Your BIRTH Partners

Navigating Perinatal Mental Health in 2020

November 09, 2020 Season 1 Episode 9
Your BIRTH Partners
Navigating Perinatal Mental Health in 2020
Your BIRTH Partners
Navigating Perinatal Mental Health in 2020
Nov 09, 2020 Season 1 Episode 9

Perinatal mental healthcare deserves more of our attention as birth professionals, especially now in these unprecedented times.
Emily Souder, LCSW-C, PMH-C sheds light on this growing issue and shares her recommendations for addressing the concerns of those in our care.

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Show Notes Transcript

Perinatal mental healthcare deserves more of our attention as birth professionals, especially now in these unprecedented times.
Emily Souder, LCSW-C, PMH-C sheds light on this growing issue and shares her recommendations for addressing the concerns of those in our care.

Support the show (

Maggie, RNC-OB  0:05  
Welcome to Your BIRTH Partners. We're here to break down barriers and cultivate community as we discuss issues that impact pregnancy, birth and postpartum. We welcome you no matter what your background is, and are so excited to learn together. So today we are digging into a topic, perinatal mental health. And this is one that I think has often been just ignored or kind of push the side within birth care. And that is never Okay. And then adding in all of the complexities that 2020 has brought into our lives and brought to the forefront of our attention. We felt like it was the time to dive into this topic a little bit deeper. And to get an understanding of what we can do now as birth pros, to mitigate a little bit of the stresses that those in our care are feeling and to learn better tools that we can share, to ease some of this and make sure that we are tuning into mental health and well being just as much as we are turning into physical health. I'm really excited to welcome Emily Souder onto the podcast to dive into this topic with us, and to share some of her experience and recommendations. Onto the show!

Wonderful. Well, Emily, I am so glad you could join us on the podcast to talk about all this. And we would just love to introduce you to our listeners a little bit if you can just tell us about yourself.

Emily, PMH-C  1:39  
Sure, absolutely. My name is Emily Souder, and I am a licensed clinical social worker, I work as a licensed therapist. I'm certified in perinatal mental health. And in my other business, I'm also an intuitive guide and Reiki Master practitioner. So I have sort of these things going on at the same time. And I do a lot of time writing as well. But most of my time has been spent in the perinatal mental health space this year.

Maggie, RNC-OB  2:05  
Yeah, yeah, well, and I, obviously, there's, there's just so much happening right now that I'm sure that there is just a wealth of need for all those different services that you're providing. And I love how you stepped into them. I'd like to just kind of set the stage first by talking about kind of mental health as it fits into the perinatal scope. So in my background as a labor delivery nurse, and working most frequently in like hospital based practices, mental health often is best thought or kind of a bonus, even when we actually are really able to address it beyond kind of the role like getting report or reading someone's chart and seeing "Oh, they have a history of you know, mental health issue." It rarely, rarely, like comes up beyond that. And so I'd love to talk, if you want to speak to that idea of where do you think-Or why do you think that there is kind of this disconnect between the physical health of someone and then their, you know, emotional or mental well being?

Emily, PMH-C  3:01  
Yeah, I think that a lot of times, we still as providers have almost this idea that the mental wellness, wellness and the mental life of somebody has cut off sort of from the rest of their health and the rest of that picture of what wellness looks like for someone. And it's almost as though people have forgotten that all of those things are connected. And all of those things are worthwhile, because they all impact the other, you know, somebody's physical wellness can very easily impact their mental health and vice versa. So there's this loop that we forget, and we just sort of like cut off that connection. And it's a huge missed opportunity to be able to see people as a whole, you know, not only as themselves, but in the system and in the environment in which they exist. And that's just something that I think has a lot to do with the lens that I don't know, you know, perhaps training and perhaps the larger culture in which we find ourselves that there's not this. It's sort of like this forgotten idea that we are all these whole beings and that the mental health is part of that. And it's not a taboo thing to discuss. It's a really important and rich part of being well and healthy.

Maggie, RNC-OB  4:27  
Yeah, I do think obviously that taboo and the stigma, you know, certainly plays into it, I and I know, I myself can look back at times where I've been informed of someone who's in my care of, you know, a mental health issue that they've had in the past and I haven't really known how to broach the subject with them in a way that feels that you know, demonstrates my authentic, caring about wanting to make sure that all of them is well and not that I'm trying to pick apart their story or Ask them to share more of themselves than they actually want to and I think, at times, you know, during birth, there are so many different, you know, factors at play. And it can be really helpful to kind of understand as many of the different lenses that the person in our care kind of has. But we're also weighing that with this, obviously respect of their privacy, I am, for all other intents & purposes, a stranger, you know, to them. And so I do think it's sometimes it's kind of hard to want to respect their privacy and not pry, but also want to demonstrate that, like, I just really want to understand what is going on how you are actually doing in this moment really, like, not a fake, "I'm fine" answer. So that I can actually be, you know, supportive and caring and aware of that. And I don't know, if you have any kind of tips to share about navigating that within that kind of like a, it's a quick rapport building, not months and months of care.

Emily, PMH-C  5:56  
Right, exactly. And, and the truth is that, it will be easier to connect with some people and others. And that's because we're all bringing our own stuff into the space or the room with us, that's just, you know, how it is with human interaction, you know, and I think that if we find ourselves in a really warm place of curiosity, you know, just getting curious about the things that kind of make this person who they are in the room with you like, what they are looking to accomplish, and the things that matter to them, and the things that they either are able to do or not able to do based on how they're feeling really being a non judgmental space, and kind of even saying, you know, like, sometimes, you know, after having a baby, or sometimes when they're pregnant women have thoughts of for instance, as an example, scary thoughts, you know, of falling down the stairs with their baby, or seeing themselves seeing something awful happening. And if we normalize some of that meaning that give you know that we give people an opening to see that they're not the only ones who might be having some of these things come up. And that helps to make us a safe place to because a lot of times, you know, people don't want to be seen as crazy. They don't want to be seen as unfit to be with their kiddos, or like they don't, you know, they've just, they're not used to getting vulnerable in that way. So, kind of opening, setting the stage and saying, you know, it's something that a lot of people experience during, or after pregnancy, to, you know, have anxious feelings or have depressed feelings, and you won't feel like that forever. But it also sounds like, you know, you're really having a rough time or, you know, just really being an open space. I think open and non judgmental are the biggest two words and warm, you know, some people not in a fake warm way, but just like this open curiosity. I'm just thinking about so Karen Kleiman is a woman who she's a therapist who is in Philadelphia, and she started the Postpartum Stress Center, a really big pioneer in perinatal mental health. And I was just like answering this question. I'm thinking of her book. It's called The Art of Holding in Therapy. And it talks about how, you know, as, as therapists in particular, we hold space, but therapists aren't the only people to do that, you know, especially in the birth world. But we need to do it in a way that there's patience and non judgment. And just, yeah, I keep coming back to openness.

Maggie, RNC-OB  8:46  
Mm hmm. That's great. I'll have to I haven't heard of that book. I'll look into it. And I'll link it in the show notes for everyone listening so you can find easily. I do you think that that idea of like holding space is not something necessarily that our culture has valued, or that's something that we necessarily learn, I think we're just so often in a rush. And we kind of can be very, you know, solution oriented. And it's very hard for me, myself included, to pause and just be like, open and hearing and doing the act of listening without trying to jump ahead already to like, fixing it. I do feel like certainly for me, sometimes that hesitation to like start the conversation to get into it. It's because we don't have a solution to offer. And so we feel uncomfortable, if someone is open back to us and unloads all of these things that are going on for them that are that are really heavy, and that are not something we can just like, oh, let me go get you an ice pack...

Emily, PMH-C  9:41  
We can't we can't even fix it all the time. 

Maggie, RNC-OB  9:44  
Like I think that I think that stops us from doing anything because we then don't want to have that sense of being unhelpful, more not able to, you know, to take care of someone.

Emily, PMH-C  9:55  

Maggie, RNC-OB  9:56  
You know, one of the ways that we can as provider Just get more comfortable with that piece of not having the answer or the solution and just being there to hold space and, and then obviously, as appropriate giving referrals, you know, to therapists to people who can then help process it down the line.

Emily, PMH-C  10:14  
Absolutely. But a lot of it is practice. And some of us I'd say a lot of us aren't comfortable with pauses in speech or conversation, or, you know, even the idea of not being able to fix something not being able to have a specific, a specific idea, or a specific skill to teach or something like that, that can be so hard because like you said, we want to feel effective. We wanted like, that's our little like, I'm doing my job, I did this thing, I shared this skill, I taught this, you know, coping technique, and sometimes the value is just in the relationship. Sometimes the value that we offer is just in sitting with someone these days, virtually, or otherwise, to be able to hear their story, and not run away and hear the entirety of it in all of the stuff that some people will kind of, you know, just kind of dismiss, like, Oh, you know, but yeah, you had this, this upsetting thing happened during your birth experience, but you have a healthy baby. So, you know, who really cares? You know, we like being the person being the space to sit with the person, as they really say, and I feel traumatized. You know, yes, I have a healthy baby. And I feel traumatized, you know, like, so that we are, so there's value in that, that is still doing a job, you know,

Maggie, RNC-OB  11:45  
and that's a great point. Yeah, I do. I think we, again, we're just very quick to, to throw that like button on there and try to like wrap it up in a bow and just say like, but it's also fine. When the answer is often that like, it's not...

Emily, PMH-C  11:58  

Maggie, RNC-OB  11:59  
But it will be eventually. And there's things that you can do to work through that. That's really important, like distinction. And exactly, that is helpful, too, just to recognize that as, as its own gift that you can give someone is that just openness and accepting, and not trying to rush and make it make it right or force into processing. They're not ready to. So and then I I feel like this this time that we are existing in and we also are happened to be recording this on November 3. So it's Election Day here. And you know, there are just so many complicated dynamics at play this year, I think I mean, I feel like for almost anyone I've talked to of any age 2020 is certainly showing up to be just a year to try all yours. And so, you know, if you could speak a little bit to, to that and what you're seeing, you know, going on, and how we're kind of how we can kind of balance all those different layers of just stress and anxiety that's hitting everyone to different degrees.

Emily, PMH-C  13:02  
Yeah, and I will, I'll start by saying I don't have the one answer, because this is still so unprecedented. I think there's still so many things we're figuring out. And I will also speak to things that could be helpful. But just to start, you know, even baseline pre pandemic pre racial injustice, and recently I was in a presentation to that added on the third part about climate change and environmental injustice, as being a third aspect of things that are really going on right now. Bu pre-, pre all of these things are, you know, not that they just started, right, but pre pandemic, pregnancy and postpartum were things that could be challenging, they were things that can be challenging. Anyway, you know, because of because even pre pandemic, you know, our expectations don't always, you know, happen, parenting looks different than we thought it would, birth looks different than we thought it would. So they're already these things to grapple with. So that stuff is still coming up, that hasn't stopped. But there's it's two different degrees, because one of the things that's being really impacted is what our social support looks like, and how people are able to be supported in the postpartum period. So I would say that for the first couple months, so we think back to like mid March, when things started kind of shutting down and everybody was sort of in survival mode. Now, we're still in survival mode, but a lot of us are kind of like I'm in survival mode. And I've also recognized I need this sort of support. So things were relatively quiet in my therapy practice for the first couple months of, of people being, you know, social distancing and everything. And then it was like at the end of mid May, it was, when I started offering the group therapy group for people who have given birth during the pandemic. That was when people started, it was like something started picking up, there was this energy behind it. And almost like people were waking up out of that initial survival period and realizing, "Oh, my gosh, I'm feeling really hurt and upset by how things didn't go." And not only that, but I'm seeing ways I can connect with people, whether it's a therapist, or like a support group or something like that. And I apologize, because my kids are making all sorts of noise. This is just typical.

Maggie, RNC-OB  15:44  
Yeah, this is real, real live zoom life. Here we go.

Emily, PMH-C  15:48  
And I forgot to mention in the beginning, that I'm also a mother of a three year old and a newly today six year old, so

Maggie, RNC-OB  15:55  
and a happy birthday to them!

Emily, PMH-C  15:57  
so that's going on as well. But, you know, there was really just people had ideas about meeting up for, you know, coffee with their other new mom friend or their other new parent friend, and they had ideas of what that would look like, and what playdates would look like, or even just being able to, like chat over coffee, while their babies just, you know, played next to each other on a blanket or whatever, and, or their mom coming into town. And all of those things have been disrupted. So it's like, all of these little things coming together, and the not so little things, you know, several parents that I work with have had NICU stays, which looked, you know, again, baseline and NICU stay will be very upsetting. And now we're only one parent was able to be there at a time. And at least in the beginning. I think now, maybe there might be some different fields to correct me on that. But

Maggie, RNC-OB  16:53  
Yeah, obviously still, you know, place to place dependent, but I do, I'm hearing a lot more of kind of loosening back to kind of previous expectations around that now that there's just more, I think, more rapid testing, and yeah, better access to PPE and all those things that, you know, it's kind of give hospitals reassurance about working their way back to a more full visitation. Right.

Emily, PMH-C  17:13  
Yeah. But back, yeah, back in March and April and May, and like, there was just, you know, people weren't able to have the support that they envisioned that they thought they would have they planned for, because people might have really planned Well, for their support after, you know, that's one of the things we talked about, you know, when possible, you know, during pregnancy, thinking about who's going to be able to help with the logistical things, who's going to be able to help with the emotional support. And you could have done the best job with all of that, and then COVID happens. So. So there's there more layers of, you know, challenge and even trauma, because some of these things can occur to some of us is traumatic trauma is extremely relative. And I've definitely worked with several people who have had that sort of experience from all of this. And so what can we do with that? Well, you know, one of the things that I think is really important, is connecting in ways that we can finding if there is an online support or therapy group, because there's something about being in this cohort of other parents who are going through birthing and newborn and infant stage right now, there's something being with other people going through that that can be really powerful, even if it is a virtual connection. So you know, having having that interaction, you know, having distance movie nights with your sister, if she's around, you're able to do that having, you know, still signing up for things like meal trains, and having people do contactless drop off at your porch, if that's something that you're comfortable with. And, you know, having, if you have a partner that's helping you, you know, really finding ways to connect with them and be on the same page, you know, at least like a sort of, like weekly check in. I have one client who does a daily every morning with her husband, they have like a check in. But yeah, having something like that, too, can really help.

Maggie, RNC-OB  19:18  
Yeah, I think that that check integrated, because I do think there's something about, especially at the beginning, again, because this has been for such a long time that we've gone through all these different phases. But I do think it's easy, you feel like you're you're physically with people all the time. So you get that sense that they must understand what you're going through, because you're with them so much. And then, but there's still so much that gets lost and like you said, everyone's experiencing things in, you know, in different ways. And I think that's often you know, there's also a difference because of just hormones and experience, you know, between the birthing parent and you know, another partner and how they're perceiving everything that's happening and all these transitions, that definitely can you know, complicate that dynamic. And then I think when you are I've heard from a couple of people who, you know, had babies during this time that then there's just there's been a lot of extra pressure put on the non birthing parent to try to help meet all these needs that there is sometimes just because of, you know, personal comfort and safety, just there's physically no one else there to do it. That that's been a big strain on a lot of those relationships, you know, obviously, because then there's just that many more expectations that can't, can't be met by one other person.

Emily, PMH-C  20:29  
Exactly, yeah. And that's not sustainable, that's not sustainable, sustainable for them. Because even the non birthing partner has, you know, the wellness needs that they need to meet, you know, whether they, they need some time on their own, if they're an introvert, or just some time to breathe or get some movement in. And I think, you know, some things that people have done to kind of solve that is to be able to well either first of all, like bubble up with a family that they feel safe with, or make, take some risks that on balance. You know, for instance, like having a mom fly in from out of state, for instance, there's some risk involved, right. And when you balance it against the other stuff that's going on, when we're talking about mental health, and functioning and all of that, that stuff's really important too. So finding a balance that works for any given family, about how, you know, they can be best supported, because that's really important, too. 

Maggie, RNC-OB  21:40  
Yeah. And again, I feel like back to you, when we first started talking about that, I think, for us, as you know, birth pros, and when we're talking to you about this, so much of our, our experience in our training is very focused on that physical health piece of it. So it's easier for us to talk about, like, right safe hand washing and masks and taking care of all these things, you know, safety wise, related to our physical health around COVID. But we can sometimes kind of put those at a higher place, and they should be in comparison to our whole relative health. And so I do think it's important just to remember that like, right, there isn't this, you know, it's not a one size fits all, for each, you know, in each individual, each family, and that we can be comfortable speaking to some of those nuances, you know, with those that are in our care, instead of trying to have some, you know, hard party line, absolutely, you know, that public health wise versus individual health in the person we're taking care of, and what they actually need.

Emily, PMH-C  22:35  
Absolutely, yeah. And that, like I said, that's going to look different for everybody. And, you know, it doesn't have to be like, oh, we're gonna, you know, just throw out all the boundaries and throw it out all the you know, but, but finding, you know, I guess the ways that you can meet your needs, well, while taking on minimal risk, but ways to really, like have the biggest impact on the the mental health or the, the part of you that needs to be hugged by your mom, or your dad, or, you know, whoever, whatever, family member, whatever, friend, if it's a friend like that's like family, yeah, stuff really matters, you know, because we don't want it's not, you know, having a having a parent who has untreated depression or anxiety, etc. After baby's born impacts, how, how baby develops, and that relationship, so that's really important, too. So yeah, always thinking about it, like relative risk, and what is the balance here? And what? How can we make this work? Hmm. Yeah.

Maggie, RNC-OB  23:42  
I think the other piece of it that, you know, goes along, because there's just so many factors at play right now. I think in some ways, they're a piece of it felt like we're all going through the same things, you know, together. But then there's also huge differences in our lived experience, and you know, all these myriad of things that just differentiate how we can respond that based on our, our history and our relative resources. And so I think sometimes as, you know, birth pros on the side where we want to help someone out and relate to them. But we also don't want to minimize the differences in our experience or try to equate our experience to theirs. Can you speak to that a little bit and kind of how do we go through just all of these The, the try pandemics that are you know, happening right now?

Emily, PMH-C  24:35  
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. You know, I think, listening and validating and sort of, no matter what thing I hear you, and I believe you, you know, about somebody who's experienced not trying to talk them out of it, or, you know, put you know, look at the bright side, just like kind of thing I hear you and I believe you and I see what you're experiencing? At least, you know, I see what you're telling me. And really allowing them to just candidly, just authentically express that, without even putting yourself in it at first, you know, without even, you know, depending on the conversation, you know, if it's a back and forth, then, you know, maybe eventually get to you. But first focus on the person's experience, if somebody's sharing with you, somebody's telling you, like, really, like, ask them questions about it, you know, ask them questions about how they feel about this, or the things that they might be doing already to, to address it or just not even ask questions, but just to listen. And one of the things that I've seen people do, that I think is important to avoid is sort of competing, you know, about like, Oh, well, you have this going on, I have this going on. So you know, and just sort of this, like struggling enough, or whatever thing. Yeah, like, like one upping and saying, you know, and, and just really, before you even share about your own experience, making sure that what you say, honors the other person's experience first, and you might not understand it, but believing them that their story is true and valid, even if you don't know anything about it. You know, even if your history, your background, your upbringing, has given you nothing to relate to it, you can still relate to another human by hearing them. Yeah.

Maggie, RNC-OB  26:42  
And as I feel like we're all creating that kind of like authentic connection. And I do well, I do think that it is, it's great that there are so many, you know, different virtual experiences that are coming up. I do wonder sometimes just about like that, it's harder to get that sense that you're really like, tuned in, and that the person who you're talking to isn't distracted, just by again, just by everything else that's happening, kind of outside the screen. But it obviously seems like so much of our life will continue in these kind of virtual spaces. Predominantly, for now, do you have any kind of tips that you can give in terms of kind of like that, just that like kind of the zoom, just zoom fatigue, and that feeling of like not, it's feeling almost harder to engage that way, even though that might be what you really desperately need. I don't know, if you've seen kind of, or ways that what people can help to kind of create communities that actually allow for that kind of authentic sharing even within this.

Emily, PMH-C  27:39  
So, you know, I will note and just to completely, you know, hear what you're saying around like the zoom fatigue, because, you know, when I first started seeing like I even pre pandemic, I was seeing clients virtually not as much I was seeing some clients in their home. And and, you know, honestly, I probably will stay with this for the foreseeable future. There is there's something there's something depleting in a different way, about, about having the virtual presence now. I think part of it comes from, you know, sometimes a lot of the time I spend time looking at my webcam versus the other person, I go back and forth. But like, if I'm talking to somebody, like I'm talking to you right now, I'm looking at my webcam so that it looks like I'm looking like, I want you to feel like I'm looking at you. Right, right. And that, I mean, how often do we for an hour, so like my therapy sessions with clients are usually 60 minutes? How often do we spend 60 minutes or most of 60 minutes looking at one single point, like, on a and so that's just like thinking about physical strain when it comes to the other stuff. You know, I think that there's a whole range of what a lot of us need based on whether it's our love languages, or whether we identify as highly sensitive.  As a highly sensitive person, sometimes it helps me to have better energetic boundaries in the virtual space. Because, well, for the, for the simple reason that there you know, we're not in the same physical space together. And sometimes that helps with the energy transfer. Um, and with that said, sometimes there can be what feels like a lack of warmth, or something like that. So for people who, for people who, who experienced that, I think one thing that I found that helps me and it seems to be I've seen some of my clients do it too, or like I'll ask them to do it is like putting your hand on your heart while we're talking or something like that, because that really allows you to connect in with your body. Hmm. And, you know, feeling your physical body and connecting with your physical body during conversations is a way to, I think anything grounding is really helpful. Because there's something detached, right? There's something attached about this type of this way of interacting. And so I think that even though we might not be connecting with the other person in the same way, like whether it's a grounding visualization, which I do with my clients a lot, or it's this, like, you know, physical touch with your body, it can really help to sort of bring you back into your body from like, this virtual space.

Maggie, RNC-OB  30:51  
Now, that's really powerful. Obviously, I've been doing it here now as you'd like, set it in it is there is something about that, that it is it's grounding. And it does ground...

Emily, PMH-C  30:58  
It's so interesting.

Maggie, RNC-OB  31:01  
that energy and that sense of where you are, yes, exactly in space. That's great. And then, you know, as we're kind of wrapping up here, are there any particular resources that we can share with birthing folks if they are looking for, you know, whether it's therapists groups that, you know, places we can send people where they can find something like this? I know, some of these researchers still kind of new and it's hard to they're not as global as right, as some things.

Emily, PMH-C  31:29  
Right? Absolutely. The biggest one, without a doubt is Postpartum Support International, and that is I believe. They have so many online support groups, I mean for almost anything you can imagine. They also have managed speaking options as well. They also have, so there's a listing of therapists there. And you can check with whether they're certified in perinatal mental health or whatever whether they have experienced I mean, I'm assuming if they're listed on there at all, they have experience, right. And each state has at least one coordinator. I'm trying to I'm just thinking like word searching here. I think it's like, Support Coordinator or something, but it's the type of coordinator...

Maggie, RNC-OB  32:13  
 I do think they're called support coordinators, right? Yeah. Okay.

Emily, PMH-C  32:16  
Right. And so you can reach out to them, and they can start to get you connected with resources in your area. The great thing about the virtual, the more virtual support that we're offering now is that there you know, many areas in different states where there aren't people who specialize in perinatal mental health and so well, now you have access to these people. Because you know, even if you're I think Southern Maryland is one that might not have a time of perinatal mental health therapists, they're in that way, distance doesn't matter. Right. You know, you can work with somebody. So that's been really nice as far as increasing access. So Postpartum Support International. Not to give a plug for in another podcast, like I don't I certainly don't want to say

Maggie, RNC-OB  33:01  
Oh, no, absolutely!

Emily, PMH-C  33:02  
 So it's Mom & Mind is another podcast that's really wonderful talking about all sorts of topics when it comes to the perinatal period and mental wellness. I'm trying to think of others. I mean, I feel like I'm going to be thinking later, like, "Oh, I should have mentioned this." 

Maggie, RNC-OB  33:24  
That's ok, Emily, you could email me later, and I'll add them into the shownotes if anything else comes up?

Emily, PMH-C  33:30  
Oh, and also, the Loveland foundation is Rachel Cargle's organization. And do you know of it? Yes. Yeah. Yes. And they do therapy for black women and girls. And that's the organization that my therapy practice donates to, like, that's what we specifically give to. And, you know, so that's a really good resource. But I'll think I know that there are others, but PSI is a really, really great place to start. 

Maggie, RNC-OB  33:59  
Okay, great place to start. That is, that's perfect. That's great. I'll link all of that, you know, look around for some other resources to kind of help people, as we're just all, you know, navigating all this.  Is there anything else you'd like to kind of share with our audience on this, anything I didn't get a chance to touch on?

Emily, PMH-C  34:18  
The only thing I think I'll say, and I'm always a big advocate for birth story, reflection, but I feel like even now more than ever, that taking the time to do that is is really valuable. I think that having that space to think about particularly the work that I do with clients, when I use the guide that I wrote is around like, your inner experience of your birth experience. So I think that that's particularly important right now and can be really healing.

Maggie, RNC-OB  34:54  
That's beautiful. And we'll link to where people can get access to the guide so that they can work through that too. That's great.

Emily, PMH-C  34:59  

Maggie, RNC-OB  35:00  
Well, thank you, Emily so much. I really appreciate you just sharing all of your experience with us and helping us to think through how we can all kind of get through this time with just a little bit more health.

Emily, PMH-C  35:12  
Thank you so much for having me. It's been really fun to connect. really enjoy talking with you. Thank you.

Maggie, RNC-OB  35:20  
Thanks for tuning in. We love to talk birth, and we'd love to talk about with you. Please join the conversation by finding us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. We're Your BIRTH Partners across social media. And as always, we welcome your feedback. We would love to hear what is working for you as you navigate these really difficult times with those in your care. And we'd love to help you as you gain more resources around this issue. So don't forget to check out our show notes for information about organizations that truly support mental health during the perinatal period. We'll be sharing links to Emily's work around birth story processing, and a couple of other little tidbits in there for you. Wishing you all good health.  Till next time!