Erica, a first-time mom who works for a multinational banking and financial services company in New York City, felt overwhelmed in the early days of her parenting journey. She turned to Maven, available to her through her company’s benefits package, for parenting resources, scientifically-backed advice, and mental health support as she navigated motherhood.
There’s no instruction manual for raising a child
As a first-time mom, Erica sought to gather all the information and resources she could heading into her pregnancy. However, she quickly found that so much of the literature available to her focused on what it’s like to be pregnant, but not on what happens after. And, because of the pandemic, she couldn’t take classes at the hospital. “I had no idea what I was doing, and I didn’t know what to expect. After my daughter was born we were just kind of figuring things out on the fly.”
Erica started using Maven after encountering difficulties breastfeeding 一 she took a breastfeeding seminar and met with a lactation consultant regularly about her concerns. “I know a lot of my friends really struggled with breastfeeding and stopped a bit early, but attending the webinar and meeting with a Maven provider enabled me to be successful — I learned when my natural milk supply would arrive, the best positions to feed my baby to avoid spit up, and how to clear clogged ducts.” Without Maven, Erica “wouldn’t know where to go” for advice.
Addressing needs as they arose with specialty care providers
In addition to meeting with a Maven lactation consultant, Erica met with several other providers to address various issues with herself and her daughter. She met with an infant sleep consultant to figure out wake windows for naps, which was especially helpful as she and her husband adjusted to working from home.
She met with a physical therapist to cope with back pain she experienced following her induction and C-section. Erica met with a nutritionist to address weight gain concerns and learned different ways to add healthy fats to increase her baby’s weight. She met with a pediatrician to address things like spit up, eczema remedies, and a variety of other basic needs for herself and her baby. Discussing her baby’s food allergy, the Maven pediatrician recommended Erica “trust her gut” to see a pediatric allergist right away rather than wait until the 12-month wellness visit, which is what the baby’s pediatrician had recommended. The allergist confirmed Erica’s daughter had a severe food allergy and prescribed epinephrine medication right away.
Without Maven, Erica said she would have turned to social media and google for answers to her questions. “It’s good to have someone with a medical background to talk to. Everyone’s certified, I’m not just talking to random moms on forums 一 I’m talking to people with medical training. I feel more comfortable speaking with people who are accredited.”
“I struggled feeling reassured that we were doing the right thing for our daughter, or that things were going right. You only see the baby’s doctor every two or three months, and for me personally, there was barely a postpartum recovery plan. ”
Mental health support and continuous virtual care
Many mothers don’t feel adequately prepared for postpartum, otherwise known as the fourth trimester, which can cause significant distress that leads to poor healthcare outcomes, higher rates of postpartum depression, and lower return-to-work rates for mothers. Erica felt many of these same fears and anxieties: “I struggled feeling reassured that we were doing the right thing for our daughter, or that things were going right. You only see the baby’s doctor every two or three months, and for me personally, there was barely a postpartum recovery plan. ”
Erica started seeing a mental health specialist regularly after about eight months postpartum to talk about general anxiety issues, her relationship, and how she’ll navigate returning to work. “While I was talking to her one day, my daughter joined me during the appointment by chance. The provider didn’t ask any questions, she just listened to me talk and observed my daughter being around me. At our next session, she told me I was doing such a good job and she could see how much my daughter enjoyed being around me, and it really put me at ease.” That empathy, Erica says, helped quell deep-seated feelings of self doubt.
“Motherhood is just so complicated. But I’m just really grateful to have Maven at my fingertips for whenever I needed help. Maven was always there.”
More than just a helpful resource: a necessary tool for motherhood
With the help of Maven’s network of providers and clinical content, Erica has had her questions answered, her fears allayed, and has been able to successfully return to work. She and her husband feel prepared, and with Maven in their corner, can overcome the early hurdles of their parenting journey.
“Maven is a wonderful resource that you need to take advantage of because you don’t have to do it all alone...there are women who will support you in your journey to motherhood. I felt very supported by this community.”
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