Prenatal and Postpartum Body Image

"Birth is a rite of passage⁠—

a threshold crossing from one

identity to another.

Birth changes you.

There is no going back.

Only forward."

 

- Britta Bushnell

The prenatal and postpartum periods are full of a myriad of transitions— emotional, physiological, and relational. My longstanding interest and work with body image, fat liberation, and eating disorders provides a strong foundation to support birthing parents (both in the prenatal and postpartum stages) who are grappling with a changing body in the face of one of life’s biggest transitions. 

 

So much planning goes towards the preparation for birth and life with a new baby. Support around the changing body for the birthing parent is often limited, if nonexistent. Traditionally, prenatal appointments fill the calendars of expecting parents in the final weeks of pregnancy. Newborns are welcomed by initial appointments to support their emergence into the world. Postpartum people, left with changed bodies, new demands, and transformed identities must contend with their changing body and appetite in isolation. You do not have to navigate this alone.

 

Some of my client’s have longstanding challenges with food and body that become exacerbated throughout pregnancy and after birth. Many of my clients have experienced relative ease around food and body until the colossal shift of birth and parenthood rattle these relationships. Feelings of anxiety, fear, grief, and sadness often shape my client's prenatal and/or postpartum experiences. 

 

No matter how you have ended up here, your experience is worthy of being heard, affirmed, and supported.

 

My work counters and challenges social messaging that you need to "get your body back" post-baby. Our work together will help you (re)develop a greater alliance with your body so you can tune into your hunger, honor your needs, and bring a lens of neutrality to your body experience. 

The foundation of my therapeutic work is rooted in relational, psychodynamic, and social justice frameworks. In my work with pregnant and postpartum people I deeply value Health at Every Size®, Intuitive Eating, and Body Trust® to strengthen connection to the body. Sometimes, when shorter term coping strategies are useful, I introduce behavioral modalities, like Cognitive Behavior Therapy and Dialectical Behavior Therapy.