Written by Robyn   

I was trapped! in some ways that child in me always will be. There was no escape from my schizophrenic mother and there is always that sense deep down in my psyche that part of me will always be there-in that house-where emotions were petrified where the horror surrounded you with the night and any unimagined nightmare could and would come to life at any rapidly approaching second. I am fifty now and that training in hyper-vigilance served me well in dealing with a child of my own that never slept- staying awake and alert for days, months and years-just try me. Thank goodness that my baby grew up to be seemingly stable, intelligent, successful and happy. Of course you are petrified again that you can’t protect your own baby/child from experiencing any fear-that is an unbearable thought that they might suffer the way you did. The world never quite remains real-because you always carry that "other" world with you-that world for me where my mother was trying to kill my father with a carving knife-and by association me-because he was my lifeline. In a way I was already dead because you are dead inside when one moment there is someone whose mind is so disturbed they are rocking, scratching the wall, there are police, ambulances, or worse still no-one to help-and then-then you are shuffled out to school where you pretend all is as it should be. I know how that feels, it feels like you have no voice, you cannot be heard and what would you say if you could anyway-there are no words to express the heartbreak, the cavern of madness, the emptiness and panic you feel. My heart goes out to any child living with a parent who is mentally ill, there are those of us who have walked in your shoes-who were alone in that world. Life has bought me many beautiful wonderful, magnificent experiences but you don't want to hear that when you are still trapped in the horror-you only want to hear that yes I know -I know it seems like the days, the years will never pass, that you are desperate, truly desperate to grow and escape but mostly for now that someone will "do something" to save you.

Victoria Australia