Thank you Maternal Mental Health Awareness week
*possible trigger warning
This year was the UK’s first Maternal Mental health awareness week, between 1-7 May Perinatal mental health partnership held themed based days for everybody to get involved & raise awareness. Charities and organisations ran events to celebrate & support mums & their families. While post-natal depression is fairly well known, there are a number of other pregnancy-related conditions that aren’t spoken about as much. These include perinatal anxiety, perinatal obsessive-compulsive disorder, postpartum psychosis, PTSD and birth trauma.
Let’s speak out without shame or embarrassment. We are Mothers with human emotion NOT superpowers. We are not perfect, and that’s okay.
The constant worry that you’re doing right by your child. The never ending comparisons to mothers that they’re doing so much better than you. The loneliness of having no one to talk to all day. The haunting realisation that your life isn’t going to get back to normal anytime soon and the hard work is inescapable. The unexpected drain on your relationship, resentment, distance. Will you both make it through this? Having nobody to confide in because why would you admit you can’t do something that millions of women have handled since the beginning of time.
My daughters birth left me without any physical deficits (besides recovery from a caesarean section) which I think prompted friends and family to believe that I was recovered and breezily moving through mommy-hood. They couldn’t see what was going on inside, the grinding anxiety and panic, the crushing guilt and resentment. The anger that I did not get a fair deal!
Being a parent is so tough. You sacrifice every part of yourself for this tiny human who you love more than anything you can imagine. Sometimes thoughts are more powerful I remember sitting on the kitchen floor surrounded by pills trying to work out when nobody was here, I believed if I took them my problems would be solved. I sat on the floor crying so hard, barely able to breathe I was convinced I deserved this pain.
I am so thankful for this week & the community of amazing individuals & organisations I’ve discovered. Using hashtags #PNDhour #MaternalMHhealthmatters #Shoutieselfie (which I know people don’t agree with & I can understand 100%) opened up a world of help and information.
Today is save the date Sunday so you’re not too late to join in the conversation (see the link below for info how)
Remember it’s okay to ask for help.
*All organisations including charities and individual people who offer support will be listed on my resources page here. For more information take a look at the National coalition for Maternal Health.