18 03, 2016

Better Body Image

By |2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00March 18th, 2016|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health, Mental Wellness|Tags: , , |1 Comment

Robin Kaplan, M.Ed., IBCLC, of the San Diego Breastfeeding Center, has been a wonderful influence in the lives of many, many San Diego women. She asked me to share some thoughts on how her clients can have better body image, especially after having a baby. In a guest post on her site I had fun sharing some of the latest research, my own thoughts, and referencing Elmo (the muppet.)

viewing body image after baby

I also got to pick the brains of therapist, Rachel Rabinor, and nutritionist, Lindsay Stenovec, and encourage women to subvert the dominant paradigm. I linked to A Beautiful Body Project, Jade Beall’s website sharing “truthful images & stories of women, their bodies, and their lives.” The […]

28 01, 2016

Abby on TV Today Explaining the New Depression Screen Recommendations

By |2018-02-28T21:09:27+00:00January 28th, 2016|Categories: Blog, Featured, Maternal Mental Health, Mental Wellness|Tags: , , , , , , , , |3 Comments

The United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) updated their 2009 recommendations on screening adults for depression on 1-26-16. In a report published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, they detail how ALL adults should routinely be screened for depression, and made particular mention throughout of the importance of screening pregnant and postpartum women.

I spoke with Fox 5 morning news anchor, Shally Zomorodi, this morning about what the recommendations mean.


This clip originally aired on Fox5 KSWB TV Morning News on 1-28-16 at 7:40am. Uploaded with the permission of the station.

So why is this news?

Live TV goes fast and something that I didn’t really get to explain is how big a deal this is. As JAMA explains, with the passing […]

13 01, 2016

Interview on Nutrition Instincts

By |2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00January 13th, 2016|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

As I mentioned briefly in my New Year’s Newsletter, Lindsay of Nutrition Instincts recently interviewed me about Postpartum Wellness.

Postpartum Wellness

Lindsay is a sweet individual as well as a registered dietitian nutritionist, certified eating disorder specialist and certified intuitive eating professional.

Here is a sample of the interview:

“Abby, can you share a little more about what you do and who you work with?

“Sure, psychotherapy, therapy and counseling are different ways of describing talking with a licensed professional for the purposes of bettering your life. I work with people from all walks of life, but I have a special place in my heart for women who are wanting to conceive, pregnant, postpartum, and parenting. For many parents, it becomes second nature […]

15 11, 2015

How to Prevent Postpartum Depression

By |2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00November 15th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health, Mental Wellness|Tags: , , , , , |0 Comments

The Ergobaby blog featured a recent article of mine on how to prevent PPD in both moms- and dads-to-be.

preventing postpartum depression

Please visit the Ergobaby blog to read the full article, including the difference between the “baby blues” and postpartum mental illness, easy steps to include in a postpartum plan, and how to know when to reach out for help.

8 09, 2015

Reframing Motherhood: The Photo That Doesn’t Get Posted

By |2017-05-10T15:13:43+00:00September 8th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |0 Comments

New moms don’t put sad pictures up on social media.

I was honored when Katie Contrera, a graduate student in the Science/Medical Writing program at Johns Hopkins University, reached out to me for a therapist’s perspective on Postpartum Depression. Chatting on the phone with her, I loved hearing her passion for reducing stigma around peripartum mental health through her writing. Like me, she was interested in the role of social media and it’s ability to connect us yet make us less social. Katie sent me a copy of her article after turning it in for class. It’s good. And I’m honored that she let me publish it here.

Breakfast_in_Bed_(1897)_by_Mary_Cassatt,_Huntington_Library

Reframing Motherhood: The photo that doesn’t get posted

By Katie Contrera

It’s Mother’s Day—and you […]

13 05, 2015

Fox 5 TV Appearance: Preventing Postpartum Depression

By |2018-02-28T21:09:50+00:00May 13th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health, Postpartum Health Alliance|Tags: , , , , , |8 Comments

Watch Abby talk on the morning news with Fox 5 morning anchor, Shally Zomorodi.

It was my privilege to talk a little about postpartum depression in moms and dads and how to prevent it. In case you missed it, watch below:

12 05, 2015

Chula’s Mission: Helping Girls without Mothers

By |2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00May 12th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health, Mental Wellness, Parenting|Tags: , , |2 Comments

My daughter and I had a unique opportunity this past Mother’s Day weekend. We received an invitation to attend a fundraiser called “Once Upon an Apron” for the non-profit Chula’s Mission. The mission of Chula’s Mission is mentoring and nurturing motherless girls. They provide free services to girls during the critical ages of 11- to 13-years-old. Services include cooking classes, grief counseling and mentoring. The idea of cooking classes really resonates with me, as cooking is part of my own personal self-care and a highlight of raising my daughters.

Chula's Mission San Diego

Scatena Daniels, a philanthropy-focused communications firm, extended the invitation, and was proud to sponsor the event, along with Brian Malarkey’s Green Acres and KyXy 96.5. I […]

23 04, 2015

May Campaign: Depression and Anxiety are the #1 Complication of Pregnancy and Postpartum

By |2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00April 23rd, 2015|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Did you know that depression and anxiety are the number one complication of pregnancy and postpartum? One in seven women suffer from either postpartum depression, postpartum anxiety or both. Symptoms can start either during the pregnancy, after, or last through both. Despite how common mental health symptoms are, many women are afraid to speak up and ask for help. Join me in reducing stigma and letting everyone know that it is okay to ask for help.

Postpartum Depression and Anxiety Affect 1 in 7 Women. Share and let moms know it is okay to ask for help!

The National Coalition for Maternal Mental Health (NCMMH), the California Maternal Mental Health Collaborative (2020 Mom’s Project), and San Diego’s Postpartum Health Alliance are partnering to raise […]

1 03, 2015

How to Get Involved with the Postpartum Health Alliance

By |2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00March 1st, 2015|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health, Postpartum Health Alliance|Tags: , |2 Comments

This coming Wednesday the Postpartum Health Alliance is hosting the Annual Meet and Greet at Gordon Biersch in Mission Valley. The happy hour is an opportunity to find out about how to get involved with PHA, chat with current members and meet the 2015 executive board. (Spoiler: Yes, I’m on the board this year.)

As my grandpa used to say, “Food is very unimportant,” (usually while going for a fourth or fifth helping.) The PHA will host heavy appetizers and there will be drinks available for purchase. I’ve also found the company to be friendly, diverse and interesting.

The Postpartum Health Alliance is a San Diego non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness about postpartum emotional disorders and providing support and treatment referrals to women and their families who are struggling with them.

We are a volunteer driven group and help is ALWAYS needed. Here […]

6 12, 2014

Why I Want to Look at My Phone Less around My Baby

By |2016-11-01T21:48:42+00:00December 6th, 2014|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health, Parenting, Postpartum Health Alliance|Tags: , , , , |6 Comments

I have found my New Year’s Resolution for 2015. I want to consciously avoid using my cell phone around my young children. Specifically, checking email, social media, and all those other things I do with my smart phone other than talk. My motivation is not fear of radiation. (Although I do have some concerns about radiation from cell phone use, especially around young brains, and have pre-ordered a SafeSleeve anti-radiation smart phone case.) My concern is being “checked out” and the pain it could cause my babies.

Screen Shot of Still Face Experiment

I recently watched a video of the 1975 “Still Face Experiment” by Dr. Edward Tronick. It was painful to see the baby’s distress at seeing her unresponsive mother. The mother is there physically, […]