Supporting each other
Only mothers can formally be diagnosed with a perinatal mental health problem. However, studies suggest that fathers can also experience perinatal mental health problems.
It can be difficult to talk about how you are both feeling. It is hard to balance all aspects of life, work / home / new baby / finances and all of this can be become stressful for both of you.
Offering the right support to each other if you see signs of perinatal mental health issues emerging can be challenging. It can be tough to know how to help your partner and you may feel whatever you say or do is not helping.
“Supporting someone with a mental illness is one of the biggest challenges”
If your partner is not already doing so you must encourage them to seek professional help, the sooner they do the quicker they will recover. Postnatal depression is a serious illness but it is possible to get better.
Asking for help
It can be really difficult to feel able to talk openly about how you're feeling when you become a new parent. You might feel:
- Pressure to be happy and excited
- Like you have to be on top of everything
- You worry that you are being judged
- Worried you're a bad parent if you're struggling with your mental health
- Worried that your baby will be taken away from you if you admit how you're feeling
But it's important to ask for help or support if you need it. You're likely to find that there are other parents who feel the same as you.Meet the parents talking about mental health
There are many health professionals and organisations who you can talk to about your mental health during this time, and they are there to provide you with support during you and your partner’s journey.
If you are finding it hard to cope please speak to your GP, health visitor, midwife or obstetrician. Alternatively, you can refer yourself for talking therapies by visiting the Mind Matters website using the button below and clicking the self-referral icon.Visit the Mind Matters website