#VoicesOfTherapy: Digging Deeper after Post-Partum Anxiety

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My therapy story is long.

My parents divorced when I was 2 years old, so therapy has always been the “norm” for me. Not that it was talked about much or normalized within my family unit, however, my sister and I were consistently in therapy at different stages in our lives.

When I was in high school, I was seeing a therapist to work through my peer relationships and to process my father’s terminal illness. My family was largely in denial that it was terminal, but the honesty and directness of my therapist at the time really resonated and pushed me towards being a therapist with an often direct, honest, and heart felt approach.

Fast forward years later, I had a baby. To me, nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Children end up in the NICU all of the time (so I thought). I began having intense intrusive thoughts and struggled with sleep because I was so anxious.

I began to discover this entire world of PMADs (Perinatal or postpartum mood and anxiety disorders) I had no idea existed. With the help of medication and therapy, I was able to sleep again and get back to somewhat “normal” functioning.

Then I had another baby.

Based on what I knew now, I was predisposed to having PPA (Post-Partum Anxiety) again. And sure enough, my irritability and intrusive thoughts with no sleep came back with a vengeance.

I again started participating in therapy and taking medication, which helped with the sleep and intrusive thoughts, but not the anxiety.

I decided to change up my therapist (who I had been seeing for over a year) to see if I could maybe dig into something deeper and different. Through this last year of therapy, I have learned so much more about codependency and the impact on my anxiety, relationships, and parenting style.

We are all works in progress, so I am not done with my journey, but I love where it is taking me!

–Allie Lieberman

Want to help others by sharing your therapy story? You can do so anonymously at http://bit.ly/voicesoftherapy.

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