Find Your Board CE Requirements & Accreditations:
Return to Course List

Dropping the Baby and Other Scary Thoughts, 2nd Edition

Author: Karen Kleiman, MSW, LCSW, Amy Wenzel, PhD, ABPP, Hilary Waller, MS, LPC and Abby Adler Mandel, PhD
(Click author's name for bio)

Course Created: 2023

Practice Level: Intermediate

Book Required Duration: 15 hours
4.6 out of 5.0, Based on: 1,004 reviews

Course Summary

    The birth of a new baby brings joy to many parents, but it can also cause unexpected emotions and thoughts. This is particularly true in mothers, who may experience anxiety, depression, and/or emotional distress during pregnancy and postpartum. Mental health providers can support patients struggling through the perinatal period by helping them to understand their “scary thoughts” (a term used to describe the upsetting thinking that can interfere with the wellbeing of a new mother), normalizing their experience, and assessing the severity of their distress. Dropping the Baby and Other Scary Thoughts, 2nd Edition provides essential information that both the client and the treating therapist can use when dealing with intrusive, negative, and unwanted thoughts. The purpose of this intermediate level course is to prepare psychologists, counselors, social workers, and marriage and family therapists to support perinatal women experiencing “scary thoughts”.

    Clinicians can use the information presented in this learning material to identify clients experiencing perinatal distress and determine appropriate treatment options that reflect the needs of those clients. It also helps providers recognize not only professional treatment options, but also self-help strategies that may reduce negative feelings in the clients they are supporting. Other topics covered include the role of support systems and support considerations for diverse parents and clients from different cultural contexts. Upon completion of this course, providers will be able to screen and assess for perinatal anxiety and depression as well as recommend and support with interventions intended to improve anxiety and depressive symptoms in perinatal women.

Course Format

This course is based on a book and a post test. When you're ready, purchase the test by clicking the "Add To Cart" button. This will let you take the test and receive your certificate for CE credits.

Learning Objectives

  • Identify the different presentations of anxiety and depressive disorders in perinatal mothers.
  • Describe the nature, prevalence, and effects of “scary thoughts” in perinatal women.
  • Discuss factors that may increase a woman’s vulnerability to experiencing “scary thoughts” during the postpartum period.
  • Recognize the symptoms of anxiety-related and depressive psychiatric disorders that may present in perinatal mothers.
  • Explain the cognitive, societal, and symptomatic barriers that may deter a woman from disclosing her perinatal distress.
  • Describe screening practices that mental health providers can use when providing support to perinatal mothers.
  • Discuss responses, self-help strategies, and nonprofessional interventions that may help improve anxiety and depressive symptoms in perinatal women.
  • Identify elements of the cognitive model and strategies that may help perinatal patients reduce distressing thoughts and emotions.
  • Discuss the concept of acceptance as a means to reduce suffering among perinatal women in distress.
  • Describe psychotherapy and medication interventions available to treat perinatal women seeking professional support.
  • Differentiate the mechanisms of practical, emotional, and psychosocial support systems beneficial to the physical and psychological health of perinatal women.
  • Recognize how family roles, life experiences, and cultural contexts may influence the development and presentation of perinatal anxiety and depression in parents.
  • Identify strategies that are recommended to perinatal women trying to cope with and break the cycle of “scary thoughts”.

Course Syllabus

A Mother’s Anxiety

A Closer Look

Why Am I Having Scary Thoughts?

How Do You Know If You Need Help

Barriers to Relief

Screening for Scary Thoughts

Things You Can Do to Feel Better

Can You Really Change How You Think?

Working Toward Acceptance

Professional Treatment Options

How Others Can Help

Recognizing the Needs of Diverse Parents

Your Personal Treatment Plan, provider #1115, is approved as an ACE provider to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Regulatory boards are the final authority on courses accepted for continuing education credit. ACE provider approval period: 07/08/21-07/08/24. Social workers completing this course receive 15 clinical continuing education credits.

We are committed to providing our learners with unbiased information. Ce4Less never accepts commercial support and our authors have no significant financial or other conflicts of interest pertaining to the material.


Most of our courses will satisfy your CE requirements. However, you can double check by selecting your State and profession at the top of the page.
This course does require a textbook.
No prerequisites are required for this course.
Yes. Once you read the material and pass your test, you can print your certificate right away from your "My Account" page.
You bet, you can download the course material to your computer. You can then print it off, transfer it to your tablet or whatever works for you. Most folks print of a copy of the test and circle the answers while reading through the material.

How it Works


1. Confirm Your


2. Read the

test time

3. Take the


4. Print Your