“Try and talk to somebody about how you’re feeling as soon as possible”.

This is the advice that CWP perinatal peer support worker, Sophie Tolley, gives to prospective mothers struggling with their mental health in a special video. In the clip, Sophie shares her experience of accessing support from the service during her pregnancy and then in the months following the birth of her son.

From the initial GP consultation through to her involvement in compassion focussed therapy groups, Sophie takes us through her perinatal journey. It is hoped that by sharing her experience that Sophie can encouraged other mother’s to come forward and use the service.

The Cheshire and Merseyside Perinatal Service was launched in 2017 to provide specialist mental healthcare for women who were pregnant, or in the first year post pregnancy. It is provided by CWP in partnership with Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust and covers the whole Cheshire and Merseyside Integrated Care System.

Sophie is especially qualified to discuss the care provided by the team both as a service user, and now as a peer support worker for the team.

Sophie says: “There are lots of community peer support groups going on but if that level of care isn’t sufficient then you may be referred to your specialist perinatal mental health team which is the team that supported me throughout my journey and I can’t recommend them enough.”

To find out more about the service you can follow them on X at @cmperinatal.