By Suzanne Alderson
As anyone who is the parent of a child with mental health issues will know, it can be a lonely and terrifying time. Your child clings to you or pushes you away, and you feel a huge responsibility to find answers to something you never imagined you’d be dealing with. When normal life and school attendance become impossible and you fear for your child’s safety, friends and family don’t always understand. Partners are often at odds with each other over the best course of action. Support services are stretched and hard to access.

When we interviewed Suzanne Alderson, author of Never Let Go, a few months back, the response was phenomenal- teenage mental health is sadly a major issue and Suzanne really struck a chord. She founded the charity group Parenting Mental Health following the attempted suicide of her daughter Issy and in this book she details her family’s devastating ordeal and how Issy ultimately came to get the help she needed and live a happy and productive life. Suzanne, now a trained mental health first aider, an ambassador of the mental health charity Kaleidoscope Plus Group and a regular speaker on mental health, has written Never Let Go as a handbook for the thousands of parents going through similar experiences.

Suzanne touches on all your worst fears and struggles – because she’s been through them herself. The tendency to wonder where you went wrong and how you missed the signs. The judgement – from others and even from yourself – over what your child is going through. Your hopes for your child versus the reality. The impact on your own mental health and the fact that you may have to give up pretty much everything while you are partnering your child towards recovery.

Buy this book for anyone worried about the mental health of a young person in their life. It’s full of good sense and calm reassurance and the chapter detailing the help available for troubled young people and how to access it provides answers when you feel like you have nowhere else to turn.
Marina Gask

Looking for expert advice? The Audrey Members’ Club is a whole world of support, coaching and expertise for women through self-employment, changing careers, running a business or launching one. Join us to kickstart your future, whatever that may be.