I’ve been working on this piece for a good few months now….and I am so grateful for everyone’s contribution. It takes a lot to talk about having your children removed, and that’s not purely because of how traumatic it is – there‘s also so much stigma surrounding it. We often think that a mother must be really bad if her children are taken into care, right? From what I’ve discovered, that’s a bit of a myth…
From chatting to two women (who wish to remain anonymous due to the shame and stigma that sadly surrounds the topic) it’s clear to see that women can be almost held to account for the domestic abuse and subsequent coping strategies that they and their families may experience. The fear and anxiety involved in trying to keep themselves and their children safe and well when dealing with abuse is something I can barely comprehend.
That’s why I was so pleased to be able to write this In Focus piece for Metro thanks to the support of features director, Claie Wilson. It’s important to really look at these complex cases in more detail – headlines are never enough and the fact that a child has been removed should never be an automatic mark against a mother. These situations are tragic. And if we can raise awareness, even if just to break stigma, it can make at least a small difference to someone who is going through an unthinkable struggle.
In addition to the contributors sharing their personal stories, I was able to interview Larissa Povey of Sheffield Hallam University and Laura Seebohm from national charity, Changing Lives. Both are doing fantastic work in this area and well worth looking up.
To read the full piece in Metro, click here
You can also watch a theatre performance from Open Clasp based on women’s experiences in this area. All three episodes of Sugar are available to watch now on BBC iPlayer.