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The Storm of Intrusive Thoughts in Motherhood (trigger warning)


Many of us dream of the day we have a child of our own. We dream of their sweet cuddles, coos, and adorable giggles. Most of us never imagine the anxiety and fear that sometimes accompanies parenthood.


When are you experiencing anxiety sometimes it can lead to intrusive thoughts which are characteristic of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Intrusive thoughts are sudden scary thoughts or images that cause extreme fear in the person experiencing them. They mostly involve some harm coming to themselves, their baby, or someone else important to them. Sometimes these thoughts can be about you actually doing the harm to someone else. People in the postpartum period can experience intrusive thoughts for the first time in their lives. It can be a very scary experience. The good news is that this condition is highly treatable with therapy and usually medication.


In therapy you will learn that thoughts are just thoughts. A skilled therapist can teach you how to not fear these thoughts but come to accept them. When you stop assigning meaning to the thoughts then it takes some of the power away from them and they slowly become less. The human mind is complex and amazing and has the capability to think of all kinds of things. Thinking something doesn't make it truth. You might be afraid to tell someone about these types of thoughts because of their content. Please seek out a therapist who is trained in perinatal mental health as they understand what is going on and can help. You can find a therapist in your area who specializes in perinatal mental health at postpartum.net. All the therapists at my practice are trained to work with OCD during the perinatal period.

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