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Jayden’s Story: When Dad died
A young man in his late teens, sitting and telling his story
I was seven when Dad died. I was scared for ages. I didn’t know what this meant for me and Mum. Would we still be a family? Would Mum still be able to look after me or would she leave as well?
After it happened I wondered if he did it because of me. I answered back a bit and I didn’t do things when he asked me to. I thought, maybe he didn’t like us anymore.
It was a really bad time. Mum was a mess. It was pretty bad. But she sat down with me and we talked about everything and we made a plan. We went to see the plaque they made for him. It was up with all the other soldiers who have died, which was great. We planted a tree in our garden to remember him. We made a book with all these photos with things we did together and I did drawings of things I remembered doing with him.
I thought he was great – really funny told heaps of jokes.
Mum explained to me that he loved me and it wasn’t my fault at all. We go to see his plaque every year and I still write messages to him in my book when I want to talk to him.
It’s been 10 years since dad died and Mum and I are doing OK.
For immediate assistance when life may be in danger Call 000
For national 24/7 help lines and crisis support counselling:
(Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service)
1800 011 046
- ADF All Hours Support Line
1800 628 036
- Lifeline Australia
13 11 14
- Mens Line
1300 78 99 78
- National Sexual Assault, Family and Domestic Violence Counselling Line
1800 737 732
- Kids Help Line (for 5-25yrs)
1800 55 1800
- Suicide Call Back Service
1300 659 467
- Salvation Army Crisis Line
1300 36 36 22
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Mary’s own mental health suffered until she felt that suicide was the only answer.
After being medically discharged, Emma felt like a failure to herself and her family. She felt no hope for the future.
I saw my son Daniel change after Afghanistan and I didn’t know how to help until it was almost too late.