PALM BEACH COUNTY, FL January 22, 2015 – Having a baby is supposed to be the happiest time of your life. But what if it’s not? A stunning documentary reveals the plight of mothers who struggle to find support and treatment for postpartum depression and other perinatal mood disorders. Two women, Jennifer Silliman and Maureen Fura, both with firsthand knowledge of this challenge, came together to give a face and a voice to the countless women who suffer in silence. With the help of Dr. Shoshana Bennett, Executive Producer, they have produced a documentary film, uncovering the disconnect within the medical community to effectively screen, refer, and treat these women.
Described as “Chilling and Brilliant” by Choice! Film Festival, their documentary, Dark Side of the Full Moon is available for in-home viewing until January 30th on Reelhouse. After January 30th, it will be exclusively available through community screenings and theatrical releases through Tugg.com
One in seven women will experience a pregnancy and postpartum mood and anxiety disorder, and one in one thousand will suffer from postpartum psychosis. Considered one of the most common complications of childbirth, up to 20 percent of women are affected by a maternal mental health complication each year. However, it is the one condition during pregnancy and postpartum that is most often under-diagnosed by care providers. “The system is failing, and we are trying to educate moms, as well as health professionals,” says Silliman, the film’s producer.
“Nobody is asking any questions. Women are dying! Families are suffering! And there still isn’t a comprehensive policy to protect mothers,” says Fura, the film’s writer and director.
“These are very real illnesses, and they need to be taken seriously. The film highlights peer-to-peer support groups, relevant policy, research, and treatment. But so much more is needed,” says Bennett, the film’s executive producer, who is also a keynote speaker, author and guest lecturer.
“Resources continue to evolve, as our organization trains more professionals and volunteers to support these women. But we need more awareness and more contributions to support our efforts,” says Ann D. S. Smith, CNM, and President of Postpartum Support International (PSI), the leading organization dedicated to helping women suffering from perinatal mood disorders. PSI will host their 28th Annual Conference in Michigan this June.
Women looking for support can contact the PSI warmline, which is available every day in English and Spanish, 1-800-944-4773 (4PPD). Resources and information about postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis can be found on our website: www.postpartum.net.