Brave? Or stupid?

I feel a fool.

Sharing my journey (anonymously in wider circles) was supposed to be helpful to others; whether that be people in a similar situation or those that are grateful for a better understanding of this condition. Indeed, I know it has been helpful for some people; there have been wonderful comments and numerous private messages of gratitude and support, which have meant more to me than I can describe. I have been thanked for being brave and courageous enough to not hide it away and to get people talking about it. That in itself has felt a very positive thing to come out of what I am currently experiencing which is of course a negative and difficult situation; it has also been more beneficial to me than I could have ever anticipated.

However, of course I have felt vulnerable and exposed. Partly because feeling like this accentuates feelings of low self-worth and anxiety anyway. But I was prepared for it to be public for the greater good as well as my own therapy; as always, thinking how I can help other people. Naive, it seems.

Unfortunately, somebody has seen fit to anonymously refer us to children’s services. This is a huge blow that my family and I could have done without. I’ve just had a good morning when I got out of the house for a couple of hours on my own and felt pretty good about making more progress. The last thing I needed on arrival back home was this letter coming through the door.

Our children are well-loved and happy. They want for nothing. OK, the television is on quite a lot when I am on my own with them. Does that really make me such a bad parent? I have done what I have to do to cope. And of course they have tantrums; they are aged 3 and 1!

Since this happened to me, my husband has made sure that I don’t have to worry about childcare. Every moment when they are not at nursery, he has covered for at least several weeks to allow me time and quiet to heal and recover. He is an excellent father and we have a wonderful network of family and friends around us who have rallied round to help too.

Whoever has done this, would you have done it if I was unwell with a broken limb? If you thought we needed some help, why didn’t you ask us? Surely if it was well-meaning, you would have communicated with us directly? This makes it feel like we are both deemed unfit parents. Feeling very betrayed. Thanks for nothing; you’ve made everything worse. I now feel like I want to go back to hiding away again. I feel utterly wretched; a major step back.

I have been naive and stupid. The stigma lives on.

Edited to add 27.9.17: It turns out it was via the NSPCC website where somebody wanted to help support me. From my suspicion about who is responsible, writing the blogs and sharing them publicly wasn’t really anything to do with it. There was no suggestion there was concern about the children or our parenting. I still don’t understand why choose this route rather than talking to us directly though. It caused unnecessary angst. I would ask for social services input at the drop of a hat if and when we needed it; there is nothing with doing this as far as I am concerned. That was never the issue. It is the underhand method used that is upsetting.

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