Natal Hypnotherapy blog - "The Gift of Postnatal Depression"

Stress Free Birth

Natal Hypnotherapy

Harriet Hancock Natal Hypnotherapist

07811 463457 / 01491 873728


When I was in the depths of postnatal depression floundering without hope in a sea of failure, I was lucky enough to find my way to some life changing encounters with some wise women who not only hauled me out of the pit of darkness but enabled me to find light, courage and warmth within that darkness. Today I’m inspired by my recovery to support other mothers to connect with their own courage, confidence and wisdom through my work running Mothers Relaxation classes.


I sought help from my GP when I found myself unable to keep my temper at times with my young children, swallowed up by my perceived failure to bring my children up perfectly, crushed by my inability to keep on top of household chores, daunted by the daily tasks of preparing meals, and so on.  I was tied up in knots trying to do my best as a mother and getting none of the feedback I was used to getting in my professional life that helped secure my self esteem before I had children.  I suffered under the weighty blanket of guilt for my lack of gratitude, after all, my journey to parenthood had been long and painful and I should have been nothing less than delighted by motherhood at all times, just like in the magazines!  And of course, the shame of depression.  The deep, terrifying shame of it all endlessly worrying if “they” would take my children away from me because of my failings and in my very worst moment, thinking they probably should.


Now that I’m out of the woods, I can look at that list of symptoms and see that my depression was the experience of the paralysing clash between the wise and patient woman and mother within me and the world that tells me my children must behave in a certain way and achieve milestones at set points and if they don’t, its my fault, my failure and I should have a clean and tidy house to boot.


Thank goodness I was diagnosed with postnatal depression and offered help because then began a new phase of my journey through life, finding inspiring and creative connections between my needs and the myriad wisdom and support that is there for the finding.  (Natal Hypnotherapy, Cognitive Based Therapy, EFT and Family Constellations with Tamara Donn, Red Tent Retreat to name but a few.) 


The very best help I got was from women who previously I had felt incapable of connecting with because they seemed to have it all - beautifully behaved children, patience without end, a clean and tidy home all whilst handknitting fairisle cardigans, baking sourdough and turning a pirouette on the pedestal on which I’ve placed them.    I have lost count of the times I’ve approached these kind of women and shared my sense of failure with them and been warmed by their own account of struggling with a sense of failure, anxiety, depression etc and finding their way out by finding their “tribe”. 


The cure for the loneliness and isolation of depression has been a tremendous gift.  I have had to find my “tribe” and connect with a collection of women who are powerful, intelligent, amusing, creative, competent and, most importantly, flawed, and I have discovered, dare I say it, that I am one of them!


As a mother, I am one of a long line of mothers that stretches back through centuries to the beginning of time and I am one of a circle of mothers that stretches all around our planet.  We are all the same … entrusted with the care of someone we hold precious, by turns daunted and inspired by the task.  Through being a part of this line and this circle of inherently wise mothers, I have everything I need for my journey.  Thank you!





Harriet Hancock  August 2014


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