* Suicide is the main cause of death in new mums in Aotearoa; 1 in 3 women consider their birth traumatic (1).
* Online support resources for NZ mothers experiencing birth trauma have been lacking until now.
* New resource, created entirely by volunteers, fills the gap in support services.
On International Maternal Mental Health Day (2 May 2018), a new birth trauma website was launched in Aotearoa/New Zealand.
The site serves Kiwi mothers, and their families, providing reassurance, validation and support after a negative or traumatic birth experience. My Birth Story offers suggestions of ways people can process their experience and has a strong focus on external support resources and organisations that can offer further help.
The website has been created by full-time mum, Kate Hicks, who saw a need for information and decided to fill it. Kate’s created the site voluntarily, in her spare time, and has had volunteers helping her complete the project.
“I came out of my own experience struggling to find information that was NZ-based or that wasn’t focused on certain mental health challenges. There wasn’t really anything specific to negative experiences around birth – I didn’t even know birth trauma was ‘a thing’ until about 4 months in to my mothering journey,” Kate said.
“I saw there was a need for online information that mums and others could access anonymously and in their own time which validated their experience and suggested further support. So, I talked to a bunch of professionals and other mums and decided to create My Birth Story. The site isn’t about blaming anyone for birth trauma happening, instead acknowledging that it happens due to various reasons and offering support for women and whanau after it has.”
See next page for the rest…