Bringing a new child into the world can already be an anxiety-ridden experience, but add in a pandemic, and you’ve reached a whole new level of difficulty. For the U.K.’s Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week, which beings tomorrow, Kate Middleton hopped on Zoom with midwives, health visitors, parents, and leading experts to talk about the impact that the coronavirus crisis has had on families and healthcare workers, per Entertainment Tonight.
During her Zoom call rounds, the Duchess of Cambridge also talked to a new mom and dad in the U.K. after they welcomed their son. The mom, who was still in her hospital bed, spoke with the duchess, who expressed her best wishes to the couple. “Very nice to meet you,” Kate said, laughing, as she spoke to the new parents in their hospital room. “This is definitely a first, I think. Well, firstly, huge congratulations. Is it a little boy or a little girl?”
The camera panned over to the newborn, and Kate said, “He’s so sweet. Aww, congratulations.”
During the video, Kate also spoke to healthcare experts and providers what their main concerns are during this pandemic.
“Social isolation” was among the biggest worries from healthcare professionals, who said that many new parents parents aren’t able to see their family members leading up to or after the birth.
“It creates anxiety because we all know how important those key relationships are in those early days,” one woman said.
Kate has long been an advocate for the importance of mental health after becoming a new parent. At a 2017 event for Best Beginnings, a charity partner of the royal mental health charity, Heads Together, she spoke about how quickly things shift when it comes to mental health after giving birth.
“Nothing can really prepare you for you the sheer overwhelming experience of what it means to become a mother. It is full of complex emotions of joy, exhaustion, love, and worry, all mixed together,” she previously said at the launch of Best Beginnings. “Your fundamental identity changes overnight. You go from thinking of yourself as primarily an individual, to suddenly being a mother, first and foremost.”
Like the rest of us, Kate and Prince William have become well acquainted with Zoom in recent weeks. They have also talked with teachers and students who are adjusting to remote learning right now.
Self-isolation and social distancing can pose huge challenges to our mental health—in recent weeks The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been in regular contact with organizations and patronages to understand the issues they are facing during this difficult time,” they wrote on the Kensington Palace Instagram account in March.