Hull charity urges parents to seek help for postnatal depression

Published: Monday 7th March 2016 by Tom Drinkall

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Hull charity House of Light is calling on mothers and fathers suffering from antenatal and postnatal depression to seek help.

House of Light has supported thousands of women and their families, but believe many still do not get support.

Manager Joanne Morton, who has experienced postnatal depression herself, said: “I did suffer. I had huge anxiety which I never had in the past. I was really really depressed. I did feel like ending it all to be honest. I was really really poorly. But you can and you do get better with the right help.

“It can get worse and worse really. I think for myself experiencing it, I put it down to being a new mum being tired and all the time I was becoming worse and worse. If it’s nipped in the bud earlier, it can be treated quicker. The longer it goes on, the more devastating effects it can have. Some women feel suicidal.

“Feeling tired all the time, feeling hopeless like there’s nothing to look forward to anymore, crying for no particular reason. There can be good and bad days, that’s the misleading thing with PND because you think, ‘Oh, I’m not too bad today’, but I think, if you’re struggling, just talking to somebody could be a massive relief.”

Postnatal depression can also affect men, with one in 10 fathers suffering from the condition during the first year of their child’s life.

Ms Morton added: “I think men in general, there’s that stiff upper lip, brave ‘get-on-with-it’ sort of thing. I think it can be difficult for men to come forward and talk about what they’re feeling.

“Having a baby is a massive life-changer and that’s for the dad as well. I think, for fathers, there can be a lot of pressure. They have to go back to work after their two weeks paternity leave. What they see in the delivery room, that can be traumatic for a lot of dads. If their wife is struggling, that has an impact on them. Where is their outlet? Who can they talk to?

“Anybody, men or women, (can be affected by) depression or anxiety for whatever reason. You don’t have to struggle alone. It’s nothing to feel embarrassed about. Please, come forward.”

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Published: Monday 7th March 2016 by Tom Drinkall

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