You Matter Too exists to provide self-care tools and services to empower parents to take care of themselves in order to support their children’s social, emotional, and physical needs.
Our mission is to create a preventative movement committed to reducing child abuse and neglect in high-risk, low-income areas by providing free mental health and self-care services to parents.
We, the founders of You Matter Too (YMT), Amna and Kanika, were deeply affected by the recurring stories of child abuse and filicide that surfaced in the news so often. Spefically, Amna was heartbroken after hearing about Bella, 4, who was forced to watch her little sister be killed by her father and then was herself suffocated by him in August of 2018. Kanika felt similarly when she heard about Noah, 8, who was continuously tortured and ultimately, killed by his father in March of 2019.
As parents of toddlers, we know the challenges that come with positive parenting even with the support of a strong network and resources to do so. We want to provide YMT parents with access to the resources that they need to take care of their mental health so that they can first support their own social, emotional, and physical needs and then those of their children’s.
To achieve this, we are partnering with Ootify, an easy-to-use teletherapy app that provides access to therapists, coaches, and mentors at the parent’s convenience - be it via text, call, or video chat. Our goal is to raise funds for low-income parents of children ages 0 to 11 to receive free self-care and create a safer environment for their children. We believe that every parent needs this app as teletherapy has proven to help parents through anxiety and can help manage emotions and responses to difficult situations. Approximately one in five Americans will experience a mental health condition in a given year. And ultimately, any help is better than none at all.
This is one way for us to create a preventative means to ensure that our children are taken care of by parents who are mentally healthy and also, taken care of.
STATISTICS AND DATA
A study in the Forensic Science International journal looked at three decades worth of filicide cases and found they occurred about 500 times a year in the US.
Almost 72% of those killed by their own parents were 6 years old or younger.
One-third of the victims were under 1 year of age.
More than 40% of the killers in these crimes were mothers, with fathers making up about 57% of those who killed their own children.
10% of the victims were killed by their stepparents. That means 90% of the victims were the biological sons or daughters of the killer. Sons (52%) were more likely to be killed than daughters (38%).
Parents used what the study called "personal weapons" to beat, choke or drown victims in the majority of cases involving underage kids.
HOW WE CAN HELP
According to the Journal of Clinical Psychology, poverty and low-income status is linked to mental health problems and violence. Low-income adults and children are also much less likely than adults with higher incomes to receive mental healthcare. This is due to the following barriers: cost, time, and stigma-related concerns. However, You Matter Too is here to change that!
You Matter Too provides parents with free self-care options.
With only 30-minute weekly teletherapy sessions, parents can feel more at ease scheduling some time for self-care through their preferred source of communication (text, audio, or visual) from the comfort of wherever they are.
Societal stigma of mental health
You Matter Too aims to truly normalize the idea of "therapy" as self-care by sharing more therapy success stories of relatable parents as well as those of our own.
By addressing these barriers, You Matter Too strives to provide high-quality and evidence-based mental health services to provide parents with the support that they need so that they can in turn, positively impact their children.