Shona’s story

My partner recommended Carers’ Support East Kent after I had a ‘Carer breakdown’

Shona is 24 and lives in Deal. They look after their partner who has a brain disorder called FND. This means she is unable to walk, experiences regular seizures and is unable to leave her home.

“I’ve been a Carer for 4 months since my partner’s condition started. It has affected her legs so she can’t walk, she has a weakened grip, swallowing issues and frequent seizures.  It was a real struggle at the beginning, I was looking after her full time and there was no time to relax or have a break.

I used to work away in the film industry but was having to turn down work, so I’ve now taken some time out of my career and started a part-time role locally, so I’m closer. My partner does have a regular carer come in to wash her in the mornings but I help her with toileting and medication. She can be left for short periods so I can get out for a 20-minute jog – any longer and a friend or relative stays with her.

In the early days when it was all very overwhelming, my partner recommended I contact Carers’ Support East Kent (she knew about them through her job) and they carried out a Carer’s Needs Assessment with me. I’m hoping I’ll soon be able to meet other younger Carers like me too.”