Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

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Parent Peer Supporter

Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

We had a win! 

As some of you know my daughter (15) was to go back into an Adolescent Mental Health unit 2 weeks ago.

We were given a weeks reprieve to attend an event that she'd been looking forward to for months and on arriving home I had had some time to think.

I had realised that when she sees her psychiatrist & case worker she is at her worst. And that is the only side they see of her.

As she is 15 I don't have access to her reports and don't know what is discussed in her sessions. I don't see that side of her.

So I decided that I needed to sit with them and share my side. Tell them what they don't see.

Once I had told them about how she has more light in her day, how she is looking forward to things coming in the future, how she did a full day at school for the first time since November, how she is more engaged... if they still believed that she needs admission then I know that she REALLY needs admission. 

I wanted to tell them that if she goes in now she'll miss the opportunity of work experience (here's hoping she can manage it) which may open her up to new opportunities she'd not known before. That it might lead to a pathway she could use if school is too much. 

And I have been given 5 weeks. Yes!!!

So.. I have begun a diary .. I am documenting her days. The wins & the losses.

The losses may help me see triggers or a timeline of where things go wrong.

And the wins will show her team where things are right.

So far it's a fantastic read Smiley Happy Smiley Wink and even though I know that life is not all roses I feel that using these strategies I just might keep her out of hospital by giving them a look into her everyday.

Fingers crossed  

Super frequent scribe

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

It sounds like you have had a wonderful 'light bulb' moment, keeping a diary of her wins and losses @LovingThruBlue, and your love for your daughter to do this for her is truly eminent.

Good luck, and keep us updated how it goes.

 

Super contributor

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

That's incredible news @LovingThruBlue !! What a win for you and your daughter. You must be thrilled!! Cat Very Happy

Well done for keeping going with what felt right to you. I know your instincts were very strong around the experiences your daughter has when she stays at the hospital and it's wonderful you were able to get the doctors to see it from your perspective. Did you feel like a team working together for the best outcome possible for your daughter?

Will she give work a go in the 5 weeks or are you holding off?

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

Thank you Smiley Happy @Ngaio-RO & @Big_Crab

A lot of the focus for putting off admission was based around the huge opportunity her year 10 work experience may give her if she can manage it (and I think she will).

In the mean time she is showing many positives in her days and I appreciate that unless I share that with them they may not know it. I truly believe that there has been improvement and even if she can just manage that work experience and a few more full days at school that may be enough to convince them that she is actually improving and doesn't need admission or a change in meds. 

I know there'll be bad days in that diary - she has severe depression so that will happen - but the positives need only show improvement.

 

Super contributor

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

That's absolutely true @LovingThruBlue You don't need to 'cure' her in the next 5 weeks. I imagine they're just wanting to see signs of her being 'in recovery' or exactly as you say "improving". Well done!! I'm really happy for both of you.

 

Will you be popping back around 8 PM for a chat?

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

Sorry I missed the chat. We were out with friends.

 

At this stage the team don't know that I'm keeping the diary. But they will tomorrow Smiley Happy 

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

That's all fabulous news @LovingThruBlue. Fingers crossed that work experience goes well as that may well give her a boost of confidence and continue her hopes for the future. 

 

Good on you too for talking with the team. It amazed me that you weren't being invited to be part of her counselling, as naturally they cannot get the whole picture of what's happening without your input. As parents we do need to follow our gut feeling and speak out for our kids. 

 

I also keep a 'mood diary', keeping track of her moods, meds taken, and menstrual cycle, so we can see if there's a pattern. Which there is, so we are prepared for her being less tolerant, more short fused, more tired - or more manic, exciteable, or off the air. I'm also mindful of what's been happening, so I can recognise a possible trigger, or difficult situation. 

 

I hope things keep improving for you both. As you say, there will still be bad days, but that's all they are. Each day is a new day, and if they see that your daughter is making forward progress, I hope hospital is taken off the table at this stage. 

 

Well done Mum!

 

Highlighted
Parent Peer Supporter

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

Update Smiley Happy The work experience went well. The following week at her psychiatrist apt I was brought in at the end and again stressed that I realise they see her at her worst and know things I don't know ...but... " this is what I see" and I am keen to not change anything just yet as I see little improvements.

He is happy to leave her meds as they are for a few months and that means no hospital admission at this stage - win! Smiley Very Happy   

and yes @taokat - because her breakdown occurred after she had turned 15 I have never at any point had access to her medical records or what she reveals in her sessions. I even rang her GP to get blood test results months ago and was told she had to call back after school because she is "15 & over". The tests were fine so why couldn't they just tell me that?!  Frustrating. 

Prolific scribe

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

I am so happy for both of you. They always surprise me with something that is important.

We tend to think Oh my god and get ourselves wound up to cope with the aftermath.

I find with T2 especially by the end of her week she is so exhausted from being so involved in something that really means so much to her.

 

With the MH stuff I have both of my daughters med files. They sign them for me and I either send to the company involved or FYI. The latest report was 48 pages and I received that last year for my teen. Mind you I howled when reading it , once was enough. T1 was so distraught. I have applied for other families of all ages so I know you can get them. Must need a reason but I can think of many in your situation. The paperwork is horrendous.

 

Those tiny (minute) moments can be so hard to notice. I ended up putting little notes on my calendar and taping T2 in action. The notes stopped when T2 learnt to read..

Parent Peer Supporter

Re: Update and and advice if your child is under Mental Health care...

Hey @LovingThruBlue, (Peer Supporter in Training! Smiley LOL) that's awesome news re the work experience and the lack of need for hospitalisation for your daughter. Hopefully the work experience has helped give your daughter a bit of direction for her near future. 

 

I'm just amazed that you cannot even get test results from the GP. The whole thing wouldn't sit well with me either and I can understand your frustration. My daughter gets to decide what, if anything is shared with her father, but I have full custody and he's only met her once which didn't go well. Being the parent your daughter is raised by and lives with, it just seems like an incomplete care package without you being kept in the loop.

 

@Lily17's suggestion may be a good option for you? It must be so hard to read Lily17, my heart goes out to you. And to your T2. We live it daily, but seeing it in writing, I think for me, made it really real.

 

Do either you or LovingThruBlue have counsellors to help you get through? I used one, separate to my therapist for my mental health stuff, for a couple of years. It was a place for me to unload, learn, and have some parenting support. But then again, we didn't have the parent forum then...