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What can you do as a parent when your child confides in you?

  • Stay calm, gather as much information as possible
  • Be clear what your child would like you to do - even if it is nothing. Allow them to have some control over it
  • Follow up on any conversation - make sure they know you haven't forgotten but don't labour the point
  • Make a note of anything you see that might be useful in identifying patterns
  • Be clear what you will need to do if you are concerned they are at risk of harming themselves or others
  • Contact a helpline, reputable website or local service like Families First or your GP to access more information if it would help. See suggested links below.
  • Don't be afraid to ask for help, much better to deal with issues early than let things escalate

Here are some useful websites:

  • YoungMinds is a national charity committed to improving the emotional wellbeing and mental health of young people
  • NHS Choices has information about mental health for young people, parents and carers
  • Kooth.com offers free, confidential online counselling support for children and young people in Hertfordshire aged 10-25
  • My CAMHS Choices has information and short films on mental health services 
  • Childline available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • BEAT eating disorders charity offers a helpline for young people and adults
  • MindEd for Families resources and hints and tips on child and adolescent emotional and mental health