Daniel and Cait (not real names) were 4 and 7 when their mum was admitted to inpatient psychiatric care in Lancaster this year.
Daniel has Autism and found it difficult to comprehend why his mum was no longer at home. He counted how many days she was gone. Cait just missed her mum a lot. Their mum has talked to them about what it was like while she was in hospital and what made it better.
When you were in hospital we really missed you and we never want you to go back.
You were sad and daddy was sad, it was horrible. I counted how many days you were there and you didn't come back when you came back before.
We liked visiting you and feeding the horse. We liked the cafe too as they were nice and there was chocolate. Sometimes I cried when you didn't come home with us.
I missed you mummy. Grandma doesn't hug the same.
Their mum asked - what do you think it would be like if I was in a hospital in another town?
That would be really sad because we couldn't get there. I'd be very, very sad if I couldn't visit you and we'd cry. I'd cry.
Lack of local care would have isolated Daniel and Cait's mum from them and caused the children additional upset and distress. Local inpatient psychiatric care isn't just important for women, its important for their families too.