Birth Trauma Resources
What is Birth Trauma?
A birth is defined as traumatic if the woman was or believed she or her baby was in danger of injury or death, and she felt helpless, out of control, or alone, and can occur at any point in labor and birth (Beck, 2004a). It is important to recognize that it is the woman’s perception that determines the diagnosis, whether or not clinical staff or caregivers agree.
This initial Traumatic Birth Prevention & Resource Guide is a preliminary collection of reflections written by many of the PATTCh Board members. The goal is to begin a conversation that explains the components of traumatic birth, increases awareness, and promotes prevention. Through multiple professional perspectives, our hope is to begin to shed light on the symptoms, risk factors, treatment and prevention of traumatic birth.
**Posted links and Facebook groups do not reflect affiliation or endorsement by PATTCh**
Helpful Resources for Parents
Virtual Support Groups
Postpartum Support International
Dancy International Support Groups
- Therapeutic Parent Podcast
- Birthful Podcast
- Healing Emotionally After a Traumatic Birth by Mia Hemstad (Takeaways For Moms)
- Psychological Trauma Regarding Birth and Helpful Responses
- Birth Crisis, by Sheila Kitzinger
- Cesarean Voices, by ICAN
- Cut, Stapled, and Mended: When One Woman Reclaimed Her Body and Gave Birth on Her Own Terms After Cesarean, by Roanna Rosewood
- Heal My PTSD, by Michele Rosenthal
- Rebounding from Childbirth: Toward Emotional Recovery, by Lynn Madsen
- Survivor Moms: Women's Stories of Birthing, Mothering and Healing after Sexual Abuse, by Mickey Sperlich, CPM, MA, and Julia Seng, PhD, CNM
- Transformed by Postpartum Depression: Women's Stories of Trauma and Growth, by Walker Karraa
- Traumatic Childbirth, by Cheryl Tatano Beck, Jeanne Watson Driscoll, and Sue Watson
- When Survivors Give Birth: Understanding and Healing the Effects of Early Sexual Abuse on Childbearing Women, by Penny Simkin and Phyllis Klaus
- When Birth is Traumatic, by local professional, Cynthia Good Mojab, MS, LMHCA, IBCLC, RLC, CATSM.
- The Impact of Traumatic Childbirth on Health through the Undermining of Breastfeeding, by Cynthia Good Mojab, MS, LMHCA, IBCLC, RLC, CATSM.
- The Truth About Traumatic Birth
Finding a Provider
- Postpartum Support International Provider Directory
- Dancy Perinatal Professional Referral
- Psychology Today: Find a perinatal therapist
- EMDR Provider Directory
- National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network
Finding a postpartum doula
Need help navigating accessing support?
- Together with Postpartum Support International, the Policy Center for Maternal Mental Health has developed a Maternal Mental Health Certificate Training for Mental Health and Clinical Professionals.
- The Massachusetts General Hospital Psychiatry Academy is an educational organization for psychiatrists, psychologists, other mental health professionals, and other healthcare professionals who diagnose and treat patients with mental health disorders.
- Postpartum Support International- The Perinatal Mental Health Certification Program
- American College of Nurse Midwives- Maternal Mental Health Certification
Mental Health Resources for Black Indigenous and People of Color
Birth Trauma Research & Resources
Trauma‐Informed Care during the Childbearing Year
By Mickey Sperlich, PhD, MSW, MA, CPM, Advisory Board Member, PATTCh
What to do during a traumatic labor and birth to reduce the likelihood of later Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
By Penny Simkin, PT, PATTCh Founding Member
Risk for Traumatic Birth for Women with Pre‐Existing PTSD
By Julia Seng, PhD, CNM, FAAN, Advisory Board Member, PATTCh
Trauma and Personal Growth: New Frontiers in Research
By Walker Karraa, MFA, MA, CD(DONA), Former PATTCh Board Member
Pre-Existing Risk Factors for PTSD and Childbirth
By Heidi Koss, MA, LMHC, Former PATTCh Board Member
No “Typical” Birth: NICU Experiences and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
By Leslie Butterfield, PhD, PATTCh President
Treatments Options for Trauma Survivors with PTSD
By Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, Ph.D., IBCLC, FAPA, PATTCh Board Member
10 Questions for a Partner of PTSD Survivor
by Walker Karraa, MFA, MA, CD(DONA), Former PATTCh Board Member