Need virtual hugs, Dd 15 in complete breakdown again(14 Posts)
I've posted before about Dd who struggles with depression, anxiety and PTSD following the suicide of her boyfriend. She was considered for inpatient care, hadn't been at school for six weeks, all really bad. She started in sertraline about 4 weeks ago and it has made a huge difference, this week we got her back to school.
She has an art exam tomorrow which counts for 20%. School have Benn fantastic helping her do the coursework towards it but she has done very little despite me reminding her and offering to help. Of course now today she is mega stressed and says she won't go to school tomorrow. I said she needs to, I have been given a volley of abuse, I'm a fucking bitch, a fucking idiot, she hates me so much, I make her want to die, she has pushed a door into me, she said 'happy Father's day you dickhead' to her stepdad. I am at the end of my tether, have missed so much work that they are looking for an excuse to sack me, I just don't know what to do both practically in relation to the exam and eemotionally. Things had been so much better and now we seem back to square one.
I can only imagine how overwhelming this must be for you all. An awful thing for a young girl to deal with
Is re-doing this year at school an option?
Hand holding until somebody with more use comes along.
I'm not any expert but I would ask her to apologise for what she has said. I would also ask her what she thinks is the worst thing that will happen at the exam. If she fails, who cares, I'd be proud of her for showing up when she's feeling really bad.
What year is she in? My gut feeling would be to forget about school and exams, she can do exams any time, what matters now is her mental health.
If she hasn't done the research and experimentation, there may be little point in trying to sit the exam.
I would go into the school, and speak to the head of year, or possibly the exams officer to discuss what the best way forward will be.
I agree with others that trying to push through exams this year could just be a bridge too far. Is there any possibility she can re-sit next year? Maybe moving schools would help, so she's not "moving down a year".
I know it's hard on you and DH, so for you, and lots of for your DD.
An art exam?
As lovely as it would be to have a pass I'd laugh it off. She needs calm, not more pressure.
I think the thing to do would be to go and talk to her and tell her as calmly and as unagressively as you can that you understand she is stressed but she cant talk to you and SD like that. Then go on to say that all that matters is that she goes in and does her best in the exam. Try and make it as low key as possible. Its not the end of the world if she fails. Shes very young and she can do these exams again later. They make you feel like it is the end of your life if you fail your GCSEs when you are at aschool bu thats not the case at all. She has been ill its not that she is stupid or that she cant do it, its that shes been ill. Make this clear to her. If you lessen the pressure on her you may get a better reaction. xxxxx
I agree with the majority, her overall mental health is the priority, exams can be taken at a later date and if she needs to she can always stagger her subjects/exams over the next few years. Unless she's planning on following an art based career e.g.: design, art teacher etc it's a pretty irrelevant subject which won't earn her any 'career points'.
But, you're not there to be abused, regardless of how much she's suffering with depression, anxiety etc. You still need to have boundaries and she still needs to respect you otherwise her abusive behaviour towards you will escalate. My sister experienced this with her teen daughter, she had an horrendous time between the ages of 12 and 18. My niece is now 20 and has come out the other side but says her mum (my sister) was too soft, always gave in to, never put her foot down and she didn't respect my sister (her mum) for it. Ironic huh?
Hi Chasing. So sorry to hear what you're all going through. My ds now 16 had depression and anxiety (a lot better now but still not discharged from CAMHS) so I thought I'd share my experiences.
I was guilty of celebrating too much when there was an improvement and thinking he was nearly better, then despairing far too much when the next inevitable crash came. I think it is better to be philosophic about it all, taking victory and defeat the same, so to speak. Very hard to do but take a long term view if you can.
Another thing I'd say is that IMO it's not the end of the world if they have to drop subjects. My ds dropped three in the end and he will (barring absolute disasters) still get 9 GCSEs which is all I ever did ( and most people my age I imagine). He dropped the ones with the heaviest coursework component because he had missed so much school and was not well enough to put the extra time in to catch up. This reduced his timetable which thankfully gave him a number of late morning starts so he could sleep longer. This really helped his recovery.
The namecalling (while not condoning) was all anxiety about the art exam I should think. Can you explore with her if she wants to continue with art? At this stage, the best thing might be to miss the exam and get rid of the anxiety. Later on there will be a case for facing things that are anxiety inducing but it might be a step too far at this early stage. Best wishes
I really think that if she has entered for the exam she should try to do it. Whatever the opinion of art as a subject, people gain confidence and self esteem by going through difficult experiences and succeeding in some way. Hardly a boost to her to be told that the course she has studied is laughable and pointless ( and I disagree with that opinion anyway). If she's done no work, that's one thing, but turning up and getting through it would be something to be proud of.
Hi OP. How are things this morning? Did your dd go to her exam? Sending a virtual hug. Hope you're both ok. for you and for later!
Thanks for all the replies. Calm today but she didn't go in for the exam. She stayed home and worked on the preparation element as apparently that is 80% and the final piece she would've done in the exam is 20%. That said, it isn't the final exam, she's year 10, so it might be possible for her to work on the final piece in class, we'll have to see. Either way she has a good amount of material to present now.
Yesterday was just such a shock as she's done so well, I suppose I am getting ahead of myself and need to accept there will be setbacks along the way.
Sounds like you handled it really well. 4 weeks isn't long for sertraline so you might find her mood continues to lift but of course there will be bad times and it's probably best to accept you've got another two or three difficult years ahead. When she's calm, is she sorry that she was rude before? If so then I'd just try to keep calm, remind her that being rude doesn't help anyone and accept an apology when she's calmer. If she's not at all sorry then you might need to take a harder line.
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