An Open Letter to Postpartum Therapists Treating Women With Scary Thoughts

Women have been telling me, for almost 30 years, what they need, what they want, to help them recover. Most of what has been written in my books, came directly from their voices and their experiences. Postpartum women are very tuned in to what works, what doesn’t work, their sensibilities are often on hyper alert […]

Scary Thoughts. A Mother’s Worst Fear.

It has been described how one’s own mind can “try to torment you with the thoughts of whatever it is you consider to be the most inappropriate or awful thing you could do” (Baer).  Lee Baer, Ph.D., Harvard professor and author, describes how a person’s most vulnerable self can become engulfed by thoughts that cut […]

Talk About Your Postpartum Depression

We hear a lot about postpartum depression these days. What it is, what it isn’t. Not everyone agrees on the definitions, even healthcare providers demonstrate variable degrees of knowledge in this specialized field. If you are pregnant or if you recently have had a baby, and are not feeling well, try not to focus on […]

Are There Still Gaps in Screening?

Published on October 29, 2013 by Karen Kleiman, MSW, LCSW in PSYCHOLOGY TODAY This Isn’t What I Expected In healthcare or clinical settings where women are presumably in the care of providers who are well-equipped to provide relief, women who harbor scary thoughts remain reluctant to reveal what they are thinking.  When women are asked specifically if they […]

This Isn’t What I Expected: Prologue

Prologue by Karen Kleiman and Valerie Davis Raskin   When we wrote the first comprehensive guide for postpartum depression, This Isn’t What I Expected, almost two decades ago, we surely hoped that things would be different by now: mothers wouldn’t feel so much pressure to be perfect, the link between hormones and postpartum depression would be well […]

Talk About Postpartum Depression and Psychosis #ForMiriam

Every time a young mother and/or her child(ren) dies tragically, we rally to raise awareness. The media scrambles for experts who sometimes purport accurate explanations and sometimes they perpetuate misinformation. This is an occupational hazard that goes with the territory. No one would argue that raising awareness is exactly what we should be doing. Our […]

Postpartum Psychosis: What you might not know

Published in Psychology Today on October 6, 2013 by Karen Kleiman, MSW, LCSW in This Isn’t What I Expected When most people imagine someone with psychosis, thoughts of unbridled madness come to mind. What does that look like? How do you imagine insanity would reveal itself? Are you convinced you would be able to identify someone suffering from […]

The Indescribable Pain – Trigger alert

I thought some of you might relate to this poem. It was written years ago by the sister of an old friend of mine, a prolific poet.  Valerie and I originally found the poem, titled “Postpartum” when we first published “This Isn’t What I Expected” and used an excerpt from it as one of our […]

Moms and Children Are Still Dying: It’s time for everyone to get involved

I just hung up the phone with Randy Turner, reporter for the Winnipeg Free Press. Last week he wrote this piece, on the disappearance of 32-year old Lisa Gibson and the death of her two children, 2 year old Anna and 3 month old Nicholas.  On Friday, the news turned even more tragic when they […]

Maternal Awareness Month: Postpartum Scary Thoughts

    Last night I had the pleasure of speaking with Dr. Eric Heegaard (OBGYN) on his radio show, The Gyno Show, along with Krista Post, from the Postpartum Counseling Center. During the show, we discussed the universal nature of scary thoughts during the postpartum period.  Come listen! Click here to listen to the show. […]

Are We Paying Enough Attention To Postpartum Psychosis?

(This post is authored by a woman who survived postpartum psychosis and hoped her story could help others find the help they need to recover as quickly as possible.I sincerely thank her for her heartfelt and courageous contribution. ~kk) Let us start with the present. I am a happy, mentally healthy, physically healthy(ish), 31 year […]

New brief screening tool awaits further study

Here’s our the abstract for our paper on a new brief screening tool for postpartum distress (which includes anxiety measurement) YAY!!! J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2011 Mar 17. [Epub ahead of print]Development of a Brief Measure of Postpartum Distress. Allison KC, Wenzel A, Kleiman K, Sarwer DB. 1 University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine , […]

A Clinician’s Experience

Dear Karen: I am a licensed counselor working in the mental health field for the past 11 years. In February, 2010, I gave birth to my daughter. I had my first intrusive thoughts about harming her 36 hours later. My initial diagnosis was PPD, but that confused me because I was really not depressed, I […]

Why Women Don’t Tell

Find out what gets in the way and why some women are hesitant to talk about the way they are feeling: 7 Reasons Why Mothers Don’t Disclose Their Scary Thoughts Then, go to the Scary Thoughts FB page to discuss what might be getting in YOUR way.

Recent posts on Psychology Today: Are PPD Books Obsolete? Quieting Unwanted Thoughts: What works, what doesn’t work Finding Joy No One Talks About Scary Thoughts After Childbirth

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