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Parenthood

Dads & Co-parents

Becoming a new father or co-parent is one of the most profound life changes one can experience. The transition into parenthood is a unique adaptation period, unlike anything else. While the focus often falls on caring for the partner and the baby, it’s crucial to recognise the significance of the father's or co-parent's mental health during this time. Your well-being is a key part of parenthood, and taking care of yourself is essential for the entire family's health.

The Overlooked Reality of Perinatal Mental Health in Men

Historically, research, media coverage, and support around perinatal mental health have predominantly focused on women. As a result, new fathers and co-parents might feel this area is less relevant to them. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Research indicates that 1 in 10 dads and co-parents experience postpartum depression and anxiety, with higher rates observed when babies are 3 to 6 months old. These symptoms are increasingly recognised, diagnosed, and treated, highlighting the need for awareness and support for fathers and co-parents.

Witnessing Birth: A Potential Trauma for Dads and Co-Parents

For many new fathers and co-parents, witnessing the birth of their child can be a deeply unsettling and even traumatic experience. Whether it’s a straightforward delivery, an instrumental delivery, or an emergency caesarean section, the experience can be distressing. Recent media focus on birth trauma often centres on women, but dads and co-parents can also be traumatised, even if the mother is not. Trauma is subjective and depends on individual experiences rather than the event itself. Many partners describe feeling like helpless observers, powerless to alleviate their loved one's pain.

Post-Birth Challenges and Emotional Well-being

After bringing your little one home, time can feel like it's simultaneously standing still and flying by. The days may drag on, yet weeks and months seem to pass in a blur. New fathers and co-parents often face intense, overwhelming emotions and a need to appear strong for their partner and family, which can take a toll on emotional well-being.

Paternity leave, typically just a couple of weeks, might not feel sufficient. Adjusting to this new life, often on minimal sleep, while balancing work and home responsibilities can be incredibly challenging.

I offer support for both parents or carers, please feel free to explore my website or make contact via the contact page to book a FREE initial telephone conversation.

My Approach

As a counsellor, my approach is integrative, combining various therapeutic techniques and modalities to tailor treatment to each client's unique needs and circumstances. This approach benefits you as a client in several ways. Firstly, it allows for a personalised and flexible treatment plan that can adapt to your changing needs over time. By drawing from different theories and techniques such as cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), Transactional Analysis, mindfulness practices, Gestalt approaches and EMDR I can offer a holistic perspective that addresses all aspects of your concerns. This comprehensive approach fosters deeper self-awareness, promotes insight into underlying issues, and facilitates meaningful and sustainable change. You will also benefit from having a range of tools and strategies at your disposal as we build your own unique took kit to support you in your daily life, empowering you to develop coping skills, enhance self-regulation, and build resilience. Overall, an integrative counselling approach recognises the uniqueness of us all and aims to provide a supportive and effective therapeutic experience that promotes growth, healing, and well-being.

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My Approach
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