This thesis is a heuristic exploration of the psychological death and rebirth women may experience during initiation into motherhood within American culture. Guided by the author’s personal experience, dreams, and myths, this thesis examines the initiatory process and requirements of mothers-to-be and the cultural support typically available during the transformation occurring throughout pregnancy and childbirth. Evidence suggests that too little cultural awareness and structured support of new mothers’ psychological initiatory needs may adversely influence the onset of, and prolong, postpartum depression, a prevalent concern in the United States. In the absence of cultural support, archetypal motifs describing the symbolic and historic transition from maiden to mother may assist initiates through the complex psychological process of becoming mothers. Therefore, depth psychology may provide clinicians and laypeople with awareness of the important and timeless transition new mothers may face, as well as the language to both guide and witness maidens becoming mothers.
|Advisor:||Taylor, C. D.|
|School:||Pacifica Graduate Institute|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 53/06M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Mental health, Medicine, Womens studies, Counseling Psychology, Individual & family studies|
|Keywords:||Childbirth, Depression, Dreams, Motherhood initiation, Pregnancy|
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