Previa Alliance Podcast

Unveiling the Hidden Impact: How Trauma Shapes Motherhood

October 02, 2023 Previa Alliance Team Season 1 Episode 74
Previa Alliance Podcast
Unveiling the Hidden Impact: How Trauma Shapes Motherhood
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Join Sarah and Whitney as they delve deep into the profound and often hidden impact of trauma on motherhood, uncovering how past trauma can influence perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs). Explore the heightened risks, emotional triggers, and challenging symptoms that can emerge during pregnancy and the postpartum period. Discover the importance of recognizing past trauma and current abuse, and learn about the empowering role of healthcare providers and support networks in a mother's journey toward healing and resilience. This transformative conversation promises to reshape your understanding of maternal mental health and offer hope to those seeking recovery. Download now to unravel stories of strength, survival, and empowerment.

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Speaker 1:

Hey guys, welcome back to PreviewLine's Podcast. This is Sarah and Whitney. Okay, so one thing that we have yet to talk about Whitney that actually texted Whitney this other day and was like this is a great topic is how past trauma plays into mom's mental health.

Speaker 2:

Oh, there's so many connections, there's so many avenues we can take with this.

Speaker 1:

So here at PreviewLine we always ask the question when they onboard with us is if they have a history of physical or sexual abuse or if they're currently in a interpersonal violent situation, yeah, or in an abusive situation, and the thing is, it doesn't have to be your significant other, oh, yeah.

Speaker 2:

That is the abuser. It could still be a parent figure, it could be a sibling, it could be a boss, it could be a friend, it could be your significant other. But it is not exclusive to a significant other or a partner, because sometimes people think that, right, they're like. Well, I mean, that is kind of the default and that's appropriate, because I would say the majority of it does come from a couple scenario. Or even if it's your ex, it's still that scenario of a significant other or a partner, or your father of the baby. Even if you've broken up, they're still there. They could be a narcissist. So when we say abuse, we don't necessarily mean just physical abuse like you're getting hit or kicked, and not just sexual abuse. It could be the mental abuse that comes with that, these mind games of well, I don't know which version of this person I'm going to get today, or I'm walking around on eggshells around them, that hypervigilance of what's going to happen next, and so to tie that into a history of trauma or abuse, let's just say that your parents maybe were highly critical of you growing up, or they have very high expectations of you, or maybe they were the same way. They were narcissistic and abusive, or maybe they had a super short temper and you're like well, I don't know which version of my parents I'm going to get today. So there comes into play that hypervigilance that I'm on eggshells, I'm sitting on pins and needles. What's going to happen? I have to make sure I do everything and I have to do it just right. So that could be, honestly, a very direct correlation connection to, like postpartum OCD or postpartum anxiety. Of that I have to be aware, have to have to have to have to do everything perfect, because if I don't, we're going to have a very severe reaction.

Speaker 1:

And I think it goes back. My thoughts on this is just I think things that happen to us in our childhood or teenage years, if we've never fully processed that, if we've never went to therapy, if we've never took the steps to heal from that, we kind of just buckle down and move forward life. And then pregnancy, it all comes back. And I know a love is hormonal too, that happens.

Speaker 2:

But it's the fact that, like we are now responsible for another human being, and then we tend to maybe put those high expectations on ourselves which, okay, tailing on myself, okay, it's the podcast I'm allowed to tell myself Exactly. I can't do that in sessions. So with that, we do have these high expectations of I want to be a great mom, I want to be the best mom, I want to be a perfect mom. But there's also the heavy responsibility of I have to keep this child alive. And when they're babies, and even into the toddler years because my two and a half year old has some words she doesn't have a lot of words to really tell me what's going on when she's upset. Is all this? Am I getting it right or am I missing something? Have I failed them? So in comes to play that mom guilt because we haven't met our own high expectations and we put those high expectations on ourselves because that's what was put on us when we were growing up.

Speaker 1:

So abuse and trauma can mean a spectrum, correct?

Speaker 2:

Oh, absolutely so.

Speaker 1:

I mean it's from mental, physical, sexual, verbal that can happen to you emotional. Now there was actually a maternal fetal medicine. Like the high risk doctors, they did a study that found that female victims of domestic violence they have actually 40% increased risk of developing postpartum depression.

Speaker 2:

Oh, for sure.

Speaker 1:

Which to me it's like how could they not?

Speaker 2:

Exactly Because you're in an abusive I feel like this is a you know obvious moment, right.

Speaker 1:

And they're just. But they're saying also that postpartum depression is going to make your domestic violence worse, which if you already are, so if this person is violent towards you, abusive towards you, and then you become depressed or you become overly anxious or you're becoming OCD, whatever the reasons, and they're not treating you well when you're your baseline, they of course are going to make it worse.

Speaker 2:

Well, yeah, so let's think about this. So you already have an abusive relationship, and let's just say that it is with your significant other, because that's the majority.

Speaker 1:

It is the majority.

Speaker 2:

So let's just say that the baseline is that the abuse exists. Mom has her baby. Let's say that she does not have a traumatic birth. Okay, let's say she has routine labor and delivery, nothing traumatic, no stat C section, no failed epidural, nothing like that. So we have a non-traumatic birth. But we're bringing this newborn baby, who's up at least every two and a half to three hours. So we're throwing sleep deprivation on here, okay. So we're throwing that gas on the fire. So whether she's bottle or breastfeeding, she's getting up and doing that. So she's bearing the brunt of the newborn care. We will assume as much. So she's sleep deprived, she's assuming this mental load of motherhood that we have talked about.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

And so, of course, is she going to start to resent her partner because he's not as hands-on with the baby?

Speaker 1:

Of course, naturally, so I think you resent your partner, no matter what.

Speaker 2:

I mean, I'm sorry, but men have useless breasts, so this doesn't help.

Speaker 1:

I mean you do at some point. You just resent the fact that, like they don't have to carry the baby, Exactly, their body didn't change.

Speaker 2:

They're not recovering. They're not recovering. So even if we have a very good, non-traumatic delivery, we still have pain in our recovery. Yeah, let's start that out there. She's recovering physically. She's doing all the feeds, she's still maintaining the household, because bottles and you know all the things that come with it All the diaper changes. Yeah, the diaper changes, and you know, taking care of baby, the laundry that comes with the newborn, and all of those things that resentment builds and builds and builds. Let's just say she does at try to advocate for herself and it is not well received because we can assume as much. It won't be, it will not be. Let's just throw that out there. We can assume as much. So then he lashes out Well, then her postpartum depression starts to kick in because we have sleep deprivation, we have our hormone shift going on. We already have a very volatile environment at home. Naturally, she's going to become depressed. Well, guess what? Maybe she has the depression where she doesn't have much motivation.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Where it's hard for her to get out of bed.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Baby is still fed. Babies needs armet. Let me just say that it's not that she's failing the baby.

Speaker 1:

Is that she just has? No.

Speaker 2:

So she does the what we would assume, the minimum to keep her and baby alive, which is appropriate during that time. But maybe the dishwasher doesn't get unloaded.

Speaker 1:

And that sends them off, correct.

Speaker 2:

And it is this horrible vicious cycle and so often these moms don't feel like they can get out, or truly they can't get out, because they don't have the resources, they don't have the support system, they don't have the financial means Right, and because he's, more often than not, on the birth certificate guess what Parental rights are 50-50 until it goes to court and they say otherwise.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 2:

So because of that she doesn't feel like she can get away.

Speaker 1:

She feels trapped, and then you know when we're so. Pregnancy and postpartum research also tells us this, and you've seen it and your multiple views of this and your jobs is that you're more at risk for domestic violence during pregnancy and postpartum, and I think a lot of that is that you're very vulnerable, oh yeah, and you're just like physically and emotionally Mm-hmm. And then it's this person's child. Yeah, and they may or not have wanted this child.

Speaker 2:

Correct.

Speaker 1:

And I think a lot of that comes into play sometimes is that they didn't want that child. They're angry about it.

Speaker 2:

Or even if they didn't want, say, a second or third child, but maybe it happened sooner, mm-hmm. Then they had anticipated. Let's just say, your first child is six to nine months old.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

And you're pregnant again. So you're looking at two under two-ish, give or take a little bit, and he's like, well, that's not what we plan to do, and blah, blah. I'm sorry, sir.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

You also partook in having sex, and you knew that that could be a consequence or a result of it.

Speaker 1:

So and then I think you know the fact is is it's hard, especially if you're in this abusive relationship. You can't break that cycle. Now you have your pregnant, it people would think well, what you feel? Even more trapped, you feel even more trapped, mm-hmm. So if any of this is resonating with you, what do you say, whitney, to people who are going? This sounds like me.

Speaker 2:

So with that, I would tell you that your OB or OB's office is a safe place for you. It should be a safe place for you. You can ask them if they know of any resources, because I know when I did my first hospital of labor and delivery social work, I actually worked with mamas who had Medicaid is their form of insurance, and so I was used to having resources available for them, and one of those resources was giving them a nail file that had the name and number to a domestic violence shelter on there.

Speaker 1:

But it looked like a nail salon.

Speaker 2:

But it looked like a nail file. And so you know, if I, you know, hand her, let's just say like a handout plus a nail file, he's not going to pay attention to that nail file. That's not going to look like, oh, she slipped her some information. He's going to look at that piece of paper first.

Speaker 1:

Mm-hmm.

Speaker 2:

Not the nail file. And you can slip a nail file in your pocket, in your purse. It can be very discreet. So I would say, reach out to your OB's office, see if they know of any resources. If that office itself doesn't have resources, they should be able to get you in touch with a social worker within the hospital that they work with for deliveries and they should be able to link you with something, whether it be a shelter, whether it be financial resources to help with utility coverage, groceries, things of that nature, wic offices if you participate in WIC, that's another great option for you. And I will tell you, one great option would be just to call shelters in the area, see what their criteria is for admitting and then just kind of have that knowledge in the back of your head.

Speaker 1:

Right, I know in Tennessee my OB's office when you give a urine sample there's two different colors of lids, mm-hmm.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

So if you needed help, you put the black lid on Mm-hmm and it was a discreet way, because a lot of times in situations maybe you're supposed to ask and I know this from my nursing days you're supposed to ask before you ask any questions. Mm-hmm, do you mind if this person is there or there's actually-.

Speaker 2:

What do you want in the room with you?

Speaker 1:

But if they're with you and you know he's going to be very mad if I say that Mm-hmm. So some places even taken it that the mom has to come in first.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

And then you allow the and it's standard, which I think is great. I understand, and that the nail file would be a great way for OB offices, yeah, or pediatrician's offices, whoever.

Speaker 2:

Yes, absolutely. Whatever to give those little ways that that partner does not see you ask for help, and that's a really great thing I hadn't thought about, because more often than not, the partner is probably not going to be going to the pediatrician appointments because they're probably going to be at work. What have you? Most of the time, moms assume that responsibility and so even reaching out to the pediatrician because, while you are not the pediatrician's patient, the baby is, the child is yeah. And so the pediatrician can say that it was done for the child and not the mom. Yes, so that's. Another good resource is to reach out to the pediatrician no-transcript.

Speaker 1:

The domestic violence is. We've kind of covered that. What is it? You know, why does trauma? So let's say they've had a childhood trauma experience. They're not in a domestic, okay or a partnership history, but it's not current. Why does that put them at risk for maternal mental health? We're talking postpartum depression, during pregnancy depression, anxiety. Why does that appear back when we're like? I thought that was this part of my life.

Speaker 2:

So and again we'll kind of we're just gonna dig on this because I think it's a really good opportunity to do that, so we can have childhood trauma that can come from parents, relatives, things like that but let's just see that we don't experience childhood trauma or direct abuse from a caregiver or things like that. Let's just say we make it to adulthood Before we experience a trauma, because truly I can say that I was not in an abusive Same family, in an abusive setting, things of that nature. However, I do notice in myself anxiety, hypervigilance, some perfectionistics type things where I don't know I meet the criteria of OCD but I could meet the criteria of, like, an anxiety disorder and I'm like, where did this all come from?

Speaker 1:

because my parents, like you can't pinpoint it right. I mean they had expectations of me.

Speaker 2:

But it wasn't like how dare you make a bee on your report card? Right, you know what I mean, yeah it was like okay, like we know you slacked in science, you know not to bring home a D. Like you can at least make a C, yeah. So they had expectations for me, but it was not harsh. Mm-hmm so I started thinking back on it and I can actually pinpoint to my first social work job, mm-hmm, when I was doing foster care.

Speaker 1:

Mm-hmm.

Speaker 2:

I worked for an agency that we got cases contracted to us through DHR so we were kind of eyes and ears for DHR because in Alabama and things could have changed. It's been over a decade since I've done this job. Dhr only had to see the child one time a month Now, mind you, they probably have a caseload of like 30 to 40 children right they have massive caseloads. We had a caseload of about six to seven kids. However, we had to see each child once a week face to face and if they were brand new to the therapeutic foster care program. I had to see them three times a week.

Speaker 1:

Wow, okay.

Speaker 2:

So it was a lot Okay. We're talking like 60 plus hours a week driving all over God's green earth. Mm-hmm and I started thinking on it and it was because I had, you know, those expectations from the program itself where I was employed to Then DHR, then a judge, then a foster parent, then a biological parent, and I had to do that time seven, yeah, and I started realizing, oh, that's why I'm perfectionist, because because I tried to juggle all these things and there were some weeks, because again we're dealing with children who are in trauma, where it all hit the fan, yeah, and I couldn't do it and I got reprimanded because I couldn't meet this criteria, but it was for things that were out of my control, not because I was lazy right. And so my hyper vigilance, my perfectionism, my high self-imposed expectations comes from, the work comes from that. And I started to realize, oh, that has led to some co-dependency traits, when I would work in the hospitals, where I would overwork myself because I thought, well, they're gonna see my worth if I really give it up my all.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Well, I overdid it to myself. So as far as how that's played out into motherhood, it's I have these high expectations for myself.

Speaker 1:

Mm-hmm.

Speaker 2:

If I screw something up, I feel like I have failed my child.

Speaker 1:

When.

Speaker 2:

I most likely have not yeah you know, are my children fed clothed roof over their head? Yes, yeah their basic needs are met and they are thriving, mm-hmm. But if I feel like I dropped the ball on getting the date wrong for a birthday party, we all do it.

Speaker 1:

I I showed up to the wrong place at the wrong date before. Oh yeah, I mean.

Speaker 2:

Yeah I. I literally got my days wrong for a birthday party one time and I felt like the worst mom ever. Yeah my husband says well, I ended up, you know, having a great time with her because we went to chick-fil-a for lunch. And now she's like oh, I get to get my friend's birthday party tomorrow, like it's.

Speaker 1:

Same thing happened for us. It worked, you know it worked out. But in that moment you're just like why have I done? Yeah, and that you know, and it's in people like the guilt and I think people get, so I think you should have had an opportunity to deal with the work situation and how that was an unfair expectation, oh yeah, but you didn't get that chance.

Speaker 2:

Well, and let's also keep in perspective to my age, at the time that I worked, that I was 23, maybe 24. So I was a baby social worker, you know, and again it was. I felt like the expectation that was there and there was a lot of external expectations. So but again, how that has really translated into motherhood is I feel like I've got to get everything right, I've got to do all things perfectly, I've got to be all things to all people, I've got to have a clean house and I've got to make sure I get all the laundry done and put away and got to make. Sure, oh, did I pack her snack for school? And did I send extra clothes for my kid that's learning how to potty, train and yeah. Did I keep up with all these things? And if I drop the ball in one area, then I'm like well, great, there goes all of that.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so.

Speaker 2:

In place that perfectionism, high expectations and even hyper vigilance.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

You know, uh, oh, how. How badly is this gonna affect my kids? Yeah, so it's like I expect to them to have this big reaction because, let's be real, I have a toddler, so if you give her the wrong color cup, she might be in the floor crying.

Speaker 1:

Mm-hmm.

Speaker 2:

So I mean sometimes we don't know the response that we're going to get from the two-year-old. But I expect them to have this like heart crushing reaction, and they don't yeah. So past traumas, even whether it was childhood, teenage years in like, for me, becoming an adult, that's how it translates to motherhood. So let's go back to your original thing of childhood. Let's just say we did not have a physical or sexually abusive parents. It Okay. But let's just say our parents struggled with either some type of a substance abuse, whether it be alcoholism, pills, street drugs, what have you so? You never knew what influence that substance would have, how they would act to you Exactly. Are they going to be passed out in a chair and I'm going to be neglected?

Speaker 1:

emotionally, then for myself yes.

Speaker 2:

Exactly. Am I going to get neglected because of this? Are they going to be angry? Are they going to be throwing things? Yeah, so there comes in that hypervigilance.

Speaker 1:

That you have to control the situation.

Speaker 2:

Exactly, even though four year old, you Should not have ever had to deal with that, should never had to deal with that, but you can't. You're not responsible for how much of a substance your parents take in.

Speaker 1:

No.

Speaker 2:

You're not and you also can't control their response to that substance. But let's just, you know, let's kind of go down that rabbit hole a little bit and let's just say you have the parent, that passes out.

Speaker 1:

Wrong.

Speaker 2:

And you're four or five and you've got a sibling a couple of years younger than you, and your other parent works night shift. Then you're taking care of your sibling Exactly so at a very early age. You're being forced to grow up and become an adult at four or five.

Speaker 1:

And that can be the same of like. If you've had sexual abuse, you have to grow up. It's stole from you.

Speaker 2:

Yes, and so you feel like you have to grow up very quickly. So when we're parents, guess what? And come those high expectations that are not doable, they are not achievable. But then you also feel like, oh, I have to make sure I don't make the same mistakes my parents did.

Speaker 1:

And I don't want my kid to feel this or that or do be exposed, when you've just maybe put it in the past, your head, and then you see your child and you see that you're pregnant, and it comes back because what do you say? What forgets? But then something never does. The body keeps the score.

Speaker 2:

Yes, so when we do experience trauma, our brains naturally dissociate. So some people can say that they have like blacked out parts of their memory, like they skip years of their memory, and I'm not saying like you're two or three and it's spotty.

Speaker 1:

That's pretty developmentally appropriate because you're not going to be able to hang on. You're talking like teenage, adult years or like formative years.

Speaker 2:

I'm going to say even older childhood years like eight, nine, 10, like you should have some pretty core memories. But again, if you know that you come from that abusive background, you may be like I don't remember anything until I was 18 years old and I moved out.

Speaker 1:

That's key. But you know, even like my traumatic birth, there are sections I don't remember.

Speaker 2:

Now some I very vividly remember.

Speaker 1:

But there are sections post that that I don't recall.

Speaker 2:

And that's because our brain is trying to protect us by blacking that stuff out.

Speaker 1:

Now does that ever come. So when does it come back?

Speaker 2:

It can. So the thing is, our brain tries to like put it in a box and shove it to the side, because it's like we have to survive this moment. You go into fight or flight.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Think of it like that You're in fight or flight and so then the situation passes, okay, and you think, okay, I'm out of that now I've dealt with it. Whatever, I'm out of my parents' house, I have to deal with yelling, the screaming the alcohol, whatever. Well then you know, let's just say you're 25, 26, something like that and you have your own child and like non maliciously not in an addictive type of way, but your husband brings home maybe the same type of beer that your parents would drink and all of a sudden you're like oh my God. I remember one time when dad threw something against the wall or exactly triggers you. Yes, you may get a flash of a memory and you're like, and it kind of startles you and you feel frozen.

Speaker 1:

You know, I had those flashes. The same hospital that I delivered of will going back for. James during the pregnancy things. Sometimes I would have it and I would just be like I mean, I would just like, almost just like have to shake off my and just be like.

Speaker 2:

I've worked with moms who have experienced traumatic births and they love their OB and their OB did everything that they could in that moment to make the best out of a traumatic situation. But when they go in for an annual blood work, what have you? And they see that hospital, it's like, oh God, what's going to happen to me again? And like they get the heart racing. Yeah, they may get chills, they may get shortness of breath, like our physical, visceral reactions kick in because our brains like, oh, trauma happened there. I mean I like sending up the internal red flags of don't do it, don't do it, don't do it.

Speaker 1:

I don't like driving past it.

Speaker 2:

Still to be truthful, because it's a reminder of trauma.

Speaker 1:

It is in my body, but it was very. I remember telling Bill this. I was just like because there was a family member that was in a facility that stared at where the OB offices was. And I would go visit that person and I felt like the walls were caving in. I had to get out. But I said that to someone they're like. Why would you? feel that and I'm like it's trauma. I'm not, I would, equivalent to you know, I was a VA nurse for many years. Hearing the stories of the soldiers and the trauma of that area, yeah, it was. It's just fear for your life or fear of that situation. So if this is resonating with trauma, you're being triggered. What is the first thing you think someone should do to like start seeking help? I would personally try to find a therapist that either does EMDR therapy, which we've talked about before the podcast, but if you guys haven't listened to those episodes, I personally did EMDR therapy as a patient.

Speaker 2:

Very helpful.

Speaker 1:

Very helpful, very, very helpful. It is something it is something especially physical traumas, Physical traumas, yes, and it is something that you definitely need a therapist that is specialized in this.

Speaker 2:

Trained, certified, all the things Uh-huh. Another option is to find a therapist that specializes in PTSD.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

And one of the workbooks that I just I love this workbook which sounds weird for me to love something like this, but it's been so helpful for so many of my clients is there is this C-PTSD workbook and that is complex post-traumatic stress disorder workbook. Find a therapist that is willing to do that with you and I will say like, let's just say that you don't have the ability to get on with a therapist or whatever. You have a limitation, whether it be scheduling, finances, insurance, availability of therapist in the area. You can get that workbook off of Amazon and take it at your own pace. Yeah, that is something that I feel like is doable to do on your own.

Speaker 1:

Emdr is not no it's not, you have to have someone to do EMDR and guide you through that.

Speaker 2:

Voice journaling is another good way to get out of kind of that retraumatizing moment, to get that out and to feel like you're actually kind of processing it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Because a lot of times when we feel like we speak these things out, we're actually getting it out of us. Yeah, because, like we mentioned, the body keeps the score and this kind of ties into inner child stuff, which we've touched on a few times in here. When we talk about these traumas that we've experienced, our inner child finally feels validated and seen and that is where a lot of healing can take place.

Speaker 1:

Extreme I because I relate back to just the traumatic birth of Will that started this whole thing was. I think people talked at the situation and I talked at parts of the birth but I never started from start to finish, and once I did that with my therapist and then I did my own activities like you saying at home I processed it. Yeah, but I don't think I would have ever processed it if I didn't fully go through it.

Speaker 2:

Oh yeah.

Speaker 1:

But I didn't want to go through it, and that's the thing is like but who actually?

Speaker 2:

really wants to face that trauma and I will say this as a therapist, especially because I do inner child and internal family systems with a lot of clients we do have to be careful to not re traumatize or re trigger while trying to process this trauma. So I always tell my clients you know the first few sessions of inner child and internal family systems we're just trying to get you connected to those parts.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Because we actually do want to approach this very slightly. So you may not feel like you make a lot of progress in the first couple of sessions with that, but it's because I need to be very mindful of not re traumatizing. But if anything comes up that you're like I can't, I can't, I can't, and you have that bolt out of the room kind of feeling, then tell me and we get out of that. We get out of that meditation.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Because we don't want to re traumatize. You don't want therapy to be a place you get traumatized.

Speaker 1:

No, no, and so that's just why we so, if you're pregnant, know that the US task force recommendations are that if you have past trauma, physical, sexual, verbal, mental abuse or are currently in that situation, that is a qualifier for therapy. Yeah, okay, so that is recommended as a qualifier. Yeah, so you may be like, I think I'm fine. Yeah, this is research based. This is proven that you will benefit from therapy.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. So, if anything else, even if you don't necessarily walk away from a therapy session, having like this light bulb moment and it can take a while.

Speaker 1:

That's a thing that people think you're going to go to one therapy session and you'll be soft. That's not the case.

Speaker 2:

But you can feel lighter you can feel seen, you can feel heard and so you know, not every therapy session is that light bulb epiphany moment, but you need to be able to go to therapy so you feel seen, heard and validated and you have a safe space to get it out, because, especially if you've experienced childhood trauma, you probably can't talk to your family about it, or your parents, right, maybe even your siblings, depending on if there's manipulation present and things of that nature.

Speaker 1:

Because if it's happened to you and the family. There is a guarantee you're not the only person in that family that is having their trauma abuse issues, like you said, the ways and then a lot of times our partners are just not equipped to, they're not and it's not really their role to be our therapist and help us process and heal Correct. And when you put that on someone, yeah, it's asking a lot.

Speaker 2:

It's asking a lot and we're not asking you to like hide your trauma from your significant either, but don't necessarily look to them for the modalities to heal. They can be there for you. They can be a support for you. You can cry to them.

Speaker 1:

Go to therapy, though I present.

Speaker 2:

But therapy should be your safe space.

Speaker 1:

to get to the nitty-gritty and one thing I love about Whitney is Whitney always comes through with your coping tools skills and activities. So I think in some therapy sessions you may just be like I want to get it out with you, I want to vent, let's process this, and then some of it's like help me change my behavior Exactly, and that's, you can find a therapist that meshes with you.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, or sometimes, like I've had these sessions before with people, I'm like I'm doing X, y and Z behaviors and this is how I feel about it, and blah, blah, blah, blah. And I'll just look at them. I'm like, oh so, when your parents did something similar, is that how you felt when you were a child? And they were like, oh my God, I never knew that. And that is the light bulb moment of oh, this is channeling my inner child again. And so and I know inner child may sound like a very odd modality and until I got well-versed in it it was a very abstract concept to me. So I understand that it may feel abstract to you guys too, and that's okay. Never pursue something that you don't feel comfortable with.

Speaker 1:

Take that first step and find a therapist and see where that leads you, correct.

Speaker 2:

Trust their expertise.

Speaker 1:

We've said it before asking for help is not a sign of weakness, it's a sign of strength. And just note you do not have to live with this trauma, you don't have to live with abuse, you don't have to live with this and we're here for you, and you're not a bad mom if you are in an abusive relationship. No, you're not.

Speaker 2:

You are not a bad mom if you don't have the resources to get out.

Speaker 1:

No.

Speaker 2:

It is not your fault. You are being abused.

Speaker 1:

No, so that should be our ending. Just keep it in your heads. And there is like we said go to the OBs, go to your pediatricians.

Speaker 2:

If there's a hospital social worker that your OB office can connect you with they may have resources if they don't.

Speaker 1:

Know your domestic shelters. I know in Tennessee we had one on the VA property. Oh wow, so that it was a federal offense if they came on it. Oh wow. For restraining orders.

Speaker 2:

That's a very good system right there.

Speaker 1:

Very good setup. I think there's places like that too. So just know that. You know I know it does feel like the system's against you, but there is things that we can. We just got to empower ourselves. So we're here for you, guys. We hope this episode gives you some hope, and just know that we're always going to try to bring you this kind of information. We are here for you. All right, guys, till next time, see ya. Thank you.

Trauma's Impact on Mom's Mental Health
Postpartum Resentment and Domestic Violence
Impact of Childhood Trauma on Parenting
Healing Trauma and Finding Support