FAQs about the birth trauma support workshops
What happens at these workshops?
There is the opportunity to share your story of trauma (though it's certainly not compulsory!) and to hear of others' stories which, in itself, can be a very validating and somewhat healing process. You will learn that you are not alone in your experiences and you will hear what others do/have done to help them to cope and move forward positively.
Do I Have to speak?
We'll do an initial 'round' to introduce ourselves, but apart from that, no, you are not expected to speak unless you want to. The idea of these group sessions is, in part, to develop a sense of community, including a feeling/experience of trust, compassion and sharing. It's therefore our hope that people who attend will feel comfortable to share their stories and thoughts if they wish to be heard. But some may gain just as much value and insight through simply listening, which is fine.
CAN I BRING SOMEONE WITH ME?
Absolutely. Perhaps your partner or mother or sister or friend have some of their own trauma surrounding your birth that they would like to work through. They are welcome to attend as well. Or maybe you just want a support person there with you to make you feel more at ease? That's fine too.
could it be traumatising for me to hear others' stories of birth trauma?
Yes, it may be, especially if your trauma is still quite new and raw. It is important that you gauge whether or not you are feeling ready and able to be confronted with others' stories of trauma. There may well be very violent and/or saddening stories shared. If you think that hearing others' stories will be triggering for you, please consider contacting us about getting some one-to-one support before attending these sorts of group sessions. If you have any concerns, doubts or queries regarding your fears of being triggered in a group situation, please contact us to discuss this, rather than simply hoping that you will be okay.
MY birth trauma took place years ago. Can i still come?
Yes. Unprocessed trauma can have a negative impact which lasts a lifetime. No matter how long ago your experience of birth trauma took place, there is always hope of some healing. Attending this workshop may be the most important step in your healing journey.
Can I bring my baby along?
Babies can be quite a distraction, bless them, especially the mobile ones. And at a workshop like this, where people are sharing some really difficult, sensitive experiences, we prefer to keep distractions to a minimum. We've also noticed that babies pick up on their mother's emotional state and can become distressed when their mother is feeling a lot of sadness. However, we also want to ensure that we support the needs of new babes and their mums. If you would be more comfortable bringing your baby along, that is fine. And if your baby is a new, new baby, we absolutely encourage you to bring them along - we'll do all we can to support you and your little one during the workshop. We do ask, though, that if your baby becomes overly distressed or is too distracting, that you respect the needs of others at the workshop and take your baby home. If you want to discuss this further, please contact Carla.
do men sometimes attend these workshops?
Yes. We are very encouraging of men attending. Birth trauma can take an incredible toll on the support people who were helpless witnesses. These workshops are designed to support the needs of anyone affected by birth trauma who wishes to find some guidance and healing.
i'm feeling very fragile. What if I get upset?
Grief and tears are a natural part of working through your trauma. All of those at the workshop understand how hard it is to share and hear traumatic, difficult or sad stories of birth. It's okay to be upset, there'll be tissues and a hug for you. If you think that being in a group situation may feel too confronting for you just now, you might be best to seek some one-to-one support. Click here for one-to-one support options.
MY birth wasn't nearly as bad as others have had. can i still come?
Birth trauma comes in all shapes and sizes. No-one can say that your birth was or wasn't traumatic, except you. What was an incredibly positive birth experience for one person, may be a hugely traumatising experience for another. At these workshops we will acknowledge and validate your feelings around your birth, no matter what your experience involved. All trauma deserves to be heard and healed.