My experience with a Reporter

Yesterday after dropping thunderpants off at school and running a few errands, I decided to go into Morrisons and have a late breakfast.

I purchased an Evening Times and opened it to find an article talking with “baby blues” in the title(was more to the title as well). Even before reading it, I knew what the mistake was and my anger stated to rise.

Although the article was highlighting the new mother and baby unit which was being opened and quoted the wonderful consultant, Roch Cantwell which I’ve had the pleasure of meeting many times, the title was all wrong.

I know this because I was told after having my daughter that it was “Just the baby blues” when in fact I had started my journey through Post Natal Depression. Speaking about mothers who would need to be in the unit or to attend as an out patient, and the help that is provided there, instead of using words like Post Natal depression, psychosis,anxiety Prenatal Depression , they used “Baby Blues”. it is absolutely and utterly damaging not to mention offensive to many!

So I did what I normally do, and got angry. I wrote an email whilst eating my breakfast explaining that using those words to describe something far from the “baby blues”, is invalidating feelings and could delay a persons recovery. People have died due to not being taken seriously! How dare they assume or not carry out any research?!

I got a reply right away and it was explained to me that although the article was not about that as such, it was basically an identifiable word amongst the general public and one which would be understood…. Que the blood boiling and many swear words going round my head. It wasn’t that the content was offensive although they could have covered things more in depth etc, what got me angry was the unprofessionalism, adding to the on going stigmas relating to Perinatal Mental Health!!! Jeesh !!!! (By questioning the titles unprofessionalism and the response back was that reporters have no control over the headline)

I was asked by the reporter to meet this week, advising today or Friday and was told that Thursday would be better. I was quite pleased that the paper wanted to hear the bigger story and I started gathering info and started seeing my stance as an activist but one who was going to use fact over passion )well you know what I mean) I was going to be professional!

So after dropping off thunderpants, I headed straight in to town and arriving early, ordered myself a tea and a beverage for the journalist. As time ticks by, I start panicking …. Did I say the right coffee shop, time and day? I was also feeling a bit sick as nerves and a urine infection had me up during the night. Not to mention being inthe pregnant with hyperemesis..

By 10:15am, I had checked my details through the exchange if emails and right enough, date, time and location were correct. I emailed the journalist and response that she’d had it in her head that it was tomorrow and that she had a lot on her plate.

I responded with the exchange of emails that we had yesterday but wasn’t prepared for the snippy response of “I can see that, people make mistakes,could we meet tomorrow”. Now, that just made me even more angry and I have yet to respond. I wouldn’t have minded if she had been apologetic, these things happen (although I hope that she doesn’t do that a lot to people), but to be so rude in her response after I drove all the way into town, paid my parking, bought us both a beverage and sat there waiting, and then contacting her to see where she was!

As I have taken a break from writing about or doing much in terms of PND, due to the start of my pregnancy being pretty rubbish and because I am still having CBT, I feel quite annoyed! I realise that I am in control of how I feel and can react in a way that I choose but why be so rude in responding?

Like I said, I haven’t responded and probably won’t take the time to do so but at least if I change my mind and do, I will be far more polite and dignified!

Update: As I was editing this, I received an email 1.5hrs after the original meet time to ask if I still had time, would I like to meet now? In the name of the wee man!!! Did she think that I would still be waiting in beanscene still?????

Update:the reporter is perplexed that I would question her professionalism… Really? Don’t believe I said that in this article. Made it clear that the article was ok despite missing out on stigmas in it etc, my issue is with the article title as well as not looking at ones diary when arranging appointments. Think we can lay this one to rest.

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2 thoughts on “My experience with a Reporter”

  1. I would have been furious in your position – the fact that she’s obviously been given a kick up the arse by her editor and reconsidered meeting you today says it all. Is the piece online? Could you respond to it in the “comments” box below? That way you can also be assured that it’ll be printed as you’d like it, rather than “her version’ of what you said.

    And FWIW, I totally agree with your response to the “baby blues” headline. It’s because it’s an “identifiable word” that PND isn’t treated with the seriousness it deserves.

    1. Thanks Cat. I’m furious and it didn’t have to be like this at all, on your recommendation I shall comment in their site! Thanks for taking the time to read:)

      I worry for the many women and men reading that article and not reading past the headline. It’s a shame as the article highlights the use of the mother and baby unit, which in itself is fantastic to know that the facility is there, but the title is just so off putting!

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