Welcome to our updated website and new blog!!

We are so glad you are here!!

After months of planning and discussions (and endless cups of coffee!) we are delighted to announce the launch of our new blog, IMA’S BLOG.

As postpartum advocates, we understand like so few can- the pain, guilt, and shame you may be experiencing through your journey and recovery.

But we also know that with the right support and encouragement there is HOPE.

All of us here at Yad Rachel have been paying close attention for a long long time; always looking for opportunities to help new mothers, particularly after a perinatal mood disorder.

(By the way, you’ll be seeing those words a lot on our website- PERINATAL MOOD DISORDER. It simply means mood and or anxiety symptoms that can occur during pregnancy or up to a year after.)

We are on a mission to help liberate women of their suffering and eliminate the stigma.

We know the importance of the kind of quiet subtle help that clearly understands. Available, but not obvious. Discreet, but devoted.

And so, we heard your requests.

And are honoring your wishes.

Creating a safe forum for new mothers to meet and connect during the challenging times of being diagnosed with a perinatal mood disorder.

We hope that in this safe place you’ll find the validation and guidance that you deserve and need.

WELCOME TO THE “NO JUDGEMENT ZONE!!”

focus on the things you can change

So, here’s the plan for now:

We will G-D wiling posting a variety of articles. Some submitted by us, and some by visiting professionals and many by you.

Our goal is to give you a VOICE.

PPD can silence confidence, and diminish self-esteem. In this little corner of the big wide web, we want you to feel courageous and strong!!

By sharing, commenting or just reading, your part of a growing circle of moms just like YOU. That knowledge should empower you and all others affected by what can be a very lonely illness.

Be it by smartphone, iPad or computer; join us with a tap, swipe or click!  We don’t discriminate ;)

 BTW: Being that we are pretty new at all this, all of us here would love to hear your feedback. Any suggestions or ideas are completely welcome! We value your input, and want this to be a team effort.

Please guide us with ideas so that we can properly guide you with inspiration…

Reach us at:

Email blog@yadrachelnj.org

Telephone Hotline: 732-364-4IMA (462)     Office:  732-987-9343      Fax: 732-730-6952

When did this all begin???

Many years ago, in what was then a small community of Lakewood, a few persistent women saw a need to provide help to women who were suffering from PPD.  (Very discreetly they began guiding mothers through the then suffocating stigma of mental illness.) With no resources, practically zero information and almost no community support they persevered. Slowly, adamantly they researched, resourced and fundraised until they had enough knowledge, know-how and an egg nest of finances. Then these heroines started their holy work. Around an ordinary kitchen table, with nothing more than a phone line and a Rolodex of numbers, they took calls from those desperate seeking help. Each new mom was treated with compassion and dignity. They gave hours and hours of support, reassurance, references, sometimes even stepping into the home itself to do damage control until the initial storm subsided. With no recognition and very little fanfare they gave hope, comfort and most importantly restored women with the feeling of self-worth and respect. Escorting them to their first evaluation when needed. Coaching them through the diagnoses. Normalizing the process. Reassuring husbands and family members.

Word spread that there was hope and help, and the few calls turns to many, and many turned to dozens, and eventually leading to the 200 phone calls we get annually today.

Thanks to current media coverage, famous women  who have written books openly sharing their story, new mandatory hospital legislation, the stigma has somewhat lifted, and awareness has exploded.

BUT the statistics haven’t changed.

One in every eight women who are either pregnant or postpartum will have some form of a perinatal mood disorder.

So the efforts to educate, raise awareness, and provide help must continue.

Yad Rachel is now a full-fledged organization, providing many services (please see website) and still continuing their holy work, but no longer around a kitchen table.

As such, Yad Rachel needs YOUR support!!!

Surely you know someone who has been affected by a perinatal mood disorder. Or better yet, maybe u know someone who has been helped by us.

Please assist us in this vital mission that we all share: Helping moms help themselves.

If you are here because you are recovering from a perinatal mood disorder, we’d like to thank you for being the bravest, most beautiful, most courageous women we know. You inspire us and the work we do. Don’t give up, stay strong! This is not your fault, you are not to blame. There is hope. We promise that you will get better.

If you are here because you are a family member, or friend that is looking for the proper way to assist a loved one who is going through a rough time, we’d like to thank you for being a caring, considerate and thoughtful. Your support is vital in their recovery!!

your illness does not define you

 

 

TEN IMPORTANT TIPS TO CONSIDER:

1. If you think something is wrong, seek professional support. Do not blame yourself. This is not your fault! At least one in eight women experience postpartum depression and most have no history of mental illness of any kind.

2. Try to rest when your baby sleeps, if your mind is racing tell your doctor.

3. Try to eat well. If you have no appetite, tell your doctor or midwife. Avoid caffeine and alcohol.

4. Remember that good mothers make mistakes. Having PPD has nothing to do with your abilities as a mother. It is an illness that is treatable and you should be commended for seeking help. Try not to compare yourself to other mothers. Avoid people who make you feel bad.

5. Talk to someone you trust about your feelings. Confide in your husband and/or family. Let others know what they can do to help. Let someone help out with the baby or other children.

6. It’s okay to have negative feelings. Remember what it feels like to start a new job. It often takes any person 6 months to get used to a new role. Bonding can take time, and most mothers report a feeling of protectiveness but not love in the first 6 weeks. It will develop, bonding does not happen overnight.

7. It’s normal to start out with all bad days or with only a few good days. Soon the good days will outweigh the bad days. Allow yourself time to cry.

8. Stay on all medications you have been instructed to take. Studies show that most people will stop their meds within the first two weeks. Stick with it! It can take 4-6 weeks for antidepressants to take effect, talk to your doctor or pharmacist about this. There are medications that are considered relatively safe to take while breastfeeding. If you are concerned about breast feeding while you are on medication, contact your doctor.

9. Force yourself to walk every day for at least 30 minutes, studies show that exercise can be very effective on depression. Get some fresh air. Take a deep breath.

10. Join a parenting group. Find a support group or counselor that you feel comfortable with. If any of these groups don’t feel good, leave them. Trust your instincts. Tell your doctor how you feel.

Once in a while amidst all your bad days,no matter how you feel.

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