Suha is a forty one year old married woman from Al Shaja’aiyya, Gaza who lives with her husband and five daughters and three sons who attend school. Suha is a housewife; her husband is the only breadwinner who is a daily paid worker with an average salary of $10 per day. This very low income is not enough to cover the daily expenses, educational costs and any treatment costs. After the recent war on Gaza, the family lost their home; it was fully destroyed and they had to move to a small rented house.
Suha started to attend the psychosocial support sessions for the mothers and during one-on-one sessions, CJ’s psychosocial specialist identified that Suha suffered from stress, self-blame, lack of sleep and emotional disturbance that affected the relationship with her children. She also had suicidal tendencies and that she considered harming herself or even thought of committing suicide.
She used to attend the sessions and was very passive and interacting with others and she would always show negative response or no response at all. Those syndromes are common with people suffering from acute depression.
Moreover, Suha’s daughter who attends the psychosocial support sessions for children also suffered from depression and she was always crying and sitting alone refusing to participate with others in the activities.
Caritas Jerusalem’s psychosocial specialist has conducted individual sessions for both Suha and her daughter to help them rebuild their mother-daughter relationship and strengthen their bond.
Each session lasted two hours; the first one was introducing each other and gathering information about the family while in the second one; Suha started to share her fears and problems. The psychologist provided the necessary support and guidance to the mother and her kids on how to deal with problems and Suha started using some of the techniques for stress relief and new methods to deal with her kids.
The symptoms of depression gradually began to decrease and by the seventh session Suha was reacting positively. “After a long time of isolation and living under stress and fear, I thank God for the sessions that actually helped me to build a better relation with my kids. So now I feel that we have a new fresh start and all of this couldn’t be possible without your help and support.” Said Suha