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Peace Not Pas

A Parent's Story of Battling Parental Alienation

Tag: suicide

My Best Friend Saved Me From Suicide

The following is an anonymous contribution from a very courageous alienated parent.


I used to have two boys in my life. Now i have just one. And the one I have left is my best friend. And this best friend of mine helped me through the darkest time of my life. I think he probably saved me from taking my own life.

I am an alienated dad. A couple of years ago I returned home after a couple of days away at work to discover that my now ex-wife had locked me out of my own property that we previously lived in together.

Within a couple of days I then found out that my ex had the guy from the local liquor store move into my house. They had apparently been seeing each other for over six months. Within six months of him moving into to my house, according to his mom my seven year old boy Jack was now calling my ex’s new partner dad. His mom made sure I was aware of this. She would email me and text me to let me know.

“His mom had clearly brainwashed him against me.”

During this same time period she would also take photographs of hate letters she claimed were all written by Jack and make sure she emailed or texted them to me. In these letters Jake would write that he hated me. He also wrote that after what I had done to his mom he no longer wanted me as a dad. His mom had clearly brainwashed him against me.

At that point I had no idea what parental alienation was, I also knew very little about mental health. I had nowhere to live and nowhere to go. I am self employed, so if I don’t work I don’t get paid. I spent about a week living in my pick-up truck, while still working. That week was tough, but little did I know that I had darker times ahead.

My ex had effectively stolen my son away from me. But she had not managed to take my other boy away from me; my dog Murphy. A rescue dog, with the look of The Littlest Hobo, the Canadian TV show from the 70s and 80s.

Murphy never leaves my side. He comes to work with me. Hence he is still with me despite me being locked out of the family home. So Murphy was by my side throughout that tough first week.

A friend of mine helped me out by allowing me to rent an apartment of their’s for half the price. I had confided in him about my situation. I will always be grateful for him helping me with accommodation. Although he simply didn’t understand what I was going through.

When  I moved into the apartment, although things were tough, I found work a healthy distraction while I began to get my head adjusted to the situation I now found myself in.

“As for me I’d given up on myself.”

However as the weeks progressed I became more and more unmotivated. I didn’t know it at the time but I was beginning to fall into a depressive episode. Within a month or so I was not going to work, I was behind on my rent, and I spent much of each day simply laying on the couch, with the TV on, but I was just laying there feeling hopeless, feeling lost. Feeling heartbroken due to the severing of the loving relationship I had with my boy Jack. However throughout this whole time Murphy was by my side, on the couch huddled up next to me.

Murphy was by my side throughout this whole time. I made sure Murphy was fed and walked. However as for me I’d given up on myself.

My mood became darker. I don’t mind saying now, I was beginning to have suicidal thoughts. As the weeks progressed, these thoughts turned into a plan in my head. These thought processes were all consuming. There was a local woods I would walk Murphy in every day. In those woods I had identified a tree I would hang myself from.

Every day while out with Murphy when I walked past this tree, this plan of mine became more entrenched in my mind. On some walks with Murphy I would walk him as quickly as possible so I could back to the apartment and just lay down. But I would always make a point of walking past this particular tree.

Weeks became months. I continued to spend the majority of my days on the couch cuddling Murphy. There wasn’t a day he didn’t cuddle himself up to me. He was all I had.

“Who would take care of my best friend Murphy?”

However I still continued to have these active thoughts of suicide and yet there was one thought that remained in the back of my mind. “Who would take care of my best friend Murphy?” I know it may sound silly to some people that are not dog owners. But Murphy was all I had, and if I ended my life, what would happen to Murphy?

I remember on numerous occasions, during my darkest days holding Murphy, while laying on the couch and crying in complete despair, not knowing what to do. Would I ever have a relationship with Jack ever again? How would I battle my ex and her partner? Should I just end my life to end the pain? If I ended my life, who would care for Murphy? My ex had never had any time for him. Murphy and Jack used to love playing together. All throughout this dark time, it was as if Murphy was intentionally supporting me in some kind of way.

After about three months, I was completely penniless, I owed my friend even more money for rent and I continued to feel hopeless and suicidal. My friend that owned the apartment gave up trying to persuade me to go and see a doctor. One day he just took Murphy and I. That day was pivotal.

Fast forward two years later. I am now in a better place mentally. I am not ashamed to admit that I am on prozac daily to help manage my depression. I now have an understanding about mental health. I now understand parental alienation for what it is.

I still don’t have contact with my Jack. But I am no longer hopeless. I can’t afford to be. Some days are better than others. But I am continuing to pursue contact with Jack through the courts. I now represent myself, that is how much more stable I am. I have also returned to work and now have a regular income once again. I will be eternally grateful to my friend that helped me out. I now also attend a monthly group that supports fathers in my situation. I get a lot of support from the group.

What about Murphy? He continues to go everywhere with me. He never leaves my side. We are inseparable. We are and always will be best buddies. Murphy probably saved my life.


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The Story of a Great Man and a Great Father who Suffered at the Mercy of an Alienating Parent

“It’s his story yes. But it’s being told so others will continue to fight. It’s to raise awareness about Parental Alienation. You and many other fathers have said the exact same words “…I was there.” This is NOT okay. I watched a great man be torn apart. I watched everyone turn their backs on him including the legal system. For what? His daughter to be raised in a hostile, emotionally unstable and abusive home while he suffered at their mercy. It’s unjust. This story is to save another man, another father. It is 100% truthful. It helps me sleep at night knowing he didn’t die for nothing. He was very compassionate and a truly kindhearted, genuine man. He did not deserve this cruelty. No human being deserves to feel worthless”

[Written by the anonymous contributor of this story.]

“Living without your children is the closest thing you get to hell on Earth”

The Story

Four years ago I met my partner wounded and broken by his ex-girlfriend who he had a young baby with. She falsely accused him of assault and had a restraining order issued against him. She was abusive, both mentally and physically and he was fearful of her violent outbursts and psychotic episodes. She is narcissistic and used their daughter as a pawn to get what she wanted, not caring what damage was done in the process.

She harassed my partner and I endlessly with false accusations, bullshit lawsuits, and tens of thousands of incessant text messages for years. I watched how stressed he would get from the copious amounts of texts and emails consuming his life daily. He tried to ignore them, but couldn’t. They wouldn’t stop, no matter how many times he voiced his personal boundaries and space.

“He spent every last penny he had fighting through lawyers and court.”

He tried to rise above her mental insanity and attempted to co-parent respectfully. He stood up and stood down trying to cope with her unrealistic demands for the sake of their child. He spent every last penny he had fighting through lawyers and court because mediation and old school “sit down and talk it out” was out of the question. He lived in constant fear of the next legal document waiting to be served; awaiting the next hurdle he would have to jump through to protect himself and his daughter. The anxiety that followed, as well as the constant and unsubstantiated worry that caused significant distress and interfered with his daily life.

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Even though she was a narcissist and abusive, he was never given the rights he deserved. He fought for custody in court and was granted weekend visitations and then ten days a month, a right his ex-girlfriend did not honour. She would play games and make EVERY single child exchange extremely difficult and toxic, exposing their child to undue stress, blaming him in the process. It broke my heart to see him fall apart after child exchanges. He would come home exhausted, completely defeated, and broken. He felt manipulated, and worthless. It was really hard to watch that happen over and over to someone you love.

When life was going smoothly and everyone was happy, she would create drama out of thin air. She would invent completely fictional scenarios tainting him as the “deadbeat father” stereotype to try and make him and those around him believe her lies. When she couldn’t control him, she would control how others saw him, intentionally turning friends and family against him. I saw the shame he felt at the grocery store or the swimming pool. I watched him avoid social situations in fear of being judged, embarrassed or humiliated and I saw the insecurities that followed.

“Mentally exhausted, not only was he in dire need of sleep, but in dire need of peace.”

I watched over the years as his sense of self slowly eroded from the verbal abuse, the threats, the bullying and the relentless criticism. I watched as this slowly consumed him. He tried to be happy on the outside, tried to enjoy life, but the damage was detrimental and his confidence and self-esteem became weaker and weaker every time there was contact with her. From a happy morning at the house to a pick up to get his daughter that afternoon, the affects in one hour’s contact, were disparaging. Every year, it got worse. The tension this had on our relationship, the stress that invaded our personal lives, the damage it was doing psychologically was all too real. The darkness was taking over. He was tired. I was tired. Mentally exhausted, not only was he in dire need of sleep, but in dire need of peace.

Parental Alienation

This is the story of a father who was alienated.  To those reading who think parental alienation only means “never seeing the child” you are partially correct, but there is more. The term also involves the “psychological manipulation of a child into showing unwarranted fear, disrespect or hostility towards a parent and/or family members. It is a distinctive form of psychological abuse and family violence, directed at both the child and the rejected parent and/or family members.” Usually, this is the result of a parent wishing to exclude another parent from the life of a child or an attempt to punish the parent for personal reasons. In the court of law, this is child abuse. Parental alienation is a set of strategies that parents use to undermine and interfere with the child’s relationship with the other parent.  There are numerous ways a parent can alienate a child from the other parent.

“The alienating parent was determined to blame him and make him suffer for her own emotional instability without concern for how it impacted the child involved.”

In this situation, impeding with visitation, despite orders was a primary cause of alienation, but most significant and most damaging was the consistently denigrating the other parent in front of anyone who would listen, including their daughter. Anger, verbal and/or physical abuse against the targeted parent was experienced in front of the child or third party on more than one occasion. Assertions of hate and vengeance were constant as the alienating parent created scenes at every opportunity to either upset the child and/or make the child feel guilty during child exchanges. The alienating parent was determined to blame him and make him suffer for her own emotional instability without concern for how it impacted the child involved. Using constant accusations, crying to the child about how the father ruined their family, painting him as the bad parent who took away their happy home was not beneath the alienating tactics used to belittle and control. These alienating strategies knew no boundaries and showed no concern for the emotional well-being of the child, who was forced to take sides. 

Threats to take away the child were relentless unless demands were met to suit the mother. Luxurious personal purchases were commonplace while she overlooked the child’s essentials and accused the other parent for her “financial hardship.” She continuously demanded more child support to support her spending. Her rude, nasty and controlling behavior was continuous as she attempted to control his parenting, dictating what he could and could not do with his child on his specific days. When it was his time with the child, he would be harassed by incessant amounts of phone calls and texts with insignificant issues and drama that impeded his quality time with his daughter. She would also demand FaceTime regularly, something which he was always denied, and she would ask the daughter if she was okay, and show concern about her being in her father’s care in an attempt to cause distress in the child.  If he missed a call or a text she would punish him by taking away from his parenting time for the next visit. 

Parental Alienation – The Aftermath

Parental alienation is extremely damaging to the children involved; this is why it is considered child abuse. There are numerous articles and publications outlining the psychological damages, also known as Parental Alienation Syndrome. The degree of damage on the child’s psyche varies with the severity of the alienation and with the child’s temperament and circumstance. However, all children are affected by parental alienation on some level.

“The defamation of character and the slander can have severe impacts on a person’s reputation, career and life.”

Let’s look deeper into the parent who is being alienated. Does society recognize the emotional destruction and psychological trauma experienced by the parent who is alienated? The constant belittling, demoralizing and degrading remarks, the endless high conflict arguments, the verbal and/or physical abuse, the lies, the deceit, and the corruption are all part of the tool kit used by the alienator seeking control. The defamation of character and the slander can have severe impacts on a person’s reputation, career and life. The financial struggles that result from the copious legal fees fighting for custody in court cause further damage. These are some examples of the mental abuse the alienated parent must endure if they are to have any chance at seeing their children. These strategies are most commonly used by the alienator to intimidate the alienated parent in an effort to ensure that they not only fail in their role as a parent but to also ensure that they are rejected by their children as well.

Sadly, there are even more severe and undermining tactics used by the alienator, these include false allegations of mental, physical and/or sexual abuse towards themselves or their children.  The alienated parent is accused of a crime they did not commit, suffering severe psychological damage while having to defend their innocence. Even if evidence is in the alienated parent’s favor, the charges are dropped, or they have been able to prove they are not guilty, they are still viewed by the public and/or courts as untrustworthy and left under scrutiny inflicting an overwhelming sense of helplessness. This tactic is used by the alienator to look like a victim, while in reality they are the perpetrator, seeking to gain control of the situation. In many cases, there are no witnesses, which means it is one parent’s word against the other. This is a very dangerous and illegal tactic that can cause irreversible damage to the mental health of the alienated parent and the children involved.

“Essentially grieving for a child who is still alive.”

While the alienated parent is repeatedly tormented and wrongfully accused by the alienator, they are also, in most cases, not in contact with their children. This in itself has a significant effect on the alienated parent’s well-being. Essentially grieving for a child who is still alive. They say that when your child dies before you, a piece of you dies with them. I think this is very relevant to a parent who is forced out of their child’s life. This is a pain so deep, yet it can be completely avoided, if not for the vengeful parent seeking to destroy and alienate.

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Many alienators prey on the love the alienated parent has for their children. The alienating parent selfishly exploits this deep love and because they are willing to exploit their children, they always have the upper hand.

Suicide

Suicide is the act of causing one’s own death. This is a topic that is uncomfortable for most people to discuss and as such is commonly avoided. I myself hadn’t given it much thought before it changed my life. Risk factors of suicide include many prolonged mental health disorders but it can also be an impulsive act resulting from too much stress due to stressors such as financial struggles, broken or unhealthy relationships, and excessive bullying. I believe the cause of this suicide was years of relentless mental abuse, and an unwillingness to respect boundaries in regards to co-parenting and disregarding the father’s and the child’s wellbeing.  Over time this caused extreme stress, anxiety, and depression. I believe this was what caused the suicide of an otherwise vibrant and exultant man. Everything about this story is tragic. A life was lost due to vengeance, and now a child will grow up without her father.

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Unfortunately, this has become a common thought process in many alienated parents’ lives. Some fight through these suicidal thoughts, others consumed by pain, are not so fortunate. These types of suicides can usually be avoided. This was a man so abused, so broken, so victimized that he thought suicide was his only option. He was intentionally made to feel worthless, helpless and hopeless. He sacrificed for years, suffering as he fought to be part of his daughter’s life, forced to fail every single time. This is unjust. No parent should have to sacrifice their life fighting for what is rightfully theirs.

In loving memory of PKP,  May 24th, 1983 – July 1st, 2017


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We are also more than happy to feature quality content by writers; any wish to remain anonymous will be respected, as is the case above.

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The CCA Support Team

Parental Alienation, Good Versus Evil

In my experience of battling parental alienation thus far I have come to realise the following: It is generally not recognised by the judicial system, dismissed by so called professionals, and underestimated even when recognised and documented as minimally as possible with phrases such as “exhibits alienating behaviours.” It appears to only be known by those affected by it.

So we have a set of behaviours that result in both short and long-term emotional damage of alienated children. But tragically no Government institution in the UK officially recognises and manages parental alienation effectively. For those readers that may not be familiar with the term parental alienation, please see here for a detailed definition.

However for those of us that are targeted parents, it is real. It is something we live with every day. As a parent, there is no worse emotional pain than being denied contact with your very own children. Severe parental alienation involves the alienating parent brainwashing the children into ultimately destroying any previously loving relationship between the children and the targeted parent. The emotional pain for the targeted parent is often described as grieving for children that are still alive.

“In most cases personality disorders are at the core of severe parental alienation.”

So I guess, in line with the title of this article we arrive at the following question. What drives the targeting parent to behave in such an abhorrent way towards, not just the ex-partner, but also their very own children.

The available research and evidence on parental alienation identifies that in most cases personality disorders are at the core of severe parental alienation. And herein lies the issue on non-recognition by numerous Western governments. The Family Court and social workers dismiss parental alienation because they all too often view it as a child custody issue as opposed to a child protection issue. In addition to this, neither of these professional fields have any understanding of mental health. And as such will be unfamiliar with the mental health concept of personality disorders. For example, early on in my own case my Cafcass social worker advised me “trust me, I’ve been doing this job for years, your ex will cool down, and in a couple of weeks she will come around to the idea of letting you see the kids.” That was the in the summer of 2016. To this day I am still pursuing contact with my children through the courts. My ex has not changed her approach. She continues to breach any Court Orders that promote or would result in contact between my children and I.

Due to the nature of divorce, particularly where children are involved, very few are free from anger, conflict and hostility. And all too often with parental alienation, it is not until separation that the targeting parent’s personality traits are fully revealed. To the extent that the behaviour being exhibited is vengeful, malevolent, dangerous and abusive.

So what are personality disorders? They are conditions whereby an individual will significantly differ from an average person. This is particularly in terms of how they feel, perceive, think and ultimately relate to others. Symptoms or negative behaviours are known to worsen in stressful situations. The British NHS states that “there is no single approach that suits everyone and treatment should be tailored to the individual.” This evidence based statement is clearly not considered by the ‘one size fits all approach’ provided by Cafcass. The futile and misinformed approach from Cafcass is to send both the targeted and targeting parent on co-parenting courses with the intention of modifying behaviours. However in cases of severe parental alienation that involve the targeting parent potentially presenting with personality disorder traits, such interventions will have no effect  on the alienator.

The following types of personality disorders are most prevalent in terms of the alienating parent in cases of severe parental alienation:

Narcissistic Personality Disorder will present itself as an individual exhibiting grandiose beliefs about themselves, regardless of whether they are real or imagined. The narcissist is completely lacking in empathy for others. And is normally totally consumed with self-gratification. Available research suggests that this type of personality disorder is most common in terms of the alienating parent of severe parental alienation.

Sociopathic Personality Disorder generally presents itself as a flagrant  disregard for the rights and needs of others. In terms of parental alienation, this will normally present as the targeting parent brainwashing a child/children against the targeted parent, therefore engaging in psychopathic behaviour.

Psychopathic Personality Disorder in terms of the personal traits can be quite similar that of a sociopath. However where sociopaths appear more normal, psychopaths are believed to be born with behavioural differences such as impulsiveness and under-arousal. Such characteristics can result in a lack of fear, resulting in risk behaviours and a lack of recognition or understanding of social norms.

Antisocial Personality Disorder is often referred to, within psychiatry as psychopathy or sociopathy.  Individuals with this disorder tend to have a complete lack of empathy and exhibit contempt for others’ sufferings, rights and feelings. In most cases they present as arrogant. They also have a tendency to believe productive work is beneath them. They are also known to be highly opinionated.

Borderline Personality Disorder normally presents with very impulsive behaviours. A distinctive trait is repeating pattern of instability in interpersonal relationships. Individuals affected by this disorder tend to fluctuate between opposite and polar feelings and behaviours. In terms of parental alienation, it is typical for the targeting parent to become consumed with the manipulation of others. While at the same time taking measures to protect themselves against any threats against them, whether real or imagined.

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So if we’ve explored what makes an alienating parent, it is only fair we look at what makes a targeted parent.

“The experience of being removed as a loving parent strikes at the heart of any loving parent.”

Targeted parents will be subjected to shame and stigma usually due to the character assassination implemented by the targeting parent and their enablers. The alienated parent normally has allegations of emotional, physical and sexual abuse made against them by the targeting parent. This is done to kickstart a safeguarding referral that invariably results in court ordered non-contact, while the allegations are investigated. However for the targeting parent this provides time for initial alienating behaviours on the children. It is worth noting that such allegations are virtually always disproved (Baker, 2005).

The experience of being removed as a loving parent from the life of one’s child due to a court order based on false allegations strikes at the heart of any loving parent. Statistically suicide rates are reported to be of epidemic proportions among parents going through such circumstances. This is of particular concern for fathers, who struggle to fight for a loving relationship with their children (Kposowa, 2000; Kposowa, 2003).

Parental alienation is arguably not a gender specific issue. However due to socio-economic reasons and a cultural and professional biased towards parental stereotyping, statistically (in the UK) most alienated parents are non-residential fathers. This in itself creates a separate issue. Research informs us of an alienated father’s most pressing need; their justifiable need to be involved with their children’s lives, remains unrecognised and unsupported across the professional field. The expectation and patterns of traditional gender-role socialisation creates a barrier in which fathers are not expected to acknowledge personal difficulties and request help. A pattern that all too often repeats itself across the field of men’s mental health. Even respectfully disregarding the suicide rates, such alienation all too often leads to the alienated parent giving up the fight for contact with their children (Lowenstein, 2007). This point is explored in more depth in an earlier post of mine Can there ever be any excuse for parental alienation?

“I had stumbled across an online community with an indescribable outpouring of support, advice and compassion for one another.”

From my own experience as an alienated parent and having sought out specific support, my conclusion is that there is neither support or recognition from any formal or government sanctioned services for alienated parents. So at this point I looked online for support and advice. And what I found was astounding. I stumbled across an incalculable number of alienated parents across the developed world passionately campaigning, advocating and pleading online for some kind of social change that will effectively challenge the abuse that is parental alienation. This was an online world I never existed. This is explored further in an earlier article of mine The Awe-inspiring Online Community of Parental Alienation.

Ultimately I had stumbled across an online community with an indescribable outpouring of support, advice and compassion for one another. This in turn provided me with an invaluable insight into what makes an alienated parent. The support, sharing of advice and overall feeling of camaraderie is astounding.

From my own engagement with other alienated parents, both on and off line I have realised the following. What makes an alienated parent is compassion, strength, resilience, empathy and ultimately support for one another. However in battling parental alienation, particularly when severe, both sides are just as determined as one another, but ultimately for different reasons. One for good and one for bad.

Mahatma Gandhi once said “when I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it, always.”

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Please Note: We pledge to never make a profit or any other form of financial gain from any individuals affected by the current injustice of the family justice system.

We will gladly signpost individuals to professionals within our wider network who operate in line with our core principles; contact us for more details. 

We pledge to never request payment from such individuals, nor request a finder’s fee from such professionals for any referrals made.

We offer a completely free Support Line. To find out more prior to booking click here. To book a call from one of our dedicated Support Line Volunteers click here

The CCA Support Team

Say Hello to Heaven

Since Chris Cornell’s death on 18th May 2017 I have been considering whether to write about it or not. I decided to reflect on this decision for a while and consider what it was I actually wanted to express, discuss and disclose.

As a music fan I first came across Chris Cornell as a musician with my purchase of the self titled album Temple of Dog which was released in 1991. This album blew my mind, Temple of the Dog is without doubt one of my all time favourite albums. The sheer quality of the songs, the vocal arrangements between the two vocalists is phenomenal, along with the underlying message of the album itself.

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Credit: Central Mo News

The album was a tribute to Andrew Wood, the former lead singer of Malfunkshun and Mother Love Bone. Andrew Wood died in March 1990 due to a heroin overdose. Having been a close friend of Andrew Wood, Chris Cornell gathered together musicians to form Temple of the Dog. The line-up included former Mother Love Bone members Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament. Soundgarden and later Pearl Jam drummer Matt Cameron was also involved. Newcomers Mike McCready and Eddie Vedder were also included due to their involvement with a project with Ament and Gossard, a project that would become Pearl Jam.

“As with any suicide the Cornell family are seeking answers.”

What went through the mind of Chris Cornell on that fateful night, only he knows. Cornell’s post mortem toxicology report notes that there were seven different drugs in his system, including a significant dose of the anxiety medicine lorazepam (Ativan). However “these drugs did not contribute to the cause of death” was the statement of the medical examiner.

As with any suicide the Cornell family are seeking answers. They have previously blamed the rare side effects of lorazepam, that includes suicidal thoughts. However the medical examiner noted that the level of lorazepam in Cornell’s blood was not high enough to suggest a correlation between the drug and the possibility of such side effects. Chris did on occassions talk openly about his depression. But for those unfamiliar with the complexities of mental health, the obvious question may arise “why would someone, in one of the biggest bands in world, married with three beautiful children want to kill themselves?”

I’m not a psychologist, I’m not a psychiatrist. I’m just a humble mental health nurse that works on an acute psychiatric ward. My own understanding of intentional suicide is simple but tragic. For whatever reason, an individual finds themself in a deep, dark and despairing state of mind. At this point the individual has lost all hope of recovery. The pain is all-consuming. This pain is so intense, so immense, that the only way out is to end their life.

The writing of this article has prompted me to reflect on a past experience at work. Sometime ago we had a particular patient with us for a number of weeks. This patient was so acutely unwell, that he was absolutely determined to kill himself by whatever means he could find. Suffice to say this individual was placed on what is known as an arms length constant. There is one particular incident regarding this patient that will always stay with me. On this particular shift this patient attempted to ligature himself to death (as he attempted to do on a daily basis). An alarm was pulled by staff and additional staff immediately responded. Once the immediate risk had been managed I found myself in the company of the patient and two nursing assistants, in an attempt to continue to de-escalate the patient’s obvious anxiety.

“Fuck that bullshit, such academic bollocks is irrelevant in such extreme circumstances.”

Now I’m normally quite articulate with my words, but it is incredibly difficult to describe in words the compassion, empathy, kindness and overall unconditional positive regard these two nursing assistants showed this patient. Now I have a first class honours degree in mental health nursing. Fuck that bullshit, such academic bollocks is irrelevant in such extreme circumstances. I learnt more from the way those two nursing assistants spoke to that patient than I could ever have hoped to learn from my nursing degree. Their overall approach, demeanour and care for this individual on that particular day will stay with me forever. I am honoured to count these two members of staff as close friends of mine. And they in turn have been there for me in recent times, and I am eternally grateful for their love and support.

So in returning to Chris Cornell we still have no answer. All too often suicide occurs due to our ability to put on a brave face that dangerously hides any or all of the pain and torture being experienced.

To conclude, I think we all need to be talking about mental health more. Whether that be in a public or private capacity. Stating the obvious, the more we are there for each other the better.

The lyrics from Say Hello to Heaven speak for themselves:

“And he hurt so bad like a soul breaking, but he never said nothing to me.”

btg dad


Please Note: We pledge to never make a profit or any other form of financial gain from any individuals affected by the current injustice of the family justice system.

We will gladly signpost individuals to professionals within our wider network who operate in line with our core principles; contact us for more details. 

We pledge to never request payment from such individuals, nor request a finder’s fee from such professionals for any referrals made.

We offer a completely free Support Line. To find out more prior to booking click here. To book a call from one of our dedicated Support Line Volunteers click here

The CCA Support Team

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