World maternal mental health day 2016

May the 4th 2016 is World Maternal Mental Health Day; isn’t it absolutely amazing to have this one day solely focused on maternal maternal health?

The statistics for maternal mental health are staggering:

  • 1 in 5 new mothers experience some type of perinatal mood and anxiety disorder during pregnancy and after childbirth
  • 7 in 10 actually downplay their symptoms
  • 1 in 10 dads develop depression

The worrying thing is that these are only statistics that have been collected by women who have entered a healthcare system of some description – it would be amazing to see what the statistics are if everyone was given a chance to speak out about how they are feeling. 

My experience:

Since I started my Instagram account (@actively.balanced) 8 weeks postpartum I have tried to be as open as I can about my own postnatal depression. It has been amazingly therapeutic having my blog and Instagram accounts to track my journey through and being able to hear and see so many other women going through the same thing has been so beneficial for my own journey.

But I have been lucky – my journey through social media gave me the confidence to approach my doctor about my inability to cope – not the midwives or health visitors; to be honest I can’t even remember their names and I doubt they would remember mine. It’s difficult not to blame them to some degree for where I was mentally, but actually I don’t think I should. The NHS is straining under a lack of funding, a lack of options for women who have perinatal mood disorders and even more worryingly, there is such a stigma attached to feeling post stalky depressed.

So this day is AMAZING! Let’s talk about it, let’s show the doubters that this is a “thing” and we aren’t just being emotional and we do know how lucky we are having a baby but you know what, we are struggling and we need some help… And that is ok.

For more info go to: http://www.wmmhday.postpartum.net

A xx

One thought

  1. You are so brave and amazing Ali! I’m so proud of you for being open from the start!! I truly admire you for that. I wish that I was open about my postpartum depression in the beginning. Instead, I hid behind it for months which made it more difficult to cope with. So much love for you mama!

    Like

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