This post is in proud, continued partnership with Allegheny Health Network. Friends we have worked so hard to fight the stigma surrounding maternal mental health, it’s time to fight another stigma in the maternal health world. Please note that for purposes of privacy, the name* of the patient referenced in this article has been changed. Click here for partnership disclosures.
“I have the best job in the entire world.”
I’m not sure what I expected Jean Fitzgibbons, CRNP with Allegheny Health Network’s Perinatal Hope Program, to say when I asked her on a recent Facebook Live conversation about what was rewarding about her job.
But what she did say – and the emotion that filled my body when she did – told me I wasn’t prepared for her heartfelt answer.
“Every one of these women is absolutely remarkable and they are amazing moms, and I feel really lucky to play a small role in their lives,” she said. “Just seeing how strong, resilient and remarkable these women are… every day I am awestruck by these women who are able to overcome such barriers and such seemingly insurmountable obstacles.”
I have to believe those aren’t words many in a stigmatized society would use to describe pregnant and new moms struggling with substance use, and certainly not words I imagine those struggling with it would use to describe themselves, either.Continue reading