KHORAI KHORAI is an online newsfeed of reproductive and maternal mental health issues, as well as topical discussions related to women's general well-being.

KHORAI is a virtual space designed to stimulate discussion related to women's emotional, physical, and spiritual formation throughout the lifespan - women’s passage through adolescence, potential motherhood or 'matrescence,' and menopause - as well as more abstract notions of the maternal or feminine within nature. KHORAI employs an inquiry-based perspective, asking questions and examining the claims of empirical science and mass media.

Mission: KHORAI seeks to bridge the gap between clinical science, mass media, and the personal experiences of contemporary women. KHORAI represents a desire to interpret public health information in a manner that is both rigorous and empathic of women’s unique status, makeup, and subjectivity.

This study examines professional, familial and social experiences of fifty-one women working as primary breadwinners aft...
09/06/2016
Working Moms Re: Stay-at-Home Dads

This study examines professional, familial and social experiences of fifty-one women working as primary breadwinners after recently shifting to nontraditional work-family arrangements—despite being confronted with stigma informed by gender stereotypes, these female breadwinners also experience psychological benefits and vocational enhancement due to stay-at-home fathers becoming primary child caregivers. Culture-shifting, trendsetting.

Dunn, M. G., Rochlen, A. B., & O’Brien, K. M. (2013). Employee, Mother, and Partner: An Exploratory Investigation of Working Women With Stay-at-Home Fathers. Journal of Career Development, 40 (1), 3-22. Stay-at-Home-Dad by Brian Kershisnik In the United States, more and more fathers are opting out o...

Researchers analyze news media narratives of ten athlete mother Olympians--elucidating the psychological implications of...
08/28/2016
Athlete-Mother / Mother-Athlete

Researchers analyze news media narratives of ten athlete mother Olympians--elucidating the psychological implications of socio-cultural expectations that shape gender identity constructions, media representations, and societal perceptions as it relates to the complex negotiation of motherhood and athletics. Reframing, myth-busting.

McGannon, K. R., Gonsalves, C. A., Schinke, R. J., & Busanich, R. (2015). Negotiating motherhood and athletic identity: A qualitative analysis of Olympic athlete mother representations in media narratives. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, (20): 51-59. Illustration by Cristóbal Schmal Media portraya...

The fifteen narratives in this article portray how the acquisition of a new maternal identity may serve as a catalyst fo...
05/24/2016
Power Within Poverty

The fifteen narratives in this article portray how the acquisition of a new maternal identity may serve as a catalyst for transformation–by providing a renewed sense of structure and stability for under-privileged women contending with mental health and substance abuse challenges; simultaneously confronting family, legal, and domestic violence hardships. Meaning-making, contextualizing.

Ali, D. S., Hall, M. E. L., Anderson, T. L., & Willingham, M. M. (2013). "I Became a Mom": Identity Changes in Mothers Receiving Public Assistance. Journal of Social Service Research, 39(5), 587-605. Woman by Maria Ines Gul Unfortunately, when enmeshed in a capitalist culture that belittles public w...

Researchers from the University of Queensland's Centre for Mothers & Babies discover how popular magazine messages can i...
05/16/2016
Popular Magazines & Birthing Decisions

Researchers from the University of Queensland's Centre for Mothers & Babies discover how popular magazine messages can influence readers’ attitudes and perceptions about unconventional childbirth practices; when provided with balanced information, participants' intentions related to selecting a medicalized or non-medicalized birth actually transformed. Promising, empowering.

Young, K., & Miller, Y. D. (2015). Keeping it natural: Does persuasive magazine content have an effect on young women’s intentions for birth? Women & Health, 55(4), 447-466. Reader on a Black Background by Henri Matisse (1939) From paperback prints to pulp publications, no kiosk is short of magazi...

University of Michigan researchers explored racial disparities in workplace breastfeeding with twenty-nine African Ameri...
05/06/2016
Breastfeeding Support for African American Women

University of Michigan researchers explored racial disparities in workplace breastfeeding with twenty-nine African American mothers via focus groups in Detroit; finding psychosocial barriers exist due to perceived threats to livelihood, lack of support from healthcare providers, and workplace stressors. Motivating, affecting.

Johnson, A. M., Kirk, R., & Muzik, M. (2015). Overcoming workplace barriers: A focus group study exploring African American mothers’ needs for workplace breastfeeding support. Journal of Human Lactation, 1-9. "Picnic" Detail by Phoebe Wahl For some mothers, breastfeeding can be as simple as placing…

This article gives voice to the unheard narratives and concomitant tragic injustices that many LGBTQ parents-to-be are f...
04/29/2016
The Untold Losses of LGBTQ Families

This article gives voice to the unheard narratives and concomitant tragic injustices that many LGBTQ parents-to-be are forced to confront while experiencing parental grief due to reproductive loss–including surrogacy and adoption losses–as queer parents. Revealing, affirming.

Craven, C. & Peel, E. (2014). Stories of Grief and Hope: Queer Experiences of Reproductive Loss. In M. F. Gibson (Ed.), Queering Motherhood: Narrative and Theoretical Perspectives (pp. 97-110). Ontario, Canada: Demeter Press. Illustration by Ping Zhu for The New York Times Magazine With LGBTQ right…

This qualitative article depicts how some women may hide their true intentions and difficulties with breastfeeding out o...
03/29/2016
Breastfeeding: Illusions & Compliance

This qualitative article depicts how some women may hide their true intentions and difficulties with breastfeeding out of fear of negative evaluation from society and healthcare providers. Illuminating, humanizing.

Spencer, R. L., White, S., & Fraser, D. M. (2015). ‘I thought it would keep them all quiet’. Women’s experiences of breastfeeding as illusions of compliance: An interpretive phenomenological study. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 71(5), 1076-1086. Illustrated Poster by Nikki McClure In a recent publica…

In this article, a team of investigators assesses media portrayals of older mothers—leading to the emergence of three ...
03/26/2016
Older Mothers & The Media

In this article, a team of investigators assesses media portrayals of older mothers—leading to the emergence of three themes related to the depiction of these women to their public audience. Demystifying, thought-provoking.

Mills, T. A., Lavender, R., & Lavender, T. (2015). “Forty is the new twenty”: An analysis of British media portrayals of older mothers. Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare, 6(2), 88-94. Evanescent/Temporal by Matthieu Bourel “So when are you thinking of having kids?”— those eight words should come with…

Here, researchers explore the pressures and rewards of step-mothering. Eight women unpack their own experiences navigati...
03/12/2016
On Step-Motherhood

Here, researchers explore the pressures and rewards of step-mothering. Eight women unpack their own experiences navigating this often-mislabeled role. Read on!

Riness, L. S., & Sailor, J. L. (2015). An exploration of the lived experience of step-motherhood. Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 56(3), 171-179. Lithograph by Bess Livings, 1937 A woman taking on the role of a stepmother is assuming an identity that is hugely and intensely stigmatized, labeled by…

Researchers listened to the emotional journeys of eight Iranian surrogate mothers. Read on!
03/04/2016
The Inner Lives of Surrogate Mothers

Researchers listened to the emotional journeys of eight Iranian surrogate mothers. Read on!

Ahmari Tehran, H., Tashi, S., Mehran, N., Eskandari, N., & Dadkhah Tehrani, T. (2014). Emotional experiences in surrogate mothers: A qualitative study. Iranian Journal of Reproductive Medicine 12(7), 471-480. Surrogate Mother by Tomer Hanuka Research supports that there is a biological bond—strongly…

Grandmothers discuss caring for, and being cared for by their daughters suffering from mental illness. (A perspective we...
02/26/2016
The Guidance of Grandmothers

Grandmothers discuss caring for, and being cared for by their daughters suffering from mental illness. (A perspective well worth considering.)

Dunkle, R. E., Ingersoll-Dayton, B., & Chadiha, L. A. (2015). Support for and From Aging Mothers Whose Adult Daughters are Seriously Mentally Ill. Journal of Gerontological Social Work, 58(6), 590-612. Illustration by Andrea Wan for The New York Times Magazine Grandmothers have stood, throughout his…

Here, survivors of postpartum hemorrhage and emergency hysterectomy sit down with a group of qualitative researchers and...
12/09/2015
Close to Death, Close to Birth

Here, survivors of postpartum hemorrhage and emergency hysterectomy sit down with a group of qualitative researchers and share their stories. Fascinating, heartbreaking.

Elmir, R. Schmied, V., Jackson, D., & Wilkes, L. (2012). Between life and death: Women's experiences of coming close to death, and surviving a severe postpartum haemorrhage and emergency hysterectomy. Midwifery, 28, 228-235. Looking for the mother by Louise Bourgeois & Tracey Emin, 2009—2010 Childbi…

"If we choose to commend a woman's agency over her own reproduction, we must also respect that a woman's path to motherh...
12/02/2015
On "Delaying" Motherhood

"If we choose to commend a woman's agency over her own reproduction, we must also respect that a woman's path to motherhood is heavily nuanced and complex, informed by variables ranging from a sensitive career trajectory, to absence of a committed life partner, to a meager income, to—anything, really."

Budds, K., Locke, A., & Burr, V. (2013). "Risky business:" Constructing the "choice" to "delay" motherhood in the British Press. Feminist Media Studies, 13(1), 132-147. Image Source: Flickr Medically speaking, an “older mother” is a woman who chooses to have her first child after the age of thirty-f…

Actress Mary-Louise Parker  made an extraordinary literary debut with "Dear Mr. You" last week. Here's an excerpt from o...
11/18/2015
"Dear Orderly"

Actress Mary-Louise Parker made an extraordinary literary debut with "Dear Mr. You" last week. Here's an excerpt from our favorite of the thirty-four letters.

A worthy read!

I heard a deep voice. You appeared long enough to make annoying conversation and then tried to take my baby, dissolving before my eyes when I said no. I said, no, go. Or slept long enough for you to leave and come back. Or someone else did. I don’t really know what I saw but it kept happening. I was…

Australian researchers set out to equip ten pregnant women with mindfulness-based coping techniques. The results are qui...
04/25/2015
A Mindful Pregnancy

Australian researchers set out to equip ten pregnant women with mindfulness-based coping techniques. The results are quite profound—read on!

Dunn, C., Hanieh, E., Roberts, R., & Powrie, R. (2012). Mindful pregnancy and childbirth: Effects of a mindfulness-based intervention on women’s psychological distress and well-being in the perinatal period. Women’s Mental Health, 15, 139-143. Artwork by Omar Galliani Pregnancy is taxing on mind and…

Doulas are saying they want to be better equipped when helping mothers deal with postpartum depression. Solution? Here's...
04/04/2015
Doula Intervention for PPD?

Doulas are saying they want to be better equipped when helping mothers deal with postpartum depression. Solution? Here's what this particular group of mothers and doulas came up with:

McComish, J.F., Groh, C.J., & Moldenhauer, J.A. (2013). Development of a Doula Intervention for Postpartum Depressive Symptoms: Participants’ Recommendations. Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Nursing, 26, 3-15. Bibiche by Mathilde Aubier Postpartum depression (PPD) is a condition that str…

What's feeding maternal guilt?
03/15/2015
Feeling guilty?

What's feeding maternal guilt?

Liss, M., Schffrin, H. H., & Rizzo, K.M., (2013). Maternal guilt and shame: The role of self-discrepancy and fear of negative evaluation. Journal of Child & Family Studies, 22, 1112-1119. Painting by Andre Kohn It is not uncommon for mothers to feel guilt and shame. This could be due to the burden…

How do a mother's perceptions of her child's well-being affect her self-appraisal as a parent?
03/03/2015
Mutual Benefit in the Mother-Child Dyad

How do a mother's perceptions of her child's well-being affect her self-appraisal as a parent?

Barbot, B., Crossman, E., Hunter, S. R., Grigorenko, E. L., & Luthar, S. S. (2014). Reciprocal influences between maternal parenting and child adjustment in a high risk population: A 5-year cross-lagged analysis of bidirectional effects. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 84(5), 567-580. Photograp…

Postpartum skin-to-skin care between mother and child help facilitate good health and emotional attachment. Yet, many mo...
01/17/2015
Skin-to-Skin Barriers

Postpartum skin-to-skin care between mother and child help facilitate good health and emotional attachment. Yet, many mothers do not practice it. What are some of the barriers?

Ferrarello, D. (2014). Barriers to skin-to-skin care during the post-partum stay. The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing, 39(1), 56-61. Photograph by Eve Arnold It is widely known that skin-to-skin care (SSC) after birth facilitates good health and quality attachment. Previous research in t…

What is the birthing experience like for women who have miscarried?
12/20/2014
Miscarriage & The First Baby

What is the birthing experience like for women who have miscarried?

Kinsey, C. B., Baptiste‐Roberts, K., Zhu, J., & Kjerulff, K. H. (2013). Effect of previous miscarriage on the maternal birth experience in the First Baby Study. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing, 42(4), 442-450. Illustration by Siret Roots Giving birth is a demanding process, a…

A community member has shared a beautiful poem he wrote for his unborn son during his partner's pregnancy.
11/20/2014
Tracing the Slope

A community member has shared a beautiful poem he wrote for his unborn son during his partner's pregnancy.

Photograph by Kelly Hicks She walks carefully As if she is bringing water From the well, And a missed footing Would cause a spill. Her breasts, Heaving, hanging She walks with her Hand holding her belly. We talk, Respinning the web, I sleep closer to her, She holds the wonder And so generous, She…

Do complimentary and alternative medicine methods help reduce labor pain?
11/16/2014
Self-Hypnosis & Labor Pain

Do complimentary and alternative medicine methods help reduce labor pain?

Werner A, Uldbjerg N, Zachariae R, Rosen G, & Nohr E. (2013). Self-hypnosis for coping with labour pain: A randomised controlled trial. BJOG, 120, :346–353. Artwork by Jean Faucher Not surprisingly, little research has been conducted on the use of complimentary and alternative medicine (CAM) for r…

What obstacles do mothers with serious mental illnesses face as they negotiate treatment and parenting side-by-side? Do ...
11/11/2014
On Being a Mother in a State Hospital

What obstacles do mothers with serious mental illnesses face as they negotiate treatment and parenting side-by-side? Do clinical settings cater to this through mother-centered interventions?

Benders-Hadi, N., Barber, M., & Alexander, M.J. (2013) Motherhood in women with serious mental illness. Psychiatric Quarterly. 84: 65-72 Judy Drew Love of a Child Being diagnosed with a serious mental illness (SMI) can be devastating to anyone, but what are the particular challenges mothers must fa…

Choices in Childbirth has just released a report examining maternity care in New York City and exploring the role of dou...
11/06/2014
CHOICES IN CHILDBIRTH ANNOUNCES THEIR "DOULA CARE IN NYC" REPORT

Choices in Childbirth has just released a report examining maternity care in New York City and exploring the role of doula support in reducing cesarean rates, shortening labors, lessening need for epidurals and improving patient experience.

Choices in Childbirth launches “Doula Care in New York City: Advancing the Goals of the Affordable Care Act” Click here for full report and toolkit. (NEW YORK) October 29, 2014 – Choices in Childbirth (CiC) announces the release of their report, “Doula Care in New York City: Advancing the Goals of t…

Do you know your rights as a pregnant worker, parent or caregiver? Mark your calendars for this event!
10/26/2014
Join A Better Balance at Teachers College, NYC

Do you know your rights as a pregnant worker, parent or caregiver? Mark your calendars for this event!

Join A Better Balance to discuss their new book BABYGATE: How to Survive Pregnancy & Parenting in the Workplace. They will also discuss their new report THE PREGNANCY PENALTY among other many interesting topics related to maternal and reproductive health! * Teachers College, Columbia University * 5…

Is there a relationship between Vitamin D levels during pregnancy and postpartum depression?
10/21/2014
Vitamin D & Postpartum Depression

Is there a relationship between Vitamin D levels during pregnancy and postpartum depression?

Nielsen, N. O., Strøm, M., Boyd, H. A., Andersen, E. W., Wohlfahrt, J., et al. (2013). Vitamin D status during pregnancy and the risk of subsequent postpartum depression: A case-control study. PLOS ONE, 8(11). Illustration Art (Inside Cover) by Walter Crane (1901) in A Masque of Days by Charles La…

How do you feel about the 'ideal mother' archetype? Check out this episode of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's online vi...
10/11/2014
Artwatch: Motherhood Connections at the Met

How do you feel about the 'ideal mother' archetype? Check out this episode of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's online video series!

In 2011, the Metropolitan Museum of Art invited members of its staff to share their perspectives on any of the two million pieces in the permanent collection that fascinate them. The online series, "Connections," was formed over the course of a year and consists of 100 episodes of image slideshows w…

How has society's view of working mothers and childcare shifted over time? Researchers have traced a reevaluation of wha...
10/09/2014
On Mothering & Responsibility

How has society's view of working mothers and childcare shifted over time? Researchers have traced a reevaluation of what it means to be a 'good' mother.

Wall, G. (2013). "Putting family first": Shifting discourses of motherhood and childhood in representations of mothers' employment and child care. Women’s Studies International Forum, 40, 162-171. Artwork by Phoebe Wahl In a 2009 article from Today’s Parent magazine, entrepreneurship is portrayed as…

Are you interested in women's health and human rights? Take part in this conference to have your ideas heard!
10/02/2014
Society for Menstrual Cycle Research 2015: Call for Papers!

Are you interested in women's health and human rights? Take part in this conference to have your ideas heard!

The Society for Menstrual Cycle Research is now accepting submissions for their conference June 4-6th, 2015 in Boston at The Center for Women's Health & Human Rights. They are looking for abstracts—of no more than 500 words—describing papers, posters, workshops, panels or creative presentations. Pro…

The healthcare needs of lesbian women are not often distinguished from the healthcare needs of other women. How does thi...
09/27/2014
Queer at the Clinic: Navigating Healthcare as Lesbian Mothers

The healthcare needs of lesbian women are not often distinguished from the healthcare needs of other women. How does this affect birthing and parenting experiences?

Hayman, B., Wilkes, L., Halcomb, E. J., & Jackson, D. (2013). Marginalised mothers: Lesbian women negotiating heteronormative healthcare services. Contemporary Nurse : A Journal for the Australian Nursing Profession, 44(1), 120-129. Birthright by Amaryllis DeJesus Moleski The healthcare needs o…

What does birth look like across cultures?
09/20/2014
Artwatch: Birth Culture

What does birth look like across cultures?

Photographer Alice Proujansky has worked on several projects showcasing women, such as depicting the intersection of identities as mothers and workers in "Working Mothers." Her latest endeavor, "Birth Culture," captures the ways in which people around the world – from Mayan clinics in Mexico to slu…

It's that time of the year again! Submissions are welcome from scholars, students, activists, community agencies, artist...
09/18/2014
Annual MOM Conference 2015 Call for Submissions!

It's that time of the year again! Submissions are welcome from scholars, students, activists, community agencies, artists, journalists and mothers.

Museum of Motherhood - Annual MOM Conference 2015 “New Maternalisms”: Tales of Motherwork (Dislodging the Unthinkable) April 30th, May 1st-2nd, NYC Deadline: December 15, 2014 As another Mother’s Day approaches, this conference, designed to bring together academics, artists, and laypersons will be a…

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