This week, 1st – 7th May 2017, is the first Maternal Mental Health Week!
It has been set up by the Perinatal Mental Health Partnership so parents can open up about their mental health following the birth of their babies and talk about their feelings.
This is something that it quite important to me. I had an inkling before I had Jack that I could suffer from Post Natal Depression as my history of depression made me more susceptible to it. What I didn’t expect was to be hit with PTSD and major Anxiety, having brought my preemie home.
People who have read my blogs will know that I had panic attacks about anything and everything when Jack came home. I panicked about every single sniffle and my brain was already telling me he’d end up in hospital. I couldn’t carry him up and down the stairs without my brain giving me a terrible image of what might happen if I tripped. We went to the walk in centre twice and even A&E once because I was convinced that something must be wrong and I just needed a doctor to examine him and even then I couldn’t relax.
It was exhausting to live this way, and yes as parents these little niggles will always be there, even when he’s 40 I’ll be worrying about him. But to be so consumed by these thoughts meant I wasn’t enjoying my newborn baby like I should.
So I am 100% behind The Every Mum Movement, set up by Olivia, The No Bull Mum. I am coming out of the other end of my postnatal anxiety and PTSD but I know that, from our journey and experiences, that the percentage of prem/NICU mums who will suffer from a Mental Health problem is a lot higher, at 40%, than the number of full term/healthy baby mums at only 10%*.
I have found that talking about my struggles can be incredibly healing. Having a Mental Illness can be isolating and so to combat it, we must talk about it. I blog, I’ve had counselling, I have connected with other mums going through struggles of their own who understand.
We can beat it together. We can show PND, Anxiety and PTSD who’s the boss. Tomorrow, Wednesday 3rd May, please change your FB profile picture to one of yourself with the sign as I have, with the message and hashtags, to show your support for Mums and Dads whose parenthood journey has not been easy.
Visit my FB page and message me if you need support from someone who understands, if you don’t know who to turn to. I’ll do my best to reply as quick as I can! I’m not a professional, just a girl who has been through it and then some!
Please share this post all over the place to get people talking about Maternal Mental Health!!!
#everymum deserves the right to enjoy motherhood