Resources to Support Maternal Mental Health

by Lydia Johnson, M.S. (Certified Holistic Career Coach)

Lydia holding her infant son

My son and I in the heaven-hell of newborn phase

Did you know that up to 20% of women/pregnant people* suffer from mental health conditions during pregnancy and postpartum (

Additionally, 25 and 34 percent of birth parents report that their births were traumatic, and 1.5 and 9% of moms go on to develop PTSD. (PATTch).

May is Maternal Mental Health Awareness Month (it’s also general Mental Health Awareness Month), so this edition of Quick Tip Tuesday is dedicated to creating a list of resources and support mechanisms for moms and parents in any stage of their journey. I also have some bonus mental health resources that apply to non-parents.

This topic is especially near and dear to my heart because while the newborn phase was one full of incredible love and joy, it also contained my very darkest days. I wish I had a list like this when I was in the throes of postpartum depression, anxiety, and birth-related PTSD… so I’ve made it for you and your loved ones.

Please consider saving this article for future reference and sending it to anyone you love who is trying to become pregnant, currently pregnant, postpartum, or parenting. Sixty-six percent of women say they feel mental health challenges make them feel invisible and vulnerable, that they frequently feel dismissed, and that their struggles are overlooked (State of Invisibility,… so it’s best to err on the side of assuming most people navigating pregnancy, birth, and parenthood could use more support.

Maternal Mental health for Moms/Birth Parents of Any Stage:

The National Maternal Mental Health Hotline (US Only) offers free, confidential services, such as 24/7 access to professional counselors and referrals to local providers and support groups. The hotline is available in English and Spanish, with translation for over 60 other languages. Call anytime at 1-833-943-5746. If you are experiencing a suicidal crisis, please call or text the Suicide & Life Crisis line instead at 988.

National Maternal Mental Health Hotline HRSA Graphic

MGH Center of Women’s Mental Health is a Boston-based program with many in-person and virtual resources. They have ample resources available to patients, such as a list of intensive outpatient and inpatient treatment centers for perinatal mood and anxiety disorders by state, helpful websites and programs, and patient guides, all available for free on their website.

Peanut is an app and site I absolutely love. It’s an amazing way to connect with other women and parents at any stage of your pregnancy or life. You can make friends, read articles, join groups, and more. They also published an incredibly powerful report last year that I frequently reference— If you read it, I promise you’ll feel more seen.

Maternal Mental Health for Expecting and Postpartum Moms:

PS- Postpartum is a squishy, much-debated word, but please know that you can be experiencing the challenges of postpartum for a long, long time. Don’t hesitate to check out these resources even if you’re a year or several years out from birth.

Postpartum Support International offers countless resources and support options to expecting and new moms— they’re an invaluable one-stop shop for perinatal mental health. They offer:

  • A helpline (1-800-944-4773) is available from 8am to 11pm EST in English and Spanish.
  • Educational articles on perinatal mental health disorders via their blog.
  • A giant list of specialized support resources for different demographics (e.g., LGBTQ+, grandparents, ADHD parents, foster parents, BIPOC, etc.) and situations (e.g., breast/chestfeeding, specific medical/birth issues, etc).
  • There are online support groups for moms and dads, 1:1 peer mentor support (which I’m excited to join soon), chat support, provider directories, Facebook groups, and more.

PSI also has support for non-birth partners, because non-birth parents can develop postpartum depression and suffer from pregnancy/birth-related trauma as well.

Other Great Resources / Sites for Expecting & Postpartum People:

  • Check on Mom is a unique support program for expecting and new moms. It helps you create a Maternal mental Wellness plan and build a support system by enlisting (and then educating) a team of your loved ones to support you.
  • The HEAR HER campaign by the CDC is on a mission to prevent pregnancy-related deaths by educating people about urgent warning signs and how to communicate these to their providers.
  • The Prevention & Treatment of Traumatic Childbirth (PATTCh) seeks to serve people suffering from pregnancy and childbirth-related trauma. They have many resources available for professionals and individuals/families, such as insightful blogs, webinars/events, links to Facebook groups, articles, podcasts, and support options for those suffering from trauma.

Mental Health Resources for Anyone:

  • In America and Canada, there is a 24/7 toll-free suicide and crisis lifeline that can be reached by calling 988. You can reach a specialized LGBTQI+ affirming counselor by texting “Q” to 988 or by calling 988 and pressing “3.”
  • In America, there is also a national crisis text line: Text HOME to 741741, available 24/7 for text support with a Crisis Counselor.
  • The National Institute of Mental Health has various resources for people experiencing hardship, trauma, or distress. It also has tips and tricks for finding a healthcare provider or treatment.—

* I would like to get better at using language that is inclusive of transgender, nonbinary, and cisgender folks who are navigating birth, pregnancy, postpartum, and parenthood. I plan to swap terms out interchangeably, such as “motherhood” and “parenthood” and “pregnant women” and “pregnant people.” I recognize that this is an imperfect solution to a broader need for our society to continue to evolve our language in this space and I will continue to evolve my own vocabulary as I learn better ways to do so.

Hi, I'm Lydia Johnson, MS

Hi, I'm Lydia Johnson, MS

Holistic Career Coach & Founder of ThriveCulture Coaching

I’m a dual-certified career coach and Industrial-Organizational Psychology consultant on a mission to banish Sunday Scaries and help you reclaim your life from work stress. I specialize in helping ultra-busy people design a fulfilling and burnout-free career that leaves more space for the rest of your life. Whether you need to overhaul everything, find a new job, or make your current role work better for you, I’m here to help.

You can learn more about my holistic and evidence-based approach on my website or jump on the phone for a FREE 20-minute consult call to learn more about how career coaching can help you finally enjoy a fulfilling, burnout-free career.


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