"Even though I desperately wanted a second baby I had a constant sense of dread and was overcome with anxiety about the future. Every time I went to bed I would lie awake with anxiety and think, how am I going to cope with two children?"
"People will say, 'Oh a 6 month old baby should be able to sleep through the night'. Well ok, that's great for some, but my baby doesn't. I can get upset and frustrated that she doesn't OR I can accept it and move on."
"I experienced postnatal anxiety and depression after all three of my births, but each time was different."
"Mums are so amazing and no matter what age we are, we always need them. We don’t give ourselves enough credit!"
Kelly's story: recovering from postnatal anxiety and depression
"Breastfeeding was a nightmare. I tried everything and everyone and felt under so much pressure to avoid formula at all costs. My daughter was crying constantly due to hunger and my mental health was deteriorating."
"I grabbed her hand and said something’s wrong. You have to help me! I burst into tears and told her what I was going through. She sat down and listened"
'That moment I knew that something was wrong all those years ago. I began to feel so much guilt and anger with myself. I couldn’t comprehend why things were different this time around.'
Read Annette's Story >
"I was accustomed to perceptibly being in control of much in my life; professional and personally. It was when Louis was about 6 weeks old that the wheels metaphorically fell odd for me."
Read Bec's Story >
"I would awake with a start with an awful sensation that I couldn't breath and that my chest was being crushed. I had never experienced panic attacks before. During the first weeks of motherhood they kicked off what was the beginning of a struggle with severe post-natal depression and anxiety."
Read Elisabeth's Story >
"This was a feeling I had never expected and was completely unprepared for. My burning desire to give this little girl the world meant I wasn’t able to open up to anyone about how I was feeling."
"For anyone going through PND or feeling as though you can't cope, know that you are not alone, you are not crazy, there is help and you will get through it, I promise!"
Read Erin's Story >
"Being a nurse, a midwife, a perfectionist, educated, having close family and a loving partner - these were all reasons why at the beginning of our journey we assumed things would be perfect. We didn’t need to worry about things like PND or PNA. How wrong we were."
"I was in denial, and I tried to tell myself that “you are fine’’! I felt like all of my friends had it worked out and that I was one massive hopeless failure. The thing I know now is that nobody has it worked out! We are all just trying to do the best we can and every mother is different and that’s OK."
Read Jane's Story >
For me the moment I stepped out of the hospital doors after delivering my second son I was hit like a tonne of bricks. Everything I knew was suddenly not the same. I couldn't go to the gym when I wanted, shopping took on a whole new meaning let alone just getting organised to head out for the day. For some they wouldn't care about this, but it was my identity that was all of a sudden different and I wasn't prepared for it.
"When my husband flew back to work, I put on a brave face and pretended I was going to cope like some kind of super-mum but nobody knew how much I doubted myself as a mother, doubted my right to be a mother…"
Read Karen's Story >
"Some days I could not even bring myself to leave the house, and if I had to, I would get myself that worked up that I would have panic attacks before and afterwards."
Read Kate's story >
"Nothing made me happy. I think the biggest problem for me was the expectations I had in my mind about how I would feel. I expected to feel joy, but all I felt like in those first weeks was regret, guilt, (oh the overwhelming guilt), fear, and the most deep depression. I saw no light at the end of the tunnel and all I could do was cry."
"Why was this happening to me? I kept asking myself. Why was I looking forward so much to the visit from the community child health nurse? The company, the reassurance, the conversation? This was the visit I'd heard so many other mums say no to."
"The anxiety manifested itself in many ways. On some days it would take hold of me at the kitchen sink. I'd stare at the water feeling utterly dissapointed at what my life had become…On other days it would stare me down in the mirror."
Read Marth's Story >
"I had dreamt about becoming a mum for as long as I could remember, in 2012 my daughter was born and my dream came true. However, in the weeks leading up to her birth my world started to unravel."
Read Megan's Story >
"There are moments when I am grateful for this experience..I have developed much more empathy and more understanding about mental health and believe that my relationship with my partner is better than before."
Read Melanie's Story >
"...then I had my first of many panic attacks. They would come on mainly at night the gripping feeling of almost not being able to breathe, that tightness in your chest and in your stomach. The screams and tears that my husband had to console me through. I knew this was out of the ordinary for me but I put it down to exhaustion and hormones and that when I had my son this would all go back to normal."
"My symptoms got worse and worse, I would lie in bed at night paralysed by fear, lying in a disgusting pool of sweat. All the while, my husband lay next to me none the wiser as to what was happening."
Read Olivia's Story >
" Every time I closed my eyes, my mind would play endless loops of scenarios involving my child being harmed and me not being able to protect him. This would jolt me awake. My body would flood with adrenaline and I was consumed with white hot rushes of fear. My heart would race. I was panicked."
"When anxiety hits it's such an overwhelming feeling, a rising heart that petrifies you to think about what will happen when you reach your boiling point. Everything and everyone is a trigger, your hands tremble and for me my head shakes."
Read Rachael's Story >
"When you are experiencing depression and/or anxiety, it seems so far-fetched that you can ever get out of the horrible depressive, dark, consuming state of mind but I am living proof that is possible."
Read Rebecca's Story >
"I couldn't relax and felt a constant dread…I wanted to run away from my life. I couldn’t stand the weight of responsibility of caring for my baby. I thought I was losing my mind or having a breakdown. I felt numb and miserable."
"I didn’t think that I could cope with the demand of being a parent every day. I felt so desperate that I had thought maybe if I gave the baby to someone else to look after, until I felt better, that it would help."
Read Shannon's story >
"I never thought it would happen to me. I was a successful career woman who has everything in control. Little did I know that I was a prime candidate for developing postnatal depression and/or anxiety."
Read Sue's Story >
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