Society has told us that men should not express their feelings outwardly and although this is beginning to change with charities like MIND and CALM, it can still be difficult for men to openly express how they feel without a stigma attached. This can be especially hard when a baby has just been brought into the mix.
New fathers are often expected to provide support and hold things together while new mums get used to all of the new experiences around motherhood. They are expected to be stoic and strong and when a new dad doesn’t feel this way it can be hard to express this and get the help they need. Around 10% of new fathers experience Paternal Postpartum depression. It is often believed that postnatal depression is due to the hormones from giving birth to a baby, but this only plays a small part in the problem. While this can effect women’s mental health, all of the other factors, environment, social support, relationship changes, can all have an effect on the father too.
Postpartum Support International are looking at raising the awareness for new fathers who are struggling by taking a whole-family approach. This father-inclusive method allows new dads to feel as though they have a place in the family home, as not just a supporting role but a valued member of the family unit.
If you have experienced paternal postpartum depression or any other mental health problem, contact The Eaves on any of the numbers above or using the enquiry form and one of our team will be happy to help you source a counsellor to support you through this period.