Trying to keep on top of your own mental health is really vital in life.
I feel that it is really essential to try to keep a check on yourself whenever you have a child with additional needs.
It does completely take over on all of your thinking, planning, time and very quickly you can get very worn down.
You need to stop, breath and think about you.
How are you feeling?
– If you aren’t sure, talk to someone. A friend, partner, someone who understands. If you regularly feel low, that you can’t take much more contact your GP for a chat.
When is the last time you did something for you?
– Have you managed to have some time to yourself or with other adults to actually relax?
I don’t mean just tidying when the kids have gone to bed, having a coffee, I mean something properly for you. Make sure to visit your friends, get out of the house and go for a walk, go to the shops and only look at things for you, do something that you enjoy and try to make it a regular thing!
Are you just holding on, or are you standing up tall?
– Standing up tall? Fantastic! Though if you are just holding on, feel like you are at the edge, stretched too your limit, at the edge. Seek help. With kids with additional needs you never know what is around the corner and you don’t want it to be the thing to tip you over.
Your child/ren need you. More so than others, if you won’t fight to get them what they need, who will? GPs are very understanding and supportive. Don’t make an appointment for a few weeks down the line, take the emergency appointment and get seen that day. You need it.
Yes, you may have been here before and got back on your feet, and forgotten it for a while, but it will come back when you least expect it.
Please don’t feel embarrassed, scared, afraid, just make that phone call.
Your family and friends may tell you that it will all be ok and that you are ok, but you have to feel it too, and I’m sure if you are in this position you do not feel it.
Them shrugging off what you tell them, ignoring it, or just replying with the generic “you will be ok.” That is not enough.
Go to the doctor, talk it through with a professional and then tell your family and friends you are getting help and you would like their support.
Sometimes family and friends are so used to seeing your strong exterior, your fight, your smile and get up and go that they can’t see how much you really are struggling deep down.
You can do this.
Support is out there.
Don’t be fobbed off.
Your family need you.