1st Edition

A Transactional Analysis of Motherhood and Disturbances in the Maternal From Pre-conception to Human Being

By Emma Haynes Copyright 2025
    292 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    292 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Grounded in research and clinical experience and with plenty of case examples, this book provides a relational Transactional Analysis diagnosis and treatment strategy to give immediate relief for maternal mental illness.

    Maternal mental illness is common, painful, poorly understood, misdiagnosed and often unspoken. For many years this condition has been known as postnatal depression. Yet it is so much more than this with countless women experiencing a multitude of different types of distress in pregnancy and for many years post birth. This book covers not only those conditions commonly known but also explores other factors such as Artificial Reproductive Techniques, miscarriage, termination for fetal abnormality, birth trauma, and infertility and how to treat them. It highlights the true breadth, depth and costs of the maternal journey and emphasises the struggles all parents can experience, no matter where in the world they live.

    Written in a clear and concise style, this book will be valuable reading for TA psychotherapists and students, and anyone wanting to enlarge their knowledge of motherhood and parenting.

    1. Something is Amiss with Motherhood - Disturbance  2. A Silent Problem - Understanding Maternal Mental Illness  3. What Are We Treating - Assessment and Diagnosis  4. Healing Through Relationship - Relational TA  5. Exploring the Dialectics of Survival and Potential Protocol (written in collaboration with Ronen Stillman)  6. The Fundamental Role of ‘Mother’ in an Infant’s Life - Attachment and Affect-Regulation  7. 1001 Ways to Devise a Treatment - Treatment Planning (with dialogue from members of Our Evolution)  8. Speaking Beyond Words - Using Creative Methods to Unlock Silence  9. A Joint Endeavour - Working with Couples (with contributions from Valeria Villa)  10. Freedom from Isolation - Working with Groups (with contributions from Valeria Villa and Sarah Crowley)  11. Losing a Sense of Self - Fathers and Partners (written in collaboration with Oliver Hunt)  12. Complex Presentations, Disturbance and Self-Care  13. Interconnectivity that is Human Being – The Inter-Relational  14. A Lifetime’s Reduction in Mental Illness?



    Emma Haynes, PhD, MSc, UKCP, TSTA-P, is a relational TA psychotherapist in private practice. She began to specialise in maternal mental illness when she realised how little support was on offer for women and parents experiencing difficulties in their parenting journey. She has written articles for several academic journals about this condition and is passionate about educating both the general public and healthcare practitioners on suitable treatment. She is also a founder member of www.ourevolution.eu an international network of perinatal psychotherapists.

    ‘Emma Haynes offers TA clinicians a stimulating political and clinical perspective on the complexities of childbirth, motherhood and parenting.’

    Dr Helen Hargaden

    ‘An invaluable resource for clinicians, practitioners, parents, and anyone interested in the profound impact of the maternal journey on individuals and society.’

    Chris Riches, Daily Express

    ‘A uniquely powerful book that tackles the silence that often shrouds maternal experiences, addressing the guilt, shame, and stigma that hinder open communication about perinatal difficulties.’

    Richard Moriarty, The Sun

    ‘This is a compassionate, wise and pioneering book. It gives profound insight into the depth and scope of working therapeutically with the possible disturbance in mother/child relationship and its impact on identity and development of self. Emma Haynes shares her research, rich experience and passion about this topic with her authentic voice, engaging with the reader and her colleagues in a process that beautifully reflects the relational and inter-relational approach to this significant subject. This is a book all parents and prospective parents need to read, it is certainly an impressive, vital contribution to Transactional Analysis theory and practice and is a must-read for anyone in the field of psychotherapy or counselling.’

    Adrienne Lee, TSTA(P), Director of The Berne Institute, UK

    ‘A quote from Chapter 1 of the book: ‘Isn’t it high time governments and medical professions across the world focused on the care of pregnant women, their birth experience, and the support and care they need to bring up the next generations to be happy, healthy, well-adjusted and useful members of society?’ And later ‘Mothers are the containers of the future of humanity – the very essence of human potential and human survival. Surely, they warrant our greatest support’. With those stirring sentiments in her heart and mind, Emma Haynes sets out to inform, educate and inspire therapists to understand and take seriously every aspect of maternal and peri-natal psychotherapy. To say this book is comprehensive is an understatement. It covers everything from global trends in maternal experiences and social attitudes through to individual, powerful examples from the author’s practice; from statistics about inadequacy in standards of care for women, and especially Black mothers, through to how to negotiate the role of the mother-in-law and cultural differences in co-parenting; from an exploration of serious and complex mental illnesses associated with childbirth through to the ‘both normal and natural’ vagaries of parenthood. Touchingly, in an echo of ‘it takes a village to raise a child’, Haynes includes the ‘inter-relationality’ of wider society and its importance to the development of the child and the care of the mother. She also includes the words and ideas of many of her colleagues and supervisees, including a Europe-wide group of interested psychotherapists called ‘Our Evolution’ who meet to support each other and develop ideas. A chapter on treatment planning was co-created by that group and is a valuable jewel in the book. Emma Haynes is knowledgeable and articulate; passionate and compassionate, political and persuasive in her desire for the world to change in its attitudes and practices. She intends to transform the health of generations of mothers and children – this book is the field manual!’

    Professor Charlotte Sills, Ashridge Hult Business School, Metanoia Institute, UK

    ‘Dr Haynes brings a timely and critical attention to the importance of the maternal space, within a contemporary feminist and intersectional framework. Generous in her collaboration with others, this is a groundbreaking work in Transactional Analysis by a pioneering author, advocate, and activist. Highlighting the scarcity of research in this area, the author calls for expanded inquiry and collaboration to enhance the understanding and treatment of perinatal mental health issues. Her advocacy for a TA Relational Psychotherapy as a means for lasting change for mothers, fathers and parents, sets a hopeful tone for future practices in mental health care. This is not just a book: It is a clarion call for a movement to recognise and address the complexities of maternal mental health in psychotherapy. It will serve as an essential guide for TA practitioners and a call to action for the wider psychotherapy community, bringing the core concepts of relational TA to the topic of maternal mental health. It stands as a testament to the transformative power of relational perinatal psychotherapy, offering new horizons in the care and understanding of maternal mental health.’

    Helen Rowland, DipSw CTA (P) TSTA (P) UKCP registered psychotherapist, co-editor of the Transactional Analysis Journal