New Book from Praeclarus Press, When Postpartum Packs a Punch, Offers Solace to Mothers Who Have Experienced Traumatic Birth and Perinatal Mood Disorders

Share Article

Author Kristina Cowan describes her own struggles with traumatic birth and postpartum depression, and weaves them together with the voices of parents, experts, and researchers. When Postpartum Packs a Punch, a new book from Praeclarus press, shows that while the U.S. has made strides in caring for new mothers, there is still much to do.

When Postpartum Packs a Punch

When Postpartum Packs a Punch

Stories of mothers’ struggles with postpartum depression are an antidote for stigma, because they let mothers know that they are not alone.

As a new mother, author Kristina Cowan was overwhelmed after experiencing a traumatic birth and postpartum depression. As a journalist, she wanted to use her story to help other mothers. In When Postpartum Packs a Punch, Cowan weaves together her story with those of other parents, and uses these stories as a balm to help heal and stir hope. The stories represent diverse backgrounds and perspectives that underscore the prevalence of mood disorders after childbirth. They also show how an overcoming spirit can fight terrors of the mind—and win.

When Postpartum Packs a Punch offers solace to mothers who have experienced traumatic birth and perinatal mood disorders, as well as a chorus of different voices—parents, experts, and researchers. All are singing the same song: while the U.S. has made strides in caring for new mothers, there is still room for improvement. Stigma silences women, and blinds those on the sidelines. Stories of mothers’ struggles are an antidote for stigma, because they let mothers know that they are not alone.

Praise for When Postpartum Packs a Punch

“‘First I had a baby. Then I felt crazy.’ Such a powerful and poignant beginning to this important book on postpartum illness. What Kristina Cowan offers goes way beyond the courage of sharing her own and other personal stories. When Postpartum Packs a Punch speaks the language that postpartum families long for; it is rich with compassion, hope, and much-needed resources. This book is hugely informational, it is comforting, it is healing. ”
-Karen Kleiman, MSW, LCSW

Founder of The Postpartum Stress Center, and author of Therapy and the Postpartum Woman and The Art of Holding in Therapy

“If there was ever a book for fathers to educate themselves about perinatal mental health, it is this incredible book.”
-Mark Williams

Founder of International Fathers Mental Health Day, speaker, author, and campaigner

“Are you feeling the punch of the postpartum period? Many new parents do. But in her book, When Postpartum Packs a Punch, Kristina Cowan helps the reader understand the scientific and personal sides of this often-unanticipated problem. This well-researched and well-written book can help you see that you are not alone in your struggle, and that there is help.”

-Dr. Jonathan S. Abramowitz

Clinical psychologist, professor, and international expert on OCD and anxiety disorders

“Like a thunderclap on a cloudless day, perinatal mood and anxiety disorders upend a woman’s vision of herself as a mother, as a person. With unflinching honesty, Kristina Cowan chronicles her odyssey through the heartbreak of depression following her son’s birth. Using her story as a backdrop, Cowan weaves a tapestry of other women’s voices, those who love them, and those who treat them. This enlightening book uniquely describes the history and development of international treatment models, which are finally being adopted and adapted in this country, serving up hope, inspiration, and reassurance.”

-Dr. Margaret Howard

Director of the Day Hospital and Women’s Behavioral Health at Women and
Infants Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island

“Kristina Cowan’s book, When Postpartum Packs a Punch: Fighting Back and Finding Joy, is a great contribution to reliable education and research on perinatal mental health. As are most therapists and advocates, I am careful and protective when I recommend books to parents who are struggling with distress and trauma related to pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum. I’m also determined to share evidence-based research in the field with providers and researchers. Cowan puts her expert reporting and expressive skills to work here, and the result is a resource that is informative, hopeful, and motivating. Including the subject of posttraumatic stress as a common perinatal mental health issue is just one example of the unique contributions in this book. We need more resources like this— using clear evidence to help families and providers improve the landscape for perinatal mental health. The information and personal excerpts empower families, as well as providers and policy makers. Together, and with solid information like this, we can make the landscape easier to travel, and our ability to care more effective. Cowan writes, ‘Changing the way PMADs are discussed, both formally and informally, is crucial. ... By saying, “I’ve been where you are, and it’s awful. But I got through it, and so will you,” we show new mothers they’re not alone. We offer hope, which is the heart of this book.’”

-Wendy Newhouse Davis, Ph.D.

Counseling & Consultation, and executive director of Postpartum Support International

Kristina Cowan started writing when she was 5. Years later, she earned a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University, and these days she covers mental health and women’s issues. She lives in the Chicago area with her husband and two young children. When Postpartum Packs a Punch is her first book.

Praeclarus Press is a small press founded by health psychologist, Dr. Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, focusing on women’s health. The mission of Praeclarus Press is to publish books that change people’s lives. Praeclarus Press is based in Amarillo, Texas.

When Postpartum Packs a Punch is available at

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Ken Tackett
Follow >
Kathleen Kendall-Tackett
since: 11/2011
Like >
Follow us on
Visit website