How often do children say they’re fine, okay, alright, when asked how they are? When they tell us that all is well, when they put on a smile, do they really mean it?
‘Poem to a parent’ is such a powerful reminder that we need to take the time to actually listen to what our children are telling us and see through any facade.
We all have mental health, just as we all have physical health. 1 in 6 young people aged 5 to 16 will suffer from poor mental health – it can affect anyone, but many young people feel they need to pretend nothing is wrong.
This short film was created based on a poem by seventeen year old Abi Srinatharan from Slough, and was turned into a film by Katie Bonham. It was developed by NHS Frimley CCG and Youth Engagement Slough (YES) partners.
Poem to a Parent
With a fake smile through the white lies,
with hidden emotions, to the teary eyes,
I sit and pretend it’s all fine.
This is just a facade.
My mother asked me, how was your day,
and I reply the same three words every day. It was okay.
Not that she seemed to care but I don’t think she’s aware.
that it’s all just a facade.
I feel like a burden. Needing help with every little thing.
No longer able to look after even my own basic human needs.
I’m internally screaming, losing my mind. Externally, I’m doing just fine.
But it’s all just a facade.
So, parents, mothers, fathers, carers.
Learn to help recognise when your child is hidden in the darkness.
Allow a little light in, by sitting down and asking them,
is it all just a facade?
Lend an ear to listen and to educate yourself.
Allow yourself to learn if they’ve had to drag themselves through a journey of eternal blackness.
If they open up, give them some aid, be their guiding light, as they will be afraid,
because it all could have just been a facade.