Jonathan’s aunt on how Jigsaw helped him

Jonathan’s aunt on how Jigsaw helped him

Tuesday, 30 June 2020

Jonathan* is a teenager who was referred to Jigsaw by his GP. Below, Jonathan’s aunt talks about how Jigsaw helped him deal with anxious thoughts and find ways to look after his mental health.

Jonathan’s mother was drinking, and from time to time in hospital with her mental health. His dad was the stable parent in the relationship, but we lost him after a tragic accident. His mother couldn’t help her addiction to alcohol, so she was open to me fostering Jonathan. He came to live with me at the age of seven and his first few years were great, but as he got to puberty things started to slide. It broke my heart when his friends stopped knocking and he started isolating himself.

He’s a really intelligent young fella and likes reading. After our first big conversation about how he was feeling, he left one of his books, The Fault in Our Stars, on the hall landing with a note that said, ‘Read the first page’. He was trying to tell me something, but he hadn’t the words. I knew that something was not right.

One day I got a series of texts from him in school. I could tell that he was anxious. When I collected him that day, he got distressed and spieled off all the things that were upsetting him. I like to take action, so we visited my doctor who referred Jonathan to Jigsaw.

Jonathan's aunt
I don’t need to ask what he does in Jigsaw because we all see the changes in him for the better.

Since then, he has been more positive and active in public situations, such as going to the cinema and hanging out with friends in school. One night I went to collect him from the cinema. I knew well enough that I had to wait back and not be seen, so that I wouldn’t mortify him. A young girl gave him a hug and my heart soared. It was fantastic to see him out being social and enjoying himself. The other thing is that he has become much more considerate. He’d often put the kettle on now and ask if anyone would like a cup of tea, or sit with us chatting. Jonathan doesn’t discuss what he does at Jigsaw. I respect his privacy, so I don’t ask. I don’t need to ask, because we all see the changes in him for the better.

*Names have been changed

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