Getting out of depression - Rebuilding good parent-child relationship

Parents always want their kids to grow up under a healthily and wellestablished family relationship.

However, when parent suffers from depression, the parent-child relationship would be affected and the quality of family life will be downgraded. Worse still, children may even need to take up the role of caregiver which is entirely out of their capacity. The unharmonious atmosphere in the family may affect children's personal growth as well as, the well-being of people in recovery (PIR) of mental illness. The emergence of the vicious circle has brought greater harm to PIR and increase their parenting pressure.

Fung got married in 2007 and had a daughter, Yan. After divorcing, she raised her daughter on her own. The pressure of parenting and earning a living had made her feel depressed and was later diagnosed as depression. At that moment, quarrel and conflict always emerge Fung and Yan on the matter of Yan’s behavior in school. Their relationship was seriously damaged, "I was so depressed at that time. I cannot help scolding her. I can’t sleep and even have negative thoughts and illusion.”

Referred by a psychiatrist, Fung and Yan joined Jockey Club Linking H.O.P.E.S. Project. After participating into the multiple family group, Fung discovered the bright side of her daughter that she had been ignoring in the past. She also started to understand Yan’s inner emotion and behavior through the group activities, which effectively improved their parent-child relationship.

Fung become an active volunteer in the project when service ended. She then participated in the Jockey Club Embracing H.O.P.E.S. Project as a peer support worker. She hopes to encourage other families suffering from mental health problem by sharing her own story.

"I have a good communication with my daughter now. I would like to share my experience with other families on how to improve family relationship."

Jockey Club Embracing H.O.P.E.S. Project

Sponsored by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, the 3-year project titled "Jockey Club Embracing H.O.P.E.S. Project” has been launched since January 2020. With family systems and developmental perspectives as the service framework, the Project serves parents/guardians/care-givers, suffering from mental illness or disturbance and with children aged 18 or below, and their families, with the aims of promoting mental well-being and resilience of family members, enhancing family functioning and cultivating mutual support between families through family-centered counseling, multiple family groups, child-focused psychoeducational groups, wellness programs and parent-focused support programs.

Besides, the Project will also launch community ambassador scheme with volunteer training to community members, who will provide support for children whose parents are suffering from mental illness or disturbance, for building up social capital and promoting social inclusion. The Project also aims to build up professional capacity amongst different professions who are working with families encountered with mental health issues, and to raise the awareness and acceptance of general public towards person-in-recovery of mental illness as well as their families, with the ultimate goal of cultivating a harmonious and inclusive society.

For more details, please contact:

Phone: 3552 5253


Written by: Alan Tam, Project-in-charge of Jockey Club Linking H.O.P.E.S. Project, New Life Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association