Louis Theroux will soon be back with a new documentary – Mothers On The Edge - focused on postpartum mental illness.
The seasoned documentary maker has gained a legion of fans over the years with his documentaries and now he will be exploring a topic that is still very much a taboo – postpartum psychosis.
While the condition is not as widely discussed as postpartum depression – which is far more common – it affects around one in 1,000 births.
As it can be a dangerous mix of depression, mania and psychosis, it’s important mums are aware of what it means and how to spot it.
What can you expect from Louis Theroux: Mothers On The Edge?
To make the film, the documentary presenter spent time at two specialist psychiatric units that support mothers with mental illness to find out more about the condition.
Explaining why he decided to investigate this particular topic, he admitted that he hadn’t heard about it until someone on his team mentioned it to him.
He told Stylist magazine: ‘I’d heard of postnatal depression before, but this was a new one for me. It affects about one in every 500 new mums, and symptoms include visual and auditory hallucinations, as well as profoundly irrational and disordered thoughts. It seemed to me to be a story we could do justice to.’
Ultimately, he wants to raise awareness about the mental health issues mothers can experience after giving birth, and put a stop to the romanticising of motherhood as a time when mums should be blissfully happy.
‘The sad fact is, for many mums, their experience of having a baby is traumatic and they don’t experience Hallmark Card feelings of love’, he said.
‘The women we featured in this film took a huge leap of faith in opening up and speaking to me. They bared a great deal of their souls and risked the judgement of less understanding elements of society.
‘Their bravery and candour is awe inspiring, and it was a privilege to be invited into their families during a most vulnerable period in their lives. I hope this film will go some way to helping normalise postpartum mental illness and stimulate a discussion on how we can best care for mothers at the time they need it the most.’
When will Louis Theroux: Mothers On The Edge air?
Louis Theroux: Mothers on the Edge will air on BBC2 in May 2019, but a set date and time is yet to be announced.