Through a series of documentary-length and short feature videos, the content on this page was produced by WQED, with vital input from community partners including Mental Health America of Southwestern Pennsylvania, NAMI Keystone Pennsylvania, Staunton Farm Foundation, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, Allegheny Health Network, and UPMC.
You’re Not Alone: Pregnancy, Postpartum and the Mental Health Crisis
Depression, anxiety, PTSD, and other psychological difficulties are the most common complications of pregnancy and postpartum – yet 75 percent go untreated. In this documentary we explore the isolating trauma that too often accompanies child birth. Women of color, women living in rural areas and birthing people within the LGBTQIA+ community are at higher risk. “You’re Not Alone” introduces individuals and families whose lives have been profoundly impacted by maternal mental health conditions while also highlighting the people and programs working for positive change.
Alone: Isolation Hurts
Social isolation has long been known to affect mental health, but new information shows it can also increase the risk of poor physical health and early death. With direct connections to depression, suicide, dementia, stroke, coronary disease and poor sleep, isolation is having an ominous and widespread effect. Even before the COVID pandemic brought enforced isolation, as many as 30 percent of people of all ages reported feeling lonely. During the pandemic, that number nearly doubled.
This 30-minute documentary by producer Beth Dolinar, explores the ways in which the spaces between us can contribute to mental and physical suffering. We are introduced to a diverse group of people who speak candidly about how isolation exacerbated their experiences with alcoholism, suicide attempts, and emotional trauma, as well as the stigma associated with loneliness. And we join them as they share their journeys from isolation to hope and re-connection.