A Different Life
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College members' price: £32.40
Published: Mar 2006
1 hr DVD & CD-ROM
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This is a training film
designed for use by staff involved in the care of parents with
mental illness and their children.
As many as 175,000 young people in the UK are
involved in caring for an adult with mental illness. These children
usually worry about their parents and feel largely unsupported.
They may blame themselves for the illness or fear that they will
also ‘catch’ it. Children with a parent with mental illness often
fall through the professional net and are seen as nobody’s
responsibility. Nothing is explained to them, and they often
receive no help at all to deal with the effects of the parent’s
illness. These children need to be seen and heard.
All professionals working with adults with mental illness need to
stop and think about the needs of these young people. This training
package provides practical and creative suggestions on how
professionals can work effectively with children and parents and
encourages collaboration of the many agencies involved. It can also
be used in conjunction with the Department of Health’s Crossing
Bridges (1998) resource. The accompanying CD-ROM includes a
supporting training pack and a copy of the College’s council report
Patients as Parents (CR105)*.
The film is clearly divided into two main sections. Part I shows
children and parents relating their various experiences. Part II
focuses on solutions and the ways that professionals can help. The
stories are interspersed with comments from experts. The key points
of each sub-section are summarised in text on the screen.
Part I begins with an example of a referral which includes a
discussion of what questions ought to be asked. Children and
parents relate their experiences and opinions. The young people
speak very frankly on what they believe is needed from
professionals, both at home and when visiting parents in
Part II first examines ways in which professionals can help, again
with contributions from young people themselves. Tips are given for
talking with children, both on their own and in the presence of
parents or the whole family. Finally, details are shown about the
Kidstime Workshops – a special project being carried out
in the Camden area which uses play-writing and drama to encourage
children to express themselves.
The 32 page Training
Patients as Parents
(CR105)*: This 32
page council report from the Royal College of Psychiatrists (2002)
addresses the needs and safety of children whose parents have
mental illness. It discusses and presents practice guidelines for a
range of different areas such as parental self-harm and parental
* = CR105 has now been
withdrawn. It is replaced by CR164: Parents as patients: Supporting the
needs of patients who are parents and their
children which can be downloaded and read
free-of-charge (January 2011).
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Please note that this price includes VAT at 20%.
This is applicable for multimedia products (DVDs, CD-ROMs, audio
CDs and tapes).