Some of you who have been following me for a while may have already noticed the change to my blog name! For those of you that haven’t, it’s now – The Unfiltered Mum!
The reason for the change is I just felt it was getting a tad stale, and very much the same thing over and over. So, my plan is to make it more focused upon parenting, and mental health. As that’s a pretty good summary of my life! I’m a mum and I have ongoing daily battles with my mental health. Namely, Bipolar Disorder and Anxiety. This can make parenting very challenging, but thankfully for me, I have a great support network in place. My husband is my ultimate hero! He’s my rock and supports me through the good, the bad and the ugly times. I’m aware that living with me, is like living with a ticking time bomb. By the nature of Bipolar Disorder, it’s very unpredictable. Even whilst on medication, that has kept me stable for months, years even, I can still relapse at any time. Sometimes there’s a trigger, sometimes there isn’t. Often it’s brief and passes quickly with a medication tweak, but sometimes it can knock me back for a while. However it affects me, my husband is always there. Whether it be letting me have some time out for that all important self-care, like a bath or a nap. Or, making that call to get me the help I need pronto. He knows me better than I know myself and can spot the signs of an episode long before I do most of the time. I’ve always prided myself though, in my ability to know when I’m losing control and need some extra professional support. That’s something that all the doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists and support workers have praised me on. I’m very aware of my own mind, and can usually spot when something isn’t quite right, and reach out before it gets out of control. There’s only been a couple of occasions where I’ve not noticed, and both of those times have been severe episodes, before the diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder. Since that diagnosis and a lot of research on the condition, I’ve learned a lot about the disorder, how it can manifest into an episode (whether that be depression or mania), and most importantly, my triggers. I also have a wellbeing plan in place, that states what I can do to self-help if I need to, who I need to contact if I can’t, and other useful bits of information to help keep me well and stable.
In the past, I’ve done Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), both in a group setting and via online with a therapist (kind of like a chat room set up, 1-1 with a CBT therapist). I’ve found it to be really helpful, and I can often use some of the techniques I learned to help myself through a bad episode. It is hard sometimes, but my determination and inner strength usually get me through. I only have to look at my beautiful daughter, to see why I’ve got to keep fighting and staying strong. She needs her mummy, and I will always do everything in my power to get myself well and be there for her.
Parenting is hard, that’s a fact; for any parent, there’s stress, anxiety and hard times. So for me, to have the addition of mental health struggles too, it becomes quite hardcore sometimes. But since having my daughter, I’ve grown in inner strength and my whole outlook on life changed that moment I found out I was pregnant. It wasn’t just about me anymore, there was this whole new life growing inside of me, and I made a vow to myself and to my baby, to forever protect that life. I don’t always get it right, but I always do my best, and that’s good enough. I am enough. I’m by no means perfect, and there’s no such thing as a perfect parent either. We’re all just winging it most days!! If anyone claims to be perfect, just laugh and walk the other way! I’ve encountered many “perfect” mums on social media, that always jump on the vulnerable and criticise their parenting, which just isn’t fair at all. Especially first time mums, who are already incredibly anxious and scared about becoming a mum. There’s genuinely no need for any woman, to put down another, or to tell them that they’re doing it wrong. Everyone has their own ways of doing things, and we’re entitled to do just that. What works for one family, won’t work for the next. There is no parenting textbook and babies don’t come with instructions! You have to do what’s right for you, your baby and your family. Just because someone does it one way, doesn’t mean that you have to do it the same. If it doesn’t work that way for you, don’t stress about it! Find a way that works for you, and go with it. Just do you! We’re all constantly learning, developing and adapting to parenthood, whether we have 1 or more children (as no 2 children are the same! even siblings!). There’ll always be changes in guidelines, as more research is carried out and technology advances. But at the end of the day, as long as your child/children are loved, cared for and fed, that’s what matters the most. There’s no such thing as too much love for a child, the world is a big and scary place, even for us as adults! So it must be super terrifying for someone so small. Put yourself in their shoes for a moment, sit down on the floor and look up at the world around you. It’s daunting and terrifying, and you’re going to feel vulnerable. It’s a perfectly natural feeling, and when we feel loved and safe, it makes it a lot less scary!
Anyway, I endeavor to be more active on my blog going forward, and (hopefully) posting relevant things about parenting and mental health. I hope that you enjoy following my blog, and find it informative, eye-opening and perhaps a little bit humorous?! (I do try!).
If there is any content that you would like to see, please feel free to get in touch. I’m happy to interact with my followers, anytime.
I’ve also become an Amazon Associate; which means you’ll see selected ads, relevant to the topics discussed in my blog. I’ll try to include things like recommendations and reviews from my own personal experience of products, whether that be from a mum perspective or just a product that I’ve loved and thought perhaps other people might like to try!
Thank you, once again, for following my blog, and I’m looking forward to the future of it and getting to know you all 🙂