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Why These Women Met In an Empty Field to Release a ‘Primal’ Mom Scream

Parenting has always been one of the most — if not the most — challenging roles one can take on, but parenting in a pandemic that just won’t quit has presented unending difficulties for parents of kids of all ages. As we round the bend on two full years of the ongoing pandemic that’s showing no signs of disappearing anytime soon, moms everywhere are frazzled, hitting their breaking points, and frankly, in much need of letting out a well-deserved scream or two.

That’s why Sarah Harmon, a Massachusetts-based licensed mental health counselor and yoga teacher, decided to organize a group gathering to let local Charlestown moms release some of the stress, anxiety, and tension they’ve no doubt been building up for years. Harmon used the power of social media to connect a group of moms together in a desolate field at a local high school back in 2021, and she knew that nearly a year later, moms still needed the solid release of a good old screaming session.

Harmon tells SheKnows the idea came about through conversations with women in her clinical practice early on during the pandemic, as many shared the common feelings they’d been holding in: intense rage, grief, anxiety, and fear. In 2020, she launched The School of MOM to provide much-needed resources for moms as they navigate parenting through unprecedented times. Harmon, who has two young children herself, also had experience with supporting women through her longtime yoga practice, and says she feels “intimately connected” to the myriad of feelings shared by those whose job it is to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, healthy, and happy riding such uncharted waves.

Though she was supposed to be on a meditation retreat that was cancelled due to the current surge of COVID-19 cases, Harmon knew she and other moms needed that release again, so the meditation turned into a guided scream session on a recent frigid January night. Though Harmon tells SheKnows that it really wasn’t her idea, noting that screaming is the human body’s healthy and normal way of processing and releasing emotion.

“Women deserve all the permission to express such taboo emotions,” she says, noting that screaming is handling your emotions — even when society seemingly sends a different message in ways large and small.

In fact, primal therapy, a practice developed by the late psychologist Arthur Janov taps into those intense emotions, encouraging their release by way of screaming. So whether you’re heading out into a field alongside fellow moms or simply letting out a deep-throated yell in the privacy of your house, your car, or into a pillow, there’s no shame in letting out what’s been bottled up inside for so long. Trust us, you deserve it.

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