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Action on Postpartum Psychosis

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Career in mental health

Isabella-2016 profile image

Hello!

I went through psychosis last year and I’m potentially thinking to go down a career in mental health (one day). I’m just wondering if you could think of any careers that are specific to working with mother and baby/ families?

A mother and baby psychotherapist or family therapist perhaps. Do you get to work with mother and baby as a mental health nurse?

3 Replies

Hi Isabella

Welcome to the APP community - it's great to hear that you are beginning to think about your next career steps after experiencing postpartum psychosis last year. It's definitely something that many women feel they want to do after going through such a difficult experience - and I know from my own roles since having PP in 2005 and 2011 that it can be so rewarding to have a job where you are supporting other families.

There are a number of clinical roles in specialist perinatal mental health services (community teams and inpatient Mother & Baby Units) where you work directly with mums, babies and the wider family. There are also often Peer Support Worker roles in the NHS and with charities like APP where you directly use your own lived experience to support families. I worked as a Senior Peer Support Worker in Exeter MBU and it was a really rewarding role. Do keep an eye on the APP Facebook page as we also advertise paid Peer Support roles working alongside the NHS.

Clinical roles such as Occupational Therapist, Mental Health Nurse and Healthcare Assistant are all able to specialise in perinatal mental health, but you would often need experience in a general mental health setting first. Nursery Nurses also work in MBU's supporting mums directly with care for their baby. Clinical Psychologists can specialise in perinatal or parent-infant mental health - and the route in to a Clinical Psychology masters degree is usually through Assistant Psychologist roles in mental health services first.

Do keep in touch if you have any questions about these types of roles and we will do our best to find out about how to get into training and the career path for perinatal mental health clinicians. Wishing you all the best in your thinking and planning about the next steps...

Warm wishes

Naomi

Hi lovely, thank you so much for all of this info! Given me a lot to think about and look into 😊

Hi,

Just saw your post and though I would reply. I also had PPS which was Dec 2016 with one relapse due to thinking I could Come off the medication sooner that I should have. Time has passed and my life is so much better. I am a qualified senior Occupational Therapist I have worked in Mental health and physical health settings I made the decision to just work in physical health after my PPS until I felt strong enough to step back into the mental health space if I still wanted too. I am keen to support mothers and during my recovery I set up some support groups and carried out well being sessions doing this also support me in my own recovery. I have been mindful not to over commit myself as working with others that have gone through the same experience can be triggering. I now feel far enough into my recovery to start giving back more I have a goal to set up my coaching type service for mums this will take time its a long term goal. I work 30hr a week in a physical health setting and have only just started to think about offering short burst of volunteering in a mother and baby type setting to see how it feels. I would recommend taking opportunities to explore what the options are so shadowing different professional such as nurse and Occupational Therapist and set short and long term goals. so it might be some like short term to explore all options shadowing people, volunteering and long term it might be to explore training options and professional career options. These are just my initial thoughts happy to take questions. If there is a delay it's just became I don't always check my emails. Wishing you well on your own journey well done. Much love Esther xxx

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