Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Don't fail new mothers!

I am speaking to midwives in Wales this week for the Royal College of Midwives

A press release has been issued:
Women who find becoming mothers difficult should not be treated as "failures", a midwives' conference is to be told.
Campaigner Elaine Hanzak is set to speak to Welsh midwives later this week - calling on them not to worsen the "guilt" that some women feel.
The conference will be discussing the mental health of new mothers - and Ms Hanzak will urge midwives to understand the threats to women's well-being.
She said: "The celebrities who are featured in the glossy magazines give the impression that within two weeks after giving birth you should be back in your size 8 white jeans and be a yummy mummy and a domestic goddess who is a whizz with organic pureed carrots.
"Just because a new mother had to have an emergency section, was poorly and unable to breast feed should not make her feel she has 'failed' - yet some health professionals and society make mothers feel like failures if they have an emergency section, are poorly and unable to breastfeed."
She said women were given an "idealised" picture of birth and motherhood by the media - and that this played a big part in triggering post-natal depression.
Ms Hanzak stressed that even women who wanted their babies, had a steady income and a steady relationship could not be expected to "sail" through pregnancy.
More than 200 midwives are expected for the conference in Cardiff on Thursday.
Helen Rogers, Royal College of Midwives director for Wales, said: "The day promises to be lively and informative, and I very much hope that the midwives attending the conference will gain a great deal towards understanding an often overlooked issue."


Although I will make these comments I also stress how much admiration I have for midwives and think they do a great job!

Elaine Hanzak


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