“I think the wounds are where we kind of catch onto each other. There’s like jagged edges and bumps and stuff that it’s like if we were all smooth, we’d just slide on by.” – Allison Staiger

Given the recent reversal of Roe v. Wade, honest insight into and support for modern-day parents or child caregiving are more necessary than ever. Although recorded weeks before the ruling, this conversation seems incredibly prescient. 

Allison Staiger, LCSW, is spiraling. “Have you heard of that term before? Spiral-linear?” she asks. I hadn’t but given her definition, it’s a concept I’m down with. “It’s where you’re still moving forward but there’s lots of cycles and you kind of cycle back. Things die and then are reborn.” 

Makes sense given Allison’s current physical and emotional “birthing” process. She’s deep in the process of relocating her life and fierce feminist care practice from Metairie, LA, to Chicago (howdy, neighbor!). Highwire Therapy supports new, expectant, hopeful, and grieving parents, helping them process perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, loss, birth trauma, caregiver burnout, infertility, and the general OMFG of becoming a parent. 

Mentally, energetically, and actually, Allison’s spinning her circle out beyond the increasingly restrictive axis of private care. The Matriarchy, her nascent coaching practice, is a shame-free space in which folks can rage against the mom-chine (well-played, Allison!), assisting clients in liberating themselves from the mommy complex. Like many parents, she’s sick to death of the false reverence surrounding caregiving. You know, the one that says if you struggle with the physical and emotional labors of parenting (and have the gall to express said struggle!), you’re a failure. Thank you, white supremacy.

While many of Allison’s clients embody fewer marginalized identities, their pain is no less worthy of healing. Allison hopes to balance a sense of community with individual emotional support at The Matriarchy. And revel in healthy doses of realized rage. 

“I definitely still feel like I am actively working on things and actively healing, particularly around motherhood and how I am supposed to do this,” she says of her anger and frustration. “It’s what inspired me to move into this in my therapeutic work and then also build my coaching business around channeling anger into something bigger and more useful.”

Parent or no, Allison challenges all of us to get in touch with our righteous anger and, honestly, there’s no time like the present. Circle back to your Divine Feminine and give the patriarchal system of oppression a big middle finger.

MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE

CWH151: Shawna Murray-Browne – Anti-oppressive and Liberation-focused

CWH147: Annie Schuessler, Rebel Therapist – Make an Impact Beyond Traditional Private Practice

Decolonizing Therapy for Black Folks

Postpartum Support International

CB Hartwell

The Enneagram Institute

GUEST CONTACT INFO & BIO

Highwire Therapy, LLC

The Matriarchy

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Allison Staiger, LCSW, is the founder of Highwire Therapy, a psychotherapy private practice, and The Matriarchy, a feminist coaching practice. As a licensed clinical social worker certified in perinatal mental health, she works with new, expectant, hopeful, and grieving parents, offering support for perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, pregnancy and infant loss, birth trauma, caregiver burnout, infertility, and the general holy shit-ness of becoming a parent. Fed up with the insufficient and oppressive norms and narratives in our current culture of caregiving, she created The Matriarchy to help parents socialized as mothers partner with their radical, rebellious anger, and channel it into fierce feminist care.