Jackie was only 17 when her son, Kieran, as born at only 26 weeks. She had to visit him in hospital and medical bulletins implied that if he did manage to survive he would be severely handicapped. Jackie was confused and overwhelmed by this experience – none of the professionals involved said anything encouraging to Jackie about her son. Kieran did survive and he grew into a boisterous and affectionate little boy with some global delay in his general development.
The issues which emerged in our support for Jackie were: her sense that she had no control in her child’s life; how to stand her ground with professionals by preparing herself for the appointments; supporting her through disappointing assessments such as a recent one by the school’s EP; the loss of the normal mother and baby bonding process and issues surrounding her turbulent relationship with Kieran’s father.
The role of the Learning Space worker has been to listen intensively and, using a solution focused approach, to help her access the strengths and skills she already has. Jackie’s goal was to be able to prioritise in order to regain control over her life and feel more confident in charge of Kieran.