International Women’s Day 2024: Inspiring Inclusion for New Mums

by team March 8, 2024

International Women’s Day marks an occasion for collective global activism as we celebrate the fight towards a gender equal world. The campaign theme for IWD 2024 is Inspire Inclusion. Today the world pauses to reflect on the experiences of women everywhere, and this year, Mumie want to continue raising our voices in encouraging the discussion of postnatal journeys.

Often we find that the mother’s story after giving birth goes missing in the narrative. It’s important we raise awareness of postnatal experiences and work together to ensure that new mums feel heard, understood, included and valued, today and every day.

Understanding maternal mental health

Although as a society we are starting to talk more openly about mental health, there is still a lot more work to be done in normalising the conversation, and this includes discussion of perinatal mental illness, which affects up to 27% of new and expectant mums.

It’s very natural to experience a range of emotions during pregnancy and after giving birth. After all, this is a huge life event. But when this starts to impact day to day life, it’s time to seek help and advice from your GP or health visitor. There is already a reasonable level of awareness of postnatal depression, but it’s well recognised that many women go undiagnosed. Although the ‘baby blues’ is considered normal in the first two weeks after giving birth, when feelings of sadness, low mood and lack of energy persist, it is important to talk to someone. Often women do not realise they have postnatal depression, or they may not want to speak up about these issues, for fear of judgement. As a society we need to ensure mums feel confident in raising these issues and looking after their mental health after giving birth.

There are other postnatal mental health issues that are not as often discussed, and it’s important to raise awareness. These include postnatal anxiety, which involves feelings of unease, worry or fear, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), which involves obsessive and compulsive symptoms, as well as difficult intrusive thoughts that affect daily life, and postnatal PTSD, also known as birth trauma, which develops because of traumatic events during childbirth. It can be difficult to unpick what might be happening, which is why the Mumie app includes a symptom checker to help explore and understand why you might be feeling the way you are, and guide you to the right help.

Remember that there is support available. As a new mum it is not your fault you feel this way, and it does not mean you are a ‘bad mother’. Being open and honest if you are struggling is the bravest thing you can do for yourself and your baby.

Let’s keep talking about perinatal mental health as often as we can, to increase societal awareness and normalise mum mental health. Find out more in our blog on maternal mental health.

Breastfeeding in public

Firstly, if you are breastfeeding your baby, you should do so wherever you feel most comfortable. If that means you’d rather breastfeed your baby in private, with no one else around, that is totally acceptable.

As you start getting more confident, you may feel open to breastfeeding in front of other people, in public spaces. There is a lot more inclusion and acceptance of breastfeeding in public such as in cafés, shopping centres and on public transport, but there is still more work to be done. NHS guidance encourages breastfeeding women to:

  • Know your rights. It’s illegal for anyone to ask a breastfeeding woman to leave a public space.
  • Plan ahead. Have a think about where you will feel most comfortable breastfeeding when you are out. This is something you can discuss at a local breastfeeding group, or chat to your midwife or heath visitor about.
  • Consider your clothes and bra. This depends on what you feel most comfortable in, and whether you prefer loose or stretchy tops. You can also consider wearing a breastfeeding bra (we love Cake Maternity – get 15% off selected collections with code MUMIEH15) or a baby sling which allows you to breastfeed while baby is in the sling. We’ve tried the Ergobaby Omni 360 sling which once you crack it, makes breastfeeding on the go a breeze.
  • Take someone with you. If you’d rather not be alone when you go out, bring someone with you, like a friend with an older baby who knows where to go, or your partner or mum.
  • Avoid public toilets. Do not let anyone make you feel like you have to go into public loos to feed your baby.

Breastfeeding is a beautiful, natural process and no woman should be made to feel ashamed or discriminated against when feeding their baby in public.

Breastfeeding and going back to work

Although some women may have a longer maternity leave, others may return to work. This is a topic that needs to be more openly discussed, as it is often believed that returning to employment means you have to stop breastfeeding. In fact, return to work is often cited as the most common reason a mother will end her breastfeeding journey prematurely. However this needn’t be the case; there are lots of options.

Whilst some women may arrange childcare close to work so that they can breastfeed during breaks, or before and after work, others may express breast milk by hand or using a pump so that someone else can feed their baby while they are at work. We recommend the Elvie wearable breast pump for collecting on the go or for a more traditional pump we have found the Medela Swing Maxi Double comfortable and efficient to minimise your pumping time!

However, employers do have certain legal obligations to breastfeeding mothers. You should give your employer written notification that you are breastfeeding. They must then conduct a risk assessment, and by law they must provide suitable facilities where you can rest. It is good practice for employers to provide a private, healthy and safe environment for you to express and store milk. This should be a clean, warm, private room, not the toilet. Some employers have a breastfeeding policy, and this can include provisions such as a break allowance to express milk, a secure and clean fridge for storage, and flexible working hours.

Get in touch with your HR department and discuss your options early, and have a read of our blog on making breastfeeding at work, work. This is an important conversation for new mums to have, and you should always feel comfortable, included and supported by your employer, and in no way at a disadvantage. You should not feel you have to stop breastfeeding just because you are returning to work.

‘Mum shaming’ and ‘bounce-back’ culture

Social media platforms such as Instagram have given way to the concept of ‘idealised motherhood’ or ‘picture-perfect motherhood.’ This can be dangerous for new mums, with research finding that nearly two-thirds of mums surveyed agree they have driven themselves to exhaustion with the pressure to be ‘supermum’, and one in five saying the plight has affected their mental health.

Comparing yourself to other mothers and trying to meet unrealistic standards can cause feelings of guilt and high levels of stress. Fear of judgement and others seeing imperfections, and not prioritizing guilt-free downtime, are all a result of pressure to be ‘supermum’.

The modern mother is not only expected to ‘naturally’ excel at parenting, but to also look great while doing so. ‘Bounce-back’ culture puts unnecessary pressure on mums to ‘get back in shape’ and return to ‘pre-baby bodies’ as soon as possible – once the baby is born, the media messaging is not to rest and recover, but to snap back into the bodies and behaviours you had before getting pregnant. This is a dangerous narrative, and society’s treatment of the modern mother has to change. ‘Mum shaming’ is not acceptable in today’s world – there must be understanding, inclusion and compassion for mums whose bodies and minds have been through so much, and who are simply trying their best for their new baby each and every day.

To mums – be kind to yourself. You are doing your very best, and it’s okay to remind others of that if you feel anyone is pressuring you to ‘bounce back’. Be honest about how you are feeling, look after yourself and love who you are now, with your precious new baby that you couldn’t have brought into the world without such a strong body and mind.

Let’s keep the conversation going

There is empowerment in not only inspiring others to understand the experience of a new mum, but also in seeing women themselves feeling inspired to be included, and taking control of their own relevance and sense of belonging.

Let’s raise awareness of mums’ lives after they welcome their baby into the world, so we can keep the conversation moving, open up understanding of the range of postnatal experiences, and inspire the inclusion that all new mothers deserve.

Karen McCusker is a Copywriter from Ireland, with a passion for creating meaningful connections with others through language. Her goal is to amplify women’s voices and experiences through her writing. She describes herself as a storyteller at heart, and the ultimate “Swiftie”

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Privacy Policy

Updated: 18th May 2023 This privacy policy explains how Mumie ("we" or "us") collects, uses, and shares information about you when you access or use our website or web application ("App")  collectively our "Services".  Mumie is committed to complying with data protection and privacy law. We take your privacy seriously and are committed to protecting your personal information. Please read this policy carefully to understand our practices regarding your personal data.

Information We Collect

We may collect the following types of information when you use our Services:
  • Personal Information: We may collect personal information, such as your name, email address, baby's date of birth and contact information when you create an account.
  • Health Information: We may collect health information such as your demographics and aspects of your medical history to provide you with personalised health recommendations and to help you track your progress
  • Device Information: We may collect information about the device you use to access the App, including the type of device, its operating system, and other technical information.
  • Usage Information: We may collect information about how you use the App, including your interactions with forms, features and content available through the App.
  • Website usage: Website users do not create accounts, however, may still be subject to certain passive data collection. Such passive data collection may include cookies (please refer to separate Cookie Policy), IP address information, location information, and certain browser data, such as history and/or session information.
Mumie is intended to be used by women who have recently given birth. It is not intended to be used by children.

How We Use Your Information

We may use the information we collect for the following purposes:
  1. To Provide Services: We use the information to provide you with the services offered by the App, including personalised health recommendations, and to improve the quality of those services.
  2. To Communicate: We may use your contact information to communicate with you about our Services, including updates, promotions, and other news.
  3. To Improve the App: We use the information to understand how users interact with the App and to improve its design, content and functionality.
  4. To Comply with Legal Obligations: We may use your information to comply with legal obligations, such as responding to court orders or complying with applicable laws.
We will store this information within our App so that you can have access to it for as long as you are our registered user. We may also use it for statistical and research purposes, but only in an aggregated and anonymised format (i.e., in a format that does not allow us to identify who this information relates to). The information you provide will be processed on one or more of the following lawful bases:
  • The consent you provide to us at the point of collection of your personal information, including explicit consent for processing special personal data to include health data
  • The performance of the contract we have with you
  • The compliance of a legal obligation to which we are subject
  • The performance of scientific research, preparation of statistics or public health activities
  • The legitimate interests of Mumie, you or a third party, where not overridden by your interests, fundamental rights or freedoms

How We Share Your Information

We may share your information with the following types of entities:
  1. Service Providers: We may share your information with service providers that help us operate the App or provide the services offered through the App.
  2. Business Partners: We may share your information with business partners, such as insurers or healthcare providers, to provide you with more personalised health recommendations.
  3. Legal Authorities: We may share your information with legal authorities, such as law enforcement agencies or courts, to comply with legal obligations or in response to a legal request.
We may share your information with other parties with your consent. Your information will not be transferred out of the UK.

Third-party links

The App and/or website may include links to third-party websites, plug-ins, and applications. Clicking on those links or enabling those connections may allow third parties to collect or share data about you. We do not control these third-party websites and are not responsible for their privacy notices and practices. When you leave the Web App or Website, we encourage you to read the privacy policy of every website or app you visit. In the event of acquisition of Mumie, your data may be shared with the new owners.


We may use your contact details to provide you with information about our work, events, services and/or activities which we consider may be of interest to you. Where we do this via email, SMS, or telephone, we will not do so without your prior consent. You are free to opt out from receiving marketing communications by following the "unsubscribe" link in our email, or by contacting us directly. We will get your express opt-in consent before we share your personal data with any third party for marketing purposes.

Security of Your Information

We have put in place appropriate security measures to prevent your personal data from being accidentally lost, used, or accessed in an unauthorised way, altered, or disclosed. Your data will be stored on a secure web server, with the app hosted on a trusted host provider with regular security update enhancements. Your personal data can only be accessed by those within Mumie who have a genuine need to know. They will only process your personal data on our instruction, and they are subject to a duty of confidentiality. We have put in place procedures to deal with any suspected personal data breach and will notify you and any applicable regulator of a breach where we are legally required to do so. While we will use all reasonable efforts to safeguard your personal data, you acknowledge that the use of the internet is not entirely secure and for this reason, we cannot guarantee the security or integrity of any personal data that are transferred via the internet. We can not be held responsible for unauthorised access or use of your information that is beyond our control.

Data retention

We will only retain your personal data for as long as reasonably necessary to fulfil the purposes we collected it for. We may retain your personal data for a longer period in the event of a complaint or if we reasonably believe there is a prospect of litigation in respect to our relationship with you. Typically, we will not keep your personal data for longer than 5 years after you have closed your account on our App or stopped using it, after which point personal data will be destroyed. We may anonymise your personal data (so that it can no longer be associated with you) for research or statistical purposes, in which case we may use this information indefinitely without further notice to you.

Your Rights

You have the right to access and control your personal information, including the right to be informed about what data we hold, the right to access this data, the right to rectify inaccurate data, the right to erase your data, the right to restrict or object to your information being used, and the right to move your data to another business. If you have any questions about your rights or would like to exercise your rights, please contact us using the information provided at the end of this policy. When signing up to our app you will be asked to provide your consent to share your information. You have the right to withdraw this consent at any time and may do so by contacting us. You have the right to make a complaint at any time to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), the UK supervisory authority for data protection issues ( We would, however, appreciate the chance to deal with your concerns before you approach the ICO so please contact us in the first instance.

Changes to This Policy

We may update this privacy policy from time to time.  If we make changes, we will notify you by revising the date at the top of the policy and, in some cases, we may provide you with additional notice (such as adding a statement to our website homepage or sending you a notification). We encourage you to review the Privacy Policy whenever you access the Services or otherwise interact with us to stay informed about our information practices and the choices available to you. Your continued use of our services after the effective date of the updated policy will constitute your acceptance of the revised policy.

Contact Us

The Party responsible for the processing of your personal data is Mama Health Ltd. The Data Protection Officer (DPO) is Dr Laura Davies. The Data Protection Officer may be contacted using the contact us page on the website. If you have any questions or concerns about our privacy policy, please contact us using the contact page on our website or by emailing us at
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