May is Maternal Mental Health Awareness Month! #MomsMatter- Part 4

Real Moms, Real Stories- Part 4

I’m so thankful for Laura and her heart, as she shares her story about her difficult pregnancy and  postpartum journey, a mom that lost her mind and lost her daughter. Her story is filled with sadness and  difficult challenges that bring hope and courage for other moms.    In our interview you’ll hear Laura’s responses to some of these difficult topics from the fourth trimester.

“Its’ suppose to be the happiest time of your life and  what happens when it becomes a nightmare?”

Happiest time in your life is a nightmare #MomsMatter

  • What happen’s when you have a hard pregnancy?
  • What do you need to know when someone is on  bed rest?
  • What do you feel like when you are being judged for your parenting choices?
  • What happens when you feel like everything you are doing is going to “ruin your child for the rest of their life”?
  • What happens when you have a birth that you didn’t expect?
  • What happens when nursing your baby becomes overwhelming?
  • What happens when you don’t have the support in place?
  • What happens when we feel like “we are not good enough?”
  • What happens when life outside of new baby is not well:  your marriage, finances, illness?
  • What happens when we begin to think our child has “ruined our life”?
  • What happens when mom in crumbling in front of family and professional and no one steps up?

Watch my interview with Laura as she shares her story:

Ask for help #GetSleep #MomsMatter

If you or someone you know is experiencing any symptoms of any Perinatal Mood Disorders please reach out for support 

Local and National resource list

Connect with Laura at PSI of NC

As you may know, May is  Maternal Mental Health Awareness Month, but I  want to help us recognize  that #MomsMatter everyday, no matter what month it is!  And we shouldn’t take this topic lightly since we know that:

    • A new mom might not recognize depression or anxiety because she is tired, overwhelmed, or simply adjusting to life with a baby. 

Tweet: A new mom might not recognize depression or anxiety because she is tired, overwhelmed, or simply adjusting to life with a baby. #GetSleep

    • Women in every culture, income level, age, and race can develop Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders. 

Tweet: Women in every culture, income level, age, and race can develop Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders. #GetSleep #MomsMatter

    • 1 in 7 women will be affected by some form of Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders

Tweet: 1 in 7 women will be affected by some form of Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders #GetSleep #MomsMatter

Which means,  we most likely will know someone that is going through it, and we need to be prepared to have some of these hard, loving, and supporting conversations.   

In my role as a sleep coach, I hear about  sleep deprivation daily!  Mom, dad, baby, toddler, or preschooler, might not be getting all those sweet dreams, so there is  all the raw emotion that comes along with being tired.  Being tired is one thing. But being tired and anxious or depressed can make a sleep deprived situation go from bad to worse.   I know how hard my journey was when I first became a mom seven years ago.  I didn’t know what I didn’t know, but I wish I knew half of what I know now, which would have helped me tremendously.  I wish I would have known about local resources available to me.   But too many women, myself included, will choose to do it alone or in silence, which can be so harmful for our well being and the well being of our family.

I’ve had  the privilege of speaking with some wonderful guests in my interviews  as we begin to have real and necessary conversations about the fourth trimester, life with baby, and all the “junk” that can come with it.    Not everyone will speak freely about it, but I have to.   I see the pain that can be hidden behind those smiles saying “everything is fine, we are great, we are doing the best we can with baby,” or even some of joy we see on social media while  moms are in hiding at home in isolation.

As we explored Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders we discussed the symptoms, the risk factors and the need for a postpartum support plan, and resources available that are local to the Raleigh area and beyond.

Not only do moms matter, but their health and overall wellbeing matters too!

Great loss and turn it around #GetSleep #momsmatterPlease be sure to share Laura’s story with other moms in your network!    I know that when you have a sick friend or family member, you would do whatever you could do to help them.   You may never know the mom that you reach and you actually can help support her through this illness and fragile time in her life.  To learn more how you can get involved in the campaign for #MomsMatter visit: The National Coalition for Maternal Mental Health.   

About our special guest: 

Laura is an RN on the Perinatal Mood Disorder Inpatient Unit at UNC Hospital. It is the first inpatient unit of it’s kind in the country. We work with moms who are pregnant & postpartum that have a variety of mental health issues. 

2 thoughts on “May is Maternal Mental Health Awareness Month! #MomsMatter- Part 4

  1. Kelly Phillips says:

    Laura my heart was breaking for you as you told your story. I’m so sorry you didn’t get the support you needed. That OB should be banned from doing any kind of women-oriented practice! He made me SO MAD! It is simply inexcusable that a care-giver would be so rude and outright neglectful of his duty. We place trust in our OBs to get us safely through our pregnancies and that includes the mental and emotional parts. Thank you so much for sharing. I know there are women out there who will be saved because of your story and realizing they aren’t alone and there are people who will help them. You are amazing and courageous. Thank you!

    • Irene Gouge says:

      Kelly- thank you for your thoughtful comment for Laura. It’s an amazing story she shares and it’s her hope, and mine too, that maybe moms will support one another and bring awareness to the broken systems that are out there. Perhaps these opportunities to share and educate is what is needed to make change.

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