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Emotional support for parents

Being a parent comes with so many mixed emotions and if you're riding an emotional rollercoaster, you wouldn't be alone in feeling overwhelmed at times!

Thankfully there are lots of amazing family support groups that can help parents, no matter their age, to work through these emotions and the daily challenges that little ones introduce to our lives. Most importantly, remember there is no shame in asking for help if you're struggling with your mental health and support will always be available if you reach out for it.

If you are need urgent support for your mental health, call 111 or visit 111 Online to talk to an advisor and be connected with local support services. The direct mental health helpline for Nottinghamshire is 0808 196 3779 and operates 24 hours a day but you can also call 116 123 to talk to the Samaritans on their 24/7 listening line for non-judgmental, confidential support whilst you wait for an NHS call back. The Nottinghamshire Crisis Sanctuaries in Beeston and Worksop also provide an option to call in for face to face support for anyone 18+ who feels they are nearing mental health crisis and need some support.

Your designated health visitor is also a great contact to chat to if your struggling. They'll know you and your child and can offer strategies and support that reflects your unique circumstances. You'll find their contact details in your child's 'red book' or you can reach out to Nottinghamshire's Children Centre Service who also provide social groups for local parents to come together, discuss their experiences as parents and build their own peer support networks. If you're based in Nottingham City, also check out Small Steps, Big Changes who have an excellent online knowledge hub and run free events and activities to help you get out and socialise with other parents in the area.

Alongside local services, many national charities have resources, listening lines and communities that can help you take control of your mental health. Action for children have a brilliant free parenting coach service available through their website where you can talk through any challenges you might be facing and be signposted to support. They also have many detailed support articles for parents which can be found here. If you're a single parent, the charity Gingerbread have lots of dedicated resources, that take into account the additional challenges of lone parenting.

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