Suffolk mother Anne Humphrys speaks before House of Lords and launch of Association for Young People’s Health’s ‘There for you’ report

Mental health campaigner Anne Humphrys

Mental health campaigner Anne Humphrys - Credit: Archant

A Suffolk mother has spoken in the House of Lords about the challenges she has faced as the parent of a young person with mental health issues to highlight the need for more support.

Anne Humphrys, from Debenham, was asked by the Association for Young People’s Health (AYPH) to attend the launch of its report There for you, which presents new research on the difficulties faced by parents.

The research found many families felt they were waiting too long for treatment, providers did not believe there was a problem with their child and felt excluded by the agencies who were supposed to be helping.

Mrs Humphrys, who helped set up Parents and Carers Together (PACT) charity to support families with children with mental ill health, said she was “very pleased” to be part of the research. “It was an absolute honour to be asked to speak at the launch of this report in the House of Lords and to meet Baroness Massey who was incredibly sincere and supportive of this work,” she added.

“I simply spoke about my experiences as a parent of a young person with mental health issues and the importance of having a network of support and the founding of PACT.

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“On the way to London the importance of this work was emphasised as I received the tragic news that a dear friend of mine’s son who also experienced mental health issues had lost his life.

“The role of parents and carers should never be underestimated.”

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Baroness Massey, Patron of AYPH said: “Its heart breaking to read of the pain and suffering so many parents go through in trying to help their children when they are in crisis.

“As this research so starkly shows they feel both disempowered and blamed. Parents just want to find ways to feel they are doing all they can to support their son or daughter, and that services are there for them and their children. With mental health services under so much pressure we must address ourselves to how parents can become a key part of the solution.”

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