When a child arrives in our lives, we quickly forget ourselves. The lack of time, the famous mental load, or the desire to devote oneself body and soul to one’s baby sometimes take over. And yet… For the balance of the whole family and your own happiness, it is essential to think about yourself when you become a mother. We went to meet Marine Deffrennes, co-founder of the media Les Louves and the My Louves program, to follow her advice.
Why is it important not to forget yourself when you become a mother?
Whether it is the first or the third time, the arrival of a child requires so much availability and energy, and we want to do well, that we naturally put ourselves in the background. It is obvious that we forget ourselves a little when we become mothers, but we always gain by keeping a place for ourselves. Our well-being is reflected in the way we welcome our child and in the way we live the more complicated moments: fatigue, crying, the body after the birth… For us, it is a state of mind to have from the moment of pregnancy: to find pleasure, to listen to each other, to communicate as a couple on what we are experiencing, to stay tuned to what we feel, to prepare ourselves without losing ourselves. It is this concern for the well-being of women that has guided the entire My Louves project: a program that invites you to listen to yourself during pregnancy and the postpartum period.
How do you get into good habits from the start, as soon as you are pregnant and/or when your baby is born?
During the pregnancy, we are very well followed medically, but on the level of the affects and the emotions, it is the big void. We need to feel supported and accompanied, a kind presence that asks us “and if not you, how are you? The good habits to adopt would be to put words on what we feel, and to identify what we need, what we don’t want to let go of, what deserves that we spend time on it, like walking, sleeping, painting or running, and to set aside time for the two of us to continue to talk as a couple… This is unique to each of us, but it is essential because our identity is challenged when a child arrives. We always need to refocus, to know who we are. Once again, this is what we want to offer to women in the My Louves experience: a caring place, a “safe place” to exchange between moms in talking circles and in Live with people trained to listen to future and young mothers.
How do you think about yourself when you are alone or have no help?
This is too often the case in the postpartum period, because the second parent’s leave, even if extended, only lasts 25 days, and even more so if you are a single mother. However, when you become a mother, you ask yourself a thousand questions about your baby and yourself, and you need to be surrounded. We asked psychologists about this, and they are quite reassuring: if you are a single parent, you can find in someone you trust the resources to cope, to be listened to and supported. Midwife, friend, sister, brother, PMI caregivers, you can also turn to competent people. In the My Louves program, we put our members in touch with psychologists specialized in maternology, consultants certified in perinatal psychology, nursery nurses or breastfeeding consultants, and even coaches to provide concrete tools for personal development and organization. All these good fairies are precious to allow young mothers to trust each other and find their own way, without forgetting themselves…
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