How Does Therapy Work?
Your role in therapy is to explore what is on your mind and some of the thoughts that have been troubling you. It doesn't have to all fit together before you say it-just explore. My job is to help you explore.
In my experience 3 things happen as we do this exploring;
1. You will discover new things about yourself and your life that you may not have known before.
2. As we talk about the issues and feelings bothering you, your feelings will change
3. You will find new solutions or a more effective way of living and become more able to make conscious choices. By exploring threatening or troubling thoughts and feelings in a safe environment we get to look at these avoided thoughts and feelings and slow it down. In doing that they lose their power and we are then more able to understand where they came from. You have more information to develop a more complete understanding of yourself and your situation.
The process of therapy helps you put words to and name your internal experiences, thoughts and feelings. It makes all that is going on internally inside of us, external by naming it so we can see it better. I will help you with this process of taking what's internal and making it external so you can see it clearer. When you can see it clearly you can better understand yourself, your experiences, emotions and that which has been bothering you. You are then able to make the choices necessary to move forward.
Becoming a New Parent is Hard
Parenthood is a major transition. It means the change of many things as we once knew them. Although it can be a joyful and loving time, for many it can be filled with stress and anxiety. The distress a new parent experiences can be normal, talking to someone can help you make sense of your new thoughts, feelings and worries during this transition period in you and your family's life.
Although distress is a common and normal experience when becoming a new parent or adding a new baby to the family, 1 in 5 women will develop a more serious mental health concern called a PMAD (Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder)
1 in 10 dads gets postpartum depression, and up to 18% develop a clinically significant anxiety disorder such as generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder at some point during the pregnancy or the first year postpartum.
Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders have been identified in parents of every culture, age, income level and
ethnicity. 15-20% of women experience more serious symptoms during or after the birth of their baby.
Are you feeling sad or depressed?
Do you feel more irritable or angry with those around you?
Are you having difficulty bonding with your baby?
Do you feel anxious or panicky?
Are you having problems with eating or sleeping?
Are you having difficulty concentrating or making decisions?
Are you having upsetting thoughts that you can’t get out of your mind?
Do you feel as if you are “out of control” or “going crazy”?
Do you feel like you never should have become a mother?
Are you worried that you might hurt your baby or yourself?
Any of these symptoms, and many more, could indicate that you have a form of perinatal mood or anxiety disorder, such as postpartum depression. While many birth parents experience some mild mood changes during or after the birth of a child, 15 to 20% experience more significant symptoms of depression or anxiety. Please know that with informed care you can prevent a worsening of these symptoms and can fully recover. There is no reason to continue to suffer. Symptoms can appear any time during pregnancy and the first 12 months after childbirth. There are effective and well-researched treatment options to help you recover.
You are not alone. You are not to blame. With help, you will be well.
Perinatal Mental Health is a Family Issue
Whether you are a non-birthing parent trying to support a partner or you think you may be experiencing a perinatal mood or anxiety disorder, we are glad you are here. We want you to know that you are not alone.
Perinatal Mental Health can impact the whole family, not just the parent that birthed the child. Partners can be experience symptoms of perinatal depression & anxiety
Feeling overwhelmed and exhausted
Insecure or Internal pressure to get it right
Crying spells and sadness
Anger and irritability,
Repetitive fears and worries
Queer and Trans Parents
Queer & Trans families have a higher risk for perinatal mood difficulties for a variety of reasons including discrimination, stigma, personal mental health history, possible issues with their family of origin, conception or adoption complications, denial of parental rights, and more.
If you or your partner are experiencing symptoms of perinatal mental health struggles please know you are not alone, with help you can get better.
Click the Read More for more support and resources for LGBTQ+ support