Corey

… drink, fight and not be able to stop

My pa and my aunty told me mum was in jail, after she had gone. I was 15.

They decided I would live with them, but because my pa had been sick, I thought I would be a burden on them.

When mum went to prison I moved house. I stopped eating. I got really depressed. I stopped everything except cricket. I hated school, even being there – my report was really bad.

I didn't want to visit mum. I was really angry with her for about four months for what she did. I wanted to punish her; I wanted her to think about what she had done.

There were some other kids at school whose mum was in jail too. But I didn't want to talk to them. I didn't talk to anyone about any of this. I was too embarrassed. I just let it bottle up inside, and then I'd take it out on other people. I would drink and fight, and not be able to stop.

Having mum go away made me realise how much I needed her. I have forgiven her for leaving me, but I won't forget.

There are people to talk to who understand

Corey found it really hard to talk to anyone about how he felt. If you are a bit like that, don't give up. Sometimes it's just about finding the right person. But you can also make contact with a worker via online counselling or by telephone.

Online services can be good because they are private and anonymous; but sometimes you do have to wait, or the service might not be available when you need to use it. Otherwise there are phone services which are really good.

  • KidsHelplineKids Helpline has both online counselling, which is immediate, and email counselling, where you might have to wait for a response. kidshelp.com.au These things are open every day, but NOT 24 hours a day – you can find out the times on the website.
  • The Kids Helpline phone number is 1800 55 1800 – they are open 24 hours a day, every day.