parent opinion

6 parents to follow on Instagram that are actually good for your mental health.

I often hear people (myself included) lament the loss of 'The Village'. 

You know... 'The Village'? 

The 'utopia' that existed 'back in the day' where you would raise your brood of babes right next door to your sister or your bestie and their litter of naked and wild cherubs.  

In 'The Village', brand new parents would feel supported. Of course, the inevitable crushing overwhelm of raising a tiny human would still hit. That’s when one of your tribal sisters or brothers would step in and explain that they, once, had been there too. Together you would laugh and cry as they offered advice and empathy. With tears in your eyes, you would thank them. They would pass you a leaf to blow your nose into and say, 'Hey, all good love. It takes a village.'

Because it bloody does!

While you're here, watch some of our favourite celebrities talk about parenting below. Post continues after video.

Video via Mamamia.

But, alas, we don’t have a village anymore. And this reality can make the parenting gig feel quite lonely indeed.   

So where do modern day caregivers turn for comfort? For advice? For solace? Their own parentals (sometimes, but those old buggers can be hard to pin down); their friends (again, potentially, but #workingmumanddadlife can make this a struggle).

No, modern day parents turn to their phones. 

Whilst there is still a massive amount of mum (and dad) accounts that curate perfection through their bento boxes brimming with organic goats' cheese and sauerkraut – they don’t dominate Instagram like they once did.

So, if your experience of parenting is more 'I love this life but sh*t it’s hard sometimes' - check out these Aussie (or Aussie-based) parents. These parents are talented, creative, smart, and hilarious. They are entrepreneurs, artists, comedians, and advocates.

Meet your top-notch village replacements...

Mel Watts (@melwatts).


She's all about:

  • Mental health.
  • Body positivity.
  • Being honest about the overwhelm of parenthood. 
  • Inspiring others by living with authenticity and a growth mindset.

Good for your mental health because:

  • She will make you 'snort laugh' loudly and frequently. 
  • She shares the challenges of raising kids from babyhood to teen years. 
  • She normalises mental health struggles by sharing her experiences. 
  • She promotes body positivity though her amazing clothing brand @olathelabel.

Maddison Connors (@yarli_creative).

She's all about:

  • Creating incredible Aboriginal art.
  • Collaborating with lady startups like @littlepartydress to create dresses that celebrate First Nations culture. 
  • Having open and honest conversations about how to be an ally. 
  • Sharing her love for her beautiful babies.
  • Ending period poverty in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia through Fierce Tidda Club.

Good for your mental health because:

  • She inspires her community to conquer their fears by confronting and overcoming limiting beliefs. 
  • She promotes gratitude and mindfulness in everyday life through her stories, posts and words of wisdom.

Revie Jane (@reviejane).


She's all about:

  • Practical ways to include positive psychology into your daily life – think journaling, meditation, and affirmation cards.
  • Sharing home workouts for all levels. 
  • Building a strong and loving relationship with yourself. 
  • Her lovely daughters and husband.

Good for your mental health because:

  • She is unashamedly obsessed with her daughters but also honest that being a mother can be A LOT! 
  • She openly discusses her mental health journey and shares practical advice and tips on the topic.
  • She will actually motivate you to move your body. She promotes movement for mental and physical health. 
  • She hosts an amazing podcast called Empowered With Revie which is both inspiring and informative. 

Listen to Mamamia's This Glorious Mess, a weekly look at parenting as it truly is: confusing, exhausting, inspiring, funny, and full of surprises. Post continues below.

Jarrad Duggan-Tierney (@the_real_dads_of_melbourne).

He's all about:

  • His gorgeous son, Reid, and husband Michael. 
  • His fur babies.
  • Sharing kitchen wins and fails.
  • Home renos. 

Good for your mental health because:

  • His heart is full of gratitude and so are his stories. 
  • He promotes kindness and will inspire you to do the same by walking his talk. 
  • Watching their gorgeous son, Reid, being raised with love and compassion by two wonderful men will remind you of the good in the world.

Steph Pase (@justanothermummyblog).


She's all about:

  • Easy and maintainable home organisation hacks with affordable storage (think Kmart and Ikea). 
  • The importance of fitness and routine to maintain good mental health.

Good for your mental health because:

  • She shares ideas and advice on how to ease the burden of the mental load with organisational hacks.  
  • She promotes kindness and inclusivity by sharing her experiences of growing up with her brother Adam who has special needs. 
  • She shares her daily healthy habits like healthy eating, exercise, and organisation as a way to manage anxiety.

Sean Szeps (@seanszeps).

He's all about:

  • Advocating for and celebrating the LGBTQIA community.
  • His adorable and wonderful twins. 
  • His love for family, life, and the wonder of the world.

Good for your mental health because: 

  • His reels will have you heaving with laughter. 
  • He consistently reminds his followers that it’s okay to find parenting equal parts wonderful and exhausting. 
  • His 'Sean Rant' stories will make you feel seen. 
  • He is joy personified.

These parents don’t attract thousands of followers by promoting perfection. Their villages follow them because they bravely share the gamut of emotions served right alongside the privilege of parenthood (and life in general). They’re sharing their truths about the challenges they’ve faced and advocating for a better world for their babies and ours.  

Social media is here to stay. And while there are undeniable correlations between the use of this medium and poor mental health, maybe we’re seeing a shift. With parents like this dominating The Gram in Australia - personally I reckon there’s hope for the new village after all. 

Feature Image: Instagram @seanszeps, @reviejane, @melwatts, @the_real_dads_of_melbourne, @justanothermummyblog, @yarli_creative.

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