If someone you care about has a mental
illness, learning disability or dementia, there may be times when
they need your support.
Of course, the person is still the same husband, wife, relative
or friend that you have always known. You can still have the same
rewarding relationship, but they may need some extra help.
This could include emotional or practical support, but it could
also mean that you have certain legal rights and
For example, if someone become unwell and has to be detained in
hospital, or "sectioned", they may nominate you as their named
person. Or if they don't have capacity to make certain decisions,
you may be able to apply for guardianship, so that you can make
some of those decisions for them. If they do have capacity they may
choose to draw up a Power of Attorney authorising you to make
certain decisions on their behalf.
The Mental Welfare Commission can help you to understand more
about what the law says about your role as a carer, and about the
rights of the person you care for.
Caring can be hard. There may be times when you feel that you
need support for yourself. You might find it helpful to speak to
other people who have had similar experiences, or find out more
about the support that is available for you.