Supporting someone with metal health and looking after yours

Hi step daughter lives with us. When Boris locked down the country she made a split decision to visit her mum as she felt trapped. She’s now stuck there, I don’t know if she’s taking her meds, she’s now feeling quite bad as she struggling to hide it from her mum.
The main reason for my post I suppose is more about me, I care a lot about her and I struggle when she wants to die. Since shes been gone I feel guilty for feeling like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I feel mentally better myself. I hate myself for dreading her coming back, most of the time she won’t engage with her case worker especially now she’s only doing phone calls, every now and then I see a glimpse of hope but most of time she won’t help herself with anything which then falls all on me and it drains me so bad because I can’t distance myself from the negativity I just seem to swallow it and it stays in me. I can’t tell her that other wise she’d just say she’s a burden and she’s better off dead. How do I distance myself from swallowing all the negativity while still helping her and letting her take responsibility for her self. I am a very sensitive person and always have been and I struggle so much with this. I hope this post make sense.

Hi Paige,
Enjoy your rest why she is away. Don’t feel guilty about feeling like a weight has been lifted from your shoulders - make the most of it. Looking after you will in turn help you to be more resilient.


Perhaps the most important question is “Do you want her to stay with her mum now?”
Only you can answer that. If we don’t look after ourselves and put ourselves first, no one else will. I’ve learned that the hard way, used by various family members to make their lives easier. When I was ill and needed help, I didn’t even get a “Get Well” card from any of them!
What YOU want is what you should do. No one can be forced to be a carer.

She wants to come home, her mum doesn’t know the extent of her mental health, so she’s trying to hide it.
She movied in with us In December to get away from a controlling and violent boyfriend and she knew she wouldn’t be able to stay away from him if she lived in the same town. So she moved in with us, I knew she had mental health problems but as she constantly hide it I probably didn’t know to this extent. Moving here she gave up her care leavers place. She was wanting to apply for her own place, part of me thinks if she had her own place she’d have more opportunities to kill herself but part of me thinks it may be good to have some space. Unfortunately due to covid 19 all bidding has stopped. I just find it so difficult knowing she wants to die, it doesn’t matter what I say she doesn’t believe anything good about herself or her life. We had custody when they were 7 but with no support from social services or cadms we couldn’t cope and had no choice but to ask social services to take them and the courts handed her back to mum and she spent another awful 4 years there before being taken into care and I think subconsciously I feel guilty.
I to suffer from depression and anxiety but I know I can’t abandon her again as everyone in her life has already done that. I just find it difficult not to suck all her energy up and it drains me.

I would suggest you had some counselling, to support you as you deal with her.

How do I get councilling for myself? It’s hard enough trying to push to get her some and she’s had an awful childhood. I’ve done cbt before. They said they don’t use councilling any more they use cbt, well in my area anyway. I can’t afford to pay private unfortunately.

There’s a government scheme called IAPT:-

Improving Access to Pyschological Therapys.

To allow more people to get help and easier access to Councelling and CBT.

Sometimes you can refer yourself, so you don’t even need to go to the doctors.

Have a look at who is providing mental health services in your area.

Will tell you about the help available through NHS Mental health services and how to access it.

Might be a waiting list.

In my area there are various charitys that offer councelling, pay what you can afford.

They received a lottery grant.

so hopefully you will be able to access some help.