I hope that you are doing well!? And looking forward to May 17th when things ease a bit more
Mental Health Awareness Month 2021 is this month (May 2021). Please take your time to read this blog post as this is a very important subject.
I think that as mothers, it is important that we talk about mental health, which appears to be a taboo to speak about- especially when you are a mother. This is actually crazy considering 1 in 4 people suffer from a mental illness.
Are you a mother who has dealt with mental health issues prior to or post becoming a mother? Are you a mother who has suffered from post-natal depression? How safe do you feel speaking about this?
Maternal mental health does exist and 1 in 10 women are said to develop mental illnesses during this time. As you can imagine, this does not have a positive impact on women and families.
I did some research and women of colour are more vulnerable then their white counterparts. To clarify, all women of every race meet challenges in mental health however, during pregnancy and post, women of colour are said to be particularly vulnerable. Why is this?
One thing I’ve learnt about mental health is that we all have mental health but what we don’t want, is poor mental health. Our mental health is just as important as our physical health!!!
As mothers are we looking after our mental health? In fact, there is a stigma already around mental health generally but dads, how are you looking after your mental health? Being a man does not mean that you also do not suffer from mental health.
With over a year of uncertainty and being indoors with our lives changing; with new additions- please Do Not for any reason feel unjustified for how you feel. Your feelings are valid.
Personally, on becoming a new mother I have had anxious moments- a very short episode of baby blues at the start, yes. I believe that this is normal and I will not be ashamed as being a parent is daunting. I sometimes feel guilty for having my ‘days’ as I want to be the best mother ever to my daughter; as she deserves the Very Best- but this pressure to be a great parent sometimes leaves me overthinking. Can you relate? What is your experience since being a new parent?
Despite all this, I have listed some things below which could help:
- The theme of this months mental health awareness month is NATURE. Getting out for fresh air has been a coping strategy for many with everything that’s been happening around the world. I recommend walks (I should walk more) on your own and with baby!
- Working out. I currently love home workouts but gyms are also open so do what suits you best!
- Self care: whatever this may be for you i.e. reading a book, a bubble bath (take a break from the news and anything too stressful!) etc
- Speaking to someone you trust and who you will not feel judged by, about how you feel
- Do not compare yourself to another mother or your child/ children to there’s! We all grow at our own pace
- Practice gratitude, pray
- I recognise that not everyone has the luxury of additional support so you could also seek help via hotlines, your health visitor and/ or GP
- The maternal mental health alliance page (Google search) is also a good page to check out
Please remember that people who need help, often do not look like they do. You are not ridiculous for feeling how you do! Getting help is better than not getting help. Being a parent is not the easiest job.
Please note that I am also available to speak to and I hope this blog post helps you. If you would like to speak to me, please contact me on: firstname.lastname@example.org
#journeytorecovery #maternalmhmatters #mentalhealthawarenessmonth
ANJ TALKS ♡