Fern Britton has shared her experience of Postnatal Depression as part of Sport Relief's #MumTalk campaign to raise awareness of maternal mental health problems
Fern Britton has bravely spoken about her experience of Postnatal Depression in a bid to start a conversation about maternal mental health problems.
Contributing to a series of videos for Sport Relief titled #MumTalk, the former This Morning presenter confessed to having suicidal thoughts when she was in the grip of Postnatal Depression following the birth of her twin boys in 1994.
‘I was 37 when I was first diagnosed with Postnatal Depression and my twin boys were nine months old,’ the TV star revealed.
‘Everyone tells you that having a baby is going to be perfect, so you try to be the perfect mum. However, you’re not blooming at all, you’re blooming awful.’
She continued: ‘I was lonely, I was isolated. I didn’t feel myself. I wondered where I had gone.
‘And when all my jobs were done, I’d either go manic and clean the entire house, or I would go upstairs and think, ‘Now, how can I just kill myself?’
‘I was very deeply unhappy and I didn’t know why. It takes a long time to admit to yourself that you’re not who you were.
‘I felt lost, like a failure and I couldn’t identify with who I was anymore.’
Now 58, Fern also spoke of the sense of relief she felt when she was finally diagnosed with Postnatal Depression.
‘When the doctor told me what I was feeling was Postnatal Depression it was so liberating, I felt such a sense of relief that I wasn’t going mad,’ she said. ‘Once my family knew, I started to get better.’
She also had some words of advice for anyone who suspected they may be suffering from PND, adding: ‘Having been through this and getting better myself I would urge any mum who might be feeling in a dark place to tell someone – don’t wait! If you tell someone, you will get help, and you will get better.’
Between 10 and 15 percent of new mums in the UK are diagnosed with Postnatal Depression, although the actual figure is suspected to be twice as much.