February 2, 2017
Its Time to Talk!
If you had told me 3.5 years ago, whilst watching demons fly around my home threatening to kill my baby girl, that I would one day be sat on a sofa in Whitehall being interviewed by an MP to help raise awareness for a national mental health day, I would have thought that you were the crazy one!
However, it appears that sometimes the craziest of moments can happen when you are at your most well and lucid – The irony of this is not lost on someone who has suffered with her mental illness for the past 3.5 years, believe me!
But there I was, 3.5 years after being diagnosed with PND, 3.5 years of suffering through the hardest battle of my life, 3.5 years of feeling lost in a chasm of despair and 3.5 years of not recognising who I was anymore and all of a sudden I felt right where I should be. Sat on a sofa and making a difference through having a conversation with MP Nicola Blackwood (Health and Innovation Minister) to raise awareness of the national Time to Talk day!
Minister for Public Health and Innovation, Nicola Blackwood said,
“Olivia’s story is inspiring, and we must continue these conversations about perinatal mental health issues. Far too many women are suffering – I am committed to supporting them, and am optimistic about the future.
“We are funding new specialist services in the community, but money only goes so far and we must find a place in our society that allows for an open and welcoming dialogue for these parents. Time to Talk day is an excellent place to start.”
The terms Postnatal Depression and Postnatal Psychosis are not dirty words. They are not contagious. Nothing bad will happen to you for starting up a conversation that centres around them. However, the double edged sword of a maternal mental health illness is that it silences its victims through personal fear and shame and is muted, skipped around and ignored in society thanks to stigma and fear of the unknown. This needs to stop.
Time to Talk Day with the help of supporters like, MP Nicola Blackwood and all mums (those who have experienced a mental health illness aswell as those who haven’t) is vital to getting and most importantly keeping the conversation going. It is a crucial step towards making talking about our mental health as normal and acceptable as having a chat about sleep schedules and play dates at the school gates, baby groups and family gatherings.
Its time maternal mental health was part of the conversation….so what are you waiting for?
Its time to talk!
I am so proud to have been invited by The Time to Talk team to be interviewed by MP Nicola Blackwood on my experiences of PND and Postnatal Psychosis. I am so passionate about talking about maternal mental health as I feel it is vital to keep talking to help beat the stigma and help as many mums as possible know they are not alone. Therefore, I am inviting fellow mums to come and start their own conversations about their Mental health through sharing their experiences on The No Bull Mum Facebook page and here on the blog throughout Time to Talk Day on 2nd February. Come and join in! You can also follow Nicola Blackwood and her plans for putting Perinatal health on the political agenda @nicolablackwood and @DeptHealthPress