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Perinatal Anxiety & Perinatal Depression

Tackling New Mom Stress 1

Perinatal Anxiety & Perinatal Depression

When my kids were very young, summer was always the most stressful time of year for me. I felt a tremendous amount of pressure to make the most of each day, plan amazing family trips, make memories and somehow relax while doing it. What summer meant to me was the constant fear of kids drowning in swimming pools, fights over suntan lotion, fear of hot cars and losing kids at the park, never enough time to cook or do the mundane day-to-day things that keep a household running. It was three months of pressure, stress and fear. It is normal to feel overwhelmed as a new mother or a mother who is going through the transition of growing a family. Perinatal anxiety goes beyond being overwhelmed; it is fear, it is constant worry that robs the joy from life and motherhood. I felt like I needed to do it all, and I somehow did, but at the cost of my own mental health. Looking back on it, I know that I was exhibiting all the signs of postpartum anxiety.

Perinatal anxiety (perinatal means that it can begin during the pregnancy, not just afterwards) looks different from perinatal depression, and is often harder to identify because the mother/parent experiencing it is often outwardly incredibly successful. Parents experiencing perinatal anxiety often work full time jobs, have active social calendars, active social lives and look incredibly put together. I remember that I was often complimented on my ability to multitask, when, in reality, I multitasked because I was scared that saying “no” meant that I was a failure. Perinatal anxiety is often experienced in conjunction with perinatal depression but not always. For those experiencing perinatal anxiety, the fear of failure, the anxiety over not being a “good” mother often makes seeking help even more difficult.

Hopeful Beginnings offers free counseling for perinatal anxiety as well as perinatal depression. Our counseling is always free and always confidential. Because we do not use insurance, clients will never pay a co-pay, never receive an explanation of benefits in the mail. There is never shame in asking for help, but removing the fear of being “discovered,” or not being a “perfect” mother, is a huge relief for many. The ability to connect with clients via telehealth or in person, or a mix of both, also makes therapy easier to fit into the busy life of a parent of a young child.

If you are experiencing perinatal anxiety, or if you have someone in your life that you suspect needs help, please reach out to us today! And remember, all parents -including dads – can experience perinatal mood disorders; Hopeful Beginnings is proud to serve all parents.

For more information, visit our website:

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