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Carers Week: Bethany’s story

8 June 2015

To mark Carers Week 2015, we’re looking at how the challenges faced by young carers effect their own lives.

lynne&bethanyBethany Hodgson, who receives support from Tyne & Wear Crossroads, sees caring for her mother and younger brother as only part of the challenge.

“It’s a split job, my mum would share duties with regards to my brother, but sometimes I’m not well enough myself. For me, my own health issues have to be put back, as my mum and my brother’s are the priority.

“If I spoke about my home situation to people outside of Crossroads they wouldn’t understand, and be like ‘You shouldn’t be doing that’. If you speak to somebody here they will understand. We all help to support each other by giving each other the chance to be normal.

“I’ve probably got more friends through here than anywhere else. Through school or college you might have one or two, I’ve got friends, from here, who I still stay in touch with 14 years later.

“For the past four years I’ve been in limbo – do I contact the younger carers I’ve known all my life, or do I go to a new place if I needed the help? My own mental health has suffered.

“There are times that life gets too stressful at home, and I just feel guilty if I’m trying to do something normal and my mother or my brother fall ill. A couple of weeks ago, I actually burst into tears, the next day I was out at Crossroads. I spoke to my support worker and he told me: ‘You can’t control everything; you don’t know who’s going to get bad when’.

“By getting back into support with Crossroads I know I can go somewhere and I know they can help me”.

After delaying applying for several years, Bethany is now at the start of university and is now a part of Tyne & Wear Crossroads ‘Older Experts’ panel. This is a group of older carers who have received help, sometimes for multiple years, to help advise and guide the wider group’s actions.

Tyne & Wear Crossroads is currently supported by a three year Big Lottery Fund Reaching Communities grant of £499,113.

Group of careers at a table

Bethany and the other Crossroads careers

One Comment leave one →
  1. 3 July 2015 10:05 am

    Reblogged this on Sincere Blog.

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