‘It took me 18 months to finally feel beautiful in my own skin again!'

One brave mum has moved Instagram with her inspiring message about postnatal depression. Our midwife Sophie explains why it’s important to talk to your midwife if you're feeling low.

Pregnancy news 16/01/16

Florida-based mum of two, Alexandra Kilmurray, has wowed Instagram with a powerful image of her post-baby body. In the post she opens up about the ‘dark sides of motherhood and pregnancy’; mentioning her struggle with postnatal depression and the lack of self-esteem she experienced in the months after her children were born:

'It's been a long and hard postpartum ride for me…18 months after my first son and 5 months after my second son I feel like I can finally see the light.'

As well as discussing her own journey, Alexandra has sent a heartfelt message to other mums who may be experiencing the same:

‘Cheers to you mamas who are battling postpartum depression and still getting up everyday for your children! Cheers to you mamas who still cry about the marks on your skin from birthing your perfect babies! Cheer to motherhood, cheers to knowing that this too shall pass! And things will get better!’

It’s inspiring to see increasingly more mums being able to discuss their mental health and the difficult bits of motherhood openly online.

1 in 10 women experience mental health issues in pregnancy and parenthood. If you are feeling low during pregnancy or in the months after your baby is born, it is important to talk to your doctor or midwife, they are there to help.

Our midwife Sophie explains:

‘The postnatal period can be a stressful time for many mums; feeding, winding and changing your baby's nappy when you’re sleep-deprived is no walk in the park! It’s normal to feel a bit worried and exhausted in the first few weeks after giving birth. But if you continue to feel low it’s important to talk to your midwife. We’re there to help with your mental wellbeing too and can offer advice and support. Postnatal depression can affect anyone, no matter what your pregnancy or mental health history. Many mums struggle with body image following the birth but it’s important to recognise the enormous change that your body has gone through to produce your beautiful baby. There’s no rush to return to your pre-baby body and it’s important to remember that the images you see of celebrities or on social media are often Photoshopped and give an unrealistic impression.’

It’s great to see Alexandra speaking out about her ‘hard postpartum ride’ and giving a message of hope to mums that may be going through the same.

More on mental wellbeing in pregnancy

  • Woman looking sad and thoughtful.

    Postnatal depression

    Postnatal/postpartum depression is not 'baby blues'. It is prolonged feelings of feeling low. It can vary from mild to severe and it can affect women in different ways.

  • Woman looking concerned.

    How stressed or anxious should I be before I get help?

    Although it’s normal to have periods of worry and stress when you’re pregnant, some women have feelings that don’t go away and this can be a sign of something more serious.

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