My recommendations for this project:
During a mother's health check visits at a hospital or medical center
- providing a helpline for all expecting mothers and their families.
- helpline should be able to help people using different languages.
- helpline should be able to provide help from experts in child birth starting from doctors, midwives, doulas and therapists.
- recommending groups in the mother's neighborhood and help connect.
- educating the mothers and other family members to form new groups.
- Assuring that they will always be heard.
My recommendations are based on my story.
When I was first pregnant with my son, I had so many questions/concerns and had to wait to meet with my midwife once a month to get my questions/concerns answered.
It felt great to know that I could leave a message to the midwife and that she could call me back at her convenience. But what would have really helped was some expert that I could reach out to hear out my questions/ concerns and make appropriate suggestions or recommendations. Later I became part of many social networking groups for mothers, participated in child birth classes, became part of mother groups in hospital which helped me over come a lot of my fears and made me believe in myself as a first time mom.
In my opinion, the recommendation of experts, hearing to first hand experiences of new mothers and constant support from my family helped me a lot during this phase. No amount of help can be enough help for expecting or postpartum mothers. What works in some cases may not work in other cases. As there is a saying - that it takes a whole village to bring up children which is very true.
From first hand experience I can think of two scenarios where helpline and being part of social networking groups immensely helped me.
As a first time mother I was never told about how to be prepared for healing from delivery stitches after a natural birth. It was a nightmare to go through the healing process inspite of having immense support from my husband and mother. There were medicines I could have taken and other remedies I could have followed to alleviate my pain. But it never occured to me to ask the doctor/ midwife, if I would have stitches or if I did how I can help myself to heal better. This was not tolerable pain to just bear it. I did my research online after I started suffering and called my midwife very late in the night asking if I could take certain medicines and do certain things to help myself. I so wish my doctor/midwife/doula had told me to be prepared about healing from stitches during natural birth. Although there is so much information available online I do not know what to trust and how it might effect my child if I followed any.
What finally helped me was a way to reach out to my midwife at odd hours and be able to ask for recommendations. So I trusted the expert.
I never saw or heard any child who would refuse to breast feed from day 1. That was my son who was never introduced to the bottle. I cried my lungs out as I did not know what to do. I had seen lactation consultants, child chiropractors, medicines to increase supply and everything else. Inspite of seeing all the experts and having so much support at home it took me 45 days after birth to successfully breastfeed my child.
I reached out about my problem in several mothers groups on Facebook where I learnt for the first time, that I am not the only mother facing such issues. There was abundance of information and articles shared by experts.
All the different recommendations on the groups helped me a lot and gave a feeling of being heard.
What difference do I make to the society based on my first hand experience?
Based on my experiences, I share my stories with all the expecting mothers and their families.
I suggest all the different groups that they can bart to get help with birth and postpartum.
Recommend my doulas and all the other help I received.