Five common mental health concerns for new parents

When you find out your expecting a new baby, it can bring about a range of thoughts and feelings. One thing is for certain: change - from your body to your habits and more!

As a new or expecting parent, it’s normal to have questions and concerns.

  1. I’m worried that seeing a pregnancy and postpartum therapist means I’ll be judged as a bad mom.

    Absolutely not. Your body has undergone changes with lasting physical and emotional effects. It’s a lot to adjust to, and it’s perfectly normal to feel overwhelmed. When you are sleep deprived, haven’t had time to shower, or haven’t had any quiet time to yourself, you naturally won’t feel your best. There’s nothing wrong with needing a little extra help. Learning how to be a mom is a process, and you are the best mom for your child. 

  2. What if I never feel like myself again?

    Once you find a new routine in your new life, you will adjust. As with any significant life change, it may take some time to adapt to new circumstances. But that doesn’t mean you are stuck, and therapy can be instrumental in helping you find a new normal. 

  3. My relationship with my partner is stressed since having a baby. Is this normal?

    Studies show that two out of three couples report a decrease in marital satisfaction after the birth of a child. This is hardly surprising when you consider the sleepless nights, fatigue, and the increased responsibilities of raising a new baby. However, it doesn’t have to be the new normal.

    Perinatal or postpartum depression therapy can help you and your partner learn to divide tasks and communicate your needs so you can both get adequate rest and self-care. You and your partner may need time to adjust, and we would advise not making any rash decisions about your relationship in the first year of your new baby’s life. It’s a stressful time, and we can help both you and your partner learn to communicate your needs and be intentional about making time for each other. 

  4. What if my baby is over 1 and I am still struggling? Could this be postpartum depression?

    It is not uncommon to try to push through for as long as you can without seeking treatment. Unfortunately, too many parents don't seek treatment soon enough. The roots of your depression and anxiety can be rooted in the pregnancy/postpartum period and it doesn't matter how long it has been. If you are not feeling like yourself, a professional can help identify why you are struggling and how you can feel like yourself again.

  5. Can dads be diagnosed with postpartum depression or anxiety?

    Although seldom talked about, 1 in 10 men experiences paternal postpartum depression (PPD) after the birth of a child. If you or your partner are experiencing symptoms of perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, a postpartum therapist can help you find solutions in a safe space free from judgment.

At Thrive Postpartum, Couples and Family Therapy, we’ve been helping new and expecting parents understand and work through these concerns for years. We can help you as you learn to adjust to your new normal and alleviate fears about parenthood so you can take better care of yourself and your child.

Getting started

Our therapists are available seven days a week to help new and expecting mothers. To schedule an appointment, our team can be reached by text or phone at 224-698-9792. Alternatively you can also schedule an appointment online. We look forward to hearing from you.

If you are hearing or seeing things that others can’t, or if you experience periods of confusion, memory loss, or mania, please seek immediate medical attention. These may be signs of postpartum psychosis, a rare but serious treatable condition.

Eight signs your child may be struggling and how you can help

Eight signs your child may be struggling and how you can help

Children lack the experience, understanding and communication skills to express how their feeling – especially young, nonverbal children. As a result, the fear and uncertainty that your child may be experiencing can manifest itself in unhealthy ways which may be regarded as disobedience. Often times, your child is likely asking for help the only way they know how.

What are perinatal mood and anxiety disorders and do I have one?

What are perinatal mood and anxiety disorders and do I have one?

Many parents have heard of postpartum depression, but far fewer are aware that pregnancy and postpartum related mood and anxiety disorders can also include obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and panic disorder. As a result, some women don’t connect their change in mood or behavior with pregnancy or giving birth.