PregnancyPatient & Families
Pregnancy can bring up a spectrum of emotions. Finding out that you’re pregnant can bring joy, dread, relief, fear, excitement, anxiety and more. Finding out that you’re not pregnant can echo a similar spectrum of emotions. How are you navigating the results of a pregnancy test?
Were there days, weeks, months, or years of efforts awaiting a pregnancy result? Is your emotional reaction what you thought it would be? Do you feel boxed into having the “expected” emotional response based on the outcome? Do you have someone to talk to about those unexpected feelings and the guilt for having them?
Do you have a support person or support system with whom to share news of a pregnancy? What does that internal dialogue look like if you don’t? How are you feeling about sharing this information with others? Are you bursting to tell someone or crippled with anxiety because of a history of miscarriage? Is it difficult to find the motivation to get out of bed or see people after reeling from the devastation of a negative pregnancy test?
What has the journey to pregnancy looked like? Has there been strain on the relationship due to infertility? Has sex become an obligation? Was there choice in the pregnancy? Was there intimate partner violence, abuse, infidelity, rape, incest?
Pregnancy is impactful to every aspect of our lives. How much of that impact are you able to experience with or process with others? In fact, pregnancy can be lonely. We can feel alone in our emotions. Even with incredible support systems, we can feel lonely.
It doesn’t have to be so lonely. In therapy, you can explore those emotions. You can verbalize the things that you fear may be met with unfavorable or judgmental reactions by even the best intentioned. In therapy you can examine your identity and how it’s changing during your pregnancy. You can learn communication skills to navigate relationship dynamics, preparing for changes in your professional life, and asserting concerns and questions for your health care. You can explore trauma and intergenerational patterns that may drive your fear about becoming a parent. Preparing for a baby is more than the doctor’s appointments, a gender reveal, genetic testing, baby showers, pregnancy classes and birth plans. Preparing for a baby is also about preparing you as a mom. Therapy can be a space that allows you to have consistent, undivided time with a caring professional who will guide you through what you’re feeling each step of the way.
Lauren Pena MFT, ATR, LMFT # 130687
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