She is the best thing ever … she exceeded any expectations or hopes we had.

This is how I would summarise my experience with our Pregnancy Pal.

My partner has a disability but helps looking after our daughter. I had suffered from severe post-natal depression after a difficult birth when I had my first daughter four years ago. Since then, I have been feeling so low that I was actually considering suicide at times. I am not good with things being taken out of my control. So when I became pregnant again, other people set up appointments for me with midwives, doctors, consultants, nurses and other health professionals without telling me what they were for. I found this very confusing and I felt extremely helpless and alone. Eventually someone recommended to get in touch with Parents 1st.

I was matched with a Pregnancy Pal who was also a birth buddy. She was there for me at every step throughout my pregnancy and beyond. I could tell her anything and sometimes we would just chat. She would go with me to all medical appointments and help me understand what was happening. Then, when my second daughter was born, things didn’t go according to plan as there were several complications. I needed extensive pain relief and eventually a C-Section. However, my Pregnancy Pal was with me all the way, helping me understand what was happening to me and my baby. Eventually, when they put my daughter into my arms, I just laughed and cried at the same time with relief.

I believe that having my Pregnancy Pal has helped me enormously so that I didn’t develop postnatal depression again. I remember there was a woman I got talking to in the waiting room at the health centre who appeared to be struggling with being pregnant for the first time. I advised her to go to Parents 1st and really hope she went there as well.