Through the eyes of a carer for someone with a mental illness

‘First to blame, last to be heard’ again.


christmas treeI had a really lovely visit with Chris last night, we discussed his ward round, the plans he has for the future and maintaining a friendship not just for the children’s sake but because we still value each other’s company. It was nice to have a chat, hear him speak with hope and like he can see the future and that he wants to get well to be the best dad he can be. Honestly it was great to chat and it made me come away thinking I had taken a huge gamble as to which way ending our relationship could have gone and the risk seemed to have been so worth it.

I left feeling relieved and happy, asked to be let out of the ward and just as I reached the doors with the nursing assistant I said to her ‘sometimes the hardest thing is sometimes the best, I have noticed he seems to be doing better’ so she replied with ‘so have we.’ I explained my decision to take a step back in the hope that Chris would be able to start trying to help him so she said ‘do you really think that? You seemed to have perpetrated it.’ I just looked at her struggling for words and struggling to stop the tears from falling once again down my face when she turned around and said ‘oh sorry does that seem harsh?’ Really do you need to ask me that? REALLY? I told her just to let me out and I burst into tears.

Does she think I woke up not caring one day? Does she think I walked away happily without second thought? Does she think I ever wanted this to happen or that I didn’t do my damndest for years on end because I cared and loved him? Does she really think I woke up every day wanting to make Chris ill? That I nearly killed myself in the process because all I was ever trying to do was care for him and stop him from killing himself?

I fell to bits in the stair well, I walked across the hospital grounds to the Christmas tree and sat by the fountain, the rain began to fall on me but I didn’t care. I stared into the twinkling lights on the Christmas tree, thinking about what this woman had just said, thinking of the girls and Chris and wondering if my Grandad was ok in heaven with Grandma, I thought ahead to Christmas and cried. Really? She made me feel for all these months and years that I had done nothing but bring myself to the point where I wasn’t going to end up in hospital with Chris but simply not here at all that she then put all the blame on me for him being unwell.

Part of my decision to walk away was because of how I ended up being made to feel by staff on the ward, you have to remember that I might be hurting too, that I might have my own personal battles as well and sometimes when that was forgotten it got to the point where I couldn’t cope stepping foot on the ward. It is a pretty sad state of affairs when that happens. As I walked away last night, part of that confirmed I had done the right thing, another part of it devastated me, I will still be visiting Chris, I will still support him, I will still care and my girls need him regardless but what she said will more than likely and sadly stay with me forever.


Author: acarerseyes

I am a mum to four gorgeous girls, and a carer to my former partner of eight years, Chris who has a mental illness, BPD. I blog my experiences.. life is tough! We live in Greater Manchester, UK.

3 thoughts on “‘First to blame, last to be heard’ again.

  1. The person that said that to you is an idiot. Whilst some mental health workers can be fantastic, others can be totaly un-feeling, judgemental, crass, and worst, destructive. I think sometimes they become hardened by the work they do. Try to banish what she said from your mind, its not worth another second of your thoughts .Rise above it and focus on your girls and the positive development now with Chris and for all your futures. Look after yourself. x

  2. That was a terrible thing for her to say. I honestly can’t think of any other situation in which someone would think that was an appropriate thing to say to someone in your circumstances.

  3. I have just discovered your blog and it has made me stop and catch my breath with the things you describe. Thank you for making me stop and think. Take care and trust your instincts.

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