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Suicide attempt & Social Services...

27 replies

ScouseBird8364 · 16/09/2015 19:12

I'm hoping for some advice and hopefully some reassurance from those of you who may've experienced similar or may know the answer...

My husband, who had a Stroke 3 years ago and suffers with cognitive impairment aswell as anxiety and depression, took an overdose of prescription meds on Sunday. He was admitted to hospital and was treated effectively. Basically, an adult Social Worker came to see him on the ward yesterday morning and advised us both that as a duty of care, she would need to inform children's Social Services, as they were at home (aswell as myself) at the time, albeit in bed (5am), and due to the fact my husband had drank some alcohol with the ingestion of the pills.

I am now extremely worried that SS will be paying us a visit - do they look to remove children if one parent tries to commit suicide or has ongoing struggles with mental health? :-(

Any help and/or advice would be appreciated x

OP posts:

cashewnutty · 16/09/2015 19:16

No idea why she did that. As a SW in children and families i would say that as long as there was one protective and able parent in the house then i wouldn't be bothering you. They may visit (or they may not). They might just do checks with the school etc. They certainly won't remove your children unless there is something else significant going on.


Welshmaenad · 16/09/2015 19:20

They won't be looking to remove your children over this incident and many families with an adult with MH issues and SS involvement are supported to continue parenting their children .

They will likely ask some questions about the incident and its impact on the children and what measures you already have in place to safeguard the children. I have known families where one parent has severe MH issues sufficient to be deemed a risk to the children, be required to sign a contract of expectation that the parent us not left in sole charge of the children, but this isn't always the case; and it depends on so many factors including the age of the children and the oarent's history and engagement with support and treatment.

Basically, every situation is so unique that it's impossible to say what action will be taken but please be assured that they aren't going to swoop in and take your children. Their role is to ensure children are safe, and they will support you to ensure this safeguarding happens within the family.


goawayalready · 16/09/2015 19:24

how old are your children?

they will want to risk assess the situation young children are likely to suffer harm if an adult is trying to commit suicide and leaving pills and alcohol lying around (for an extreme example) they could take the pills themselves etc

be prepared for them to want him out of the house while they assess your parenting capability your ability to protect your kids and for him to get significant help to remove the risk of trying again

this is just my experience however someone else could have a completely different one and it does all depend on the social worker some pop in and quick check flag the school to keep an eye out and leave others spend forever in your hair and can make your life worse to "protect the children" if you react negatively it will be worse for you

if they come in be open honest never antagonised no matter what they say to you and think before you speak

i hope you get a good one

sorry you're having a bad time Flowers


jenniferjane21 · 16/09/2015 19:31

Hi just to reassure you, almost exactly the same happened here. do who has depression took an overdose of prescription medicines with alcohol. He was in hospital overnight and they said SS had to be informed. DC were all asleep as it happened late evening. I have never heard anything more from anyone. Please don't worry too much, sorry to hear what you are going through x


BackInTheRealWorld · 16/09/2015 19:33

If they are school age they will also want to contact school.


quietbatperson · 16/09/2015 19:35

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LookingUpAtTheStars · 16/09/2015 19:35

My mum (single parent) tried to commit suicide a lot and social services never visited or had anything to do with us. I am sorry you are going through this but if from my own experience I think they should at least check on the situ at home for the sake of the children.


LookingUpAtTheStars · 16/09/2015 19:35



BackInTheRealWorld · 16/09/2015 19:41

They won't be looking to remove the children, they just want to be sure you have enough support in place.


acquiescence · 16/09/2015 19:42

I work nhs mental health services and also in children and families service (social services). I think it is highly unlikely ss will visit you as there is nothing to suggest they are at risk. They may make a note of it however on file. Might they do visit or offer any support, it will be just that, an offer of support.

I hope your husband is ok and getting adequate support from his GP/mental health services, it sounds like an awful position for you OP.


MiscellaneousAssortment · 16/09/2015 19:43

Probably a 'just in case' check, but still, it's the last thing you need when you're already coping with so much. Are you ok?

I mean, stupid question really but I mean, under the circumstances, are you surviving? Head above water just about? Or drowning? Flowers


ScouseBird8364 · 16/09/2015 19:48

Thanks for your replies so far guys, my babies are 7, 4 and 7mnths.

Jenniferjane21 sorry you have also been through this, how is your partner now? x

OP posts:

ScouseBird8364 · 16/09/2015 19:56

Miscellaneous, many thanks for your concern, I appreciate it. I'm ok, have to be! My husband is in a low place, mainly due to the fact he can't seem to accept our new lives post-Stroke (we lost our home not so long ago and had to be re-housed) x x

OP posts:

MiscellaneousAssortment · 16/09/2015 21:52

Oh Scouse I feel for you, I really do.

SS is made clear by the age of your youngest. Everything gets reported to childrens services when you have a baby under 1yr, as horrifically, that's when abuse escalates, and more fatalities happen. Not applicable in your case, but nowadays there's a blanket rule, but from a good place.

So I'd say, don't expend anymore mental or emotional energy on it. Wipe it from your brain and if they get round to visiting/ phoning, then you can focus on it then...

If it helps, i think I can relate to what you, & your dp, are going through, both of you, in different ways. But it's probably not for now, except to say, my heart goes out to you, so so much, and I hope there's someone there to give you a hug xxxxxx

I am also wondering, if you're that person, the one that no matter what you feel like, no matter how much you want to collapse, to not cope, to scream and cry, that you can't. Because it won't change anything, and you have to keep going (For DS in my case).

Anyway, I am thinking of you, and your partner Flowers


AngelWings74 · 16/09/2015 22:05

I am also a social worker and the majority of work I do is about supporting families. Your children are young and it sounds as if u are under a huge amount of stress. It is likely that this will be seen as section 17 of Children Act, which is duty to assess If a child in area is a child in need of support and services as opposed to child protection enquiry. Be honest and engage with assessment if they do visit and they maybe able to offer support. Please do not worry, I appreciate its easy for me to say that. :)


SlowlyGoingINSAINIA · 16/09/2015 22:08

Has your DP received any help for his brain injury? (I'm guessing that from you said 'cognitive impairment') attended rehab or support groups? Do you have support for yourself?
I'm sure you don't have anything to worry about with re CS. It may be worth you asking for a brain injury social worker (if your area still has them).



Fivegomad · 16/09/2015 22:31

Op, I have nothing useful to add except my support.

I am also wondering, if you're that person, the one that no matter what you feel like, no matter how much you want to collapse, to not cope, to scream and cry, that you can't. Because it won't change anything, and you have to keep going (For DS in my case).
Misc...I totally understand.

In my case, it's my DD.....although we can never really know your situation OP, some of us really do know what it's like to be that person Misc mentioned, trying our best to do our best and feeling we are not quite managing it.

In the words of that great philosopher Dory the fish....
" just keep swimming, just keep swimming "

Suicide attempt & Social Services...

ScouseBird8364 · 16/09/2015 22:53

Oh Lord, what is a section 17? Is that where my babies would go on some sort of protection plan?? :-( :-(

Is there a timescale as to how long they must contact me from receipt of referral? :-(

OP posts:

TheWildRumpyPumpus · 16/09/2015 23:23

I was in your husbands situation. We had visit from Social Services to check that the children were well cared for at home, that everything was ok at school (so yes, they will speak to them probably).

They had concerns that the children may have been the ones to find me after a suicide attempt, so for a period of time I wasn't allowed to be alone with them.

We were signed off from them pretty quickly as we were lucky to have lots of family support.


Fivegomad · 16/09/2015 23:25

Please don't worry, section 17 is all about making sure you and your babies have the help they need through this god awful time. It is absolutely NOT a " protection plan" it is purely a legal term that defines your rights as a family to access help and support. Despite everything you may hear or read, social services are on your side, their primary concern is making sure you and your family get the help you need right now. I don't know about timescales, but I would. Expect you would be contacted very soon. Honestly, although it doesn't feel like it right now, it's such a relief to find you are not alone . I wish you all the very best for the future xxx


MiscellaneousAssortment · 17/09/2015 00:25

Please don't panic. Not about this. It's ok, it really is x

The 'in need' bit of children's services is NOT the 'at risk' bit. It's separate and actually, a very good lawyer once advised me that it would be a positive step if I could bring myself to do it as they do have access to funds/ other help to support families who are going through a tough time. Now the flip side of this is that they're not exactly standing around waiting to throw money or resources at people, so they're not that eager to label families or children as 'in need', and the thresholds are set pretty high.

So, if they get in contact, they have have useful contacts or groups/ activities that you can join, or stuff like respite if you need that (that comes from you rather than them forcing you btw).

I confess I didn't go that route in the end but it really made me think twice about my perceptions of social services and my knee jerk 'don't take my child' reactions :)


Sam89 · 21/06/2016 01:37

Hey I'm hoping for some advice my boyfriend has mental health issues n recently attempted suicide in my house wer I live with my kids me and the children wer not home when this happened and now social services r wanting to come out for a talk my boyfriend does not live with us but we are wanting to get married in the future will I still b able to b with my boyfriend aswell as my children or will they stop me sing him 😔 thanks x


Serena1214 · 10/09/2016 16:17

Hi all I need some help, I was filling low and Depressed and didn't talk to anyone abouthow I feel but got on with daily duties like get up and dressed, and getting the kids up dressed , feed going out with them watch film we just went to watch finding Dory but was still down until tried to take my life, it didn't work and God gave me a second chance and I've turned myself around and pick my self up and talk to family friends on how I feel, but SS was contacted and I'm scared they will take my kids, our house had sold so I'm living out my mother -in laws for nearly three months , but my family member want me up move my kids to somewhere else cleaner basically the house dose need some repairs and decorating but nothing to harm the kids. What do I do because I'm srying to get myself back on track but feel torn between family and everything is better and I don't wanna lose my kids,


Puzzledconfusedandbewildered · 10/09/2016 16:19

They'll be there to help not judge. Let them in and take the support

Flowers to you


Puzzledconfusedandbewildered · 10/09/2016 16:20

Read the post. s17 is about support not protection

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