“It's easy to burn out. Caring for a family member is not like working from 9-5. It goes on day and night, it’s non-stop. That's why self-care is so important. ” – Jo

Overview

It can be challenging having a parent with a mental health condition. Family relationships may be more stressful, and you may find that your parent is unable to be there for you when they are mentally unwell. 

In some cases it can feel like there’s a role reversal going on, with you caring for your parent(s) and managing the household, either on your own or with your sibling(s). This can mean excess chores, cooking, shopping and housework, and sometimes even administering medication. You may be missing out on some of your own development, whether it's social time with friends, school activities, space for yourself, or emotional support.

If you have not told someone about your situation yet, reaching out for help can be a good first step towards learning how to cope. Families in this situation benefit from having extra support - like counselling and community assistance. There are support services and carer organisations that can help you and your other family members handle difficult emotions and experiences, extra housework, school or work responsibilities, and more.

It is important to look after yourself as well. The resources below have information and advice. We also have more information on support for carers and how to support someone.

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Page last updated 28th September 2017