The grim work job that led to care worker taking her own life

·News Reporter
·2-min read

The parents of a young woman who took her own life in December have revealed what they think drove her to suicide, admitting her daughter's line of work "had a lot to do with her mental health".

Taylor Watterson, 22, was a nursing home aide from Scotland and was allegedly traumatised by having to wash countless dead bodies, something no girl her age should have to do, her mum said this week.

"One day she asked if I knew how many dead bodies she’d washed," her mum, Lana McCleave, told UK news outlet the Daily Record.

"She’d lost count. I couldn’t believe it when she said it. She was just a young girl and was having to do it regularly."

22 year old girl Taylor Waterston worked in aged care
Taylor Watterson, 22, struggled with her job's responsibilities and eventually took her own life in December. Source: Facebook

Ms Watterson had worked at nursing homes for about five years and in that time she'd become close to a number of elderly residents, her mum said.

Losing people she cared about on a regular basis "was hard for her to take" and she "she couldn’t dissociate from it," her father, Andi McCleave added.

"The only other line of work that would happen in at that age would be a soldier in a war zone," Mr McCleave said. "What sort of effect did that have on the mental health of the carers?”

The 22-year-old reportedly sought help for her mental health struggles and was prescribed medication, but she failed to get better.

Her mum, Lana McCleave, said her daughter had lost count of how many dead bodies she'd seen. Source: Facebook
Her mum, Lana McCleave, said her daughter had lost count of how many dead bodies she'd seen. Source: Facebook

She quit her job and isolated herself from friends and family. On December 19, 2021, she took her own life.

Since then, the grieving parents have spent their time raising funds for charities that help bereaved families.

Ms McCleave said they "don't want other people in this position" and helping others "is what’s keeping us going."

"It’s hard enough for us to get out of bed in the morning, but we want to dedicate as much time as we can to this and raising awareness," Mr McCleave added.

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636, Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

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