Since our parent support service started 5 years ago we have come a long way and learned an incredible amount as to what it takes to support parents in crisis. Parents have taught us how important it is to be resilient, consistent, assertive and yet to do this with love and compassion for their young people. While we have put in place many different methods of support, one of the most simple and yet effective is when parents support each other at times of need.
This peer support has been demonstrated on a number of occasions recently, and no more typically than when Mrs X came to us in some distress. Her son was refusing school, being aggressive and destructive at home and at the same time there was pressure from school and county to get him to school or face consequences. An impossible situation for any distressed parent, facing physical abuse from her son for trying to get him to go to school or statutory consequences from the local authority if he doesn’t attend.
When she came to us we talked through her situation and discussed alternatives. One which she hadn’t considered was to home educate as her son was refusing even to consider any formal education establishment. She had ruled this out before thinking this would be outside her capability. To consider this option further, the support team were able to set up a meeting with another parent ,who was well versed in home education and who very generously gave her time to discuss options and the reality of how it works.
At this stage Mrs X hasn’t yet decided on the way forward but she now has options and choices where she had fear of the unknown and whatever her choice we will be there to support her for however long it takes.