I am a PhD student specialising in the cognitive biases associated with childhood anxiety. I am keen to get as much applied experience alongside my research as possible. I wondered if you knew of any opportunities for me to gain some experience?
Some students apply to work as Healthcare Assistants on a sessional basis in inpatient settings to get some experience of working with children and young people with mental health needs.
My twelve years old son is affected by Cerebral Palsy, just looking for professional support to make his life easy and self dependent.
My son has just been diagnosed with severe obsessive disorder. He already has learning difficulties and has a statement of educational needs. On his recent hospital admission where he was seen by CAMHS and the social worker I was advised that we would need a meeting at school to discuss how we progress things forward. In the meantime I have had to do the professionals work for them. I have contacted the school and worked in partnership with the head of year and also the exams officer in order for my son to get the right entitlement for his upcoming GCSE exams. My son also has to make decisions regarding his future this year and I am of the belief that currently he is not in the best place to make these at this time. I recently visited a college for him and although the course is what he wants to do, I am not convinced that this would be the right place for him due to it being big and also would it be safe for him. I am just at my wits end regarding this. He is currently going to school, but with support in the morning and afternoon, with dropping him off and picking him up. I do not have much support at home and certainly no group that I can talk to regarding my frustration in terms of getting things right for my son and his future.
This really is a stressful time for you all and thinking of the future must be particularly difficult as it is hard to predict how things will develop. You have made the first step in liaising with school and this seems to have enabled some things to be put in place for your son, though obviously it is still difficult for you. In relation to college, our suggestion would be to keep options open. If possible, look at a range of schools and colleges your area, contact the SEN or student disability services, this may help you and your son assess where his needs will be best met. As he has an Education Health Care Plan he should be well placed to access any available support. Support for yourself is very important during this stressful time, Young Minds have a parents phone line: http://www.youngminds.org.uk/for_parents A number of parents we have contact with have found the phone line very helpful. They may also be able to put you in touch with a local support group.