Reflections on the White House Petition, by Walker Karraa, PhD

For the past month I’ve told everyone I know to sign the White House petition created by Dr. Walker Karraa titled “Every mother, every time” asking our government to provide universal mental health screening for pregnant and postpartum women. The petition received over 2200 signatures thanks to Dr. Karraa’s enormous amount of work promoting the petition with every fiber of her being. Awareness was created. A conversation about this subject has begun.

But this petition deserved MILLIONS of signatures and ginormous amounts of support from every political mover and shaker in the land. The First Lady should have been behind it from day one. Dr. Karraa, a busy working mom and wife, couldn’t do all the work alone.

I found it disheartening to see other petitions listed on the White House website (frankly ludicrous ones, i.e. deport Justin Bieber, change all bathrooms to unisex, get rid of Alaska & hand it over to Russia!!!! etc.) garner many, many thousands more than “Every mother, every time”.  I don’t have to tell you that our country’s priorities are totally and pathetically out of whack.

In this insightful blog post by Dr. Karraa she reflects upon her petition experience, and she also brilliantly examines a campaign called “Speak Up When You’re Down” which encourages women to talk about their mental health during pregnancy and postpartum that I’ve been following for a while.

While the title is a good one, the campaign definitely has significant shortcomings.  Within this concise post Dr. Karraa covers a lot of ground, revealing some surprising, fascinating and resoundingly true observations.  She has the courage to touch on some alarming points about maternal mental health and its community of professional providers.  She has guts to do that, let me tell you!

In any case, I encourage you to read this post, and visit Dr. Karraa’s new website for more powerful, inspiring, provocative writing. (If you are interested in contributing to Stigmama, please contact Dr. Karraa at  Thanks & have a great Sunday!