chapter  1
Perinatal Distress: An Overview
Pages 12

According to the cognitive behavioral model, how people make meaning of their life experiences plays a large role in determining their emotional experiences and behavioral choices. The strategy that cognitive behavioral therapists use to achieve this aim is called cognitive restructuring, which is defined as the process by which clients learn to identify, evaluate, and if necessary, modify unhelpful cognition that is exacerbating their emotional distress and driving behavioral responses that might make their situations worse. Behavioral experiments allow clients to test negative predictions in their own environment, gathering evidence in their own lives that speak to the validity of their automatic thoughts. For these women, the provision of support and affective coping skills may be all that they can tolerate, with the idea that a strong therapeutic relationship will increase the likelihood that they resume CBT following childbirth so that they can begin working on this intolerance of uncertainty with less threatening situations.