You see, when I’m asked, “how did you break the cycle”, of repeated generations in your family, where the kids ended up in the Care System – I am often, stumped for words.
How did I break the cycle? Here are my thoughts:
Nurtured by both the community and the decent Social Workers
I’ve lost track of the numbers of both residential and area social workers, who provided me with the attention, love, and empathy – not to mention boundaries, work ethic and kindness. The social workers, teachers, cleaners in the children’s homes etc, were my role models.
The ability to reach out when help was needed:
Now, this is a big one! We know, as Care Leavers, that allowing ourselves to become vulnerable is dangerous. There is always someone bad waiting to take advantage, mistaking your kindness for weakness. So to reach out, as an adult, and say “actually, I’m not coping”, is excruciatingly painful and scary. “Expect the worst” ya little head is telling you. However, I can openly admit, and thank god I can, that I had to reach out for help when faced with addiction that I just couldn’t conquer on my own. Do you know what the consequences were……. None!
Instead I was offered the opportunity to learn who I was, where I came from, and finally lay the past at peace. (Although, not to give you false hope, the past is still there, the difference being, I have strategies!).
And lastly, Therapy:
By this, I do not mean, in any way shape or form, counselling. I’m afraid, me and counselling don’t gel. I mean specialist therapy, with therapists who understand abuse AND the Care System.
And of course – looking at my beautiful granddaughter, I can finally relax into my belief, that, yes, I have broken the vicious cycle.
Love Jenny Aka Hackneychild x