Having been involved with this Carers Support Group for over twenty five years I feel it is time to put pen to paper and share my views more widely.
The media claim that in the U.K. at least one in three people will suffer some kind of Mental Health issue. Everyone will know at least one person who is being, or has been treated for this illness.
I feel that very few people, including some Mental Health Professionals, just do not realise how difficult it is becoming a carer of a loved one who is suddenly or slowly struck with one of these conditions. In some cases it can be more than one condition.
In Jan 1993 our family was partially destroyed when our son David died after falling from a moving escalator in Hemel Hempstead Shopping Centre. (Please see my earlier blog containing the article Hazel and I wrote last year, ‘Remembering David’ )
Our group, originally formed as the ’Tring and Berkhamsted Mental Health Support group’, was changed in 2000 to ‘Dacorum and District’ so we could encompass a bigger area. This was suggested by our local N.H.S in recognition of our involvement. Last year we changed again,
recommended by the membership, to ‘Caring for Carers in Dacorum’ a name easier to cope with.
The name may have changed but the purpose of the group has remained the same. A carer’s support organisation, but now enlarged by many other aspects including Social and Lobbying activities. I believe our group has been a help and benefit to a number of carers over the years. Our membership varies from year to year, and currently has a truly caring feel. Attending the group has enabled me to increase my knowledge of mental Illness and to understand the workings of the Trust which I have found to be far more complicated than I could ever have imagined.
For people new to Mental Health Care, there really is hope out there in the form of Information, togetherness and Wellbeing. Without the care of one another, the world can seem a very lonely place. Come and join us for support during your loved one’s recovery!
Dick Lovelace (Co-Chair)