Motherhood and Marriage

About Molly Millwood

Molly is a licensed psychologist-doctorate with a Ph.D. in clinical psychology.  She has 21 years of experience as a therapist and have been in private practice in Vermont for 14 years. She is also an associate professor at Saint Michael's College, where she teaches in both the undergraduate psychology and graduate clinical psychology programs and engage in research and scholarly writing related to her areas of expertise: psychotherapy, psychological distress and trauma, marriage and relationship functioning, and motherhood.

When Molly Millwood became a mother, she was fully prepared for what she would gain: an adorable baby boy; hard-won mothering skills; and a messy, chaotic, beautiful life. But what she did not expect was what she would lose: aspects of her identity, a baseline level of happiness, a general sense of wellbeing. And though she had the benefit of a supportive husband during this transition, she also at times resented the fact that the disruption to his life seemed to pale in comparison to hers.

In To Have and to Hold, Molly explores the complex terrain of new motherhood, illuminating the ways it affects women psychologically, emotionally, physically, and professionally—as well as how it impacts their partnership. Along with the arrival of a bundle of joy come thorny issues such as self-worth, control, autonomy, and dependency. And for most new mothers, these issues are experienced within the context of an intimate relationship, adding another layer of tension, conflict, and confusion to an already challenging time.

As Molly examines the inextricable link between women’s well-being as new mothers and the well-being of their relationships, she offers guidance to help readers reclaim their identities, overcome their guilt and shame, and repair their relationships. A blend of personal narrative, scientific research, and stories from Molly’s clinical practice, To Have and to Hold provides a much-needed lifeline to new mothers everywhere.

Episode highlights

  • Molly's new book To Have and To Hold, Motherhood, Marriage & The Modern Dilemna

  • Molly discusses how we as a culture tend to value mothering skills as opposed to a mother's wellbeing where there is little emphasis on women's metal health and wellbeing

  • Molly's changed attitude to social media - transparency and honesty is now being seen.

  • Mother guilt.

  • Inner work and deeper layers of healing that can be done from our own childhoods.

  • Molly discusses how clients tend to idolise their therapists – Molly points out they themselves are not immune from mother issues.

  • Not having time in postpartum period to reflect on experience.

  • Not much education on postpartum period.

  • Birth experience – room for healthy baby AND healthy mother.

  • Relationship between the mother and partner.

  • Mother circles and mother groups can help. Women to women connection.

  • Advice for new mothers.

  • The power of words

Relevant links

Molly’s website, Instgaram

To and Have and to hold can be bought here

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