The weeks and months after having a baby can be an incredibly isolating time. Statutory paternity leave is only 2 weeks long, so the majority of new mums only have help for a very short period of time before their partners have to return to work.
After having my first child, I remember feeling really overwhelmed after my husband went back to work - a mixture of exhaustion from the relentless nights of broken sleep and a constant low level bubbling of anxiety because I didn’t know what the hell I was doing!! 😬
I had been busy working as a personal trainer throughout my pregnancy, chatting with lots of clients, colleagues and friends everyday, and then suddenly I was stuck at home, responsible for keeping a tiny baby alive, googling every tiny thing she did incase there was something wrong.
There were definitely lonely moments, but luckily I’m fortunate to live in an area which has literally tons of mum and baby classes every day of the week, so I got out there and made new friends with people who were in the exact same boat as me.
But there are lots of mums out there who live in areas where they don’t have things like that available to them, and perhaps don’t have a good support network of family and friends.
So if you know a new mum, make sure you check in on them. Pop round and maybe take the baby for a walk so they can have a break or an uninterrupted shower. Or even just pop in for a cuppa and a catch up.
Today is the last day of Maternal Mental Health Matters Awareness Week which is a week-long campaign dedicated to talking about mental illness during pregnancy or after having a baby and signposting to support for all mums.
The focus is on supporting mums affected by maternal mental health and helping them get access to the information and help they need, to enable recovery.
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