‘Workin’ Moms’ Creator and Star Catherine Reitman Opens Up About Postpartum Depression, Therapy and ‘Feeling Broken’

WrapWomen LA Blog: “Once I revealed my secret of feeling broken, it really set me free,” Catherine Reitman told WrapWomen

Catherine Reitman (Photo Credit: Matt Barnes)
Catherine Reitman (Photo Credit: Matt Barnes)

Catherine Reitman isn’t like a regular mom – she’s a cool mom, who gets s–t done. In addition to raising two sons, Reitman is also the creator, writer, director and producer of Netflix’s “Workin’ Moms.” The show, which was inspired by Reitman’s own struggle with postpartum depression, follows a group of friends and their unabashed realities of balancing breast pumps, board rooms and baby daddies.

In the wake of coronavirus, many mothers have gone from working moms to stay-at-home moms. “We are currently writing season five, pretending our world is the same,” Reitman tells WrapWomen. “Working with screaming children at our feet has not been easy.” Reitman opened up to us about the realities of balancing motherhood and her various roles on set.

What advice do you have for working moms in quarantine?
Be easy on yourself. Acknowledge small victories. Stay active.

What do you tell other working moms when they ask for help?
Tell your story. Whatever dreams you had prior to having children are still important… and not just to you.

What’s a metaphor you would use to describe balancing show business and motherhood?
It’s like hiking a mountain, known for killing women, with a baby on your back.

Did colleagues start treating you differently when you became a working mom?
Yes. People are scared. We’ve all been trained that motherhood is associated with purity on some level. It is this principle that caused the identity crisis I experienced after my first child. However, it is up to us to retrain the public on the realities of motherhood. We are warriors that can handle any battlefield!

You’ve mentioned before how you suffered postpartum depression, how did you get yourself out?
Feeling like myself again took time and patience. Speaking to friends, family and eventually a therapist made the biggest difference for me. Once I revealed my secret of feeling broken, it really set me free.

How do you make yourself stand out in a male dominated field?
For me, trying to stand out isn’t the key. I have found being my most authentic self at each stage of the creative process has proven to be very effective.

How have your children affected your comedy?
Children are a daily reminder of how imperfect you are. They keep you grounded, challenged and searching for solutions. These are key ingredients in making funny.

With “Workin’ Moms” having just been renewed for its fifth season, do you prefer being in front of, or behind the camera?
I like all sides! Quit limiting me!

How important is it that most of “Workin’ Moms” production is run by women?
My cast and crew is one the finest I’ve ever worked with. Having equal women, both on set and in the writer’s room, has given the stories so much more depth.

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