Portsmouth son urges people to get mental health support if they need it after struggling with mum's suicide for two years
TWO years after his mum took her own life, Sydney Wicks realised he needed a bit of help to come to terms what had happened.
The 23-year-old from Portsmouth said he spent two years living in shock after his mother Tracy, 46, went missing in 2016 before her body was found in Hilsea a day later.
Sydney said: ‘My mum had struggled with mental health for most of her life and so I had seen her upset and depressed before but it was such a shock.
‘I think such a shock to the system makes your brain goes into denial. I used to have dreams that my mum had faked her death and had chosen to live a different life.’
Sydney, a baker at Asda in Fratton, reached out to Talking Change in 2018, a free mental health talking therapy in Portsmouth, to help him deal with his emotions.
He said: ‘I was in a group session and it was about seven to eight weeks long.
‘At first I didn’t really think it would do anything but about five weeks in it just clicked and it made me realise what kind of thoughts were keeping me in that low mood.
‘Some days are harder than others but you just have to keep up the techniques to help change your negative thoughts.’
Talking Change is a free NHS service, provided by Solent NHS Trust, and offers mental health support for anyone 16 or above in the Portsmouth area (iTalk offers the same service across other parts of Hampshire).
The service consists of a group of mental health and wellbeing professionals, including psychotherapists, counsellors and employment advisors, who can help people access treatments for common mental health problems such as depression, anxiety, and bereavement.
Treatments are currently offered through video calls and courses, online digital therapies and by phone.
Sydney said: ‘The help is out there for anyone who needs it. I think what help people need specifically is different for everyone and it may be therapy or just being with others but not specifically talking about it or talking to family and friends as well.’