Transformed by Postpartum Depression: Women's Stories of Trauma and Growth, second edition by Walker Ladd

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Fully updated with new data, new stories, and new examinations.


Praise for Transformed by Postpartum Depression


"Dr. Walker Ladd has forged the future for maternal mental health. Her provocative book, Transformed by Postpartum Depression, will challenge and change clinicians, researchers, and the public. Finally, the paradigm of PPD has been broadened to include trauma and the human condition. She has exposed a missing piece of the postpartum puzzle. Thank you, Walker!"

—Jane Honikman, MA, Founder, Postpartum Support International


"Walker Ladd has achieved greatness in the PPD community with her emphasis on trauma, transformation, and personal growth. What makes Transformed by Postpartum Depression so uniquely powerful is that Ladd stands in the face of preconceived notions and challenges them with the stories and voices of real women who speak the truth and deserve to be heard. The conviction of these experiences holds tremendous healing power on behalf of the PPD woman seeking support as well as valued wisdom for the clinician who is accompanying this journey."

Karen Kleiman, MSW, Founder & Director, The Postpartum Stress Center; Author, Therapy and the Postpartum Woman


"The beauty of Dr. Ladd’s book, Transformed by Postpartum Depression, is that it is written not only for clinicians, but also for women who have suffered through postpartum depression. This book will provide much needed hope for mothers in the throes of this devastating mood disorder. The powerful narratives included in this book provide the readers with an insider’s view of how mothers have been transformed by postpartum depression."

—Cheryl Tatano Beck, DNSc, CNM, FAAN, Professor, School of Nursing, University of Connecticut


"This book not only gives incredible insight into the raw and exquisitely agonizing truth about the experience of PPD, but it takes the concept and outcomes of treatment to a new, unexplored level. My clients have taught me over the last 20 years that PPD is indeed a traumatic, life stopping, and life altering experience that is not easily forgotten. Being inextricably intertwined with birth, a supposedly “blessed event,” PPD shatters expectations and lives, and like a hurricane, blows women to pieces. Going beyond healing, Dr. Ladd explores concepts of resilience and taking women beyond simply surviving into thriving in their re-creation of a new self. This book takes a critical examination of a new direction in the field of PPD to help women create a new life through the process of healing, finding meaning and hope, and rebuilding."

—Pec Indman EdD, MFT, Author, Beyond the Blues


"I found Walker Ladd’s book an intelligent analysis of the debilitating process of postpartum depression and the significant impact it had on the lives of women and those close to them. It was sensitively written with elements of intense sympathy, empathy, and consideration for the courageous narratives which permeate throughout the book. Powerful personal thoughts were shared on the helplessness of suicidality and the need for something more than the superficiality of talk, but instead about the need for a solution and the hope that they would eventually improve. Walker’s book offers a specific insight into the plight of mothers who have suffered from postpartum depression, and the cathartic, emotional journey they had to take to seek the peace they deserved. I really enjoyed reading the book and found it captured the elements of PPD in a very interesting and sensitive fashion."

—Dr Jane Hanley, Past President of the International Marcé Society for Perinatal Mental Health, Hon Senior Lecturer in Primary Care, Public and Mental Health, College of Human and Health Sciences, Swansea University, Swansea, Wales


Transformed by Postpartum Depression traces the experiences of 25 women through the trauma of postpartum depression. The impact of untreated postpartum depression is described within the context of the psychological literature on trauma and posttraumatic growth. Women describe being terrified by symptoms they didn’t understand and the systemic failure of care providers to screen or treat their worsening symptoms, resulting in life threatening and life changing trauma. Interviews with leaders in the field of maternal mental health provide critical counterpoint to the concept of postpartum depression as a traumatic life event. Transformed by Postpartum Depression provides timely and insightful reflection on the state of maternal mental health in the United States.


img-2276.jpgWalker Ladd, Ph.D. has been a recognized thought leader in the field of maternal mental health for nearly two decades. Her writing and research challenge current paradigms of motherhood and mental illness, using women’s stories to reveal the hidden truths and extraordinary dimensions of the lived experience of motherhood. Dr. Ladd’s personal experiences with traumatic childbirth, breast cancer, postpartum depression, and major depressive disorder drive her passion for her bold, soulful, and transformative work.


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