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"It’s not easy to admit that the worst time of your life was when your baby was born”

As many as eight out of ten new mums struggle in the weeks after birth. But as these stories are often hidden behind the filters of social media, new mothers are left to struggle with the difference between the fairytale and the reality.  Join author and mother Laura Dockrill for a raw and honest conversation as she breaks down taboos on birth and motherhood - and how she came through the other side.  

Joined by a very special guest to be announced next spring, Laura will tell her own story of postpartum psychosis after the birth of her first child, when she became paranoid and delusional and was institutionalised for a fortnight without her baby. 

Hopeful, practical and darkly funny at times, this conversation will explore Laura’s personal experiences and postnatal mental health more widely, break down some of the taboos around motherhood, and how family and friends - mothers or not - can be beacons of hope in a very bleak time.

Don’t miss this chance to hear Laura tell her story, break the silence on postpartum psychosis, and kickstart the conversation to spread a message to new parents that you are not alone.

There is an opportunity to buy a copy of What Have I Done?, RRP £14.99, for only £7.50 when booking your ticket. Laura will be signing copies after the event.

A one-night only event presented by WOW - Women of the World and Vintage Live.

 

  • What Have I Done?

  • 'A book to save a whole generation of women'
    Adele

    'This moving book was a pleasure to read and I didn't want to put it down. If anyone is going through a similar experience it will make them feel less alone'
    Philippa Perry


    This is a raw, courageous and honest recovery story that breaks the silence on one of life’s best-kept secrets. Written from the front-line of mental illness, this heartbreaking and uplifting memoir is about resilience, love and finding your way to the other side.

    Laura couldn't wait to meet her new baby. But as she went into labour things began to go wrong and Laura started to struggle. A traumatic birth, anxiety about the baby, sleep deprivation, a slow recovery – all these things piled up until Laura (like any new mum) felt overwhelmed.

    As many as 8 out of 10 new mums struggle in the weeks after birth. Laura had never experienced mental illness before and was reassured by family, friends and professionals that what she was feeling was ‘normal.’ But in Laura's case these feelings escalated scarily quickly into post-partum psychosis; a rare and debilitating illness. Within a matter of days Laura became paranoid, delusional and suicidal. And when her baby was just three weeks old, on Mother’s Day, Laura was institutionalised without her baby. Throughout this time she was haunted by a sense of: 'What have I done?'

    It wasn’t until Laura began to put her story into words (on her phone whilst her son slept) that she began to find herself again and recovery seemed within reach; these are those words.

    Despite this gruelling experience, Laura’s story is a hopeful one. Not only has she got better, she has come out the other side stronger and more assured. Now she is determined to break the stigma around post-natal mental health, shatter the romanticised expectations of perfect motherhood, and to empower parents: you are not alone.

    *ONE OF STYLIST'S BEST NON-FICTION BOOKS FOR 2020 AND EVENING STANDARD'S BEST BOOKS TO LOOK FORWARD TO IN 2020*


    Praise for What Have I Done?

    'A raw, honest, important book'
    Caitlin Moran

    'A humbingly honest and human war report from the front lines of mothering psychosis and recovery; there is no other book like it, and it is so desperately needed'
    Giovanna Fletcher

    'This book will give women and their families confidence that the brain and body will heal. It will encourage other women to speak out'
    Dr Jessica Heron, CEO of Action on Postpartum Psychosis

    'An amazing read. A comfort to women recovering who read this and realise that all their crazy mad thoughts were the illness; and not themselves'
    Fiona Telford, postpartum psychosis survivor

  • Buy the book

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