Tag Archives: postpartum depression

A New PMAD Handout

When we last revised Pregnancy, Childbirth and the Newborn, I struggled with including the list of all the risk factors for PMAD. It’s important information to have, and yet, I worry about someone who has a lot of those factors reading through it and getting more and more discouraged, and worried that there was no way they could avoid PMAD given their complex history. I wanted to find an approach that could empower rather than defeat.

Yesterday, I played around with a lot of metaphors…

  • a seesaw where the more risk factors you have, the more protective factors you need to balance them out
  • a budget metaphor
  • a fill the bucket metaphor where the risk factors drain the bucket
  • a floating object metaphor… if you have a lot weighing you down, you need a lot to buoy you up so you don’t feel like you’re drowning

Finally I found a metaphor I liked… I created a handout where I try out the baggage metaphor…. if you know you have a lot to carry, then you can plan ahead (pack it well), build your strength (by learning coping skills), get a luggage cart (learn about resources) and ask for help to carry it.

Here’s the free printable handout, feel free to use it any time, anywhere.

I also updated two other handouts: One on what you really need to buy for babies, and one on planning with your parenting partners how you’ll divide up responsibilities after the baby is born.

Support and Sanity Savers Handout

I’ve created so many resources over the years that I sometimes forget about some. I got an email today reminding me about this one I wrote back in 2003, with two other educators (Tawnya Ostrer and Jamie Olson)… I looked back and, you know, it’s pretty good! So, I updated it, and will share it here.

This is a handout to be used in a childbirth education class or with doula clients, which encourages expectant parents to plan ahead for practical support, emotional support, and peer support. It also includes a letter that they can give to friends or family members who ask how they can help.

Postpartum Support and Sanity Savers – PDF

Postpartum Support and Sanity Savers РWord (you are welcome to edit the document to substitute your local resources for the Seattle area resources I list. Otherwise, please use as written, with copyright info intact.)

And here’s a related handout to help them plan for a division of labor after birth:¬†Baby Care Plan