Support and Resources for Parents and Families

Boston and Surrounding Area – Jewish Family and Children’s Services

JF&CS offers a wide array of supports and services to mothers and their families.   New parent support groups will continue to be offered via Zoom.  You can register for the following groups in your community through the links below.

For questions about JF&CS’s New Parent Support Groups, contact Diane Gardner, Support Group Coordinator, at dgardner@jfcsboston.org.

Arlington New Parents Group  Fridays, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Brookline New Parents Group  Tuesdays, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Cambridge New Parents Group Thursdays, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Dorchester New Parents Group Tuesdays, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Jamaica Plain New Parents Group Wednesdays, 1:30 – 3:00 p.m.

Medford New Parents Group Tuesdays, 12:30 – 2:00 p.m.

Melrose New Parents Group Wednesdays, 10:30 a.m. – noon.

Sharon New Parents Group Fridays, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Watertown New Parents Group Fridays, 9:15 – 10:45 a.m.

New Adoptive Parents Support Group Fridays, 10:00-11:30 a.m.

Single Parents Support Group Mondays, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Parents of Toddlers Support Group, Wednesdays, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.

Parents of Multiples Support Group, Thursdays, 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Entre Nosotras/Among Us, Mondays-Fridays, 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. “Entre Nosotras” es  nuestro grupo de apoyo GRATUITO para mamás con niños pequeños. Lunes – viernes, 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. 

Postpartum Depression Support Group: “This Isn’t What I Expected”, For mothers suffering from postpartum depression or anxiety on Tuesdays, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.

Fragile Beginnings Zoom Support Group, for parents whose babies have spent time in the NICU, Tuesdays, noon – 1:00 p.m.

Lauren & Mark Rubin Visiting Moms Program is a free service that matches volunteers with new moms or dads during the first year of their baby’s life.

The Center for Early Relationship Support (CERS) program and services are continuing to serve clients virtually and by phone.  CERS is accepting new referrals and is responding to questions from community partners, potential clients, and concerned family and friends. More information about these programs and services and how to connect if you or someone you know needs support is available on the JF&CS website.

Beyond Boston: Virtual groups for parents and families nationwide

William James College is offering a series of free virtual groups for parents and children during COVID19, including parenting and co-parenting support groups, virtual play groups, and elementary education support groups. You can find more information at their events site here.

Postpartum Support International (PSI)

The PSI HelpLine is available to moms, dads, and families, or anyone who may be looking for resources to help a loved one. Call 1-800-944-4773 (4PPD).

English and Español: Text Message to 503-894-9453 (English) or 971-420-0294 ( Español)

PSI Coordinators: Local PSI coordinators can help find resources and referrals in your area, including referrals to teletherapy resources (HERE).

PSI Online Support Groups are available (LINK): Perinatal (Pregnancy & Postpartum) Mood Support Group, Pregnancy Mood Support Group, NICU Parents, Military Moms.

PSI Facebook Group: Join the PSI Closed Facebook group to find support and encouragement from other parents, who may be going through similar experiences (LINK).

PSI Chat with an Expert: During these weekly sessions, you can connect with other moms and dads, and talk with a PSI expert about resources, symptoms, options and general information about perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (LINK).

PSI peer support: https://www.postpartum.net/peer-mentor-program/

Other Mental Health Resources for Pregnant and Postpartum Women

RESOLVE COVID-19 Support Resource Center:  RESOLVE has created a list of resources for those dealing with infertility.  In the setting of the COVID-19 pandemic, most centers have suspended infertility treatment.  One of the core elements of  RESOLVE is peer support; many of the peer-led support groups will continue to run on videoconferencing platforms.

A full list of our mental health resources for pregnant and postpartum women can be found on our RESOURCES page.

General Mental Health Resources

While these resources may not be specific to the perinatal population, there are many options on the list offering support and strategies for managing stress and anxiety.

Headspace App: Headspace uses an online platform or mobile app to provide mindfulness and meditation techniques. In addition, the folks at Headspace have created a collection of exercies, called Weathering the Storm, which is FREE. It includes meditations, sleep, and movement exercises to help manage stress and anxiety during the COVID-10 outbreak.

Cognitive Behavioral Strategies to Manage Anxiety: Tools to Build Resilience (Massachusetts General Hospital)

Calm in the Time of Coronavirus (Benson-Henry Mind Body Institute)

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Manage Anxiety & Stress (Centers for Disease Control & Prevention)

Mental Health and Psychosocial Considerations During COVID-19 Outbreak (World Health Organization)

Coping with Coronavirus Anxiety (Harvard Health Blog)

Managing Relationships in a Time of Social Distancing (Lifespan Research Foundation)

A more comprehensive list of mental health resources can be found at the MGH Department of Psychiatry Guide to Mental Health Resources for COVID-19

Resources for Providers

Perinatal Psychiatry Information Resources

Healthcare providers caring for women during pregnancy and the postpartum period can obtain specialized information on the diagnosis and treatment of women with perinatal mood and anxiety disorders and on the reproductive safety of psychotropic medications from the following sources:

MGH Center for Women’s Mental Health –  Our website continues to cover the most recent news in perinatal psychiatry.

Virtual Rounds at the MGH Center for Women’s Mental Health – Every Wednesday between 2pm and 3pm EST, we are hosting rounds via Zoom conferencing for professionals in order to discuss treatment options with respect to presented cases and the decisions patients make about treatment before, during, and after pregnancy.  Particular attention is given to the safest use of psychiatric medications during pregnancy, the postpartum period and lactation. You can register for virtual rounds HERE.  

MASSACHUSETTS – Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Project (MCPAP) for Moms provides real-time, perinatal psychiatric consultation and care coordination for obstetric, pediatric, primary care and psychiatric providers to effectively prevent, identify, and manage depression and other mental health concerns in pregnant and postpartum women. For more information, visit their resources page.

NEW YORK STATE – Project TEACH in New York state is a Maternal Mental Health Initiative which gives New York State maternal mental health providers opportunity to schedule a consultation with expert psychiatrists in maternal mental health through an open conference line. The open conference line is available twice weekly on Tuesdays from 5 to 6 PM and Thursdays from 1 to 2 PM.

PSI Provider Directory –  The Provider Directory is a listing of perinatal mental health providers in your area, including those offering telemedicine (LINK).

Resources for Providers Caring for Patients During the COVID-19 Outbreak

The American Psychiatric Association provides a list of resources for psychiatrists caring for patients during the COVID-19 outbreak.

The American Psychological Association and National Association of Social Workers also have specific COVID-19 resource pages.

William James College is offering a series of drop in support groups for frontline healthcare workers, behavioral health and community service managers, mental wellness workers in geriatric care, and providers of Asian descent. You can find information at their events site here.

Finding Treatment for Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders

MGH Center for Women’s Mental Health:  We continue to provide consultations via telemedicine for women with mood and anxiety disorders who are either planning pregnancy or are currently pregnant or postpartum.  

Appointments can be arranged by calling the Outpatient Psychiatry Service at (617) 724-7792 (Intake).

Restrictions regarding telemedicine consultations have been relaxed in the setting of the COVID-19 pandemic; however, you should contact your insurance provider for further details and to ensure that the consultation will be covered.    

MASSACHUSETTS – Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Project (MCPAP) for Moms provides real-time, perinatal psychiatric consultation and care coordination for obstetric, pediatric, primary care and psychiatric providers to effectively prevent, identify, and manage depression and other mental health concerns in pregnant and postpartum women. For more information, visit their resources page.

PSI Provider Directory: Search the Provider Directory to find a provider in your area that offers telemedicine (LINK).

PSI Coordinators: Local PSI coordinators can help find resources and referrals in your area, including referrals to telemedicine resources (HERE).