by Danielle D Jenkins, PsyD
As we round the corner into the second Mother’s Day in the pandemic I find myself struggling with celebrating Mother’s Day even more than usual. Don’t get me wrong, I love greeting card holidays. Love them! Valentines is my favorite, and the other non-religious ones like Mother’s Day follow closely. I adore days where we set aside time to reflect on certain types of people and say thank you for what they do and who they are. Even in times when I have been sad or at odds with the idea of motherhood, I have still liked Mother’s Day. I was still able reflect on the various types of mothers I’ve had in my life and I am totally a sucker for the sweet preschool Mother’s Day projects my friends and clients post on Facebook or show my in sessions. I mean come on that stuff is pure gold!!
However, this year, I am struck anew by the fact that we don’t listen very well to women and what they need and want. We glorify...
By Danielle D. Jenkins, PsyD
A hallmark of early parenthood, especially of early motherhood, is the feeling that this is not what I expected. Some people adjust easily to this reality and others take a while (and even some therapy) to fully integrate the difference between the expectation and reality. Right now, however, with a global pandemic, this difference between expectation and experience is widening. Women are experiencing changes to birth plans, an even greater lack of help and support, and likely some level of crisis while they are most vulnerable. The women I know who have just delivered are struggling with loneliness and fear.
So, we know things are not going to be as we expected or hoped for. That is hard. It is okay to grieve that. Give yourself space to grieve what you wanted and even planned for. It’s okay to be mad and sad that you have not had the experience you wanted (whether we are talking birth or postpartum). Let me say that again. You are allowed to have...
A guest blog by April Lovelace Simmons
In the first few weeks of motherhood, as a women recovers from growing a complete human and then forcefully expelling it from her body, there is a lot of uncertainty. The new mother is uncertain of her new life and role. The freshly minted father wonders how to care for his wife, precious new baby, and if he will ever have time to play video games again. Friends and caregivers anxiously attempt to anticipate needs and take bets on who will be the little newbie’s babysitter of choice. With her world so unsettled and resources so deprived, the new mother begins to wonder how she will fill obligations outside of healing her body and caring for a newborn. Thus, she turns to her phone and reads endless lists and blogs and posts and pins so she knows what to expect… and what others expect. To aid her in this crucial search, I have composed an exhaustive and definitive list of the seven things that every new mom should absolutely never...
By Darcy Sauers of https://www.thedouladarcy.com/
Having a baby is one of life’s biggest transitions and greatest joys. However, many mothers find themselves feeling extremely isolated and overwhelmed during the postpartum period after the initial excitement, adrenaline and stream of visitors has subsided.
Hiring a postpartum doula can help reverse those feelings and provide the support that new mothers need to instead have a maternity leave that is filled with feelings of contentment and empowerment.
Postpartum doulas are non-medical professionals who provide new families with hands-on support as well as evidence-based information on newborn care, feeding and mom’s physical recovery.
Here are the top 5 benefits of hiring a postpartum doula:
By Danielle D. Jenkins, PsyD
Matrescence is a term created by Dana Raphael to define the time in a woman’s life as she moves from pre-conception through the postpartum period and beyond. It is a critical period that is full of transition, identity shifts, and hormonal fluctuations. It’s a term that is starting to become more well-known and an experience that is felt by everyone who becomes a mom.
Aurélie Athan, Ph.D. says this about matrescence, “The process of becoming a mother, coined by Dana Raphael, Ph.D. (1973), is a developmental passage where a woman transitions through pre-conception, pregnancy and birth, surrogacy or adoption, to the postnatal period and beyond. The exact length of matrescence is individual, recurs with each child, and may arguably last a lifetime! The scope of the changes encompass multiple domains --bio-psycho-social-political-spiritual-- and can be likened to the developmental push of adolescence.”
And just as...