Mothers, Mothers-to-be, their Families and Friends

Pregnant women and new moms experience lots of emotions, many of them wonderful. But sometimes mothers and mothers-to-be are surprised when they have negative feelings as well. They may feel unhappy, depressed, or lonely. They may not be sure whether they are happy about being pregnant or being a mom. They may be stressed, afraid, worried, nervous or anxious about their situation or about the future. Some new mothers may feel guilty or confused about having these feelings. These emotions can be overwhelming, especially when mothers don’t know where to turn or how to talk about their feelings without feeling judged or embarrassed.

This page provides mothers, mothers-to-be, and their loved ones with more information about the feelings described above. These feelings may be symptoms of perinatal depression, or depression that occurs during and after pregnancy.




  • What is Perinatal Depression                              

  • How can a woman nurture herself during and after pregnancy? 

  • How can family and friends help a new mom who shows signs of being depressed?   

  • Where can I go for Help?   

  • Where can I find handouts, books or videos about perinatal depression?



 What is Perinatal Depression?



Perinatal depression is a term used to describe depression that occurs in women during or after pregnancy. Click on any of the links below to learn more about perinatal depression.


Frequently Asked Questions about Postpartum Depression

The National Women’s Health Information Center



Depression During and After Pregnancy; A Resource for Women, Their Families, and Friends

A free booklet produced by the the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration


Depression in Motherhood,, Kim Richardson, MA, LCPC


DPostnatal Depression, Changing Childbirth and Faltering Families, Professor John Cox on behalf of the Marce` Society


Recovering from Delivery

KidsHealth for Parents: The Nemour Foundation


Is it PND? The baby’s fine but how are you?

Postnatal Depression Support Association of South Africa


Professional and consumer education in English and Spanish supported by the National Institute of Mental Health.



Postpartum Information

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance


How can a woman nurture herself during and after pregnancy? 


New mothers may benefit from the advice below on taking care of themselves during and after pregnancy.

The Well-Mom Checklist

A list of several “to-do” items for new moms to help them get through the day in a healthy way.


Things You Can Do to Feel Better

A list of suggestions that may help women in their recovery from pregnancy-related depression.


Tools for Moms

One of the important things a mother can do for herself is to reach out to others who can help her: family, friends, other mothers, and others who can provide emotional support. When mothers don’t have close family or friends around them, they can still go looking for supportive relationships.



How can family and friends help a new mom who shows signs of being depressed?   


Sometimes new fathers, family members, and friends can see that a new mother is struggling and they’re not sure how to help. Learning about postpartum feelings and experiences can help a loved one to understand what a mother might be going through. The websites below offer several suggestions for dads, families and friends on how to be supportive of new mothers who are struggling:


Boot Camp for New Dads: Postpartum Depression

Information for new dads. Explains postpartum depression and includes a handout that suggests many ways a father can help his partner when she is suffering from postpartum depression.


Tips for Postpartum Partners

Information and suggestions for partners of mothers who are suffering from postpartum depression.


For Fathers and Families

WebMD has many articles for fathers and families with information about postpartum depression, it’s symptoms, treatment and prevention.


Where can I go for help? 




More resources and referrals to a wide range of health and human services in Cuyahoga County can also be found at First Call for Help.

Network of Care sponsored by Lorain County Board of Mental Health contains mental health information for providers and consumers as well as links to services.



Where can I find handouts, books or videos about perinatal depression?  

Handouts you can find on-line

Depression: What Every Woman Should Know

National Institute of Mental Health. Brochure can be ordered or printed from your computer.


Depression in Women

American Academy of Family Physicians. Click on “patient information handout” box in the upper right of the screen.


Taking Care of Both of You: Understanding Mood Changes after the Birth of your Baby

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance. Brochure.


Patient Information Sheet: Postpartum Depression

The Postpartum Stress Center, Rosemont, PA. Two-page handout.


For Mothers: Tips for Talking with a Health Care Provider about Postpartum Depression


Books and Videos about Perinatal Depression


Cuyahoga County Library On-Line

Find books or other materials on postpartum depression. Use the keyword search terms “pregnancy and depression” or “postpartum depression.”

Reading Lists


Video: Understanding Postpartum Depression

Video available for purchase. Sample clips from the video may be viewed.