Anxiety & Panic, Postnatal Depression, Uncategorized

So Now The World Knows

This past week I set up a local online support group for my area. ‘Lotus Petal PND’ An online Facebook page and Twitter account to offer peer support, it was something I was searching for when I was first diagnosed. I longed to talk to other parents near me who ‘got it’ but I couldn’t find anything local. So after three years of hoping something would come up, and now feeling I’m recovering I decided to set it up myself. I’m not offering medical advice, just peer support and friendship locally. Hopefully it will guide people to reach out for the professional advice they deserve, but mostly just help people feel less alone in what can be an isolating illness.

To get the word out locally, I took the step to ‘admit’ my postnatal depression and anxiety to everyone I know. Even though I am comfortable talking about it, I was still slightly nervous, wondering what reaction I would get. I was overwhelmed with the amazing response I had.

Be Kind
Be Kind

It’s a shame that I felt I was confessing something to everyone, but I am so glad I did now. Not only has everyone been supportive, but I don’t feel I need to hide anything anymore. And the best part of all is that people who have been privately suffering have also been messaging me, surprised I was suffering and relieved to know they aren’t alone.

This is exactly why I took these steps, reaching out to people so they can feel less alone. Letting them know that you can get better and offering that hope. I’m hoping in the future I can set up a physical group for people in my local area to meet up and gain friendship. I hope I can raise awareness for perinatal mental illnesses and lessen the incorrect stigma connected to it.

One of the main things people said to me was ‘I had no idea you were suffering’ – so how many other people might be suffering and we have no idea? Those parents out there who are putting a front on to the world but struggling behind it? Most people had no idea because I didn’t want them too. My point is – just because someone seems to be coping, they may not be. There’s a quote I really feel is appropriate for this –

‘Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind. Always’

No one knew what I was going through, but the times people checked in on me or did something kind, it really made a difference. The more perinatal mental illness is talked about the less of a stigma will be attached to it, then hopefully more parents who are struggling will feel comfortable coming forward and getting the help they need. That’s what I hope my group can do.

Sarah 🙂 @lotusPetalPND #LotusPetalPND

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6 thoughts on “So Now The World Knows”

  1. Sarah, your posts are amazing. You should feel so proud of how far you have come. I couldn’t stop crying reading them, because I can relate so closely to nearly every point you made. I too shared my struggle with pre and post natal depression yesterday and I was so scared to tell it because I was worried about how it would be received and now I am so so glad I did, because everyone loved it. Like yourself, people were so shocked that I was in that dark place and that they wouldn’t have known because I to, as bubbly and outgoing on the exterior but inside I am constantly questioning my thoughts, feeling guilty for my emotions, secretly hating some people and for no reason at all. You are an inspiring woman and I can see how your blog and group will encourage so many other women to speak out or to have at the very least realise they are not alone. Thank you for your honest account of pnd and motherhood. Keeley xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your kind comment xx it means so much when people contact to say they can relate, it’s so scary to finally tell people, but I feel so much better now I have, I’ve got nothing to hide anymore, hiding it was exhausting in itself! I just hope to help others who find themselves in a similar position That I once was. Fingers crossed the group goes ahead soon and more mums can be helped xx thank you for reading and for your lovely comment xx

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  2. Coming out to other people is so frightening. Most people close to me know what I went through but not all and taking that final leap is scary. Massive well done for what you’re doing. Off to find your FB group x

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    1. Hello, sorry I’ve on,y just seen these comments, I agree it is frightening, it’s a shame us suffering feel we have to hide, hopefully as more of us speak up it will make it easier for others to feel they can be open about it, well that’s what I am hoping! Thank you for your comments, it’s nice to hear from other mums xxx

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      1. Yep, hopefully things are changing. Since it happened to me I make a point of checking in with all new mums I know, just to make sure they know they have somewhere to turn if they don’t feel right, you know?

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