Parenting a child with mental health issues

Parenting a child with mental health issues

Catherine Jackson


  • Description
  • Author
  • Info
  • Reviews


Many adopted and looked after children experience particular health issues or other difficulties, sometimes due to their early experiences of loss and lack of care. This book focuses on mental health issues. If you are looking to adopt a child, this guide will give you practical and realistic information on what this condition may mean for your child, along with their symptoms, prognosis and treatment.

This book provides expert knowledge coupled with facts, figures and guidance presented in a straightforward and accessible style.

Adopters also describe what it is like to parent children with mental health issues, sharing their parenting experience and offering useful advice.

This book is part of CoramBAAF’s Parenting Matters series which explores many of the health conditions commonly diagnosed in looked after children.

Who is this book for?

A useful book for adopters, those thinking about adopting, foster carers, social work practitioners and all those involved in the care of looked after children. The combination of expert information and first-hand experience will help readers gain knowledge and understanding and make informed decisions.

What you will find in this book

The first half of the book examines a range of mental health issues, including exploration of nature/nurture, the effect of family upbringing, diagnosis, the neurobiology of mental health issues and stress, and where to get help for your child and family.

In the second half, a range of adopters describe their experiences of parenting children with mental health issues, and how this affected, and continues to affect, day-to-day family life.

‘For several months he didn’t have any attacks and I thought, whatever it was, it would be OK now he was in a settled environment. I had this very optimistic view of things. When it first happened, it was quite a shock. He became like another person, quite violent and aggressive, but only ever towards himself and his possessions, not other people. The most disturbing and upsetting thing was you didn’t feel he was emotionally present during these attacks. You couldn’t talk to him, he wouldn’t respond to you.’

'In fact, Gordon didn’t have temper tantrums, as Jeannie discovered: they were early symptoms of what would later be diagnosed as bipolar disorder.’


Catherine Jackson:
Catherine Jackson is a freelance writer and editor specialising in mental health and social care.