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Closed 13/12/2018
Foundation for Mother and Child Health

HOW ARE YOU, DAD? Raising awareness of mental health issues in new fathers.

Fathers can be affected by mental health issues around childbirth, too. Mark Williams is an advocate for raising awareness and helping fathers get the support they need. Please help us make a short film to raise awareness and help early recognition.
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Closed on 13/12/2018
RCN 1117795

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It is well known that more than 1 in 10 mothers suffer with mental health illness such as anxiety or depression around the time of their child's birth. Sadly there is less awareness of the fact that many new fathers, up to 1 in 10, also struggle with changes associated with childbirth. They may be unsure of their new role and struggle with new responsibilities, suffer from sleep loss, have financial worries, experience changes in their relationship with their partner, have a previous history of depression or experience feelings of trauma after their child was born.

Traditionally, men have been brought up not to express their feelings and may be less likely to seek help. Some may self medicate - through alcohol use, for example. Some men find they become more irritable or angry. Some men may contemplate self harm or suicide.

Left untreated, maternal and paternal mental health issues may have an impact on the health, wellbeing and happiness of their children. But if recognised and treated, mothers and fathers will recover.

If we can raise awareness, help recognise and treat mental health illness at the time around childbirth, it will help families around the world.

FMCH UK recently collaborated with ForMed Films and other NGOs to produce a very successful short animated film: 'Perinatal Positivity'. The film highlights the importance of mental wellbeing during the perinatal period - the time during pregnancy and after.

The Foundation for Mother & Child Health (FMCH-UK) have now teamed up with Mark Williams of 'Fathers Reaching Out', to increase awareness, improve recognition and encourage early treatment of paternal mental illness in the time around childbirth.

We are aiming to do this through the production of another short animated film, made using real-life stories from fathers who have experienced mental ill-health during the perinatal period. We will be collaborating once again with ForMed films, other NGO's and health professionals, and the film will be freely available to share and download for all parents and professionals.

See what Mark has to say on the subject: How Are You, Dad?

You can help to make a real change to attitudes.

Please donate generously to help new fathers and their families.

About the charity

Foundation for Mother & Child Health works with parents and children in the UK, India and Indonesia to improve the health and wellbeing of families. In the UK we promote mental wellbeing around childbirth, raising awareness and early recognition of mental illness during the perinatal period.

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