Whenever a story about suicide or attempted suicide hits the media there is a mix of reactions. There are the people who don’t care, they see the suicidal as an inconvenience. There are those who have been there and understand the despair behind suicide. Then there are those in between. They don’t really mean to be offensive, but they are misinformed and they can’t possibly keep their comments to themselves.
I swear if I read one more meme about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) being a made up condition, I will scream. If I see one more post about kids with ADHD just needing a ‘kick up the arse’, I will explode.
ADHD is not just a child being naughty. It is a documented disability. It is not a new condition. In fact it was first added to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in 1980. At the risk of alarming anyone, that is nearly 40 years ago.
In September last year I received a letter to say that my Disability Support Pension was being reviewed. It was the day that I was dreading and it had come at an already stressful time for my family. I thought that I had missed out on being reviewed, but new measures introduced by the current government meant that I was caught in the net.Receiving this review brought up all of my familiar anxieties about whether or not I deserved the payment. Was I really sick enough? There were people worse off than me surely.
The online world of parenting has firmly shifted into the realm of being ‘real’. The more raw you are, the better. Where there used to be a martyr rivalry, there is now a competition for who can appear the most neglectful without actually harming your children.Women are applauded for admitting that they can’t do it all. On the surface this isn’t a bad thing. No one is perfect, and the belief that it is can be detrimental. Most of us are able to look at those who are being raw and say ‘that’s nice, but not for me.’ What about the women who are struggling? Does this movement really help them?
I have a controversial confession to make, I don’t always miss my son when I am not spending time with him. For a long time I felt guilty about it because I thought that it proved that I didn’t have a bond with my son. It sounds strange when I write it down, I’m feeling guilty about not feeling guilty.When I organise to have child free time I do it with people who I trust. I know that he is safe when I am not with him and that the people he is spending time with care about his well being. I wouldn’t leave him if they didn’t. So it suddenly occurred to me a couple of years ago, that I didn’t need to feel guilty when he was spending time with other people.