It used to be that new mothers were surrounded by a community of other mothers, as well as grandmothers and great-grandmothers. There was a tremendous amount of support available. And, we had many models of how to be a mother. We weren't just exposed to the parenting style of our own mothers.
Today there are very few of us who are immersed in intergenerational communities. Our apporaches to mothering are shaped deeply by both what we liked and disliked about how our own mothers parented us; but we often don't have many other models. Unresolved fear, anger, and sadness from relationships and events of our own childhood shape the way we mother in unseen ways. Whether those effect our children negatively or not, they definitely prevent us from mothering in a way that feels authentic and satisfying.
Your journey to authentic motherhood is your own unique experience. I can serve as a guide to help you get where you want to be. Together, we can craft a healing approach that meets your individual needs and goals. What follows is an overview of some of the issues that I can help with.
Your Journey To Motherhood
Your journey to motherhood began long before you became pregnant. It began the first time you played with dolls and imagined yourself as a mother. You could even say that it begin earlier than that, when you met your own mother. If you're considering pregnancy or are already pregnant then it's likely you have a lot on your mind. Extra support during this time of change is invaluable. Some of the things woman choose to work on include:
- perinatal depression
- perinatal anxiety
- processing previous traumatic births
- concerns about pregnancy and birth
- worries about being a 'good enough' mother
- resolving sexual trauma which may be affecting your ob/gyn care
- preparing for parenthood with your partner
During my pregnancy, I was surprised by the concerns that came up for me and the old issues, which I thought were resolved, that resurfaced. This is a common experience for many women.
Because each journey is unique, you and I will work together to develop an individualized plan that identifies the skills and resources you wish to develop within yourself. We will also choose therapeutic interventions that are the best match for your needs and goals. As needed, I will be happy to refer you to additional providers who can offer bodywork, naturopathic medicine, and other services.
The postpartum period is an incredible period of transition. All of the preparations, the expectations, the hopes and the fears from the journey to motherhood culminate in your chid's birth, and then . . . begins an entirely different hazy, sleep-deprived, and sometimes panicky period of adjusting to actually being a mother.
The first six months or so of life with baby have their own challenges. Some of the things women choose to work on during this period include:
- postpartum depression
- postpartum anxiety
- bonding and attachment with your infant
- feelings about nursing, supplementing, and bottle-feeding
- processing traumatic birth experience
- relationship with your partner now that baby is here
- balancing work and motherhood
- accessing support from family, friends, and community
- supporting yourself
- healing childhood wounds
I'd like to share a little story about bonding and attachment. My infant had a different orientation to the world than I did-- he was vertically oriented (often stretching his body up and away from me) whereas I tend to curl inward. Mothers who have babies with different orientations from themselves often feel rejected or distant from their babies. Or they can feel like they just don't understand their babies. I was glad that I had been trained to notice these movement styles-- it was easier for me to see my little infant for who he was.
Who's taking care of you?
Wrapped up in efforts to be a 'good enough' mother, women tend to (and are unhelpfully encouraged to) put their needs on the back burner. If you're feel like you need more care or support, I'm happy to help you.
You want to be the best parent you can be, of course you do. And if you're raising your child with a partner, then I know that person wants to be the best parent they can be too. But how do you do that? Some parts of parenting come easily and other parts take a lot of work.
Some of the issues that mothers work on with me as the learn how to parent authentically are:
- unresolved childhood issues that impact your parenting
- relationship with your partner as you settle into your roles as parents
- adjustment to changing roles in relationships with family of origin, friends, and community
- bonding and attachment with your young child
While you address those issues, you'll build to the skills to parent in a way that helps you find joy and connection with your child and your partner. That includes:
- understanding child development and 'normal' behavior
- respecting and appreciating your child's differences from you
- staying calm and loving in the middle of conflict
- communicating effectively about emotions
- setting boundaries
Whether you call this mindful parenting, conscious parenting, peaceful parenting, or authentic parenting, it's all basically the same thing-- parenting from your heart.
Get A Free Consultation
If you'd like to get started with personal growth counseling, give me a call at 614-398-2051. We'll find time for your free 15 minute consultation. During the consultation, you can ask your questions and we will explore if we'd be a good match. Call or email anytime to talk with me and find out more.
Online counseling is available for people living outside of Columbus and mothers of infants