Source: Rise Magazine Facebook Page
(Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)
Those who are presented with the term post-traumatic stress disorder – or PTSD – will often think of shellshocked soldiers, traumatised by events they went through on the battlefield.
This is certainly a common cause of the condition and one that’s currently being acted out in Australian soap Home And Away.
However, it’s not just people who have been at war who suffer the condition.
Those who have been sexually abused, gone through domestic violence, experienced neglect as a child, had a near-death situation or just seen something they found terrifying can begin experiencing elements of PTSD.
Picture: Sophie Mutevelian/BBC
By Nushra Mansuri, professional officer at the British Association of Social Workers
Watching the harrowing BBC drama series ‘Three Girls’ hit a raw nerve for me. In the late nineties, I worked for a third sector organisation and supported young women and girls who were homeless or in a housing crisis – many of whom were fleeing child sexual exploitation. A lot of the work focused on advocating to children’s social care, housing providers, education, police, health and many other services on their behalf.
Director of the Baltimore City Department of Social Services tells you just about everything you need to know about child welfare and foster care in America
The adoption of their children can be life-altering for birth parents, but often they receive insufficient practical and emotional support
By Amanda Lodge
Adoption decisions are often made at a very vulnerable stage after giving birth. A recent report from Legal Action for Women also highlighted that mothers on low incomes, those with learning difficulties and teenage mums are particularly vulnerable to having their children adopted.
The voices of birth parents whose children are adopted can go unheard, however. In my case, as a young care leaver who hadn’t yet turned 18, there was seemingly little regard or compassion for what was the most difficult and selfless act I could have taken when trying to decide what was best for my baby.
It’s been a year since social services closed my case and I still feel shaken by what happened. I was accused of emotionally abusing my daughter. There was no evidence, just opinion and speculation and random quotes about how children whose parents have a mental health condition “could” be affected. Sarah had always been a confident girl who made friends easily but middle school was a shock. Right from the start she was bullied. I spent so much time making phone calls and trips to the school, without success, that it began to take a toll on my health as well. I visited the GP with symptoms of stress and anxiety. Worried about the impact of this on my daughter, I asked social services for help. In three years, we had five different social workers. Maybe I was unlucky but our experience with the first four was not positive. Chloe, the fifth, was different.
In November 2016 Par gave a presentation and Q & A session on Parents rights, advocacy and trauma awareness to 2nd year social work and social science students at Edinburgh University, which was much appreciated and very much valued by the students.
Protect the human: don’t stunt love
Maggie Mellon asks why we have children and what makes a parent. Drawing on her own experience of motherhood, she looks at how parents face very different situations when they bring a child into the world:
Over 25 years ago, at nearly midnight on 21 December 1989, I had my first child by caesarean section in the Whittington Hospital in north London. I was 36 years old, had a full-time job, nearly a year’s paid maternity leave to look forward to, a three-bedroom house with a garden and just as, if not more, important, a partner who was as happy as I was to become a parent.
Kids who are neglected may be better off remaining with their families with additional support than put into foster care.
May 29, 2013
We all make mistakes while parenting. We try to be a friend rather than a parent, or we are too strict when comfort is needed. We sometimes scold or hit when exasperation takes over, or we are negligent when depression creeps in. Imagine what our parenting would be like without resources to fall back on — like money, family, friends and connections — and what might be revealed if our lives were constantly scrutinized in public housing, in public hospitals, in public child care and at our child’s public school.
This is the situation for many low-income parents, often single mothers of color, whose children come to the attention of the child-welfare system. Granted, there are horrible situations of abuse, but those are relatively infrequent cases. A recent study in California of all children born there in 1999 found that by the age of 7, 19.8% of them had been reported to the state central registry. That is a strikingly high number, but research from 2011 shows that children nationwide are found to have been abused or neglected in only 18.5% of reported cases. A great majority of cases involve neglect, not abuse — for example by leaving a child home alone, not making sure a child attends school or not having adequate housing.