Making Sense of Motherhood

Sometimes the journey to motherhood can feel isolating, overwhelming and
unfamiliar, with feelings of anxiety, sadness and guilt all too common.

Making Sense of Motherhood LogoWhat is Making SENSE of Motherhood (MSOM)?

MSOM is a program designed to help women with babies (who are not yet crawling) to develop confidence in their abilities as a new mum and to feel supported in getting to know their baby. It provides an opportunity for women to share thoughts and feelings about adjusting to motherhood, and to explore coping strategies with others going through similar experiences.

Mother and Baby Together

An important and special aspect of MSOM is that babies and mothers participate in the group together. This provides a chance for them to get to know each other in a supportive environment.

What’s involved?

The MSOM program covers topics, such as:

  • playing with and understanding how babies communicate;
  • relationship issues;
  • baby massage;
  • early brain development;
  • parenting techniques; and
  • strategies for self-care and nurturing are explored.

MSOM is divided into 2 parts; the first focusing on mother and baby attachment, the second on the self-care and nurture of the mother.

What about Dad’s?

Partners are not forgotten with an information session on what mum’s are experiencing. This is delivered by a father who has been there. A baby massage session just for dad’s is also offered.

Why Choose MSOM?

The program offers women the chance to talk and find support from others who are also trying to make sense of motherhood. MSOM is conducted in a group setting and is facilitated by trained women who understand the sorts of challenges faced by new mums, with one of the facilitators having a lived experience of post-natal depression and anxiety. During the program participants are engaged in activities that promote self-nurturing and are encouraged to feel value and importance in their role as a mother. Participants have the chance to share parenting ideas, learn some coping strategies, form friendships and learn about child development and care.

The Recovery Journey

MSOM has been developed as a self-help recovery model and is not a therapy-based program. Women with a desire to become empowered in their journey through early motherhood and wanting to enhance their relationship with their baby are encouraged and supported to take part in the program.

Is this program right for me?

MSOM is for women who are experiencing mild to moderate symptoms of postnatal depression and anxiety and are:

  • Interested in making sense of who they are as a mother;
  • Wanting to develop an understanding of their babies’ cues, language and learning;
  • Interested in learning about their babies as individuals; and
  • Can commit to attending the group weekly for 10 weeks and then every fortnight for the following 10 weeks.


MSOM is free and is delivered at the WOMEN’S Healthworks centre located at Suite 6, Joondalup Lotteries House, 70 Davidson Tce, Joondalup.

How do I join?

MSOM is delivered 4 times per year and each participant is interviewed by a child health nurse to see if this group is suitable for their needs. If you would like to join an MSOM group please contact:



“Once I joined the group I felt it was ok to find being a mother difficult because all the women in my group were finding it a struggle too. I felt less lonely knowing I wasn’t the only one”.

“I am a more confident mother after attending the group. In the company of other women I have learned to be gentle with myself and to understand that I need to learn how to do this new job, some women just don’t feel equipped to do it at the start – and that my baby needed my help to learn too. I soon realised all the women in my group needed help learning the tools for the job, we were all good mothers…we just needed help to feel that way”.

MSOM is funded through the WA Perinatal Mental Health Unit.

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Additional Support Services

Following the joining of WOMEN’s Healthworks with Womens Health and Family Services Northbridge, additional programs and services are now available. For more information, visit the Parent Support page on the WHFS website.