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Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

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Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

Hi all, just wanting to connect with anyone else out there who is parenting teens who have experienced trauma. It adds a whole new dimension.

Or does anyone know of another site/ forum that is more appropriate?

We have only been aware of the trauma for almost two years and have professional help, but at times I feel I would love to talk to real people who are going through similar things.

I know we are not alone!

Regards 

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Re: Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

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Hi @Meemoo, this is such a great idea - thanks for sharing and putting this out there. A lot of people find talking to others in similar situations really helpful. This type of support can be vital for parents who may really benefit from the tools and strategies that other parents have used. There is a service called the Australian Childhood Foundation which may be able to provide a different type of assistance than the professional help you already receive.


Other parents that have used trauma in their responses/thread titles can be found here. You can enter any keywords in the search bar above to find related threads and articles. Trauma is quite a broad label and so it may help to be more specific when trying to use the search bar - some parents may not have included 'trauma' in their post.

 

I hope this helps Smiley Happy

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Re: Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

Thanks so much for the links to other pages.

I am talking about sexual abuse within my family. It was disclosed about 18months ago by one of my children, but affects all three, and we have been on the roller coaster since.

It has affected all aspects of our lives and pushed relationships to the limit.

We are working hard to keep our family together, there is so much work to do and at times I feel I’m the only one working at it. Juggling everything.

We have not told anyone, and this is quite isolating but I don’t feel there is any another alternative as this is such a big “taboo” topic. I don’t want to deal with others prejudices, negativity or blame.

One child is outwardly displaying her pain in rebellious behaviour ,suicidation, self harming, smoking, skipping school ect making boundaries really difficult to enforce.
The other child has social anxiety and is internalizing. She uses technology to zone out.
The eldest child is the perpetrator so is dealing with many other things.......

We have found good help for the two abused, but no-one seems to want to help the perpetrator. I find this astonishing- why just deal with victims and not help those at fault? Not proactive at all.

Anyone else out there in similar situation?
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Re: Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

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Hey @Meemoo 

 

We can only imagine how stressed you are, especially if you feel like you’re the only one trying to keep the family together.

 

Are your children who were abused safe from the perpetrator now?

 

We’re really glad you reached out. It’s important to know you are not alone. Unfortunately, working in the community sector we come across situations like this quite regularly. It’s really courageous to create a thread about this. We’re sure it’s one that other parents who are too scared to talk about themselves will benefit from.

 

While we do encourage conversations like this, we as an organization are mandatory reporters and have duty of care requirements, which is why we might ask you certain questions such as whether your children are safe right now.

 

I also need to ask how old your children are.

 

As written in our community guidelines which are linked here, if we believe someone is at risk of harm then we may need to escalate to the relevant authorities. If you're two children who were abused are still under 18, then we may even have to report past abuse. We want you to understand this so that you can make informed choices about what you share online with us at ReachOut.

 

We know reading this post may come across as intimidating and that is not our intention. We really are glad you are speaking about it and we do not want you to feel judged by these questions in any way. Unfortunately it’s a juggling act between our legal requirements and supporting people who are going through tough situations.

 

Lastly, I know what you mean in terms of finding support for perpetrators. It can be hard. If you're looking for mental health support then I'd recommend you search forensic psychologists in your area. Or clinical psychologist who do forensic-type work. You can search psychologists in your area by going on the Australian Psychological Society website - I have linked the "find a psychologist" page  here. Click "search by issue" and then "legal" and then the rest is fairly self-explanatory. Let us know how you go. 

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Re: Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

Thanks, and yes all are safe now and we have been down child services/ protection/ care first/ CASA road.
I understand your concern and legal implications but family support not alienation is most important here.
It is not parent “fault”, genetic, negligence, socioeconomic, uneducated ect.
Community Manager

Re: Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

Hi @Meemoo ,

 

Thanks for your reply, and for confirming that all of your kids are safe now. We appreciate that this must be an incredibly difficult situation to navigate as a family, and hope that you're able to find additional support here. You are clearly a dedicated parent who is doing a lot to surround your children with support services, which will be a hugely protective factor for them as they work through this trauma.

 

You mention you've had involvement with child protection, I'm just wondering if child services were able to offer any support services for your eldest child? 

 

I understand that it can be difficult to find appropriate professional supports for people who've been the perpetrators of abuse, and I agree with you that it's incredibly important.  Your local Child and Adolescent Mental Health services (CAMHS) may be a good place to look for additional supports, they have multidisciplinary teams including clinical psychologists and psychiatrists and you can self-refer. 

 

Thank you for having the courage to share your experiences here, hopefully if there are other community members who've walked a similar path they can offer their advice and support to you, and your family. 

 

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Re: Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

When a child turns 18 they are no longer able to access these services. There are specialist services for 'problem sexual behaviour' but only for those under the age of 18. Again I find this astonishing. 

 

We try to protect our children/ ourselves/ the community, and it is always a big deal when someone is attacked..........but what are we doing to prevent this? Certainly not addressing problem behaviour. 

 

Anyway, I'm not going to change the world or society or government spending. 

 

I just want to reach out to others who may have experienced similar situation within their family. 

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Community Manager

Re: Reaching out to other parents of children with complex trauma

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Hi @Meemoo , 

 

I hear your frustration about service availability for cases like your child's once they are over 18.  I know some psychologists do specialise in complex trauma and abuse, but you're right- there can definitely be barriers to accessing appropriate services.

 

Hopefully this post will reach other parents in similar situations, because I know that you're absolutely not alone in what you and your family have experienced - hopefully other parents will feel comfortable connecting with you here. 

 

A lot of services in this space over the age of 18 seem to be geared towards people who have been in contact with the courts/ have been sentenced for offences, but I did come across this service which I just thought I would share in case it's useful at all, they run a range of programs aimed at rehabilitation of people who have offended, or believe they could offend, against children. Their website has  a lot of information about their approach and different programs they offer, so I'm just linking it here in case you or anyone else reading may find it helpful http://pastoralcounselling.org/sex-offender-treatment/

 

Please keep us updated on how your family is progressing, you sound like an amazing parent and I really commend your strength in sharing your story with us here.