How Childline saved my life
Sioned had a difficult home life and looked after her mother who had depression. Sioned shares her story:
"My home life was always chaotic. My parents argued a lot and when I was 13 they split up and my dad moved out. My mum got really depressed and spent a lot of time in bed.
“My brother and I had to look after her a lot and try to encourage her to get up and wash herself. We also had to clean the house.
“I was trying to function as a normal teenager but it was hard to pretend that everything was ok and I often had outbursts at school. We were just not functioning as a family.
“One time when I was alone at home, I took an overdose. I’d heard about Childline so I called them and told them what I’d done. They rang an ambulance and it saved my life.
“I was moved to a psychiatric unit over 100 miles from home. It was strange and new and I was scared. I felt really lonely so I often called Childline for someone to talk to.
“The unit wasn't secure and I ran away a couple of times. Each time I went near to a railway line and wanted to commit suicide but I would call Childline and they would calm me down and ring the unit, who would send the police to come pick me up.
"The first time I called them I spoke to a counsellor called Amy who was really good with me and really patient. I must have been on the phone for about three hours talking about everything that was upsetting me. My life was still so chaotic but she really listened and made me feel comforted.
“I used to ring them twice a week, sometimes more if things were really bad. I also wrote to them and found it really cathartic getting it all down on paper. They wrote back and I kept and treasured those letters, re-reading them again and again.
“I moved into care when I was 14 and it was a difficult time but knowing I had Childline at the end of the phone still got me through it. I called them on Christmas Day when I was in foster care.
"I often think about the time Childline gave to me and the journey they went on with me. If I hadn't had them to turn to then I would have maybe killed myself or gone down the wrong route in life.
“If any young people are going through a rough time at home or feeling depressed or suicidal, I would encourage them not to be afraid and contact Childline. It's better to get it out than keep it in and they'll be there to listen to you and help you no matter what and not judge you."
The NSPCC's Childline service
The NSPCC's Childline service gives children and young people a voice when no one else is listening. Whatever problems or dangers they face, Childline offers them somewhere to turn to for support when they need it.
Every child should be able to enjoy a safe and happy childhood. But for that to happen, children need support, they need guidance - and sometimes, they need to be protected.
That's why, for over 130 years, the NSPCC has fought for children - and they’ve adapted to whatever challenges they face.
Leaving a gift in your Will to the NSPCC
You can give the most powerful gift – a safe and happy childhood – by leaving a gift in your Will to the NSPCC.
Your gift could help prevent abuse, neglect and exploitation. It could fund Childline and education programmes that give children the confidence to speak out when something is wrong.
A gift in your Will can power this work for years to come, so that the NSPCC can help keep children safe, no matter what the future holds.