6th July 2015 Light Bulb Moment by Petra Holmes

When I qualified as a doctor over 20 years ago, I was completely unaware of the term attachment.

In the last 10 years, however, of knowing Ruth and Alan I have had numerous conversations about the challenges facing children with attachment problems and subsequent behavioural issues. I was amazed that as a professional dealing with families and children, I was ignorant of the importance and impact on so many people’s lives. Put bluntly, it is not part of traditional medical training and does not appear to be even today. But as doctors we are often the first point of call for many families facing problems.

About 3 years ago, I attended a talk by a psychologist and had a light bulb moment. In my evidenced based world, I had been shown the scientific proof of the effect on children of neglect. Brain scans showed clearly the differences between children who had been loved and nurtured and those who sadly had not.

The need for early intervention and help with ‘rewiring’ was evident, but in today’s world, professional help seems to be reactive rather than proactive.

Why are we waiting until kids have problems at school, get into trouble with the police and have dysfunctional relationships with families and peers?

I am delighted to be part TAAFA, with Ruth, Alan and an additional inspirational friend, Beth, to improve everyone’s awareness of the effects of our early lives. We provide help and training to build a future of hope for those most in need, our children.

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