PPSM Baby Brain; Emotional Wellness in Pregnancy, Postpartum and Parenting

Infant mental health and Reflective Practice with Michelle Dineen, MSW, LICSW, IMH-E Specialist

August 30, 2022 Lindsey Hanka Season 2 Episode 6
PPSM Baby Brain; Emotional Wellness in Pregnancy, Postpartum and Parenting
Infant mental health and Reflective Practice with Michelle Dineen, MSW, LICSW, IMH-E Specialist
Show Notes Transcript


In this episode, Lindsey Hanka and Michelle Dineen discuss infant mental health, reflective practice and mental wellness for caregivers and children throughout the infant and early childhood phase of life.

 Michelle Dineen,  is a licensed clinical social worker with a specialty in infant mental health and reflective practice. She is passionate about helping others build their reflective skills. She has a private practice where she works with individuals and families, specializing in parenting stress and relationships. She is conveniently located in the south Minneapolis & St. Paul metro and is able to travel to any location.

Michelle is endorsed for culturally sensitive, relationship-focused practice promoting Infant Mental Health as an Infant Mental Health Specialist. She has over a decade of experience in a home visiting program for new parents. During her work she participated in reflective supervision/consultation individually and in multi-disciplinary groups. Since 2012, she has lead or co-lead reflective practice groups and provided individual reflective supervision. 

Additionally Michelle had the amazing opportunity to be a co-author and instructor for the University of Minnesota's CEED Center for Reflective Practice at the University of Minnesota. She co-authored RIOS™ 1: Using the RIOS™ Framework for Reflective Supervision and also authored one of CEED's self-study modules entitled, Wondering with a Purpose: Reflection in any Setting. 
*If you are interested in taking any of these courses please contact CEED Center for Reflective Practice.

http://mdineen.com/

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Speaker 1:

Hi, my name is Lindsay Hanka and I am the new host for PSMs baby brain podcast. I am so excited to be here with you all, but I am also very nervous <laugh> , which is why I just wanted to start this very first episode with a little note saying I'm nervous. Just throw it out there into the universe. This is a first for me. This is hard for me and I am excited and proud to be doing it. I hope that throughout this podcast, we explore wellness throughout pregnancy, postpartum and parenthood. I hope that we are able to have authentic conversations that inspire you and spark curiosity in you. And I hope that we're able to continue to learn together. Like I said, I've never done this before. So stay with me. There might be a lot more ums than I am comfortable with new to editing all of this brand new little nervewracking, but I think we're gonna have a lot of fun and I think we're gonna do some really important work together. Thank you all for being here and with that, let's jump right into the first episode. Hello. Hello. This is Lindsay and I am here with Michelle Dene . Uh , Michelle is a infant mental health therapist and a reflective consultant. Michelle, we are so excited to have you here on the podcast. Thank you for being here.

Speaker 2:

Thank you for having me. I'm excited to be here too.

Speaker 1:

So right outta the gates. I'm curious, you know, it was really fascinating to look at your practice and to look at your journey and I'm sure a lot of listeners , um, have a similar question that I have when I first , uh, looked into the work. You do it . What exactly is a mental health ? Um , an infant mental health therapist and a reflective consultant.

Speaker 2:

So an infant mental health therapist , um, in my own words is looking at the relationship between a caregiver and a child. So infant mental health takes , um, a big focus on the social and emotional wellbeing of a child and looking at the child themselves, the caregiver themselves, and also the space in between the caregiver and the child. And how is that working and , and what's happening there. And so it's a therapist who looks specifically at the relationship between the child and the parent, then a reflective consultant came out of infant mental health work. So people who work with infants and early child childhood end up being pretty emotionally provoked by things that are going on with kids and babies. And so what they found is that those professionals need, and probably other professionals too, but those professionals need somewhere to organize some of the feelings they might be having when they are supporting infants. So they might feel things either from their own childhood that they don't really have words for, or just what it's like to experience either stress around , um, babies and infants. And so reflective consultation is when you get together as professionals and process, some of the experiences that you're having in helping others. And so you're also looking at your own thoughts and feelings while you're exploring the thoughts and feelings of the people you're working with. And you're reflecting and hoping to get hoping to organize per your perspective, along with the other people in the room and just overall gaining a better understanding of humans.

Speaker 1:

That's fascinating. And so is that just so that I'm, I'm understanding this? So the work that you do as a reflective consultant is helping other mental health therapists kind of process the work that they're doing, or is it helping like your adult, caregiver, clients process, the work that they're doing?

Speaker 2:

So it's actually community members and businesses. And so public health who might be working with families in their home, it might be social service agencies. Some people have worked with the police and rescue people, anybody who's having like a really EV emotionally evocative work that is willing to sit down and think about how that's affecting them and how that impacts their work with people can hire a reflective consultant to come in. Usually about once a month for two hours to think about the stuff that you have to carry when you're a helper.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. Oh , that's so powerful. And I think so many people who are in the fields where they have that kind of exposure, they have a I'm, I'm , I'm a , I'm a labor and delivery nurse. And , um, you know, I , the nurses that I work around, they have like, they love their work. They love their patients. And sometimes it's such hard work. Um, and to be able to have an outlet where you're able to process that and care for yourself, the way that you care for others. Um, I mean, what a gift, that's how you, that's, how you prevent burnout. That's how you, yes . You have retention. Um, that's yeah. That's such important work. Thank you.

Speaker 2:

Yes. I have tried to, I have tried to work in hospitals. They can't haven't, it hasn't worked yet, but I know the nurses in hospitals have a profound knowledge and a profound coping strategy, and each individual has their own way of managing it and they have a lot to learn from each other . And so thinking about , um, being able to give space to any of that is really helpful for any kind of P profession that does that kind of emotional labor. And it truly ends up being when I'm working with people that reflective consultation space ends up being a professional development space, cuz it helps inform how you're gonna work with the people that you are caring for.

Speaker 1:

Oh , that's fascinating. Oh wow. Thank you for sharing that. That's great. Thank you for doing that work.

Speaker 2:

Yeah . So I ended up getting my bachelor's in psych at the university of nor Dame and then went to the university of Minnesota for my master's in social work. And while I was in my social work program, they had one unit on infant mental health. And at the time I had just had my baby while I was going through through the master's program, I had my own postpartum experience that didn't get the right support for. Um, and when they started talking about this, I realized there actually is a manual for how to think about and understand what babies need and what caregivers can do and what, what caregivers can think about. It's not just willynilly and trying to, you know, guide yourself through the darkness and you can, there's actually legit research out there that lets you know, what infant and young children need from their caregiver. And when I found that out, I just remember feeling such relief and such drive to let people know that you don't have to just kind of sort this out by yourself. There are decades of research that is out there. And um, so I made my own, my own independent study to try to figure out how to teach this to other people and how to think about it since then they have , um, a certificate program at the university of Minnesota in infant, in early childhood. And you, can I again get an endorsement , um, through some of those organizations that I had talked about earlier around infant mental health and become a specialist and having that kind of background and that kind of focus on our early relationships really gives you a depth of understanding of every other relationship that you have moving forward. And , um, it really helps organize things that didn't make sense for me and , um, help me help kind of guide me <laugh> in my parenting. Um, it's not, you know, knowledge is awesome, but practice is the, the real work, but um, it's been a kind of a cool journey.

Speaker 1:

I love that. Yeah. It's, it's pretty amazing when you , you said kinda like sifting through the darkness. I think that's, that's what you said, something along those lines or maybe that's how I interpreted it, cuz that's what it was like for me going through my own postpartum journey. Um, but it is really amazing what you're able to do when you have the tools. Um, and you can actually then just deal with what's going on versus all of this. Like what ifs and what else am I doing by not necessarily knowing what's going on. And so by being able to provide that, that education , um, those tools, those resources , um, you're able to make such a greater impact than just that caregiver. Um, and just that infant , um, cause it really does, like you were saying, it goes through all of the other relationships that you have. Uh , you're able to take a look at at them and see them in a different way. That's that's amazing.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. There's been some really great work that's been going on. And when I left my master's program, the job that I U I had was a home visitor, a home visitor for first time parents. And so any parent that had a certain number of risk factors, then we would co go in and we would visit with them every week. Their baby had to be under three months, it had to be their first baby. So it was a very preventative program. It was a program of you have not parented yet you are becoming the caregiver you wanna become. And what we found is there's a lot of people who know what they don't wanna do have zero clue what they wanna do or how to find that. And so being able to access the research that is out there and being able to give that to parents, for them to be able to decide their own parenting choices has really become my passion. And so after being , um, a home visitor and a supervisor in that program, I'm now doing therapy. And I really enjoy working with parents who are trying to sort that out as well. That same thing where they're looking to try to understand themselves as a different kind of person, once they've had a child and , um, trying to understand their per the person, their person, that their child is. And , um, it's been really an interesting journey for myself to be able to support and hear people's stories and , um, help them get to the relationship that they would like with their child.

Speaker 1:

That's powerful. I've got a question for you and , um, you know, feel free if, if it's, if it's off topic, but you alluded to your own journey , um, going through a postpartum in a master's program. I'm , I'm curious, how has the work that you do now influenced the way in which you look back on your own journey, if you're able to kind of like, has it, has it reshaped the way in which you think back to that experience or yeah. Can you share a little bit about that?

Speaker 2:

You know, it was really interesting is that I was doing so much of it while I was in school, that there was so much reflection even in the time that I was having it. I was surrounded by people who really meant well and, and had their own things. But it's funny. I can think of people who, who were almost working their own stuff out when they were around my baby or me and my baby. And I could see them kind of trying to do that. I had, I had the most interesting experience. My son was born six days before the semester started. And some teachers were like , uh, yeah, take care of yourself. And one teacher was like, no, you must be here. And I look back at like what that person must have also been responding to in their own experience and how that impacted me. And , um, it's pretty, it's pretty intense when I look back on it and the amount of information that I had, then I'm a little bumped out about, because when I did go into that class with my sixth day old baby, I didn't even have my baby on me. Like I had my baby in another room with caregivers. And nowadays there's so much more understanding of like, just strap that baby on you. Like, just take that baby with you. And I just remember trying to transition from a person who exists by themselves to a person who is responsible for another life and trying to do that in school and trying to understand, should I take a break or should I not? Or should I push through this ? Or, and you don't have a brain to do that. You don't people around you . Aren't really sure you're crying and you have no idea why, and you don't know if it's like normal or not, or yeah .

Speaker 1:

Is it school, is it postpartum or is it all part commercial?

Speaker 2:

I , who knows. And, and I just remember making it through, but I just, I wish I would've been able to tell myself it didn't have to be like that and there , and I just needed another brain or another, another person outside of my little cohort or my little group that was supporting me. I needed another person to be able to look in on this. And , um, you can take what you need at that time and you need, you can let it go that this teacher won't let you miss class. I don't know . It's so strange. The messaging was so, so interesting.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. And I think, you know, again, reflecting on my own, my own personal experiences and then working with other people who are in their first postpartum experience, it's so easy to just latch on to what someone is saying and to just go with that and just be flooded with doubt the whole way through. And that's where, again, I get excited about the work that you're doing is because you're not saying I'm gonna take you and you're gonna do all of these things. You're saying these , this is the different research that's available. These are tools. Let's try it, let's create this space, which is so different than you show up to class. You do this in my experience. It was, you know , um, no, you can't pump at that time because we've got a meeting there and like, it was like, oh, okay. I won't ask for anything that I need. <laugh> yeah , I'll just do what you say. Yeah . Um , and it really can change the way in which we , um, it changes the way that we parent and it changes the environment , um, for the infant, for sure. It continues throughout all the areas of our life. And so I think that's why your work is, is so powerful is because it's, it's giving back autonomy, which is really challenging to feel like you have when you're pregnant and then you then have a, a baby and you've got this whole body that's just, was just, you know, was just pregnant. And so it's really hard to feel like you're your own when you were so connected to this other human for so long. So I think it's really outstanding

Speaker 2:

And there's a , an amazing ex transition that's happening in caregivers when they are becoming parents. And I don't know that we honor that as much, or we talk about that as much about just the idea of, and the shift in your world. I even am fascinated by the shift that happens with grandparents and what happens when they're, they are becoming grandparents. Cuz I think there's a whole thing that goes on then . And it is a , it is a big shift for a family and I think some people honor it and do it really well and some cultures and um, people know how and, and know how to give it the honor that it does. I don't come from those places. And um, and so just starting to give people other options or ideas or ways that things could go outside of their own experiences. Um , I , I like, I like exploring that with people.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. We have some really great examples around the world of how to grow a family , um, how to start a family and we have some great examples of what not to do. I think some of the things I did was certainly in the not to do realm of <laugh> , but you know, unlearning , um, unlearning, a lot of that I think is, is really empowering as well. But yeah. How fun to be able to explore those options and to get people's minds, to think beyond maybe the experience they had as a child or maybe what they saw on TV or whatever it might be, wherever these ideas that we get of how things should be, how they should go. Yeah . That's, that's really wonderful. I'm curious, you were doing visits at home. Um , for first time parents under three months of age, how did you transition from that into the practice that you have now and what were some of the biggest surprises? Yeah. Uh , either exciting surprises or oh , roadblock surprises that came your way as you kind of evolved into the role you're in now.

Speaker 2:

I think one of the surprises is maybe that the, the work was really, really awesome when I was a home visitor, because I was able to go into people's homes and sit with them and sitting in a house, just watching a baby and connecting with a family. That way was just very, very cool. When I moved into my work as a therapist, I got really nervous about, can I do this? This feels so different, blah, blah, blah. And I think I was surprised how familiar it felt to sit with parents and think about their babies. Um, sit with parents and think about themselves. And then it didn't seem like as big of a shift, it still was listening to people's stories, sharing with them, what I knew and then thinking about it together and how did that fit for them or not. And I think just letting, letting people know and letting parents know caregivers know they don't have to be by themselves in this. They don't have to be making up something or floundering in it that there's, there's some really good direction information and how to try to make that easily accessible to people. I think some of, I think there's mental health is a really, I don't know , there's a barrier in that it's hard to access. It's expensive childcare , tele therapy is making things a little bit more accessible, but it still can be limiting for people. And so that's one thing that I've been thinking about a lot is how to keep letting people know or figuring out ways for people to know what is all out there and what kind of information is out there so that they just don't have to be by themselves or alone or

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Kinda lost.

Speaker 1:

So yeah. Do you feel like there's like a sense of like, people need to do it alone? Like you should be able to figure this out by yourself. Do you think that there's, that that comes into play at all? Um,

Speaker 2:

Oh, I , I do. I think, yeah . Oh , at least in the culture I come from or the, the people I know, I think it's, I think there's an expectation on, on caregivers that way. Um , I'm hoping it's changing. It's definitely changing for myself, but that's been a journey and I'm, I've been a mom for a long time. And so I don't know why that's shifted for me or how or what it's like for people becoming parents right now. Yeah . Um, but I , I know that that's how I felt like this is my job. This is the thing I'm supposed to do. I knew I always wanted to be a mom. So I asked for it. I don't know .

Speaker 1:

<laugh> yeah, I, yeah, no, that was that . The reason I ask is, I mean, hopefully it resonates with other people, but really it's just selfish cuz that was <laugh> I'm just curious for my own sake cuz you know, my, my oldest is seven. Uh , and I remember, you know, just a preface. I, I , I had , uh, postpartum anxiety and ultimately postpartum O C D that did not get diagnosed until I , uh, was pregnant with my second. And we just kind of working through it with my , um, with my care team and we kind of found like, oh, that's not normal. Oh, intrusive thoughts, not so great. Oh, okay. I thought that was everyone. And I really, I had this idea of it is important for me to be able to do this all by myself and help is a nice thing, but I shouldn't need it. Um, I should be able to be fully competent , um, because that's what makes me a good mom and I wanted to be a mom. I tried hard to be a mom. And so to finally get to that point where I had my son, I had to, yeah. I guess continuing to prove myself was by being able to do it on my own. And then I got to reclaim that with my second, by just asking for help in a variety of different ways and the way in which I showed up for my, for my family was by receiving help. And that was a hard switch to make.

Speaker 2:

And I remember having a lot of help. Yeah . But I still had that feeling. Yeah. I even remember, you know, even when you get help or you have , but something just doesn't feel right. Or it feels, I, I still remember really struggling and I had a lot of help. Like <laugh> , I think it's a mental game too. Um, yeah. Yeah . So I do, I , I think, I think challenging some of that stuff, having someone else there to challenge some of that to even see or notice that you're doing that to yourself. I think that's sometimes one of the tricks cuz maybe we don't even know or we're not even aware that we're challenge , we're having this unrealistic expectation and what is our mind doing to us and how is it talking and how are we talking to ourselves ?

Speaker 1:

Yeah . I feel like so, so much of the work in mental health is about having a really safe environment to look in the mirror , um, and to just kind of evaluate without judgment. But with the sense of an opportunity, you know , this is an opportunity to go in a different path. This is an opportunity to change something, to grow something. Uh , and that's where really great , uh, mental health providers are able to provide that mirror in a safe environment. <laugh> you know , um, so I think that's, that's really special that you're able to do that and impact the whole family in that way. Yeah.

Speaker 2:

I, I feel really strongly right now in my own journey of what is mental health and how to do this is finding, finding places to safely practice feeling all the feels . So when we get to have the opportunities to safely feel sadness in the transition of to motherhood or the, just even finding more words for what we're feeling, I just I'm reading Brene Brown's book , um, Atlas of the heart. And she's letting us know that the average number of feeling words a family has and a person has is three, which strongly affects how we see the , the world. And so I didn't grow up with a whole bunch of feeling words. Apparently there's a whole bunch of 'em three is not the number of how many feeling words there are. And so being able to even practice and organize what you are feeling and that it's, it might have a different word associated with it and that might change your perception of what's going on. And that might be your aha and help you organize how you're feeling and that practice of being able to do that for yourself, gives you this awesome skill to be able to do that for your kid and your kid needing to know how they're feeling and having a word for it is pretty powerful.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. That's I mean, I just think that's profound. And again, I think about like the cycle and I think about the whole family unit, right? We learn so much from our parents and as parents, we learn so much from our children and it's this beautiful cycle. And if we can create that environment, we can be teaching each other at the same time and yeah. Expanding beyond three words. Um <laugh> as a family unit, which is, which is so key. Yeah. I , I had a similar experience growing up. I , I didn't, I didn't have many words <laugh> um , so I'm learning them, I'm learning them now, which is good, you know ?

Speaker 2:

Yeah . And it's kind of cool. Yeah . Cool to know what what's out there and how, how big and BA our feelings are.

Speaker 1:

Ah , it's wild. Yeah. It's , it's pretty profound. I'm curious. So like thinking about mental health and you mentioned, you know, the need for safe space and the need to be able to feel all the feels . So where do you think, where do you think we are right now? And I'm not to like throw COVID into it, but to throw COVID into it. I feel like the work that I've done with PSM, it it's very clear that COVID has made a significant impact in the way in which mental health is being cared for and not cared for the resources that are available at least in, in my local community here in Minnesota. Uh , and I'm just, I'm just curious, you mentioned telehealth, but what are some of the ways in which you think that COVID has impacted mental health and where can we take that and go in mental health? If that makes sense, if it doesn't, I might be rambling

Speaker 2:

<laugh> well, I don't know for sure. So it's just my anecdotal look at things. People are talking about mental health. Like they haven't in a long time . So I guess for me, I'm seeing a lot more people willing to go seek it, looking for it, which I don't know. Does that mean there's more challenges right now to people's mental health or does it mean that people are actually feeling like there's a good reason to go? And even though they maybe have thought about it years before, I think COVID was an amazing time to live through. I'm so fascinated to hear what we learn and what we understand about it, how we're coming out of it, what's happening, what kind of interruptions were there to , um, development and what kind of realizations do we have about our need for social connections? And so I'm , I'm fascinated to see what we learned from this super sad about where people are, because I think I, myself keep describing it as COVID was this smelly room that we just held so much in our bodies about how we were feeling about the experience. And then we just held it for two years. Yeah . And it got heavier, but we stopped smelling the smell and we were still in the stinky room or the stinky room got worse. And then we got used to that stink. So I were still in it. We're still wondering how it's gonna go in the fall. We're still so tired of trying to figure out questions that we never had to figure out before. And a lot of people are seeking mental health and what I'm finding is they're not finding it. Yeah. And there's long wait lists , especially for kids. Um, people who serve people in mental health fields are trying to figure out the balance so much craziness with how to get services, who can get services even for , um, therapists. I'm hearing, they're struggling to get recognized by insurances cause the field is too saturated, but nobody can get in. And so I , it just sounds like something's gonna have to give or switch or move some way . And , um, at the same time I'm hearing a lot of people getting some of their mental health information off of social media. Some of it really great. Some of it kind of funny, I don't know. Yeah. So I'm, I'm interested in how this'll become, how mental health can become more of a conversation, just like physical health. How does it, how do we understand the connections between physical health and mental health? Because they're , they are connected and they're not separate. And um, I just wonder if there's gonna be a shift or if there's gonna be kind of what the shift will be and I'm , I'm curious and I'm kind of excited to hopefully see something better. Yeah . People accessing it and finding it and getting those needs met.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. You know, I hadn't, I hadn't thought about it from like a physical health standpoint and like the way in which physical health is a part of everyday conversation in a lot of people's lives. And the way I think about thinking about my kids, the way in which physical education is approached in schools, I hadn't really thought about that with mental health. And I've been receiving mental health services for 20 years and I never really quite thought of it that way, but gosh, yeah, it , it needs to, I mean, I do feel like everybody is talking. I shouldn't say everybody so many more people are talking about the importance of mental health and the challenges that they're having from a mental health standpoint in more open conversations, whether that's at work or the dinner table. Um, I'm hearing it so much more, but I am also hearing three month wait list . And you know, there was a time when we were looking for my son. He had some really big social anxiety after doing kindergarten on an iPad. And then when we started to have people in rooms, he, he was really struggling to be next to people which made sense because he had seen for a year adults back away from other adults. So why would he feel safe being close to somebody? Uh , and we actually were never able to get him in. And he , he worked, he worked through it and we got a lot of tidbits on Instagram , um, from different social media accounts that really like helped us find different books. And, you know, it was amazing the community that we ended up finding. Um, and I, I , you know , I've never actually shared that. We looked to Instagram for my son's mental health, but that's really where we, where we did it was, it was a real, it was a real thing. Um, and found some great, some great yeah, audio books and things like that and, and tools, but it was really challenging. And so I think I'm not surprised that that's what you're seeing as well, just based on my own small, you know, little snippet of my own experience. Um, I do hope that we figure something out and I, I really like that idea of it being something as well, known as irrefutable as the importance of physical health. I'd really like to see that

Speaker 2:

It was interesting. I was thinking about this , um, conversation today when I was going to the gym and I started wondering what if we had mental health memberships? What if you could go to therapy three times a week because you had a membership or like, what if there was something while you're walking on the treadmill, you have somebody you're talking about. I don't know. I just, it was, it was kind of thinking about how do we, how do we think about this outside of the box? Or how do we think about this? Um, because so many more people recognize the value of this for everyday life. Not just like really extreme struggles that this you can have regular work life, everyday struggles and , and really wanna be talking to somebody to help you out , sort it out for yourself.

Speaker 1:

I'm just over here dreaming about I , about that. I love that. I think that that's, I think that that's so important. And I think coming back to the work that you do and how you create that space, like the more access that we have in that kind of a way, like, think about everyone that benefits, you know, when one person gets support, when one caregiver and infant gets support, how many other people are then positively influenced by them having the tools that they need to have a nurturing environment. It's, it's really powerful. Maybe that helps us get outta that sticky room.

Speaker 2:

<laugh> yeah. Yeah.

Speaker 1:

Maybe we'll all just collectively open the door and walk out. I don't know. So much easier when you're using a imagery <laugh>

Speaker 2:

Yeah , exactly . Metaphors for yes . Complicated idea.

Speaker 1:

Yes, absolutely. Yeah. So how did you, I , I should have even started with this. How did you find PSM? Like where did this connection come from?

Speaker 2:

So while I was , um, the supervisor for this home visiting program, the founders of PSM were just getting started. And so they came and gave a little training and helped us as home visitors know that this is a resource for the families we were visiting. And so we were able to give the tools that PPS post support Minnesota had at the time , um, out to families and let them know. And then just maybe like a year or two ago, I was kind of thinking of my own work and how it's connected to infants and children and remembering about your group. And so getting back and diving into where things are now and how things are different than they were when , um, I was first introduced to you guys. And I find that being able to give this resource, especially the resource of the warm line, where somebody can answer a phone when a therapist can't, I can't be online . I can't be , uh, on call . I can't be , um, available anytime , but being able to have that as a support for families that has been really nice and any O and the groups that you guys run and , um, just any kind of information and knowing that you are not by yourself when you are feeling this way, that this is something that , um, people experience and there's people to talk to about it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. Oh , that's wonderful. Oh, I'm so, I'm so glad that yeah. That we were able to get connected with you when, when you first started , um, and how lovely that that's been P PSM was also growing. Right. And yeah . Figuring out like, how do we, we've got these things, we have this passion, how do we move forward? How do we help people? Um , and how do we grow and evolve? That's that's really special.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

I love that. And so kind of thinking about, you know, your hopes for mental health, your hopes for infant mental health and supporting caregivers , um, what are some of the things that you think that like the listeners right now, if , if they were to take away from my nervous rambling of my first time doing a podcast <laugh> , um, and your beautifully eloquent , uh, sharing about the work that you do, what are some of the , like the key takeaways about creating an environment and what are some of the things that they can, that they can do right now to help facilitate an environment for , um, for growing?

Speaker 2:

I guess when I think about that question, I think about what I would really like people to know is that there's more help than maybe they know there's more help sooner than, you know, there's more help with less, like you don't have to be so stressed that there's there's , um, there is help out there, there is help on social media. There is really good information. There's so many podcasts now and so many , um, resources. So I find myself right now re because of the struggle of people getting into mental health is trying to find a place, even on my own website to like give people resources or books or, or places that are speaking. Some of the things I know that is in the research, there's a resource called circle of security parenting. That is a really wonderful group for people to try to build their confidence around parenting, because it gives you really great language to be thinking about your parenting choices. And I guess just knowing that, like that saying that babies don't ha come with manuals is so untrue and that there really are like specific things out there. It's not a beautiful manual. Like that tells you when your baby doesn't do that. <laugh> but there is stuff out there and , and talking to people and asking people about their journeys. Um , you're not alone in the places that you're in. You're not, this is not the first time that anybody's experienced what you're experiencing. And I don't know that there's, there's more, more help and more support than you think, I guess is my thoughts.

Speaker 1:

That's wonderful. And I , I think the thing that resonates with me personally, and man, if I could go back seven years and, and hear those words is that like, there isn't, you don't need to do it alone. And there isn't a, you have to be this unwell like this, you know, having a hard time to be able to get, get help. Like you can get help at any stage of needing that, that help. I think that's the permission to receive help with however much you need is, is something we really need to remind ourselves of.

Speaker 2:

Maybe just keep asking if you don't get the answer you like, or if you don't like the answer that your person gave you, or the person that you asked , just keep asking a next , the next person or yeah . Something like that. I dunno .

Speaker 1:

I like that. I like that a lot. That's wonderful. <laugh> well, thank you so much for your time. This has been , uh, just a wonderful, yeah. A wonderful conversation. I really I'm. So I'm so honored to meet you and to hear about the work. And I'm so grateful that you are, that you are here, that you , uh, are in connection with PSM and that you are providing , um, just really great individual care , uh, for those that are in need of it , however much they need. <laugh> . Thank you so much, Michelle .

Speaker 2:

Thank you very much for having .