Melanie’s story offers hope to other young women in our care
Melanie’s story is familiar to many of the young women in our care. She was referred to our project at Andrew Provan House (APH) due to homelessness. At that time, she had a two-year-old child and was pregnant.
For the past two years Melanie had been forced to move from several different addresses, which had a detrimental impact on her mental health. When she arrived, she was very anxious and afraid she would be moved on yet again. As her mental health deteriorated, so did her relationship with her children’s father. He found it difficult to understand and couldn’t support her. There were many arguments, which finally ended their relationship.
As she settled into APH, Melanie began counselling sessions for her anxiety. For the sake of their children, both Melanie and her ex-partner agreed to find a way to manage their relationship so they could share parenting responsibilities.
One of the main sources of Melanie’s anxiety was not being in a safe place to bring up her children. She also lacked any support and help, fearing that she didn’t have the skills or knowledge to be a good parent. Her own family had rejected her when she met her ex-partner, who, due to religious and cultural differences, was not accepted by them.
Living at APH has given Melanie the security she needed and supported her in developing skills and confidence as a parent. Her child is in the nursery, and Melanie attends mother and baby groups. The relationship with her ex-partner has improved and he is being more understanding and supportive. He visits her and his daughter regularly.
Melanie is taking positive steps to becoming more independent. She has grown in confidence and is gaining the knowledge she needs to manage her own life and that of her children. She is keen to pursue further education, to learn new skills. Melanie has become a popular resident, providing emotional support for others in the house. She is keen to share her own experience to help her fellow residents, offering hope to other women who have suffered similar traumas.