Around one in five women will experience a mental health issue during pregnancy or within a year after giving birth.
We know it can be difficult to express how you feel, and to try to share your feelings with those close to you. In our experience, being able to talk to someone that is not directly involved, like a counsellor, can be helpful.
Informing Choices NI’s pregnancy counselling service has over 30 years experience supporting those who have experienced complex emotions as part of being pregnant. Many of these feelings are often unspoken and can then feel unresolved.
Our service offers you a safe space to talk, and the support to begin to explore and understand thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment.
Whether it is through miscarriage, stillbirth or abortion, the loss of a pregnancy can have a huge impact on you and your family. It can often feel that society does very little to acknowledge this impact. This can create a sense of isolation, which in turn can lead to the belief that you have no right to express difficult feelings about your personal experience.
Many people experience trauma pre and/or post birth. It may be emotional or physical. It might relate to a difficult labour, an unplanned caesarean section, or emergency treatment during labour. Trauma can also be experienced when the birth was uncomplicated.
Postnatal depression or anxiety
Postnatal depression or anxiety can affect people in different ways. It can be experienced by women whether their pregnancy has been complicated or straightforward.
This is commonly experienced as a sense of isolation they feel, along with other emotions such as feeling sad and tearful for no apparent reason, struggling to cope with day to day tasks or feeling tired, irritable or angry. It can be difficult to understand and that can make it even more difficult to discuss.
People also say they can have intense feelings of fear and panic, intrusive thoughts and sometimes insomnia. At times all of these feelings can become overwhelming. This may go on for some months.
*To make an appointment with one of our counsellors please call 028 9031 6100
You can download our Post Pregnancy Counselling leaflet here.
*Due to demand for our post pregnancy counselling service, we currently have a waiting list of 12 months. We are working hard to secure additional funding to reduce this waiting time, however if you require therapeutic support more urgently please discuss this with your G.P. or Health Visitor.