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Not coping and noone is listening (possible upsetting/trigger post)(31 Posts)
First of all let me just say that parts of this post may/will be upsetting to some people so an advanced warning, I don’t know what trigger warning means on some of the other posts but maybe this is it
Can someone give me some advice please – if you are a social worker, health visitor, other health professional, as to what I should do. I don’t know whether to call CAMHS, the HV, GP, someone else, no one. I feel like I should call someone but don’t know how to get them to listen or do anything to help me as they haven’t so far
I live on my own with a 3 year old daughter. I’ve been experiencing moments of extreme irritability/anger that seem to come out of nowhere, or there will be a very very small trigger for them. The anger fills my whole body, it feels like I’m being flooded with it. I clench my teeth, swear using the nastiest words you can think of. So far I’ve refrained from hurting my daughter but she sees this and gets very upset, I believe it is changing her mood, how she is, from a lovely settled and intelligent child into an unsettled and scared one.
There are lots of ‘symptoms’ if that is what you call it. Last night my daughter got into bed with me in the middle of the night, woke me up just after I had got to sleep and I felt the rage, and it’s all I can do not to hurt her. I don’t say that without knowing how bad it sounds, but in these moments thoughts of hurting her badly flash through my mind.
In the end I pushed her roughly and punched the bed next to her and knew I had to remove myself, so went to sleep on the sofa.
I don’t want to hurt my daughter, I love her to bits, but in these moments I feel so, so angry. I’m scared that at some point I won’t have enough self control/restraint, and will end up hurting her. I feel like I’m already damaging her by her seeing and experiencing what she already does. I feel like I’m a monster, there is something wrong with me, with my brain. Why is this happening?
This morning I can still feel it, it is like I have a headache but it’s more like pressure in my head, its constant and whereas before it has gone away and come back, its more like its there permanently. My chest is really tight and it’s a bit hard to breathe. It’s like I’m spaced out, but I’m not and can write this out.
I’m not on any medication of any kind.
One thing to say is I think sugar might have something to do with it, I went sugar free then binged really compulsively over the weekend. I’ve tried running to work it all back out of my system but that probably takes a few days. Can sugar/sugar withdrawal affect someone so dramatically?
I have already asked for help, over and over, from GPs, HVs, CAMHS. CAMHS finally listened to me recently when I saw them (the others just fobbed me off and ignored me, so many times). They suggested a number of things might be wrong – borderline PD, or bipolar, for example. But they haven’t done a full diagnosis. They just gave an appointment in a few months time and I was left on my own again. I did tell them that I was experiencing these periods of anger/rage and was upset by the thoughts of hurting my daughter. It didn’t seem to make a difference in how quickly they would be able to do anything for me.
What do I do? If I call CAMHS and they cannot see me sooner, can I call social services in my county and ask for my help? Can I ask them to take my daughter and look after her so there is no chance of me hurting her? I feel powerless because I have described myself to so many health professionals and got nowhere. Maybe because I probably come across when I see them as well spoken and presented? – but if they saw the way I am at home, the way I am describing to them, I don’t think they would think I was fit to be a mother.
Sorry for the long post.
Sorry you are feeling this way. I think referring yourself to social care might help you get a proper assessment from adult mental health. Tell them you pushed her and were worried by how you felt. Ring the local adult social care duty desk number. Or you could ask your GP to do a social care referral because you are not coping. Also, are there any family centres near you? Finally, what about contacting one of the charities like MIND and RETHINK who provide advocacy services - if someone could come to an appointment with you they could help you get the help you need. Hope this helps.
Important - make yourself a plan of what you will do if you don't think you can keep yourself or your daughter safe 1. Who will you ring - write down a friends number, or NHS 111. 2. Where will you go - its ok to go to a minor injuries unit, A&E if things get this bad. 3. Crisis management - if its bad, but not quite this bad, where can you put your daughter so she is safe, while you go outside and scream or something.
Thank you Seconds - I did not know I could ask the GP to do that, when I told them how I felt (several times) before they wouldn't even refer me to CAMHS, it took about 10 visits to the GP before they did, and they have only ever made me feel like I'm wasting their time. I find that distressing in itself, when I'm telling them I'm at risk of hurting my daughter and they are more or less saying don't be ridiculous and you're fine.
I know services are overloaded, and I don't want to get my hopes up that I might get help then be fobbed off again. It might help if someone could come with me and help insist that something happens, if advocacy services can do that.
I did try calling the Samaritans once, a few months ago. Spoke to an older lady who just talked at me and over me and gave all sorts of advice that I knew was wrong. Experiences like this have put me off getting help or at least I feel like I've tried all the people who should be listening like the GP and HV, and they haven't.
Sometimes I put myself in my room and sit with my weight against the door to stop my daughter coming in while I try to do deep breathing. But I also get upset then because she tries to follow me, she wants to be on top of me and in my face all the time and more so when she can sense I am upset, and tries to bang the door down and cries. So I feel like I'm making her distressed then too, and cannot win. Like I think she's coming into my bed during the night because she wants to be close to me, partly because she's upset by seeing how I was the night before. But at that point I really do feel like I want to push her away or run away from her, like it's suffocating. I know it's not her fault.
You might have more luck with the crisis team. If you search your area the number will be there.
Fallon maybe it is not CAMHS then, it is the adult mental health services - psychologists - for my area. Sorry I don't really understand how the system works, maybe that is part of the problem.
Crisis Teams are for people in acute mental health crisis. I'd talk to social services if I were you.
I just looked up the crisis team for my area and it looks like it is the place where I went for my mental health services referral, in a nearby town.
I've never been in touch with social services before.
I suffered huge rage when my children were small. There were historical issues which contributed. I had never learned to handle my own emotions.
I was fortunate to have quite a long period of therapy which helped me enormously, radically changed how I see the world and helped me untangle some unhelpful attitudes I had.
In my area, if you ring a specific number and self refer for a mental health referral they do a telephone assessment. They then allocate you a treatment according to need- self help group, six week counselling, etc. Ask GPs receptionist if there is a self referral system in your area, or look online.
Thank you pickle. Yes there are historical issues in my case too, throughout my childhood. But at the same time I don't want to use them as an excuse, this is my fault not anyone else's, and what I'm doing isn't ok.
I think the service I went to intends to send me for some sort of therapy, and says I need something more complex than CBT or the light touch stuff, something over a longer period. But they don't offer anything for the time being, when I'm saying that I'm going home where I'm potentially a risk to my child. At the very least she might remember some of what she has seen, the way I am when she is older, and her nursery have noticed she is getting more upset and clingy.
I'm hesitant to go back to the GPs, they made me feel so bad even for turning up there all the other times.
It sounds like therapy is what you need so there isn't much that MH services could offer in the meantime. Social services may be able to offer more.
Fallon what sort of thing do social services do once you call them? Sorry for asking silly questions, it just makes me anxious to think of calling them and would help to know what might happen.
Road just what the name says deals with MH crisis. I would class fearing lack of control as one personally.
They are linked to the MH team (at least in my area) and can get medication or counselling services sorted faster then your GP's.
There whole aim is to treat you at home. I'm sorry your feeling so bad
One thing I will suggest is have you any family that could take your DD whilst you get sorted out?
My parents have had my DD's when I've been at breaking point in the past and having some time alone to get myself sorted out has been a godsend.
Thank you Unborn.
In a way it does feel like I am in some sort of crisis mode, or at least I was last night, when I felt like I couldn't even be in the same room as my daughter or I might hurt her, even though she was doing nothing wrong and I didn't/don't understand why this is happening. But I don't want to exaggerate, and also doubt myself - for example, if I'm not in my right mind am I seeing the situation for what it is, or being over dramatic, should I wait a few hours, or days, or is it even worse than I think? I don't trust myself to know.
There really isn't anyone who can take DD. She is in nursery, a lovely nursery and probably the safest place for her, much safer than with her mummy right now. I don't really have any friends, and 1 family member nearby but they have MH issues themselves so can't look after DD and I couldn't tell them anything. I think part of what I'm experiencing may be long term stress from coping on my own, but again that's no excuse.
I've begged services including HVs for some kind of support in the past few years, in fact HVs did promise they would find something last year then after promising a few times just stopped coming round or contacting me. I have no idea why, but this is why I don't really trust that services will be responsive even when I am really honest with them about what is going on.
If you've already told MH services and your GP about this (your posts say you have) and the situation is the same, I don't think the Crisis team would see you as it won't be considered a crisis.
Social services would come and meet you and see if they could put anything in place to help you better manage your anger.
The crises team have different criteria for what constitutes a crisis then other services.
Even MH specific ones.
I think it's worth asking them. I know services differ area to area but I've always had good experiences.
Thinking you may be a danger to yourself or others (i.e. your DD) fits the criteria.
When I was ill a few years ago children's services funded some extra hours at nursery for DD2 to give me some respite.
You wouldn't be seen by the crisis team where I live but you could try if you want to.
YY social services can help get extra funded nursery hours among other things.
Thank you. Maybe I can try the crisis team to start with and if they can't help then social services.
It's overnight that is the hardest, and that's when there is no support at all, nursery is not open, and whereas in the day time if I find myself getting tense I would usually get out of the house, that's not so possible at night. Though I have considered putting DD in her car seat and just driving round, because driving does tend to help me calm down - something about the mechanics of driving helps. It might confuse DD but better than distressing her. Haven't tried it yet.
Fallon thank you I did not know social services could get extra hours. I've never really had any time without DD and feel trapped sometimes, that might help, I could go for long walks or something.
What is a mental health crisis?
A mental health crisis is when you feel your mental health is at breaking point. For example, you might be experiencing:
•suicidal feelings or self-harming behaviour
•extreme anxiety or panic attacks
•psychotic episodes (such as delusions, hallucinations, paranoia or hearing voices)
•hypomania or mania
•other behaviour that feels out of control, and is likely to endanger yourself or others
You may have already been diagnosed with a mental health problem, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or depression, or you might be going through your first episode of a diagnosable mental health problem. Even if what you're going through isn't related to a specific diagnosis, experiencing emotions or behaviours that are painful or hard to manage can still make you feel like you're in crisis. When you're feeling like this, you may need to access crisis services to help you resolve the situation, or to support you until it has passed
I don't know about the ins and outs of various agencies but I just wanted to say I can relate to where you are and how you feel. I have a 3 yr old DD and a baby and have been struggling with a level of rage for a while. Im not on my own so it's not the same, but i get infuriated out of nowhere and scare my daughter, and myself. It's hard to cope because it's happening before I even know it. It feels related to unresolved issues with how I was parented, though I had a fairly unremarkable upbringing.
I don't think you sound an unfit mother - you are trying your best and have raised it many times. If you were truly unfit you wouldn't be trying to improve it.
Also, you mention sugar and it could just be coincidence, but I feel much more out of control if I have eaten and / or am withdrawing from sugar. I have long term eating battles and my ability to be calm is all bound up with that. Sorry if that's not relevant to you.
Finally, thank you for posting. I've been in a dark place with it the last week and it helps to know I'm not alone and to write this out.
That's from the guidelines page. I never realised the discrepancies in MH care till I read other posters experiences.
Some GP's just aren't that knowledgeable on MH. I'm not criticising at all. I work in health care myself and while I'm trained basically on everything from dementia to Palliative I'm not an expert on any particular illness.
Unless a GP has come over from a MH specific role they are not going to have the same level of knowledge as a psychiatrist.
Unborn - OP would not be seen by the Crisis team where I live. She would not meet the criteria. But I can't speak for all areas, just preparing her for the fact they might not offer anything if she tries.
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