Happy Father's Day!
Whether you are a dad, a grandpa, a partner, a husband, a step-dad, or a dad-to-be, we hope this weekend is a time for you to feel appreciated for your role in your child's life. In the midst of a partner's (or your own) perinatal mood or anxiety disorder, there may not be the energy or mental space to celebrate you like we want to. But we truly see you and your relationship with your child, and we are so thankful for you and the role you play.
This month in our Parents Corner section, we feature a love letter to dads. We also highlight some new research about dads and perinatal mental health. Be sure to check our the wonderfully comprehensive list of resources specifically for dads, too.
To All the Super Dads
This isn't what either of us was expecting. We know it has been a huge adjustment for you, too. We feel your love and support through it all and want you to know that you are loved and supported, too. You are capable of so much, but we know sometimes you need a break, too. Please take a break when you need it. Blow off some steam. Do what you love to do. You deserve it.
New Dads and Postpartum Mental Health
Last year, to coincide with Father's Day, the British organization National Childbirth Trust (NCT) released results from a study that indicated that 38% of new fathers had concerns about their mental health. As well, 73% of new fathers were worried about their partner's mental health.
The group's Research and Evaluation Department conducted a longitudinal study of new parents' experiences during their child's first two years. Both men and women were invited to complete questionnaires at 6-9 months following the infant's birth, and again at 18-21 months.
The pressure of financial stress, relationship and lifestyle changes, increased workload at home, plus lack of sleep, can all affect a new father's mental health. All of these are issues familiar to women during the postpartum period, but there is less transparency about their effects specifically on fathers. In the words of Dr. Sarah McMullen, NCT Head of Research, "raising awareness of the specific concerns and questions that dads-to-be or new dads have is crucial. Dads sometimes feel uncomfortable about opening up about their feelings but we would encourage them to do so and seek the support they need."
For more information about NCT and the study, please see this link.
|RESOURCES FOR DADS
PSI offers a monthly chat for men.
This is a place where dads, partners, extended family members or other support people, and
professionals can find some answers and support from an expert and from other men.
Blogs and Online Resources
The Postpartum Dads website was created by PSI Dad
s Coordinator David Klinker as a forum to help
dads and families by providing firsthand information and guidance.
is a place for men with concerns about depression, anxiety, or other problems with
mood after the birth of a child. It promotes self-help, provides important information for fathers,
including a self-assessment for postpartum depression,
hosts an online forum for dads to talk to each
other, offers resources, gathers new information about men
s experiences postpartum, and--
helps fathers to beat the baby blues.
National Fatherhood Initiative
is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded in 1994 to reverse the trend
towards father absence. They accomplish their mission by education through public awareness, research, and other resources, as well as equipping fathers with resources, training, and technical assistance.
s mission is to provide support, education, and advocacy for father
s who are the
primary caregivers of their children.
s mission is to provide, facilitate and disseminate current research, proven and
innovative strategies that will encourage and strengthen fathers and families. They offer the following resources on their site:
- DadTalk Blog and "For Dads" corner, where dads can find tips, hints, and even deals
- "For Programs" where dads programs looking to get started or expand can find useful information
- A Library where you can find the latest research and policy on responsible fatherhood
Great Dad provides advice for dad and an online forum to connect to other dads--new, divorced, stay-at-
home dads and single dad--on parenting, pregnancy care, adoption, child care, and bringing up kids and
is a website about getting the most out of the time you spend with your children. It is intended to be a resource for all dads, but with a special emphasis on helping the non-resident fathers.
Includes ideas for activities to do, and projects to make together.
is the website of a father who believes that as women take a larger role in the working
world, he must shoulder his share of rearing the children and managing the household. Includes advice
on: children's health, child development, household management, and parenting tips.
is a website that provides advice, support, and resources for fathers.
Articles and Videos about Dads and Perinatal Mental Illness
Fathers Respond to Perinatal and Postpartum Mood and Anxiety Disorders
Babies Aloud are films designed to challenge stereotypes by reinforcing the notion of a balanced parental relationship which is fundamental to help the mother affected by postnatal depression to cope with the disorder and to make an effective recovery from it.
Seattle PEPS for Dads offers events geared toward new and expectant dads. At these events, dads get together for camaraderie and to hear an expert presenter deliver a short talk on a topic relevant to dads.
Q & A follows, and then time to hang with other new and expectant dads.
A group of 238 dads and counting who identify as the lead caretaker for their families. The group is free and all dads are welcome, regardless of age, baby
s age, sexual orientation, race, religion, etc. The group has a weekly meet-up format that includes a drop-in every Thursday, as well as family-
friendly activities that take place at different locations throughout the Seattle area.
This program offers Skills for New Dads classes at locations in Washington State, plus over 20 locations
nationwide. These classes help expectant and new fathers connect with their babies from Day One by
keeping their babies comfortable, and having a plan for
when everything goes wrong.
lasses and workshops that support
new dads and their babies as they discover their unique
and the importance of this father-to-baby bonding.
The mission of Bootcamp for New Dads
is that every child has a father that they can count on, no matter what.
They offer workshops in Everett and Puyallup and have some online resources available, including the
Dads Adventure magazine that you can download.
|UPCOMING EVENTS AND GROUPS
Perinatal Support Washington Events:
- Seattle Climb Out of the Darkness is June 18, starting at 10am at Maple Leaf Park in NE Seattle. PS-WA is spearheading the Seattle climb, which is part of the international event from Postpartum Progress that raises awareness of all types of PMADs. For more information and to register, see the Event page.
- New evening support group in Ballard. Life After Birth is a new drop-in group for pregnant and postpartum families. Tuesdays, 7pm - 9pm, starting June 21. Location: Muza Education Center, in the Olympic Medical Dental Building, 7715 24th Ave NW, 2nd Floor, Seattle. Click HERE for more information.
University of Washington is conducting a new study and recruiting for an upcoming mindfulness-based childbirth education program for pregnant women who have experienced sexual assault or abuse. Women receive weekly childbirth education sessions as well as individual mindfulness coaching, and the program is free of charge. Starts June 29, on the UW campus. Click HERE for more information.
GIVING TO PERINATAL SUPPORT WASHINGTON
Are you a Microsoft or King County Employee or spouse of one?
Please consider supporting us through your respective workplace giving programs. For King County employees, our code is 9187. Our tax ID is 91-1448669. If you are looking for us, be sure to check our old and new name if you don't see us-- we are there.
Warm line: 1-888-404-7763(PPMD)
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