Why Maternal Mental Health Matters…a Stanley Common mum's story

Published on: Tuesday, 28th April 2020
Stanley Common mum and business woman Sarah Banks

A borough mum and businesswoman Sarah Banks understands the effects maternal mental health can have on women, which is why as we enter Maternal Mental Health Matters week on May 4th she is speaking out about her own experiences on this often taboo subject in the hope of encouraging more women to open up. 

With one in 10 of women reported to struggle with their mental health during or post pregnancy this is a really vital issue and like other mental health issues maternal mental health doesn’t discriminate when it comes to age, wealth, ethnicity or religion, it is not something you can always see but it is something that people still too often feel uncomfortable talking about, for fear of judgement or a fear that they will be seen as lacking, something that Sarah, from Stanley Common, can relate to. 

She said: “Becoming a Mum changed my life, but it wasn’t easy, and I found that the transition from one to two children was quite difficult.  I found it really hard to share how I was feeling as having suffered with mental health problems as a teenager, I was worried about being judged and people saying I wasn’t a good enough parent, something I am sure many people can relate to. 

“When I returned to work my mental health was suffering, it had been fragile after having both of my daughters, but no one prepares you for the transition from full time Mum to part time everything!  There was never any downtime or time for me, and this made life quite difficult. Returning to my job at the university added to these feelings of failing as it left me feeling I could not cope and was not being a great employee or mother.” 

A chance conversation with a mum at the school gates encourage Sarah to do something that would help her get some control over her mental health, she set up her own business online business consultancy Banks’ Business Solutions. 

Starting the business gave her a new sense of freedom and the ability to manage her time and mental health better. 

Sarah continued: “I wish I had opened up more as it is only by talking about how we are feeling as we adjust to parenthood that we can really loose the stigma attached to mental ill health and support each other more. I was too scared to go to the doctors but helped myself by throwing myself into my business and practising yoga and meditation.” 

Whilst these methods helped Sarah manage her mental health those who have concerns about their mental health are advised to seek professional support. You can follow initiatives for Maternal Mental Health Matters Awareness week by using the hashtag #maternalmhmatters 

For more information about Sarah and her work visit www.banksbusinesssolutions.co.uk or email sarah @ banksbusinesssolutions.co.uk 

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