Mother’s Day reflections, as #NotNeurotic comes to an end
As a women’s health journalist I’m always very conscious that Mother’s Day can be a challenging time for many people – whether you have a complicated relationship with your own mother, or your own fertility, or you’re grieving a loss. That’s why I wanted #NotNeurotic, the series I’ve been publishing over the last two weeks, to offer an alternative perspective – highlighting some of the voices and experiences we don’t so often hear when it comes to motherhood, parenting and perinatal healthcare.
Since the start of March we’ve looked at racial inequalities in maternity care, as well as what it’s like to be a non-binary parent navigating the very heavily gendered world of pregnancy and childbirth. We’ve covered miscarriage, infertility, pregnancy sickness, birth rights and birth choices. And we’ve seen how mothers are too often dismissed as neurotic, hysterical, or making a fuss about their children’s health.
If you’ve missed any of the posts from this series, do give them a read:
- I Am Not Your Baby Mother: ‘Black mothers’ lives still don’t matter. But at least I’m still alive to tell you that’
- [TW: miscarriage] #NotNeurotic: Misogynoir, Misdiagnosis and Miscarriage
- #NotNeurotic: ‘Having a positive birth experience helped me to feel confident and enjoy the process’
Many thanks to all our contributors: S Dorothy Smith, Nicola Chegwin, Vanessa Haye, Lui Sit, Shelly Nelson-Shore and Charlotte Howden, as well as Quercus Books for permission to share Candice Brathwaite’s experience, and Birthrights, for speaking to me about their work.
Thanks also to BetterYou and Madeleine Shaw for supporting this series. BetterYou’s sponsorship has allowed me to pay Dorothy, Nicola, Vanessa, Lui and Shelly for their work. I’m so grateful to Madeleine for giving up her own time to speak to me as well – her experience really goes to show, as Maria and Jo at Birthrights highlighted, what a difference it can make when you feel safe and well cared for during birth.
For the rest of March I’ll be focusing on Endometriosis Awareness Month, starting with a couple of posts this week that explore the impact of endometriosis on fertility. Although Vanessa touched upon her own experiences with infertility and IVF treatment in her #NotNeurotic guest post, infertility is still a subject that’s often missing from discussions around motherhood, so I’m really pleased to be able to share these women’s experiences.
To mark the end of the #NotNeurotic series, I’m running a Mother’s Day giveaway on my Instagram account. One (UK-based) Hysterical Women reader will win a year’s supply of one of the nutritional oral sprays from BetterYou’s new Madeleine Shaw range. Go to Instagram to find out more and enter.
Don’t forget you can also benefit from 15% off the entire BetterYou range (as a runner I personally love their transdermal magnesium bath flakes, sprays and lotions, so those come highly recommended!) using the discount code HYSTERICALWOMEN when you shop online at betteryou.com.
This code is valid until 30 April, for one use per customer, and excludes test kits and bundles.