is confidential and I would ask that people using this group respect that. Any abuse or profanity will not be tolerated. This is a group for people to share and care and to help others through their journeys.