Preston man reveals how Dadsnet in Lancashire gave him hope after he became a single parent

Aaron Bedford, of Ashton, talks about how Dadsnet helped him through his dark days after splitting up with the mother of his child.

By Natalie Walker
Thursday, 1st August 2019, 1:44 pm
Updated Thursday, 1st August 2019, 2:44 pm
Aaron Bedford (left) with Graham Sims, leader of Lancashire's Dadsnet
Aaron Bedford (left) with Graham Sims, leader of Lancashire's Dadsnet

Breaking up with the mother of his child was a horrible experience for Aaron Bedford.

As he felt he was losing his son, the 25-year-old sunk into a deep depression and things took a dark turn in February when he tried to end it all.

But with the support of his peers at Dadsnet, he is moving forward and feels more positive about himself.

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Aaron, of Ashton, says: “I first joined Dadsnet last April after I split up with my little boy’s mum, as I needed some advice and support.

“But in February, I had a breakdown and attempted suicide. I was not in a good place at all.

“I had to take time off work and I left my job. I had friends, but I pushed them away.

“I knew I needed to get out and do something. I needed to stop locking myself in my room.

“Luckily the guys from Dadsnet were there to listen to me. I went through the NHS crisis team, but it was the guys at Dadsnet and people like Graham who gave up their own time that helped me massively.

“So I joined Kickabout. The guys really understood what I was going through. Some of my friends aren’t parents and don’t understand how difficult it is to be a single dad.

“But it is easier with support. Going to football sessions was a way of getting out of the house. If I had stayed in, I would have got worse.”

Aaron adds the group is a great way to socialise and gain solidarity.

He says: “The group is mixed. Some men are still with their partners and a few are single dads.

“It is a great place to get support and advice and to vent. It is a safe place where anyone can say what is on their mind.

“When you become a parent you can become quite isolated as you go into your own family.

“There is definitely a need for this group. It’s quite common knowledge that men are closed off and don’t talk about stuff much.

“Dadsnet is a great place where we can be ourselves and talk about things.”

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