Barbara Almond: The Hidden Side of Motherhood

MON, JAN 10, 2011 (41:39)

Barbara Almond, Stanford professor and psychoanalyst, discusses the darker side of childbearing and her new book, The Monster Within: The Hidden Side of Motherhood. Whether it is uncertainty over having a child, fears of pregnancy and childbirth, or negative thoughts about one’s own children, mixed feelings about motherhood are not just hard to discuss, they are a powerful social taboo. In her new book, Barbara Almond draws on her extensive clinical experience to bring this highly troubling issue to light. In a portrait of the hidden side of contemporary motherhood, she finds that ambivalence of varying degrees is a ubiquitous phenomenon, yet one that too often causes anxiety, guilt, and depression. Weaving together case histories with examples from literature and popular culture, Almond uncovers the roots of ambivalence, tells how it manifests in lives of women and their children, and describes a spectrum of maternal behavior–from normal feelings to highly disturbed mothering characterized by blame, misuse, abuse, even child murder.

+ BIO: Barbara Almond

Barbara Almond is a psychotherapist and psychoanalyst in private practice, a member of the faculty at the San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis, and Emeritus Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor at Stanford University. She is coauthor of The Therapeutic Narrative: Fictional Relationships and the Process of Psychological Change.

+ BIO: Steve Almond

Steve Almond is the author the story collections My Life in Heavy Metal and The Evil B.B. Chow, the novel Which Brings Me to You (with Julianna Baggott), and the non-fiction books Candyfreak and (Not That You Asked). His new book, Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life, will be out in Spring 2010. He is also, crazily, self-publishing a book called This Won’t Take But a Minute, Honey, which is composed of 30 short short stories, and 30 brief essays on the psychology and practice of writing.

Harvard Book Store
Mental Health Month Series