Here to talk about taboo topics surrounding motherhood and the gaps in perinatal healthcare and reproductive health. Join your host Amber-lee from @thepowerofbirth (and editor Rigel from @b.d.esigns) as she engages in candid conversations with experts in health, science, fitness, maternity, sociology, and psychology and people with lived experiences.
Together with our guests, we raise awareness, challenge biases and expose gaps in women’s health. We believe that by sharing your stories and information provided by experts, we can empower you to advocate for yourself and your wellbeing. We provide practical tips, education and a fresh perspective on perinatal health and modern motherhood through integrating lived experience and expert knowledge.
At The Power of Birth and through this podcast, we’re here to reduce stigma, eliminate shame, and start important conversations that shift the way we think and practice. Together, we can break the silence, drive change and shape the future of women’s healthcare.
You can visit the website for more information, free resources, and opportunities to share your story: www.thepowerofbirth.net
Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram and Facebook and leave a review if you love the pod!
Disclaimer: Please note that the advice given on this podcast is of general nature and should not be considered as personalised or professional advice. The information shared on this podcast is intended for educational and informational purposes only. We do not assume any liability for actions taken based on the content discussed in our episodes. We highly recommend conducting thorough research and seeking professional advice before making any decisions or taking any actions about your health and care providers. Please remember that the views and opinions expressed by our guests or the host do not necessarily reflect the views of The Power of Birth as a whole and we hope you find the conversations engaging and thought-provoking. Lastly, we would like to remind you that while we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date content, the world is constantly evolving and new information may emerge that could change the validity and applicability of advice given in previous episodes.
Episode 47: Brianna’s Story: The Dark Cloud that Follows You After Loss
Brianna talks about her experience in her first pregnancy which was full of excitement and preparation to then find out at 14 weeks her baby had passed at 10 weeks gestation. Brianna talks about the devastating realisation she had been carrying a dead baby and openly talks about what her physical loss looked like and the aftermath of her ‘missed miscarriage’ and the impact grief, sadness and post traumatic stress symptoms had on her mind and life. When Brianna did finally fall pregnant again, everything was ok but the dark cloud of possible complications or loss followed her for the entire pregnancy. Brianna shares her feelings and experiences throughout her pregnancy and into her birth. Brianna talks of an empowering birth experience but a difficult postpartum with a very unsettled baby, feeding struggles and trying to decipher anxiety and intuition as a new mother.
If you are struggling with pregnancy loss or infant loss, please reach out to these amazing organisations who can support you
If you are struggling with your mental health in pregnancy or postpartum, please reach out to
Music is called "Flowers" by Limujii and can be found on YouTube, SoundCloud and Spotify.
Episode 46: Rebecca’s Story: Perinatal Acute Anxiety, Tokophobia, Postnatal Depression, OCD & PTSD
Rebecca bravely shares her experiences struggling with her mental health since childhood and how her experiences becoming a mother exacerbated her struggles. Rebecca openly shares about her very wanted pregnancy and how anxiety and tokophobia (clinical fear of childbirth) robbed her of any joy or excitement and how that impacted her birth decisions and immediate postpartum experiences. We chat about distinguishing anxiety, tokophobia and common fears of childbirth.
Rebecca shares about her birth and the acute psychological distress she experienced and how that impacted her postpartum which quickly took a scary turn. Rebecca was admitted into a Mothers and Baby Unit to treat her mental health struggles and she shares about how this completely transformed her mental health and her life. Rebecca talks candidly about her grief, self blame, the experience of anxiety, OCD and intense intrusive thoughts as well as her struggles accepting diagnoses and support including medication. We also chat about the importance in having mental health professionals with a special interest in perinatal mental health issues and the difference that made in Rebecca’s diagnosis and recovery.
There is so much to learn from those who have lived experience with these mental health conditions and I truly believe this episode can benefit other struggling mums simply by real talk and validation, but also for mental health professionals who work with mums.
You can find Rebecca at @perinatalstoriesaustralia on socials, her podcast Perinatal Stories Australia or website www.perinatalstoriesaustralia.com
If you or someone you know is experiencing signs and symptoms of anxiety, depression, OCD, tokophobia or PTSD – please urgently seek professional help.
www.cope.org.au (they also have a perinatal psychologist directory)
Episode 45: It’s Just the Baby Blues… Or Is It?
Too often struggling mums go to get support for their mental health and are told, “its just the baby blues, it will pass” when really, it’s not the baby blues. I, Amber-lee your host, thought an episode addressing all things baby blues would be helpful to this audience so that we can have an understanding of what is normal and what is not in early postpartum. I describe what the baby blues looks like, common symptoms, hormonal fluctuations, sociocultural factors, ways to help you through it as well as when to seek help.
Remember, the baby blues are temporary and should pass within 2 weeks of experiencing symptoms. If symtpoms are persisting or worsening, it is important you seek further support as that is not that baby blues.
In this episode I talk about a hormone graph and if you would like the visual you can see it here: https://www.thepowerofbirth.net/post/understanding-the-difference-between-baby-blues-and-postnatal-depression-a-guide-for-new-mothers
This episode is for educational and informational purposes only. Please seek mental health advice from your health professionals.
You can download free resources for your emotional health when you subscribe to thepowerofbirth.net or if you head to the printable PDF page there is plenty for you to explore.
Make sure you are following @thepowerofbirth on social media too!
David R. Grattan, Sharon R. Ladyman, Chapter 2 – Neurophysiological and cognitive changes in pregnancy, Handbook of Clinical Neurology, Volume 171, 2020, Pages 25-55.
Some information was taken from Advanced Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorder Training with Postpartum Support International
Episode 44: ’More Than A Healthy Baby’ - Perinatal Trauma & Post Traumatic Growth with Dr Erin Bowe
This episode delves into the often-overlooked world of perinatal trauma and post-traumatic growth. Your host Amber-lee Buendicho is joined by the very down-to-earth and insightful Dr. Erin Bowe, author of the book 'More Than A Healthy Baby: Finding Strength & Growth After Birth Trauma'. We talk about what led her to write this book and Dr Erin expands on some of the concepts she writes about, including her own traumatic birth and breastfeeding experiences.
We explore the complexities of perinatal trauma, including birth and breastfeeding trauma, differentiating what Dr Erin calls 'little t trauma' and 'big T trauma', the psychological mechanisms of trauma, the role of perception, and gaining an understanding of how these experiences can deeply affect a mother's and families.
One of the critical issues discussed in this episode is the tendency to dismiss mothers' experiences and struggles, often misdiagnosing their trauma as mere depression. Dr. Erin sheds light on the importance of recognising and addressing the unique challenges faced by mothers in the perinatal period, helping listeners understand the difference between trauma and other mental health issues.
We learn through Dr Erin about Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) emerges as a promising and effective therapeutic approach. Dr. Erin provides valuable insights into the workings of EMDR and its potential to facilitate healing and growth after perinatal trauma.
In the latter part of the episode, we explore the profound concept of meaning-making and how it contributes to post-traumatic growth. The conversation delves into the power of hope and resilience within motherhood, revealing that growth and strength can emerge from even the most challenging experiences and what that can look using Kintsugi as a powerful analogy. Amber-lee shares some of her personal experiences with post-traumatic growth.
Disclaimer: The content of this episode is intended for informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical or psychological advice.
A big thank you to The Kind Press Publishing and Dr Erin Bowe for offering some of our listeners a chance at getting their very own copy of Erin's books More Than A Healthy Baby: Finding Strength & Growth After Birth Trauma and Social Media Detox For Mums: A New Way To Find Balance - listen to this episode to find out how you can get a free copy (Australian residents only). Limited stock available.
If you or someone you know is struggling with their mental health in motherhood please consider reaching out to the wonderful support organisations within Australia:
For our international listeners go to www.postpartum.net
Episode 43: Sex After Baby & Rediscovering Sensuality
Join me as I sit down with Vanessa, mum and Sex Therapist from Authentic Awareness, for an eye-opening discussion on the topic of sex after having a baby. Together, we delve into the often overlooked aspects of postpartum sex and how the conventional postpartum six-week clearance from healthcare providers can be a missed opportunity for important conversations with women and couples.
Throughout our conversation, we tackle a wide range of issues, starting with the fluctuation of libido and the differences in sexual desires between males and females. Vanessa, drawing from her expertise, generously shares her invaluable tips for rediscovering sensuality after becoming a mother. We address the complexities of navigating intimacy when our partner initiates sexual activity, but we find ourselves not in the mood or feeling exhausted from the demands of motherhood. We also discuss the societal pressure to prioritise intercourse over other forms of sexual connection and intimacy, and the cultural expectations of women and sex, shedding light on alternative ways to nurture and strengthen the bond between partners.
Naturally, a conversation about postpartum sex wouldn't be complete without addressing birth injuries. We explore how these injuries can impact sexual experiences and provide insights into navigating this often overlooked aspect of postpartum recovery.
You can find Vanessa @authenticawareness or https://authenticawareness.com.au/
You can purchase Mama’s Sensual Safari here: https://authenticawareness.com.au/courses/
Disclaimer: The information provided is for educational and informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional advice or consultation. It is important to consult with healthcare providers or qualified professionals for personalized guidance and support regarding your specific situation.
Episode 42: Embracing Healing After a Traumatic Homebirth (HBAC)
In this powerful episode, we follow the courageous journey of Bec Black, a perinatal psychologist and mother of three, as she shares her deeply personal and traumatic experience of attempting a Homebirth After Caesarean (HBAC). Bec takes us through her emotional and physical struggle, the unforeseen challenges she faced during labour, and her transfer to the hospital.
Throughout the episode, Bec opens up about the intense emotions she grappled with following her traumatic birth experience. She talks honestly about the profound struggle she encountered in accepting that her birth did not unfold as she had hoped and offers vulnerability and insight into the complex emotions that can arise when expectations clash with reality during childbirth.
As a psychologist specialising in perinatal mental health, Bec also reflects on how her own journey informs her professional practice. She shares how her personal experience of birth trauma has deepened her empathy for her clients, and discusses the importance of acknowledging and addressing the emotional wounds that can arise from childbirth.
The episode delves into Bec's postpartum journey as well, shedding light on the challenges she faced during this vulnerable period. She explores the impact of her birth experience on her mental and emotional wellbeing, and how she navigated the path towards healing and acceptance. Her story serves as a beacon of hope for others who may have experienced trauma during childbirth, inspiring them to seek support and reminding them that healing is possible.
Join us for this heartfelt episode as we witness Bec's courage, resilience, and growth, ultimately discovering that even in the face of trauma, there can be the possibility of finding purpose and healing.
The following episode contains sensitive content related to traumatic childbirth. We advise listeners to prioritise their wellbeing and exercise self-care when engaging with this content. If you find yourself in need of support or guidance, please reach out to a qualified healthcare professional or a mental health provider.
You can find Bec @themindfulbirthmovement or https://themindfulbirthmovement.com.au/
Love love love Amber-Lee, her podcast and all her wisdom in the topics she shares. I’ve had the opportunity to learn from Amber and she really takes the time to connect with, engage and understand her audience. Such a grounded professional who is also an energetic vibe, she ticks all the boxes for empowering women.
Love everything about your show. So relatable!
Thank you 🙏
Each topic is one every women needs to bring into their world and take tool to add to their tool box for when necessary