Therapy For Moms
Is The Reality Of Motherhood Creating Stress, Shame And Sadness?
Are you struggling to adapt to motherhood? Are you feeling isolated, inept, sad, exhausted, overwhelmed and even scared? You may be constantly comparing yourself to other moms who seem to have it all together and beating yourself up for falling short. Maybe you’re a stay-at-home mom feeling guilty and ashamed of how much you’re struggling despite the “luxury” of resources not available to other moms. Or perhaps you’re a working mom feeling torn between work and family, questioning if you can get either right. It might be that you’re endlessly criticizing yourself and wondering if you even know who you are anymore. Do you wish you could get a handle on things, feel confident and competent in what you’re doing and discover a clear sense of self?
Although often depicted as joyous and serene, motherhood can be challenging. You might feel guilty for not being happy, worried about your baby and unsure if you’re doing anything right. Perhaps your relationship with your partner has changed and/or you feel uncomfortable sharing your experience and asking for help from friends and family. You may feel alienated from your body, especially if you’re struggling with nursing, changes in your body’s physical appearance, or recovery from giving birth. Perhaps you have been diagnosed with postpartum depression or anxiety, or wonder if you should be. Regardless of the particulars of your experience, you might fear that something is wrong with the way you are feeling and question if you will be the mother you want to be.
Almost All New Mothers Struggle To Adjust
If you’re struggling to adjust to motherhood, you are far from alone. Almost all new mothers bump up against challenges they didn’t expect, and many experience feelings of sadness, disappointment and fatigue that they feel embarrassed sharing with others. Rather than the joy and fulfillment they expected, many moms experience difficulties managing new routines; the demands of baby, family and work; and the hormonal shifts that come post-pregnancy.
We also live in a competitive culture. Between mommy groups, friends, family, social media and messages mothers receive from society, it can seem as though every other mom has the secrets to the perfect post-pregnancy body, the perfect baby and the perfect balanced life. It’s important to note, however, that what we often see on the surface is not an accurate or realistic representation of what the majority of new mothers experience. There is no such thing as a perfect baby, mother or family. Whether a stay-at-home mom, a professional mom or a single mom, all new moms experience challenges that make them question their abilities, competency and identity. So many moms are searching for ways to adapt to motherhood while honoring their “old selves.” Many also find themselves reevaluating the relationships they have with their own mothers, their partners and their friends.
The good news is that it’s okay to feel uncertain. It’s normal to make mistakes and learn from them. And, it’s okay to not know everything. It’s also okay to reach out for extra support and guidance during this transitional time. So many new moms seem to function very well as they balance work and family life; however, they still might feel as if they are “powering through” and have a cloud over their heads. Your life does not need to feel that way. You can find your own way to be a mother. A skilled, compassionate and experienced therapist who specializes in maternal mental health can help you let go of perfectionistic ideals, define your values, feel more confident and capable in your role as mother and discover what you need to nurture yourself and your growing family.
Therapy For Moms Provides Support, Skills And Strategies For Relief
There is no one way to parent, and in therapy for moms sessions you can find your own way and develop confidence in your ability to care for your baby, family and self. In a safe, nonjudgmental space, you’ll have the freedom to say what you really feel as we explore what’s going on in your life. As we examine the nature of your self-talk and the expectations you had and have for motherhood, we can explore your thoughts and feelings. Together, we can devise practical strategies that can help you transition with greater confidence and a sense of feeling grounded into your new role.
In maternal mental health sessions, you can develop the skills and tools needed to cope with what can be an overwhelming transition with greater ease. It’s often said that you need to give to yourself in order to adequately and sustainably give to others, which is why we’ll focus on self-care and coping strategies that work specifically for you. Drawing from mindfulness techniques, you can learn to become aware of your needs in the present moment, give yourself space to process feelings, identify shifts you can make to feel more empowered and come to a thoughtful understanding of what being a mom means for you. You can learn what serves you well and find the resources—including a tribe of women—that can help you feel understood and supported, which can alleviate unrealistic expectations and dissolve some of the external and self-imposed pressure.
Sessions are also a time for you to gain clarity about who you are now, what you want for your family and how to balance all the important aspects of your life. If needed, your partner can join us for some sessions, which can help you both better understand each other’s needs and wants. I can also provide you with education on child development and tailor parenting techniques specifically for your family. We can discuss the parenting challenges that you’re facing and focus on solutions that can lead to increased closeness and harmony within your whole family.
Motherhood can be a challenge, and I’ll offer you compassionate, warm support and practical strategies that you can apply throughout the process of raising your family. It is possible for you to take proper care of yourself and feel in control of your life again. With help and support during this time of transition, you can create balance and flexibility within new routines, let go of the need to be “super mom” and feel lighter, joyous and more at ease.
You still may have questions or concerns about therapy for new moms…
I have no idea how I’d possibly make the time for therapy.
I understand how much you’re trying to juggle right now. I also know how important it is for you to carve out even just an hour a week to focus on you. I have early morning, afternoon and/or evening availability. I will work with you to find time in your schedule so that you can receive the support you need. In a calm, neutral space, you can develop the insight, tools and strategies that can provide you with immediate relief and serve you well on your parenting journey. Everyone benefits from you taking care of you, especially your baby.
Asking for help makes me feel incompetent. Other mothers do this on their own, and I feel like I should be able to, too.
We all need support in our lives—especially during challenging life transitions. There is nothing wrong with seeking help, and doing so can help you experience a more meaningful and successful transition. Therapy for moms can also help you figure things out faster, feel less overwhelmed and move into this new chapter of your life with increased confidence, ease and joy.
Become The Mother You Want To Be
If you’re struggling with the challenges that come with being a first time mom, postpartum anxiety or depression or ongoing parenting issues in NYC, I can help. I invite you to call my office at 917-969-9560 for a complimentary call. I’m happy to discuss your specific needs and goals and answer any questions you have about therapy for moms and my practice.