Maternal Mental Health Research Collaborative
Maternal Mental Health Research Collaborative
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MMHRC Blog

Rachell’s Story: This Type of Worry Did Not Seem Logical

I tried to make an offhand, self-deprecating joke when I commented to my doctor at a regular prenatal visit about my habit of checking whether the doors were locked. Something in her face changed, and she re-positioned her body to show me she was paying close attention as she asked, “How much time are you…

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Beth’s Story: My New Normal Now Includes Mental Illness

My pregnancy was blissful with very little morning sickness or fatigue. I had perfect blood work and perfect ultrasounds. Everything was perfect, perfect, perfect.  My body was doing exactly what it should do and my baby was growing beautifully. There Were Still Risk Factors I had absolutely no depression, and just general (normal) worry about…

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Alexis’ Story: Intrusive Thoughts Became My Norm

My story starts with a birth no mother would ever wish for. If I’m being honest, my first encounter with intrusive thoughts occurred after the birth of my first son, but thankfully they were less traumatic and short-lived. No one could have ever prepared me for what I’d experience with my sweet Leo. An Early…

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Lacey’s Story: I Felt Let Down By My Body

At 17 I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety. My doctor prescribed me 10mg of fluoxetine; a tiny little pill made all the difference. I knew postpartum depression would be an issue for me, and I was prepared. Or so I thought. What I wasn’t prepared for was PTSD, thanks to being induced at 41…

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Alison’s Story: When You’re in a Fog…You Don’t Know You Need Help

Mom with baby in NICU

My name is Alison, I’m 37 years old and a first-time mom. My baby was born two months early. I think to people who haven’t had kids born early (like me at the time) you just think the experience must be a bit surprising. Maybe you didn’t have the hospital bag packed yet, or you…

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After Postpartum Depression, There’s No Shame in Only Having One Child

Woman sitting on beach holding young son

After a nightmare experience with postpartum depression, anxiety and PTSD, I have one child and I’ve put the reproductive stage of my life behind me. I was blessed with a magical little boy who turned five only a month ago. His status as an only child will stay, and it’s taken me the last five…

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Intrusive Thoughts Are Scary But They Don’t Make You a Bad Mom

Intrusive thoughts are unwelcome and often very upsetting thoughts that can literally come out of nowhere and leave you horrified. In a flash you may have a vision of dropping your baby or somehow hurting them with your kitchen knives. This thought leaves any mom terrified of what she may be capable of. Intrusive thoughts…

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Medication Shaming is Everywhere and It Has to Stop

Woman looking out window, sad and depressed

Medication shaming and mental health stigma seem to go hand in hand. To me its always seemed that mental illness is slightly more socially acceptable if you’re able to manage it without meds. Those that do end up taking medication are left to tip toe around awkward conversations with co-workers and feel the scorn of…

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Patricia Tomasi: Maternal Mental Health is a Women’s Rights Issue

I got pregnant pretty fast. We thought it would take at least six months because that was the norm among our couple friends. But all it took was one quick romp on the couch before dinner on a Tuesday to make it happen. We didn’t even take our clothes off except, for, you know… We…

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Grieving the Postpartum Experience You Didn’t Have

Grieving your postpartum experience isn’t something you thought you’d do. In a culture that so openly celebrates motherhood and the wonderful experience we’re all supposed to have, it’s hard to separate fact from fiction. Apparently, we’re all missing something unless we have a baby. We can’t fulfill our roles as women without having had a…

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