Pre and postnatal depression
support services

0121 301 5990
Acacia Family Support - Ante and postnatal depression support services

Your Stories

Kate's Story
Rachel's Story
Tanya's Story
Young Parents' Stories
Hope and the Black Balloon
Joshna's Story
Shabina's Story
Donna's Story
Donna's Update
Roisheen's Story


  • After I relatively easy birth pregnancy and straight forward planned c section I was really enjoying the first month of my daughter’s life. However a difficult month then followed with her being hospitalised due to severe bronchiolitis and pneumonia. I had been surviving on adrenaline and very little sleep so it wasn’t a surprise to my family when I ‘fell off the edge’ as it were. My health visitor first mentioned Acacia and self referring myself and my husband. I was a bit nervous but once I’d picked up the phone they put me at ease.

    In between the initial referral and receiving a comprehensive telephone assessment my mood had gone downhill and I was prescribed medication from my GP. I found the information and advice from the telephone call very useful to start the process of getting myself better. I was offered a 1:1 and thought to myself that I might just need a one off and then I’d be fine. Fast forward to a couple of weeks later and I walked into the hall at Northfield Baptist church. I needn’t have worried because I was welcomed and made to feel at home straight away. My 1:1 session was absolutely invaluable as allowed me the space and opportunity to process all that had happened. I was listened to without judgement or negativity and felt relieved to be able to get some things off my chest that I couldn’t really discuss with people close to me. I had a few more 1:1’s followed by an 8 week block of group work. The combination of 1:1s and then group work was great as by the time I was in a group I had grown in confidence and my mood was a lot better. It was reassuring to know other mums were in the same boat. I loved that my children were looked after so brilliantly to enable me to have some child-free time. I learnt new things about myself each week and tools for helping me cope and move forward.

    I honestly don’t know what my maternity leave would have looked like without Acacia and I am so grateful for all they did for me and continue to do for other mums. I have learnt that I don’t need to be ashamed of suffering with post natal depression and anxiety as there are lots of mums suffering in silence. I would encourage any mum in this situation to speak to Acacia. My husband also received a couple of telephone consultations for his anxiety and that was immensely helpful too. My wider family have been amazed at the level of care I have received and how quickly I was able to receive it.

    Thank you!
  • To all the wonderful people I have met at Acacia  It’s taken a few days to know what I wanted to say! It’s been very emotional and triggering leaving Acacia’s services and I’ve struggled to find the words. 

    After suffering from depression and anxiety most of my life following a traumatic incident, I was prepared for PND after my first child. It didn’t come so I wasn’t expecting it after my second.  It hit me like a ton of bricks and threw me off balance. I hadn’t felt that low for a long time. I felt scared.  A friend recommended Acacia after using them herself. I was unsure but felt I had to try. I was so nervous going in but was immediately put at ease with a smile and a cuppa.  It was wonderful being able to put my baby in the creche and have time to talk about how I felt.  I had befriending with Liz and she was so kind. It was a comfort to know I would be able to have this every week. 

    My husband started to struggle with his mental health because of the effect I was having on the family. He used the Acacia Dads service reluctantly, but quickly benefited and after a few sessions with Geoff and Steve felt stronger to deal with the pressures he was under.  Jayne and Liz you both encouraged me to do the Group CBT course but I didn’t want to. You were patient and understanding. Eventually I did it and it was the best thing. Kerry was wonderful and calming. It was lovely and helpful to hear other mums saying they felt the same as me.  I’ve never known anything like Acacia. The support was amazing and varied. From practical support like the creche on a Thursday and home help, treat things like a massage and gifts to the door, to much needed counselling/befriending and CBT. Such simple ideas but ones you don’t find often.    I was made to feel valued and important in my own right.  Hard as it is to leave I am more confident that I can handle things in a more positive way and can be a better parent.

    It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say Acacia saved my life and my family. 
    I really hope that one day I can give back and become a befriender, creche worker or drinks maker myself. It is something I would be proud to be part of. 


    Before I came to Acacia services I couldn’t get out of bed.  I was pregnant and feeling low.  My curtains would hardly open.  I broke down uncontrollably crying to my doctor.  I thought every area in my life was a failure at that point.  I thought I had let everybody down and that I was an unfit mother.  I didn’t want to call out for help as I was scared that a professional would say you are an unfit mum, so I kept it in for so long.  If I had known Acacia would make me feel how I do right now, I would have leapt for the help and also knowing that many people around the country don’t have these services available to them, helped to persuade me initially to receive the support when I was so hesitant.   Thanks Acacia!  You will never know how much you rescued me.  I definitely feel me again.
  • It seems unrealistic to say that after just a few weeks of attending sessions at acacia, my wife would be dramatically different. But that is exactly what’s happened.
    The thinking techniques and perspectives on situations introduced through the befriending and group sessions have brought a clarity to my wife’s thinking that has transformed her and given her a new lease of life. Progress has been quick, not always upwards and still with a way to go, but the difference in her is amazing. There’s a happiness in her that hasn’t been there for a while.
    And I know it’s not just my wife that’s had such a good experience because she was given the recommendation by a friend who has had a hugely positive experience. So, even though we may not be friends as you read this, please take my recommendation and contact acacia. They’ve brought light and hope to our family and I’m sure they can for yours too. I can’t thank them enough.
  • Acacia family support helped me through one of the darkest and most difficult times in my life. When I was around 7 months pregnant with our third child I started to feel really low and really anxious. I felt like there was a dark cloud over me, almost a physical feeling of being trapped in fog and not able to see through. I was overthinking absolutely everything, feeling anxious about everything and I started to shut myself away. It got to a point where I couldn’t get out of bed and I felt like I just wanted to disappear. I felt so alone, so worthless and terribly guilty that I wasn't enjoying what should have been an exciting and happy time. 

    My husband was so worried about me and knew I needed help, he prompted me to make an appointment to get some support. I was reluctant but I knew he was right and we went together to see my doctor. The doctor was amazing and listened as I sobbed about how I was feeling and how I had completely lost myself in this depression. I explained how much I loved my children and the new baby to come, but how thoughts of ending my life kept creeping in (even though I would never act on them.)  The doctor suggested Acacia and from then onwards things started to change.

    The befriending service, helping hands at home and later (when my little boy was born) the CBT group work, all helped massively with my recovery. I was made to feel so welcome, I was able to chat with the most compassionate people who understood what I was feeling and reassured me I was poorly but I would get better, there was light at the end of the tunnel. My recovery didn’t happen overnight, but with the support from Acacia, my doctor, family and friends I slowly started to feel like me again. 

    Since then I’ve had another little boy, that pregnancy and since his birth haven’t been completely smooth sailing and there have been periods where anxiety and depression has started creeping in again, but this time I am well prepared I have support in place that I could access, a supportive health visitor and I am safe in the knowledge I can self refer to Acacia if I needed support.

If you live in Birmingham and need help?

Need Help? If you need help or support or have any questions please call.
0121 301 5990
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If you live outside of Birmingham and need help?

View the website If you need help or support please visit the Hearts and Minds website.