Birth debriefing gives you an opportunity to talk openly and honestly about your experience of birth, with someone who is trained to support you in telling your story, so that your story is heard and acknowledged. Birth debriefing can help you make sense of not only the events that happened during and surrounding your birth but also the array of deep emotions and feelings that went with it and still continue. It is not uncommon for women and men to experience strong ongoing emotions but have trouble recognising exactly what those are, leading to difficulties in moving forward. Guilt, shame, failure, anxiety, anger can all be experienced in the months and years following a birth, particularly when the experience goes unprocessed with unanswered questions. Even more so when surrounding family and friends don’t seem to understand your perspective of your birth. Debriefing with an experienced counsellor can give you the support you need to fill in gaps, and integrate the experience of your birth into your life without these troubling emotions continuing.
Birth debriefing is for anyone who feels they may be affected by the experience of birth, especially Dads. Dads enter the birth space baring witness to their partner experiencing intense physical and emotional distress, which often leads to them feeling somewhat helpless in protecting them. This, compounded with fear of the unknown, lack of communication from medical staff, and potential medical emergencies can leave dads feeling traumatised. The want to stay strong to support their partner and new baby can add to feelings of distress, isolation, anxiety, confusion or failure. Birth debriefing can help Dads make sense of their perspective of the birth, clarify events and feelings, provide answers to questions, and provide tools for moving forward.
Most women and men don’t seek support for their birth experience straight away. Some months after, some years after their birth. And that’s ok. Birth can affect mums and dads in ways that may not surface early in parenting, or it may be difficult to even acknowledge its impact until much later on. Logistics, survival mode, numbness, shock, avoidance… there are many reasons for this. But there is no right or wrong time to access support for your birth experience. It is never too late to speak with someone about your birth.
During your session I will work with you to tell your story, piecing together your experience, and the thoughts and emotions you have surrounding each part of it. We will work to gently unravel the meanings your birth holds for you, the pieces that cause difficulties for you, the questions you need answers for, and how you may begin to heal moving forward. The session itself is 2 hours, with the option of moving to ongoing counselling if that is something you feel you want.
For more details about my birth debriefing sessions, including pricing and bookings, please see here.
Additional birth trauma counselling is also available.
Details of my monthly women’s support group can be found under the ‘events’ tab on my Facebook page.