“Life is all about finding the calm amidst chaos”
Throughout their life cycle, women face a unique set of challenges. Puberty, adolescence, pregnancy, childbirth, social status, expectations at work, marriage, and relationships are just some of these complex issues.
Women take on the responsibility of looking after loved ones while managing their careers, striving to strike the right work-life balance. While they continue to be the primary caregivers for their children, they also provide an estimated 80 percent of caregiving for elders who are chronically ill.
Gender discrimination: Despite the focus on gender equality, at least four out of ten employed women have experienced workplace gender discrimination according to a recent survey. Compared to men, five times more women said they earned much less than the other gender for doing the same work. The other issues related to receiving less peer support, being treated as if they were incompetent, experiencing repeated slights and feeling isolated.
Violence and harassment: Surveys show that between 22 to 35 percent of women in the U.S. were sexually harassed at work. Every year, at least ten million women become victims of domestic violence. In the digital age, many women are also subject to online harassment of some kind that can involve physical threats, sexual harassment, stalking, offensive name-calling or sustained harassment over long periods of time.
Mid-life crisis: Women between 45-60 years could experience the all too common mid-life crisis even as they juggle physical health issues, commitments to older relatives, children, and work. Divorce, widowhood, financial stressors, menopausal issues are just some of the stressors in this phase of life.
Pressure to be a perfect parent: One of the most critical pressure points for women is their role as a parent. A large majority of women said they faced immense pressure to be a perfect, involved parent. There is also the added pressure they face to be physically attractive with the endless “perfect’ images of women put out on social media, leaving many overwhelmed with feelings of inadequacy, isolation, and anxiety.
Even before they give birth, expectant mothers are handed out innumerable tips and advice on how to give birth, feed the baby, foster healthy attachment, restructure the career and bring up the child. It comes as no surprise that 70% of new mothers polled in a survey felt the pressure of meeting various expectations on parenting while a majority were disappointed or ashamed with the way parenting actually was panning out.
Postpartum depression: Baby blues are all too common in the initial days after birth. Attributed to hormonal changes that accompany pregnancy and childbirth, mild depression is considered normal and disappears in about two weeks’ time. For some women, however, depression can linger beyond two weeks. Women who struggle with feelings of anxiety, worry, sadness or hopelessness for weeks or months could have postpartum depression (PPD). While being long-lasting, postpartum depression can severely affect the new mother’s quality of life and her ability to manage daily routines.
Typically, symptoms of PPD begin within the first few weeks post childbirth, but at times, these symptoms do not appear until several months after delivery.
Here are some of the common symptoms of postpartum depression:
- Feeling ‘blue’ or down all the time for several weeks or months
- Difficulty in bonding with the baby
- Feeling withdrawn or distant from family or friends
- Changes in sleeping or eating habits
- Feeling tired all the time
- Loss of enjoyment or interest in activities that were previously enjoyable
- Anger or irritability
- Excessive crying
- Panic attacks and anxiety
- Excessive worry or indifference towards your child
- Frightening thoughts or fear about hurting the baby
Get your life back with expert counseling and psychotherapy
No matter what stage of life you are in, it is important to know you are not alone in this fight and that expert help is available.
As Master’s level trained clinicians, we have extensively worked in Inpatient and Outpatient Behavioral Health settings, Maternal High Risk and Newborn Intensive Care Units for over three decades.
Having worked with and helped thousands of women develop coping skills to navigate challenges in various stages of life, we combine our extensive experience and empathy to bring about a meaningful, positive difference in the quality of life.
While we treat a vast array of women’s issues ranging from depression, life transition, mood instability, and behavioral health-related concerns, we specialize in counseling and psychotherapy for postpartum depression and specific issues related to pregnancy and childbirth.
My therapy is focused on removing the guilt, shame or anxiety related to motherhood, child birth, and parenting, enabling you to regain confidence and self-esteem while embarking on the parenthood journey.
The first step is to recognize that you may have postpartum depression and that it is a treatable condition.
If you believe you are going through post-partum depression or are experiencing stressful life events, get in touch with me right away.