Our Women’s First Postpartum: Conquering Worry – Part 2

Our Women’s First Postpartum: Conquering Worry – Part 2

Excessive worries and why they show up

In Part 2 of Conquering Worry: Understanding Catastrophic Worry & Ways to Persevere by Nathaniel Valera, I will address the thoughts that sometimes lead to harmful consequences.

Any worry that goes beyond a common fear may be considered excessive. When unable to quiet the mind and the only thoughts that occur are negative, it disrupts your everyday life. Some of this disruption for Black women stems from the assumptions that are made about them. On top of that, if you constantly have negative thoughts about how you are perceived, it can cause even more destructive ideas.

I imagine these worries feeling much heavier once your tiny human arrives and you must care for them. When some are dealing with life’s circumstances and the newness of being a mother, it may lead to self-harm or harm to the baby. While it may seem extreme, it is more common than you think.

As someone who does not have any children, I do understand how these thoughts can creep in. Society is hypercritical of Black women’s roles, and awareness of this can weigh on you after a while. The mind is mighty powerful. Aside from the mind Valera explains, “When your thoughts become catastrophic, the only idea of motherhood an expecting mom could have is filled with challenges, threats, failures, and especially isolation.” According to Valera, excessive stress can appear as:

  • “What if we get into an accident when driving the baby home from the hospital?”
  • “I’ll never be a good mom, and my child will grow up with issues because of me.”
  • “What if my partner gets overwhelmed by the responsibility? They’ll surely leave us to suffer.”
  • “We’re never going to be able to afford everything our baby needs, and we’ll end up going broke!”

One may think these are everyday thoughts, but it’s not so much about how common they are, and more so, they are harmful. This type of thinking is unsafe for a new mother. Mainly because what you think profoundly affects how you live. Your thoughts become your reality.

Some feelings and thoughts go beyond baby blues, sadness, and anxiety. This is when postpartum depression has more than likely occurred.

Eventually, mothers experiencing these thoughts have to re-train their minds to believe that they are capable, and they got this! There are steps to accomplish and will be discussed in part three of this series. Stay tuned!!

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