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  • Mary

Supporting your child if your become unwell

Updated: Oct 27, 2019

Children thrive when they have access to supportive relationships. Having multiple supportive and caring relationships can rely on is ideal. As a parent, you can also benefit from these relationships if you were to become unwell, be it from a physical or mental illness.


This article will help you to consider your child's relationships or support network. You'll also identify the role that these relationships play in supporting your child and your family. Consider doing this for all your children and involving another family member and or your child when thinking about these supports.


Take note of your child's key relationships

Think about the key relationships in your child's life, the people they spend the most time with, those that bring them the most joy and happiness. It might be worth writing theses down.


Consider the roles played by these relationships

if you need help get photos of the most important relationships or people in your child's life. These could include members of your family, teachers, friends, and relatives. These relationships would serve as key to starting to identify your child's support network.


Create a drawing, story or worksheet for your child

Help your child to know those important people they can reach out to if they want to or need to. Having it down on a piece of paper might help them. Ask them to keep it in a safe place.


Ideally, this is something to do with your child. If it is not possible, you can do it on your own and talk to your child when you're done. You can get your child's opinion by asking the following questions:


If you were worried or sad, who's the one person you could talk to?


Is there anyone who would be willing to take you to or from school if dad and mum could not?


If your mum or your dad is sick, who's the one person that could look after you?


Who are the people you trust? Who do you feel safe with?


Who do you feel happy around other than dad and mum?


If you're in school without lunch, who do you think could help you out?


Strengthen your child's support network

Spend time with the other people who support and care for your child. Let them know that you value the relationship that they have with your child. Allow your child to know that you approve of his or her relationship with their support network. Encourage and support your child's to spend time with these people, get to know them better and feel more comfortable around them. Allow the people on your child's support network to get to know your child and spend time with them even when you're well. This would help you feel more comfortable with them taking on a caring role if you were to become unwell.


Emergency contacts

Create a list of emergency contacts, people that your child can call in a time of need. Numbers you could include are other family members, school and their best friend's parents number.