"No ongoing support."
About: Lanarkshire Community Services / Adult Mental Health Services Lanarkshire Community Services Adult Mental Health Services NHS 24 / Breathing Space (Phoneline) NHS 24 Breathing Space (Phoneline) Scottish Ambulance Service / Emergency Ambulance Scottish Ambulance Service Emergency Ambulance EH12 9EB University Hospital Wishaw / Adult Mental Health University Hospital Wishaw Adult Mental Health ML2 0DP
Posted by MissG19 (as ),
Several weeks ago my partner took an overdose. I discovered this at 5.30am. The ambulance came really quickly and the crew were really calm and efficient. I had 2 of my children in the house - both older teenagers. It was hugely distressing for them.
We followed the ambulance to Wishaw General. My partner was admitted to the Ambulatory Care ward later that day (a Saturday). My partner was seen by the CPN prior to discharge but then they decided to keep her in overnight for further IV treatment.
The care and treatment in hospital was good except for conflicting feedback about my partner's medical status. My partner does have a significant mental health condition and has had input from the local Crisis MH team before.
There has never been any offer of sustained support - of course self management is key - but trying to do this without a consistent (ie same people to be able to build some kind of trusting relationship within which to do this) supportive contact or team is pretty difficult. So when this happened we were all in crisis not knowing where to turn.
At no point did the CPN (or any other staff) ask if I was ok? Or if the kids were ok. Despite them being in obvious upset. My partner had a phone call the day after discharge (Monday) and an appointment on the Wednesday of that week. She has had one other appointment and been told that she is discharged. The issues that led to the overdose have not been addressed.
There is no ongoing support. I asked my partner to ask what support there might be for family members - partner, children etc. She was told that there was nothing on offer and we would need to find our own support. They didn't offer any info/advice. We have been left floundering- struggling to come to terms with what happened. Struggling to deal with the impact. And no support is available. Well, we could go to our GP, but they’re pretty stretched and I’m not convinced they would have anything to offer given my partners experience to date.
I know that the government want to put mental health on the same footing as physical health. And that the Carers Act means there is a duty to look at carers needs. I know this specifically relates to social care - but are we not supposed to be all joining up (integrating)? And putting people at the heart of everything? I feel I don't know how to cope. And have nowhere to turn - I phoned Breathing Space which was a helpful ‘out’ for my feelings. But there is nothing for carers or families - the local Carers Centre did give us some information a few years back to use talk to the children about their Mum's mental health. That was good. But there is a dearth of family support. I am extremely disappointed. Thankfully I do have friends I can talk with. And the kids and I have talked it through again & again - helpful for them. But we needed (and need) help as a family. And there is nothing there.