When You Have a Baby
The first year of a child's life is intense for new mothers. They are overwhelmed, sleep deprived and anxious. Many have never held a newborn before bringing home their own. The mother may have concerns about the infant's development or how to parent an infant.
Support and counseling can help a mother transition more comfortably into motherhood while helping to ease her worries and allowing her to enjoy her baby more.
When You Have a Toddler
Toddlers are completely different from infants. Issues of limit setting become paramount. Power struggles around food, potty learning, or sleeping may ensue. Some children are hard to soothe. Some toddlers bite, hit or push. Others have strong wills and tantrum frequently. Many mothers (and fathers) need extra support and developmental information during this trying time. Sometimes sensory issues or difficult temperaments derail typical development. Parent support and information, and child-parent therapy can be crucial in helping the whole family find their balance.
When You Have a Preschooler
Preschoolers are busy finding their place in the world. They are testing the limits of their power. They are often experiencing irrational fears. Difficulties in making friends and separating from the parent makes it hard for some preschoolers to succeed at school. Unrecognized sensory issues and challenging temperaments may need to be addressed. Child-parent therapy, preschool consultation, individual play therapy and/or parent support and education can ease your concerns and reduce your child's symptoms.
Sometimes Dads Need Help Too
Mothers are not the only members of the family that run into trouble after the birth of a baby. Up to 10% of dads/partners can get depressed too. This is can be caused by lack of sleep, parenting or marriage struggles and/or feeling helpless in the face of an anxious or depressed mother. It can be difficult to reach out but dads can benefit from psychotherapy as well. Reaching out is an act of bravery and also an effective way to take care of your family. Dr. Buysse is happy to work with the whole family or refer dad to his own therapist.
Depression isn't always what you would expect. Aside from hopelessness and sadness, you might also be feeling:
- Unable to sleep
- Frustrated or short-tempered
- Reckless or impulsive
- Alone or cut off from others
- Tempted to spend time away from home
- Rejected by your wife
- Critical of yourself or others
What you might do that will NOT help:
- Deny that you are feeling bad or try to ignore feelings
- Hope that this will take care of itself in time
- Spend more time away from the house
- Withdraw from friends/family
- Drink or use drugs to regulate your emotions
What you can (and should!) do:
- Let others know how you are feeling.
- Contact a healthcare provider that you feel comfortable with.
- If you are interested in therapy, ask someone for a referral.
- Participate in sports or mild exercise.
Depression is a serious medical condition. It affects your your mood, your thoughts, and the physical health of your body. When you take care of yourself, every one in your family will feel better.