Becoming Mothers: Perinatal Mind and Body Research

26 November - 16 December 2020, 13:00 - 14:00

Black outlined graphic illustration of a women carrying a child. Orange background.

Join us for a series of four virtual lunchtime seminars exploring women’s psychological experiences of pregnancy, birth and beyond. The sessions are aimed for an audience of academics, professionals and practitioners. Each week we will host two short (20 mins) presentations with an opportunity for questions and discussion. Each week we focus on a different theme, including Bonding with Baby, Postnatal Support, Social and Cultural Influences and Postnatal Bodies.

Thursday, 26 November, 1 - 2pm (GMT)
Theme: Bonding with Baby

Research shows that there is much variation in the strength and nature of bond within the normal parent-baby relationships, especially in pregnancy and the early weeks and months following birth. These talks discuss factors that may influence and facilitate this bond.


  • Professor Liz Meins (University of York) Mind-reading for Beginners: Intervening to Facilitate Parents' Mind-mindedness.
  • Dr Elizabeth Kirk (ARU) and Dr Catherine Preston (University of York) Bonding with Bump: Body experience in pregnancy and antenatal attachment.

Wednesday, 2 December 1 - 2pm (GMT)
Theme: Postnatal Support

Being a new parent is an emotional time especially for women who suffer from mental health conditions, are recovering from a long or traumatic birth, or those finding it difficult to establish breastfeeding. These talks consider research that addresses how postnatal women and their families can be supported.


  • Professor Amy Brown (Swansea University)
  • Dr Andrew Mayers (Bournemouth University)

Thursday, 10 December 1 - 2pm (GMT)
Theme: Self, Social and Cultural Influences

Many factors can affect psychological experience during the perinatal period including thoughts and feelings towards our self as well as about our culture and beliefs. These talks discuss how experience of the body and that of religion and faith can influence maternal wellbeing and caregiving behaviours.


  • Dr Shuby Puthussery (University of Bedfordshire) Role of Faith and Religion in Pregnancy and Childbirth.
  • Rosie Drysdale (Royal Holloway, University of London) When Sensing One’s Self is Caring for Others: Exploring relationships between maternal body awareness and mother-infant caregiving.

Wednesday, 16 December 1-2pm (GMT)
Theme: Postnatal Bodies

The postnatal period can be a challenging time adjusting to parenthood and recovering from the physical effects of pregnancy and birth. These talks examine themes about the postpartum bodily experience as well as expectations about physical and emotional benefits of parent and baby yoga.


  • Nicola Spark (York Hospital NHS Foundation Trust) – Parent and Baby Yoga and Maternal Mental Health.
  • Dr Catherine Preston (University of York) and Dr Elizabeth Kirk (ARU) - Postnatal Mind and Body.

Event Details

26 November - 16 December 2020, 13:00 - 14:00
Book to attend the seminar series.