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grapes-690230_640Today, I did something for myself. I went to a salon and had my hair done. Not just a simple trim, wash, and go. Nope. I had a full hair color session complete with highlights. It was a huge deal for me to walk into somewhere completely new, trust someone I never met before with my hair, and not feel an ounce of anxiety over any of it.

As I sat down in the salon and waited for the stylist, Fight Song by Rachel Platten came on over the radio. I shared, in the conference Alumni group, that it was a sign I was precisely where I needed to be at that moment. I sighed, sank into the chair, and let my mind wander away until it was time for me to move over into the chair. Once I was seated in front of the mirror and saw my reflection, a funny thing happened. It was the first time, while at a salon, that I didn’t hate my reflection. I finally, finally looked like ME.

Back when I was experiencing Postpartum OCD, there is no way I would have done something like I did today. Nope. For me, back then, pushing my boundaries was as big as managing a trip to the grocery store with an infant strapped to my chest or sometimes, just making it through the day without a panic or rage attack. My world was so small then. So dark. So scary. So…hopeless.

But now?

It’s bright.

It’s filled with self-care.

It’s filled with warm people who know where I have been because they have been there as well. They get me.

It’s a lovely place to be, to be honest.

For that, I am grateful. But not in the way you would think.

In college, one of my favourite professors would often babble on about how one had to taste the sour grapes life offered in order to fully appreciate the sweet ones.

Postpartum OCD (and friends depression, PTSD, and antenatal depression) was my big ole’ bunch of stinking sour grapes.

This life now? The happy full one filled with amazing strong women, genuine happiness, personal strength, and boundaries larger than I ever thought I would see? My sweet, sweet, sweet grape.

If you’re in the midst of a bunch of sour grapes right now? Know that your sweet grapes are waiting for you. They are.

{photo credit: pixabay Grapes, bunch, fruit, person holding}

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Guest Post: Doing It All Again

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I had the pleasure of meeting Graeme in Boston at the first ever Warrior Mom™ Conference this past July. She’s simply fabulous and her hugs are amazing. She’s also wholly dedicated to mamas with Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders. I’m glad she’s sharing this post today. I can almost picture her exhaling in her oasis. Read on…maybe you’ll be able to picture it too.

veranda-349696_640At the back of our little house is a screened in porch. We’ve never really used it. It’s where our family and friends who smoke go to smoke. It’s where we keep the grill that cannot sit outside even though it has a cover on it. It’s where most of my gardening projects go to die.

Or it was.

A while ago I found an online coupon for pressure washing and when the gentleman came to wash the house I shamelessly used my super pregnant belly to get him to clean out the porch as well.

Then I bought paint. And hanging plants. And an Adirondack chair and a rocking chair. And a rug. Eventually there will be a fan, a space heater, and some art out there as well. I’m doing all of this because I’m pregnant and I’ve been here before.

When my son was born I couldn’t leave the house without having panic attacks for a few months.  I wasn’t anxious or scared about any particular thing. There was no specific fear I could counter – I just could not leave the house and I definitely could not leave the house alone.  He loved being outside though. Just opening the door and standing on the front step could calm him.  It made me feel like crawling out of my skin.

My postpartum depression was filled with rage and angst. There was no place in the house that felt like it was mine. There was no place that I fit.  I was itchy and uncomfortable and hyper-sensitized all the time.  I couldn’t sleep if there was clutter, or too many people, or things out of place. So I didn’t sleep. Then the four- month sleep regression hit and NONE of us could sleep and things got really bad really quick.

Now it is a little over two years later. I’m much better.  My little family is much better.  My son kisses my belly every day before I leave him at daycare and says, “Bye Bebe! Bye Mama!” There is no fear in Adam’s eyes when he comes home from work. When my daughter isn’t trying to score a goal on my ribs, I can actually sleep.

I’d like to keep it that way.  I’ve been back on my medication for about two months now.  I reach out to other mamas who are heading into ‘round two’. My bookshelf is full of recommendations from my friends and doctors. I’ll start seeing a therapist next month to get even more ready.  My diet and exercise are much better and I have a plan mapped out of what to do and who to call if I start to spiral after this baby arrives.

Soon, very soon, I will also have an oasis. I will have a way to be outside without having to be outside. I will have a place that is mine, a place where I fit and where I can feel safe and calm.  In my daydreams I can feed my daughter there while my son plays around us.  If the nightmares come instead, I will have a haven, an oasis.  It is one of many reasons that I can face the fears with strength and hope.

My story didn’t end with Postpartum Depression and Anxiety. We’re still in the early chapters yet.


20150711_181851-1Graeme Seabrook is a mother of one, soon to be mother of two, blogger, businesswoman, nail polish fanatic, and survivor of Postpartum Depression and Anxiety. You can find her at her blog, on Facebook, or on Twitter as Honestly Mama G.



{photo source: pixabay}

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Intrusive Thoughts: A Conversation

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emergency-stop-buttonYesterday, I wrote “Let’s Talk About Intrusive Thoughts.” Today? I’ve intertwined stories from moms (including myself) who have all experienced intrusive thoughts in one form or another during their postpartum experience. For one mom, she didn’t experience them until her son was two and she was off medication, something that made the experience even more difficult.

Again, as with yesterday’s post, if you are in a fragile state, please skip reading, particularly if you find that you are easily influenced by reading the experiences of others. We don’t hold anything back.

I also want to remind our readers that every mother’s experience and subsequent reaction/seeking of help is different; molded to her own life and journey. These mothers did the best they could with what they had available to them at the time – the important thing, though, is that each one of them fought like hell the best way they could to get free of these horrible thoughts holding them captive.

Today’s video is a fun one. Tiny Hamsters Tiny Date. Hamsters. On a DATE. AWWWWW.





coffee-791201_640Picture it, 2015, a small coffee shop on Main Street. A group of women sitting, sipping various hot beverages, chatting among themselves. No one thinks anything of it, until they get close enough to hear their conversation.

“I wanted to smother my daughters on the day my brain nearly broke. The thought played over and over in my head. Before THE day, I had obsessive thoughts about knives. I couldn’t use them. I cleaned obsessively. Scrubbed my hands. I exclusively pumped for my second daughter, which only fed my cleaning obsession. The stress. The meds. They broke me. I just couldn’t do it anymore. Before the thought grew feet, I curled up in the fetal position in bed, afraid that if I got up, I wouldn’t be able to control my actions. I still remember the way the wind rustled through the giant oak outside the window and the squirrels scurrying along the massive limbs. I had never been so scared in my entire life.” Even though she shared her experience this often, her voice still broke as the memories washed over her.

“I wanted to drive my car into oncoming traffic while my kids were in the car. And don’t get me started about the panic attacks I would have while driving,” one of them said.

The rest nodded slowly, their faces somber yet understanding.

“I wanted to drive off overpasses or bridges. I would think, what if I just let go of the steering wheel? I also thought about not waking up in the morning. Something I later found out was what they call passive suicidal idealizations. I didn’t really want to hurt or kill myself, I just didn’t want to wake up. Oh, and while pregnant with my second? I wanted to throw myself down the stairs.”

As the women nodded, one of them clenched her cup a little tighter, then started to speak, softly.

“I…I…..I bounced back and forth between harm and sexual. Mostly knives and pillows were the focus of the harm ones. But really anything I saw turned into a weapon in my mind that could hurt my son. Then, an incident happened at our church where a mother and her husband were assaulting her daughter. My mind latched right on to it as if it were the edge of a cliff and if I let go, I’d fall. I thought she was “normal”…and I thought I was “normal.” If she could do it, then what was to stop me from doing it? This thought swallowed me whole, it was always there, clinging to me: did I wipe too much…was I looking at “it” …. did I want to do something? Mostly with my child but during the worst of it, even when we were in public…which I started to avoid because I was convinced something in my mind flipped and I WAS my thoughts. It was around his first birthday when the other ones popped up. The news or shows I watched determined my obsessive thoughts for the day. During the worst of it, I would say if I had one every 30 was a GREAT day as they were always one after another. …no breaks.”

The others in the group again nodded in solidarity. There wasn’t much they hadn’t heard by this point.

“I didn’t realize I had a problem when my son was an infant. I just couldn’t stop picturing the real dangerous chemicals that do actually “off gas.” At some point, I crossed from knowing that this was an environmental hazard to picturing or imagining the chemicals on our skin, in our hair, in the air we were breathing. They eventually had colors. Each type had a different color. The worst was plastic being heated…” her voice trailed off. This realization has been tough for her.

“I had visions of stabbing my precious new baby over and over.  I couldn’t stop them.  I couldn’t conjure up a happy thought.  I couldn’t distract myself.  I couldn’t relax.  I sure as hell couldn’t zone out watching the Food Channel with knives being brandished left and right.  It was like being stuck in rough surf close to the beach where you just can’t seem to make headway on land before the next wave crashes over you.  I was in a black hole of terror that started a few days after my beloved son was born.  My soul draining each moment as the horror show played over and over in my head.  What kind of a mother would ever think such a thing?”

Finally, the last woman in the group spoke, “My story doesn’t start when my son was an infant. Two years later, and off medication, my anxiety came back, fiercely. I was a very angry person. Was off for three months. Never felt quite like myself. Then we went on vacation. I don’t know if it was the stress of the trip or my brain just not being well, but my anxiety came back just as it was when the baby was born. But worse…I thought I had moved past it all. I was very angry. Couldn’t look at my child. I even had a fleeting intrusive thought of pushing him in front of a moving car while we went for an evening walk. And whenever my son wanted to wrestle around, as boys do, I had urges to actually cause him harm. Thoughts would pop up of pushing him down or being really rough with him.”

Customers in the coffee shop came and went, catching fragments of the conversation as they did so, each of them slightly perplexed at the depth and magnitude of the topic contrasted with the seemingly nonchalant way these women were discussing these dark thoughts in public. But not one of them stopped to comment or join in. There were a few raised eyebrows and strange looks as the snippets delved into their space, but nothing beyond that.

The women continued, sipping coffee and tea as the sun peered through the window of the quiet coffee shop, discussing how they each managed to move past these thoughts intruding on their lives.

“I ended up in the ER, then in a psychiatric ward. My med was changed. I began practicing self-care. I threw myself into advocacy and growing my own support group. I needed to know that my crazy wasn’t going to be permanent, that others had survived. Eventually, I ended up on meds and in therapy. I’m still on meds, for OCD & anxiety, and I am okay with that. I remember hating the pills. But now? They’re part of me and just the way things are. I’m a much stronger woman and mother because of what I have been through. And my self-care skills rock.”

“I would shake my head to banish these thoughts of driving into oncoming traffic from my mind. Eventually, I realized I am not my thoughts. They didn’t hold any power over me. I listened to music, books on tape, called friends and family, used deep breathing techniques from yoga. I pictured these horrible thoughts as bubbles just floating away. The thoughts still crop up from time to time when I am sleep deprived or very stressed. Medication and therapy were key to helping me develop the tools I needed. I needed to change that negative loop in my head and realize that my thoughts were just thoughts.“ She sipped her coffee, legs crossed as she glanced around the cozy shop.

“Medication helped immensely. Therapy helped me find strategies to cope with and shut down the thoughts. When my anxiety is high these days, I still struggle with Intrusive rage-filled thoughts. But I am better armed to recognize them and cope,” she said, firmly.

“I constantly asked my husband if he thought I would xyz. I was told that I had to stop confessing so the thoughts would become less important to me. That was SO hard, because I thought if I just “sat” with them in my mind, it meant I was ok with the thoughts. But eventually, I saw that it did work. It was a hard battle to be ok with them NOT bothering me because I was always told crazy people don’t know they’re crazy…the thoughts don’t bother them. When they started to bother me less, I worried!!! I still have them, but now I can brush them off. If I let myself slip and start confessing, it’s like a drug. It stops the anxiety for just a little bit. It feels so good you want to continue! I have to also watch what I read or see on tv because I find myself comparing: if they did that, maybe I would too. I even remember comparing myself to all those mass shooters. I searched for news stories of Andrea Yates, seeking any tiny trait similar between those folks and me. Now, I always try to bring up intrusive thoughts with my moms. Intrusive thoughts are SO not talked about and really should be.”

“My thoughts would get softer, like music, if I could avoid them. I tried to shop my way out of it, too. Organic cloth diapers with wool covers hand made by other moms. Glass and stainless steel. Only one brand of organic formula. Organic foods for me and the baby. New shower curtain, fabric and then a phthalate-free liner. I cleaned with vinegar or baking soda. Washing clothes. I did so much laundry. I knew all the ingredients in my laundry detergent. I could handle even pajamas with flame retardant chemicals if I just washed them enough….which doesn’t actually do much, but it was not as logical a compulsion as it seemed to be. I also sought out other moms who worried about the same things, or did the same things, so that I could talk about cleaning with essential oils or lanolizing wool without sounding “crazy.” I’m just now starting to talk about what all of this really was. It explains so much about my many behaviours.”

“I slowly got better with therapy and medication. The intrusive thoughts ebbed and finally faded.  Only there was still this huge gaping hole in my heart. I swear you could see all the way to infinity and back that hole was so big. I was sure I would never really be happy again or be joyful as mother because this terrible experience haunted me. I put on brave face. I cared for and played with my baby. I worked hard at my job. I prayed, tried to meditate, did yoga, spent time with dear family and friends, and watched chick flicks. I did all my happy things. Only it was still there—that void of fear and sadness over this experience. One day I found a blog full of other mothers’ stories of surviving postpartum mood disorders.  The founder put it out there in a matter-of-fact way about how postpartum depression, anxiety, OCD and psychosis are simply treatable diseases. And she got other women to share their stories on her blog.  Reading these stories let me know I wasn’t alone. It was huge. Apparently, a lot of us moms obsess over just one terrible image. Our brains all go haywire in a similar way!”

Every mother there nodded in agreement, knowing exactly how it felt to be the owner of a brain gone horribly haywire.

“I would have to stop playtime, breathe and regroup my thoughts. Knowing I didn’t WANT to cause him harm, and wouldn’t, but was scared of what might happen if I continued. I’ve come to terms with so much the past six months. The Climb and all my warrior moms have really helped a lot this year. I am a proudly medicated mommy! Things are much better these days. Much better.”

The moms chatted for awhile longer, about more acceptable things, such as childhood milestones, what kind of wines they preferred, and what their weekend plans were for the upcoming holiday. As the conversation navigated in this direction, the reaction of the customers in the coffee shop as they passed by them changed. They smiled, offered suggestions about local events for the upcoming holiday, and one older woman even complimented one of the mothers on her jewelry.

As the mothers stood to leave, each of them grabbing their purses, making sure they had their phones and their keys, they hugged, a little tighter than they would normally, because they had bonded in a way mothers who haven’t been in this type of hell can’t.

They went their separate ways, then, their hearts and minds forever entwined as fierce survivors and warriors.


PS. If today’s post has you feeling fragile, please find me on Twitter @unxpctdblessing or email me at mypostpartumvoice(@) I will be happy to talk with you about whatever it is you’re feeling.


{photo source, pixabay}

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6 Tips for Healthy Internet Support

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mouse and keyboardThe Internet. For those of us seeking help and company in the horrible isolation that is a Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder, the Internet can be the helping hand we have longed for as we sink into the depths of our own private hells. The Internet may also be a source of magnification for intrusive thoughts, like one of those games with a claw that reaches down and dispenses toys (only in our case, a new obsession/intrusive thought is dropped into our heads). Or we can get so caught up in the support we have found online that we ignore the support right in front of us, not even realizing we are doing so.

So how do we avoid these pitfalls as we search for our tribe in the darkest of our days?

I’ve gathered a few tips for you:

Have someone you trust search for information for you. If all you are seeking is more information on your condition and not an online support resource, get someone you trust to provide you with information. Explain to them that you just want the facts. Signs, symptoms, treatment, how to handle it. Nothing more, nothing less. No scary stories about moms, just plain and simple facts. In fact, we have something you can use right here at Postpartum Progress..

When using a forum, be mindful of your own healthy boundaries. What do I mean by this? If you know you are easily influenced, don’t read posts by others. Ask your question, read the replies. Don’t meander all over the forum if something might set you off. How can you do this? Esther Dale said she has a keyword list of things she knows trigger her and she will scan for those words before reading anything. This goes for the entire Internet as well. Know thy limits, mama, and keep them.

Speaking of limits, set a TIME limit for participation in any forum. Yes, it’s difficult to set aside any amount of time as a new mother, but with the advent of smartphones (and smartwatches), many new moms have increasing and unlimited access to the Internet at any time of day. Decide when you’ll access the Internet for support and STICK TO THOSE TIMES. Unless, of course, something urgent comes up and you need to reach out. Bottom line, don’t spend your entire day browsing the forums and ingesting a bunch of issues other people are experiencing. Live your life, reach out when you need to, and then step away.

Recognizing a reputable website/forum: This can be difficult, but it’s necessary to be able to do this as in this day and age, anyone can slap a website up and call it a day. I’ve written a post about browsing the Internet safely here. Also, most websites dealing with Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders will have:

Heard of/make mention of Postpartum Progress and/or Postpartum Support International

A disclaimer encouraging you to clear any information found on said website with a physician prior to implanting it.

Not promise to CURE your Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorder. (This one is HUGE. HUGE. Any website which promises to CURE your Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorder is preying on you and should be absolutely avoided.)

Demand you send payment to access their information, which, surprisingly, promises to CURE your Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorder.

Grow your offline support group instead. While it’s tough for many moms to locate in person support for a myriad of reasons (access, stigma, financial, etc…), it is important to grow your in person support in addition to the support you have online. For those who have partners who are not supportive, have them visit your doctor with you so he/she can discuss any concerns or misunderstandings of your issues with them. Have the doctor explain what they can do to help you through your Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorder.

Get outside. Take the baby, put them in a stroller, and go for a walk. Breathe in the fresh air, look at the sky, watch the trees sway in the wind. Changing your scenery, getting some good old fashioned Vitamin D, and exhaling your issues helps tremendously. Is it a cure? No. But it’s a baby step toward living life to the fullest again, even if you only manage to get to the mailbox or just down the block on your first try.

Support is key to Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders. For many, many, many mamas, that support comes from the Internet. It is important to balance this support with in-life support including your family, a healthcare professional, and friends. It is okay to need a day here or there to yourself, we all need downtime. But if you find yourself constantly checking your phone, reading forums or scanning for information on the Internet obsessively and getting snappy if someone interrupts what you are doing, then it’s time for you to step away from the Internet and back into the real world. Don’t worry, the support on the Internet won’t disappear – it will still be there as you need it. But as you reach out to the Internet, make sure you’re reaching out to the real physical world around you as well. You’re worth it.


This is not at all an exhaustive list of signs or suggestions to avoid triggers/maintain mental health while researching or seeking help on the Internet. If you think you or someone you know may be showing signs of Internet Addiction, please talk to someone about it. Likewise, if you are in need of support for Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders, you can find it right here, in The Warrior Mom Community. Please use it mindfully.


{photo source: Computer, Mouse, keyboard – pixabay}

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5 Steps Toward Becoming a Better Advocate

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Divya KimarPlease welcome Divya Kumar, a speaker from the Warrior Mom™ Conference in July, with the second of her two-part series on expanding outreach to underserved communities. In Wednesday’s post, we examined how “looking at perinatal mood and anxiety disorders through a “lens of diversity” can help us see how different aspects of our identities—and our privilege—affect our experiences with PPD.” Today, she shares practical strategies for advocates and peer supporters to put into action as they expand their own outreach.

Using privilege to become better advocates

How can we, as survivors, be better advocates for all moms who are struggling with PPD and related illnesses? As part of my presentation, I showed a Jay Smooth clip called “The Oscars and Learning the Craft of Being Good,” recorded shortly after the Oscars in 2015. In this 5-minute clip, he underscores the need to constantly work to change the status quo. Assuming that you are a good person and therefore that you will always do the right thing is an easy trap to fall into. Instead, we need to make a conscious, consistent effort to promote equity and inclusivity.

How does this relate to expanding outreach to underserved communities?

Like Jay Smooth reminds us, being well meaning isn’t enough. It’s easy to say, “Everyone is welcome! This is a free event open to all! We serve all moms and families!” but unless we communicate that through what we do, those words may ring hollow to some moms. Our actions need to communicate the message of inclusivity, so that moms can look at what we’re doing and say, “Oh, that’s for me.” As a woman of color, if I see only a white woman on a flier or logo, I know in my gut that this event or service is not really for me—despite the organizers’ good intentions.

What words do we use in our messages? What are the images on our fliers and logos? Where are our organizing meetings held and when? If we don’t think carefully about these details, it will be all too easy for us to fail at inclusivity—not because we don’t mean well or we don’t care deeply, but because maintaining the status quo is so very easy, and, before we know it, we are in an echo chamber at our local coffee shop with our friends.

What are some tangible places to start?

No one is expected to know everything there is to know about communities that are not our own, but educating ourselves before we begin our outreach is a great first step. Read up on privilege, reflect on your own privilege, and read more about disenfranchised populations in your local area. Check out the links at the end of this post if you want to read more!

  1. When you think about expanding your outreach, think about where moms may be. Go to one place you have never gone before. Call folks that you have never met before. Who are leaders in different communities? Call them up. If you don’t know whom to call, perhaps go to your local community center, women’s center, or health center. Along these lines, where do you hold meetings, meet-ups, or groups? Are they accessible by public transportation? Of course, all of these changes may take time, but making even change and one step towards changing the statues quo is important!
  1. Create a resource list that you can share with moms who are struggling, and think about how to incorporate different types of services that may address different needs. You may want to research and include
    • Community health centers
    • Community doula programs
    • Any postpartum or breastfeeding support provided by women of color
    • Mental health providers that accept different health insurances, including Medicaid
    • Domestic violence and sexual assault agencies
    • LGBTQ organizations
    • Visiting nurse programs
    • Early Intervention programs
    • Concrete services—agencies that connect new families with resources like car seats, diapers, and baby related supplies
    • Services that are provided in languages other than English
  1. Along with a resource list, identify some community agencies, groups, and leaders. See if you can meet with them and learn about their priorities and the changes they are advocating for. Establishing relationships can take time and doesn’t happen with one phone call or meeting; it’s important to keep showing up to meetings and to listen. Ask how you can support the work that is rooted in and growing out of these communities. When you build relationships, remember that part of being an ally means understanding and supporting the goals of underserved communities—not promoting your own goals or agenda.
  1. Work within your own demographic to educate folks who share your privilege. As I said in my previous post, reflecting on our privilege helps us think about how to work with folks who share our privilege to advocate for changes that benefit everyone. For example, if you are a white woman and are organizing an event in your community to raise awareness about perinatal mood disorders, and the folks coming to your meetings are other white women, you can distribute reading materials about how women of color are disproportionately affected by these disorders and discuss how the work you’re doing can intersect with any racial justice efforts in your area.
  1. Consider advocating for systemic change. Is there a local agency that is advocating for paid parental leave? Or increasing insurance coverage and reimbursement for mental health services? How can you collaborate with these folks?Is there a legislator who is championing any advocacy around perinatal mood disorders? And who is your legislator?  Give these folks a phone call. As a constituent, you can absolutely call up and say, “My name is ____ and I live in your district, and I am concerned about the lack of support services for women experiencing perinatal mood and anxiety disorders”. In Massachusetts, we are fortunate to have a Commission on Postpartum Depression chaired by Representative Ellen Story and Senator Joan Lovely; perhaps your local legislator would be willing to chair a similar committee in your state.

And remember…

Above all, remember that this is a dynamic process that we will (ideally) engage in for the rest of our lives, largely because that’s part of the responsibility of having privilege—to use that privilege to create changes that benefit everyone. By thinking about privilege, diversity, and where moms are (both literally and figuratively), we can be better advocates and do a better job helping other moms.

Are we going to make mistakes? Absolutely; maybe many, many times. We are always learning; that’s a crucial piece of the dynamic nature of this process. When we make mistakes, we apologize, and then we go back to the starting points of educating ourselves and understanding our own privilege so that we can continue to be better advocates.

At the Warrior Mom™ Conference, I read an Audre Lorde quotation: “There is no such thing as a single issue struggle, because we do not live single issue lives.” Yes, we are all survivors of perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, and we hope to raise awareness about these disorders, destigmatize them, and support women who have experienced them. Integrating an understanding of privilege and intersectionality can strengthen our work, widen our reach, and increase our impact.

Further reading:

White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack,  by Peggy McIntosh 

The Origins of “Privilege,” by Joshua Rothman

(an interview with Peggy McIntosh in the May 12, 2014 issue of The New Yorker)

Everyday Feminism often posts helpful articles on privilege and being an ally, like these:

If you are local to Boston, check out these educational opportunities: White People Challenging Racism courses in Boston

Kerry Washington at the 2015 GLADD Media Awards on intersectionality and representation:

photo credit: Divya Kumar

Divya Kumar, Sc.M., CLC, PPD

Divya Kumar has a Masters in public health and is certified as a postpartum doula and lactation counselor.  In 2013, she helped create a state-funded perinatal support pilot program in four community health centers in Massachusetts.  She currently provides perinatal support for women and families at Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center, one of the four pilot sites.  In addition, she facilitates support groups for new parents and conducts workshops about the transition to parenthood.  Divya tells it like it is and brings honesty, compassion, camaraderie, and humor to her work with new families.  She is also the mother of two children and a survivor of perinatal emotional complications.

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