Following news yesterday that a pregnant Italian woman had her baby forcibly removed by caesarean section by Essex Social Services and put up for adoption, the mental health charity Mind comments on issues around parenting and mental health.
Mind’s Chief Executive Paul Farmer said:
"Many people will be surprised to learn that someone could have their rights taken away in this distressing manner. While this is an extreme and unusual set of circumstances, mental health legislation is incredibly powerful. Every day it can mean people lose their liberty and their basic right to make decisions for themselves. It should always be used with care and people must be treated with dignity and respect at all times.
"We know that over half of people living with a severe and enduring mental health problem have at least one child under the age of 18. They may face added pressures, particularly if they need to spend time in hospital, but it is perfectly possible to be a kind and loving parent while managing a mental health problem.
"Parents with a mental health problem can sometimes worry about struggling more than other parents and not being able to give their children the care they need. They may also be concerned about the stigma that they and their family might endure. It’s important that this story doesn’t stop parents seeking the help and support they need."
For more information about parenting and mental health visit the Mind website