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Recorded Webinar: Where’s the Milk: The Unhappy Intersection of Traumatic Birth and Breastfeeding by Leslie Butterfield, Ph.D.


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stock-beatpink.jpgWhere’s the Milk: The Unhappy Intersection of Traumatic Birth and Breastfeeding

by Leslie Butterfield, Ph.D.


This product is a recording of a live webinar hosted on: 9/27/18, 10:00 AM, PST


Approved for 1.5 L CERPs


This presentation will focus on (1) identifying the experiences that contribute to a woman’s perception of having experienced a traumatic birth; (2) understanding the impact that traumatic birth can have on the breastfeeding experience; and (3) learning strategies to assess and support traumatized women as they begin their breastfeeding journey.



1. List five factors that may contribute to a birth being experienced as traumatic

2. Identify four things that you might notice in a birth story that would alert you to the possible presence of a traumatic response.

3. Name three screening tools that can be used to assess for perinatal distress – including trauma

4. Describe three methods for helping a traumatized mother to “better connect” to her infant 




I. Traumatic birth affects lactogenesis and successful breastfeeding

A. what is traumatic birth
B. what factors contribute to a birth being perceived as traumatic
C. Subjective vs. objective birth experiences

(1) interpersonal disruptions
(2) cognitive appraisal styles
(3) negative emotionality
(4) peritraumatic dissociation

II. Trauma informed lactation care

A. ways that traumatic birth impacts lactation (prolactin, cortisol, oxytocin)
B. “listening” to the birth story with a trauma-recognizing ear
C. Know the emotional impact of birth trauma on breastfeeding

III. Screening for perinatal trauma and distress
A. Perinatal Posttraumatic Stress Questionnaire
B. Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale
C. Perinatal Anxiety Screening Scale

IV. Making a plan for women traumatized during childbirth
A. Vulnerability
B. Recognizing shock
C. Healing disconnections
D. DOs and DON’Ts

(2) Interpersonal disruptions
(1) Cognitive appraisal styles
(2) Negative emotionality
(3) Peritraumatic dissociation



dscn5315-1-.jpgLeslie Butterfield, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist specializing in perinatal mental health. She runs a private practice in Seattle, is the current President of PATTCh (Prevention and Treatment of Traumatic Childbirth), a state coordinator and trainer for PSI (Postpartum Support International), and co-designs and presents the Perinatal Support of Washington trainings. Additionally, she travels both nationally and internationally in her capacity as a consultant and trainer in the field, most recently in France and Turkey.

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