Feeling Overwhelmed

Hi Everyone

I am a 56 year old single mum to two teenage girls. My eldest is 19 and has just done her first year at university but is in a complete state. I brought her home mid June as she was feeling ill but since then she has just gone downhill with her mental health and I am trying my best to look after her but she won’t get help and i am starting to feel overwhelmed, stressed and resentful. She keeps having panic attacks, usually in the early hours of the morning, and usually when I have to get up early the next morning for something. I definitely think there is an element of panic relating to being left alone, after finding herself stuck in a 6 bed flat all alone for 4 months at the beginning of the year when we went into lockdown. She has also been very low and couldn’t get motivated to do anything, so has 2 assignments still outstanding. She won’t go anywhere with me, won’t see the Doctor, barely comes out of her bedroom , has no appetite and only showers once a week after I prompt her. I feel like I am just keeping her alive. I don’t know what I can do to help, if she refuses to get help. Last night she sent me a text at 4am with a :frowning: symbol which is her standard way to ask me to come to her. I was so tired, I went in to see her and asked her to come in with me so I could lay down to talk to her as I had to get up early, but she refused, so I got angry at her and told her if she wouldn’t get help then I couldn’t help her and I went back to bed and left her crying. I just feel like I can’t look after her any more and my own mental health is suffering. I just wondered if anyone else had experienced anything similar with someone who was clearly having mental health issues but refuses (or feels too overwhelmed) to get help.

Hello Michelle
Welcome to the forum, you’re in the right place to meet people who understand what you’re living with and how it affects you, many carers are struggling at the moment for all sorts of different reasons. I wanted to highlight some of the options for connecting with fellow carers and for getting support from Carers UK should you need it.

Carers UK are running online weekly meet ups for carers to take some time for themselves and chat to other carers. Feel free to join if you’d like to and there’s no pressure to share anything you don’t want to.

You can find information on how to register to our online meetups at the following pages:

Care for a Cuppa: Online meetups | Carers UK
This meetup is a great to connect with other carers who understand what your going through.

We are also running some fun and relaxed sessions on all sorts of topics from learning to dance to wellbeing sessions, a lot of carers have told us how useful they’ve found the session Michelle and helped them. I’ve attached the link here for you Share and Learn | Carers UK

And of course we have our helpline which you can contact either by phone or email if you need any advice or support.
Our Telephone Helpline is available on 0808 808 7777 from Monday to Friday, 9am – 6pm or you can contact us by email (advice@carersuk.org)

Please have a look at the above links Michelle, it would be lovely to see you there.
with best wishes

Hi Michelle,

from what I have read on here, resisting help is not that unusual.

Most universities have good mental health support services. Mine had a helpline and online support 24/7 as well as face to face support.

Youngminds has information for both parents and young people https://www.youngminds.org.uk

She really does need to contact her tutor for advice to arrange for a LOA or extension. Universities are fully aware of the extra stress students have been under due to Covid and have lots of options available. Unfortunately, they won’t liaise with you as she is an adult, but if you contacted her tutor / course/ head of mental wellbeing lead (look on their website for details and email addresses) to alert them of the situation, they may then contact her .


Thank you for your replies. Melly1 I hadn’t thought to contact university to make them aware, I just assumed she had to do that herself, I’ll do that and it’s massively helpful to have a useful suggestion. I have been looking on young minds and other places but limited if she refuses help. I may talk to someone myself though to offload it all. Thanks again.