When filling out a survey recently it raised the question “Should families with children who are diagnosed with rare conditions be offered counselling at the time of diagnosis?“
As a result of my own experience living with post natal depression I would have to say a huge YES!!! I lived the first six years of my daughters life after she was diagnosed with a rare metabolic condition undiagnosed and living in a daze. I still can’t remember a lot of those years other than going from one appointment to another, waking up each morning and just trying to get through the day. My family suffered as a result of my suffering.
I look back now and believe things would have been greatly different if I had been given counselling or some support from the date of her diagnosis. Not just me but to our entire family. We have all had our own struggles with her diagnosis.
It should be arranged for all family members and should be supplied as a free service. I wouldn’t like to think that others have to go through what I did. Since being diagnosed, treated and coming out the other side a much happier, stronger women who lives and enjoys every day, I can see the importance of counselling and early diagnosis of Post Natal Depression. If you can see a family member or friend struggling don’t be scared to offer your support.
I didn’t understand when I was first asked whether I had grieved for my daughter. I still remember asking “Why, she’s alive?” it seemed stupid. Then once explained about why we needed to grieve for the child we expected and didn’t get, it all made sense. This was when my life started to turn around.
I use my daughter and what she has to go through everyday to inspire me to make a difference and be a better, stronger person myself. My family are my inspiration.