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Support group for depressed new moms and moms-to-be

Depressed mother cuddling her newborn baby.

Depressed mother cuddling her newborn baby. Credit: Fotolia

Moms or moms-to-be who feel they are experiencing a perinatal mood and anxiety disorder (formerly known as postpartum depression) can attend a free support group that starts April 22 in Babylon.

The “Mother’s Circle of Hope” group helps moms with this condition, which affects one of eight pregnant women and one of every five to seven mothers in the first year after giving birth, says nurse Karen Kaplan, the perinatal education coordinator at Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center, which sponsors the program.

Many moms suffer in silence because they are ashamed and guilty, she says. This is supposed to be the happiest time of their life and they are confused about why they feel sad and embarrassed to talk about it, Kaplan says.

“We launched the program two years ago because so many moms don’t get the help they need. So many moms go through it,” Kaplan says. The name postpartum depression was changed to perinatal mood and anxiety disorder because pregnant women also experience the issue, Kaplan says.

The eight-weekly sessions are from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at 661 Deer Park Ave. Participants are required to register in advance by calling 631-376-HOPE. Moms are welcome to bring babies with them if they can’t secure child care.

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