Mums Like Us is a network for disabled mothers. It was founded in 2017 by Sally Darby:
"After having my first daughter in 2013, I scoured the internet for the experiences of mums like me. I found a huge number of brilliant mums both online and personally whose help and support in the whole mothering business was truly invaluable. But where, I wondered, were the other mums who were doing this while living with disability? I couldn't be the only one. Eventually, in 2017, I found myself in a session at the Women of the World festival at London's Southbank, on disability. Two of the disabled women on the panel talked about their children. Here they are, I thought. These are the women who will know where I can find some support, some community. So I asked the question and was met with a surprising response. It seemed that there was no space online for disabled mothers to share experiences, seek support and advice from each other and to be positive about doing this! I knew I wasn't not the only one. There were loads of disabled mums out there. They were parenting bloody well, whilst dealing with and living with some extra challenges. Those mums might feel like me. They might want a place to talk with Mums Like Us. And so it began.
I was completely able bodied for 26 years before I became seriously visually impaired overnight. Three years later, I was diagnosed with MS and have subsequently experienced mobility problems. Coming to terms with the changes this brought to my life was not easy. I have often heard people call me "stoic" and "positive," but in truth it was very hard. Having kids had, however, always been part of my life plans. My husband and I decided to go ahead and try to have children. It was not a decision we took lightly and there were many factors to be considered. I was aware, even then of the criticism I might face. I still believe there is much judgement and ignorance regarding the ability of disabled people to parent. The years since have thrown me all the challenges you'd expect for any mum. My kids are my world and I parent them to the very best of my ability, as we all do. Sometimes it's hard, but mostly it's awesome. The world is full of mums doing it in very different circumstances. Single, married, gay, straight, old, young. We are all just mums doing our best.
Mums Like Us provides a supportive community for disabled mums, mums to be and those considering being mums. This is a space we can say, "this is shit," but also, "this is amazing," without fear of judgement. This is a place we can share resources, ideas and support for each other.
Our wider aim is to generate a conversation. Mums Like Us is amazing. It is disabled mums supporting each other. But I sometimes think the conversation needs to extend beyond that group. High street retailers should be selling prams with wheel chair adapters, soft plays should be accessible, you shouldn’t have to crowd fund a cot you can put your baby in if you have a disability that prevents you from doing it with a ‘normal’ cot. People shouldn’t be asked if their kids are theirs, or patted and congratulated for leaving the house (true stories!) The message needs to get out there that disabled people do have sex, do procreate, do give birth, do have brilliant kids and bring them up like the absolute superstars they are. I am not suggesting for one minute that the general population is ableist or ignorant. But I do think this conversation is pretty muted. I’d like to turn up the volume."