Read an Extract From the Book’s Introduction
Your child wasn’t born with a manual. Come to think of it, neither were you. Didn’t you wish that your parents understood you more? Even back then, everything was such a struggle! And these days, it’s so much more complex to raise a child than ever before.
Your child has to deal with situations and issues you may not have experienced yourself growing up: the strong pressure to achieve in school; being a victim or perpetrator of bullying; blended families; problems within peer groups at school; changing definitions of sexuality and confusion around them; the impact of cultural and social norms, including the increasing pressure from social media.
Your child is justifiably overwhelmed.
You know mental health challenges are everywhere. You try not to worry too much, but still … you think about how you and family members have suffered, and about the fact that you have a close relative suffering from schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression … maybe someone in your family has even committed suicide. The thing is, no one has accepted that there’s a problem, and everyone has carried on as if everything is ok, it’s ok to hide whatever you’re dealing with from everyone else. No one in your family has spoken about what happened, leaving you to deal with the bereavement and illness in your family alone. You’ve suffered through your own negative thoughts and depressive feelings about your family, about yourself, even some post-natal depression.
Sure, things are slightly better now; your depression is mostly under control, but it’s still easily triggered if you eat a lot of fast food and sweets, or drink a little too much alcohol.