Accessibility Page Navigation
Style sheets must be enabled to view this page as it was intended.
The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

When a parent has a mental illness...

Rehabilitation Services


Did you know that there are lots of children who have a parent who might take medicine for feeling sad, getting very angry for no reason, not wanting to join in with things or saying and doing strange things?

That may be because they have a mental illness. Did you know that 1 in 12 children has a parent who is unwell in this way? No-one really knows exactly what happens in the brain when people have an illness like this. The films below give an idea of what might be going on for some...



FILM: Tulisa: My Mum and me


An hour long documentary film about singer/songwriter Tulisa Contostavlos's life as a young child and teenager growing up with her mother who has schizoaffective disorder. 


FILM: When a parent has a mental illness...

The film is aimed at young carers themselves. Young carers talk about their lives caring for a parent with mental illness. Narrated by Chineye, a young carer herself, the film also explains in a very simple and visual way how the brain works and what happens when things go wrong.

If you have problems viewing the film on full screen, please right click on your mouse and go to view full screen.



This film was produced by Dr Alan Cooklin with funds from the Royal College of Psychiatrists' Images of Psychiatry Campaign.

If you would like to download the file please click here (right-click button and "Save As").

Back to homepage

Make a Donation

MHGU 4th Factsheets

Mental Health and Growing Up: Factsheets for parents, teachers and young people

Read the factsheets

Buy as a book
Support us
Print this leaflet  
About our leaflets
Order our leaflets
see also

Related Information


Read me


For a catalogue of public education materials or copies of our leaflets contact: 

Leaflets Department,

The Royal College of Psychiatrists, 

21 Prescot Street, London E1 8BB. 

Telephone: 020 7235 2351 x 2552

The Royal College of Psychiatrists is a charity registered in England and Wales (228636) and in Scotland (SC038369).