Another in a series intended to showcase our advocates and team members and their story in the arena of maternal mental health care.
LOS ANGELES, CA - Long before working in perinatal mental health, I was a clinician working with trauma - but because therapists and clinicians aren't regularly trained in maternal mental health, I was completely unaware and unprepared for the wallop of postpartum PTSD following the emergency c-section of my first child. Unfortunately, none of my care providers had MMH training themselves, and it took a lot of tears and my own research to figure out that my experience wasn't 'just new motherhood' as my OB/GYN called it. Through my own journey, I understood how awful it can be for new parents who do speak up, who do reach out and aren't met with support. And my heart broke for those families who don't even have the language to explain their experience. I knew I had to shift my focus as a clinician because no parent deserves to suffer nor to be dismissed - emotional distress should not be linked to new parenthood. In my private practice, I see aspiring or new parents and offer them the kind of trained and educated support that wasn't available for my own transition to motherhood.
Q: What compelled you to join the board of 2020 Mom?
A: The same experience that led me to support local moms in Los Angeles as a therapist, trainer and advocate, drove my desire to contribute to policy and advocacy for ALL moms on a national scale. 2020 Mom has always had a clear vision on what it means to engage in upstream policy change that would shift the needle for universal education of providers and universal screening for new parents. I joined the board in 2014, and have been beyond impressed at all the organization has accomplished since that time.
Q. Who or what are you inspired by right now – and why?
A: I am in awe of all the 2020 Mom Ambassadors, their tireless advocacy in their own communities is such a beacon of hope and so incredibly stigma-reducing for new parents who might be struggling. The 2020 Mom ambassadors are truly effecting grassroots change - and when I see the shifts in perception around maternal mental health they've inspired, I'm inspired myself to do more!
Q: 2020 Mom’s mission is to close the gaps in maternal mental health care. What’s your big hope for how 2020 Mom can fulfill this bold mission?
A: 2020 Mom has done such amazing and groundbreaking policy work in California, and we have several different maternal mental health policies in state that were directly a result of 2020 Mom's work. My big hope for 2020 Mom is that we can change the policies in ALL states so that perinatal mental health is a priority for hospitals, providers, and insurance using our work in California as the model.
Do you have a "My Why" story, about why you are going deep with 2020 Mom, that you'd like to share on our blog? If so click here.