Having a baby completely turns your life upside down!
It can feel overwhelming, and when you add huge hormonal changes into the mix it’s no wonder that almost every new mum experience ‘baby blues’. This tends to cause tearfulness which starts in the first week, and should settle by the time your baby is 2 weeks old.
However, for about 1 in 10 women things don’t settle down themselves.
If you have been feeling low for a couple of weeks, it could be that you are suffering with post-natal depression. This can involve feeling teary and anxious. We know some women can also develop intrusive thoughts, which can include thoughts of wanting to hurt themselves or their baby. Experiencing dark thoughts can be very distressing, and new mums in particular can feel guilty about having these thoughts and feelings.
If you are feeling low, please do contact us. There is a lot we can do to help and support you. It is not your fault that you are feeling this way, and we know that you love your baby very much.
Please do open up to the healthcare professionals around you. Your Midwife and Health Visitor have lots of experience in supporting new parents. If you have experienced a particularly traumatic birth please do talk to your Midwife about the debriefing service that they offer; this can give you the opportunity to process what has happened.
SMILE – based in Macclesfield. They hold weekly support groups on a Friday at Hurdsfield Children’s Centre and have other local groups too. You can find out where and when they meet on their website.
Stockport Snowdrops is based in Romiley. They hold fortnightly ‘stay and play’ support group for new parents feeling overwhelmed. They also have an active Facebook support page and blog articles on Postnatal mental health challenges.
Further afield, Motherwell is a charity based in Crewe. They offer a free 6-week face to face course for new mums. They cover topics such as the expectations and realities of new motherhood, changes to relationships and parenting styles.
PANDAS is a national support group for mums and dads suffering with post-natal depression. They have various options for accessing support, including local face-to-face groups, a phoneline, an email service, a text messaging service and a Facebook support group.
The MIND website has lots of information about different mental health challenges that can present during pregnancy and post-natally. These can include post-natal depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD/birth trauma and post-partum psychosis. It has useful sections on self-care and support for partners.
The Tommy’s website has lots of information on pregnancy, giving birth, and issues such as post-natal depression: