Meeting your baby for the first time is love at first sight right? For many of us, this isn’t the case. Personally, meeting my son for the first time left me wondering what I was supposed to be feeling.
Whether this idea of instant love and connection is something you’ve learned from movies and tv shows or the stories shared by family and friends, it’s ok if that’s not your experience. In today’s episode of Yoga| Birth| Babies I speak with Bethany Warren, LCSW, PMH-C about bonding and attachment with your baby. Bethany shares many reasons why you may not feel connected to the “stranger” you’ve just been handed and how you can build attunement.
I hope that today’s conversation can reduce the guilt and shame so many parents have around these feelings and provide you tangible tools to develop attachment and bonding with your baby.
In this episode you will learn:
- Learn about Beth and what drew her to working with the perinatal community.
- What does attachment mean?
- What does a strong or healthy attachment look like?
- Is it common for a parent not to feel an instant or warm connection with their baby upon meeting them (via birth, adoption, surrogacy, etc.)?
- What are some of the reasons why a parent might experience a delay in bonding and connecting with their baby?
- Some ways that parents who find themselves struggling to connect with their baby can strengthening their bond?
- How perinatal mental health and/or reproductive trauma might impact bonding.
- Does having a perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (such as “postpartum depression”) mean that you might automatically not feel connected with your baby?
- Do you have to feel connected to your baby to be doing a “good job” parenting?
- How a parent’s childhood and attachment with their caregivers impact bonding with their baby.
- Handling childhood wounds that might become triggered as a parent.
- Resources to support parents wanting to strengthen their connection with baby, and/or heal from attachment wounds from childhood.
- One tip/piece of advice Beth offers new and expectant parents.
- Where you can find Beth’s work.
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- To find a Perinatal Mental Health Therapist: https://www.postpartum.net/
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- Circle of Security classes: https://www.circleofsecurityinternational.com/
- Beth’s book on Amazon (but please ask for it at a bookstore near you!)
- On Demand Infant Massage Class: https://prenatalyogacenter.thinkific.com/courses/Infant-massage
About Bethany Warren, LCSW, PMH-C:
Bethany (Beth) is a psychotherapist in private practice in San Diego, California. She specializes in reproductive mental health and has worked in this field for over 20 years. She is certified in EMDR therapy and Perinatal Mental Health, specializing in perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, birth trauma, pregnancy loss, and infertility. Beth is an EMDR consultant and facilitates EMDR trainings.
Beth has worked in both hospital and outpatient psychiatric settings and has led postpartum support groups for new mothers. Beth is a current member and previously served as the President of the Board of the Postpartum Health Alliance, a nonprofit organization in San Diego dedicated to promoting awareness of Perinatal Mental Health. She is the 2018 recipient of the Women in Leadership award from the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce.
Beth is a regular speaker and lecturer, and is regularly featured on podcasts and radio programs discussing perinatal mental health and trauma. She has written a new book, released in 2021, called the Pregnancy and Postpartum Mood Workbook, helping new parents navigate their emotions and build skills towards mental wellness through their journey of parenthood.
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