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Mental health trust CQC: Mum ‘scared to have more children’ and student told she could ‘manage’

PUBLISHED: 08:50 28 November 2018 | UPDATED: 08:50 28 November 2018

Ipswich teenager Beth Nunn has slammed Suffolk mental health services Picture: BETH NUNN

Ipswich teenager Beth Nunn has slammed Suffolk mental health services Picture: BETH NUNN

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A young Ipswich mother under the care of Suffolk mental health services revealed she is scared to have more children after an 18-month battle with postnatal depression.

One Ipswich mother, who has asked to remain anonymous, said she is scared to have more children after a battle with post-natal depression and a One Ipswich mother, who has asked to remain anonymous, said she is scared to have more children after a battle with post-natal depression and a "lack of support" from mental health services Picture: CINDYGOFF/GETTYIMAGES/ISTOCKPHOTO

The mother-of-one, who is not being named, has criticised Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust as it came under intense scrutiny following a third failed inspection report.

In late 2016 the mum, in her 20s, self-referred to the Suffolk wellbeing service run by NSFT.

And despite being told she would have a CBT session within 12 weeks, she claims to have actually waited eight months.

“It’s really terrifying,” she said of her ordeal.

“You feel like you have no safety net.

“When I eventually saw a therapist she was brilliant, but by the second session she felt I didn’t meet the threshold for needing the therapy anymore.

“My friends have said I don’t appear unwell, and that’s so true.

“I’m not sat shivering in the corner but I wasn’t able to cope.

“I suffered with panic attacks for about 18 months and had a young daughter, I felt lost and it was a real struggle.

“From a mental health service point of view I feel I was on my own for most of that. Family and friends were great.”

Meanwhile, a struggling Ipswich student also in the care of NSFT was told by staff she could “manage” her condition despite feeling like she was deteriorating, it has been claimed.

Former Northgate sixth form pupil Beth Nunn initially reached out for help in 2016.

But everything came to a head this summer when the 19-year-old found herself admitted to Woodlands in Ipswich after two attempted overdoses.

Her mother Gillian claims the teenager was “thrown from pillar to post”, and added: “It was the worst time of our lives, a living hell.

At Woodlands staff would take Beth aside and say ‘Is your mum making you anxious’ when she would then reply ‘If it wasn’t for my mum, I wouldn’t be here’.

“They said Beth was able to ‘manage’ but that couldn’t have been further from the truth.”

Now studying at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, the teenager added: “It was so frustrating. I didn’t feel supported at all.

“I only had four cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) sessions when I was meant to have 12.

“People kept cancelling and not turning up, there were so many excuses.

“I also went to an emotional support group but I didn’t feel like it was enough.”

NSFT were approached for further comment on the above cases but at the time of publication had not responded.

However, trust representatives did say they were “sorry and disappointed to learn of cases where people believe the service has fallen short”, and invited the pair to contact NSFT’s Patient Advice and Liaison Service.

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