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Helen Parker-Drabble

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Helen Parker-Drabble on Twitter
Helen Parker-Drabble on Twitter




Helen Parker-Drabble


Wiltshire, United Kingdom

Tell us a bit about your genealogy/family history journey

Author of ‘Who Do I Think You Were?’ A Victorian’s Inheritance. I’m a lifelong explorer of social history, a weaver of factual family tales, and hold a Diploma in counselling. Fascinated by psychological theory and the stories we develop to make sense of ourselves and our family, my original quest was to understand my Victorian grandfather, Walter Parker, born in 1885 in the English village of Upwell on the Norfolk/Cambridgeshire border. Walter migrated to Canada in 1907.
During my research, a transgenerational legacy of loss, trauma, anxiety, and depression unravelled. It revealed repeated patterns of behaviour that I too had unwittingly passed on. This discovery helped me understand my work’s focus. As a geneatherapist my mission is to share historical and current theories around mental health, psychology, and neuroscience to help family historians answer their question, ‘Who Do I Think You Were?’ so they can connect and deepen their understanding of their ancestors for the benefit of present and future generations.
It is through acknowledging and exploring these patterns that we can develop a deeper understanding of those who came before us and pass on a healthier legacy.

Surnames of interest

Parker; Drabble; Turner; Bunting; Emblow; Pooley; Asker; Maddison; Rands; Moulton; Chadwick; Leah; Furness; Fox; Earnshaw; Goodison; Hodgson; O’Brien; Nortcliffe; Mallinder; Lee; Hudson; Hobourn; Legge; Abbott; Davis; Ireland; Coe; Cook.

If you could meet one person from your family tree that died before you were born, who would it be and why?

 4 x great-grandfather, Samuel Chadwick, who had a psychiatric disorder recognised at his 1833 trial for murder. I would like to know what led to his horrific act.

Favorite place where you’ve traveled

Thorney, Peterborough where my maternal working-class grandfather’s home has been turned into a village museum

What are you currently working on and what’s next?

Just published: How Key Psychological Theories Can Enrich Our Understanding of Our Ancestors and Help Improve Mental Health for Present and Future Generations: A Family Historian’s Perspective
I’m writing a book about a relative who started a recipe book dated 1860, Sheffield, Yorkshire, UK. But I’ve put it on hold to write about my father who has recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Working title ‘Can’t Do to Can Do’ written off as an uneducatable working class cripple aged 2 (as consequence of bovine TB) to successful professional, husband, father and grandfather. 

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