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Kim Bell

Kim has been caring for her son for 12 years. "I dont sleep now, I constantly worry about him and his future, especially when I am no longer around."

Who do you care for and how long have you been caring?

I've been caring for my son for the last 12 years.

Why do they need care?

My son has ADHD, ODD, learning difficulties, dyslexia and severe behavioural problems. He needs 24/7 care, to keep him and others safe.

Describe your caring experience in 3 words...

Exhausting, frustrating, rewarding.

How has your life changed since you became a carer?

I dont sleep now, I constantly worry about him and his future, especially when I am no longer around. I have to be proactive with everything, always fighting with professionals to get the best for my son. I never have any money. I now have no friends and my family have slowly disappeared. I never go out to socialise. My life has changed completely.

What's the most important thing caring has taught you?

How strong you must be at all times, which is very difficult when you're so tired and stressed constantly, you must never give up the fight to secure a decent future for your child, time is so precious.

What advice would you give to other carers?

Professionals will always deny you help, keep at it and never give up. If possible take time out for yourself, eat and sleep as best you can to stay well.

What do you want to see changed for carers?

More help, financially, emotionally and socially for both carers and the cared for. Not to have to fight for everything.

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