There is no doubt that the pandemic has affected us all. But when it comes to new mothers especially, studies have found that postpartum mental health problems increased during this period.
And is that by not being able to have a normal life, many recent mothers have missed a very important element for the first months after giving birth: the very needy tribe.
One of them was the actress Mandy Moore, who through a live chat with a psychologist specializing in perinatal mental health, shared how lonely and intimidating it was to have a baby during the pandemic, something that many mothers have also experienced.
In this interesting conversation, Mandy began by talking about the clash between the expectations she had about the mother she thought she would be and the reality:
“Obviously I knew it would be somewhat challenging, but I thought ‘Maybe I naturally have a motherly side’ […] But I don’t think I really recognized the worries, the fears and that sense of responsibility that is always present once you become a mother.“shares the actress.
This is something that many mothers have undoubtedly experienced. Because even though we can prepare for those moments, the reality is that when you finally have your baby in your arms things are more complex than we thought and that can bring us many insecurities.
And that is precisely why the actress, in the company of the psychologist Ashurina Ream, opened up to share her experience with other moms. In her case, she became a mother for the first time five months ago, so she had to live her postpartum in the middle of the pandemic.
Something that was surprising to her was how lonely it is to have a baby when you don’t have the opportunity to have tangible experiences that at another time you could live postpartum, such as attending support groups for mothers or taking classes for mothers and babies:
“Isolation is something that has really impressed me and that I was not expecting“, she comments after sharing that this loneliness is one of the things that she did not imagine living when she thought about what her experience would be like when she finally became a mother.
On the other hand, he also spoke about a topic that I have addressed on other occasions in Babies and more: the change in your friendships and the way you socialize when you become a mother, which of course, are influenced by the change we experience in our priorities and our way of thinking:
“At times I have found it very difficult, until now that five months have passed, to maintain my friendships because we are all at different stages of our lives. I personally don’t have many friends who have babies. I have friends who have children who are a little older. So it’s been hard to find that community“.
He also mentioned that on many occasions when he cannot resolve a situation with his baby came to feel inadequate and insufficient, especially when your baby is three months old: “I was hit by a wave of feeling like it wasn’t enough“, he confesses.
Another point that they touched on in the conversation, and which is also something that many mothers (or most) can feel not only in times of pandemic, is the drastic change in care that occurs after childbirth:
“I have realized, like many other women, that a lot of emphasis is placed on the pregnancy, then the baby arrives and everything moves on. Nothing focuses on mom and postpartum like it used to. Women feel lost and forgotten […] … that energy that existed when you were pregnant is gone, everyone wanted to open the door for you, they paid attention to you, you went to the doctor and you felt on top of the world in that sense. But the baby arrives and everything is heading towards him. AND the baby should obviously be a priority, but mom should also be a priority with him“.
Among other things, Mandy also spoke of the guilt of leaving her baby for the first time to do something for and for her, but she shares that she is learning to be kinder to herself, understanding that having time for herself it is also necessary for your mental and emotional health.
Finally, the actress closed the talk with advice for all mothers: don’t be afraid to ask your friends and family for help, nor to approach those friends who already have children to ask them for some advice.
“I think it is essential to find people who can come to help you with the baby, so that you can take a shower, do yoga, meditate, go for a walk, take a nap or have the kind of self-care you want … because you need to find a way to take care of yourself too“.
In particular, she shares that something that helped her feel less alone is turning to mothers’ social media groups to find her community: “we have many resources at our fingertips and I think we are quite fortunate in this regard“.
Although each motherhood is unique and different, in the end, mothers share the same fears and doubts, so it is still necessary for someone with as many audience as she to talk about these issues, because help to know that you are not alone and that the things that many live in postpartum are more common than we think.
Photo | Instagram
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Actress Mandy Moore talks about how lonely it can be to become a mother during the pandemic