Gransnet forums


Don't know where to turn

(41 Posts)
greatmama Wed 02-Sep-20 09:54:46

My 28 year old grandaughter has just had a baby. She's suffered from depression for some years and I was worried how she was going to cope but things have got really bad. The baby is now a week old and the birth was horrendous. Staff made lots of errors resulting in mum and baby having serious infections. Baby cannot leave hospital and consequently mum can't either. I think my grandaughter is having a breakdown. She's stuck in a cupboard of a room which is very hot and airless with a crying baby and we can't visit due to Covid. I've tried speaking to staff but it's hopeless - they say they'll get back but never do. My grandaughter doesn't want to tell them how bad she's feeling because she's worried they'll take the baby away from her. My son (her dad) lives away and her mum is not helpful. I feel so sick with worry. Advice please?

greengreengrass Thu 03-Sep-20 09:33:48

me the takeaway that is, not the baby of course!

polnan Thu 03-Sep-20 09:36:58

this confidential thing... ie. NHS people, hospital and GP`s, it is my understanding, that if the "patient" puts it in writing, check the wording required, then that person can authorised the NHS people to speak to the designated person about all their medical treatment etc.

ie. your gd can authorise that they do speak and tell you of her medical treatment etc.

My experience of this was my husband! He had to put it in writing that the GP and hospital people would tell me everything about his illnesses and treatment.

greengreengrass Thu 03-Sep-20 09:37:08

Sorry just re read this and realised you are the grandmother.

I would say nothing wrong with phoning AiMS and or la leche league and saying that - and just discuss your fears and ask for support about what they think is the best way to help currently..

At least it is someone to talk to and there must be many people in your positon i.e not able to visit due to Covid. They are probably used to it.

Phloembundle Thu 03-Sep-20 09:47:47

Keep pestering until they get fed up and do what you want. It is the only way.

Pippa22 Thu 03-Sep-20 10:52:11

Although these suggestions are well meant and helpful we need to remember that the new mother is the granddaughter of Greatmama who is not really in the position to seek advice or help whilst the new mum is in hospital. She has hospital staff to care for her, possibly some support groups, there must be a dad for the baby , is he absent ? The new mum has two parents, that’s quite a lot of people to potentially help. Great Grandma can only do so much and contacting G.P. Or Social Worker would breach confidentiality and anyway not be appropriate. I am sure it is very worrying, Greatmama but sure you will be able to be more involved when mum and baby get home, if they want help.

donna1964 Thu 03-Sep-20 11:30:11

If you are not happy with any of the services supporting your Grandaughter you can contact NHS ENGLAND on 0300-311 22 33 or england.c[email protected]
Any family member, carer can ask for advice, raise concerns or make a complaint. NHS England holds some clout and whoever will know you mean if your not being listened too, calls not being returned etc pick a phone up to these people... they hold more clout than PALS who these days are another service whereby they are not picking phones up and you are having to leave a message and lucky if you get a call back. Read up on NHS England they are really good.

icanhandthemback Thu 03-Sep-20 11:44:25

Without meaning to sound dismissive, are you sure that you are not panicking about this? You don't say how things have got really bad so it is difficult to tell. You have alerted the staff there is a historic problem so they will be looking to ensure that your grandaughter is safe with the baby.
I know it is tough but encourage your grandaughter to think positively. She is in the right place if anything goes wrong, each day passing is a day nearer to the end of this terrible time, etc. A week is a very short time in the life of her child and she will have years to enjoy her little one once they are over this hurdle.
If your grandaughter is able to, encourage her to go for a quick walk, whilst baby is asleep, so the endorphins are helping although I appreciate it might be difficult with C-19.
If there are more specific reasons you are worried then you can speak to PALs as others have advised. That normally puts things in motion extremely quickly.

Juicylucy Thu 03-Sep-20 13:12:41

Greengreengrass how lovely of you to post all the contact details explaining what they both do. I love this site for help and support and also the light hearted threads that often pop up. Hope the poster finds the advise she needed.

grandtanteJE65 Thu 03-Sep-20 13:54:41

Such a worrying situation for you.

I assume your granddaughter has her phone, so you can keep in touch with her.

Where is the father of the child in all this? He is entitled to be told exactly what is wrong with the child at any rate.

Unless there is a medical or legal history you haven't mentioned, I very much doubt that a baby would be taken from its mother because the mother is depressed.

What makes you fear the girl is on the verge of a breakdown?

Surely it is more likely that she is tired, still feeling sick and worried about her baby?

Her GP won't be able to help as long as she is in hospital.

If you get no satisfaction from the ward staff about matters that are not a breach of patient confidentiality, then you might consider going to the obstretician in charge of the unit.

Might your granddaughter consider writing you a power of attorny to discuss her and the baby's health with the staff?

I would try to get hold of the hospital's social workers or the priest or minister connected to the hospital and get them involved.

I hope she gets better soon and the child, of course.

4allweknow Thu 03-Sep-20 14:07:43

Has your GD authorised you to be involved. You don't mention a partner. You can express your concerns but if your GD is mentally competent surely it is your GD the hospital will consult with.

JaneRn Thu 03-Sep-20 16:13:48


What a desperately sad situation at a time which should be a joyful one. You say her mother is not of much help just at the time she is needed most, so this is putting a huge burden on you which you should not have to carry, but I am sure your granddaughter knows how much you care for her and is grateful .

As to seeking help from PALS I was for several years a member of the one at our local hospital and I can agree with everything that has been said about them Do
please get in-touch with them. There is so much they can do to help solve any problem.

JaneRn Thu 03-Sep-20 16:15:32

I forgot to ask - where is the baby's father, and was this a planned pregnancy or a mishap? Surely he is the first person who should be there to support and comfort her.

Phoebes Thu 03-Sep-20 17:46:05

Grandetante: from my experience of taking out a power of attorney, it would be futile for this poor young mum to attempt to do this. I did mine last year and the whole process was an absolute nightmare and took months. My husband wants to do one for himself and has been totally put off by Mrs experience.
After I had our daughter by Caesarian, she was jaundiced and then picked up a kidney infection in hospital, so we both had to stay in hospital for another week. I had a single room as well, but my experience was completely different and I enjoyed the chance of having a good rest after the op. It gave me a chance to recover and the staff and fellow mums were lovely. If your granddaughter feels up to it, she could always leave her room while the baby is napping and go and talk to some of the other mums who may also be desperate for company if they have to stay in for longer.

Sarnia Fri 04-Sep-20 09:32:33

I have just retired from working as a ward clerk on a busy delivery suite. There has been a lot of improvement in recognising and dealing with mental health issues of new Mums. Her notes and computer information should be updated so anyone looking after her has full details of her mental health. They won't be rushing to alert Social Services. On discharge she should be transferred to the care of the community midwives who will monitor her and if they feel it necessary get her the help she needs. Single rooms are like gold dust so it looks as if she is being looked after in that respect. They are small. NHS post-natal wards are not the Portland or the Lindo Wing.

Flaxseed Sat 05-Sep-20 21:55:35

There will be a specialist midwife who deals with mental health issues.
Tell your GD to ask the post natal staff for her to visit.
Maternal mental health is taken seriously where I work. I’d like to think this is nationwide shock!