For many people, nothing can compare to the joy that motherhood allows.
But despite the happiness that pregnancy brings, some women are still prone to experiencing sadness — and that’s not their fault. According to a recent study, about one in seven women may experience postpartum depression in the year after giving birth, which makes mental health a key concern for pregnant women and their loved ones.
If you’ve got a loved one who is expecting or just gave birth and is experiencing a rough patch, your first reaction may be to cheer them up and help them get back on their feet. However, there are times when our support can only do so much. If you want them to overcome their mental health issues and enjoy their new motherhood chapter to the fullest, convince them to see a mental health professional. Below, we provide some tips on how to encourage a loved one to go to therapy.
Be Mindful of Your Approach
No matter how well-meaning your advice and actions may be, not being cautious with your approach can affect how your loved one sees therapy and mental health treatment. Plus, expecting moms are more prone to mood swings, since they experience a dramatic change in their hormone levels. As such, you need to be even more sensitive about how you open up this discussion with them. One way to do this is by listening carefully to what the other person says and being observant of the smallest of actions or details. Doing so can help you be more empathetic with your words and make them more likely to open up.
Plus, people are more open to listening and receiving advice when they’re in a good mood. So, try to talk to them when they’re doing something enjoyable like during a walk outdoors or while having dinner at their favorite place.
Let Them Know That They Have Options
Some people feel put off with therapy because they believe that therapists judge their patients harshly and are only doing it for the money. If an expecting loved one feels this way, it can be helpful to let them know that they have plenty of options when it comes to mental health care. Therapy is only one of the many treatment options available for this; there are also counseling and support groups for those who want alternatives to psychotherapy.
Don’t forget to let your loved one know that they can have access to different professionals who are more than ready to help them recover. For instance, they can talk to nurses who specialize in mental health if they want to improve and understand their current mental state. As one of the most popular careers in nursing, nursing specialists with a concentration on mental health are authorized to assess and diagnose mental health disorders, as well as recommend needed treatment plans. Besides that, counselors, psychologists, social workers, and even primary care physicians can also help your loved one get a grasp on their mental health and further encourage them to go to therapy.
Emphasize That They’ll Have Their Privacy
As we’ve mentioned, some people are afraid of going to therapy for fear of being judged and discriminated against. This is especially apparent in expecting moms, as society perceives pregnancy to be one of the happiest moments a woman can have in her life — making feelings of remorse highly stigmatized. While this fear is valid, not helping them manage their mental health issues may cause your loved ones to suffer and even put their baby at risk. So to motivate them to get help, assure them that what is spoken during their therapy sessions will stay between them and their therapist. In addition, they can also try online therapy and telehealth if they’re really anxious about physically going to a therapist’s office.
It is crucial for expecting moms to stay on top of their overall wellbeing — and this includes their emotional and mental health. By encouraging your loved one to seek therapy, you can help them make peace with their troubles, ensure the health of their baby, and feel like their old selves again.
Article exclusively written for threelollies.com
By Raffy Jolene