A niche of my practice is dedicated helping women and couples with the unique issues that pregnancy and motherhood can bring up. Pregnancy and motherhood is supposed to be a joyous time but for some women it brings up feelings of fear, loss, anxiety, and doubt. For example:
- If your mom was absent physically or emotionally as you were growing up due to mental illness, jail, alcohol or drug abuse.
- A mother that was abusive or did not protect you from abuse.
- Sexual abuse survivors often feel out of control or anxious during pregnancy and lactation due to their changing body and the potential of medical intrusion.
- Women who have lost their moms at a young age or lack a good support system.
- Having a traumatic birth or a baby with health problems (NICU, preemie, etc.) brings up feelings of anxiety or difficulty bonding.
- Losing a baby during pregnancy or in the first few months of life.
- Having mood problems such as depression, trauma or anxiety that extend beyond the few weeks of normal “baby blues.”
- Experiencing difficulty in your relationship with your partner as you transition from a couple to co-parents.
In these situations and similar situations women feel anxious about their ability to mother, memories of abuse can re-surface, or the grief of losing your mom can come back once you begin to mother. Some women, due to a history of abuse or difficulty with their own parents, aren’t even sure if they want to have babies of their own.
These feelings are normal and with proper help most women can get relief. Addressing these feelings can allow you to better bond with your baby or child, feel more comfortable during pregnancy and labor, and reduce chances of postpartum depression, major depressive symptoms, or trauma.
It’s my belief that happier moms = happier babies = happier families = happier communities. So taking care of yourself is really a very self-less thing to do! I offer a $10 new family discount for pregnant moms and families with children under the age of two. Please also see my blog as I often write about this topic.
*For my clients without kids-please know I work with people without kids and honor the choice of an individual to choose whether or not to become a parent! Being child free by choice is an important right. On the other hand, being child free due to fertility problems can bring people to counseling for a different set of issues. I honor my clients and their individual situations.