Prenatal and postpartum counseling
Promoting hope and healing as you approach your goal of building a family together
It is devastating to long for a child and wonder how you are ever going to get there. As an individual or couple facing infertility it may feel that the world as you know it has been shattered with no roadmap to guide you in moving forward. You are suddenly confronted with problems conceiving you never knew you had and decisions you never imagined having to make. It can feel overwhelming to know what the right course of treatment is and what doctors are best to consult with. Those around you may not know what to say or how best to support you. Or you may feel silenced and unable to express your pain. This difficult journey towards parenthood can take an emotional, physical, and financial toll on you and your relationship. Isolation, depression, grief, loss of intimacy, and lowered self-worth (e.g. “my body has failed me”) are all common responses to infertility.
You do not have to wrestle with all of this alone.
We are here to help walk alongside you and give you tangible strategies to cope with stress which is directly linked to lower pregnancy rates, lower egg count, and a higher number of IVF cycles. Research shows that individuals attending counseling while undergoing infertility treatment experience increased pregnancy rates when compared to those who do not. Counseling can assist you in developing mind-body relaxation strategies, challenging recurrent negative thought patterns, and building a strong network of social supports. We will help you to feel more understood and less alone throughout this process as you build the life you dreamed. Individual, couple, and group services are available to meet your unique needs.
Offering understanding and comfort for your profound loss
At any stage of your pregnancy, the loss you experience is profound. Imagining how to move on after losing a pregnancy and the loss of the future hopes and dreams you held may be incomprehensible. Grief in the form of intense waves of shock, anger, sadness, guilt, or longing can be overwhelming and can understandably impact your day-to-day functioning. You may feel stuck wondering how or why this happened or experience anxiety about future pregnancies. While pregnancy loss is common it is often not spoken about leaving individuals feeling unseen, unrecognized, and alone.
You do not have to grieve your loss alone.
We are here to help you to process and share your pain in a supportive and validating environment. Research shows that seeking therapy early can help to reduce emotional distress, depression, and anxiety in the first year following pregnancy loss. Counseling can help you to cope with painful triggers and anniversaries (e.g. due date, hospital visit, anniversary of pregnancy loss etc.), improve communication with your partner to best support one another during this difficult time, and establish meaningful rituals to honor your loss.
Providing relief during a season of overwhelming adjustment
There are so many pressures and expectations placed upon mothers that can feel impossible to live up to. Society tells us that bringing home your baby is supposed to be the happiest time of your life but many women feel exhausted, overwhelmed, isolated, anxious, or depressed. In reality postpartum distress is the most common complication of pregnancy. Eighty percent of all women experience some form of distress and 20% experience a Postpartum Mood and Anxiety Disorder (PMAD) within the first 12 months of giving birth.
So if motherhood is not what you expected, it is okay and we are here to help.
During this challenging time you might…
- feel tired and weepy for no reason
- wonder why you are not bonding with your baby the way you expected
- check on your baby repeatedly to make sure they are safe
- experience intrusive thoughts of harm coming to your baby
- fear that you are a bad mother
- internally think, “will I ever be able to get this right”
If you have experienced similar thoughts or feelings listed above, the distress you are experiencing is temporary and treatable with therapeutic support. We will help you to learn tools to cope with uncomfortable emotions and worries, create space for self-care, and grow into the role of motherhood. Ultimately we will help you to thrive beyond survival mode.