Beginning on Monday, January 14, the library is hosting a bimonthly support group for women who are preparing for or adjusting to motherhood and are struggling with feelings of anxiety, hopelessness, and exhaustion. The group is organized and led by facilitators from Appalachian Perinatal Mental Health Alliance (APMHA), and meets on the second and fourth Monday of every month from 6-7 p.m. in the library’s second floor board room.
The group’s main facilitator, Jessi Rasnick, says that many expectant and new moms deal with perinatal mood disorder, which manifests as anxiety, depression, guilt, and rage. This experience can be extremely isolating because it feels like no one understands. “Even if they have a strong support system of family and friends,” Jessi explains, “most women still feel alone and misunderstood when struggling with perinatal issues.” The main point of the support group is to lift that burden of loneliness by giving moms a space to share with others who have experienced or are currently experiencing similar feelings.
Along with Jessi, Sara Reed and Kristina Dulaney will serve as co-facilitators. All three were trained by the Bloom Foundation to lead peer-to-peer support groups. Kristina is also one of the co-founders of APMHA, which is a branch of Postpartum Support International – Tennessee.
Contact Jessi at 423-491-5076 for more information about the support group or other APMHA resources. You can find updates about library programs and services by calling 423-434-4450, visiting www.jcpl.org, and following Johnson City Public Library on Facebook and Instagram.