By Lindsay Robinson, mum, campaigner and advocate for maternal mental health
Lindsay is mum to Reuben and lives and works in Belfast, Northern Ireland. She is dedicated to raising awareness of perinatal mental health and helping to improve support for all who struggle. She works with the Maternal Mental Health Alliance.
In September 2015 I was finally diagnosed with Postnatal Depression, two years after my son was born. I had experienced a long (undiagnosed) battle with the illness which made me severely ill – mentally, emotionally and physically. Having asked for help, twice, in the early months and not been treated, I then believed how I was feeling was my fault. I used to tell myself I’d “missed the mum gene”. Continue reading I’m ready to thrive not just survive: Lindsay Robinson’s story
by Sharin Baldwin. Sharin is a trained nurse, midwife and health visitor and a keen advocate for health visiting. Her research interest is the mental health and wellbeing of fathers, an area that is fairly neglected. She is currently undertaking a PhD in this field at King’s College London and is the first health visitor to be awarded a Clinical Doctoral Fellowship by NIHR.
Fathers’ mental health and wellbeing has attracted more media attention is recent months but despite this there is very little support out there for new fathers. We know that as men become fathers they face many changes and new challenges, as women do, which can increase stress and have a negative impact on their mental wellbeing.
Continue reading Putting fathers in the picture
What is it? This short report captures the key messages from our third masterclass event which was on the role of midwives and health visitors in perinatal mental health services.
What is it for? The document contains top tips from our expert speakers who work as midwives and health visitors within perinatal mental health. The importance of the specialist role is included. It provides information and examples of how important the roles are within perinatal mental health and the way the specialist role can be valuable for the wider team.
How can it be used? Commissioners, providers and clinicians can use the top tips to learn lessons from those who have experience in midwifery and health visiting and how these roles can be enhanced to provide specialist support in perinatal mental health care. Please tweet and share the report with anyone who might find it useful.
By Laura Wood, mum with lived experience who campaigns for better perinatal mental health, @cooksferryqueen
Laura has created a Twitter tutorial to help professionals working in the sector to make the most of Twitter for perinatal mental health. Here, she blogs about her story and how online peer support has helped her and others.
A month or so after my son’s traumatic birth in February 2014, I unravelled quite suddenly, and I had no idea what was happening to me. I was experiencing flashbacks, violent intrusive thoughts, and suicidal impulses. I was completely all over the place, and I was terrified. I was aware of postnatal depression, but I also knew that I wasn’t depressed. Continue reading Beyond Peer Support: Twitter and Perinatal Mental Health
By Emma Jane Sasaru
Emma Jane is a mother to two daughters and passionate about improving maternity and perinatal mental health services for women and their families. The Mums and Babies in Mind team invited Emma to tell her story about birth trauma, perinatal PTSD and how she is making a difference.
We sometimes go through things in life that completely change us.
For me this is certainly true. When I gave birth to my first daughter I suffered birth trauma and then went on to develop perinatal post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Continue reading…