When I went to visit Emily on Tuesday last week, she was disinterested and standoffish. I can't say that I behaved much better. She couldn't wait for us to go and, I too, took no pleasure in being there.
Due to work commitments, our family therapy session had been cancelled, but the therapist was still on the unit at visiting time. One word I will use about the staff is commitment. It was 8pm and I knew she'd been there from around 9.30am..
After our meeting with Emily, our Family Therapist asked how our meeting had gone, she could sense from my response that it could have been better. Taking my husband and I into an office she asked more questions. She then shared with us some comments Emily had made in individual therapy the day before. She had said that we did not always feed her properly and that she didn't always have clean clothes.
My first reaction was anger. The Therapist made it clear that no one on the unit believed what Emily had said. They could all see that she was well fed and clean and tidy. That didn't stop my anger, but by the end of the meeting it had turned to sadness. I had always prided myself on the relationship I had with my daughter. We could talk openly about anything and even more important, we were both truthful and honest. This no longer applied and it was this that hurt the most. I was not used to a daughter who lied and could not be trusted.
Even so I sent her a message by text on the Wednesday, Halloween, to say I hope she enjoyed her party. I received no response.
A nurse called me at work on Thursday. Emily was coming home that day, being picked up by my parents at 4pm. The nurse explained that Emily was upset that I didn't believe her when she said things and that I didn't listen. The nurse was kind and accepted that I was in a difficult position. I drove home arguing with myself. I wanted to be childish, ignore her, be nasty, shout at her. I came to the conclusion that that was what she was after. That would give her a reason to feel persecuted and unloved and she was neither. The battle in my head continued with a voice saying over and over 'you are the adult she is the child'. By the time I arrived home I was ready to talk.
- Mum of 2, suffering my own mental health issues, I began to write this blog as a way to release feelings and emotions. At 13 my daughter was terribly bullied which has led to her having serious mental health problems of her own. She is now 16. I wanted to document our journey and hopefully be able to look back and see how far we have come.