"My beautiful child."

About: Fairhaven Care Centre - Toowoomba Mirikai Residential Rehabilitation Facility

(as a parent/guardian),

What happened for us was that our family helplessly looked on as my beloved child endured much suffering due to traumatic events prior to, during and beyond family separation.

My child spiraled into depression during their early teens, burying their feelings by forging ahead at school where my child was an outstanding student. Being the eldest of four children with a household barely managed by one adult my child's depression was disguised in our somewhat hectic schedule.

What ensued was that my child left home at fifteen years old, became entrenched in a mismanaged adolescent mental health system which resulted in great despair for our entire family.

The leap from various psychologists, prescriptions, hospitals, mental health wards to recreational drug and alcohol use was seemingly a natural progression for my over achieving, confused beautiful child.

It was when my child became so despairing and terrified by an incident involving their then partner that we knew we could at last intervene.

A dear friend of a friend was called upon to assist my chlid. As quickly as she knew how dire things had become she visited our home and had my child admitted to Fairhaven where my child underwent their initial detoxification. Albeit reluctantly post admission. The transfer to Mirikai was seemless, with no wait period. For this my family's gratitude is without bounds. We clearly did not have the experience or knowledge to manage this situation.

Thereafter I received at least four phone calls from my beautiful child who was suffering greatly pleading with me to collect them. My child told me that if I loved them I would not make them stay in such a place. My child called me manipulative and indeed I was. No-one was going to collect my child and deny them the opportunity to be the person I know them to be although it was clear they had lost sight of this knowledge. I responded to my child by saying it was because I loved them so dearly that I would not indeed collect them. This could have been seen as the the most difficult thing for a parent to do. However, I had been at the foot of the hospital bed after my child had made an attempt on their life. This was not the first time. It appeared that the nursing staff had lost hope in my child's survival. They explained to me that after my child had managed to pull through what they had ingested, my child was very lucky to be alive.

My child made it then and was going to make it through this program. I was going to be the most manipulative parent on the planet to keep my child alive and furthermore be that person I have always known my child to be.

It has seemed to my child for the longest time that I am the enemy. My ego has all but evaporated in this. I know I am my child's most adoring fan. I know my child is an incredible young person facing such adversity. I know my child has the strength of an army and I also know they will use this experience for the greater good. Not only being the best version of themselves but I know my child will positively influence a great many in their life as a result of this traumatic, challenging, confronting and blessed experience.

My boundless gratitude goes out to so many: Coralie for initiating my child's official recovery. For the entire team, staff and fellow residents at Mirikai who have met the challenge of looking beyond the blinding symptoms my child has endured and truly seeing the blinding potential in this amazing young person.

I now see a renewed hope in my child's face. My child is learning to manage their heightened emotions as well as engaging with those around them in a far more trusting manner than I have seen in the longest while. Their self belief has grown beyond ego and has become more authentic. My child is a success and is coming home soon.

I have no false expectations of how challenging this may be. I know my child is prepared as are we, as a family. For this I must again thank all the staff at Mirikai and a special mention to Matt who has phone counselled myself as well as sat with my mother through counselling sessions. She has been a tower of strength and support to me throughout.

Yours truly.

P. S. Thank you for hosting our family at last nights dinner. The dinner and experience far exceeded any expectations. It was truly delightful. The food and entertainment were outstanding. The residents and staff alike I hope are all very proud. You are all amazing.

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Responses

Response from Joel Porter, Associate Clinical Director, Lives Lived Well

picture of Joel Porter

Dear Famousfive,

Thank you kindly for taking the time to share your family's journey with us all. The team at Mirikai is not only the staff, it includes the clients and their families and significant others (when possible). Together we do the best we can to provide an opportunity for people to make changes and create a life beyond pain and suffering. The hard work your child and family continues to do is the kind of inspiration that motivates us to come to work every day. Making and maintaining change is hard work but the long-term pay offs are worth the effort.

Kind regards,

Joel

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